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Author Topic: DIGITAL Medium Format photography is almost as moribund???  (Read 44170 times)
ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #160 on: March 06, 2013, 01:25:37 AM »
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Hi Jerome,

Thanks for the images. It would be nice to have the 100 ISO raw images. Phocus does some lens corrections in software, for instance it would eliminate lateral chromatic aberration. LR 4 would do that (by checking a checkbox) but it seems Aperture does not.

I essentially would be interested to have raw from both Hassy and Nikon.

Best regards
Erik
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #161 on: March 06, 2013, 01:26:23 AM »
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Nice church, where is it located if I may ask?

Cheers,
Bernard
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jerome_m
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« Reply #162 on: March 06, 2013, 01:28:22 AM »
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Nice church, where is it located if I may ask?

That church as its own wikipedia article...  Wink
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torger
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« Reply #163 on: March 06, 2013, 01:29:26 AM »
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I call that just buying the right camera. Wink

I also think the "upgrade" idea is wrong. No matter what camera is released, my 645D will continue to produce wonderful images. Those images are not diminished because something else has better noise or high ISO or a nicer finish. THE most important factor in the quality of my work is me. If my work is only valued because of the number of pixels, I should start looking for another career.

I agree. However, the whole MFD business model is designed for frequent upgrading, so the business depends on people desiring to have the latest and greatest Smiley
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jerome_m
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« Reply #164 on: March 06, 2013, 01:29:55 AM »
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I essentially would be interested to have raw from both Hassy and Nikon.

How do you suggest I send you the files? They are quite big.
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Chris Livsey
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« Reply #165 on: March 06, 2013, 01:44:43 AM »
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I agree. However, the whole MFD business model is designed for frequent upgrading, so the business depends on people desiring to have the latest and greatest Smiley
That applies equally to the 35mm SLR model only the refresh rate there seems to be faster and the incremental "improvements" in larger steps.

Against that the 35mm SLR had big steps to take to catch up eg at the time of the P20 it was untouchable (base iso) to SLR (on pure quality) now with the D800E we have this thread which has moved from the SLR versatility argument to one on outright quality.
Arguably the versatility has been diminished with the requirement for optimum results to MLU and tripod the SLR. Has that levelled the playing field ?
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Chris Livsey
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FredBGG
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« Reply #166 on: March 06, 2013, 01:45:50 AM »
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In these pictures, I was not particularly interested in comparing sharpness, but rather to find about dynamic range, color and noise of the H3D-31 in a low-light situation.

I compared both the ISO 800 and the ISO 100.

However to compare them more clearly when viewing crops I scaled down the Nikon so that
the features in the image were the same size.

The result was that the Nikon and Hasselblad were the same as far as detail goes, but that the Nikon
has better highlights and shadows thus being more descriptive. The difference is not huge, but it's there.
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FredBGG
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« Reply #167 on: March 06, 2013, 01:54:27 AM »
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That applies equally to the 35mm SLR model only the refresh rate there seems to be faster and the incremental "improvements" in larger steps.

Against that the 35mm SLR had big steps to take to catch up eg at the time of the P20 it was untouchable (base iso) to SLR (on pure quality) now with the D800E we have this thread which has moved from the SLR versatility argument to one on outright quality.
Arguably the versatility has been diminished with the requirement for optimum results to MLU and tripod the SLR. Has that levelled the playing field ?

D700 >>> D800    12MP >>> 36MP  One generation 3x the MP count as well as improved dynamic range.

The D7100 sensor scaled to FF would be 54MP

Also take away the tripod going hand held and compare the D800 with an image stabilized lens to the Hasselblad
at slow to slowish shutter speeds and the Nikon produce better results.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #168 on: March 06, 2013, 01:54:35 AM »
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Hi Jerome,

Working on it, will send you a PM with login info this evening.

Best regards
Erik
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #169 on: March 06, 2013, 02:29:53 AM »
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That church as its own wikipedia article...  Wink

Thanks. Too bad, I was in Munich in Jan 2011... wish I had known about it then.  Smiley

Cheers,
Bernard
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jerome_m
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« Reply #170 on: March 06, 2013, 06:33:55 AM »
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Hi Jerome,

Working on it, will send you a PM with login info this evening.

