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Author Topic: Nikon Df. Pure photography vs. a million dials and buttons.  (Read 12742 times)
bcooter
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« Reply #20 on: November 06, 2013, 08:31:55 AM »
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It’s my view that the entire reason one might desire a ‘retro’ styled camera is simply to get rid of the additional stuff that digital introduced.

All any competent shooter needs is a focus ring on the lens, an aperture ring on the lens, a shutter speed control on the camera and, courtesy the digital revolution, a simple, non-menu method of selecting ISO and auto ISO.


Rob if you were shooting today you'd have to show the image to the AD and you can chose your way of doing it.

I've never had a client demand to see tethering at real time and if I like I could go back to shooting to card and downloading, (which isn't as slow as you think) but today half the trick isn't just the shot, it's proactively managing the room and the ability to listen to the client, crew, talent and respond, holding to all the creative briefs and objectives.

What I would actually like is a rack of screens, like 10 Ipads, that showed first frame to last and then rotated across as you worked.  That way the clients could see the body of work, rather than just one image in 27" detail.  That one image look always makes the digital tech constantly go back and forth.

I actually find most clients are trusting and don't get too deep into the minutia of every detail, as they are looking at the broad strokes, which really is the way to do it, so tethering isn't that bad, other than having to be hooked to a cord.

But honestly if you work professionally, nobody has buy a modern camera that is dumbed down.  For the price a d800 will do everything this camera does and more, but for more money and more analog my phase backs and contax is a dumbed down as it gets and they still work fine and at this point I guess are also retro.

We also run multiple video monitors on set, usually one large and two or three small lcds, mounted on stands.  I find early on everybody looks, but as the day and session continue the good creatives that know what they're doing (which is most today) watch the set, which is how it was done in the film days.

IMO

BC

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Rob C
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« Reply #21 on: November 06, 2013, 11:53:56 AM »
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Rob if you were shooting today you'd have to show the image to the AD and you can chose your way of doing it.

I've never had a client demand to see tethering at real time and if I like I could go back to shooting to card and downloading, (which isn't as slow as you think) but today half the trick isn't just the shot, it's proactively managing the room and the ability to listen to the client, crew, talent and respond, holding to all the creative briefs and objectives.

What I would actually like is a rack of screens, like 10 Ipads, that showed first frame to last and then rotated across as you worked.  That way the clients could see the body of work, rather than just one image in 27" detail.  That one image look always makes the digital tech constantly go back and forth.

I actually find most clients are trusting and don't get too deep into the minutia of every detail, as they are looking at the broad strokes, which really is the way to do it, so tethering isn't that bad, other than having to be hooked to a cord.

But honestly if you work professionally, nobody has buy a modern camera that is dumbed down.  For the price a d800 will do everything this camera does and more, but for more money and more analog my phase backs and contax is a dumbed down as it gets and they still work fine and at this point I guess are also retro.

We also run multiple video monitors on set, usually one large and two or three small lcds, mounted on stands.  I find early on everybody looks, but as the day and session continue the good creatives that know what they're doing (which is most today) watch the set, which is how it was done in the film days.

IMO

BC




BC, I have no beef with your point of view and the way you work today - I'm not crazy!

I'm just outlining what I would enjoy in a camera, and agreed, my pro days were a long time back.

Just a couple of hours ago I shot a Coke bottle on some rocks, and all I had to do once I had the image metered by Matrix (D700 with 500 reflex) was to wind the shutter wheel on before each subsequent shot as I ran a short series, reducing exposure each time to save the highlight rings. To me, that's the real joy of digital: I can run sequences without giving a hoot about material costs.

As it turned out, the first Matrixed shot was the one I chose to work with - go figure the value of doubting the camera's choices!

For me, this new camera and its price point indicates a non-pro market; pros can spend a lot more for obvious reasons and, I think, should. That's why I think they blew the opportunity of going cheap(ish) and making an attractive, ergonomically sound and cut down to essentials body for the amateur who already knows what he wants and really needs from a camera.

Ciao -

Rob C
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TMARK
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« Reply #22 on: November 06, 2013, 11:56:38 AM »
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Nice picture Rob.


BC, I have no beef with your point of view and the way you work today - I'm not crazy!

