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Author Topic: Leaf or Phase -P30 vs Aptus 65  (Read 7866 times)
eronald
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« on: October 14, 2006, 01:55:25 PM »
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Ok, folks, let's have *the* discussion we've all been waiting for - what are the pros and cons of these medium-price backs ?

I actually like the look and skin tone of some of the Phase files that have been sent me; This has been a surprise because conventional wisdom -and JR- says Leaf is very good on skin. On the other hand, I've had a chance to shoot a Leaf Aptus 65 back on Hasselblad and the file detail was incredible especially re. hair. Unfortunately the model's makeup obscured the skin tone in this test.

I thought the P30 was a micro-lensed cut-down P45 - am I wrong ?

This is starting to be entertaining, because as I look at the files I'm learning the tools

Edmund
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william
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2006, 02:10:34 PM »
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Edmund,

I just went thru this process myself, as you can see in this thread:

http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=12480

I ultimately decided (just this past Thursday) to go for the P30.  At some level, it was a toss-up; both systems have a few things that make them stand apart from one another, but both appear to be excellent in terms of image quality.

I actually purchased the P30+, which is not yet available, but I will receive the P30 in the meantime.  (That was one factor, BTW; the expected date for availability of the Aptus S series appears to be substantially later next year than the Phase Plus series).

Quote
Ok, folks, let's have *the* discussion we've all been waiting for - what are the pros and cons of these medium-price backs ?

I actually like the look and skin tone of some of the Phase files that have been sent me; This has been a surprise because conventional wisdom -and JR- says Leaf is very good on skin. On the other hand, I've had a chance to shoot a Leaf Aptus 65 back on Hasselblad and the file detail was incredible especially re. hair. Unfortunately the model's makeup obscured the skin tone in this test.

I thought the P30 was a micro-lensed cut-down P45 - am I wrong ?

This is starting to be entertaining, because as I look at the files I'm learning the tools

Edmund
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eronald
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2006, 02:51:37 PM »
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One of the strange impressions I have is that the Aptus 65 slightly outresolves the P30 - what d'you folks think ? The files I've seen seem to require a touch more sharpening on the Phase.

Are Mamiya lenses good enough for either ? Are they good enough for the P45 ?

Edmund
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rljones
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2006, 03:41:28 PM »
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Edmund,

The AF Mamiya lenses for the AFDii are great on my Leaf 65. I've tested/own all of the Mamiya AF prime lenses and they are very good: excellent detail and tonality. By f5.6 they appear critically sharp on the Leaf 65. (These lenses are designed for FF film so the central portion of the frame on these smaller sensors should appear more linear.)

I tested the 120/4 macro against the latest Zeiss 120/4 makro and found it every bit as good in the near range (and the Mamiya goes to 1:1 to boot without any adapters) and superior to the Zeiss at infinity.

Robert
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Jae_Moon
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2006, 03:46:58 PM »
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One of the strange impressions I have is that the Aptus 65 slightly outresolves the P30 - what d'you folks think ? The files I've seen seem to require a touch more sharpening on the Phase.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=80398\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Accoriding to Yair (http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=12233), Leaf DB does certain image enhancing processes on its RAW file.

Q by Jae Moon: How do two images, with and without factory settings on, differ in ‘looks?’
A by Yair:  Mostly in contrast, saturation, sharpness and certain colour tones. The "naked" file will look flat and desaturated

It is my understanding, based on the exchanges in above listed link, that LEAF's RAW is what I would call 'RAW +'  while Phase One does most of processing with Capture One.

Jae Moon
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eronald
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« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2006, 04:01:47 PM »
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I've been playing with Phase and Leaf files in RawDeveloper with good results, my Capture One installation has got corrupted somehow. Actually, I'm happy to see there are third party apps reading both formats.

Edmund

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Accoriding to Yair (http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=12233), Leaf DB does certain image enhancing processes on its RAW file.

Q by Jae Moon: How do two images, with and without factory settings on, differ in ‘looks?’
A by Yair:  Mostly in contrast, saturation, sharpness and certain colour tones. The "naked" file will look flat and desaturated

It is my understanding, based on the exchanges in above listed link, that LEAF's RAW is what I would call 'RAW +'  while Phase One does most of processing with Capture One.

Jae Moon
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paul_jones
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« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2006, 05:47:22 PM »
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I've been playing with Phase and Leaf files in RawDeveloper with good results, my Capture One installation has got corrupted somehow. Actually, I'm happy to see there are third party apps reading both formats.

