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Author Topic: Pentax: "Amateur" product means more value, less dealer margins?  (Read 21470 times)
tho_mas
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« Reply #80 on: December 16, 2010, 02:13:28 AM »
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Liveview on the Nikons and Canons is pretty good actually. Pro movie guys doing million dollar productions slap a viewing loupe on the LCD and compose and focus their takes with Liveview.
yes, compared to the low res black&white finders of other video cameras this is an improvement. But I was talking about photographs, not about video.

For me LiveView is a way of achieving dead on focus (by enlarging the focusing spot). In my view it's essential.
as I said: for focussing it's super.
I actually don't have issues to achieve accurate focus with split image screens on my Contax (shimmed to match the focus plane of my DB). And on my Cambo a laser distometer is working very good for me (if I am not shooting near or at infinity, which I do mostly).
Still... Live View would be a very welcomed improvement for me. But I would only use it for checking focus, not for composition.
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eronald
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« Reply #81 on: December 16, 2010, 02:26:15 AM »
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I once posted a dead-sharp skateboard jump image on a forum, taken with 35mm AF. Immediately all the older members of that forum explained to me that the "right" way to take this image was with prefocused MF.

The same attitude is now pervading this forum. While video shooters are getting excellent results with LiveView, older members of this forum are explaining to us that the viewfinder is the ONLY way to compose and focus.

Of course, the sellers of the mostly outdated and overpriced clattering boxen which are now called  "Professional Medium Format Cameras" cannot purchase MF sensors capable of LiveView. They state they publicly state cannot purchase decent back LCDs,  and we're not even talking about the special chips and software needed to extract and process a real-time video feed.

So we're being told that spinach is good for you because in fact there is no meat to be had.

Edmund


Same here.

I have not forgotten how it feels to come back home from that amazing shoot only to find out on screen that many of my once-in-a-life-time-light images are slightly off focus. That really was the most frustrating experience for me when using the Mamiya ZD. I couldn't help counting mentally the money I was wasting.

I have not forgotten that feeling but it has mostly not happened to me in the last 2 years.

Now on the positive side, the absence of moire/artifacts on many MF images is the result of them being slightly out of focus. Smiley

Cheers,
Bernard

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Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
John R Smith
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« Reply #82 on: December 16, 2010, 02:39:11 AM »
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Well

In my opinion (and it is only my opinion) all these things - LCDs, EVFs, liveview, are utter trash and it is impossible to compose using them in any meaningful fashion. They do not represent the world in front of ourselves and the camera with any passion or romance, merely as a clinical array of pixels which has no magic or charm.

For this reason, I will hang on to my cameras with optical viewfinders until I am too old to take pictures any more  Wink And if I get a few shots which are missing focus, well that's just tough. I'd rather have the odd missing focus than missing the magic of taking photographs.

John
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tho_mas
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« Reply #83 on: December 16, 2010, 03:00:39 AM »
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While video shooters are getting excellent results with LiveView, older members of this forum are explaining to us that the viewfinder is the ONLY way to compose and focus.
could you please point me to a respective post of one of those said older members?
Do you actually read the posts you are referring to?
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eronald
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« Reply #84 on: December 16, 2010, 03:44:54 AM »
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could you please point me to a respective post of one of those said older members?
No problem, just look at the one before the one of yours I am now replying to.

Do you actually read the posts you are referring to?
What, read other people's posts when I'm just enjoying being argumentative? Where's the fun in that ? Smiley


I understand that some users want THEIR way of doing things - that is a very reasonable point of view (pun intended). The problem is that the MF companies are insisting on doing things "the old way" and supplying junk: Which MF camera (Phase? Hassy? Leica?) lets the end-user fine-adjust lens focus, so the lens can be  electronically shimmed to the body? Which one supplies a really good back LCD? Which one has Liveview? Which one lets you pick a point on the back LCD and sets exposure and/or focus and/or white balance for that point? Why are such things BAD? Why are most of these there on 35mm cameras? The fact that John or you don't need Liveview for COMPOSING doesn't mean that youwouldn't want to focus check in the field (actually, you do),  that you gladly accept  a lens that you cannot re-shim (you shim your lenses), or that you accept an LCD as sh*tty as the Phase one and smile about it.

I did an architecture test once, comparing my Nikon to my Phamiya. The Phase back wiped the floor with the Nikon ... until I started focusing the N with Liveview. At that point the Nikon images compared pretty well - less resolution, better focus.

