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Tony C.

How sharp is the 75mm Summicron?

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Very.

 

Taken this morning at the Saratoga racetrack in upstate NY.

 

Regards,

 

Tony C.

 

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Impressive—but we knew all along that this is a super lens. Now the really interesting test would have been a neck-to-neck race between the Summicron, the Summilux and the Cosina-Voigtländer 75mm. They are all good, but different. The test should of course be run at 2.8, same time, same place, same subject! Can it be arranged?

 

The old man from the Age When 75mm Meant Roll Film

 

P.S. Keeping in mind that the eye of the camera is less important than that of the photographer ...

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Impressive—but we knew all along that this is a super lens. Now the really interesting test would have been a neck-to-neck race between the Summicron, the Summilux and the Cosina-Voigtländer 75mm. They are all good, but different. The test should of course be run at 2.8, same time, same place, same subject! Can it be arranged?

 

The old man from the Age When 75mm Meant Roll Film

 

P.S. Keeping in mind that the eye of the camera is less important than that of the photographer ...

 

 

That comparison was already done on the Sean Reid website. The CV lens out-resolved the Leica in the corners, believe it or not.

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That comparison was already done on the Sean Reid website. The CV lens out-resolved the Leica in the corners, believe it or not.

 

Well, my Summicron drive is now under control ...

 

BTW I imagine that the horse was shot on auto. One half to one stop less, that picture would have been fabulous. Now, the highlights seem burnt out.

 

The Same Old Man

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I imagine that the horse was shot on auto. One half to one stop less, that picture would have been fabulous. Now, the highlights seem burnt out.

 

The Same Old Man

 

Now that comment raises an interesting question. I always appreciate constructive criticism, and my post processing skills can certainly use improvement. In this case, however, I shot at –1/3 stop, and chose not to further tone down the highlights in Lightroom. The reasons are that when the morning sun strikes the coat of a wet Thoroughbred horse, some of the the highlights often do appear – to the naked eye – to be quite harsh, or blown (or "burnt"). Also, had I further underexposed or toned down the highlights, the brilliance of the light striking the wet coat – precisely the dynamic which attracted me to the scene – would have been muted.

 

So does it necessarily make sense to correct that look during post processing? I'm not so sure. And the same question could apply to the powerful 'Fill Light' function. It's very easy (and at times tempting) to use that function in order to reveal detail which the naked eye might not have been capable of processing.

 

Regards,

 

Tony C.

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Well, if this was a deliberate exposure decision, then I do respect it! There are no absolutes in photography – I have met too many absolutists to believe in them.

 

And yes, some of those highlights (though not all of them, I believe) were probably specular. Those, being actual mirrorings of a light source, are quite legitimately beyond the normal dynamic range, which is of course based on diffuse highlights.

 

The old man from the Age of Exposure Guesstimation

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Well, my Summicron drive is now under control ...

 

The Same Old Man

 

???

 

Also, the Summicron out-resolves the CV on center. But they're both excellent lenses and resolution, of course, is only part of the picture.

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the advantage to further underexposure would be that you have some headroom left in the highs so that you still have some highlight control left in post.

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the advantage to further underexposure would be that you have some headroom left in the highs so that you still have some highlight control left in post.

 

Right. Now using the M8 is much like using slide film. And with slide film, I would have bracketed that exposure. Bracketing used to be normal pro procedure. With the M8 it is both easy (don't bother with menus, just switch over to manual) and free of cost, as long as you carry a spare battery and ditto card.

 

The old man from the Age of Kodachrome I

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Yes, but only on the shadow side. This is why I want a way of permanently biasing exposure according to our exposure habits, without being pestered by that blinking dot which is meant to remind us to go back to 'normal'. This would be semi-permanent biasing, as when we exposed Kodachrome 64 at EI 50, simply by setting the exposure meter to 50. What LATITUDE they gave us poor photogs in those days!

 

The old man from the Age of Optional Exposure

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Hi Tony

 

Aroused by your thread, I'm also curious to a make comparison between the 75 Lux and Cron. Knowing this topic has been discussed to death and members frequent here surely got the idea in their minds. Having said that, I would really like to see it. One of my friend just lend his Lux to me, so it make this comparison possible.

