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Author Topic: Print you say...  (Read 9538 times)
elf
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« on: March 14, 2010, 08:14:41 PM »
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What's New: '15 March, 2010 - The Top Two Things You Can't Do On the Internet'  seems to be saying a large print will show an obvious difference between MF and DSLRs.  My question is: Was the author involved in the G10 vs MF test done by Michael several years ago or was he just ignoring it?  
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tom b
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« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2010, 09:20:49 PM »
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Quote from: elf
What's New: '15 March, 2010 - The Top Two Things You Can't Do On the Internet'  seems to be saying a large print will show an obvious difference between MF and DSLRs.  My question is: Was the author involved in the G10 vs MF test done by Michael several years ago or was he just ignoring it?  

The original article is here:

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/kidding.shtml

Cheers,
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michael
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« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2010, 09:42:24 PM »
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Possibly you didn't notice that Anonymous wrote that the difference are visible in 16X20 and larger prints.

The prints used in the G10 comparison were quite a bit smaller than that.

Michael
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elf
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« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2010, 10:24:35 PM »
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Quote from: michael
Possibly you didn't notice that Anonymous wrote that the difference are visible in 16X20 and larger prints.

The prints used in the G10 comparison were quite a bit smaller than that.

Michael

[!--quoteo(post=0:date=:name=You_ve Got to be Kidding!)--][div class=\'quotetop\']QUOTE (You_ve Got to be Kidding!)[div class=\'quotemain\'][!--quotec--]"In every case no one could reliably tell the difference between 13X19" prints shot with the $40,000 Hasselblad and Phase One 39 Megapixel back, and the new $500 Canon G10."[/quote]
Hmmmm.  16x20 doesn't seem to be that much bigger when you consider the size of the G10 sensor compared to current 35mm sensored DSLRs.

I wonder how close the print comparison would be between a 400mp D3X stitched image and an MF print?  

In any case, if there truly is a difference between the prints it should be quantifiable.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2010, 10:25:09 PM by elf » Logged
JamiePeters
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« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2010, 10:57:40 PM »
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The whole idea is to compare apples to apples.  So you get real comparison.  Or maybe we should take a stitched file from Wolcott who I just took a class from and compare that to stitched 35mm stitch.  The whole idea is that photographers whether pro or working towards that or just a very accomplished ameture is that they use the equipment they can either afford and carry.  I would like to use a P45 like Michael and Tim Wolcott but I'm too small.  Unless I carry very little gear.  You should be more focused on creating the best images possible with the gear you have.  To much emphasis is put on tech.  Tech will never replace the art to SEE.  I think Michael should end this stupid thread!  Let's get back to the basics.  JP


Quote from: elf
Hmmmm.  16x20 doesn't seem to be that much bigger when you consider the size of the G10 sensor compared to current 35mm sensored DSLRs.

I wonder how close the print comparison would be between a 400mp D3X stitched image and an MF print?  

In any case, if there truly is a difference between the prints it should be quantifiable.
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Jeremy Payne
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« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2010, 11:04:56 PM »
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I don't get the point of the article.  Has anyone been arguing that you wouldn't see "a difference" in very large prints?  I don't think so.

What people were questioning was a claimed advantage of 6 full stops of usable dynamic range ... not some ineffable and sublime difference only seen in very large prints.

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Ray
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« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2010, 11:08:50 PM »
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Quote from: michael
Possibly you didn't notice that Anonymous wrote that the difference are visible in 16X20 and larger prints.

The prints used in the G10 comparison were quite a bit smaller than that.

Michael


Michael, there's no doubt that that the larger format, higher pixel-count camera favours the larger print. If the the 13"x19" prints in your G10/P45+ comparison had been 24"x32", I'm sure everyone would have noticed the superior qualities in the print from the P45+, viewing the larger prints from the same distance as the A3+ print.

The interesting question is, if the viewing distance had been increased in proportion to the increase in print size, as should normally be the case in order to appreciate the composition rather than to pixel peep, would the results of your comparison, using the larger prints, have been similar? (Of course, in order to arrange this, you'd probably have to create a barrier between the viewer and the print so no-one could get closer than, say, 5ft.)

