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Author Topic: MF - dont bother  (Read 8007 times)
Morgan_Moore
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« on: September 18, 2006, 02:08:07 PM »
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Reasons not to go the MF route ..

"I want really big files because I am a landscape photographer"

Stitch your DSLR images


"I want my stuff to look good in glossy mags"

16MP is fine for that

"I want to contibute to stock libraries"

They take canon stuff else they would be empty - dont worry

"I want to shoot low light and 800ISO sounds cool- MF is there now"

Camera shake and slow lenses will kill any advantages


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Reasons to go the MF route

"I shoot in bright light which I want to control against my flash"

MF leaf lenses and 25  or 50 ISO - the only way to go

(so no mamiyas then)

"Am an an architectural photographer whose clients are used to 54"

Then you need  every digital advantage to get near it

"I love the Bokeh of MF lenses"

If you are sure an 85 1.2 or a 35 1.4 is no good then MF it is
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Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2006, 03:04:21 PM »
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My reasons for planning to swap to MFDB

- I miss the bigger viewfinders of medium format

- I like the colours and smooth gradations of the 16 bit files which the MFDBs produce

- 16 MP is not enough resolution

- decent lenses (it's amazing how often the 85L is used in Canon's defence. If only the other lenses were as good)
« Last Edit: September 18, 2006, 03:05:13 PM by foto-z » Logged

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Morgan_Moore
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« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2006, 03:21:39 PM »
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- I miss the bigger viewfinders of medium format

Absolutely - you need it with no decent multipoint AF

- I like the colours and smooth gradations of the 16 bit files which the MFDBs produce
- 16 MP is not enough resolution

how are you using? most of my paying clients very happy with 16mp both in poster and glossy magazine repro
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Sam Morgan Moore Cornwall
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« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2006, 03:25:52 PM »
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seems like you have made up your mind...and DSLR is the way to go for you...
and you bring up a couple of valid points...
but there is a difference and there are good reasons for digital MF (other then the ones you listed)...
i am happy that you obviously found the tools that help you do your work the way you want it to be done...that is the most important thing..as long as it enables you to get get your vision across...does not matter if you shoot throwaway cameras or LOMO or P45 or 8x10 sheets...in the end one is not any better or more valid then the other...
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damien
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« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2006, 03:31:19 PM »
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I make better pictures when I shoot MF. It's not about pixel count, or resolution, or bit depth it's about pictures. It's like drinking a beer from the right kind of glass - does it taste better? Yes.

Damien :-)
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Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2006, 03:33:00 PM »
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Absolutely - you need it with no decent multipoint AF

Only 1 in 5 of the EOS DSLRs I've used has been able to autofocus reliably. Totally unusable. Maybe I'm just unlucky. Then there's the issue of AF not picking the focal plane you wanted anyway. Or hunting for so long that manual focus would have been quicker.

Which T/S lenses employ AF?

Aside from AF, if you enjoy composing an image at such a small size, then great for you. I don't.

Quote
how are you using? most of my paying clients very happy with 16mp both in poster and glossy magazine repro

Yes, 16 MP is basically enough for an A3 spread with bleed (actually 18MP is technically required) but gives you no room for creative cropping in post, or some large print work.
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Morgan_Moore
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« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2006, 03:36:18 PM »
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"seems like you have made up your mind...and DSLR is the way to go for you..."

I am the proud owner of an H1 and Eyelike back

As a member of the 'flash and expose for the sky' school leaf shutter lenses are a gift

This thread was started as I went off topic on the 'secret forums' thread

My intention is to make people think why they really want to move to MF and most impotantly listen carefully to those existant owners on these threads who make subltle points about thier use

If we save someone $0000s by keeping them from making the wrong choice then the forum has value

-----------------------

Damien.. you use it for the Bokeh and bright view - your work is wonderful - also you cant stitch people which is what you shoot

As an H1 user at weddings you will appreciate those flash synchs on sunny days

You, like me, love your H1 and back  combo where 100% right to get it

You also, like me, have a nikon in your pocket because you know where an MFDB is not the correct solution

On the forum we have wedding photographers considering mamiya (125 synch) and landscape photographers considering a back for what can be easily done with stitching

