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Digital Medium Format


I am thinking of adding some digital medium format equipment to my existing arsenal of Canon DSLRs and Canon lenses. Just want to run the idea by you guys and get your views.

I basically shoot nature and am eying the Hasselblad H3DII 50 mp and the Phase One with the P65+ back (will have to choose one of them) for landscape work.

I am looking for feedback on these lines:

1. Is it worth it?
2. If yes, which one do you suggest and why?
3. If no, why (except for the price)?
4. When does one think of stepping up to a medium DSLR?

Please help me brain storm this nagging desire.


by Meethil Momaya at 2009-03-19 20:37:45 UTC Mumbai , India | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Run a simple test. Shoot the same subject, same lighting, as close to the same ISO and as close to the same lenses, with the MFDB you’re considering, and one of the big chip DSLRs. Process the files so they look as good as they can, and then look at them… look at detail in the shadows, color rendition, ultimate resolution, everything.

Now, there’s the other part of the puzzle- which machine, which box, do you prefer to run? If you like short depth of field, for example, or view camera movements, you’re going to like the MF. If you like shooting fast from the hip, at the highest ISO (what, 6400+ now?) you want a DSLR.

Nothing, absolutely nothing can replace simply shooting with the camera, looking at the files and deciding for yourself. Renting the things, either of them, is by far the best route, and usually at least half a rental fee can be deducted from the purchase… it’s far too much money, either way, to go into it without having your hands on the thing and seeing the results.

by [former member] | 19 Mar 2009 20:03 (ed. Mar 19 2009) | | Report spam→
Thanks Ted,
Got that one noted down. “Check by trying it out”.

by Meethil Momaya | 19 Mar 2009 21:03 | Mumbai, India | | Report spam→
Hmmm…Unless you are a studio photog into advertising and such… what can possibly wrong with the Eos1Ds Mark 3? With the money you save you can buy a “kick ass” audio system and a new car (better to attract hot babes with). Back in pre-digi days the Hasselblad would have made more sense but for the work you do it might not. Wish we all had this dilemma. :):):)

by Gregory Sharko | 20 Mar 2009 01:03 (ed. Mar 20 2009) | Brooklyn, New York, United States | | Report spam→
LOL I googled this post I did a while back here and found this:
This was a beauty of a discussion that like most threads of this sort disintegrated into a flat out brawl. In between all the punches are some interesting points. Read about it here."


Obviously the poster does not understand the complex love and respect that exists here on Lightstalkers… :) (crap, now that I’m re-reading it, it looks like some of the best comments and contributions have been deleted. dammit.)

Anyway, the point of my original post was to show what the file quality differences are between various digital products, and how that related to film (MOSTLY so someone shooting film could “translate”) Maybe it will help…

by [former member] | 20 Mar 2009 10:03 | | Report spam→
Dear Gregory,

Point taken. One of the main differences between the Mark 3 and a MFD is the sensor size. A larger sensor helps in getting more details and i’ve heard MFD sensors have a better dynamic range. Otherwise, i will be happier with a car and a new audio system :)

Thanks for your inputs, i really appreciate it.

by Meethil Momaya | 20 Mar 2009 10:03 | Mumbai, India | | Report spam→
You may find people with more experience with medium format digital over at http://luminous-landscape.com/.


by Raoul Wegat | 20 Mar 2009 10:03 (ed. Mar 20 2009) | Melbourne, Australia | | Report spam→
Been there, seen that.

Michael Reichmann (of luminous-landscape.com) seems a but too goo-goo-ga-ga over Phase One. so i decided to ignore his review of P65+; a link to which i found on the Phase One website.
More over the photographs he shows along with the review do not shout out Medium format, i understand they are low resolution jpgs, but they still could do better.


I found this fellow, link below, to be a more reliable source – His gallery at pbase also shows pics from both a nikon d2x and a hasselblad h3dII and on careful analysis one can play a game at distinguishing the images from each camera.


by Meethil Momaya | 20 Mar 2009 12:03 | Mumbai, India | | Report spam→

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Meethil Momaya, Wildlife Photographer Meethil Momaya
Wildlife Photographer
(ARPS, Nature)
Mumbai , India
Gregory Sharko, photographer Gregory Sharko
Brooklyn, New York , United States ( JFK )
Raoul Wegat, Photographer Raoul Wegat
Melbourne , Australia ( MEL )


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