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  1. #11

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    I used the porta films exclusively with my Nikon F5 for years. I develop and print all my color work. After buying and using a Mamiya 6, the Nikon was no longer used. In fact, I sold all my Nikon equipment about 1 year ago. The difference even at 8x10 was huge, to my eye. At print size of 16x20, well you know what I'm going to write. Now that I'm using 4x5, the Mamiya is on the shelf. Anyone looking for a Mamiya 6 Oh, I'll be contact printing 8x10 Porta 400 soon....I guess my approach to photography has changed as well.
    Last edited by Pasto; 05-28-2012 at 08:58 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #12
    Athiril's Avatar
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    A wedding shooter isn't going to print their own colour, it's too much to ask for most people to print their own colour, let alone something like for weddings, where even with film, it's a huge volume. Unless it's for ordered large prints etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by brofkand View Post
    RPC: I haven't compared 120 Portra to 35mm. I have compared Ektar 100 across 645 and 35mm. I have also compared Acros across 645 and 35mm. Acros was wet printed (11x14, Ilford MG Fiber-based), Ektar was scan and inkjet (scanned on my Epson v500 for 120 or Plustek 7400 for 35mm, and Costco did the printing). I don't have the equipment to wet print color. The results were very good in all examples, but it wasn't a direct test. I didn't have my LX and M645 beside each other, taking turns making exposures.

    I shot different subject matter with each roll. I didn't do the prints with the expectation of comparison, so it isn't a scientific test. I'd love to own a Nikon or Minolta scanner that can do 120, but until then I can't do a real comparison. I think it would make for an interesting test -- make everything as equal as possible, then compare.

    I am simply going by what my 35mm negatives have produced --- very good prints. Maybe not up there to 120 quality, but definitely better than my 6MP Nikon D40 DSLR (and I think it produced some good 13x19's).



    A well made shot scanned on a plustek 7400 will beat a shot in medium format and any flatbed scanner, sorry. Flatbeds are low-resolving.



    Take your 35mm and scan it on the V500, then compare to the same Plustek scan, this will show you the volume of difference between the scanners, this difference will also apply to medium format on your V500, but the amount of resolution loss is even greater due to the greater area of the film.

    Flatbeds are worse for medium format than 35mm, due to the greater amount of detail you're throwing away.

    I also have the V500. I think some scanner talk is necessary here to put it into perspective about what is being missed out on in the difference of the workflows of his 35mm and 645.

    The 7400 is rated at 3800 dpi which is 75 lp/mm, I rate my V500 at 26 lp/mm.

    On the V500, your 35mm may achieve 936 line pairs over the long edge (36mm) and lose 1764 line pairs by comparison to the 7400 scan.

    645 on the other hand, may achieve 1456 line pairs on the long edge, but lose 2744 line pairs by comparison to what your 35mm can get.

    Though 75 lp/mm / 3800 dpi is pretty good and quite high, 2800 dpi would be more of a safe bet for all formats. Which is a 55 lp/mm.

    Even for 35mm that'll still result in a nice large image, and can give you a very nice quality 10mp (2800 dpi) equivalent, and 30mp likewise for your 645 If you could achieve that in your workflow.

    That would translate to much nicer large prints. Such as 16x20".

    One last evil scanner talk thingy: Plustek is bringing out a dedicated dual 35/120 scanner, it's not simply an opticfilm with 120 capability (which would already would be a huge win on IQ for medium format shooters), they've revealed their goal is to exceed the CoolScan 9000. They say they've already got better dMax, and that release dates will be announced soon. (it's been a long time coming).
    Last edited by Athiril; 05-28-2012 at 11:46 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  3. #13
    AFenvy's Avatar
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    So I'm primarily a 35mm shooter here. I am quite happy with the results I get with it, but sometimes get the yearning for the smooth tones and lovely depth of field that are possible with medium format. I have heard that the difference between 35mm and 645 is not that much, and I should go to 6x7 to really notice a marked improvement. How true is this statement? Is 6x7 much better than 645?

  4. #14
    Athiril's Avatar
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    6x7 is better than 645, but 645 is much better than 35mm by a greater margin.

    645 has just about 3x the surface area of 35mm. You will frame differently due to ratio difference, you may even end up framing it closer up for portraits than you would 35mm.

    Focal length difference is approx 1.66x for 645 to 35mm. As opposed to 2x with 6x7.

    It's 1.2x for 645 to 6x7. 6x7 only has 1.5x greater area, the step up from 35mm to 645 is much bigger.