I'm just outlining what I would enjoy in a camera, and agreed, my pro days were a long time back.

Just a couple of hours ago I shot a Coke bottle on some rocks, and all I had to do once I had the image metered by Matrix (D700 with 500 reflex) was to wind the shutter wheel on before each subsequent shot as I ran a short series, reducing exposure each time to save the highlight rings. To me, that's the real joy of digital: I can run sequences without giving a hoot about material costs.

As it turned out, the first Matrixed shot was the one I chose to work with - go figure the value of doubting the camera's choices!

For me, this new camera and its price point indicates a non-pro market; pros can spend a lot more for obvious reasons and, I think, should. That's why I think they blew the opportunity of going cheap(ish) and making an attractive, ergonomically sound and cut down to essentials body for the amateur who already knows what he wants and really needs from a camera.

Ciao -

Rob C
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HSakols
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« Reply #23 on: November 06, 2013, 02:40:02 PM »
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This camera is like buying a pair of designer jeans.  It is purely fashion.
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #24 on: November 06, 2013, 02:51:31 PM »
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This camera is like buying a pair of designer jeans.  It is purely fashion.

This camera is being discussed and popping up in sth like 3 or 4 threads - so it must have hit something.
I approached it with a basically friendly attitude, but my impression is Nikon missed the point where
something good could have come out of it and thats 1st because of the premium price and 2nd some confusion in the concept:
- For the deliberate, concentrated, nature roaming  photographer-artist they should have put in the 36 MP sensor and  
- For the street photographer they omitted the better electronics.
- For both they omitted some other stuff.

The result is a piece of fashion evoking romantic feelings in the older guys sobbing over the loss of the "good old times".
Edit (added quote): One quote from one of the many articles on the net (forgot source, sorry dude .. ) "Too much form - too little function"
Its a pity - there was potential - and there still is potential to exploit.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2013, 03:26:04 PM by Christoph C. Feldhaim » Logged

MrSmith27
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« Reply #25 on: November 06, 2013, 03:16:38 PM »
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The result is a piece of fashion evoking romantic feelings in the older guys sobbing over the loss of the "good old times".
Its a pity - there was potential - and there still is potential to exploit.

It's like the Hameau de la Reine of the camera world. Well done, Nikon.


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LKaven
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« Reply #26 on: November 06, 2013, 03:30:05 PM »
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On a positive note, Bjorn had this to say about it:

"Just returned from my first encounter with the Df. It is a lovely camera and ergonomically it's a dream come true. Everything positioned where it should be. The viewfinder is much better than the sheer numbers would indicate and I had no problem whatsoever seeing the entire frame plus info below with my spectacles on. Focusing manual lenses was a breeze, even the 50/1.2, Noct, or my 35/1.4."
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TMARK
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« Reply #27 on: November 06, 2013, 03:34:01 PM »
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They left out the good part of the F3, the viewfinder.  

I have no problem with their marketing.  It will move boxes and cater to many people's wants. I'm not offended by this.  
 

This camera is being discussed and popping up in sth like 3 or 4 threads - so it must have hit something.
I approached it with a basically friendly attitude, but my impression is Nikon missed the point where
something good could have come out of it and thats 1st because of the premium price and 2nd some confusion in the concept:
- For the deliberate, concentrated, nature roaming  photographer-artist they should have put in the 36 MP sensor and 
- For the street photographer they omitted the better electronics.
- For both they omitted some other stuff.

The result is a piece of fashion evoking romantic feelings in the older guys sobbing over the loss of the "good old times".
Its a pity - there was potential - and there still is potential to exploit.
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TMARK
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« Reply #28 on: November 06, 2013, 03:35:19 PM »
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Is the new screen that good?  Maybe it is much improved.  We'll see.

On a positive note, Bjorn had this to say about it:

"Just returned from my first encounter with the Df. It is a lovely camera and ergonomically it's a dream come true. Everything positioned where it should be. The viewfinder is much better than the sheer numbers would indicate and I had no problem whatsoever seeing the entire frame plus info below with my spectacles on. Focusing manual lenses was a breeze, even the 50/1.2, Noct, or my 35/1.4."
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Rob C
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« Reply #29 on: November 06, 2013, 03:41:00 PM »
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The result is a piece of fashion evoking romantic feelings in the older guys sobbing over the loss of the "good old times".Its a pity - there was potential - and there still is potential to exploit.