Edmund

PS. I am really angry about the elitist attitude which companies use to justify an inferior product. I don't complain when my electronic Leica doesn't have an SLR viewfinder. I do complain when the Leica stops working when I'm on a press trip, and the dealer tells me "oh, that happens sometimes, you just have to wait 24 hours with the battery out." If they don't want to make a working electronic camera, they shouldn't make an electronic camera.The attitude now is "Oh, we're an elite company, we build the best products, we are going to make the product, and then when people have bought into it we'll fix the issues and give them something to upgrade to".

could you please point me to a respective post of one of those said older members?
Do you actually read the posts you are referring to?
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 04:05:13 AM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
David Watson
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« Reply #85 on: December 16, 2010, 04:01:13 AM »
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Edmund

I think that you are overlooking one simple fact.

Nikon, Canon and the rest are huge companies with very big research and development budgets and massive economies of scale.  Of course Phase and Hasselblad could make a camera that addresses all these issues but the development cost would be gigantic and irrecoverable given the tiny sales volumes in comparison with the big boys.

Instead they choose to focus (pun intended) on a bit by bit (pun intended) approach to their product development whilst keeping as much of the installed user base compatible with the new models as is possible.

Having used both MF and a D3X for my work over the past year there is no question in my mind that (admittedly properly focussed) images produced on my Hasselblad are much superior to those produced by the D3X. If I were a sports or wildlife photographer I would of course be using the best 35mm but I photograph landscapes and architecture (interiors and exteriors) and for my work MF i.e. Hasselblad is the best. Incidentally I have just as many out of focus images from my D3X because of the complexity of the focussing system switching between the normal and the one used in Live view.
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David Watson ARPS
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« Reply #86 on: December 16, 2010, 04:08:23 AM »
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I have to wonder how many folk here suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
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David Watson
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« Reply #87 on: December 16, 2010, 04:18:12 AM »
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Keith

Isn't that a desirable characteristic in a photographer?
 Smiley
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David Watson ARPS
tho_mas
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« Reply #88 on: December 16, 2010, 04:24:41 AM »
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...
well, I riterate that I am finding Live View extremely useful for focus checking ... we are not in disagreement here. Not in the least. It would solve some problems for me.
But I also know that mostly achieving accurate focussing is not so much an issue for me (neither with the 645 nor the tech camera)... it requires some workarounds, though. And sometimes it's quite cumbersome. Still doable... at least if you don't have to shoot very fast (you can't with a tech camera anyway).
Of course there are also situations where it's quite hard to achieve accurate focus and you have to do some guesswork... under these circumstances I'd love to have Live View... sure! But I use a digiback model from 2005 and it simply doesn't provide Live View. Should I therefore throw it away? Again, it can be cumbersome, sometimes even more or less impossible, to achieve accurate focus. But mostly it is not.

As to the said attitude of the MFD companies ... I don't know. I don't care first of all.
I just use what is available and what I like to use for the things I do. And what I can afford, naturally.
Still like my prehistoric P45... especially when the captures are sharp ;-)





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eronald
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« Reply #89 on: December 16, 2010, 04:26:09 AM »
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David,

Edmund

I think that you are overlooking one simple fact.


Just one? You're very polite here Smiley


Nikon, Canon and the rest are huge companies with very big research and development budgets and massive economies of scale.  Of course Phase and Hasselblad could make a camera that addresses all these issues but the development cost would be gigantic and irrecoverable given the tiny sales volumes in comparison with the big boys.

Yeah, sure. Hasselblad and Leaf/Sinar (and probably Phase) already have the electronic system for shimming the lens, they just decided to make it a factory return rather than enable it for the user.

In the same way, I'm sure that Phase could change their LCD if they really wanted - surely it's easier to source a $10 LCD and implement it on all your product line than to source a $500 sensor and implement the electronics for driving it on just ONE model of the camera, and calibrate EVERY sample of the sensor before it leaves the factory?


Edmund

Having used both MF and a D3X for my work over the past year there is no question in my mind that (admittedly properly focussed) images produced on my Hasselblad are much superior to those produced by the D3X. If I were a sports or wildlife photographer I would of course be using the best 35mm but I photograph landscapes and architecture (interiors and exteriors) and for my work MF i.e. Hasselblad is the best. Incidentally I have just as many out of focus images from my D3X because of the complexity of the focussing system switching between the normal and the one used in Live view.

Hmm, you seem to have forgotten that a lot of commercial MF work does involve not wildlife but MODELS. Who do move a bit, in fact you often ASK them to move around a bit.

If you use Liveview on the dSLRs, why don't you just focus manually with Liveview? I find this works best, with architecture, and is GUARANTEED to give an image focused where you want it.  

