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Author Topic: D800 vs Leica S2  (Read 18160 times)

marcmccalmont

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #20 on: April 08, 2012, 09:33:45 am »

Yes, but the differences that Mr. Chambers observed in his tests had more to do with lens quality than the sensor, although there could be some alignment issues. It would be interesting to see results with the IQ180 on a technical camera with a true apochromatic lens.

Regards,

Bill
when my D800E shows up later this month I'll shoot the same scene with the WRS/IQ180/Rodenstock HR and the D800/Leica I'm guessing similar results on the pixel level just more pixels with the IQ180. I'll post the results.
Marc
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Marc McCalmont

torger

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #21 on: April 08, 2012, 10:25:40 am »

when my D800E shows up later this month I'll shoot the same scene with the WRS/IQ180/Rodenstock HR and the D800/Leica I'm guessing similar results on the pixel level just more pixels with the IQ180. I'll post the results.
Marc

I look forward to that! Do you have any wide angles? Rodenstock Digaron-W 40mm compared to PC-E 24mm on the D800E (about the same FOV), both shifted a bit I think would be the ultimate test to show the superiority of medium format tech cameras :-). In that case I think we'll not only see more pixels for the IQ180, but also sharper pixels in the corners thanks to the better lens.
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marcmccalmont

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #22 on: April 08, 2012, 05:03:02 pm »

I've got a 40hr and 14-24 2.8
Marc
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Marc McCalmont

Ray

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #23 on: April 08, 2012, 07:44:44 pm »

I just said sensor size is irrelevant. Take a Sony A900 and a Nex 7. Absolutely the same. I think this is a wonderful era. I am simply going to wait for a cheaper APS 36MP camera. I think 35mm sensors are a historical dead end. APS-C is where it is going to be.

I guess you are just trying to be provocative. Right?  ;D  

Surely we all know by now that the smaller sensor can only equal the image quality of the larger sensor if the pixels of the smaller sensor are at a later or more advanced stage of development, as is the case in the NEX 7 compared with the A900.

Despite the pixel pitch of the NEX-7 being smaller than that of the A900, its pixels seem to have a significantly higher DR at base ISO, and approximately the same tonal range and color sensitivity as the A900 pixel. The SNR of the A900 pixel at 18% grey is slightly better, but not by a degree which is significant, so one would expect over all image quality from both sensors to be about the same, with the DR advantage to the NEX-7. One would also expect resolution to be about the same because both sensors have the same number of pixels.

In the case of the smaller-sensored D7000 compared with the full-frame D800, the image quality differences are entirely due to differences in sensor size because pixel quality and pixel size are the same in both cameras.

What do we find? According to DXOMark, SNR at 18% grey is over one stop better in the larger sensor, DR is about 1/2 a stop better, and Color Sensitivity is 1.8 bits better (a difference of 1 bit or greater being significant). Over all resolution (ie, LW/PH) is also better due to the larger sensor being able to accommodate more pixels of the same quality.

If Nikon were to produces an MF sensor about the same size as the IQ180, consisting of D7000 pixels, it would be a 90mp sensor, would have more than another stop better SNR than the D800, another 1/2 a stop better DR, another 1.8 bits or even 2 bits better color sensitivity, and better resolution resulting from its higher pixel count.

All these improvements would be entirely due to the increase in sensor size.

Also, another improvement to look forward to, is a 60mp full-frame sensor from Sony comprised of NEX-7 pixels. Such a camera would also have a 1/2 stop better DR than the NEX-7 and correspondingly better SNR, Color Sensitivity and resolution, due to the increase in sensor size.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2012, 09:19:50 pm by Ray »
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FMueller

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #24 on: April 08, 2012, 10:07:46 pm »

A friend of mine had an exhibition of his images at a gallery.
The size of the prints were 75cm square.
Shot with a D3x and with a Hassy H39.

Nobody could pick which one was shot with the Nikon or the Hassy and the viewers were all trained pro shooters.

