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Author Topic: Everything matters revisited  (Read 7472 times)
pad
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« Reply #20 on: January 26, 2012, 06:03:55 AM »
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Indeed everything matters right now!!!

In 2003 I took 3 landscape views of Portland harbour from different vantage points on Portland heights (Dorset UK). I hand stitched multiple images from my new Canon Powershot S50 using Photoshot 6 (or was it 7?) using layers and freeform transform to do aligning and blending then printed on my new Epson 2100 with pigment inks on Epson paper roll.

Now I looked at my images; to see that in a field I had captured some horses, a garden with greenhouse and cabbage patch, a party with a bouncy castle in another, the number 1 bus en-route to Weymouth going down the hill and the air-sea rescue helicoter on the tarmac. So I could see that the middle distance was full of detail that I had not seen when choosing my initial composition. The far distance (far side of the harbour) I could see rows of houses with windows and doors but they were definitely not sharp.

Still, I had to get my 1.6m image framed. Long story short, the framer ended up buying over 100 of my landscapes to sell in his shop so I suppose there was enough detail in my images that some of the public were prepared to part with their cash to own them.

So, what would the images look like if I had had a higher resolution sensor? As my meagre pocket allowed I bought a Canon 20D then a Canon 5D and assorted lenses. I have returned many times in the last 9 years in an attempt to reproduce the original landscapes and this is where my point about EVERYTHING matters comes in:

1) Mother nature refuses to play ball in that I have not had the same clarity of the air and light that I had when I shot the originals.
2) Mother nature makes things grow! 2 of my vantage points are now obscured by trees.
3) The area in the middle ground has been redeveloped; the large oil tanks have gone, the helicopter has a new hanger, the Weymouth and Portland Sailing Academy and marina have been built.

So whats my point? ... make the most of what you've got NOW because stuff changes that is outside of your control.

I'm pretty sure Ansel Adams would make some excellent prints, if he were alive today, using digital sensors and ink jet printing, but I'm also sure that like all of us, he would take thousand of images that would be discarded. He made the most of the equipment (cameras, film and paper) available to him at the time, but a lot of his impact comes from his eye for an image. How many people look at one of his prints and say "looks like he used 4x5 film for that one"? If they do, then I think they've missed the point of his work.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 06:06:45 AM by pad » Logged
bjanes
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« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2012, 09:06:19 AM »
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For me, there's a tad more than a simple resolution value in that...
What I see is that 6 and 4px lines are well rendered, while smaller ones are much mushier, and I'd think of it as a diminishing MTF - from what I've seen on my printer (R1800, older dither but 1pl drops) I'd say that from our metric 254dpi (100 pixels/cm) rule-of-thumb, MTF goes downward rather quickly (I even heard a custom french printer say that resolution beyond 200dpi is mostly wasted). Comparing two prints of the same image at 240 and 480dpi, the bigger one shows more information to my eye.

Yes, diminishing MTF at high frequencies tends to take place in most systems. Testing resolution by looking at whether or not line pairs can be distinguished as with the USAF resolution chart is outmoded, and modern testing uses MTF. It has been shown that a high MTF at lower frequencies is more important than resolution at extinction. Norman Koren has stated that it makes little sense to test resolution at a point when it disappears. Smiley

Although the human visual system can resolve down to about 1 minute of arc (30 cycles per degree), the contrast sensitivity function peaks at about 6 cycles per degree, which corresponds to about 1 cycle per millimeter when the print is viewed at a distance of 34 cm. These characteristics are incorporated into SQF (subjective quality factor). See Bob Atkins. The MTF between 3 and 12 cycles per degree is most important for perceived sharpness. For an 8 by 10 inch print from a 35 mm sensor and viewed at the above distance, this corresponds to between 4 and 16 cycles/mm on the sensor. This compares to the Nyquist of 84 lp/mm for the Nikon D3x.

These considerations indicate that for an 8 by 10 inch print, one can obtain most of the critical image quality with considerably less resolution than afforded by the D3x. The increased resolution of the D3x at high frequencies where the eye is not that sensitive will contribute to image quality to a lesser extent. The same considerations would apply to Mark's IQ180.