The most interesting aspect of your G10/P45 comparison was the fact that you didn't tell viewers which print was from which camera. This condition is vitally important for any comparison which claims to be objective.

We're all susceptible to some degree to the placebo effect, and none of us want to appear a bit dumb by telling the truth that we can discern no significant difference between two products that are claimed or supposed to have a quality difference.
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deejjjaaaa
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« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2010, 11:17:48 PM »
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Quote from: Jeremy Payne
I don't get the point of the article.  Has anyone been arguing that you wouldn't see "a difference" in very large prints?  I don't think so.

What people were questioning was a claimed advantage of 6 full stops of usable dynamic range ... not some ineffable and sublime difference only seen in very large prints.

that is suggested to us instead of the raw files to show 6 stops difference in DR, don't you get it ? if you can't show raws, if you can't beat the math - then just put some smoke, talk about prints, Mark's PhD, etc
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Dale Allyn
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« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2010, 02:53:26 AM »
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For what it's worth (zero), I read most of these posts as a source of distraction, learning and entertainment – in no particular order. I have a fairly strong science background, though not anywhere near what some on these fora have, especially with regard to optics and light physics, or more particularly, science as it pertains to photographic sensors . But I must say that I feel that these past several days of "hanging people on their words" has been a bit, umm, disenchanting. It smacks of "sport-arguing" in many cases. Or worse, self-aggrandizing. Perhaps that's the goal... the game – and I'm just the dork that doesn't get it.

I read Michael's post regarding the comparison between the G10 and Phase One back when it originally posted, and even had some fun with it among friends. We all have (or I assume that we do) images which look startlingly-good for the capture device used. I know that I do –do you? Michael seemed to have such an image, got an idea to have some fun with it, and at the same time create some content for his site –giving many of us yet a new morsel of entertainment. And now some of us are attempting to hang him or his friends on the very words that provided us with a pleasant distraction. Seems odd and out of place to me.

Mark D. chose some words, and perhaps worse, shared an anecdote of dubious value to the post, that seemed a bit out of character for someone of such understanding of things technical and such. So what? Those particular passages weren't his brightest moments, but I for one, will admit to having many such moments. Jeez guys, please lighten up. Mark has shown through his imagery that he understands many things about photography. And he is willing to share his experiences with us. His experiences should be heard and added to our pool of knowledge. Let's not take ourselves too seriously.

Having said all this (of little value, I'm sure) I must admit that some of the posts in the various related threads have been either enlightening or entertaining.

I'm fortunate to have friends with whom I can share ideas about photography... like "here's an image from a Canon s300 P&S and one from a 5D, can you tell which is which..." without being hung on any words that might come up during the dialogue. We enjoy sharing observations. Sure, Michael presents his "product" as that of an expert, but he has also been friendly about it –always saying that the forum should be like one's living room. That's not been the atmosphere of late, in my opinion.

I thought the article posted by "Anonymous" was well stated. It's not for everyone, but it fits for some. Well, it fits for me, because I print. I have DSLRs and Phase One MFD and can see the differences immediately. For me, and my purposes MFD is better. Is it dynamic range? Is it resolution? Is it software, color-rendition, micro-contrast? I don't care, even though I CAN see where the differences are. It doesn't matter. There's no point in trying to push it on others. It may not show up at all in the work of others, and if that's the case, then one is really smart to avoid the expense and other shortcomings of MFD. That's not so hard, is it?

I guess I'm rambling on here because it's late and I'm tired, but I find it disappointing that so many would expend energy ranting on such things as "MFD vs. DSLRs" or whatever the issue is. We have choices. Some folks express opinions or share experiences related to various gear. That's great, but in the end, one should use what best suits their pursuit of the photograph. Or is that no longer the goal? The photograph? It is for me.

(edit: typo)
« Last Edit: March 15, 2010, 03:00:46 AM by DFAllyn » Logged

NikoJorj
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« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2010, 04:14:30 AM »
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Quote from: Jeremy Payne
What people were questioning was a claimed advantage of 6 full stops of usable dynamic range ...
Oh, no please, don't put the coin in that slot!  
Well, I'd thought it is now well established that such quanticized statements are a bit out of reach, and that some qualitative statements are already accepted.