Best regards
Erik

I will send you the files, but I can already predict what you will find out: namely, that the two cameras show the same detail at the pixel level. Quite simply because your tests are designed in that way. By reducing all variables to the most limited set for which the D800 can equal a MF camera and refusing to consider MF cameras with higher resolution, you will necessary find out that the D800 gives equal results.

What I am trying to demonstrate here is that the problem in this discussion is not the cameras. The problem is the test. It is not a fair test. I post a couple of images which do not favour the D800, and immediately you argue that I should have used MLU and a Zeiss lens.  You did not argue once that I should have used a better Hasselblad or a different MF lens. You did not even answer when I suggested, twice, that a better MF should be used. You are biased.

Interestingly, the reason why the D800 looked less sharp is because Nikon chose to process the jpeg in that way. That alone should prove to all of us how flawed that particular test is, but nobody noticed.

I'll say it again: the real advantages of a MF camera over a D800 have nothing to do with how sharp each camera is at the pixel level. Now, find out what they really are.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #171 on: March 06, 2013, 01:23:26 PM »
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Hi,

I don't know what I would find.

Regarding high resolution MF I have published an article, comparing IQ-180 with a very good lens and the Nikon D800E also with a very good lens here (IQ 180 to the left Nikon to the right:





In the upper image I upsized the Nikon image to IQ180 image size and in the lower one the IQ180 image was downsized to Nikon size and still kept a significant advantage.

http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/71-mf-digital-myths-or-facts?start=5

In general I'm pretty sure that a larger sensor has advantages in two areas:

Higher MTF on fine detail.

Smoother midtones.

Smaller formats may compensate with better lenses and larger apertures. I am not sure this is the case, especially after I have tested an old Sonnar 150/4 comparing to an old Minolta 80-200/2.8 APO and a Sony 70-400/4-5.6G on a Sony Alpha 77. The data here are based an APS-C sensor. Little doubt that this lens would give superior performance on a much larger sensor.

http://echophoto.dnsalias.net/ekr/index.php/photoarticles/73-sonnar-150-cb-on-dslr-using-arax-tilt-adapter



Best regards
Erik




I will send you the files, but I can already predict what you will find out: namely, that the two cameras show the same detail at the pixel level. Quite simply because your tests are designed in that way. By reducing all variables to the most limited set for which the D800 can equal a MF camera and refusing to consider MF cameras with higher resolution, you will necessary find out that the D800 gives equal results.

What I am trying to demonstrate here is that the problem in this discussion is not the cameras. The problem is the test. It is not a fair test. I post a couple of images which do not favour the D800, and immediately you argue that I should have used MLU and a Zeiss lens.  You did not argue once that I should have used a better Hasselblad or a different MF lens. You did not even answer when I suggested, twice, that a better MF should be used. You are biased.

Interestingly, the reason why the D800 looked less sharp is because Nikon chose to process the jpeg in that way. That alone should prove to all of us how flawed that particular test is, but nobody noticed.

I'll say it again: the real advantages of a MF camera over a D800 have nothing to do with how sharp each camera is at the pixel level. Now, find out what they really are.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2013, 02:21:54 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #172 on: March 06, 2013, 03:10:59 PM »
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Hi,

I got two RAW files from "Jerome_m", thanks a lot!

Here is what I did:

Loaded both into Lightroom 4.3

Match exposure
Adjusted exposure to be similar on tablecloth at center
Adjusted white balance on table cloth at center
Activated removal of later chromatic aberration on both
Used similar sharpening on both (Amount 100 (104 on Nikon) and radius 1 all others at zero.

I'll recheck settings and images tomorrow, this is a first look.

Hasselblad left Nikon right.

If we had a higher resolution Hasselblad, then I would upsize the Nikon image to that size. But these images are same width (short dimension).

Sharpening setting always to taste, but the ones I use were quite OK in my eyes.

My findings? Somewhat more fine detail contrast on the Hasselblad. Corners on the Hasselblad sharper.

 

Best regards
Erik

Three crops, two central and one corner. All at actual pixels. The images have similar short side so I did resample neither. This corresponds to both images printed same size.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2013, 03:13:42 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

FredBGG
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« Reply #173 on: March 06, 2013, 08:18:34 PM »
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Hi,

I got two RAW files from "Jerome_m", thanks a lot!

Here is what I did:

Loaded both into Lightroom 4.3

Match exposure
Adjusted exposure to be similar on tablecloth at center
Adjusted white balance on table cloth at center
Activated removal of later chromatic aberration on both
Used similar sharpening on both (Amount 100 (104 on Nikon) and radius 1 all others at zero.

