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Author Topic: COPYING GEAR: Low cost DB system: HB ELD 555+Leaf Aptus II 28mp(used) How good?  (Read 3383 times)
Sunny Alan
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« on: August 21, 2013, 07:05:54 AM »
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I am looking for a solution for art copying for life-size enlargements, max. size 6x5 ft. (If bigger, I will stitch.).
it involves oil paintings and murals for an Art reproduction start-up.

Thought of a DSLR system with my 5D2+the best macro lens.
Thought just try if something better available at a low budget ($3000), but with considerable quality advantage.
Sorry, no film. None to develop them locally.

Any advises most welcome...
« Last Edit: August 31, 2013, 10:39:35 AM by Sunnyalanoly » Logged
byarvin
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« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2013, 07:14:44 AM »
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How about a second-hand scanning back? They'll easily deliver the quality and can be found for very little.

Good luck!
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torger
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« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2013, 09:33:07 AM »
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Doing copying right is a quite complicated task, need proper lighting setup etc.

Selling the Canon 5D2 and getting a new D800 (significantly better sensor for base ISO work) with a great lens is probably the best you can do for a low budget.

For $3000 you can if you are lucky get a 22 megapixel digital back -- without camera. That 22 megapixel back will produce cleaner files than the 5Dmk2, but not match the D800. To really get the MF quality advantage in copy work you need a bigger budget.

The scanning back idea could work though, but it can be hard to find a system on the market that fits your needs. Really old scanning backs are not that good quality and may also have issues in the mechanics (moving parts age...)
« Last Edit: August 21, 2013, 09:34:55 AM by torger » Logged
Doug Peterson
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« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2013, 12:22:53 PM »
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Agree with the above. At the budget you specify you are better off with a dSLR.

Don't get me wrong. We make high-end art repro solutions and believe (and can empirically demonstrate) that our solutions far outperform any dSLR and make a more rugged and reliable industrial-grade solution.

But not for $3k.

As mentioned above a used scan back would easily fit this price range and could provide a higher resolution, and very very good color with several caveats:
- much, much, much slower to work with (both to focus, establish focus, and expose)
- hard to find a used scan back in great condition since they are a heavily mechanical device and wear out over time and almost all used scan backs at this point will be a decade or more old
- warranty/service/replacement-parts is tricky depending on which brand you go with. Phase One actually still services it's Firewire-based scan backs, but I couldn't promise how long that will be the case given the most recent one was released 13 years ago.
- software/OS support will be tricky depending on which one you go with. Some are still supported in recent OSs, others require old OS versions and in some cases proprietary or obscure connection methods like SCSI.
- you must have a very stable platform, be careful of ambient vibration in the room, and have a light source which is either fully-continuous (like tungsten) or very carefully selected to avoid flicker or waviness of lighting
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HarperPhotos
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« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2013, 03:50:29 PM »
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Hello,

For my art reproduction work I use a Nikon D800E, Horseman VCC adaptor and Rodenstock Rodagon and Apo Rodagon lenses.

http://www.harperphotos.com/art-reproduction/

These lenses a superb for this sort of photography. Fantastic resolution and no CA.

I used to use a Mamiya 645AFDII camera and Leaf Aptus 75 back but this system became redundant with the arrival of the Nikon D800E.

By the way my old Horseman VCC system is for sale and is under $3,000 US.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/221263459515?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

Cheers

Simon
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Simon Harper
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Sunny Alan
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« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2013, 10:55:10 PM »
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Thanks for all for the insights...

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/685121-REG/Horseman_21766_VCC_Pro_View_Camera.html
BTW, what about this system offered by B&H photo ?
I hope I can connect my 5D2 to this bellows system with a large/medium format lens and I am done ?
Any other gadget to be added to this to work?
When B&H photo offers, one can buy without fear, I hope.

Which lens to enable me to get a 50MP image file ?

A crucial question: how easily I can mount and dismount my 5D2 after the copy work for out door uses or I will have to mount it permanently dedicated to copying alone?

Hi Simon,
Your 'old Horseman VCC system' is film or digital?
I dont take anything film.

Thanks for your link which lead me to the B&H site !  Grin



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HarperPhotos
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« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2013, 12:34:01 AM »
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Hello,

I have just purchased the new Horseman VCC unit to replace the one I am selling on EBay. The reason I am selling the old unit is because I have sold all of my medium format equipment.

One major fault with the new Horseman VCC adaptor which I only realized after receiving it is when the camera is in a vertical position you can not attach a flash transmitter to the cameras hot shoe.

