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Author Topic: The best camera is...  (Read 14053 times)
MichaelEzra
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« Reply #40 on: August 01, 2012, 07:10:02 PM »
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As long as 36 megapixels in 3:2 format are sufficient for your application, I would suggest to look at D800E.
It is a very fine still camera, with the greatest range of its use. 1080p is a free bonus.
Medium format bodies are capricious. If reliability is a priority, multiple D800E bodies can be afforded for a single MFDB price. Just get two... might as well shoot stereo;)
Spend more on finest lenses with the F mount. After all, lenses will remain and at some point you will upgrade the body for newer technology.
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Codger
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« Reply #41 on: August 01, 2012, 09:20:48 PM »
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The Leica S2 sensor is actually 45x30, providing a 3:2 proportion.  The Pentax 645D and the Hassy H4D-40 use a 44x33 sensor, essentially yielding 4:3 proportion format.  As good as the Leica and its glass is, if one is going to produce 4:3 images, there'll be some cropping on that long dimension, reducing somewhat the 37 Mp capture.
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« Reply #42 on: August 01, 2012, 09:52:44 PM »
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The Leica S2 sensor is actually 45x30, providing a 3:2 proportion.  The Pentax 645D and the Hassy H4D-40 use a 44x33 sensor, essentially yielding 4:3 proportion format.  As good as the Leica and its glass is, if one is going to produce 4:3 images, there'll be some cropping on that long dimension, reducing somewhat the 37 Mp capture.

Very good point! One of the reasons I admire MF is the 4:3 ratio. Anyone have any experience with the H4D-31? Seems like a good balance of affordability and function. The biggest I would ever want to print is 5' X 7'
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« Reply #43 on: August 01, 2012, 10:12:29 PM »
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Why has nobody has mentioned the HASSELBLAD 500C w/ a CFV-50 digital back?
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Don Libby
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« Reply #44 on: August 01, 2012, 10:42:55 PM »
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What I consider the best camera will in all likelihood not be your pick.  What suits me may not suite you.  This is like a wife asking if the pants makes her butt look to large.  There isn't a simple answer because it isn't a simple question.

I read all the replies here and the only one agree with is Yair.  Buy a ticket go to Cologne and spend some quality time at Photokina.  Touch them, feel them and try out the various systems.  Ask questions there specific to the system you have in your hands.  Ask yourself how they feel in your hands.  Try to get it down to 2 or 3 systems then do some more hands on research.

In the end you'll find the best camera is the one you use the most.

Just my 2˘ for what its worth.

Oh - I use a Cambo WRS 1000 (since fall 2008) and currently a Phase One IQ160 as well as a Phase One DF body to help "capture the essence of my environment".  I like that term.....
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #45 on: August 02, 2012, 12:13:28 AM »
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Hi,

I guess that you need to know what you are dissatisfied with regarding Canon and Nikon images. There is no difference between formats. A larger format is simply larger. Now, there are advantages with size.

A sensor is an electronic device, by and large, it just captures photons. There is no magic in sensors. Color is not created by the sensor it self but by the color grid array in the front of the sensor and the software processing the raw image. It is well possible that some CGAs (Color Grid Arrays) are optimized for better color separation (like Velvia) and some others may be optimized for better high ISO performance.

The colors we see are created by the software and they are always tweaked, except when scene referred rendering is used. The tweaking depends on software. Some software may have better profiles for the camera.

So color is CGA and software (with format not at all involved).

Noise which is related to smoothness and DR depends mostly on the number of photons captured. A larger format will collect more photons, if exposure is the same. The darkest parts of the image will be affected by readout noise (from the electronics) this is an area where MF is not very good but recent sensors from Sony, Nikon, Pentax and others excel.

Resolution is mostly depending on sensor. More pixels, better resolution. Fine detail contrast depends much on lens and AA-filtering. A larger format will show any detail larger on the sensor, that is good for fine detail contrast. Stopping down excessively causes diffraction, with larger formats you need to stop down more for DoF, so diffraction may affect fine detail contrast more.

