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Who came to the S from large format film?


djmay
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I'm still a large format user but not as much as I used to, unfortunately. There are times when I would shoot it exclusively given the chance. The cost of doing so no longer makes it possible really. To me it's true and pure photography. Control over every element. Also the convenience. Heading out with the kit and truck load of double of darks is, well, a mad mans game. lol

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Jesse, I am not a LF shooter, but would like to hear if you think the S matches up well with 4x5 or larger for IQ.   I arrived at S from a Contax 645 with a Phase One P30+ back.  I was always happy with the Contax/Phase until I compared image quality, the S2 is superior with either Contax or Leica lenses.     

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Jesse, I am not a LF shooter, but would like to hear if you think the S matches up well with 4x5 or larger for IQ.   I arrived at S from a Contax 645 with a Phase One P30+ back.  I was always happy with the Contax/Phase until I compared image quality, the S2 is superior with either Contax or Leica lenses.     

I would welcome reply from other LF users also.

 

There are different aspects of IQ. One that is important to me is tonality, the way in which transitions from light to dark are very smooth. The S is very good with this. However, I have not yet done a print from the S on photographic silver gelatin paper, so the S prints are not as good as my LF darkroom prints. I have done prints from the S on Fuji and Kodak photographic paper, with very good results. LF tonal quality is evident even in small prints (A4-A3, or 11x14 inch). I have not used LF for the purpose of large prints, although that is another advantage.

 

With respect to detail, at the sizes that I have printed, the S is about as good as LF. However, the largest I have printed is 50cm (20 inches) on the short side. It is probable that as the size increases LF detail will be better.

 

Jesse

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I began in photography in 1975, and am a professional. I am specialized in the reproduction of art, and in architecture, cityscape and landscape, so I need a very precise technique and my tools must deliver huge amounts of detail... My main cameras were 4x5 and 8x10 (I had everything, from wooden folding to the Arca-Swiss F 8x10), in the 90's 6x9 and 6x12 (Cambo Wide and Silvestri). I always printed my own B/W stuff, and had two enlargers, a Beseler 4x5 and a large and heavy no-name 8x10, both with cold light heads.

 

I made the jump to digital 15 years ago, my first serious camera was the Canon EOS 5D, but in 2009 I changed to the Leica M8, then came the M9 etc. I have the S006 since nearly 2 years ago. I do print with Epson, A2 is the biggest size. When I need bigger copies I rely on workshops which do the job very well.

 

What I am going to say now is based solely on my ample experience in making and evaluating physical copies, on paper. I do have an educated eye, and know what I have to look after: that's my job, and I am in it since 40 years ago. The same happens with an experienced musician, who senses immediately when something is or not ok in a piece of music... nothing to wonder about, this is how things must be.

 

In my opinion, the quality a Leica M240 delivers is equivalent to medium format film. The MM246 and the S006 are like large format film, the latter giving a higher level of detail.

 

A close friend of mine makes huge copies (1,5 m wide) from 2 stitched M240 frames: the quality is amazing.

 

The point in working with a view camera is for me the possibility of shifting, either the lens or the back. Swings and tilts are for me only for improving the sharpness.

 

My main equipment is, therefore, the M246 and the 28 PC Super Angulon. The S would be perfect if a shifting lens would exist... Now I am going to try the new small Sinar with the Sinar/Leica 30/45 back, based on the S007 sensor. What will happen with a Rodenstock or Schneider large format digital lens working together with the S007 sensor? I think the results will be fantastic... 

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Jesse,

 

I came to the S by way of large format, a Linhof Master Technika, which I am still using it.

 

I was new to digital and I was looking for a digital system with a good IQ while being more practical when traveling. Going through security with a 4x5 was getting painful. 