W

There has been a notable lack of commentary on whether all these pixels mean better prints. Call me old fashioned, but I consider that the goal.
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ErikKaffehr

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #25 on: April 09, 2012, 12:03:31 am »

Hi,

It may depend on your view of better print. Some say that 12 MP is all that needed for any print, because a larger print is viewed at longer distance.

When Miles Hecker bought his Pentax 645D he made large prints from his Canon 5DII and the Pentax and really large prints turned out better on the Pentax 645D.

I seldom print larger than A2, and I was shooting both 12 MP APS-C and 24 MP full frame. Sometimes A2 prints were hard to tell apart. Now I have both 24MP full frame and 24 MP APS-C. I would say full frame is somewhat better, but APS-C gives better depth of field sometimes, so either may come out on the top.

In any case, if 36 MP is needed it is available at around 5000 USD (camera + lens) or at least it seems to be the case.

Best regards
Erik



There has been a notable lack of commentary on whether all these pixels mean better prints. Call me old fashioned, but I consider that the goal.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 03:49:00 am by ErikKaffehr »
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Ray

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2012, 09:08:31 am »

A friend of mine had an exhibition of his images at a gallery.
The size of the prints were 75cm square.
Shot with a D3x and with a Hassy H39.

Nobody could pick which one was shot with the Nikon or the Hassy and the viewers were all trained pro shooters.

W

Quite understandable really. That just goes to show how worthless comparisons of technical qualities are when viewing different shots of different scenes with different lighting conditions employing different processing. I presume the exhibition was not of identical scenes displayed side by side, one taken with the D3X and the other with the H39, using equivalent settings on both cameras for equal DoF and equally close ETTR exposures.

If one crops the D3X and H39 images to a square aspect ratio, one gets 16mp with the D3X and 29mp with the H39. At 240ppi, the D3X crop would be good for a 17"x17" print, and the H39 crop good for a 23"x23" print, without interpolation. At 75cm square (30") all images would need interpolation.

Whilst a 29mp image should have noticeably better resolution than a 16mp image on 30"x30" prints, it can be understandably difficult to be certain that the grass in one particular shot is sharper than the goat's hair in another shot.

If one checks the DXOMark site one can see that the D3X pixel appears to have better qualities than the H3DII 39 pixel. It has slightly better SNR at 18% grey, slightly better Tonal Range and slightly better Color Semsitivity by degrees which are so marginal they wouldn't be noticeable. However, the DR of the D3X pixel is significantly better by 1.47EV.

In a situation whereby the cropped D3X image is interpolated to a greater degree than the H39 image, the slight edge that the D3X has in respect of SNR, Tonal Range and Color Sensitivity would probably be reversed, giving the edge to the H39. But the differences are so small they would not be noticed, either way.

However, at a 75cm square print size, the D3X should still have about 1 stop better DR. But again, to discern that one particular shadow in a print of one particular scene was actually a deeper shadow in reality than another shadow in a print of a completely different scene which has received different processing, is not something even I could be certain about.  ;)

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DanLehman

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #27 on: April 09, 2012, 01:10:22 pm »

Quite understandable really.
 ...
the D3X pixel appears to have better qualities than the H3DII 39 pixel.
...
 the D3X should still have about 1 stop better DR.

!!  Not so understandable if some of what has been published
--rather infamously-- here is believed : that one can distinguish
MF & 35mm small prints from 30 feet, that MF pixels are just
better, and that MF has some multi-stop advantage in DR!

(Maybe these prints were too big and viewed too closely?)

 :D
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LKaven

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2012, 01:36:13 pm »

I just said sensor size is irrelevant. Take a Sony A900 and a Nex 7. Absolutely the same. I think this is a wonderful era. I am simply going to wait for a cheaper APS 36MP camera. I think 35mm sensors are a historical dead end. APS-C is where it is going to be.