Another important factor is focusing accuracy. Modern DSLRs have live view, where you can see the actual image on the sensor. If live view is enlarged so you see each pixel you can focus exactly, but your focus can still be spoiled by focus shift.

With MF it may be difficult to achieve optimal focus. Alpa allows the back to be shimmed within 0.01 mm, and has extremely long calibrated focusing gear. You can use it with a laser rangefinder to focus exactly.

I'd suggest that the article below is recommended reading:
http://www.josephholmes.com/news-medformatprecision.html

But issues do exist with all formats.

The most important factor is the photographer making the best of his/her equipment. The equipment you know you can rely on is the one that best for you.

Best regards
Erik


Hello!

I've spent probably 50 hours this week on LL, reading so many different opinions that my head is spinning. I'm tired on the mediocre quality images that come from Canon vs Nikon, and 35mm in general; just seems like something is missing. Medium format just seems to envelop the viewer in the photograph. So what is the best setup for landscape photography? Is it a 645 w/ a Phase One back? Is it a Blad H4D, Leica S2? What the heck is that Alpha TC looking contraption?

Besides the atmospheric aspect of medium format photography, I need a system that has the least distortion, the most sharpness, and usable in the outdoor environment. Now before someone jumps at me as say "the best camera is the one you have with you", I've gone down that route, and it's just not the right answer for me. The best camera, is the one that does what I need it to do; and that is capture the essence of my environment. I've saved my money wisely and have a maximum budget of $50K. Hope to get some sense out of all the information presented on LL, and ultimately reach photographic nirvana. Thanks in Advance!

CL
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yaya
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« Reply #46 on: August 02, 2012, 01:49:17 AM »
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So color is CGA and software (with format not at all involved).

Really? If that's true then there are a lot of electronics engineers who can be out of work tomorrow...

Quote
Noise which is related to smoothness and DR depends mostly on the number of photons captured. A larger format will collect more photons, if exposure is the same. The darkest parts of the image will be affected by readout noise (from the electronics) this is an area where MF is not very good but recent sensors from Sony, Nikon, Pentax and others excel.
Quote

Erik no offence but I think that if you want to make this sort of statements you should back them up with images and not with articles and graphs...

Quote
Resolution is mostly depending on sensor. More pixels, better resolution. Fine detail contrast depends much on lens and AA-filtering. A larger format will show any detail larger on the sensor, that is good for fine detail contrast. Stopping down excessively causes diffraction, with larger formats you need to stop down more for DoF, so diffraction may affect fine detail contrast more.

There's more to it than just the size of the sensor and the number of pixels....not all pixels are created equal you know...there are different shapes of pixels, different readout designs, different ways of dealing with light spillage, different shapes and arrangements of microlenses etc. etc.

BR

Yair
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #47 on: August 02, 2012, 06:53:00 AM »
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Hi,

Regarding color I stated that it is not depending on format but only on CGA (Color Grid Array) and processing. Have you tried to crop an image and see if it changes color?

Regarding noise and DR I'd suggest that this is a standard reference: http://theory.uchicago.edu/~ejm/pix/20d/tests/noise/index.html

Adequately made comparisons of MF and DSLR images are not easy to come by, unfortunately. Here is a comparison between Leica S2 and Nikon D3X, based on images from Lloyd Chambers "DAP" site, the images used with the kind permission of the Lloyd Chambers: http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/38-observations-on-leica-s2-raw-images

Marc McCalmont has started a long thread here on LuLa comparing his new Nikon D800E to his IQ180: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=67333.0

Best regards
Erik




...
Erik no offence but I think that if you want to make this sort of statements you should back them up with images and not with articles and graphs...
...

There's more to it than just the size of the sensor and the number of pixels....not all pixels are created equal you know...there are different shapes of pixels, different readout designs, different ways of dealing with light spillage, different shapes and arrangements of microlenses etc. etc.