Edmund
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i have just gone through the same process of trying to decide. i have gone with the p30, but its been a blind decision as there isnt a p30 in New Zealand to try. i relied on many many credible referals from people who had them- they seemed to love their p30s. my experience is with p25s and p45s, so i know the phase product resonably well.
if you shoot a lot of pictures under a pile of stressfull situations, i would err on the phase side. the software and workflow is really effecient. this was a major selling point for me- i often spend as much time in post as i do shooting, and anything that makes that easier is important to me.

i am hoping the file is great- the examples i have been emailed have been. i will be able to tell you for sure when i get the p30.

i was quite interested in the A65 intially, especially with the prices you get them with trading a cheap old back. i also liked the idea of being able to get a cheap valeo for backup.
but i really tried to like the software and workflow- i spent two weeks playing with lc10 and lc8. maybe im tired of learning new software, my brain feels too full- this whole digital thing can be overwelming. ive been using C1 for two years now and it works well, i can hardly fault it.

paul
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Jae_Moon
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« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2006, 06:02:12 PM »
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Actually, I'm happy to see there are third party apps reading both formats.

Edmund
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I wasn't talking about the post processing with PCs but the preprocessing of RAW files within DBs.

I was trying to point out that Leaf DB may look sharper due to its post processing on RAW files (contrast, saturation, sharpness and certain colour tones) while Phase One DBs do not. That's why I was callind Leaf's RAW file a RAW Plus.

Jae Moon
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yaya
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« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2006, 01:59:49 AM »
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I wasn't talking about the post processing with PCs but the preprocessing of RAW files within DBs.

I was trying to point out that Leaf DB may look sharper due to its post processing on RAW files (contrast, saturation, sharpness and certain colour tones) while Phase One DBs do not. That's why I was callind Leaf's RAW file a RAW Plus.

Jae Moon
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Jae,

Any RAW file without applying some enhancements will look flat and disaturated...be it Phase, Leaf, Canon or whatever.
There is NO pre-post processing done to any of these, these enhancements are based on parameters that are all tagged to the file and can be stripped or changed.

Sorry if I was missunderstood before. Doing what Edmund does is a good way to compare two files i.e. use the same converter to process them, so you can try and apply the same set of parameters and see which file gives a better look.

Yair
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Jae_Moon
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« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2006, 07:59:28 AM »
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Jae,

Any RAW file without applying some enhancements will look flat and disaturated...be it Phase, Leaf, Canon or whatever.

Doing what Edmund does is a good way to compare two files i.e. use the same converter to process them, so you can try and apply the same set of parameters and see which file gives a better look.

Yair
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Thank you Yair. I understand the enhancement of RAW files using a PC/Mac.

However, my points were if RAW files from both Leaf and Phase One were enhanced same way with 'tagged parameters' WITHIN the DB. It is my understanding that Phase One does not 'sharpen, color saturate, color balance' WITHIN  the DB while Leaf does with 'tagged parameters.'

Edmuns's finding 'seem to require a touch more sharpening on the Phase' may be from the fact the Leaf file has been 'tagged' with sharpening WITHIN the DB while Phase One hasn't.

Again, thank you for enlightening me, Yair. Please correct me if I am wrong.

Jae Moon
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vgogolak
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« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2006, 01:32:20 PM »
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Edmund,

I just went thru this process myself, as you can see in this thread:

http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=12480

I ultimately decided (just this past Thursday) to go for the P30.  At some level, it was a toss-up; both systems have a few things that make them stand apart from one another, but both appear to be excellent in terms of image quality.

I actually purchased the P30+, which is not yet available, but I will receive the P30 in the meantime.  (That was one factor, BTW; the expected date for availability of the Aptus S series appears to be substantially later next year than the Phase Plus series).
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=80391\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Dear William

Welcome to the Phase fold. I think you will enjoy the files and the workflow. I look forward to any comments you have on performance. I must wait for my P45+. I am happy you will get the loaner P30. Have fun!