 

Both are great glasses. I used to think the Cron with all its superb credential, still cannot rival its Lux brother in the area of portrait. I was just stunned again by the image it draws. This time, an old man at backlight. We may have different preference for younger subject.

 

First Lux @1.4, then Cron @2.0, both from C1, no PP.

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Hi Matthew,

 

Thanks for the comparison shots. I can understand why some would prefer the Lux, and others the Cron. Like you, I believe that both are outstanding lenses, though I only own the Summicron. As I also own a Noctilux, so I tend to use that lens when I want to achieve that beautiful, distinctive Lux look.

 

Regards,

 

Tony C.

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What LATITUDE they gave us poor photogs in those days!

 

And what spectacular results that often gave the photographer who learned to exploit it.

 

I much prefer the right-to-the-point spectacular look of a richly exposed slide film over the greater and much flatter look of straight digital shot any day/

 

I think it is funny how much people cry about more dynamic range, it is not making their images look any better, if anything, they look drab and boring like those terrible HDR landscapes I see.

 

I try to use my M8 like I am shooting slide film.

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I much prefer the right-to-the-point spectacular look of a richly exposed slide film over the greater and much flatter look of straight digital shot any day/

 

I think it is funny how much people cry about more dynamic range, it is not making their images look any better, if anything, they look drab and boring like those terrible HDR landscapes I see.

 

Excellent ponts, both... and I agree wholeheartedly. Howeverbutt...

 

IF you have extra DR to begin with, it is a relatively easy thing to compress it with a curve to emulate something with less DR, like film. This why I keep preaching that learning PROPER digital workflow is so important. And that workflow is usually specific to the digital camera being used to generate the original file. Proper digital workflow begins with the in camera exposure settings, proceeds to the raw converter stage, then through the image editor (which is where the DR should be managed) then finally to the output adjustments.

 

Cheers,

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Guest guy_mancuso

These are things that specifically we will touch on in our workshop Jack. Now this image shown with the horse does have that heavy sparkle and yes some folks will like images like this but you can also have the control to bring it down a notch and this is where proper raw processing and technique come into play. Myself i tend to like a lot of punch like Kodachrome which even with the nice DR the M8 can handle it can also extend that punch throughout the whole tonal range. What we see sometimes is not taking advantage of the DR that the M8 can give you. One of the reason and probably the main reason I have been using LR lately on the outside images is the fill and recovery sliders to get detail in the shadows and also bring down or up the highlights but also to control the mid tones. LR just needs to get rid of the magenta cast , maybe 1.2 defaults will go that way. I love C1 and used it with my DMR but it leaves me short sometimes and use it more for portraits and also high ISO which seems to do better on the noise. This whole raw processing is a art within the art of photography.

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I think it is funny how much people cry about more dynamic range, it is not making their images look any better, if anything, they look drab and boring like those terrible HDR landscapes I see.

 

Hmm..so you've seen lots of prints by the many photographers who are asking for more dynamic range? You're very fortunate. That's thousands of photographers, I'd imagine. I haven't even seen work in its final print form from anyone on this forum and so I couldn't begin to comment on how it looks. You must get around a lot.

 

You also must have a very keen and accurate sense of when a picture is strong or weak because you've been quite liberal, on this forum and on others, in your criticism of other people's work, both in general and in specific. It must be quite a responsibility to be truly qualified to pronounce what work and ideas are good or bad, strong or weak or even "retarded" (your adjective from a recent post which I'm still puzzled by).

 

I've looked at the pictures on the Kodachrome project web site.

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Excellent ponts, both... and I agree wholeheartedly.

 

Cheers,

 

Hi Jack,

 

I certainly do not agree with Daniel's argument. If a photographer wants greater dynamic range from his or her equipment, I myself would never presume to tell him or her otherwise. Who am I to dictate what that person may want to create from his or her source materials? I would say that it is not my place to tell another person how his or her pictures should or should not look, unless I'm specifically asked.

 

Cheers,

 

Sean

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Hi Jack,

 

I certainly do not agree with Daniel's argument. If a photographer wants greater dynamic range from his or her equipment, I myself would never presume to tell him or her otherwise. Who am I to dictate what that person may want to create from his or her source materials? I would say that it is not my place to tell another person how his or her pictures should or should not look, unless I'm specifically asked.