Whet interests me much more in the debate is to assess a bit less hazily where is the difference ; even for me who probably won't ever touch let alone buy a MFDB, knowing the weaknesses of my images can be a great help to make them (a bit) better.
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Nicolas from Grenoble
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« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2010, 05:00:01 AM »
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My very fundamental question is about making comparisons or more about why there seems to be agreement things are not comparable (I'm not stating that this is something very easy to do)?

There ARE many variables in the whole chain, but in the end, NOTHING MORE and EXACTLY the pixels are going to be outputted.



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Dave Millier
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« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2010, 06:03:29 AM »
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Quote from: Jeremy Payne
I don't get the point of the article.  Has anyone been arguing that you wouldn't see "a difference" in very large prints?  I don't think so.

What people were questioning was a claimed advantage of 6 full stops of usable dynamic range ... not some ineffable and sublime difference only seen in very large prints.


I get the feeling from this article and the various discussions about the 6 stop dynamic range claim that we seem to have moved into surreal land where any point can now be conclusively proved by simply re-stating it in a louder voice.

Perhaps we should just rewind the tape a little, pretend that many of the claims originally made had been said by someone else and just get our heads down and produce some nice old fashioned data before saying anything further?  Credibility seems to be the main victim of recent events, whatever the final conclusions...
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Ronny Nilsen
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« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2010, 06:28:54 AM »
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In "The Demon Haunted World" by Carl Sagan, he gave us a fine Baloney Detection Toolkit.

The following are suggested as tools for testing arguments and detecting fallacious or fraudulent arguments:

    * Wherever possible there must be independent confirmation of the facts
    * Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.
    * Arguments from authority carry little weight (in science there are no "authorities").
    * Spin more than one hypothesis - don't simply run with the first idea that caught your fancy.
    * Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it's yours.
    * Quantify, wherever possible.
    * If there is a chain of argument every link in the chain must work.
    * "Occam's razor" - if there are two hypothesis that explain the data equally well choose the simpler.
    * Ask whether the hypothesis can, at least in principle, be falsified (shown to be false by some unambiguous test). In other words, it is testable? Can others duplicate the experiment and get the same result?

Additional issues are

    * Conduct control experiments - especially "double blind" experiments where the person taking measurements is not aware of the test and control subjects.
    * Check for confounding factors - separate the variables.

Common fallacies of logic and rhetoric

    * Ad hominem - attacking the arguer and not the argument.
    * Argument from "authority".
    * Argument from adverse consequences (putting pressure on the decision maker by pointing out dire consequences of an "unfavourable" decision).
    * Appeal to ignorance (absence of evidence is not evidence of absence).
    * Special pleading (typically referring to god's will).
    * Begging the question (assuming an answer in the way the question is phrased).
    * Observational selection (counting the hits and forgetting the misses).
    * Statistics of small numbers (such as drawing conclusions from inadequate sample sizes).
    * Misunderstanding the nature of statistics (President Eisenhower expressing astonishment and alarm on discovering that fully half of all Americans have below average intelligence!)
    * Inconsistency (e.g. military expenditures based on worst case scenarios but scientific projections on environmental dangers thriftily ignored because they are not "proved&quotEye-wink.
    * Non sequitur - "it does not follow" - the logic falls down.
    * Post hoc, ergo propter hoc - "it happened after so it was caused by" - confusion of cause and effect.
    * Meaningless question ("what happens when an irresistible force meets an immovable object?).
    * Excluded middle - considering only the two extremes in a range of possibilities (making the "other side" look worse than it really is).
    * Short-term v. long-term - a subset of excluded middle ("why pursue fundamental science when we have so huge a budget deficit").
    * Slippery slope - a subset of excluded middle - unwarranted extrapolation of the effects (give an inch and they will take a mile).
    * Confusion of correlation and causation.
    * Straw man - caricaturing (or stereotyping) a position to make it easier to attack..
    * Suppressed evidence or half-truths.
    * Weasel words - for example, use of euphemisms for war such as "police action" to get around limitations on Presidential powers. "An important art of politicians is to find new names for institutions which under old names have become odious to the public"

Above all - read the book!
« Last Edit: March 15, 2010, 06:30:06 AM by Ronny Nilsen » Logged

feppe
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« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2010, 06:31:04 AM »
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Quote from: Ronny Nilsen
In "The Demon Haunted World" by Carl Sagan, he gave us a fine Baloney Detection Toolkit.