BR

Yair
« Last Edit: August 02, 2012, 06:56:05 AM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Pingang
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« Reply #48 on: August 02, 2012, 07:29:51 AM »
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Many camera systems can be considered best in some ways, but base on your criteria, and in friendlier package and the "look" factor, may be S2 is the one.
It really needs very capable hand and well trined eyes to make and tell the meaningful difference between the major offerings today. If you are not shooting professionally that a large system support is concerned, Leica S2 is a good choice for customers with good job income, care for having the best, and looked the best.  OK, medium format digital backs are bigger and heavier but less friendly to travel and not looked as smart. 

Pingang


Hello!

I've spent probably 50 hours this week on LL, reading so many different opinions that my head is spinning. I'm tired on the mediocre quality images that come from Canon vs Nikon, and 35mm in general; just seems like something is missing. Medium format just seems to envelop the viewer in the photograph. So what is the best setup for landscape photography? Is it a 645 w/ a Phase One back? Is it a Blad H4D, Leica S2? What the heck is that Alpha TC looking contraption?

Besides the atmospheric aspect of medium format photography, I need a system that has the least distortion, the most sharpness, and usable in the outdoor environment. Now before someone jumps at me as say "the best camera is the one you have with you", I've gone down that route, and it's just not the right answer for me. The best camera, is the one that does what I need it to do; and that is capture the essence of my environment. I've saved my money wisely and have a maximum budget of $50K. Hope to get some sense out of all the information presented on LL, and ultimately reach photographic nirvana. Thanks in Advance!

CL
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #49 on: August 02, 2012, 08:38:45 AM »
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I've tried the D800/E, and I don't care for Nikon's quality these days.

What does that mean?

Cheers,
Bernard
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« Reply #50 on: August 02, 2012, 08:51:56 AM »
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What does that mean?

Cheers,
Bernard


Returned two D800's. Both were faulty. First had AF issues, second had a dead LCD. The one that worked the most, had considerable moire.
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BJL
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« Reply #51 on: August 02, 2012, 10:06:25 AM »
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Returned two D800's. ... The one that worked the most, had considerable moire.
If D800 moiré bothers you, I hope you realize that DMF backs will almost certainly have more, not less, due to their lack of AA filters.

If you wish to explore MF for the first time and want some ruggedness for that Antarctic trip, one thought is to experiment first by spending a relatively small portion of that $50,000 budget on a Pentax 645D with one or two lenses, use that kit for a while (like in Antarctica) and then decide how to divide the substantial remaining budget between (a) improving ypur gear (b) classes, travel, and other opportunities to further improve your skills with the gear you have.

Edit: I mention the Pentax system because as fas as I know it is the only weather-sealed DMF camera, and its design is more oriented to outdoor usage while all other "larger than 35mm" systems are more oriented to studio usage. But other who know more might want to correct me on this.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2012, 10:11:12 AM by BJL » Logged
Captian Light
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« Reply #52 on: August 02, 2012, 10:21:26 AM »
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If D800 moiré bothers you, I hope you realize that DMF backs will almost certainly have more, not less, due to their lack of AA filters.

If you wish to explore MF for the first time and want some ruggedness for that Antarctic trip, one thought is to experiment first by spending a relatively small portion of that $50,000 budget on a Pentax 645D with one or two lenses, use that kit for a while (like in Antarctica) and then decide how to divide the substantial remaining budget between (a) improving ypur gear (b) classes, travel, and other opportunities to further improve your skills with the gear you have.

Edit: I mention the Pentax system because as fas as I know it is the only weather-sealed DMF camera, and its design is more oriented to outdoor usage while all other "larger than 35mm" systems are more oriented to studio usage. But other who know more might want to correct me on this.


How are the quality of lenses for the Pentax?
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #53 on: August 02, 2012, 10:56:10 AM »
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Hi,

I can see that you are not satisfied. Nikon is known to have issues with AF on the 800D, I don't know how bad.

