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Old Feb 11, 2004, 11:43 AM   #11
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Actually the "Future of Flight" article in NG's December issue was shot completely digital with a Nikon D2H.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 2:15 PM   #12
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Actually the "Future of Flight" article in NG's December issue was shot completely digital with a Nikon D2H.
You're right. I read that article, too. My brain is rotting.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 2:22 PM   #13
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No, NG photographers still use analog. There has only been an article about a fighter plane, that was shot digitally as an exception, because the photographer couldnt change film in flight.[/quote]

NG photographers have used digital on other articles as well. Off the top of my head I know Jim Branderburg's feature on the Boundry Waters of Minnesota was shot totally in digital. I'm sure there are others too. . .
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 2:52 PM   #14
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You have a lot of theory about pro films and multi-megabuck digital systems. Reducing it to the kind of digital she might get compared to the film quality she is likely getting, and keeping the film completely within the photographic process - comparing only the finished prints:

A decent 5Mp consumer digital camera will give a little more resolution than ASA400 film and a little less resolution than good consumer ASA100. You won’t see the difference in 4 X 6 images or probably even 8 X 10 even though the grain of the 400 ASA film starts to show a little.

The film has more dynamic range than a non-DSLR camera. After you look at a few photos online you can usually spot the shots taken with a DSLR compared to a “prosumer” digital. The DSLR shots have both the highlights well exposed and deep shadow detail – something you can’t do with a prosumer. I always shoot with minimum contrast to get the maximum dynamic range my cameras are capable of and try to bring it up in Photoshop. But the best you can do doesn’t compare to a good DSLR – or film – shot. Again you probably wouldn’t notice that in 4 X 6 prints but it becomes apparent in larger prints.

If she is considering DSLR she won’t see a much if any difference.

I have talked several friends out of switching to digital cameras. They like getting the pictures back and passing them around. I tell them to just get a picture CD with the processing. Photo CDs are better than picture CDs, but the picture CDs are cheap and more than sufficient for e-mail and posting.

I think most people end up with a lot more hard copy pictures with a film camera than they do with digital. And many people get a lot of pleasure from pictures they can hold. You get a few bad shots, but with the dynamic range of consumer film and enhancement in the photo processing machines most film shots are fine. It costs the same per shot to develop and print film as to print digital images. If you figure 30c per bad picture counting film and developing, you can get a lot of bad shots for the price of a digital camera.

Digital shots are ephemeral. I archive my keeper shots to 2 CDs, and store them in separate places in the dark after carefully checking that the burn was good. I suspect that many people are going to find at some future date that they have no photographic memories of their past if they are not very careful about guarding their digital images. I have 30 year old negatives that still scan fine in my film scanner and slides that old that do fine with a little work.

You get better pictures with more dynamic range with a good SLR film camera than you do with a small CCD prosumer digital IMO. I think she is right that she can see the difference – mostly in dynamic range. I can sure tell the difference between prosumer and DSLR shots online. If she is considering DSLR and has a good system for archiving her digital shots she won’t see any difference unless she is using something like Provia film, and even then not much. DSLR can be pricey unless she already has lenses she can use. If she is a dedicated enough photographer that she uses a SLR and can see the difference I wouldn’t push her into a digital unless she is willing to go with a DSLR. Consider a film scanner to digitize the negatives or slides.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 3:32 PM   #15
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I agree with Slipe about going only with a D-SLR for serious lovers of photography. I also agree with him about the difference in the number of actual prints that show up in film versus digital. To match both the quality and the paper output of film, a person can't get around having to spend a bunch of money. You definitely get what you pay for in both camera and printer.

The one thing I've found when digitizing film is that the quality just doesn't seem to match what I would have had if I'd shot digitally to begin with. Of course, I didn't spend big bucks on my film scanner, so maybe there's where the fault lies.

The biggest pro in my mind to working digitally is the digital darkroom. Anyone who's worked both ways knows what I'm talking about. Smell, claustrophobia, and tedium are several qualities I happily gave up.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 4:50 PM   #16
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The one thing I've found when digitizing film is that the quality just doesn't seem to match what I would have had if I'd shot digitally to begin with. Of course, I didn't spend big bucks on my film scanner, so maybe there's where the fault lies.
If you are going to get a quality 4000 PPI film scanner with good dynamic range, digital ice and high speed she might as well just go to DSLR, especially if she already has compatible lenses. >$300 film scanners tend to be slow enough to make converting large numbers of negatives a chore. No mater how much you brush and blow dust seems to find its way onto the film, and without digital ice it is a nuisance to clone it out. And inexpensive scanners just don’t give the quality of a good digital camera as pointed out. Quality scanners will give better dynamic range from film than you get with a prosumer digital though.

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The biggest pro in my mind to working digitally is the digital darkroom. Anyone who's worked both ways knows what I'm talking about. Smell, claustrophobia, and tedium are several qualities I happily gave up.
I converted my darkroom to a nice big laundry room. I’ve been using Photoshop for about 10 years and just converted selected film to digital with a film scanner. Digital cameras are so much more convenient in that respect.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 6:53 PM   #17
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I converted my darkroom to a nice big laundry room.
Me too.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 6:56 PM   #18
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When talking about the comparrisons between the two formats I was talking up to 10 by 8 prints. I entered a photographic competition last year with photos printed at this size taken with my Canon G3. Both formats were in this competition against each other. I won quite a few sections. After this people came up to me and asked what Film I had used for the rich colors. I had edited slightly. This is why I feel I am right in this, most people could not pick it.
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Old Feb 11, 2004, 7:30 PM   #19
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Don't you miss the wonderfull smell of Sodium Thiosulfate(hypo) and Glacial Acetic Acid(stop bath) now?
Ummmmm, they smell like victory, oh wait thats jellied petrol.

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I converted my darkroom to a nice big laundry room.
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Old Feb 12, 2004, 6:05 AM   #20
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Quote:
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Don't you miss the wonderfull smell of Sodium Thiosulfate(hypo) and Glacial Acetic Acid(stop bath) now?
Ummmmm, they smell like victory, oh wait thats jellied petrol.
I'll answer for Slipe as well as myself: NO.
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