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Author Topic: Phase One vs Hassy  (Read 4755 times)
smhoer
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« on: July 16, 2008, 08:08:14 PM »
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Hello, I am new to the forum and am planning to purchase a p45+ package or H3DII package this December.  I am coming from a 1DsII but in the past have owned 645,6x7, 4x5, 612 & 617 systems all for landscape.  I mostly sell large landscape prints to corporate collections locally and have had to stitch using Zoerk shift adapter and MF lenses to get the size I need.  I have been lucky to cultivate a network of buyers as this is a second source of income to fund my equipment addiction.  

I have had a chance to briefly play with both systems and in the fall will spend some in depth time getting familiar with them to make my final decision.  So far I see various factors coming into play for both such as integration, size/weight & workflow/software.  I am torn between both systems as they both have great strengths and some weaknesses.  I am hoping Phase One has some competitive p45+ promotions (similar to the current Hassy 1DsII trade in promotion or H3DII-31 promotion) by the time I make my purchase in mid December.

Something I noticed someone mention in a post is that the Phase One body firmware has to be done by Mamiya.  Is this true?  Is there no user firmware upgrade capability?  With a new to market camera system there are bound to be bugs (I experienced some interesting ones with my 1Ds and 1DsII.  I see the inability for me to do my own upgrade as a major inconvenience as the system evolves.


For those that own the Phase One P30+ or 45+ or the H3DII-31 or 39 please chime in with some of the key factors that led to your final decision.

So far I see the Phase One advantages as:
+Size/Weight
+Price of used lenses
+Workflow (can use ACR)
- Need for Mamiya to do firmware upgrades
-Inability to use my lee system on the 28mm w/o gaffer's tape


H3DII advantages:
+Integrated system with built in lens corrections and calibration
+Ability of 28mm to accept my Lee system
- Lens costs
- Size/weight


Your thougths?
« Last Edit: July 16, 2008, 08:09:03 PM by smhoer » Logged

Scott H.
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2008, 09:37:35 PM »
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I think you are familiar with digital and spec. P45+ and H3DII39 share the same ccd type.
I would strongly advise you test the realworld shooting. Workflow and color, contrast of both system is quite difference.
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2008, 09:47:52 PM »
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Just some comments (I shoot the P45+):

1) C1 does a better job technically with the Phase files, but workflow is still very nicely organized.

2) While they share the same chip, the P45+ can do longer exposures.

3) Myself and most others I know have reduced their use of filters with digital.  I now only cary a Polarizer (which I almost never use) and a 3-stop ND for moving water.  

Cheers,
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2008, 09:59:56 PM »
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For those that own the Phase One P30+ or 45+ or the H3DII-31 or 39 please chime in with some of the key factors that led to your final decision.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=208806\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I haven't used either backs, but used both systems.

As far as the backs go though, are you aware that exposures longer than 32 sec are impossible with all the H3DII series cameras (including the 39 and the new 50)? This used to be a major strenght of Phaseone, although it seems that this is somewhat a thing of the past with their new 65+ super expensive back.

Regarding the systems, one potential advantage of the Mamiya system is that their 28 mm lens is supposed to cover full format, while the 28 mm from Hassy is limited to the current 36x48 mm sensors. I have been using this lens on my Mamiya ZD, and it is very sharp in the center, but soft in the very corners even stopped down. That is on a 36x48 mm sensor, I am not sure I want to look at the results with larger sensors. The really usable pixel count for high quality landscape prints with that lens will probably only be around 48 MP or so.

Weight is obviously a problem with the H system, but the leaf shutter lenses do IMHO provide a slight advantage in sharpness compared to the body shutter of the Mamiya. On the other hand Mamiya is rumoured to be about to release leaf shutter lenses themselves.

It is really a hard call whether less weight or lenses shutter will provide the best advantage when doing panoramic shooting with MF gear.

Finally, one aspect which is very rarely commented about in the MF world is real life battery life in cold weather. I have had comments from both Hassy and Phase shooters that it was OK, but nobody could really provide a clear figure about the number of frames than can be shot at -10C with both systems.

All in all, my personnal conclusion is that the best way to use these high resolutions back for landscape is probably on a pancake LF body like the Cambo WS, Alpa or new Sinar. Only those lenses can really do justice to the backs.

