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Author Topic: How many pixels actually?  (Read 20360 times)
dalethorn
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« Reply #40 on: May 03, 2008, 07:19:18 AM »
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Two things: One, some small cameras shoot RAW (Pana FZ50 for example), and I use it, and it makes a real difference, and when you consider that the *only* reason the mfr's leave it out on some advanced P&S models is due to their cynical view that naive users will ask too many questions, well that's really pathetic.  Item 2: I've developed my own B&W for years, used "zone system" to some extent, have even produced apparent "grain-free" 11x14's from Minox 9mm. My observation of low-ISO color slides and prints from Leica M cameras is they look different from digital unless both film and digital output are viewed at reduced size or sufficient distance to make the underlying structure invisible. My experience in making fixes to digital images tells me there's a subconscious threshold factor, so viewing for film -vs- digital to obscure the grain etc. would have to take place at 4x or more reductions from maximum image size, otherwise your brain would still see the differences.
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Tony Beach
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« Reply #41 on: May 03, 2008, 09:25:35 AM »
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My observation of low-ISO color slides and prints from Leica M cameras is they look different from digital unless both film and digital output are viewed at reduced size or sufficient distance to make the underlying structure invisible. My experience in making fixes to digital images tells me there's a subconscious threshold factor, so viewing for film -vs- digital to obscure the grain etc. would have to take place at 4x or more reductions from maximum image size, otherwise your brain would still see the differences.
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You compared the color slides to which digital camera's files?  Did you use the same lens in the comparison?  How do you know you weren't comparing lenses and processing rather than digital compared to film?  That's why Thom Hogan's experience carries more weight with me here; he uses the same lenses (Nikkors) in his comparisons, he is also very knowledgeable about post processing.
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dalethorn
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« Reply #42 on: May 03, 2008, 04:49:12 PM »
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I would expect after 30-plus years of film and 15-plus years of digital processing, with the highly exacting work I've described, you might assume I can tell the difference between grain, pixellation and noise, and lens crud (to use a crude term), but apparently that's not the case. Maybe I should have taken up knitting?
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Tony Beach
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« Reply #43 on: May 03, 2008, 05:30:08 PM »
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I would expect after 30-plus years of film and 15-plus years of digital processing, with the highly exacting work I've described, you might assume I can tell the difference between grain, pixellation and noise, and lens crud (to use a crude term), but apparently that's not the case. Maybe I should have taken up knitting?
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Maybe you could just specify what camera and lens you are comparing the film and Leica lenses to.  Better still, you can also show examples so we can make direct comparisons for ourselves.  For now (considering what you have written so far in this thread) I wonder if you are comparing a P&S digicam to a Leica, and that would be a ludicrous comparison and would tell us nothing.
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dalethorn
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« Reply #44 on: May 03, 2008, 06:19:50 PM »
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My main point in posting is to help people, who might then help me. But nothing I do will help you, in spite of all my experience and wealth (of knowledge, funds, and equipment). I hope your trust in Thom pays off - he seems like a better than average pundit as pundits go, but I doubt he has anywhere near the depth I have.
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dalethorn
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« Reply #45 on: May 03, 2008, 06:49:52 PM »
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Addendum: I've put my negatives and slides under a Wilde microscope for inspection - if you've seen such a thing you won't forget what grain looks like. I don't have a slide scanner but:  1) I could buy one just to supply a pic and impress Tony,  or  2) If I did that, would the scan be a true representation of the film grain? I dunno - haven't tried, don't really care.
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Tony Beach
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« Reply #46 on: May 03, 2008, 07:40:18 PM »
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I hope your trust in Thom pays off - he seems like a better than average pundit as pundits go, but I doubt he has anywhere near the depth I have.
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He has one thing on you in spades -- humility.  I become immediately suspicious of arrogant postings claiming a wealth of expertise from someone with no website, no biography, and whose only bona fides are a couple of mediocre bird shots.

Now lets see how this "Ignore User" feature works" -- bye.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2008, 07:53:49 PM by Tony Beach » Logged
dalethorn
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« Reply #47 on: May 03, 2008, 08:43:00 PM »
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Now I remember Tony - the professional skeptic. The skeptics' rules:  Admit nothing.  Deny everything.  When cornered, demand proof, then refuse to accept it.  Now my feelings are hurt Tony. Please come back.
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John Clifford
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« Reply #48 on: October 06, 2008, 03:28:04 PM »
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Quote from: Tony Beach
The biggest problem with Foveon sensors is that they get noisy at relatively modest ISOs; which is another way that my D300 kicks butt on both Sigma DSLRs and film.

Hmmm... that's not what I've found. I picked up a Pentax K20D, a 14MP camera that will do as good or better than a D300, because I wanted something 'better' than my Sigma SD14 in terms of resolution and camera functionality. In short, I wanted a dSLR that would not have the limitations of the SD14.

The K20D is a pretty amazing camera, and because it will also take M42 lenses, I can shoot the same scene with the same lens with both the SD14 and the K20D. What have I found?

I've found that the SD14 is VERY competitive with the K20D in terms of actual resolved detail and image quality. In fact, I'd give the nod to the SD14. Where the K20D excels is in better/faster AF, in-camera image stabilization (handheld shots with a 300mm lens at low shutter speeds are very sharp), and multiple shot capabilities (for bracketing and capturing action). With the latest firmware the SD14 is excellent at ISO 200 and below, very good at ISO 400, and acceptable at ISO 800, while the K20D is excellent at ISO 400 and below, very good at ISO 800, and acceptable at ISO 1600. In other words, you get one extra stop of 'film' speed.

I'd characterize the SD14 as my 'Kodachrome/Velvia' camera... sort of like a medium format manual focus/exposure camera. When I can take the time to think about a picture, the SD14 allows me to obtain superlative results in terms of color and resolution. The K20D is more of a 'chromogenic' camera in that I can get good results while having more latitude with exposure. Pixel for pixel (shooting a 100mm lens on the SD14 and a 50mm lens on the K20D, and cropping the same # of pixels out of the center of the K20D image), the SD14 is sharper.

My plan for the K20D is for 'action' type photography, like air shows, sports, etc. I'll continue to use my SD14 for landscapes, scenics, etc., or anywhere where I can be more deliberative. When I take the time to make a 2x2 multi-row panorama, the resulting 14 MP SD14 image blows any other dSLR away, not excepting the high-end Canons.

BTW, I think the SD14/K20D combo is worth considering. Both cameras can share the same batteries, use the same (M42) lenses, etc. And, I also think that Sigma and Pentax have both done a good job of putting forth the qualities (and implicitly, for Sigma, the limitations) of their respective products.

An example of the same subject with two different cameras:

Pentax K20D:


Sigma SD14:


Which one do you like better?
« Last Edit: October 06, 2008, 03:39:24 PM by John Clifford » Logged

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dalethorn
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« Reply #49 on: October 06, 2008, 08:25:02 PM »
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After adjusting the darker image, the leaves looked about the same, but the darker background detail was pretty well lost.
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