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Author Topic: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test  (Read 1813 times)

stevenfr

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    • Steven Friedman Landscape Photography

Last week Tim Wolcott and I had an opportunity to test the Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype. We were shooting with it in the Smoky Mountains for a couple of hours.

I wanted to provide to you a list of features and enhancements to the IQ4 150 back that I felt were interesting to my landscape photography.

1. Of course the extra resolution from 100 to 150 megapixels is a big improvement. For my work delivering fine art prints to a gallery is the end result. The extra resolution will be very beneficial to delivering extra detail to the larger prints, and the wall size murals.

2. I conducted a ISO sweep with the camera from 50 to 3200 ISO. Given that the camera is a prototype and the final firmware was not installed in the camera, I won’t get into to many specifics. When I looked at the images, I was very excited to see very little degradation in the file at the higher ISO’s. For my work a lot of my images are images of trees, moving leaves is a constant issue. The improvements in the higher ISO would allow me to spend less time waiting for leaves to stop moving. Longer exposures in a forest are common. Its a trade off between depth of field and shorter exposure times to get the leaves sharp. Now with the better ISO performance it will allow me to still maximize the depth of field with shorter exposures.

3. The faster write times with the XQD cards and the faster processors in the camera enable me to shoot images quicker. This is key when shooting stitched panoramic images. The shorter write times should result in getting stitched images as quick as possible, without the wait times between exposures. On a recent shoot, I spent over two hours waiting for the leaves to stop moving. I believe with a higher ISO and the quicker write times, I would of been able to get the images quicker, which would allow me to move onto my next location.

4. Dark Frame reduction. I was told by a Phase One representative that the dark frame will be reduced to a minimal amount of time. As an example in the past I would do a 4 second exposure with 6 image captures as a stitched panorama. In between exposures, I would have to wait the entire 4 second for the dark frame to finish. I am now told the dark frame will be almost instantaneous on the shorter exposures. Thus saving me 24 second over the entire time to capture the 6 images. Once I get my 150 back this will be something I will test.

5. Live View is now cleaner and much faster. Zooming into the images and moving around the image to check sharpness has no lag. There also an ability to pinch-to-zoom, and left and right gestures to access the camera settings. Its all very intuative. Also, the ability to see a focus mask is now available in the live view of the image before capture.

6. Live Histogram on the Raw file is really exciting. In the past you would have to shoot the image to evaluate your histogram. Now it will be possible to do it live using the exposure simulation, which allows one to see the histogram change as you change the exposure. As well, there is an ability to see a live clipping by channel. Its a graphical view by channel, very cool.

7. Dual card storage (XQD and SD) was also a nice feature. The Phase One representative also mentioned that the wireless writing of images was a possibility. I asked if there was an ability to wirelessly write to a hard drive. The Phase One representative thought it would be possible, but would need to confirm.

8. Capture One Inside the camera. There were a few presets that were available in the camera. I experimented with the B&W setting. When I looked at the images with the preset in Capture One the image was tagged with the B&W settings. I think this will be useful if you have a preset you like, and want to see it in the camera when you are shooting, and not have to wait for the images to be downloaded.

I do feel that the extra resolution is welcome, but to me the features mentioned above are the real story with the new back. I believe these features will make image capture easier, and quicker with increased accuracy.

I have attached three images I processed through Capture One.

Steven Friedman
http://Http://www.friedmanphoto.com
« Last Edit: November 06, 2018, 08:05:13 PM by stevenfr »
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cgarnerhome

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2018, 09:46:25 AM »

Thanks Steven for taking the time to write this up.  The dark frame reduction feature is a big deal for me.  I often shoot long exposures - 2 to 30 seconds and sometimes up to 5 minutes.  Currently, the dark frame subtraction severely limits my shooting window.  This will be significant for me.  Additionally, the improved live view and histogram evaluation will be a nice add.  The added resolution is also important to me as I often like to use a square format.  Did you see any improvement in AF?  Did you get any indication as to a likely shipping date?

stevenfr

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2018, 01:06:17 PM »

Cam

I never use Af when shooting landscape photos. I always prefer to set the focus manually.

I would check with your dealer on availability of the back.

Steven

kers

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2018, 06:02:43 PM »

Hello Steven,
This all looks very nice indeed.
Since 150MP is about pixels-( and subsequently lenses)  could you share with us some 100% crops?
also the 3200asa ones...
That would be very informative.
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cgarnerhome

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2018, 07:03:47 PM »

Cam

I never use Af when shooting landscape photos. I always prefer to set the focus manually.

I would check with your dealer on availability of the back.

Steven
I had the chance to be hands on with the IQ4 150 today and the live view is much improved and will certainly help me with manual focus.  Love the live histogram and the ability to eliminate the dark frame easily.  A lot of meaningful improvements for my style of shooting.

BAB

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2018, 03:48:08 PM »

Did you have the chance to test out the Integrated Step Focusing feature on any situation and PP the files?
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stevenfr

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2018, 06:39:43 PM »

I did not. I only had just under two hours and six compositions I wanted to do plus ISO sweeps in two locations before dusk.