 

As mentioned above, there are many aspects of IQ, from resolution, to tonality, rendition of highlights, aesthetics etc. I personally think that 4x5 continues to have an edge over the S006 and I would think that a 8x10 could still go head-to-head with higher resolution medium format system, albeit I haven't had the opportunity to compare prints made with 8x10 side by side with a let's say 60-100mp back. 

 

I have prints in black and white shot with the S in a crop square format of 30x30 inches and the quality is actually very very good. At the same time I have 30x45 inches (not cropped) color prints that are good, but not as good as the black and white prints.

 

However, I still prefer other prints made from a drum scanned 4x5 negative (one is 40x50 inches print, the other one is a 30x60 inches print from a cropped 4x5 negative) that have something special and are more pleasant to my eyes. This is not a scientific comparison, this is simply my perception. I found that for very large prints film has a better rendition, a more pleasant aesthetics, a smoother grain (if there is any). I also think that at this size the 37mp of the S are not enough. 

 

My two cents, cheers

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Jesse,

 

I came to the S by way of large format, a Linhof Master Technika, which I am still using it.

 

I was new to digital and I was looking for a digital system with a good IQ while being more practical when traveling. Going through security with a 4x5 was getting painful.

 

As mentioned above, there are many aspects of IQ, from resolution, to tonality, rendition of highlights, aesthetics etc. I personally think that 4x5 continues to have an edge over the S006 and I would think that a 8x10 could still go head-to-head with higher resolution medium format system, albeit I haven't had the opportunity to compare prints made with 8x10 side by side with a let's say 60-100mp back.

 

I have prints in black and white shot with the S in a crop square format of 30x30 inches and the quality is actually very very good. At the same time I have 30x45 inches (not cropped) color prints that are good, but not as good as the black and white prints.

 

However, I still prefer other prints made from a drum scanned 4x5 negative (one is 40x50 inches print, the other one is a 30x60 inches print from a cropped 4x5 negative) that have something special and are more pleasant to my eyes. This is not a scientific comparison, this is simply my perception. I found that for very large prints film has a better rendition, a more pleasant aesthetics, a smoother grain (if there is any). I also think that at this size the 37mp of the S are not enough.

 

My two cents, cheers

All good points. I have yet to drum scan a 4x5 negative. Another to do. The list never ends.

Jesse

 

Sent from my Lenovo YT3-850L using Tapatalk

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I own 60MP. I have used 80 and 100 quite a bit. Large format still wins.

 

When I first bought 60MP I had thought there wasn't much difference and that it rivalled 4x5, but intact there is. Particularly noticeable on very large prints. Digital falls apart quickly where it finds the physical boundary of the pixel which is why low pixel count cameras like the S have a limitation that is more noticeable compared with other high res offerings. Interpolation is interpolation. It's false information. Even between 40 and 60MP there is a quite a noticeable difference.

 

Large Format Tonality and colour graduations are better. It has a natural sharpness that is not seen in digital. Some people say it's soft but sharp. Generally speaking, continuous tone is broken up, softened and more blended in with surrounding tone and colour because grain is stacked on top of each other, it's boundary is less defined, rather than side by side and uniformly defined like a pixel and this has a far more natural effect on the viewers eye and brain. So it's mixing a wider range of colour and tone that digital can. Digital tonality is linear and needs work to look like film, and it can't really be matched. It adds to the harshness and manipulations in post look more false the more you make, computers don't know what organic colour is and it's reliant upon the operators eye and also equipment. That is a complicated set of variables. What our eye sees and what our brain makes of it are two different things.

 

Take a photo of green grass, one digital and one film. You will see the film image, rich with a far wider range of colour and tone. Do it with the digital and the grass will look much more even in colour, like the grass is just one colour, it looks fine when you seem them individually but side by side the digital looks completely false and once you've seen it it's difficult to unsee it.

 

But digital has a clarity that punches above it's image surface size that can make it appear it has more resolution. But drum scanned large format is still on top. Digital obviously wins on convenience and what it provides has been good enough for many for quite a while. But there is a definite movement going on at the moment and there are a lot of people going back to film.