Regarding moiré, it really depends on the sensor outresolving the lens. To see it you need to have correct focus, nearly optimal aperture and so on. Moiré is normally much worse on MF than on DSLRs as DSLRs have OLP (Optical Low Pass) filtering an MF does normally not.

It is said that stopping down a Leica S2 to f/11 takes care of the Moiré issue, but I have seen statements to the contrary.

What are you shooting? Very few people seem to have issues with Moiré on the Nikon D800E, so it's interesting to hear.

Best regards
Erik

Returned two D800's. Both were faulty. First had AF issues, second had a dead LCD. The one that worked the most, had considerable moire.
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wildlightphoto
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« Reply #54 on: August 02, 2012, 12:22:31 PM »
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I mention the Pentax system because as fas as I know it is the only weather-sealed DMF camera

The Leica S2 is also weather sealed.
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Captian Light
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« Reply #55 on: August 02, 2012, 12:29:58 PM »
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What are you shooting? Very few people seem to have issues with Moiré on the Nikon D800E, so it's interesting to hear.

Best regards
Erik


I'm shooting landscapes in Iceland, Antarctica, and Austria. For personal enjoyment only. My job is a lot of hard work, and photography, and being in these environments are the only things that makes me truly happy.
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FredBGG
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« Reply #56 on: August 02, 2012, 12:34:57 PM »
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It is said that stopping down a Leica S2 to f/11 takes care of the Moiré issue, but I have seen statements to the contrary.
Erik


You will get all sorts of fuzzy information on Moiré.

There are many variables that influence it. Stopping down to f11 may help at times if diffraction at f11 reduces resolution just enough.
However this depends on how detailed and how repetitive the texture you are photographing is.
There will be plenty of cases where Moiré will not go away at f11 or even with an OLPF

However Moiré is quite simple to remove. Nikon's software does a very good job with the D800.
However it's important to remember that Moiré removal is done by removing high frequency color differences
that are produced by the interference between the pixel array and the detail of the subject.
This can be a problem if you have both false colors as well as fine color detail in the subject that you want to maintain.

The real solution is quite simple.... shoot film Wink
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« Reply #57 on: August 02, 2012, 12:37:16 PM »
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Doug,
Are you using the S2 personally?   I know you have the DMR and like it plus the R glass.  I'm just asking because I also had a DMR and liked it and the R8 body that I had.  Great experience overall, but that lead me to be underwhelmed by the S2 when I handled one.  After the DMR, I went to a Rollei 6008AF and phase p20 with the excellent Schneider lenses.  I feel the DMR was a wonderful camera/back but I never regretted the switch.    Now I use a Rollei AFi-ii 12 primarily which I'm quite happy with.  
Eric
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Captian Light
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« Reply #58 on: August 02, 2012, 12:39:36 PM »
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You will get all sorts of fuzzy information on Moiré.

There are many variables that influence it. Stopping down to f11 may help at times if diffraction at f11 reduces resolution just enough.
However this depends on how detailed and how repetitive the texture you are photographing is.
There will be plenty of cases where Moiré will not go away at f11 or even with an OLPF

However Moiré is quite simple to remove. Nikon's software does a very good job with the D800.
However it's important to remember that Moiré removal is done by removing high frequency color differences
that are produced by the interference between the pixel array and the detail of the subject.
This can be a problem if you have both false colors as well as fine color detail in the subject that you want to maintain.

The real solution is quite simple.... shoot film Wink


Yes, but moire doesn't seem to be an issue with natural landscapes. Don't you lose "something" during the process of scanning the image. I've yet to see a scanned film image that outclasses a digital, in terms of color and tonality. Perhaps you avoid moire...
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wildlightphoto
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« Reply #59 on: August 02, 2012, 12:44:15 PM »
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moire doesn't seem to be an issue with natural landscapes.

It shouldn't be a problem with natural landscapes.  Sometimes there is a problem with feathers.
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