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Author Topic: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?  (Read 6545 times)

NancyP

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #20 on: September 21, 2015, 12:04:46 pm »

If you aren't shooting high-frame rate, large buffer B and W, or at ISO 3200 or above, Sigma Merrills are splendid.
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akclimber

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2015, 03:10:48 pm »

I really enjoy the B&W results I attain from my old D800e.  There's something special about them, whether it's just the dynamic range or the color response or a combination of factors, I don't know.  But converting to B&W with either Google/Nik software or OnOne Perfect Effects software gives me terrific results that I (and others - even my wife) can distinguish from other cameras I own, particularly my Canon 5D2 and 5D3.  I also use a D810 and Sony A7II and A7R2 but I really haven't pitted the D800e against them yet when it comes to B&W.  Even if they're as capable as (or better than) the D800e for B&W, a low priced, used D800e would rock as a dedicated B&W cam if one already has appropriate lenses.

As for the Sigma Merrills and B&W, I rented a DP2 with which to play and agree that it produces very, very nice B&W images.  A friend here in Juneau who is a full time award winning pro photog and Nikon devotee keeps a DP2 around just for B&W work.

Cheers!
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synn

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #22 on: September 23, 2015, 04:21:38 am »

I consider my D800 pretty meh in terms of color output, but it does make a wonderful B&W camera. The tonality is quite creamy and Silver Effex Pro, followed by tweaks in PS gives me images I am very happy with.







I echo the sentiments of some folks above. I personally see no need for a monochrome camera, when oen has so many more creative options in post with a color camera. The retro cool of a Leica Monochrome makes for a great hipster accessory, but you're basically boxing yourself into a corner with a lot less creative options with a tool like that.
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Hulyss

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #23 on: September 23, 2015, 07:39:15 am »

One wonders why there has not been any effort so far by one of the mayor players to release a B&W digital camera that would offer better dynamic range, noise performance and overall image quality compared to converting current color images to B&W? Yes, there are two options, either a Phase One back or Leica M (Monochrome), both of with are out of reach for the vast majority of photographers.

Will Sony release an A7M (Monochrome) ILC being the leader in sensor manufacturing? Sony surely could pull this one off and provide a dedicated B&W camera in the range of $1500-$2500.

But till then what to buy to convert color to BW images? I assume great dynamic range and the ability to pull shadow detail are worth having when converting?
What to buy in the range up to $1000 and what up to $2000? Personally i see the Sony RX100 IV a viable option (great to pull shadow detail) in the lower price tier.
Looking forward to reading your comments.  (I cross-posted it in the B&W section but i assume more 'gear heads' here)

Hello,

I went with a lot of different cameras but about B&W and B&W field shooting experience, nothing came close yet to the DP Merrill (for me). So yes, it is not full frame, there is no OVF or EVF but... it work. The DR is TREMENDOUS in B&W.

I'm doing reportage with it. It is very discrete, solid, work from ISO 100 to 3200 in B&W with STUNNING IQ, even by today standard and especially if the goal is printing.
There is a also the little ricoh GR.

Some basic examples: Right click to show bigger.







Hope this help :)
« Last Edit: September 23, 2015, 07:43:42 am by Hulyss »
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BrianVS

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #24 on: September 23, 2015, 09:33:26 am »

I was looking for practical advise/reports from BW digital shooters that do NOT use the Leica M.

Look at a used Leica M8.

Use a Yellow filter when you know in advance that you will convert to Monochrome.

I have the M Monochrom- but expended some effort on Monochrome conversions from the M8 and M9 to see how close they could come.

https://www.leicaplace.com/threads/1145/page-2

M1012676_small by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr

https://www.flickr.com/photos/90768661@N02/albums/72157649097415584

The M8 also makes for some very interesting color IR images.

I1015872 by fiftyonepointsix, on Flickr
« Last Edit: September 23, 2015, 09:36:22 am by BrianVS »
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BradSmith

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #25 on: September 23, 2015, 02:03:43 pm »

From the original post
.......But till then what to buy to convert color to BW images?..........

Don't buy anything.  Use what you have and convert to B&W.
Brad
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MarkL

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #26 on: September 23, 2015, 05:25:49 pm »

Hello,

I went with a lot of different cameras but about B&W and B&W field shooting experience, nothing came close yet to the DP Merrill (for me). So yes, it is not full frame, there is no OVF or EVF but... it work. The DR is TREMENDOUS in B&W.

As far as I have read this has always been a limitation for these cameras, why is it so much better in b&w?
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dwswager

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #27 on: September 23, 2015, 07:23:19 pm »

One wonders why there has not been any effort so far by one of the mayor players to release a B&W digital camera that would offer better dynamic range, noise performance and overall image quality compared to converting current color images to B&W? Yes, there are two options, either a Phase One back or Leica M (Monochrome), both of with are out of reach for the vast majority of photographers.


I would like to see X-Rite try a B&W Profile using the ColorChecker Passport or with some other new target.  Not sure if it would even be possible.
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graeme

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #28 on: September 23, 2015, 08:29:42 pm »

From the original post
Don't buy anything.  Use what you have and convert to B&W.
Brad
Yes, stop buying gear & take some photo's.
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Hulyss

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #29 on: September 24, 2015, 08:29:54 am »

As far as I have read this has always been a limitation for these cameras, why is it so much better in b&w?

Absolutely not. The Dr on Merrill is kind of awesome especially with fill light. In colour it can result in ugly HDR but in B&W it is a miracle tool. Here are one example, not an extreme one, per say :

ISO400 over exposed by 3 stops (even a bit more than 3 stops) : Right click/show image.

General view :



Crop :



Crop after rescue :



 
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Michael N. Meyer

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #30 on: September 24, 2015, 10:23:53 pm »

Echoing Armand: I've found that the files from my Fuji X-Pro1 cameras convert very well to black and white. I used to love 35mm HP5 pushed to 800 and souped in X-Tol and it's fairly easy to get a similar look out of the Fuji files through Lightroom with minimal fuss. And, the files look good clean, too.

bokehcambodia

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Re: Which camera to choose for B&W digital?
« Reply #31 on: September 27, 2015, 08:23:09 am »

Thanks for your replies. It seems to really come down to the ergonomics/lens choice here, and the Sigma DP Merrill or Sony A7R/S series will be it for me.
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