Having added your signature people will see your work and realise you are worth listening to
« Last Edit: September 18, 2006, 03:44:22 PM by Morgan_Moore » Logged

Sam Morgan Moore Cornwall
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« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2006, 03:37:27 PM »
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the point i really agree with is that 16mpix is enough...it is more then enough for commercial applications...no magazine/poster/display in the world would show you the difference between 16 and 39mpix...if you need to make 20x30 museum prints of trees, no question...
16bit is a huge difference...4bit is not 4 times the information, it is expotential...huge difference...can't be seen in magazines or print, but can easily be seen on the screen and when working with files...you just cannot get the shadowdetail and transitions with DSLR....
the lenses are a major difference...i do not have to apply any sharpening when shooting with MF...only in post production, some sharpening in some areas....compared to canon, even with the 100macro (which is one sharp lens) the files aren't even close....
and i haven't talked about color and the time i save in post processing compared to the canon files...
but again if i need 1600asa, changing light, 3frames/sec....canon is the way to go...but even there i find myself shooting more and more with MF...at 400, yes a little more blur, a little more noise....but in the end it feels more like TRI-X to me....
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damien
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« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2006, 05:11:32 PM »
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It's not how many pixels that matters, it's magnification. My 20" prints from the P25 at ISO400 have a character and quality of their own far surpassing anything I've seen from a smaller sensor. Mabe it's the 16 bit but it reminds me of the difference between 35mm Velvia Trannies and 120 Velvia trannies both capable of a double page spread but you can easily tell the difference.

But it's no good having all that quality if you cant get the shot because your camera is too slow to use or you can't use flash at a high enough shutter speed or some other factor. A camera system is also no good if it doesn't inspire you, reward you and be part of you. A good sign of this is when you start looking around at other systems. I bought a Rollei 6008 kit with 2 bodies and 4 lenses at a cost of 14k in 2000 and got six weddings shot before I realised that the system and I were incompatable. I went digital the same year with 2 Fuju S1's. Liberating experience! I felt in control and like a boy with a new train set. 3MP was all I was shooting but somehow it seemed enough. I sold the Rollei kit straight away while it still had a value.

Morgan is right, (thanks for the kind words :-) we all have a responsability but there are so many subjective reasons to buy a camera that common sense often goes out of the window - and so it should at times. Just be sure to get the picture whatever kit you chose.

Damien.
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www.lovegroveportraits.com
www.lovegroveweddings.com
www.lovegroveconsulting.com
H1/P25 -35mm,80mm,100mm,210mm
Nikon D200 - 17-35,28-70,70-200VR all at f2.8
Canon 5D - 16-35,24-70,70-200IS all at f2.8
Ex Rollei 6008 kit, Hass V kit, Mamiya 645 pro TL kit.
Fritzer
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« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2006, 01:29:35 PM »
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That reminds me of the discussions of 15 years ago, when every couple of month a new generation of film came out.
The measurement results suggested 35mm with high quality glass might equal medium format in quality.

In real life, there was no substitute for format, even the cheapest MF system was running circles around any Leica. What's sharpness if you don't get colour depth etc ?

Seems to me not much has changed; if one needs a fast , compact camera system, or doesn't do high tier stuff, a 35mm FF sensor will do.
For top-notch quality, a MF digiback is required, even though it still can't compete with 4x5, imho.
But digital is the future, and it's soooo comfortable .....
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Morgan_Moore
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« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2006, 01:58:48 PM »
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Stitching for still life and landscape  work with a DSLR can give MFDB quality and perspective

Shots grabbed at 'low quality' with a DSLR are often more valuable than those missed with a cumbersome MFDB

-------------

As a commercially driven  'user' I just want to encourage people to think carefully before buying and be open about what percentage of the time my hassy is actually pulled from my bag as the most suitable tool - lower than some would think  

Of course they are better in the right situations - I just want people to be very clear what they are befor they lay out the cash
« Last Edit: September 19, 2006, 01:59:41 PM by Morgan_Moore » Logged

Sam Morgan Moore Cornwall
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« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2006, 02:48:10 PM »
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Answering to this thread? Dont bother, Morgan made up his mind. Make up your own...
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Morgan_Moore
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« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2006, 02:54:18 PM »
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Answering to this thread? Dont bother, Morgan made up his mind. Make up your own...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=76971\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

But do it with your eyes wide open not baffled by the glamour of the big boys club

----

I also went for a back before the 1ds2 existed and in a time when refurb screenless backs were not washing around the marketplace

Now I would say to many but not all - those on a tight (ish) budget ..