Edmund
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Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
eronald
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« Reply #90 on: December 16, 2010, 04:37:41 AM »
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It's strange, we're actually in perfect agreement.

I think you are getting well-focused shots because you are on a tech camera, and you have good technique. I am certain that an Alpa or Arca Swiss and a Disto will get good focus every time. Notice that these are in fact in many ways more modern objects than the Phamiyas Smiley

BTW, over the years I used a bunch of samples of Phase P45+ backs, and the only one which gave me dead-sharp pictures was an old P45 that I had as a repair loaner. Suddenly all my pictures were in focus.

Edmund

well, I riterate that I am finding Live View extremely useful for focus checking ... we are not in disagreement here. Not in the least. It would solve some problems for me.
But I also know that mostly achieving accurate focussing is not so much an issue for me (neither with the 645 nor the tech camera)... it requires some workarounds, though. And sometimes it's quite cumbersome. Still doable... at least if you don't have to shoot very fast (you can't with a tech camera anyway).
Of course there are also situations where it's quite hard to achieve accurate focus and you have to do some guesswork... under these circumstances I'd love to have Live View... sure! But I use a digiback model from 2005 and it simply doesn't provide Live View. Should I therefore throw it away? Again, it can be cumbersome, sometimes even more or less impossible, to achieve accurate focus. But mostly it is not.

As to the said attitude of the MFD companies ... I don't know. I don't care first of all.
I just use what is available and what I like to use for the things I do. And what I can afford, naturally.
Still like my prehistoric P45... especially when the captures are sharp ;-)
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Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
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« Reply #91 on: December 16, 2010, 04:44:22 AM »
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Keith

Isn't that a desirable characteristic in a photographer?
 Smiley


Perfectly, although perhaps not such a desirable characteristic in a gaggle of gearheads?
 Wink
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tho_mas
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« Reply #92 on: December 16, 2010, 04:55:48 AM »
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I think you are getting well-focused shots because you are on a tech camera, and you have good technique.
attached a screenshot from Capture One showing a P21+ shot I just have at hand taken with the Contax 80mm lens @ f2.8, manually focussed using a split image screen. I could show you the same with all of my lenses at all distances from near to mid distances to infinity at all apertures.
I am sure other 645 users could also show accurately focussed captures :-) ... not just tech camera users.

Quote
BTW, over the years I used a bunch of samples of Phase P45+ backs, and the only one which gave me dead-sharp pictures was an old P45 that I had as a repair loaner. Suddenly all my pictures were in focus.
my P45 was serviced twice (incl. change of sensor mounting resp. sensor replacement). I had to re-shim my screens and re-adjust my LF lenses after each repair. Slightly... but still.

edit: BTW the registration difference has always been within the tolerances of the Contax' AF. The split image improves the fine adjustment, though.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 05:19:48 AM by tho_mas » Logged
eronald
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« Reply #93 on: December 16, 2010, 05:11:37 AM »
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It's close to infinity that one needs Liveview most, I find. Even the best mirror-based AF deserts you past 30 meters on a standard lens, I find. Sometimes you have these trees at 50 meters, background buildings at 100, and you want the trees ... or the contrary Smiley

Edmund

And yes, I believe that once upon a time OCD was useful for a photographer, because you only saw the image AFTER it was too late to retake it, and any mistake would ruin it. So you'd always have to follow all these strange rituals - eg. slap the developer tank to get rid of the bubbles on the film.

Edmund

attached a screenshot from Capture One showing a P21+ shot I just have at hand taken with the Contax 80mm lens @ f2.8, manually focussed using a split image screen. I could show you the same with all of my lenses at all distances from near to mid distances to infinity at all apertures.
I am sure other 645 users could also show accurate focussed captures :-) ... not just tech camera users.
my P45 was serviced twice (incl. change of sensor mounting resp. sensor replacement). I had to re-shim my screens and re-adjust my LF lenses after each repair. Slightly... but still.

edit: BTW the registration difference has always been within the tolerances of the Contax' AF. The split image improves the fine adjustment, though.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 05:15:07 AM by eronald » Logged

Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
tho_mas
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« Reply #94 on: December 16, 2010, 05:18:03 AM »
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It's close to infinity that one needs Liveview most, I find.
well, my split image screens do... even with the 35mm lens.

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OCD
what does this abbreviation stands for? :-)
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John R Smith
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Still crazy, after all these years


« Reply #95 on: December 16, 2010, 05:26:10 AM »
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It's close to infinity that one needs Liveview most, I find. Even the best mirror-based AF deserts you past 30 meters on a standard lens, I find. Sometimes you have these trees at 50 meters, background buildings at 100, and you want the trees ... or the contrary Smiley

And yes, I believe that once upon a time OCD was useful for a photographer, because you only saw the image AFTER it was too late to retake it, and any mistake would ruin it. So you'd always have to follow all these strange rituals - eg. slap the developer tank to get rid of the bubbles on the film.