That is... uncanny: literally a minute ago I referred to the exact same book on another thread about the article.

Great minds *mumble mumble*
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Jeremy Payne
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« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2010, 06:55:08 AM »
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Quote from: NikoJorj
Well, I'd thought it is now well established that such quanticized statements are a bit out of reach, and that some qualitative statements are already accepted.

Is that so?  Then why did Michael choose to write this?

"Tests done by me in the past, as well as others more recently, show that DSLRs have a dynamic range of 6–7 stops while top medium format backs are in the 12-13 stop range. This is using the common definition of DR as mentioned above. The exact numbers are open to some debate because of the subjective aspect of the test, but usually a one stop differential is the most seen between testers or test runs. "

It would have been easy for Mark and Michael to say what you just said.

They didn't.

To the poster who said we all have choices ... we do ... and Michael and Mark have made some strange ones lately.

As such, many of us are eagerly awaiting the proof ...  
« Last Edit: March 15, 2010, 06:55:43 AM by Jeremy Payne » Logged
Jeremy Payne
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« Reply #15 on: March 15, 2010, 07:02:01 AM »
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Quote from: DFAllyn
Mark D. chose some words, and perhaps worse, shared an anecdote of dubious value to the post, that seemed a bit out of character for someone of such understanding of things technical and such. So what?

Sure ... so why not do what we all do when we mis-speak?

I would have said something like: "You're right, I was being hyperbolic for effect ... there is a visible difference in DR, but is it 6-7 stops?  Probably not - we should do a test to quantify that number."

How hard would that have been?  Instead, they dug in.  

Ok ... that's all fine ... but now anyone who challenges this stubborn claim is somehow "misbehaving in the living room"?

Please.
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fredjeang
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« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2010, 07:05:43 AM »
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Hi,
I do not own actually a Medium Format, but I've been working enough time in the recent past in advertising agencies as a designer to be able to mesure the differences between each system in real work situations.
In that jobs, you deal with any type of files, from LF to crooped dslr sensors. The pictures are taken by professional photographers and we were working exclusively in CMYK, except when we were working with Flash and derivated applications.

I fully agree with the content of this "anonymous" article.
There is a huge difference when someone is working for himself to build his portfolio or in and for little structures, than when you start to work for industrial and commercial advertising in agencies, big art galleries etc...
1) By no means, it exists the situation where you going to make a Chanel campaign with a dslr; even if it reaches the DR of MFD. It is the same for arquitecture, manufactured products, contemporary art in general etc...(it can happen, but it is not very common).
2) By no means, it exists the situation where you are going to work for a newspaper and cover a war with a 4x5 field camera either.  
Each system is perfectly valid.

All this debate came from a perceived problem of exageration in DR, and the forum lines have been inundated by physics, curves, DoX, etc...in order to prove the correct information and rectifiy the heresy; not without sometimes denigration or attacks towards Marc Dubovoy and Michael Reichmann, that certainly known much more than a lot of us here and have an all life experience in photography as professionals, to at least being considered not too badly informed... I also noticed that the real experienced and professional photographers of this forum have not participated in this debate or in a very discrete form.
That was sad but very informative. It's the first time I join a Forum, I do not have the time normaly, and I stupidly put myself in this kind of thread. I did not know what it was, now at least I know what is all about.
After reading all the posts, physics ecuations and mathematics calculations, am I better informed? Not at all. Exactly like before.
Well, in fact, I know now that dslr are not that bad and MFD are not that great...and that DoX is the new religion.
Sorry, but behind the excuse of "wrong information about DR" it was indeed an hidden discution about who has got the bigger one and an open gate for provocators and as pointed, neurotic posers. I have absolutely no doubt about that these kind of thread end like that, no doubt either that this article will be severely banned but that's the way things are. I'm sure at least that some people, like it is my case, found it pertinent and appropriate.

