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Author Topic: Lens Choices for a Budget?  (Read 699 times)
JoeKitchen
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« on: January 30, 2013, 05:35:51 PM »
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So as the spring gets nearer and nearer and more and more work starts to come in, I feel that soon I will jump to MF.  If I was independently wealthy I would get a Schneider 28, 35, 43, 60, and 100/120 (cant decide on this one).  However, to my dismay, I am not independently wealthy, must work on a budget, and will only be able to get three lenses.  Now I can do without the long ones and I know the 60 is a must have, so which of the remain three should I go for?

I know if I had all the lenses 75-80% of my work would be shot with a 35 and 43.  Is it best to just go with these?

Or since I will need the occasional ability to go wide, should I get the 28 and 35, cropping down to 43 when need be?

Or based off of my guess that since the 35 is 10+ years old, and considering Schneider just redesigned their 28 and 60, hold off on getting the 35 (since it may be next on the list of lenses to be looked at)?  Of course the problem with this is that the 28 becomes my go to lens, meaning my clients will see wide images on location (most of which will be too wide to be good) and fall in love with them so much so they would not accept the cropped versions.
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Joe Kitchen
www.josephmkitchen.com

"Photography is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent moving furniture."  Arnold Newman
"Try not to be just better than your rivals and contemporaries, try to be better than yourself."  William Faulkner
Doug Peterson
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« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2013, 12:35:02 PM »
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Unless your primary goal is to own recent equipment (rather than a goal of owning the best equipment for your needs) then you should judge lenses only on their performance and functionality, not their age. The 35XL is an excellent lens regardless of it's age. Is it possible that a year or two from now Schneider will announce redesign it to be even better? Sure. But if you look at their recent redesigns the newer lens will also likely be twice the price. 28XL is also an excellent lens.

One consideration is that neither of these lenses is especially well suited for use on an 80mp digital back. So if such a back is in your near or mid-term future than these lenses are not right for you, and you would want Rodenstock wide angles instead.

Another consideration is whether stitching and/or cropping are acceptable methods for you to make a specific lens longer or wider (acceptable meaning it won't significantly interfere with your ability to make the images you want to make). Of course to properly make that consideration you'd need to know both in theory and in practice what a certain lens can "flex" to via stitching and cropping. We often make custom illustrations for our customers showing a specific lens (given it's focal length and stated/usable image circle) and how long/wide it would become with stitching and cropping.

The 43XL has a huge image circle which makes it very flexible. See below a custom report I made for you.

Basically a 43XL with an IQ160 (or P65+) can be:
  • a 52mm when cropped down to 40mp [35mm FF dSLR equivalent]
  • a 43mm with a single frame (duh) [28mm FF dSLR equivalent]
  • a 32mm when stitched with two shots [20mm FF dSLR equivalent]

« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 01:29:17 PM by Doug Peterson » Logged

DOUG PETERSON (dep@digitaltransitions.com), Digital Transitions
Dealer for Phase One, Mamiya Leaf, Arca-Swiss, Cambo, Profoto
Office: 877.367.8537
Cell: 740.707.2183
Phase One IQ250 FAQ
JoeKitchen
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« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2013, 01:33:49 PM »
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For the back, I feel that 80 MP is overkill and would prefer nothing bigger than 60 MP.  The size of the pixel wells is one of the main reasons behind this and the problems it poses.  Cropping down is not something that bothers, but stitching I consider a pain.  My exposures are becoming more and more complicated, and longer too.  With the use of a linear polarizer I just got, they are getting to the 2 to 40 second range.  And with MF's ability to do true multi-exposures, I am sure the will continue to evolve.  I just do not want to have to reproduce the same series of exposure to stitch together later.  However, the 35 and 43 just seems like two great lenses; not to mention the 28 is up there in price.  Maybe I will just have to deal with stitching. 
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Joe Kitchen
www.josephmkitchen.com

"Photography is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent moving furniture."  Arnold Newman
"Try not to be just better than your rivals and contemporaries, try to be better than yourself."  William Faulkner
Doug Peterson
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« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2013, 02:20:13 PM »
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For the back, I feel that 80 MP is overkill and would prefer nothing bigger than 60 MP.  The size of the pixel wells is one of the main reasons behind this and the problems it poses.  Cropping down is not something that bothers, but stitching I consider a pain.  My exposures are becoming more and more complicated, and longer too.  With the use of a linear polarizer I just got, they are getting to the 2 to 40 second range.  And with MF's ability to do true multi-exposures, I am sure the will continue to evolve.  I just do not want to have to reproduce the same series of exposure to stitch together later.  However, the 35 and 43 just seems like two great lenses; not to mention the 28 is up there in price.  Maybe I will just have to deal with stitching. 

When doing long exposures and stacking compositions (e.g. for compositing) stitching is not practical. You don't want to limit you ability to be creative by technical burdens/limitations.

So maybe the 43XL and 28XL is the best combo for you. You can crop into the 28XL as needed and when you're cropping so much you're nearing 43mm equivalent then you can switch to the 43XL. If you want to work with us on all that we'd be glad to recreate the above charts for these various lens+cropping combinations. I can also take one of your images (shot on another camera with another lens) and simulate where each lens+crop would leave you resolution and angle of view wise.
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DOUG PETERSON (dep@digitaltransitions.com), Digital Transitions
Dealer for Phase One, Mamiya Leaf, Arca-Swiss, Cambo, Profoto
Office: 877.367.8537
Cell: 740.707.2183
Phase One IQ250 FAQ
JoeKitchen
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« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2013, 10:42:45 PM »
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When doing long exposures and stacking compositions (e.g. for compositing) stitching is not practical. You don't want to limit you ability to be creative by technical burdens/limitations.

So maybe the 43XL and 28XL is the best combo for you. You can crop into the 28XL as needed and when you're cropping so much you're nearing 43mm equivalent then you can switch to the 43XL. If you want to work with us on all that we'd be glad to recreate the above charts for these various lens+cropping combinations. I can also take one of your images (shot on another camera with another lens) and simulate where each lens+crop would leave you resolution and angle of view wise.
Thanks for the offer.  Not sure the next time I will in NYC and have extra time though.  BTW, is the 28mm a full symmetrical design?  Would it be advised to purchase the lenses if I would plan to upgrade to a IQ160 in the 2 or 3 years.  (I am leaning towards a P45+.) 
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Joe Kitchen
www.josephmkitchen.com

"Photography is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent moving furniture."  Arnold Newman
"Try not to be just better than your rivals and contemporaries, try to be better than yourself."  William Faulkner
Doug Peterson
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« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2013, 11:20:01 PM »
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28xl is symmetric. It's fine with the 65+ and iq160 but not with the IQ180.
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DOUG PETERSON (dep@digitaltransitions.com), Digital Transitions
Dealer for Phase One, Mamiya Leaf, Arca-Swiss, Cambo, Profoto
Office: 877.367.8537
Cell: 740.707.2183
Phase One IQ250 FAQ
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