But then again, are these backs really worth it compared to the soon to be released D3x and Sony FF bodies? Only future will tell but I personnaly wouldn't invest in one without a prior good comparion with 35 mm FF. It really depends whether you want to stitch or not. If you belong to the stitching parts, then 35 mm FF is probably a much better deal for most landscape applications.

Cheers,
Bernard
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A few images online here!
bradleygibson
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2008, 11:39:48 PM »
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All excellent backs--I can't imagine you being disappointed with the back whichever way you went.

Consider the lenses you'll be using on whichever platform you'll go with; the ergonomics, reliability and availability of loaners/replacements if you have need of them.  Do you need long exposures?  Automatic software correction of lenses?  GPS?  Are there any issues arising for you from a focal plane shutter vs. a leaf shutter?

I think the decisive criteria will come down to something other than image quality, given that the Hassy and Phase 39-megapixel backs are very close.

Hope that helps,
Brad
« Last Edit: July 16, 2008, 11:41:08 PM by bradleygibson » Logged

mcfoto
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« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2008, 04:26:49 AM »
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Hi
I would wait till Sept. I am interested to see what Hasselblad will do with the TBA FF sensor? Does that mean they make a new 28 mm lens or use the existing one? I use Mamiya & am very happy with the system.
Denis
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Denis Montalbetti
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Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2008, 05:02:26 AM »
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Hello, I am new to the forum and am planning to purchase a p45+ package or H3DII package this December.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

How did you narrow choice down to these two? By December, there will already be better options from both these players, and others.

Why use an SLR at all if you are just shooting landscape? The large format digital lenses are the best landscape lenses there are. Have a look at a digital view camera like the new Sinar arTec: [a href=\"http://www.sinarcameras.com/site/index__0-e-2019-50-2158.html]http://www.sinarcameras.com/site/index__0-...19-50-2158.html[/url]

I agree with Jack that a Lee filter system has little value for a digital system. All you really need is polarizers and NDs. Everything else can be done better in Photoshop.
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Graham Mitchell - www.graham-mitchell.com
smhoer
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« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2008, 07:05:43 AM »
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Just some comments (I shoot the P45+):

1) C1 does a better job technically with the Phase files, but workflow is still very nicely organized.

2) While they share the same chip, the P45+ can do longer exposures.

3) Myself and most others I know have reduced their use of filters with digital. I now only cary a Polarizer (which I almost never use) and a 3-stop ND for moving water.

Cheers,
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=208822\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Hi Jack, are you doing this with HDR?  I have been playing with Photomatix on on old multiple exposure files and, except for wave action, see how I could leave my GNDs at home much of the time.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2008, 07:13:59 AM by smhoer » Logged

Scott H.
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2008, 07:13:17 AM »
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How did you narrow choice down to these two? By December, there will already be better options from both these players, and others.

Why use an SLR at all if you are just shooting landscape? The large format digital lenses are the best landscape lenses there are. Have a look at a digital view camera like the new Sinar arTec: http://www.sinarcameras.com/site/index__0-...19-50-2158.html

I agree with Jack that a Lee filter system has little value for a digital system. All you really need is polarizers and NDs. Everything else can be done better in Photoshop.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=208861\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Thanks Graham,
I have ruled out LF having used them before.  Although landscape is the primary use I would like something more versatile and easier to use than large format.  My backcountry camping is often with family and the time it takes to catch an image with LF versus MF SLR is too much for me.

WIth the lee system I only use GNDs and Pol.  No need for anything else with Photoshop.  I have been experimenting with HDR to replace my GND filters.  I would love to have one less piece of glass in front of my lens.  The singh-ray filters are great but often introduce flare in some situations.
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Scott H.
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2008, 07:32:26 AM »
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Mamiya requires you to send the camera in for a firmware upgrade.  This is true on all bodies up to the AFDII.  I am not sure on the AFDIII or the Phase One version.

As for filters:

I still carry the CL-PL for water, removal of glare and to pull out the greens in trees.  I also will have a ND-8 for water.  

If you shoot the P45+ on a bright day and want to use a slower shutter speed on water, you will need a ND-8 or you risk blown highlights, non recoverable.

The 28mm Mamiya can be modified to use a filter.  There is a detailed post in this form by Tim Ernst where he shows his rig.  It works fine.  It requires a while to setup, and you have to watch for reflections but you can safely use a filter on the 28mm.  

