really big prints from 35mm film and digital

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by ksmattfish, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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  2. PatrickHMS

    PatrickHMS TPF Noob!

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    Interesting,

    The results of that sure go against what most people think and say
    about an enlargement of "same" photo taken as a film image vs. a
    digital image.

    Wonder if it is an honest straight-up comparison of the two, or if either
    image had any funny business we don't know about done to it...
     
  3. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What funny business? We are talking about the be all and ends all of comparisons. Which format can we squeeze the utter most performance out of. Sending the image to JPL Labs to get the NASA gurus to do the enlargement would still be a fair comparison providing it did start with the original RAW files from the camera.

    What would you consider funny business?
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    It's simple enough to do your own comparison if you think they were up to something. I can see enough of a difference between 8mp APS and 35mm film in 12"x18" prints to convince me. It might surprise some to learn that once upon a time I was a die-hard, digital hating, film geek (see my first several thousand TPF posts). :)
     
  5. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    I think nearly everyone who was serious about photography hated digital in the early days. Nothing abnormal about that. ;)

    What a fascinating video Matt. I was pretty sure this new batch of full frame cameras had to be close to film quality by now, but I had no idea they were equal and better. My old film professor is going to be pissed. He was the most intense luddite I ever met.
     
  6. PatrickHMS

    PatrickHMS TPF Noob!

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    I never said that there was any, just leaving room if there had been somewhere along the line. Definitely hping that it was an honest comparison, if people are always honest.

    Guess I learned a long time ago that all is not always as it appears to be.

    The end results surprised me enough that I just wondered if someone else on here might claim foul about something that happened that we did not see.
     
  7. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I got the impression that the folks who initiated the test know enough about photography, or have a stake in one side or the other. I would assume the printers would use the demonstration for publicity, and would want to demonstrate that they can do a good job for both film and digital photographers; business is business and they want to sell to everybody.

    In my opinion there was a little funny business, but I don't know if it was intentional. Film would've had a better chance had they used ISO 100 or 50. I see a big difference between ISO 100 and 400 film in my own work, but I usually can't see much difference between ISO 100 and 400 from my DSLRs.

    Beyond the film vs. digital aspect I think the video is interesting because of the massive size prints. People on the internet regularly claim that the max print size for either 35mm film or digital is less than a meter by a meter. Long before I went digital my own personal opinion was that 35mm film was for 8x12 or smaller. Obviously either can go up to billboard size quite nicely.
     
  8. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I slowly brought APS digital into my work at weddings replacing 35mm for details, action shots, and candids, but I still used medium format film (Fuji NPH 400) for the formal portraits. The end of film for me began when I noticed how well the 8x12 photos from the 20D compared to the 8x10 photos from my Hasselblad. Later that summer I sold a dozen 16"x20" and larger landscape photographs to Cisco Systems. Some of the prints were from 4x5in, some from 6x7cm, and some from the 20D. I remember telling the client that I was unsure the 20D shots could be enlarged that much, but I'd try. I was stunned, shocked, and down right freaked out when I saw my hand printed, silver gelatin prints from 6x7 Tmax 100 next to ink jet prints from my 8mp 20D. That was the final straw; the next day both my Hassy 500c/m and Pentax 67II were for sale. As soon as one sold I bought a 5D, and I've got no regrets.
     
  9. panocho

    panocho TPF Noob!

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    I agree with that and definitely suspect the whole thing is intentionally biased towards digital. Or more than suspect, I would say it's obvious. So the question does remain...

    ...or not; as you please. I mean, it doesn't bother me at all the claim that digital is better, or whatever you like. As a matter of fact, I myself shoot digital (not because I think it's better, though; far from that). I'm just saying the whole thing sounds like new-technologies propaganda to me -regardless of a fair comparison, if there is such thing.
     
  10. ekool

    ekool Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well, I can't really comment on the test results... but I can comment that the dude hosting the show scares me.
     
  11. epp_b

    epp_b No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    That was my very first thought when I watched it, too :lol: That guy fell off the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down. And then a badger ripped up his face.

    Seriously, though, that was poorly thought out (or maybe it wasn't, read on...), unscientific and done purely for ratings and advertising (how much did Nikon pay for the D700 to win?).

    The biggest flaw is obviously ISO 400. Why? (yes, that's rhetorical, Nikon probably paid them to do that).

    Everyone knows that ISO 400 is about the threshold for acceptable quality and grain in film. But even on the D40, ISO 400 looks great. No doubt, it looks phenomenal on the D700. OK, we know that ISO 400 is better on a digital than on film. Get over it, move on, you don't need to test that.

    And who uses ISO 400 in a studio where they have all the lighting equipment in the world at their disposal?

    Take this video with a mountain of sodium chloride.
     
  12. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    While I agree that picking iso400 seems to have been purposely done to give the D700 an advantage, my response to that is: so what? Their test is not invalidated by that at all. So they should stick to iso 100 because film can't cleanly go to 400? Well that's an important detail that you can't brush aside.

    Here's an awful metaphor to illustrate the point:
    Two guys want to race a classic 70's muscle car with a modern equivalent muscle car around a track to see which gets around the track faster. The day of the race comes and it's pouring rain. The guy in the 70's car says "No way I'm racing in this" while the guy in the new muscle car, with it's computer traction control, antilock brakes and advanced limited slip differential has no fear of racing in those conditions.

    Indeed, if all other variables were equal, the newer car would be much easier to control and would certainly win the race in these difficult driving conditions.

    So the only way the classic car could win would be on a sunny dry day. Isn't this an important and telling detail? Obviously the new car is the better performer.
     

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