 

Cheers,

 

Sean

 

Hey Sean:

 

While you and I agree on nearly everything, this is an issue that is a minor pet peeve of mine, so let me explain further...

 

My peeve here is photographers, specifically digital photographers, claiming that more DR in a camera automatically means a "better" file. We hear this a lot. IMO what counts is the final *image*. And to this point, I have seen too many HDR blends done with tone-mapper programs, and then too many wide DR images that lack impact. The tone mapping is particularly offensive as many have those telltale extreme blended halos surrounding all of the shadows and highlights -- it reminds me of the heavy-handed application of USM we saw when digital first got started and folks were still learning how to sharpen files with it. Yuck! (

)

 

From that point of view, I *much* prefer a "richly exposed" chrome that maybe even let the image extend beyond the capture range of the film itself; allowed a few of speculars to blow and some of the shadows to go full black. I'll draw the line at not liking a visible transition line from where a too-strong split ND filter was used with film, but hopefully you get the idea...

 

Finally, and in my humble opinion only, a bit of localised contrast makes an image have more impact, and film -- even high-latitude color negative film -- delivered this automatically. In contrast, any digital camera with over 8-stops of DR simply can't supply it and to recapture some of that impact, I feel it needs to be specifically added later in post.

 

So it's really an implied concept I'm agreeing with: that good FINAL images rule the day, regardless of what capture medium was used to create them.

 

Hope that better explains my position on this subject.

 

Cheers,

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Hi Jack,

 

"While you and I agree on nearly everything, this is an issue that is a minor pet peeve of mine, so let me explain further...

 

My peeve here is photographers, specifically digital photographers, claiming that more DR in a camera automatically means a "better" file."

 

I agree with that concern right off the bat. The two key words for me (the root of the problem, I think) are "automatically" and "better". There are no absolute rules about how a file should look and, as I discussed in the "Myths" article, there's been some wonderful photography made with inky black shadows and gloriously blown highlights.

 

"We hear this a lot. IMO what counts is the final *image*."

 

Right, and there are many way to skin a fish as well as many kinds of fish that one can skin.

 

"And to this point, I have too many HDR blends done with tone-mapper programs, and then too many wide DR images that lack impact."

 

I've seen some. It takes a lot of practice, as you know, to learn how to print well and even to realize how many different ways a good print can look.

 

"The tone mapping is particularly offensive as many have those telltale extreme blended halos surrounding all of the shadows and highlights -- it reminds me of the heavy-handed application of USM we saw when digital first got started and folks were still learning how to sharpen files with it. Yuck! ([]) "

 

Sure. I've sometimes seen that too. But that sort of printing isn't inherent, of course, in starting with a long-scale negative. It's just stuff that sometimes happens as people are learning how to print digitally. And, here, I'll extend the word "print" to include creating a final digital file for monitor display as well. It's especially hard for people who never made fine prints in the darkroom.

 

"maybe even let the image extend beyond the capture range of the film itself; allowed a few of speculars to blow and some of the shadows to go full black."

 

I emphatically agree there and stressed this in that "Myths" article. One of my examples was the juke box in a famous Robert Frank photograph.

 

"I'll draw the line at not liking a visible transition line from where a too-strong split ND filter was used with film, but hopefully you get the idea..."

 

I do indeed. But these are examples of where things (to my eye or yours) go wrong. They're not dogma of course.

 

"So it's really an implied concept I'm agreeing with: that good FINAL images rule the day, regardless of what capture medium was used to create them."

 

Sure. And my point, which you might agree with, is that skilled photographers and printers certainly can make excellent use of the information in a file with a long tonal scale and I can certainly see why so many, myself included, are in favor of seeing expanded dynamic range in digital cameras. What one then does with that source material is really an individual thing.

 

The danger, and here we agree, is indeed in those assumptions as to what is automatically considered "better". The danger is in letting the technical abilities of the medium dictate the picture, rather than the vice versa. I don't want to see the tail wag the dog either.

 

Best,

 

Sean

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