Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: PODAS Master Class in Ireland  (Read 814 times)


  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 214
PODAS Master Class in Ireland
« on: June 27, 2011, 03:59:54 PM »

I had a look a the Podas blog and found some interesting images shown there:

Also some interesting facts took my attention: I noticed that there were quite some tech cameras brought by the participants to this Master Class, among them, according to the pics I saw at least 3 or 4 Alpa cameras (STC and Max).

I would be interested to get some feedback, from those having worked with their tech cameras, in opposition to those having used a MF camera. What are the arguments for them to use this type of tech camera, what are the results in terms of image quality, how was the experience with focusing and get precise, on-the-point focus, etc ...?

I know that this will lead to a lens discussion, among other issues, but I find it interesting to get some first-hand feedback, from the field, there where it matters.

I hope there are some attendees here to jump in and open this discussion.


Thierry Hagenauer

[email protected]


  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 826
Re: PODAS Master Class in Ireland
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 11:14:30 PM »


I was not in Ireland, but I was at the recent PODAS in Death Valley (April).  This wasn’t a master class, so there was significantly less existing medium format experience.  However, two of us had technical cameras and both were Alpa STC’s.  Kevin also brought a third Alpa STC, but I think it was rarely, if ever used by anyone.  I had just purchased mine but did not have a digital back, so I was in the market for one, and hence my decision to attend PODAS.  I took a big leap from a dslr to a technical camera.

Since I never shot a Phase camera, I shot the 645DF the first day.  After that I used my Alpa for the remainder of the trip.  I will say the results I got from the DF camera were better than I expected.  I focused manually but used the focus indicators to assist (arrows indicate inside or outside the focus point).  After switching to the Alpa, I used focus bracketing almost all the time because my rookie skills were quite green (and still are).  I like the DF for what it is.  But my main reasons for going with a technical camera, and specifically the Alpa were 1) the shooting style, and 2) the light weight.  I plan to backpack, trek and canoe with this.

I think my results were better with the Alpa.  Was that because of the camera or my dedication?  I really don’t know.  Several other participants commented how my images seemed sharper with more detail.  But if that was the case, I think it is because focusing on a technical camera is just a more precise process.  It is easier to get very close to correct focus with an autofocus camera.  But I maintain it is easier to get precise focus with a technical camera like an Alpa with HPF rings or an Arca simply because of the longer throw from close focus to infinity.  I had two lenses with me:  43xl and the HR100.  I have since added an SK150.

For me the bottom line is that it is so much more enjoyable using a technical camera.  Funny that most would consider not having a light meter, autofocus, or even a viewfinder would think it limiting or confining.  But I find it quite liberating.  And yes, I will admit I think there is something romantic about using a technical camera.  I'm not full-time pro, so for me it is all about the process.

Pages: [1]   Go Up