Except that it’s not, Chris.

For the ‘older guys’ they should have done as I’ve written before: simplify to the basics of making an exposure, but on a sensor rather than a film.
This was never going to be a camera to suit all needs – there can’t be one.

The price point makes me sure it isn’t a serious pro body; it could have been a dedicated free-form shooter’s machine of choice – for the guy like me who hates lugging tripods around (I have a huge Gitzo that you’ve seen as well as a much more often employed little Slik, and also another big mother that used to end up holding a shoulder flash unit).

A friend on this board delights in using his M9 hand-held, which, for me, is what it’s all about unless you have to work to specific commissions that demand other things of you. I would have loved to have been able to continue to do the same with a dslr, but a lighter one with a real 100% screen that allows me to focus properly. I had a hell of a job today trying to focus the 8/500mm mirror lens against the light for the wee shot posted above; it’s a manual optic, obviously, and the green focus indicator light that the camera provides only works in the central spot with manual lenses – not much use when you are shooting downwards, slightly from above, and want to pin focus a bit higher than central…

Rob C
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Rob C
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« Reply #30 on: November 06, 2013, 03:45:02 PM »
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Nice picture Rob.



Thanks, T, here's another made just after the first version. Even more difficult to focus and keep steady(ish) in today's wind; tomorrow we've been told it'll probably rain, so striking while it's possible is best practice!

Rob C
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AFairley
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« Reply #31 on: November 06, 2013, 03:46:24 PM »
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the green focus indicator light that the camera provides only works in the central spot with manual lenses

Not to mention that the green dot stays lit over either side of the actual focusing point so that it does not give you the accuracy of, say, a split-image or microprism focusing screen.
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Guillermo Luijk
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« Reply #32 on: November 06, 2013, 03:47:10 PM »
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I am sorry I didn't read the entire thread. IMHO, such a multi-dialed body can only be fine for someone who tried this kind of camera in the past. For a newcomer (like me), such amount of single function dials is worse than a pain in the ass. I have got used to manually adjusting parameters (aperture and speed) without lifting my eye from the EVF, ISO preadjusted. This kind of camera doesn't add anything to me.

Regards
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #33 on: November 06, 2013, 03:48:28 PM »
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Except that it’s not, Chris.

For the ‘older guys’ they should have done as I’ve written before: simplify to the basics of making an exposure, but on a sensor rather than a film.
This was never going to be a camera to suit all needs – there can’t be one.

The price point makes me sure it isn’t a serious pro body; it could have been a dedicated free-form shooter’s machine of choice – for the guy like me who hates lugging tripods around (I have a huge Gitzo that you’ve seen as well as a much more often employed little Slik, and also another big mother that used to end up holding a shoulder flash unit).

A friend on this board delights in using his M9 hand-held, which, for me, is what it’s all about unless you have to work to specific commissions that demand other things of you. I would have loved to have been able to continue to do the same with a dslr, but a lighter one with a real 100% screen that allows me to focus properly. I had a hell of a job today trying to focus the 8/500mm mirror lens against the light for the wee shot posted above; it’s a manual optic, obviously, and the green focus indicator light that the camera provides only works in the central spot with manual lenses – not much use when you are shooting downwards, slightly from above, and want to pin focus a bit higher than central…

Rob C


Rob - You are totally not sobbing and my post was definitely not pointed at you. I myself like this camera as a design study -  my critique goes in a different direction.
Cheers
~Chris
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Vladimirovich
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« Reply #34 on: November 06, 2013, 04:02:03 PM »
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I am sorry I didn't read the entire thread. IMHO, such a multi-dialed body can only be fine for someone who tried this kind of camera in the past. For a newcomer (like me), such amount of single function dials is worse than a pain in the ass. I have got used to manually adjusting parameters (aperture and speed) without lifting my eye from the EVF, ISO preadjusted. This kind of camera doesn't add anything to me.