I'll recheck settings and images tomorrow, this is a first look.

Hasselblad left Nikon right.

If we had a higher resolution Hasselblad, then I would upsize the Nikon image to that size. But these images are same width (short dimension).

Sharpening setting always to taste, but the ones I use were quite OK in my eyes.

My findings? Somewhat more fine detail contrast on the Hasselblad. Corners on the Hasselblad sharper.

 

Best regards
Erik

Three crops, two central and one corner. All at actual pixels. The images have similar short side so I did resample neither. This corresponds to both images printed same size.


You should scale down the Nikon so that the subject matter is the same size on screen for the side by side images.

Here are your crops with the Nikon scales to match the Hasselblad



Here they are side by side.



or here http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8523/8534907099_f19fd1344c_o.jpg
« Last Edit: March 06, 2013, 09:04:58 PM by FredBGG » Logged
ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #174 on: March 06, 2013, 10:50:41 PM »
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Hi Fred,

I don't think so. I would normally scales the images so short size of the image would match, but in this case the image size are so close that I don't think it really matters, Nikon is 4912 and Hassy is 4872. Resizing affects image quality, BTW.

This is not a scientific test, like shooting res charts in lab conditions and evaluating MTF. In a scientific test distance and zooming would be adjusted so FOV would match. This is a real world comparison.

I would expect Hasselblad to have a small advantage, as the pixels are larger. Also the Nikon is OLP filtered and that would demand more sharpening than the blad, so optimal processing would be different. Here I choose a reasonable sharpening for the Nikon and the same sharpening also seems to be OK on the Hasselblad.

As Jerome pointed out, Hasselblad backs are available with higher resolution and that is not the case with Nikon.

Would I make one m wide prints (short side one meter) I'm pretty sure I couldn't tell prints apart if not looking for known problems. Like color moiré on some subjects or not very sharp corners on the Nikon image.

Jerome is also right that the seven year old Hasselblad still delivers very good image quality. A seven year old Nikon DSLR would not even come close. A very high end back will give much better sharpness, and I'm pretty sure there are limits on how far DSLRs can improve. I am sure that 50-60 MP are possible with DSLR but precision, lenses and alignment issues seem to be common with the Nikon D800, at least for really critical users.

Best regards
Erik





You should scale down the Nikon so that the subject matter is the same size on screen for the side by side images.


« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 12:32:42 AM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

jerome_m
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« Reply #175 on: March 07, 2013, 02:28:53 AM »
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As I predicted, you found out that the two cameras give very similar results at the pixel level. This is no surprise: if you design the test so that:
-the subject has the same size per pixel
-the optics are used in a way to minimise aberrations
-processing is the same
-colours are matched and
-there is enough light and not too much dynamic range,
you will find out that all cameras give similar results at the pixel level. The simple reason is that the only difference would be the presence or absence of an anti-moiré low pass filter. The test is designed to make all other factors equal.

But what you don't see from the pictures is more important:
-the H3D has much better and much more accurate AF, I must use live view on the D800 to come close (this was a real surprise of mine)
-the Hasselblad lenses are much better and perfectly usable wide open. Nikon does not have a prime coming close to the Hasselblad 28mm (which has about a 21mm equivalent FOV on the H3D-31). The 12-24 is Nikon's best wide angle lens. The only alternative would be the Zeiss 21mm and the Hasselblad lens is still better and has AF. Lenses always have been small format's Achille's heel
-the H3D has much, much better colours out of the box, especially skin colours. Sure, I can spend an hour to tweak the Nikon's output to look better, but for a pro in fashion, the capability to output perfect skin colours without effort is invaluable.
-the H3D is much easier to shoot tethered, which is again invaluable for many pros (most of them shoot catalogues pictures)
-medium format will make limited depth of field look nicer, which is essential for portraits. The reasons here are complex, I may come back to that later
-and of course recent MF cameras have much higher resolution.

Sure, the D800 has other advantages. I am not listing them here not because I want to minimise them, but because we all know about them. The point is that your "test" does not show all the practical advantages that count to people who buy MF cameras, because of the way it is designed.
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Rob C
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« Reply #176 on: March 07, 2013, 04:28:56 AM »
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Lenses always have been small format's Achille's heel



That's not my experience at all.