The new crop of 35mm FF cameras all exceed the theoretical maximum performance of the APS-c sensor.  The theoretical maximum here is 100% quantum efficiency, and zero read noise.  For those reasons, I'm sticking with FF.

uaiomex

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2012, 04:17:08 pm »

True. "Digital 35" is the holy grail. I you go smaller than that, you compromise IQ. Bigger than that and all things get too complicated and insanely expensive.
Oskar Barnack must be laughing of joy in heaven.
Eduardo


quote author=LKaven link=topic=65427.msg519381#msg519381 date=1333992973]
The new crop of 35mm FF cameras all exceed the theoretical maximum performance of the APS-c sensor.  The theoretical maximum here is 100% quantum efficiency, and zero read noise.  For those reasons, I'm sticking with FF.
[/quote]
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John Camp

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #30 on: April 09, 2012, 05:02:31 pm »

True. "Digital 35" is the holy grail. I you go smaller than that, you compromise IQ. Bigger than that and all things get too complicated and insanely expensive.
Oskar Barnack must be laughing of joy in heaven.
Eduardo

I wonder if you could go taller than standard FF, while keeping the width the same, and using the same lenses...tending toward the 4/3 aspect ratio. I read somewhere, though, that lenses are optimized for one particular position on the camera, and that making the sensor taller might run into some lens design issues (with current lenses.)

I think the D300, with its modest cost for a FF camera, could be the death-knell of the APS-C, especially since I suspect FF prices will continue to decline. With m4/3, you get whole systems that are notably smaller than APS-C, with quality that is very close, which is an advantage; with FF, you get better sensors than APS-C, which is an advantage; I don't see much of an advantage with APS-C, even though I love the Pentax K5 and Nikon D7000. (Though if Pentax could produce a NEX-sized camera for use with its tiny pancakes, that'd be an interesting camera...not sure it'd sell much, though.

JC  
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 05:04:06 pm by John Camp »
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BJL

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35mm DSLR prices have been about flat since the original 5D
« Reply #31 on: April 09, 2012, 10:40:20 pm »

I wonder if you could go taller than standard FF, while keeping the width the same, and using the same lenses...tending toward the 4/3 aspect ratio.
If the mirror is dispensed of, and if lens costs rather than sensor costs are the most important factor, then maybe sensors could be made a bit bigger, even with the constraint of always cropping one way or the other due to the corners of the sensor falling outside the usable image circle. But I doubt that there is really much push to squeeze that little extra out of existing lenses. A version of this has been done by Panasonic with the GH2 and such, though in the opposite direction, and for the different motive of accomodating the range from 4:3 stills to 16:9 video.

I think the D300, with its modest cost for a FF camera, could be the death-knell of the APS-C, especially since I suspect FF prices will continue to decline.
Prices for the low end of 35mm format DSLRs have been remarkably flat ever since the original 5D was released  --- or at least after the first quick downward price correction to about US$3000. And there is still the cost barrier for sensors that do not fit into the industry-standard stepper field size limit of 33x26mm, meaning that 36x24mm sensors cannot be made without special stitching processes. So I see no reason to expect a further downward trend, and good reason to expect a persistent, substantial price barrier between 36x24mm and the various smaller formats.

On the other hand, if, as widely speculated, Canon does introduce a mirrorless system using the sensor size of its G1X, smaller than EF-S, so that four major mirrorless systems use sub-APS-C formats, maybe there will be a downsizing of the mainstream of interchangeable lens cameras. It might yet be that Olympus amd Kodak got that part right in choosing the 4/3" sensor size: that the 1.5x and 1.6x crops chosen by Nikon and Canon were dictated by the past (better backward compatability with existing 35mm format lenses) rather than the future (where a smaller format can better meet the size/performance trade-offs of a great proportion of interchngeable lens photogaphy.) woth the new mirrrorless systems relying predominately on new lenses, not retrofitted SLR lenses, we might at last be seeing sensor format choices free from film-related historical baggage.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2012, 10:43:18 pm by BJL »
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: 35mm DSLR prices have been about flat since the original 5D
« Reply #32 on: April 09, 2012, 10:51:22 pm »

It might yet be that Olympus amd Kodak got that part right in choosing the 4/3" sensor size: that the 1.5x and 1.6x crops chosen by Nikon and Canon were dictated by the past (better backward compatability with existing 35mm format lenses) rather than the future (where a smaller format can better meet the size/performance trade-offs of a great proportion of interchngeable lens photogaphy.) woth the new mirrrorless systems relying predominately on new lenses, not retrofitted SLR lenses, we might at last be seeing sensor format choices free from film-related historical baggage.