    Shooting with 180mm stopped down to f/5.6 in 6x7 is like using an 85mm at f/2.8 at the same focus distance.

    645 is much ligher and more easily portable, with more frames per roll, it is much more suited to stuff like weddings than 6x7 is.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by AFenvy View Post
    So I'm primarily a 35mm shooter here. I am quite happy with the results I get with it, but sometimes get the yearning for the smooth tones and lovely depth of field that are possible with medium format. I have heard that the difference between 35mm and 645 is not that much, and I should go to 6x7 to really notice a marked improvement. How true is this statement? Is 6x7 much better than 645?
    The difference is significant, but it is not a magic bullet. This is true in the same way as moving from 400 speed film to 160 speed is significant. And in how better exposure placement and lighting improve quality, and moving from handheld to a monopod, and framing tightly in camera (getting closer or using a longer focal length or having the subject move closer) rather than cropping significantly at the enlarger.

    The biggest differences IMO, are seen though as the print size grows. I find that many compositions work better larger. For example an acquaintence of mine took a gorgeous shot of an arch in Arches N.P. I first saw it on a large monitor online so in the neighborhood of 11x14, a fine landscape at that size, tightly framed, well composed, beautiful colors, blah, blah, blah... Then I got to see it in real life at 30x40ish. The people at the base of the arch (which I didn't even notice at 11x14) became significant/noticeable/sharp and gave the shot scale and connection that was missing smaller. The shot went from "fine" to "truly stellar".

    That particular shot was done on 4x5 Velvia 50. At that print size, that scene printed from 35mm Portra 400 would have had to stretch hard to provide enough detail to make the same impact, personally I doubt it would have worked.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  6. #16
    CGW
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    One last evil scanner talk thingy: Plustek is bringing out a dedicated dual 35/120 scanner, it's not simply an opticfilm with 120 capability (which would already would be a huge win on IQ for medium format shooters), they've revealed their goal is to exceed the CoolScan 9000. They say they've already got better dMax, and that release dates will be announced soon. (it's been a long time coming).

    This has been a long time in the works, so long that I'm wondering if it's now vaporware. With film sales/demand still falling, this killer scanner would have to deliver enormous bang for the $ at a very reasonable price. Why did Nikon axe its scanners?

    I'm seeing less-than-awful prints pulled from Epson V700-V750--even 500--scans of 6x6 and 6x7 negs. YMMV, as always.

  7. #17
    Ken N's Avatar
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    Medium format will always trump 35mm, however, we have long since passed the point of sufficiency. I have absolutely no problem with using the latest version of Provia 400 in 35mm as my exclusive film. for shooting weddings. When in the studio where I have total control over my lighting, I use 160NC.

    Oh, and a bunch of B&W film...
    http://www.zone-10.com

    When you turn your camera on, does it return the favor?

  8. #18

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    IMHO, pretty much any time you double film area or resolution you'll see a difference. As other alluded to, how obvious the difference depends on final output size. It's been years since I shot film but with Agfapan 25 135 looked as good as anything up to 4x5. However, there was a definite improvement moving to 6x4.5cm at 8x10 and 6x7cm was even better especially moving up to 11x14. Larger than that 4x5 had the definite edge. If I never printed larger than 4x5 I'd never bother with anything larger 135 film. Why bother if the difference is impossible to see? I'm aware that others' opinions of what is acceptable image degradation varies greatly from mine. I don't know... maybe 135 lenses and film have improved over last thirty years such that old Agfapan 25 performance is no longer a valid "meter"?

    I want the "option" of going very large if I want so 6x12cm will be my new minimum film size and 4x5 stitched to 4x8 or 4x10 will be the max.

  9. #19

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    To me, i don't have any dedicated film scanner, but i did print 3 frames before when i was taking a workshop with some friends, 2 from MF and 1 from 35mm, to my eyes and my friends' eyes, those prints from MF on A3 outperformed that of 35mm in all aspects, so i will not look at 35mm compared to 35mm, if i will have a capable scanner and i will print a lot in the darkroom with big enlarger up to 4x5 then i may consider 35mm, but even when i compare my 6x6 negs to 6x7 and 6x12 i hate t look at 6x6 negs, size matters even some will keep saying else.

  10. #20

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    The smaller the sample, the better the scan you need. That fact alone will make a siginificant difference between 35mm and med format, even in the same type film. But heck, I shoot even Ektar
    in 8x10 and optically enlarge it - now THAT's a nice 16X20 print!

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