It seems common these days that medium format landscape photographers do focus stacking to overcome depth of field problems. With the D800 it starts to become popular with DSLRs too. I prefer solving the problem with tilts when possible (the one-shot image is more worth to me), but it would not be wrong to have stacking in the arsenal.
I've had good results with stacking in the past, but it has been on quite easy scenes that could be solved with tilt too. Now when I have a tech camera I don't need to stack in those cases. So I made this forest scene for a test, those are often difficult to solve with tilt. The attached example is a 8 image stack of 90mm f/16 on a 33 megapixel back. I was careful when doing the stack so there is some DOF overlap between all images.
As usual I want everything to be perfect (not healthy!), but I noted that there is ghosting issues when something has moved slightly and blur around foreground objects as shown in the attached crops. ZereneStacker has been used. I have a very low tolerance on composite image artifacts, so I find this result a bit disappointing.
I wonder what expectations one should have on stacking results (is it typical to have some artifacts left that can be found by expert eyes when nosing the print, or can they be made 100% artifact free?), and how much manual retouching that is typically required etc, and what the best software for landscape work is. Perhaps one must avoid situations when ghosting issues could occur (slowly moving water with stuff floating around in it, branches moving in the wind etc)? The blur around foreground subjects is not ghosting though, but seems to be that the stacker fails to compensate for the blur widening of the foreground subjects which occurs when the background is in focus.
Any feedback appreciated.