Regards,

Bill
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NikoJorj
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« Reply #22 on: January 26, 2012, 11:07:26 AM »
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These considerations indicate that for an 8 by 10 inch print, one can obtain most of the critical image quality with considerably less resolution than afforded by the D3x. The increased resolution of the D3x at high frequencies where the eye is not that sensitive will contribute to image quality to a lesser extent.
Yes indeed, it's definitively a matter of diminishing returns.
I'd think it's also a matter of taste : the visual sensation of fine details may be more appreciated by some than by others, giving those SQF calculations a subjective side (and as said, many people can still see the 600dpi print as sharper than the 300dpi, not to mention the 8x10 contact print).
I was about to make an analogy with what one can taste and like in wine (thinking to the vanilla aromas of oak chips, something quite overdone even here in France), but would dismiss it as unappriopriate after a second thought.
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Nicolas from Grenoble
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bjanes
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« Reply #23 on: January 26, 2012, 12:39:27 PM »
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Oh, I know exactly why Mike shut it down (and even predicted so in the thread). When posters start attacking people personally–such as calling into question somebody's honesty–stuff goes down hill very, very quickly. So, he shut it down...he didn't remove it, just shut it down.

This thread will live as long as personal attacks don't happen and people are civil–note I typed civil, you don't have to be polite, just debate amongst yourselves in a civil manner...cross any lines and this will get shut down as well. And, Mike has already warned that personal attacks will result in a ban on the perpetrator.

I'm not certain that merely pointing out that someone has a financial interest in an entity is tantamount to impugning his honesty. Top experts in any field are bound to have conflicts of interest, but they should be duly noted so that readers can judge for themselves if any statements for a particular product are unreasonable and open to question. Since Mark likes analogies readers, should consider an example in a peer reviewed journal.



I don't think that many would suspect that these top experts in their field working in prestigious institutions would mislead readers in life and death situations for a mere honorarium. Nonetheless, their potential conflicts of interest are disclosed. However, I don't think Mark's treatise would be published in any peer reviewed journal.

Regards,

Bill
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Alan Goldhammer
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« Reply #24 on: January 26, 2012, 01:37:08 PM »
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I don't think that many would suspect that these top experts in their field working in prestigious institutions would mislead readers in life and death situations for a mere honorarium. Nonetheless, their potential conflicts of interest are disclosed. However, I don't think Mark's treatise would be published in any peer reviewed journal.

Regards,

Bill
ROFL!!!!  Prior to retirement I worked on this issue (among many others) at the trade association representing this particular industry.  We ended up publishing a set of principles for research and the key to everything is adequate disclosure of "potential" conflicts of interest.  See section 3.d HERE.  It's important to note that just because someone has a financial relationship that this does not imply that there is a conflict of interest!!
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michael
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« Reply #25 on: January 26, 2012, 02:51:40 PM »
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This topic is getting very stale, very quickly.

Let me state this clearly and without ambiguity so that the topic can be put to bed once and for all.

Mark and I are, among other pursuits, teachers. We teach in various venues and for various organizations and companies. Among those companies is Phase One. When we teach for Phase One we are paid, just the same as any other teacher. And by "the same" I mean that all instructors on Phase One workshops are paid the same amount for the same period of time.

Neither Mark not I have any other fiduciary or business relationship with Phase One, other than that we spend our own money buying gear from our local dealers. That's it.

Mark and I also have personal relationships with some of the executives at Phase One. We also have such relationships with other executives at other companies in the industry. One can't work in this business for as long as Mark and I have without becomes friends with some people

But, those friendships never never knowingly colour what we write.

Is that clear? Intimating, insinuating, or implying that anything else is the case is simply wrong, and to do so on these pages will lead to being banned because I'm fed up with such innuendo.

Michael




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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #26 on: January 26, 2012, 03:38:10 PM »
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Sometimes I have the impression the sheer success and quality of this site seems to be the proof for some
that there must be some sort of corruption, because no one would take the effort doing this for free.
Maybe Michael has a hidden castle somewhere with a big park of Rolls Royces and we just don't know of it.
An alternate explanation could be, that Michael is just plain crazy.
Choose your poison.