Also you cannot attach a flash PC cord and a Nikon electronic cable release due to the the design of the metal arm which holds the mount. The only way to fix the problem is to attach a Nikon PK-11a extension tube to the mount which then can give enough space to attach a flash PC cord and Nikon electronic cable release.

If I had known about the major design fault I would not have purchased the new version. Also the rear shift mechanism is very stiff to the point of removing skin. I have send emails to Horseman USA and the Kenco the Japanese's owner and have not received a reply.

So if I had not invested money into the new system I would gladly have keeped the Horseman I am selling on EBay as I believe it to be more user friendly.

I donít see the point in using large/medium format lens and the Rodenstock Rodagon lenses are equal to non.

Cheers

Simon
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Simon Harper
Harper Photographics Ltd
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Auckland, New Zealand
Sunny Alan
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« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2013, 12:53:50 AM »
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Wow, this Bellows-gear made me running down to the attic where I abandoned my old Agfa Gevaert cabinet-size Enlarger with bellows and a "Rodenstock Ysarex f150mm' and another 'Cherry-L f-105mm' lenses...
Lenses are fungus affected, otherwise mechanically still ok.

I found the same/similar is used by Horseman bellows-gear.

Is it possible to fabricate a DB system using my 5D2, that may be ugly to see but perform my copying?
(The joy of fabricating a working rig is tremendous...)  Roll Eyes

Any help please...
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Sunny Alan
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« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2013, 10:01:43 AM »
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Hi Simon,
Your 'old Horseman VCC system' is film or digital?

Still you didnt tell me...
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Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2013, 09:02:23 AM »
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We just started shooting large stuff in a repro set up, stuff a meter long and wide. We're using a D800e with 60mm macro lens on a Kaiser RTX (I think it's called) copy stand with profoto D1's in strip boxes. An image that size we are stitching with approx 6 frames. The final image is 80+ megapixels and gorgeous, hugely zoomable for studying the works. It is however our documents and travel setup which is why we went with the DSLR, that and budgeting as we already have a MFDB solution for our repro shooting of books. We could try shooting it with a single frame but we just wouldn't have sufficient resolution for our needs.

 
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BobDavid
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« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2013, 09:05:11 PM »
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Serious, and I do mean serious, repro work requires a medium format multi-shot camera or back ala Sinar or Hasselblad.  Sharpness is certainly obtainable with the Nikon d800/60mm micro g combo, but good luck with trying to obtain subtle tones and hues accurately. It really is hit or miss with the Nikon. If your clients aren't picky, go with the Nikon setup. If you want to move into a cheap medium format solution capable of capturing accurate color and nuance, look at the Sinar 43H 16/4 shot back in the LL for sale section. Great back for the money, however you'd need to work with someone like Michael Ulsaker (Ulsaker Studio in Connecticut) to integrate it with an older Mac and a camera body. If you are able to spend beyond $3K, check out the Sinar 54H. Again, Ulsaker Studio is a good source.


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HarperPhotos
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« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2013, 10:03:44 PM »
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Hello,

My old Horseman VCC is film and digital.

Cheers

Simon
« Last Edit: August 24, 2013, 03:56:26 PM by HarperPhotos » Logged

Simon Harper
Harper Photographics Ltd
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http://www.facebook.com/harper.photographics

Auckland, New Zealand
Sunny Alan
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« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2013, 09:45:28 AM »
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"Hasselblad 500C/M Camera Outfit with 80mm f2.8 Zeiss Planar CF T* Lens & FB"

I found this Hasselblad is for sale @$1000.

Is this good for my purpose, esp. the lens?
 
And the price?
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SeanBK
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« Reply #13 on: August 25, 2013, 12:12:52 PM »
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Quote Simon, Harper Photos..........If I had known about the major design fault I would not have purchased the new version. Also the rear shift mechanism is very stiff to the point of removing skin. I have send emails to Horseman USA and the Kenco the Japanese's owner and have not received a reply.

Simon,
 Sorry to hear @ your problems & u might have already tried it but O thought I'd mention the  Really Right Stuffs' brackets or just call them or drop an e-mail, they really are helpful.
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HarperPhotos
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« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2013, 03:30:15 PM »
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Hi Sean,

Thatís for the advise. With the addition of the Nikon PK-11a extension tube it has solved my problem. I have attached Velcro to the left side of the rear L bracket so my Pocket Wizard transmitter can attach. I have loosed the rear shift by vigorously shifting the rear standard left and right while wearing leather gloves. Fortunately it still has left and right shift on the front lens standard so it isnít a biggie. I was more upset with the lack of quality control on the rear standard I would normal expect from a well respected company like Horseman.

