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Old Aug 12, 2006, 7:35 AM   #11
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According to Minolta scanner literature a 35mm negative equals about 14Mp (from memory,I threw the sales stuff away when I bought a lens)
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 8:04 AM   #12
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I've also read numerous articals that claim the Canon 1Ds Mark II rivels medium format film. The 1Ds is a 16.7 mp. With thetechnology advances in sensors and camerasjust in the last couple of years, some articals that you read that are over 6 months old are probably outdated and unrelible. I don't believe there is a digital that will match a large format film camera, at least right now, but just wait a year or so, they will get there.After all the Wright brothers took thier first flight only 100 years ago, and that flight was shorter than the wing span of a 747. I would say that technology has come a long way in a relitive short time too.
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 5:04 PM   #13
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This is both true and false at the same time.

A high MP digital camera like the Canon 1Ds Mark II, or the Kodak SLR/n (both 35mm Full Frame cameras) produce very smooth looking enlargements. I think it is this smooth look that most refer to when they say the cameras rival medium format (film) cameras.

The medium format film area has 3x and higher the image area of a 35mm frame of film. So for any given enlargement, the medium format frame requires a smaller enlargement factor than does the 35mm. This gives medium format a smoother look than 35mm, especially in big enlargements.

However, the Canon or the Kodak cannot match (yet) the captured detail of the medium format film cameras. I expect we will see this also fall within the next year or two.

Of course, the medium format digital backs also outshine their 35mm brethern.
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Old Aug 12, 2006, 7:31 PM   #14
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I saw a great series of tests a couple of years back and can't find them again. I don't know whether they were removed or my search techniques leave a lot to be desired. But they ran comparative tests the only way I think is reasonable. They kept the film completely within the chemical process and compared prints.

For resolution they concluded that ASA 100 consumer film like Kodak Gold was about equivalent to 6Mp in a good DSLR and that Fuji Provia was about equal to 11Mp. In some scenes they thought the dynamic range was a little better with film. They also thought the prints had a little better color depth from film in some cases. But I have no idea how good they really were in the digital darkroom.

I think most of us would hate to give up the advantages of the digital darkroom. To do a great job of converting film to digital you have to pay to have the negatives scanned on a drum scanner or buy a very expensive film scanner. For $600 you can get a decent Nikon film scanner, but you are forfeiting a little quality compared to what the film is capable of. You also enhance the grain in my experience. Even if you have the film professionally scanned or buy a professional level scanner some of the fun factor is gone. You can't just download your photos and start messing with them. I did my digital darkroom for years with a film scanner and it is a time consuming hassle.

There are people who prefer vinyl LPs to digital recording and there are people who prefer film to digital. I prefer the convenience of digital in both cases. I don't think digital is quite up to medium format yet and certainly not up to large format. But that is moot to me as I always used 35mm with film anyway.

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Old Aug 12, 2006, 8:16 PM   #15
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If you are viewing the image on your computer monitor YOU ARE VIEWING A DIGITAL IMAGE !

I have a 20x30 (analogue) chemical print made by Kodak of a shot I took with a (at the time) $59 Vivitar rangefinder camera which shows every leaf on every tree of the landscape.

Hi end prints from excellent negatives = top quality 'art'

Digital prints from consumer grade printers = junk

Kodacolor Gold 200 is the (rough) equivalent of 40 meg.

If you get your film printed at the local store you will get a lower quality mass produced digital print (from a Fuji Frontiere).

Good luck finding a local store which will print from a negative chemically.

Remember: both light and your eyes are ANALOGUE

Let the argument(s) commence

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Old Aug 13, 2006, 4:22 AM   #16
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Digital v film is a never ending debate (until you switch to digital) :?.

Some interesting links by technical gurus who are also keen photographers.

http://www.normankoren.com/Tutorials/MTF7.html

http://www.clarkvision.com/imagedetail/index.html

Basic summary though, and my experience with my Canon 20D, is that 6-10Mp cameras will generally give equal or better results (once you adapt to digital workflow) than 35mm film.

And not from my experience just hearsay...

Cameras like 5D, 1D, D2X will generally give equal or better results than 6x4.5 medium format.

The MF digital backs are encroaching on 5x4 territory.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/es...-testing.shtml


The whole issue of dynamic range being better with negative film is also a contested one, many people don't agree with that, but I can't dig up a link offhand, google will help.

A couple of additional points..

Firstly the film v digital comparisons are often done by professional photographers with many years of film experience in developing and printing their film, and they print digital with high-end printers and expensive software. So they are operating at close to the maximum possible quality obtainable from the different media. When I was using film I was printing at high street labs and getting perhaps 50% of the maximum possible quality from my film images. Using my laptop, Photoshop and a decent photo printer like the Epson R800 I can get perhaps 80-90% of the maximum possible quality from my digital images. I have no doubt that there are some expert film photographers out there who could get better quality prints from 35mm film than I do from my 20D, but the quality of what I'm doing now is massively improved compared to what I was able to do on film. I would claim that most amateur photographers would be in the same boat as me - it's much easier and cheaper to hone your "lightroom" skills than it was to become a "darkroom" expert.

Secondly ...





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Old Aug 13, 2006, 4:56 AM   #17
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Quote:
I saw a great series of tests a couple of years back and can't find them again. I don't know whether they were removed or my search techniques leave a lot to be desired. But they ran comparative tests the only way I think is reasonable. They kept the film completely within the chemical process and compared prints.
An interesting point, but of course many pros had switched to "hybrid" systems of drum-scanned film and digital prints long before the digital cameras were good enough.

They did this because it held a number of workflow advantages and they were convinced the quality was better.

Even Clyde Butcher (one of the USA's foremost landscape photographers does this for his "small" prints i.e. those up to poster size) he works exclusively with large format film as his medium of capture.

Certainly on a recent course I did which was mixed 35mm and DSLR the quality of the prints coming from the digital group was much higher than that from the relatively inexperienced users of traditional enlargers.

The lecturer (a moderately well known fine art photographer) who has 20 years experience in the darkroom is able to reverse that however. His traditional prints are better than his digital prints, but he is very honest about saying he is a novice at printing digitally and an expert using an enlarger. He was very impressed with the quality of print that I was producing however and stated that it was every bit as good as he would expect from 35mm film.
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Old Aug 13, 2006, 6:13 AM   #18
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Very well put Peripatetic,

you know there were a lot of folk afraid to get behind the wheel of that new fangled automobile, the dang thing was scaring the horses.
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Old Aug 13, 2006, 9:17 AM   #19
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my primary camera is now a KM 7D

i am achieving satisfactory results and making some money (part time amateur)

i would still prefer film, but it is no longer printed properly locally



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Old Aug 13, 2006, 9:53 AM   #20
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"If you are viewing the image on your computer monitor YOR{sic} ARE VIEWING A DIGITAL IMAGE !"

Not entirely true. There is a difference between any media that goes through an analog to digital conversion versus media that was digital from its genesis. That's like saying the music on a CD is analog because you are hearing it through a conventional audio system, which requires that the digital music on the CD be re-encoded to analog. The limitations of the 16-bit information on the CD are still there.

The same thing is true with any media in a digital vs analog discussion. Some people notice the differences - whether sonically or visually - more than others, and eventually the digital format evolves to the point where all the "gaps" are filled in beyond human perception. I gather from this thread that that has not yet happened in photography.
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