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Thread: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

  1. #1
    Geos
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    1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    I spent about an hour at FotoCare, in NYC, about a week ago and had a chance to check out some images from the subject cameras/backs. I thought Id share some biased thoughts on an unscientific comparison. All images were compared on screen at 50% and 100% enlargement. I know very little else, about what optics, ISO, sharpening, etc., were used.

    First, I was very impressed by how well the Canon held its own against the competitors. One could certainly make some large prints with this camera and be very happy. In comparing the 1DS III with the 22 MP back; the MF beat it by so little, that I thought the cost differential would not make it worth the additional expense of MF digital. Therefore, if one were considering a 22MP MF camera, Id recommend the Canon and some of their nice glass instead.

    What one got with 33MP was micro fine detail that was simply not evident with the Canon, and barely (just barely, if at all) visible with the 22MPix back. The sales person indicated that it gave somewhere between 5x7 and 8x10 sheet film quality (my guess being compared to samples scanned on a Kodak/Creo flatbed they are a dealer, but probably around 4x5 drum scanned quality).

    The 39MP Hasselblad showed just a small improvement over the 33MP back, but an improvement none-the-less. Since the cost differential between a 39MP Hasselblad and a 33MP Leaf system is little, Id probably go with the blad.

    To summarize, I noticed very little difference (dynamic range, smoothness, color, etc.) between the images with the exception of resolution. If/when I make a move to MF digital (which must include view camera capability), Ill ignore the low end 16/22MP cameras/backs in lieu of a high end 35mm DSLR, for a significant cost savings. If I were to go to the higher resolving MF digital cameras, Id have to think long and hard about the cost, which would be in the neighborhood of $45,000 (2008 dollars) for a system with lenses (not including view camera and digital lenses for it). This simply does not seem reasonable unless one is make money with such a system.

  2. #2

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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    I will consider replacing 4x5 film when I can buy a 40 MP+ back for less than $5000.

    I doubt that will happen any time soon.

  3. #3

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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Ron, there's a 135mp PhaseOne on "that" website with a buy it now of $5750. Granted it's a scan back and not appropriate for some subjects, but not bad for teh money.


    erie

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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Quote Originally Posted by George Stewart View Post
    The sales person indicated that it gave somewhere between 5x7 and 8x10 sheet film quality (my guess being compared to samples scanned on a Kodak/Creo flatbed – they are a dealer, but probably around 4x5 drum scanned quality).
    somehow, I doubt that. 33mp will be around 6600x5000 pixels, I can get nice detail from a 4x5 scanned at higher resolution than that, dry scanned on a consumer flat bed. Drum scan would be even more detail, I believe my 4x5 drum scans were 12,000px wide (maybe 16,000?), and quite sharp. I wouldn't pay attention to anything the sales person says, unless it's about the specifications (numbers and figures) of the units.
    Daniel Buck - 3d VFX artist
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  5. #5
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Daniel, pixel count does not equate to resolution.

    The best head to head comparison of the P45 and drum scanned 4x5 that I know of was done by Charles Cramer. See:

    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/Cramer.shtml

    To me it shows somewhat of a parity between the P45 and drum scanned 4x5, but that parity would certainly not hold for 8x10.
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    at age 67
    "The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep"

  6. #6

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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Quote Originally Posted by erie patsellis View Post
    Ron, there's a 135mp PhaseOne on "that" website with a buy it now of $5750. Granted it's a scan back and not appropriate for some subjects, but not bad for teh money.


    erie
    Thanks for the tip. I often need fairly short shutter speeds, and am perfectly happy with film, except for my need for scanning.

  7. #7

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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    I used to think the same thing, but one of my commercial clients really wanted me to go digital, I found an older PhaseOne StudioKit back for well under $1k and was shocked, quite frankly, at how good the image quality is. Without upsampling or any post production, images straight out are good for full page ads. A little tweaking and you'd be amazed how good a 9mp scanback image looks.


    erie

  8. #8
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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk Gittings View Post
    Daniel, pixel count does not equate to resolution.

    The best head to head comparison of the P45 and drum scanned 4x5 that I know of was done by Charles Cramer. See:

    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/Cramer.shtml

    To me it shows somewhat of a parity between the P45 and drum scanned 4x5, but that parity would certainly not hold for 8x10.
    Yep, I know that. My drum scans were quite sharp at 12,000px wide, so how could a digital capture that is limited to 6,500px wide (at it's native resolution, with out up-sizing, which doesn't bring more detail) show more detail than the 12,000px wide scan (which holds good detail)? If the 12,000px scan was soft, then yes. But from what I remember, it was sharp to the grain.

    However I forgot to mention, I'm talking about B&W, I don't know how color and B&W film stand against each other when scanning. I've never really scanned color before.

    But in the case of that color comparison link you posted, that's a 39mp back instead of a 33mp back (though I'm not sure that it matters, they are close enough) and it's against a 4x5, not a 5x7/8x10 that was mentioned in the original sales man's quote. In that comparison, I don't think I would be able to say that the 39mp back out-resolved the scanned 4x5, nor does it look better. The first set of images look pretty close, but the rest of them clearly go to the film, in my opinion. They might be close enough to be called 'even' in loose terms I would think though. However, again that's a 4x5 :-) And in terms of up-resing for large prints, I much prefer the "over scanned" negative than the "up-rezed" digital capture, neither will be sharp, but in my opinion the film scan looks better. it looks more natural, with no artifacts or digital look to it, just grain (film grain looks nice to me, not digital noise!)

    I don't print large so I haven't done a whole lot of testing, but I did do my own comparisons when I was asked to look into the possibility of printing some very large files. I much prefered the film scans. (and that was not with a fancy scanner). And it prompted me to pick up an 8x10 camera (that was partially the reason anyway) so that I could scan my own negatives with my inexpensive flat bed, and get results that would require stitching from a digital capture. I don't think it can be said that the 5x7 and 8x10 negatives are out-resolved by the 33mp sensor, especially when the 4x5 negatives seem to be close enough to be called 'even', or there abouts.
    Daniel Buck - 3d VFX artist
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  9. #9
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Isn't this basically what I said? Aren't we in fundamental agreement?
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    at age 67
    "The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep"

  10. #10
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    Re: 1DS III vs. Leaf 22 & 33MP Backs, vs. Hasselblad 39MP

    Correct. I was just explaining a bit more :-) Sorry, I get wordy sometimes.
    Daniel Buck - 3d VFX artist
    3d work: DanielBuck.net
    photography: 404Photography.net - BuckshotsBlog.com

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