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Thread: Aperture and size matters

  1. #11
    Martin Aislabie's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Weight is going to be you biggest problem.

    20~30 pounds sound light for an LF kit - even a 5x4 - mine is 40+ excluding the tripod.

    There is no point having a huge camera if you can only carry the thing 100 yards from the car, and despite the joke, there are plenty of things worth photographing much further from the car than that.

    As for huge prints - the most pragmatic way of producing them would probably be to have your negative high-res scanned and commercially machine printed, in multiple sections if required.

    As others have suggested, borrow your friends 5x4 kit and take it for decent walk - or offer to carry it for his on his next photo outing - he will be delighted.

    Have fun

    Martin

  2. #12
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Ditto to Martin's post. But if you're just going to have something professionally drum-scanned then competently inkjet output, there's isn't going to be a significant qualitative difference between a 4x5 original and 8x10. The smaller of the two format might even give you better odds. Yeah, if you're going to optically print them with serious lab gear (and I mean serious), the 8x10 wins hands down. But not many people have that level of commitment. Then in terms of field logistics, film holders themselves add quite a bit of weight. If you become a good "sniper" and take only a couple key shots an outing, you don't need many holders; but during the learning curve it can be a different story. And ultralight cameras and light tripods are not prone to give you the best results in wind and weather. You'd better double or even triple your carry weight target if you're taking this seriously. And even wandering a couple hundred yards from a paved mtn road can get you hurt, or your gear smashed, if you're not accustomed to the load on steep or uneven ground.

  3. #13
    fishbulb's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by jesse1996 View Post
    Secondly. I though i had aperture down for a bit, until i started going into LF. I've heard of the F64 group, and i hear many people saying that F64 will give me the sharpest print i could ever hope for, while others say that diffraction would go against the image and cause some softer images vs. shooting wide open to get sharp photos. someone with some experience under their belt or a math degree please set this straight for me! I want my photos to look the best as possible. On my 35mm and medium format experiences sometimes closing the aperture down a bit got better results, however their almost seems to be a different playing field in terms of x5 and bigger.
    f/64 is for old lenses where optics are so poor, peak performance really is at f/64, even with the diffraction. f/64 is also for people who don't/can't use movements and need everything sharp front to back. But if you know your Scheimpflug principle, you can shoot at f/16 of f/22 and have front to back sharpness just fine, without the massive resolution-reducing diffraction of f/64. Most lenses designed in the last 30 years are optimized for peak resolution at f/16-f/22 anyway, so stopping down further reduces total resolution.

    For example, with a good drum scanner, 8x10 at f/16 you might get 600mp, at f/32 you might get 250mp, and f/64 you might get 70mp. This has been proven over and over again in various large format tests, and I've confirmed it myself using FP4 on 4x5 and my Howtek drum scanner. Unless you plan on using vintage lenses, you should use movements, modern lenses, and a modest aperture to maximize resolution (along with all the other factors like a good tripod, fine-grained film, managing vibrations, watching the wind, etc.)
    -Adam

  4. #14

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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by fishbulb View Post
    f/64 is for old lenses where optics are so poor, peak performance really is at f/64, even with the diffraction. f/64 is also for people who don't/can't use movements and need everything sharp front to back. But if you know your Scheimpflug principle, you can shoot at f/16 of f/22 and have front to back sharpness just fine, without the massive resolution-reducing diffraction of f/64. Most lenses designed in the last 30 years are optimized for peak resolution at f/16-f/22 anyway, so stopping down further reduces total resolution.
    Hmm. The diffraction limit at f/64 is ~ 23 lp/mm. Plenty good enough for contact printing. Plenty good enough for 2x enlargements. Which format should we use and how large should we print?

  5. #15
    fishbulb's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
    Hmm. The diffraction limit at f/64 is ~ 23 lp/mm. Plenty good enough for contact printing. Plenty good enough for 2x enlargements. Which format should we use and how large should we print?
    In this context, the original poster is talking about wall size prints and maximizing resolution of said prints, not contact prints and 2x enlargements.
    -Adam

  6. #16

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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    Quote Originally Posted by fishbulb View Post
    In this context, the original poster is talking about wall size prints and maximizing resolution of said prints, not contact prints and 2x enlargements.
    He did ramble on about making wall-sized negatives.

  7. #17
    jesse1996's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture and size matters

    i do ramble often.... gotta give it to dan there

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