Edited by Paul J
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I own 60MP. I have used 80 and 100 quite a bit. Large format still wins.

 

When I first bought 60MP I had thought there wasn't much difference and that it rivalled 4x5, but intact there is. Particularly noticeable on very large prints. Digital falls apart quickly where it finds the physical boundary of the pixel which is why low pixel count cameras like the S have a limitation that is more noticeable compared with other high res offerings. Interpolation is interpolation. It's false information. Even between 40 and 60MP there is a quite a noticeable difference.

 

Large Format Tonality and colour graduations are better. It has a natural sharpness that is not seen in digital. Some people say it's soft but sharp. Generally speaking, continuous tone is broken up, softened and more blended in with surrounding tone and colour because grain is stacked on top of each other, it's boundary is less defined, rather than side by side and uniformly defined like a pixel and this has a far more natural effect on the viewers eye and brain. So it's mixing a wider range of colour and tone that digital can. Digital tonality is linear and needs work to look like film, and it can't really be matched. It adds to the harshness and manipulations in post look more false the more you make, computers don't know what organic colour is and it's reliant upon the operators eye and also equipment. That is a complicated set of variables. What our eye sees and what our brain makes of it are two different things.

 

Take a photo of green grass, one digital and one film. You will see the film image, rich with a far wider range of colour and tone. Do it with the digital and the grass will look much more even in colour, like the grass is just one colour, it looks fine when you seem them individually but side by side the digital looks completely false and once you've seen it it's difficult to unsee it.

 

But digital has a clarity that punches above it's image surface size that can make it appear it has more resolution. But drum scanned large format is still on top. Digital obviously wins on convenience and what it provides has been good enough for many for quite a while. But there is a definite movement going on at the moment and there are a lot of people going back to film.

 

 

I agree with you on this, perhaps this could be related with the greater affinity between the grain structure in film and the microstructure of the visible reality, because both structures are random and chaotic.

 

A sensor is pure ratio, everything's arranged in columns and rows.

 

I remember, talking back in the 90's with a guy from the graphic industry, his mention of a so-called 'stochastic' screen.

 

This could be the next development in sensor technology: achieving the randomness of film grain, its 'fractality'...

Edited by Manolo Laguillo
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LF is inherently superior in terms of the overall quality of the photograph, I grant you....

However MF is an ideal compromise re versatility and portability..

My thoughts!

Albert  

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I'm sort of going the other way... first 4x5 shot just today with Graflex Super Graphic, Ilford HF5+, 135mm @f/16, 1/200 sec

 

 

No, I'm not giving up the S anytime soon. Even the Mamiya 7II is a different and fun medium.

 

--Matt

Edited by mgrayson3
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Ugh. Why can't I edit that post. It is, of course Ilford HP5+, not HF5+. I like the more contrasty FP4+, but don't think hand-held large format ISO 100 is going to work. I may just have to get out the tripod (or one of a half dozen tripods scattered around the place 

 ).

 

 

--Matt

Edited by mgrayson3
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Film is definitely gathering momentum at the moment and I hope it continues.

Me too. I have a freezer full of Kodak readyloads and Fuji quickloads in 4x5. I am trying to corner the market much like Hunt brothers did with silver in late 70's. I the outcome is different.

http://www.buyandhold.com/bh/en/education/history/2000/hunt_bros.html

David

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Guest NEIL-D-WILLIAMS

Well I'm going the other way.;

After starting off with a cropped sensor Nikon D7000 in 2010, then moving onto a D3s followed buy a M9, MM and M240, I then moved to a S006 (I loved that camera) I then got into shooting film with a M6ttl and progressed to a Hasselblad 503CW. I upgraded my S006 to a S007 and now I have just bought this

 

 

 

I am so excited about shooting this camera when I get back to KL in 3 weeks time..............I just know its going to knock spots of what I already have....we will see

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