 Tongue
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #27 on: January 26, 2012, 04:45:55 PM »
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Sometimes I have the impression the sheer success and quality of this site seems to be the proof for some
that there must be some sort of corruption, because no one would take the effort doing this for free.
Maybe Michael has a hidden castle somewhere with a big park of Rolls Royces and we just don't know of it.
An alternate explanation could be, that Michael is just plain crazy.

I know you are joking, but I would think that the very successful videos and content created by Michael and his team are more than enough to explain the profitability of LL?

Cheers,
Bernard
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2012, 05:17:44 PM »
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I know you are joking, but I would think that the very successful videos and content created by Michael and his team are more than enough to explain the profitability of LL?

Cheers,
Bernard


I can't and don't want to judge if and how profitable it is.
I bought some of the videos and found them a huge help.
My impression just is that some people here sometimes mess up mature criticism with destructivity.
My impression also is, that Michael and the other contributors do enough to disclose and explain their connections to the industry (which not everyone on the forums here does always as he should).
'nuff said.
Time for some better threads.
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John Camp
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« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2012, 07:13:59 PM »
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Four years ago I was covering the Republican National Convention in St. Paul and we were given credentials by the Republicans for various kinds of access, and wore these around our necks on a nylon string. I didn't notice it at the time, but the Republicans had apparently gotten one of the local businesses (I think it might have been Wells Fargo, but it might have been US West) to donate the halters, and woven into the fabric was the company logo or the company name. So, there was a march by some protesters, and I went along for the story (and shot some pictures along the way) and at some point, realized that a rather large woman was screaming in my direction. I looked around to see who it was, to see what was happening, and realized that she was screaming something at me. She'd seen the halter, and demanded to know why I was wearing it. I said, because we were given it with the credentials. She said it was a conflict of interest for a "supposedly objective" news reporter to be wearing such a blatant corporate endorsement. I mean, I didn't even see it when I got it, and I suppose a thousand or so news people were wearing them without seeing it -- it was just a pattern on a half-inch-wide string -- and this woman was completely out of control. And didn't stop. Picked me out and kept following me yelling this crazy stuff about corruption. I finally lost my shit and shouted at her, angrily, "You think I'd sell out for a fuckin' nickel?" which was about what the string was worth. (When you got done with them, you threw them away. There were hundreds of them laying around.)

Implications of conflict of interest have to be carefully thought through. The ludicrous thing is that some people suggested rather archly, or critically, that Mark was rich, while others suggested that he'd sell out for a nickel; that doesn't seem to compute. I'd hate to see that kind of b.s. curdle the freedom to speak on this forum, but it is pretty stupid.

  
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 07:15:34 PM by John Camp » Logged
Schewe
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« Reply #30 on: January 26, 2012, 10:55:46 PM »
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Implications of conflict of interest have to be carefully thought through.

It's this sort of discussion that will piss the hell out of Michael (as it does me although Mark always gets a giggle from it). You would do well to get the discussion back on track and quit talking about who owes what to whom for what reason.

If you have issues with the article Mark wrote, feel free to discuss it. If you want to question his motive and agenda, then you risk getting banned. Simple as that.

Just so ya know, I'm NOT an investor in LuLa, I bought my own IQ180 back and do consulting and testing with Adobe. I also work with Epson to advance ink jet printing. My choice of underwear is briefs, not boxers. I occasionally wear Hawaiian shirts (and no I do not get promotional money from Tommy Bahama even though that's the brand I usually wear).

So, you wanna see my 2011 IRS tax returns? Sorry, screw you...I ain't running for the GOP Presidential nominee...
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jbgeach
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« Reply #31 on: January 26, 2012, 11:11:27 PM »
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I have been following this since I first read the article several days ago. I can't believe we are talking about a conflict of interest. There is none in this article.

However, there is poor rhetorical examples and a couple of poor example images.

I read the entire article and I enjoyed it. However, I kept returning to the example pictures at least 4 times, because on my monitor, the first picture looked much better than the second. After careful examination, I saw the decreased depth of field that gave away the medium format back. However, the first picture is much more pleasing to the eye, likely due to increased saturation.  It was a perfect illustration of why color and processing is often more important that dynamic range. The added dynamic range really added little to this photograph.
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Schewe
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« Reply #32 on: January 26, 2012, 11:15:23 PM »
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An alternate explanation could be, that Michael is just plain crazy.