Edmund

OCD = Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. And as Edmund says, strange rituals were once the order of the day. He is also correct, that his Liveview would be extremely useful when near infinity. However, once again I believe that (for a certain type of photography) not being able to see the image until after you process it is actually a good thing. Even though I now shoot digital MF, I find that nearly all my best shots are the ones where I only took one frame, and never bothered to check it on the LCD. I somehow know when I've nailed it. The ones where I took several frames and kept checking the result are almost always pants.

John
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 05:31:41 AM by John R Smith » Logged

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tho_mas
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« Reply #96 on: December 16, 2010, 05:37:37 AM »
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OCD = Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
got it - thanks!

Quote
He is also correct, that his Liveview would be extremely useful when near infinity.
yes, of course. However a split image screen (in a 645 camera) is also "okay". But on the tech camera focussing near infinity with somewhat longer lenses is hard (well, at least for me)... as a laser disto is hard to point and sometimes it won't work, especially in bright sunlight (admittedly I don't use a D5). Too, I am quite untalented in guessing (longer) distances.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 05:39:23 AM by tho_mas » Logged
eronald
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« Reply #97 on: December 16, 2010, 09:11:41 AM »
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I somehow know when I've nailed it.

John

Yeah, I manage to do that with some cameras, others, no. Good feeling when it works.

Edmund
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Edmund Ronald, Ph.D. 
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« Reply #98 on: December 16, 2010, 11:43:33 AM »
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Well

In my opinion (and it is only my opinion) all these things - LCDs, EVFs, liveview, are utter trash and it is impossible to compose using them in any meaningful fashion. They do not represent the world in front of ourselves and the camera with any passion or romance, merely as a clinical array of pixels which has no magic or charm.

For this reason, I will hang on to my cameras with optical viewfinders until I am too old to take pictures any more  Wink And if I get a few shots which are missing focus, well that's just tough. I'd rather have the odd missing focus than missing the magic of taking photographs.

John

Couldn't agree with you more! The most surreal experience is to go to a concert these days and watch the kids watching it, literally, on the screens of their smartphones (as they presumably make an unusably bad recording of it). 

I always feel like grabbing them, and screaming: put down the fuc^&#! television..it's reallyhappening right in front of you!!

EVFs give me the same feeling.

That said......the sort of external monitor mentioned in Michael's review today is seriously useful, especially to MF users, where focus (i) matters more and (ii) is harder to achieve.

- N.
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Nick Devlin   @onelittlecamera
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« Reply #99 on: December 16, 2010, 02:24:17 PM »
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Couldn't agree with you more! The most surreal experience is to go to a concert these days and watch the kids watching it, literally, on the screens of their smartphones (as they presumably make an unusably bad recording of it). 

I always feel like grabbing them, and screaming: put down the fuc^&#! television..it's reallyhappening right in front of you!!

EVFs give me the same feeling.

That said......the sort of external monitor mentioned in Michael's review today is seriously useful, especially to MF users, where focus (i) matters more and (ii) is harder to achieve.

- N.

Nick,

When you go to a concert do you yell out "turn the volume down"  (insert smiley face here).

Whether one generation understands the other generation is not relevant because the next generation, is the one that we all sell to, whether your work is in a gallery, on a website, a printed page or your inventing the next new social network.

You are never going to get someone that was born in 1984 and grew up with an I-mac in their room to understand that a ground glass offers a better experience than an led/lcd and actually I'm not sure if it really does.

And I wouldn't dismiss these kids with their smart phones because even though most are just shooting a clip to put on their facebook page, there will be a few that use the experience to learn framing, composition, motion story telling that no school in the world can convey.

I have that Marshal monitor on a 5d2 that Michael reviewed and it works well, though I use it less and less as we have now moved our motion imagery to the RED (which works even better).

So my view is if your going to continue with professional image creation you have two options.  Stick with the old ways and end up on the park bench, or embrace what the consumer market already understands.

I personally believe that cameras, (still and motion) have not gone future enough.    You can see it with consumer cameras, they're oh so close in features, fall down in image quality but I think most of us don't realize that for all the professional systems, (canon and nikon included) we're still working with cameras that have the shape, usability very close to film cameras.

I think it's time that it all get's shaken up, but that topic is probably for another time.

IMO

BC
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