Back in the article, the biggest difference between a dslr and a MFD I saw when I was designer is the capacity to handle severe post production process.
This is where really the gap is. Also of course in big prints (I'm talking about big prints), but that is obvious and have never been contradicted.
Well, the capacity that have the MFD files to be mistreated is simply amazing. That is required in fashion, in advertising in general, and that is the very first reason (but not the only one) why MFD is prefered for certain type of work.
It is obvious that this characteristic of MF is not and has not been measured, but the flexibility that gives you the MFD in post production, the hability to recuperate delicate situations or to be severely pushed is indeed much more important than with a dslr. There is no comparaison and it is fine.
I also heard some saying that the differences are only visible in big prints: Wrong, the differences are visible right in the web.
When we where working in Low-def for flash, every single designer was able to notice the differences between MFD files and smaller format.
The ones who claim the opposite are just not enough trained to perceive them.

Now, each system is perfect, there are just different.

Best regards,

Fred.




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Jeremy Payne
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« Reply #17 on: March 15, 2010, 07:38:43 AM »
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Quote from: fredjeang
DoX is the new religion.

Fred, you have it backwards.  

There is science and there is faith and you have ascribed faith to the wrong side of the argument.

You, however, have declared over and over that you will believe anything Michael says.

So, yes ... there is a new religion ... but DxO ain't part of it.
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fredjeang
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« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2010, 07:52:52 AM »
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Quote from: Jeremy Payne
Fred, you have it backwards.  

There is science and there is faith and you have ascribed faith to the wrong side of the argument.

You, however, have declared over and over that you will believe anything Michael says.

So, yes ... there is a new religion ... but DxO ain't part of it.
Jeremy, the article was not writen by Michael and I did not declare that they were scientificly right, what I did say yes is that I thing and I know that Michael and others are pretty well informed and are experienced enough that I give them at least good credit. And if they make mistakes and rectify, for me it's fine.
If I do not agree with Michael, and it has happened, I say it as clearly as when I do agree.
Simply, if I ask myself the question: with who would I like to do a workshop, or been trained in order to improve my technic ? Michael would be high on my list. He is not the only one, but I would certainly (and actually I do throughout this website) learn a lot from his knowledge.
If I was an executive in photographic industry and need some consulting, he would be also high on my list. I'm not the only one to consider this, as he actually do so currently. People fully involved in the industry fully trust him like people trust Mark, for a reason I guess.
So, an error or exageration (if there is) in an article for me does not affect my position.

Fred.
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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #19 on: March 15, 2010, 08:16:23 AM »
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This whole discussion is highly reminiscent of what was talked about regarding high-end audio components and the transition from analogue to digital some two decades ago.  The crux of the problem is objective engineering measurements versus subjective perception.  The objectivists point to data that shows two things (digital sensors, amplifiers, you name it) to be either equal to or very close in specifications.  The subjectivist says that there is a real difference in the output (image or sound).  The subjectivists spend lots of money on things that either show real improvement (medium format cameras) or things that don't (gold interconnect cables, amplifiers costing tens of thousands of $$$ but show no difference in blind testing).  Claims are made by people with PhDs after their name (I have one but don't make any claims!!  ) and those that have many years of experience with the technology (but not possessing a technical degree).  Some of the claims are correct, some are not.

Neither side is right or wrong as it's always difficult to reconcile these differing approaches.  I think we have to take pleasure in the work that we do and accept both the criticism and plaudits from those that view the images, because after all that's what it's all about.

As an aside, doing any kind of scientific research on subjective end points is extraordinarily difficult.  Even if one can design an appropriate protocol, it will still be criticized for some reason (it's why nobody from the subjective camp has accepted blinded listening tests of audio components).

Finally, as one who is willing to listen and learn, I find that these discussions are very informative.
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