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Wide Angle with Digital

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#21 marriard


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Posted 13 January 2003 - 12:53 PM

However, the arguement here is about a consistently good graduation of blues underwater across the board, and I know for a fact they are still frowned upon by picture editors because of the cloudy or dirty blues, the current chips produce.

I can produce images straight from my Nikonos, untouched onto a slide projector (and have lots of times) on a liveaboard and no-one on the dive would believe it was the same place. I am sure Scotty has produced equally clear shots in far from optimum viz.

This is where I hope the foveon chip will come into its own.

Interesting points - I have some observations:

I have found that most picture editors have a 'bias' against digital images still, and expect to see dirty blues or problems- whether they are there or not.

I had a discussion with one last week over an image of mine he wanted to use - the digital one was MUCH better, but he wanted the transparency because he was 'worried about the print ending up looking digital'. Turns out he hadn't even looked at the digital submissions.

Of course the first thing he would have done if he had taken the transparency was to scan it and make it digital. (It is a long story and I wont bore you with it).

I am now at the point with the S2 where I can consistantly get the same quality blues I was getting with slide film. However it take some time and experimenting with settings to get what I was looking for.

There is nothing I can see wrong with the blues in my above posted image - perhaps it is not the sensor itself, but the photographer? Or perhaps slide film compensates better for bad vis (yes vis was pretty good for that image)? Or even the thought "with Prova I'd shoot this at F5.6 with 1/500 shutter speed, I'll set my camera to that for this image." I am seeing a lot of professional photographers not taking the time to go through the learning curve you need to go through with new equipment to produce the results you are looking for.

I think a lot of it is just the industry not quite keeping pace - and I can understand that - digital makes all their traditional methods obselete and that is a lot of change. And change is scary for most.

Also a slide projector is not a fair way to compare anything - almost none of them are in any way light corrected. And lets face it, with the people on this discussion so far - it is likely that we are the 'best' photog on board so we should be impressing everyone :-)

I wouldn't count on this generation of Froveon chip to solve anything. Especially if this is a problem I am unsure even exists.

Random thoughts of mine - what do you think?

#22 laz217


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Posted 13 January 2003 - 06:58 PM

Scottyb brings up an interesting point I have noticed in shooting digital. I hope you guys don't mind that I steer a little off-course from your topic on the blue gradients in water.

Scottyb's mention that the colors on digital shots seem to be truer to life is most apparent to me when shooting Queen Angels. After seeing many shots taken on film of Queen Angels, I've noticed that the areas around the crown are reproduced in a dark tone of blue. In comparison, digital seems to reproduce the iridescent blue-green that I would personally say matches closer with what I see.

Is this a limitation on printing or slide processing being able to reproduce these colors? If not, any ideas why this occurs? Your thoughts on the matter would be of much interest to me.
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#23 Helge Suess

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Posted 22 January 2003 - 05:40 AM


There's another factor: white balance.
Most cameras doing white balance (esp. when you let them decide what to do in auto mode) will dump more or less info from the original raw data.
Depending on the settings and algorithm you may get pretty different results. the best would be to shoot in raw mode only but it takes too much space on the chips.
I had a few tests in the pool to find out what WB did to my shots. I haven't got my WA port yet, it's still on the way, so I did a few 35mm shots only.
What I found out is, that as long as you stick to the WB value matching your lights (around 5000K for flash, around 3400K for video lights) you get at least a consistent behaviour. I'll do a few more as soon as I've got the port.
I think it's worth experimenting with the WB settings. We're lucky, compared to slides, where WB is always daylight (somewhere around 5000K)

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#24 james


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Posted 22 January 2003 - 08:46 AM

Shooting RAW makes this a totally moot point. Raw files are only ~12 megs on the S2/D100/D60 and they write fast enough that they are the preferred format for most people. Write times for RAW files have already been posted in other threads (I did an experiment w/ my S2 at Kasey's request)

The exception is the E20 which takes much longer to write RAW files.

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#25 tshepherd


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Posted 22 January 2003 - 08:56 AM

Raw files are only ~12 megs on the S2/D100/D60

Not to be picky, Raw files on the D60 generally range from 4.5 - 10 MB, depending on the subject.

#26 wetpixel



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Posted 22 January 2003 - 02:23 PM

I think a lot of it is just the industry not quite keeping pace - and I can understand that - digital makes all their traditional methods obselete and that is a lot of change. And change is scary for most.

The current generation of kids are growing up used to the "digital look." The "old" folk will all go away soon, and the younger generation will no longer crave that "film look."

Although, it seems that most people on this board (regardless of age) have embraced digital. I mean "old" in terms of spirit, of course. :)
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#27 craig


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Posted 22 January 2003 - 03:38 PM

This is a long, meandering thread but there's a point I'd like to raise with everyone...

Given the fair assumption that you have (otherwise) identical digital and film rigs, i.e. lenses, and ports, we'd all have to agree that the light entering the lens will be identical for the two and the image will be exposed on the imaging plane the same way. In other words, the light itself doesn't know the difference. Now, we all know that neither film nor digital does a perfect job of recording that image, but we'd like our medium of choice to provide great fidelity. If film really renders water better, it has to be because it doesn't get it right, since film can't tell that it is "water".

Not that it's bad, necessarily. Digital may do water more poorly, but then again it may (at least sometimes) be just the water or the light. As film and digital drive toward their own ideal performance, they will approach one another. Film is far more mature than digital, clearly, but it also can be unfaithful. Why else would you use Velvia?

To the extent that there remains a distinct film or digital "look" technology is not done improving. Once we have our perfect imager, then we can destroy it all in Photoshop.
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