Did you have the chance to test out the Integrated Step Focusing feature on any situation and PP the files?

stevenfr

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2018, 04:20:00 PM »

I will be in Vancouver on Wednesday November 28th to to give a talk at a Phase One event at Ray Lum Studios from 4pm to 8pm. My talk will be my experiences with the new Phase One IQ4 150 megapixel camera. As well, the print titled Crimson Dogwood printed at 43" x 57" will be at the event. Ulf Lijegren Phase One Global Technical Support Manager will be at the event to discuss his knowledge behind the new camera.

Please let me know if you are interested in attending the event.

gagemanning

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2018, 09:00:46 PM »

Thanks for giving us your thoughts. I had the opportunity to borrow it a few weeks ago for a weekend.  I didn't get to shoot outside as much as I wanted do to spending time with family and the weather.  I can conclude it works very well with technical camera and definitely does not have as much lens cast.  The images as expected are wonderful, second to none.  The live view as you mention definitely works much better.

I did feel that they were still very far off from having a finished product.  The startup was very slow and I felt like the menu system was still not where it should be.  Might be because I'm used to the IQ3100 and they have made changes to the user interface and I just need to get used to it.  I just felt like I was waisting a lot of time going from menu to menu to get to where I wanted. 

gage
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stevenfr

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2018, 10:38:56 PM »

Gage

The firmware on the prototype was not complete. I believe they are just starting to ship with final firmware. I would suggest trying a shipping version. I did a 43” x 57” print from the new camera. The detail in the leaves of the tree was very good. Especially, given The print was done from a iso 800 shot.

I am hoping to have my back by the end of the year or early in January. I leave for Japan in the middle of January. I should have it by the time I leave at the latest.

Steven

nemtom

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2018, 06:44:05 PM »

I could borrow one for the last weekend to shoot with a technical camera - just to try out how well it behaves. The weather was typical Danish gloomy early winter, so I only had just an hour to shoot outside - meaning a single photograph was taken. But the general impression is good. It has much less color cast with the 23mm Rodenstock than the IQ3 100MP.
The sky was very dull, so the final image has some curves adjustments and clarity applied on it, and the file seems to be able to play along quite well.
The firmware version the back had was pretty close to the version the cameras are initially shipped with, and the startup time was around the same time the IQ3 boots. I didn't measure it, but did not feel noticeably slower.



(Note that I'm affiliated with Phase One, being a Capture One developer, so my opinion might be considered biased.)
« Last Edit: December 04, 2018, 06:51:43 PM by nemtom »
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Wayne Fox

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2018, 01:02:01 AM »

Thanks for posting. Was an LCC used?  what would be helpful is seeing the file in color without an LCC or correction of the issues we usually see with tech lenses.  Also curious if you used the center filter or corrected vignetting in post.
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nemtom

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #12 on: December 09, 2018, 06:07:32 PM »

Thanks for posting. Was an LCC used?  what would be helpful is seeing the file in color without an LCC or correction of the issues we usually see with tech lenses.  Also curious if you used the center filter or corrected vignetting in post.

I did not use LCC nor center filter. I used the Lens Correction / Light falloff slider (to 100%) with the Rodenstock 23mm profile.
There is one reason I will not share the original of this file, which is an embarrassing reason. I used the XY the first time, and while I thought it was locked down, it wasn't and I got a few millimeters of shift. Obviously I saw the vignette in the preview, but I thought it is the filter system causing it (another first time for the lee 150mm holder and the 23mm).
But later on I reallized this lame issue, so I can give you that raw file : https://drive.google.com/open?id=1YpgS4CsNescNiX_ZszbNb6VcV0I7Y3HP

Also please be aware that this back ended up at the firmware test team because of the production QA didn't find it satisfactory for the end customers - for an unknown reason to me. And also as it is a test device, it is not kept clean, you will find a few dust spots.
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NancyP

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Re: Phase One XF IQ4 150 megapixel camera system prototype field test
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2018, 02:29:48 PM »

Ooooooh!!! Live RAW histogram!!!  Those of us using smaller formats would love to have manufacturers add this feature.

I don't really understand the implementation of dark frames in most cameras. If what one wants to do is to subtract noise, it makes more sense to shoot a large number of dark frames at a given ambient temperature, average them out, use the averaged dark frame for your subtraction. The typical manufacturer's protocol of "one image, one dark frame" seems odd. It isn't that hard to get sets of averaged dark frames taken at specific temperatures, eg,  30, 20, 10, 0 degrees C - a set of four averaged dark frames for each sensor used. Then you are done - you have accounted for thermal noise and for stuck pixels, for the life of the camera.  I only know astrophotography use of dark frames - fairly important - hot pixels matter more - common AP protocol is to shoot multiple dark frames before and after the image frames, for a more accurate approximation of average temperature of the sensor.
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