Cheers

Simon
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Simon Harper
Harper Photographics Ltd
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Auckland, New Zealand
ondebanks
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« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2013, 07:00:10 AM »
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"Hasselblad 500C/M Camera Outfit with 80mm f2.8 Zeiss Planar CF T* Lens & FB"

I found this Hasselblad is for sale @$1000.

Is this good for my purpose, esp. the lens?
 
And the price?

Well, not sure about the price, but it doesn't suit your purpose.

1) The lens is just a standard lens, not optimized for copy work. You'd be much better off with a macro lens (which, for that body, would be a 120mm macro).

2) You'd be paying for a film back, but your first post said "Sorry, no film."

3) The 500C/M camera body works fine with digital backs, but compared to a 645 format camera from Mamiya/Contax/Hasselblad/Pentax, you get no autofocus nor focus confirmation.

The most cost effective *MFD* system for your usage would be, IMO:
* Mamiya 645AFD body (~$500)
* Mamiya 120/4 macro lens (~$300 for manual focus/manual aperture version, double that for the manual focus/auto aperture version, quadruple that for the auto focus/auto aperture version...they are all the same optically)
* Mamiya ZD 22MP back (~$2500). The Leaf Aptus 22 has the same sensor but may be preferred and probably costs more like ~$3000. DB prices vary widely however.
* LOTS of lighting (the ZD back does not do well higher than ISO 50).

These are all used market prices, BTW.

Whether this is better than a D800E with a Nikon macro lens is a good question. You have fewer pixels with the Mamiya, but double the sensor size and a flat subject (no DOF or diffraction issues) means those pixels will be crisper than the Nikon's.

Ray
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Sunny Alan
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« Reply #16 on: August 26, 2013, 11:05:39 AM »
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Thanks a lot Ray...
You put all in a comprehensive manner.
(I respect other advises very much too, I am on a learning curve)

Yes once more I confirm NO film.
(I heard some studio with it's veteran owner is still developing 4x5, but now his son says no more cut-film, not available.)

1. Yes, the "Mamiya 645AFD body (~$500)+ Mamiya 120/4 macro lens (~$300 + Mamiya ZD 22MP back (~$2500). For copying manual focusing is best. And I dont think it is good to take out to shoot, I am keeping it dedicated for copying.
If I go for the Leaf if total $3800.

I am interested to study your later part, the DSLR system.
I got my 5d2. Can I utilise it with the BEST macro lens, to fetch a similar result of mega pixels? With stitching and/or image stacking ?

What do you think of this: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/685121-REG/Horseman_21766_VCC_Pro_View_Camera.html

Is it makes qualitative improvement of a large image captured on a FF sensor? With stitching?
« Last Edit: August 26, 2013, 11:08:00 AM by Sunnyalanoly » Logged
Doug Peterson
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« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2013, 01:06:47 PM »
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I got my 5d2. Can I utilise it with the BEST macro lens, to fetch a similar result of mega pixels? With stitching and/or image stacking ?

You're assuming that resolution (number of pixels) is the only important spec for art repro.

Color discrimination, color accuracy, and color linearity (color being the same from a shadow to a highlight) are all, in my opinion, more important than resolution (though obviously resolution is important as well).

One cannot stitch their way to better color Smiley.
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Sunny Alan
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« Reply #18 on: August 26, 2013, 02:01:50 PM »
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No, resolution alone cannot make a reproduction Limited Edition canvas print,color is the most important aspect !
But having said that, that doesnt mean resolution has ne value.
Unless enough resolution, how can I make life size enlargement?
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Sunny Alan
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« Reply #19 on: August 31, 2013, 10:36:31 AM »
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I located the below for sale, asking $4000. How good is it for the price? Or what is a bargain price?

"Hasselblad ELD555 Camera'sOriginat Box
HB ELD555 Camera - Mint condition.
No cosmetic damages. Look line new.
Leaf Aptus II -28mp digital Back - Not much used.
Clean sensor.
HB 100mm CF Lense_ special purpose lenses for
Product Photography _ Used very carefully,
Clean lense, good quality.
Waist Level focusing hood.
Viewing glass, correctly marked for Aptus II 65
Digital sensor.
Bay 60 Pro. Bellows Hood ( New - Mint ) with
Pro shade masks.( can use for any 60Bay lens)"


Here is the total system with many other items(may be not useful for me):
https://mail-attachment.googleusercontent.com/attachment/u/0/?ui=2&ik=d4f5fbd014&view=att&th=140d3d744c06e0db&attid=0.2&disp=inline&realattid=f_hl0nt5hv1&safe=1&zw&saduie=AG9B_P-OMbZkDtwTV_KJctBnj-gh&sadet=1377946253519&sads=iF2Tq96sM7GqBkcNgEyDzgK1GKA

Please advise...
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