Get a 1ds2, a 5d, a used screenless, and a holiday or an alpa
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Sam Morgan Moore Cornwall
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« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2006, 03:00:03 PM »
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But do it with your eyes wide open not baffled by the glamour of the big boys club


[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=76974\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

That is where we  agree!
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pss
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« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2006, 03:05:01 PM »
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morgan, as you can see there is someone in this forum right now who wants to shoot runway with MF...i think we have all told him that DSLR will give him a much faster, more versatile and cheaper system and in the end the 5%extra quality won't make up for the 75% moments missed and AF misses...but everybody can do whatever they want...i agree with you completely and just like there was no one system with film, there is no one system now...
and for most printed work a 1Ds (not mkII) is plenty...but there are some applications where the extra quality is needed...or simply wanted..
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awofinden
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« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2006, 05:46:19 PM »
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Morgan, you know, you can stitch as many dslr files together as you want and you still won't have the same thing as you get from a back. Not neccesarilly worse but quite different.
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Morgan_Moore
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« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2006, 06:13:54 PM »
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I am not sure about this

-use a view camera and keep the lense still

-use multiple exposures to control latitiude

My basic point to to get people to explore  fully a wide range of options when considering what they want to achieve within a certain budget

And to listen carefully to real world expericences of actual back owners
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Sam Morgan Moore Cornwall
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Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #17 on: September 19, 2006, 07:38:47 PM »
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Morgan, you know, you can stitch as many dslr files together as you want and you still won't have the same thing as you get from a back.

True.

- you are basically limited to still scenes (a deal-breaker for most people)
- the colours and tonal gradation are still 'second best'
- you are stuck with the extra post-production overhead
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Gary Ferguson
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« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2006, 09:15:30 AM »
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Thirty odd years ago, when I was doing a degree in photography, we were told to photograph the same still life scene on 35mm, 6x6, 6x9, 4x5, and 5x7. We then printed each of these to 5x7, 10x8, 11x14, 16x20 and 20x30. The bottom line was that even with small print sizes you could still see quality advantages from using larger film formats.

Sure, lower quality optics and deteriorating film flatness removed some of the benefits of larger film sizes. And for prints of 10x8 or smaller 35mm was good enough for most applications, and 6x6 for 11x14...and so on. But there was no denying that if you were chasing the absolute best in image quality, larger formats were the way to go, rght up to contact prints which delivered the absolute gold standard.

However, with digital, in particular when the final output is an inkjet print, I just don't see the equivilant of a contact print. In other words the quality advantages of more pixels doesn't slowly fall away like the quality advantages of bigger film formats. Digital quality just seems to hit a brick wall and stop dead.

Here's an example. If I photograph the same scene using a Canon 5D and also using a Phase One P25 back on a Linhof with a sliding carriage (giving 40+MP for the stitched shot), and then print them both out to A4, I can see absolutely no difference in quality whatsoever. I've got to go up to A2 prints before I can see real differences (and I'm sceptical that even here these differences would be noticed by non-photographers).

Those of us who learnt our craft with film have taken on board an assumption that "bigger film means better prints". But with today's inkjet technology I'm sceptical that you get any better quality from small or medium sized prints (say A4 or A3) simply by throwing more pixels at the challenge. You just reach a point where there's simply no further benefit for a given paper size from more pixels.
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marcwilson
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« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2006, 10:18:41 AM »
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Gary, perhaps true of inkjets prints..from what I know even a very large inkjet print does not benefit from a file size larger than 35meg or so.

But when you use high end digital prints such as lambdas for exhibition, print sales etc, at large scale prints (30x20 40x30 inches etc) there is a very real difference between images shot on a dslr and those shot on 67 or 54 film and drum scanned.

Marc
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