Yes...the option above is correct...having spent a lot of time sitting next to Mike in vidoes, I can confirm he is crazy...and he has an inordinate amount of fun–which I'm down with. At this stage or our lives, if it ain't fun, we ain't doing it...we don't need the money, we have precious little time left (Mike is older but I'm fighting my past even tough I'm prolly now in the best shape of my life. BP is 128/78 and my total cholesterol is 151 with LDL 75 and HDL 47–which is good) and we honestly do want to pass stuff forward...

We don't do this shit for money...we do it because we love it and it's fun. Well, ok, Chris has less fun than Mike and I...since he has to spend months listening to Mike and I go on at great length to the point he begins to hate the sounds of our voices).

And Mike and I are about to start a new tutorial for LR4...my sympathies goes out to Chis and Chuck...sorry.

Nobody I know and associate with are whores...if you think otherwise, then that's your own baggage showing through...
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Martin Kristiansen
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« Reply #33 on: January 26, 2012, 11:33:30 PM »
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For me it is simple.

Nothing matters. Just the photograph

However, to produce the photograph everything matters.
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bartfrassee
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« Reply #34 on: January 27, 2012, 03:03:28 AM »
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I kept returning to the example pictures at least 4 times, because on my monitor, the first picture looked much better than the second. After careful examination, I saw the decreased depth of field that gave away the medium format back. However, the first picture is much more pleasing to the eye, likely due to increased saturation.

If one of the pictures is by far less saturated than the other, you might want to try another browser. For me, Firefox and IE work, Chrome does not. You need a browser or image viewer that is able to display the ProPhotoRGB color values of the second picture correctly. The MF picture actually does look better if its colors are rendered faithfully. On a (color managed) wide color gamut display it even shines ;-)
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 03:28:21 AM by bartfrassee » Logged
NikoJorj
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« Reply #35 on: January 27, 2012, 08:28:26 AM »
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If one of the pictures is by far less saturated than the other, you might want to try another browser.
Ditto!
One can check http://www.color.org/version4html.xalter to ensure images are properly displayed (bottom result with 4 different squares is bad, middle result with uniform bottom half and 2 different squares on top is good, top result with uniform image is even better but not compulsory if one keeps in mind that v4 profiles are scarce).
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Nicolas from Grenoble
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« Reply #36 on: January 27, 2012, 10:49:34 AM »
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If one of the pictures is by far less saturated than the other, you might want to try another browser. For me, Firefox and IE work, Chrome does not. You need a browser or image viewer that is able to display the ProPhotoRGB color values of the second picture correctly. The MF picture actually does look better if its colors are rendered faithfully. On a (color managed) wide color gamut display it even shines ;-)
Thanks Bart. I looked again at the photos in Safari and the MF back does the photo justice. However, this is a great example of why I shoot in sRGB, for my needs, it is adequate and there is no risk of my photos looking like ungraded video.

That being said, I am glad there are photographers like Mark who push the envelope of image quality. Larger format really does give a crisper smoother picture. However, the law of diminishing returns always rears its ugly and head and with a new generation of FF DSLRs about to be introduced, I believe the differences will become even smaller.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 10:57:04 AM by jbgeach » Logged
jeremypayne
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« Reply #37 on: January 27, 2012, 12:38:57 PM »
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Too funny ... in an article about paying attention to "the little details", a non-sRGB jpeg was uploaded?

Really?Huh  The irony there is pretty thick ...
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graphius
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« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2012, 06:47:58 PM »
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For me it is simple.

Nothing matters. Just the photograph

However, to produce the photograph everything matters.

Best post, by far in this entire discussion....

Thanks
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #39 on: January 28, 2012, 03:11:47 AM »
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That being said, I am glad there are photographers like Mark who push the envelope of image quality. Larger format really does give a crisper smoother picture. However, the law of diminishing returns always rears its ugly and head and with a new generation of FF DSLRs about to be introduced, I believe the differences will become even smaller.

I just don't get this. There are many ways to push the enveloppe way beyond the image quality delivered by a single IQ180 image. 8x10 scans, scanning backs, stitching,... Besides all of these approaches are much cheaper.

Using an IQ180 might be the most convenient way to achieve a high level of image quality, but it is very far from being the end of the road in terms of image quality.

Cheers,
Bernard
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