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Author Topic: How much better will digital get?  (Read 34565 times)
didger
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« Reply #260 on: January 04, 2005, 08:48:01 AM »
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Thanks for all that, Kevin. Those that take the time to read and think about your words should find nothing to dispute.
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These systems will always be pricey and that is because it is a limited marketplace.
This seems clear and obvious. A full on Hassie system decades ago was no cheaper than high end digital now, relative to $ value then.
I've had not a moment of regret about the money I spent for my 1ds, but I'm passing on 1ds2 for reasons already specified. Do you see MF DSLR's with the sensor quality of p25 any time in the foreseeable future? Do you see something of that quality for around $10,000 coming up in the next few years? I can't see $30,000 coming up in my life any time soon for an MF digital system. Do you have any "insider" knowledge or hunches about what to expect from Mamiya ZD? Any chance it will be somewhat comparable to basic 1ds quality, but double the effective resolution? I'd start a serious bux acquisition program for that, but $25,000 just for a back would only be realistic if I find a winning lottery ticket on the sidewalk. I assume you guys have done the necessary development and manufacturing cost/market size analyses and $25,000 is the optimal figure, but that sure is out of reach for a lot of people who otherwise don't mind spending big money for photo gear. No matter how good it is, it also has to be possible.
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didger
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« Reply #261 on: January 06, 2005, 10:01:31 PM »
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Improve either one of them, not necessarily in pixel count for the sensor but pixel quality, and you'll get sharper, better images.
Yes, this has been declared and generally agreed with (me included) countless times.  HOWEVER, just by increasing sensor resolution and/or quality you reach a point of diminishing returns, which we've already started to see with 1ds and which is dramatically noticeable with 1ds2.  At f16 with a Canon 50mm compact macro lens a 1ds2 is hardly perceptibly better than a 1ds.  No lens shorter than 35mm comes anywhere close to the quality of a Canon 50mm compact macro so what can we expect with a 1dsMKIII and wide angle lenses?  You pay the big money for the ultradense sensor, you pay the big storage overhead for the big files and the big processing overhead, but quality improvements get ever slimmer; no way to go upward except larger formats, unless you don't mind paying huge prices for ever tinier improvements.  What's the problem with larger formats, anyway?  There's better lenses available, especially at the wide end and cost is not likely to remain prohibitive very much longer, if you consider $8000 for a 35mm body not prohibitive.  Good MF wide angle primes are cheaper than mediocre 35mm wide zooms, and there's almost nothing available but zooms.  1dsMKIII?  I don't even want 1dsMKII.  I'd rather pay twice the money for something that will be twice as good as 1ds than buy a 1ds2 that's at best 50% better than 1ds, but in fact hardly ever even that much better (only with a handful of super lenses and then shot at f8 or so).
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didger
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« Reply #262 on: January 08, 2005, 10:50:50 AM »
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Well, I presume the Standfordians from the irate arguments were developing AI.
No, they were TRYING to.  They were theorizing and thinking and debating about it.  They never had a shred of any practical demonstration; just a lot of essentially blind faith.  "I'm too smart for faith in any human dimensions beyond physical, but dumb enough for blind faith in AI".  In any case, how can I be "helpful" in this effort?  How does it matter how we natter here where this effort is concerned?  Those folks thought that we'd have some serious AI long before now with computers not nearly as powerful as what we ended up with and any high school kid now has access to.  Those AI types had to re-calibrate their ambitions and so far simulating flatworm behavior is also not working out too well.  Living organisms have hidden (spiritual) dimensions that most of us can't even perceive, what to say of program digital imitations of.  Our understanding of the total human being is about as naive as the understanding that cargo cults had of airplanes, only more so.
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howard smith
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« Reply #263 on: January 09, 2005, 11:16:20 AM »
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Quality is not always proportional to price.  I don't think there are many very high quality/very low price lenses.  However, there may be expensive poor lenses.

Price is determined by other factors than quality.  If I could make a lens as good as a Zeiss, it would likely be too expensive to sell, or I would have to lose money on it.

There are also niche market products that have no real competition.  Their price is driven more by supply/demand than quaility.  I recall about 30 years ago I need a bolt to repair the clutch on my Porsche.  It cost $35.  Way too much, but there was a single supplier of a very low volume market.  The bolt was pretty much just a bolt with an odd head.  Not expra high quality.  The parts guy asked me what the car was worth with the bolt.  About $6000.  What was it worth without the bolt.  Parts.  He said the bolt was a bargain, and it was.
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Bobtrips
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« Reply #264 on: January 12, 2005, 01:59:17 PM »
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Watching what's happening at the sub-dSLR level I wouldn't be surprised if Canon/Nikon got one of their legs chewed off by PanaLeica.

The Panasonic FZ series is gaining a lot of popularity.  Good cameras with Leica glass.  

Panasonic is large enough to have the capital to push forward.  

They've tested the water with the LC1/D2 rangefinder.  While it's a vastly overpriced and a somewhat crippled camera it has displayed their ability to produce a great digital file.

They've bought into IS.  Just need to move it to the camera body.

If you were to mix in the ability of Sigma to volume produce Leica design/quality controlled lenses....
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BJL
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« Reply #265 on: January 19, 2005, 12:51:56 PM »
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Fuji want to do it all on one sensor and in a single exposure, so the highlights need to be measured with photosites packed in between the main photosites. Since the added photosites are only used to measure bright light and only need to cover a range of a few stops, they can be far smaller than the regular photosites. With Fuji's roughly octagonal photosites, the small highlight photosites seem to fit almost entirely into gaps that were there between the bigger photosites anyway.
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BJL
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« Reply #266 on: April 20, 2005, 09:30:37 AM »
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There is another interesting assessment of the limits of high resolution photography at gigapxl.org, including atmospheric effects, which are distinctly worse for terrestrial photography than with a telescope looking up through the thin, clear air from the top of a mountain.

They estimate an angular limit on resolution at 50% MTF due to atmospheric effects to about 6,000 line pairs per radian, or in other words, 6,000 line pairs across a roughly normal field of view of 57 (one radian). To be generous, about 10,000x15,000 pixels for a normal FOV would be at that limit, so maybe 150MP.

From a satellite 100Km up, that resolution limit at 50% MTF would be about one line pair per 14 meters. With the far lower MTF needed to barely resolve text, the graphs suggest a limit of about 20,000 lp/radian, still 5 meters per line pair.

Maybe on a very clear day they can see grapefruit, on the top of a mountain above all the dust and heat haze!
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