Isn't the choise of Nikon with the yet smaller 1 series sensor even smarter then?  :D

Looking at the way it does perform today already and the progress still ahead in sensor development, it seems clear that 1 series sized sensor of the following generation will have D90 level performance, which is all we need for exhibition grade A3+ prints.

From a strategic standpoint, Pentax and Nikon are the winners in terms of compact performance because they dared to go smaller. In fact sensors that size become usable in mobile devices. The lenses needed to cover 4/3 become a bit too large.

If Canon were to enter the mirrorless market, my guess would be that they would go small also.

Cheers,
Bernard

hubell

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #33 on: April 10, 2012, 12:08:00 am »

I look forward to that! Do you have any wide angles? Rodenstock Digaron-W 40mm compared to PC-E 24mm on the D800E (about the same FOV), both shifted a bit I think would be the ultimate test to show the superiority of medium format tech cameras :-). In that case I think we'll not only see more pixels for the IQ180, but also sharper pixels in the corners thanks to the better lens.

In the real world of actually taking landscape photographs where critical focus is essential, the Nikon 800 has a huge advantage over tech cameras with high mp digital backs. The ability to achieve accurate focus with Live View. Any theoretical advantage of a digital back with 80 mp compared to the 800 will quickly dissipate if the latter consistently achieves more accurate focus.

ErikKaffehr

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #34 on: April 10, 2012, 12:43:46 am »

Hi,

I would assume that knowledgeable users can achieve correct focus on technical cameras. My understanding is that some cameras like some Alpa models do have calibrated focusing rings and can be used with a laser rangefinder for very good accuracy.

But I agree that live view at actual pixels is what is needed for accurate focusing. Using precision scales and a laser disto is a workaround. The IQ-180 has some limited LV capability.

What strikes me is that technical cameras are the ones that would benefit most from todays technology. I would expect peaking to be very useful with Scheimpflug, for instance.

Whatever the format, it will take some hard work to make the best of it. A stable tripod, exact focus, optimum aperture, MLU and cable release or self timer. On the other hand, with DSLRs we can relax a bit. Decent results are possible with AF and antishake.

Best regards
Erik

In the real world of actually taking landscape photographs where critical focus is essential, the Nikon 800 has a huge advantage over tech cameras with high mp digital backs. The ability to achieve accurate focus with Live View. Any theoretical advantage of a digital back with 80 mp compared to the 800 will quickly dissipate if the latter consistently achieves more accurate focus.
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ghoonk

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #35 on: April 10, 2012, 01:25:55 am »

Peaking with Scheimpflug? I wish!

If Hasselblad gets around to introducing 30-second LV with the existing H4D-40/50/60 along with focus peaking even with the HTS, I'll never need another camera :D

The D800 almost seems appealing, save for the fact that it doesn't play nice with the PC-E lenses, which limits its appeal to landscape and architectural photographers who use tilt-shift often to achieve optimal perspective and DoF. Shot with similar care as a medium format camera, it could make a viable alternative to people who want to get close to the quality of MFD but are not able to justify the money for it (which isn't a bad thing in itself).
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: D800 vs Leica S2
« Reply #36 on: April 10, 2012, 01:45:18 am »

The D800 almost seems appealing, save for the fact that it doesn't play nice with the PC-E lenses, which limits its appeal to landscape and architectural photographers who use tilt-shift often to achieve optimal perspective and DoF. Shot with similar care as a medium format camera, it could make a viable alternative to people who want to get close to the quality of MFD but are not able to justify the money for it (which isn't a bad thing in itself).

The 24mm PCE works mostly without any issue on the D800, you just need to select the right rotation direction when switching the tilt direction from landscape to portrait which is a worst a very minor inconvenience.