Paul C
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Paul Caldwell
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2008, 10:11:08 AM »
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Hi Jack, are you doing this with HDR? I have been playing with Photomatix on on old multiple exposure files and, except for wave action, see how I could leave my GNDs at home much of the time.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=208875\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I am not a huge fan of the over-cooked HDR images that seem all the rage right now.  For some sunrise/sunset images, I often get a good sky exposure and still have enough file to sufficiently pull up the darker foreground.  HOWEVER, when there is detailed subject matter of importance in the foreground and a higher contrast ratio, I'll usually take two frames and blend them manually in CS.  This works better than a SND as it's easy to get the blend line right at the horizon instead of just straight, and with proper exposures the amount of exposure difference is always perfect  

Cheers,
« Last Edit: July 17, 2008, 10:11:44 AM by Jack Flesher » Logged

smhoer
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« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2008, 01:11:56 PM »
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I am not a huge fan of the over-cooked HDR images that seem all the rage right now.  For some sunrise/sunset images, I often get a good sky exposure and still have enough file to sufficiently pull up the darker foreground.  HOWEVER, when there is detailed subject matter of importance in the foreground and a higher contrast ratio, I'll usually take two frames and blend them manually in CS.  This works better than a SND as it's easy to get the blend line right at the horizon instead of just straight, and with proper exposures the amount of exposure difference is always perfect  

Cheers,
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Thanks Jack,
By the way, I believe some of your posts in the DPReview alternative forums have led to some expensive (but very good) purshases for me.  Were you in involved in the discussion about Zeiss wides on Canon 1ds?  I also believe you had some discussions around the Zoerk pan/shift adapter which I purchased and have had many sales of stitched 60" pans resulting from its use.  I thank you but my banker (wife) does not.

I have been using Photomatix and some of the techniques shown here [a href=\"http://www.naturescapes.net/072006/rh0706_1.htm]http://www.naturescapes.net/072006/rh0706_1.htm[/url]
and have been having very good success at keeping the exposures natural looking.  It is a pain and I also often revert to blending to fix certain image areas.
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Scott H.
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2008, 02:06:33 PM »
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Thanks Jack,
By the way, I believe some of your posts in the DPReview alternative forums have led to some expensive (but very good) purshases for me. ~~ I thank you but my banker (wife) does not.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes I was one of the early adopters of third-party glass on the 1Ds as we were looking for decent wides.  I also used the Zoerk for a bit for stitching to get higher resolution, along with several other various solutions...  Re the wife/banker, unfortunately I hear this a lot...

Here is an example of a two frame blend I did in CS, click the thumbs for full images:

Foreground exposure: [a href=\"http://forum.getdpi.com/gallery/showimage.php?i=233&c=14][/url]

Sky exposure:

Final:

I think Photomatix is a good tool if used well. Nothing against it, I just don't use it simply because I am comfortable with my CS technique.  Toward the end of this discussion, I give an example where I felt Photomatix didn't add much of anything -- IOW a lot of extra work went into getting a final image that probably didn't require it: http://forum.getdpi.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2417&page=2

Cheers,
« Last Edit: July 17, 2008, 02:21:00 PM by Jack Flesher » Logged

MarkKay
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« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2008, 03:59:20 PM »
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I as am guilty as others sometimes overcooking my HDR images.  I still prefer using my GND filters when  shooting windy scenes that would include foliage, seas, or even clouds.

Quote
I am not a huge fan of the over-cooked HDR images that seem all the rage right now.  For some sunrise/sunset images, I often get a good sky exposure and still have enough file to sufficiently pull up the darker foreground.  HOWEVER, when there is detailed subject matter of importance in the foreground and a higher contrast ratio, I'll usually take two frames and blend them manually in CS.  This works better than a SND as it's easy to get the blend line right at the horizon instead of just straight, and with proper exposures the amount of exposure difference is always perfect  

Cheers,
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=208916\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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Juanito
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« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2008, 05:49:18 PM »
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If it was me, I'd save my C-notes and go with the Mamiya system and either a Leaf or Phase back. There's so much more gear available on the used market and the prices are fairly reasonable. The only reason I went with the Hassie H system is for that damn leaf shutter which you don't need for shooting landscapes.

I personally don't trust Hassleblad with their new closed system. My one photographer friend that has the H3 + back has already had to send it in for repairs. (He's complained about other issues with the files too.) I wouldn't want to be tied to Hassie with camera and back and all that money spent on an asset that will depreciate way too fast.

John
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