Victor
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MarkKay
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2006, 02:44:15 PM »
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I have seen a few comparisons of the p45 and aptus75.  I have seen some comparisons where the aptus images look better and others where the p45 look better. i really believe it is so dependent on how the images are processed. I have never compared the two directly but i tell you that when i process my aptus 65 files with different software, the results can substantially vary.  I also think some of the differences between the leaf and p45 images are not necessarily better or worse but a matter of taste. mark

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Dear William

Welcome to the Phase fold. I think you will enjoy the files and the workflow. I look forward to any comments you have on performance. I must wait for my P45+. I am happy you will get the loaner P30. Have fun!
Victor
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« Last Edit: October 15, 2006, 02:47:13 PM by MarkKay » Logged
eronald
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« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2006, 03:01:49 PM »
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I have seen a few comparisons of the p45 and aptus75.  I have seen some comparisons where the aptus images look better and others where the p45 look better. i really believe it is so dependent on how the images are processed. I have never compared the two directly but i tell you that when i process my aptus 65 files with different software, the results can substantially vary.  I also think some of the differences between the leaf and p45 images are not necessarily better or worse but a matter of taste. mark
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Anyone with more Leaf or Aptus samples ? Models only, no still lives !

I'm looking at the P30, with its microlenses vs. the Aptus 65 at the moment. I'm also looking at Raw Developer vs Capture. Interestingly, Raw Developer is winning at the moment

BTW, has anyone ever tried a P30 on an Alpa ?  I wonder how bad the casts are with this "fashion contraption".

Edmund
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yaya
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« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2006, 03:06:22 PM »
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Thank you Yair. I understand the enhancement of RAW files using a PC/Mac.

However, my points were if RAW files from both Leaf and Phase One were enhanced same way with 'tagged parameters' WITHIN the DB. It is my understanding that Phase One does not 'sharpen, color saturate, color balance' WITHIN  the DB while Leaf does with 'tagged parameters.'

Edmuns's finding 'seem to require a touch more sharpening on the Phase' may be from the fact the Leaf file has been 'tagged' with sharpening WITHIN the DB while Phase One hasn't.

Again, thank you for enlightening me, Yair. Please correct me if I am wrong.

Jae Moon
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=80483\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

The Aptus, having an advanced on-board operating system, allows a fair amount of customization to the parameters that are tagged to the raw file.
Sharpening wise you can choose anything from No Sharpening to Portrait to Product (crunchier look) and the same goes for Contrast.
Colour Management can be turned off or you can utilize a whole set of Input profiles and working spaces. This is unique to the Aptus.
When working tethered, most backs will offer more or less the same options for setting up i.e colour, contrast and sharpening.

Yair
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eronald
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« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2006, 07:13:08 PM »
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I've been playing some more with those P30 files I got via the nice folks from Capture Integration. These files are decent fashion samples, which is exactly what I was looking for. You can request them from ChrisLawery:   chris at captureintegration dot com

Color, skin texture are impressive. Sharpness seems lower than that of the Aptus 65/H2 shots I took myself. I tried to use a no-sharpen in Raw, sharpen in PS approach across the board.

However, sharpness was SUBSTANTIALLY IMPROVED when using Raw Developer rather than C1. And in fact the color from Raw Developer seems better too, fewer color artefacts in the shadows.

I would be interested in finding out whether others here have found sharpness improvements outside C1, and whether sharpening is usually necessary with digital backs ?

Edmund
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rethmeier
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« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2006, 07:22:58 PM »
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The Capture One V4 is going to be a major improvement on the current version.
It is a well known fact that C1 is trailing a bit against Raw Developer etc.

Don't forget the guys at Raw Dev were working at Phase previously.
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Willem Rethmeier
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MarkKay
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« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2006, 07:25:38 PM »
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I have not used Capture but very impressed with Raw Developer.  Edmund i am happy to send you some aptus 65 files

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Anyone with more Leaf or Aptus samples ? Models only, no still lives !

I'm looking at the P30, with its microlenses vs. the Aptus 65 at the moment. I'm also looking at Raw Developer vs Capture. Interestingly, Raw Developer is winning at the moment

BTW, has anyone ever tried a P30 on an Alpa ?  I wonder how bad the casts are with this "fashion contraption".

Edmund
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rethmeier
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« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2006, 07:28:55 PM »
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Raw Developer is very good!
It's up to the Phase boys to make their Capture One No1 again!

Especially with their + backs coming out next year!
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Willem Rethmeier
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eronald
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« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2006, 02:56:08 AM »
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Mark,

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I have not used Capture but very impressed with Raw Developer.  Edmund i am happy to send you some aptus 65 files
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Thank you for the kind offer - images of legal model age women please. I'm interested in skin tone because that is where my Canon cameras are weakest. No still lives.  