The other 2 PCE lenses work without any limitations it seems, but i have not tried myself.

Cheers,
Bernard

BJL

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"Smaller than APS-C is better" does not mean "smaller is always better"
« Reply #37 on: April 10, 2012, 09:08:50 am »

Isn't the choise of Nikon with the yet smaller 1 series sensor even smarter then?
Maybe; I was not suggesting that the 4/3 size is uniquely and exactly right, which would be silly since surely there is significant variation amongst ILC users in the trade-offs they wish to make between the advantages of a larger format (resolution, dynamic range, low light ability when "big glass" is used, etc.) and the advantages of a smaller one (size, weight, cost, and maybe close focusing ability). I would expect and hope that the mirrorless camera systems offer us a variety of format sizes, moving beyond film-era restrictions imposed by the need to use one of just two common formats for rolls of film (24mm wide and 54mm wide).

My guess is that sizes in the range from Nikon One up to Sony NEX and Samsung NX could all do well in the future mainstream of ILCs, but that the "APS-C" upper end might fade as backward compatability with SLR lenses fades as a factor in purchasing decisions, just as the formerly common prediction that the DSLR mainstream would move back to 36x24mm format for the sake of better compatability with film SLR lenses has mostly vanished with the maturing of lens systems for the new DSLR formats.

I am pessimistic about the Pentax Q system; for me it is a good illustration of the law of diminishing returns when you push a design too far towards one extreme. Do not mistake my comment for the silly, blanket, single-minded claim that "smaller is better"!


P. S. This is getting of the topic of this thread; maybe I will summarize the issues of format size choices more completely in a new thread.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 11:48:22 am by BJL »
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hjulenissen

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Re: 35mm DSLR prices have been about flat since the original 5D
« Reply #38 on: April 10, 2012, 11:19:36 am »

If the mirror is dispensed of, and if lens costs rather than sensor costs are the most important factor, then maybe sensors could be made a bit bigger, even with the constraint of always cropping one way or the other due to the corners of the sensor falling outside the usable image circle. But I doubt that there is really much push to squeeze that little extra out of existing lenses. A version of this has been done by Panasonic with the GH2 and such, though in the opposite direction, and for the different motive of accomodating the range from 4:3 stills to 16:9 video.
I believe that many (most?) DSLR lenses have internal square-ish black masks for glare-reduction (?), reducing the usable image circle to something less than what the optics alone suggests. The Hartblei (?) MF back bundled with Canon TS-lenses suggests that this is not always the case, though.

If cost of lense was >> cost of sensor, I would expect cameras with square sensors fully enclosing the usable image circle of the lense. Then any desired part of the image circle could be used, be it square, rectangular, circular or some other shape. Either directly, or as a starting-point for "lense-correcting" algorithms producing a rectangular output.

Obviously, things ain't so, large sensors still cost a lot more than smaller ones, and probably are significant compared to most photographers lenses.

-h  
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John Camp

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Re: 35mm DSLR prices have been about flat since the original 5D
« Reply #39 on: April 10, 2012, 05:42:58 pm »

Isn't the choice of Nikon with the yet smaller 1 series sensor even smarter then?  :D

I don't think so -- in fact, I think Nikon made a mistake. The benefit of the m4/3 system is in the size of the bodies and the lenses, not in the sensor itself. No matter how good the sensors get, they will not be as good (given the same technology) as FF. For some reason, Nikon made it's 1 series bodies and lenses *larger" than the small m4/3 bodies. And, IMHO, the m4/3 bodies can't go too much smaller and still be convenient to handle. So, Nikon's system seems to me to combine the problems of larger system size with smaller sensor. I understand the quality is quite good, for now, but as sensor tech moves closer and closer to equity across all lines, size will tell. I'm not a particular m4/3 fanboy. I have both m4/3 and Nikon systems, and I'm waiting for a D800. I was not committed fully to m4/3 when the 1 series came out, and as a Nikon user, I was quite interested in it, until I saw one. Then, not so much -- it seemed to me to be neither one thing or the other.
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