Regards


+100500
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BJL
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« Reply #35 on: November 06, 2013, 04:39:07 PM »
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On a positive note, Bjorn had this to say about it:

" ... I had no problem whatsoever seeing the entire frame plus info below with my spectacles on."
With the same 0.7x magnification and 100% coverage as all other current Nikon FX models, and no mention of added manual focusing aids, all I can think is that the Df has a higher eye-point to benefit spectacle wearers: the D800 is only 17mm and the D4 18mm, with the D610 surprising the highest at 21mm. That would both salvage one much-loved feature of the F3HP, and fit with the idea of being targeted at an older demographic. (I should refrain from saying "and hipsters wearing their Buddy Holly glasses".)

But I should also say that I am not competely down on this camera, despite its total lack of relevance to my photographic approach and my skepticism about a few of the design choices being driven by "image" rather than practicality. I have no complaint about the price, since it will clearly sell in far smaller numbers than recent entry-level 35mm format models like the D610, which can only hit that roughly $2000 price target through relatively high volume. The problem with the various proposals for a more minimal "just the features that I want" design is that there are numerous different versions of that minimal feature list, each of which would sell in even smaller numbers, requiring an even higher price.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2013, 04:44:56 PM by BJL » Logged
Rob C
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« Reply #36 on: November 06, 2013, 04:52:52 PM »
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1.   (I should refrain from saying "and hipsters wearing their Buddy Holly glasses".)
 
2.   The problem with the various proposals for a more minimal "just the features that I want" design is that there are numerous different versions of that minimal feature list, each of which would sell in even smaller numbers, requiring an even higher price.


!. Would John Lennon ones be acceptable instead?

2. Not really; minimum means minimum. You might have a point if you are thinking in terms of 'additional options' but that would negate the point of a camera such as I'd have hoped to find available, and have outlined elsewhere. A Nikon F's functions are where it's at; just use a sensor instead of a film. Though I'd like having it, I'd even accept no auto ISO if it made the thing a flier. Not an FM or FM2: they were pretty flimsy compared to the real deal F and F2 and didn't give you that vital 100% coverage of WYSIWYG. All you got was a higher flash synch, the only reason I had a couple of them in tow for such emergencies Why bother with a simple digital copy of a flawed film original? If you see what I mean.

;-)

Rob C
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TMARK
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« Reply #37 on: November 06, 2013, 05:55:28 PM »
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Nice abstraction.  The perfect form of a coke bottle and the rings, nice and desaturated.  All shapes from a French Curve.  Great.


Thanks, T, here's another made just after the first version. Even more difficult to focus and keep steady(ish) in today's wind; tomorrow we've been told it'll probably rain, so striking while it's possible is best practice!

Rob C
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BJL
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« Reply #38 on: November 06, 2013, 06:29:48 PM »
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2. Not really; minimum means minimum.
Rob, what I mean is that different people have different lists of the simplest configuration that they will accept. I am sure that your list and mine are very different!

For example,
-- some people's idea of a simple good DSLR design include a high magnification split-screen manual focusing device and external single-purpose dials for all settings; others call for a body of minimum size and complexity partly through a more modest VF and having just one or two multi-purpose dials;
-- some want no dials on the body for aperture and exposure compensation, doing it all with an aperture ring on the lens and shutter speed dial atop the body; others demand the simplicity of being able to settle the left hand under the lens at the balance point, with lens design and operation kept simple by having no aperture ring, through making all adjustments with dials on the body operated with the right hand;
-- some people would simplify by eliminating the rear screen; others would simplify by avoiding having to look at multiple dials in different places to check settings, by having all relevant information displayed in one place  --- on that rear screen.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2013, 06:32:25 PM by BJL » Logged
Fine_Art
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« Reply #39 on: November 06, 2013, 08:12:15 PM »
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I quite like dials and switches as this beauty shows.
And it even has a rear LCD too  Roll Eyes

It's actually quite nice v the Canon "ish" buttons only approach (or mostly buttons)

But if you are doing a MF film camera with basically a digital sensor, you could cut down the controls significantly
I would not remove the rear LCD, but I would limit the camera to "no gimmicks" just important areas and a much trimmed down menu system








I love my 7 Limited. The feel in the hand is perfect. The top rotary dials are simple and effective without the concerns of water getting in, like open side doors to electronics. If only I could put the D600 sensor in it...
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