You can use [a href=\"http://www.yousendit.com]http://www.yousendit.com[/url] to send me the files to edmundronald at gmail dot com

Edmund
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digitalguy
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« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2006, 10:49:11 AM »
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Mark,
Thank you for the kind offer - images of legal model age women please. I'm interested in skin tone because that is where my Canon cameras are weakest. No still lives. 

You can use http://www.yousendit.com to send me the files to edmundronald at gmail dot com

Edmund
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I have gone to a few Phase One Road Show seminars and learned quite a bit as well as spent some time with a dealer recently. There are so many features in the Capture One software that really optimize the performance of their backs.

It is highly recommended that you get in touch with a dealer or one their area sales managers to get a comprehensive demonstration. As technical as you may be, having a demo performed by someone who does this day in and out will show you the full potential of the products.

Here are a few things that I have learned more recently that may assist you.

Did you adjust any of the noise control settings in Capture One Pro to see if you got better detail in your P30 images? The control for this is located in the focus check window on the Mac. There is a drop down arrow that gives you some advance image control options. This option can give you more details in the shadow areas and affect the overall image quality.

Also in Capture One you have the ability to edit any of the base profiles that are included with your Phase One back visually through the Color Editor. So if one of the portrait profiles is a little off you can correct it and resave it for future use. It is probably one of the most powerful, but under utilized tool in Capture One. To use it have an image in your preview window, and then under the image menu select Color Editor. A separate window then appears with your image in it. You then select with the eyedropper tool areas which have the shade of color you wish to edit. You may add as many points as you wish. Once you click a shade, you can narrow or widen the range on the color wheel. You can then adjust the HSL for each individual shade. At the top of the window there are two happy faces, one with the color wheel and one without. This is the way you can toggle back and forth to turn the profile on and off. Once you are satisfied you can save out the modified profile and then it can be applied in the Gray Balance menu (third icon over, looks like a CD on the Mac) under the ICC profile drop down, your modified profile will be under the other menu profiles menu choice. I have seen many examples of how this tool works such as in catalog production of jewelry, where the stones looked lifeless, you edit the colors on the stones to make the look like you want them, save out the profile and then your subsequent shots with those same color stones, automatically have the correction. Makeup color matching was another example that they showed, where they had a number of products in a scene including compacts with blush and mirrors, when they edited the blush, it was automatically corrected in the reflections. This may not work in every situation, but there are creative ways to use it to make it fit. You do not have to go into Photoshop and do mask corrections. I can go on and on, that is how cool this tool is!

Also speak to your dealer/area sales manager, as there may be some other profiles that may be out there that have not been widely distributed yet.

There are also great features that are unique to Phase One such as B&W profiles that are distributed that provide true B&W conversions that look like the traditional process.

As far as colorcast goes on the Alpa or any other technical/ultra-wide angle solution, yes you can use the LCC creator to make a custom LCC profile for the specific lens/movement combination, but Phase One has some additional profiles that correct for most of the colorcasts that you may see. These are called the “Easy Grey” profiles and work quite well. I have used them in a number of situations, and if they do not solve it you can then always create a custom LCC. Even though view cameras are not officially supported in the literature from Phase One with the P30, I have seen people use it and the results are acceptable.

Yair mentioned that their back has an OS embedded in it that will allow you to do custom things on the fly, well Phase One does this in the Capture One software. There is a feature named Styles in Capture One. The Styles feature allows you to create a combination of basically all of the settings that you have access to in the Capture One software (tone, levels, profiles, gray balance, etc.) and create a “package”. This package of settings as I like to refer to it as allows you to create custom looks and or corrections on the fly. Once you have created Style you can then set that as the default and shoot right into it so your previews come up with those settings being applied. You still have your RAW files to go back to. These can also be batch applied as well during your RAW processing to an output file as a batch.  There are several Styles included including looks like Ektachrome Agfa Look, 70’s look, and you can make your own. I saw a video at a Phase One seminar where a photographer made a ‘push’ type look and shot his fashion shoot tethered, and all the while the art director was watching the screen and seeing how the shoot would appear as the final result on screen. No developing and then taking to Photoshop and then doing all the work. It is a real time saver.

There is a technical document up on Phase One’s website that goes over a number of things that I mentioned above. It is available at :

I gained a lot of this information attending a few of the Phase One US Roadshow events that Phase One held across the US this year. I have been using Phase for many years, and until attending these events , never utilized the software or hardware to its full potential. A lot of this information is documented , but very hard to find or not explained well. There is something to be said to watching a pro in action using real life examples.


Hope this helps.


dg
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