Having has Nikon F, F2 Photomic, F3 and F4s with an arsenal of primes from 24mm to 500mm and run two 500 Series Hasselblads beside them; having had Rollei TLR, Mamiya TLR, Bronica 6x7 and Pentax 67 ll, all with a range of primes. I would say that the opposite conclusion to yours is my view on the matter.

I've never owned but have printed from M3 with 21mm and that was out of this world. Leica is still regarded as maker of perhaps the world's best lenses and that reputation was built on 135 format.

The lure of going to 6x7 was always the imagined idea that one was going to spread the same optical quality over four times (+ or -) the area of the film: doesn't work like that. All you get is a different 'look' to your prints or transparencies because of smaller enlargement at same-size prints, and I've actually run tests using a 24mm x 36mm section of a 'blad negative and compared the same thing from a Nkon negative covering exactly the same subject area. The result: a cropped section of a 120 film neg compared with a full 135 neg does not offer the same quality: the full 135 format is better than the cropped 120 format. (I'm talking about using the same film in each format, of course.) Apparently, optical engineering does not allow for the simplistic idea of just scaling up and maintaining the same level of highest quality across formats.

Rob C
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jerome_m
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« Reply #177 on: March 07, 2013, 06:10:28 AM »
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That's not my experience at all.

Having has Nikon F, F2 Photomic, F3 and F4s with an arsenal of primes from 24mm to 500mm and run two 500 Series Hasselblads beside them; having had Rollei TLR, Mamiya TLR, Bronica 6x7 and Pentax 67 ll, all with a range of primes. I would say that the opposite conclusion to yours is my view on the matter.

I've never owned but have printed from M3 with 21mm and that was out of this world. Leica is still regarded as maker of perhaps the world's best lenses and that reputation was built on 135 format.

The lure of going to 6x7 was always the imagined idea that one was going to spread the same optical quality over four times (+ or -) the area of the film: doesn't work like that. All you get is a different 'look' to your prints or transparencies because of smaller enlargement at same-size prints, and I've actually run tests using a 24mm x 36mm section of a 'blad negative and compared the same thing from a Nkon negative covering exactly the same subject area. The result: a cropped section of a 120 film neg compared with a full 135 neg does not offer the same quality: the full 135 format is better than the cropped 120 format. (I'm talking about using the same film in each format, of course.) Apparently, optical engineering does not allow for the simplistic idea of just scaling up and maintaining the same level of highest quality across formats.

You are right, small format lenses can achieve a higher resolution on their format and MF lenses usually do not spread the same optical quality over a larger area (certainly for the ones designed for film). But this is not at all what I had in mind. What I meant is that, in current photographic practice, large format lenses can use a relatively primitive optical formula and that does not cause noticeable optical defects and photographers always experienced problems with small format lenses (unless -maybe- when the optical designer pulled all his tricks) and MF sat somewhere in between.

Part of the reason is that we do not need the same enlargements, as you rightfully noted. Another part is that we do not use the same apertures. A third reason is, in the case of MF, that the optical engineer allows the lenses to become quite large.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #178 on: March 07, 2013, 10:05:16 AM »
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Resolving power or contrast, take your pick. You cannot optimize a lens design for both at the same time. As the format gets smaller, you need to go toward resolving power and sacrifice contrast. That is why small format lenses, while having great resolving power, look flat.

But the "it is made for a larger format and so it will be worse than a smaller format lens" hypothesis can be taken so far. There are some great medium-format film lenses that are great on formats smaller than they were designed for.
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TMARK
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« Reply #179 on: March 07, 2013, 11:05:26 AM »
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Resolving power or contrast, take your pick. You cannot optimize a lens design for both at the same time. As the format gets smaller, you need to go toward resolving power and sacrifice contrast. That is why small format lenses, while having great resolving power, look flat.


This is not intended to fan any format war.

I don't know if this is true, mainly because my experience with certain M mount lenses.  The Summicrons I have experience with never appeared flat, in fact are very close to Mamiya 7 images of the same subject matter.  The Zeiss ZM mount 28 2.8 has more contrast than any lens I've ever used.  In any format.  It is also one of the sharpest lenses I've ever used.

I think "flatness" is more a function of shooting conditions (lighting, focal length, F stop, distance to subject), the sensor, and any post work put into a file (or the default curve of film). 
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