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Old 17/05/12, 13:07   #1 (permalink)
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Default I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

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Would you be using Nik to process your images?

I used to use it a lot for BW but with the M9, I actually just convert in PS (there's a bw option there) and do minor curves/brightness/contrast with layer adjustments. I don't find digital M grain to be annoying to be honest.

I'm thinking that it kind of defeats the purpose if you use Nik to make a Monochrom image look like Ilford or Neopan.

Having said that, what exactly is that "new aesthetic" that they have been talking about saying that the Monochrom isn't emulating film and that it has its own signature look? The photographs I have seen so far aren't yet that definitive in terms of "signature".

I'm asking just to see how the "general" populace will treat a Monochrom image.

Here's a sample image without Nik. I was asking myself how this same photograph would look like if it was shot with a Monochrom... if it would be any different in terms of "aesthetic".

I guess it's still early days and there are more questions than answers.

For me, I would probably eschew the Nik freebie and pursue the Monochrom path if and when. If it's going to be better than how I processed this image (and I'm not saying this is how it should be processed, btw. this is just how i do my bw's) then I'd be in deep trouble.

Would like to know what you folks think. Thank you.

resbwproc-L1005095.jpg
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Old 23/05/12, 22:22   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

That's a pretty spectacular image that I would be quite happy to have shot. Judging from the MM images shown at

May 10, Part 1: The Leica M-Monochrom review – Ming Thein | Photographer

I suspect that your foreground would be still sharper, but I'm not sure that would be an improvement.

Harry
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Old 24/05/12, 04:10   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

The camera is but one link in the picture chain that starts with you. Anyone who gets locked into an aesthetic dictated by the camera has things quite backwards IMO. There are no rules.

Some people make consistently fine pics with meager equipment, and others crap ones with the most expensive gear. That will never change.

Jeff
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Old 25/05/12, 15:12   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

Thanks, Harry. I do wonder about sharpness given the output I get with the 35 cron asph. I read Ming's review. Very practical pov.

Hi Jeff, I agree to a certain extent. Obviously, I don't have a definite opinion yet on the matter. Thanks for the input.

To be honest, the draw of Monochrom for me would be that i'm locking myself in to bw. That and better low light possibilities. But I haven't really seen yet how it's different image-wise per se. If they showed us the Monochrom photos and never told us that they shot it with the Monochrom, I'm not sure that we would be led to the conclusion that, hey, this is a new camera!
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Old 25/05/12, 15:28   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

Raul - that's a great image, but just imagine how much better it would be if you could see a tiny improvement in sharpness when zoomed-in at 200%!!!
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Old 25/05/12, 20:41   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

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Originally Posted by Raul View Post
If they showed us the Monochrom photos and never told us that they shot it with the Monochrom, I'm not sure that we would be led to the conclusion that, hey, this is a new camera!
That speaks to my points above. There are too many variables in the print chain to lead to any such conclusion. In a double blind test, most people couldn't tell the camera used in almost any unknown print. I've never looked at great print of a great pic and thought, oh what a great camera.

The MM clearly offers benefits in low light conditions. But again, looking at a print, the ISO used won't be known to anyone but the photographer.

If the tool helps one express, and execute, one's photographic intent, then great. If not, there are other options.

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Old 25/05/12, 23:43   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raul View Post

I'm thinking that it kind of defeats the purpose if you use Nik to make a Monochrom image look like Ilford or Neopan.
I think you are missing the point by a mile. Silver Efex replaces a myriad of functions in Photoshop that would need to be done with Levels and Masks. They can all be done in one workspace simply and in many ways more effectively. So adding film grain is a minor trick that Silver Efex can do. And given the banality of MM files out of the camera, they need some post processing.

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Old 25/05/12, 23:49   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

I'm all for better gear but I do the reality test with sharpness. Do i view the world that sharp like when i talk to people or watch a scenery? No formula there but its a good starting point for me... And the current crop already renders reality pretty well.

Your recent reply is what grounds me, Jeff. I enjoy very much using the M and it has become very personal at this point. Will definitely take my sweet time appreciating the little things that the Monochrom might bring to the table. Hope they startrolling out the Monochroms so that we can start taking it apart
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Old 25/05/12, 23:56   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: I'm just curious. If you had the chance to use the Monochrom...

Possibly right, Steve. I initially used film grain simulation on Nik via their film type choices to mitigate the noise that i was getting from My Canon files. Or fix banding issues when i got my exposure off. Not necessarily to get a 'film' look.

So yeah, lotsnof things you can do with Nik outside of that, no doubt. Having said that, i have been quite happy with notnusing it when i got my M. Of course, i have yet to print a 'noisy' M image. Forever learning.

Thanks, Steve
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