As I'm learning here every minute I enter the APUG rooms: there will be a RF following: for it being quiet and light.
So I'll tell you people when it's there and compare the 2.
Very very education thread but costly!:D
Another question is that if both the cameras are hand held would you be able to see any significant difference in the pictures, very little if any I would imagine.
Does "no mirror" really = sharper negs?
Yes, it does, shortly.
Its simple physics, its tricky to counter balance that slapping force in constantly effective and elegant way, also the mirror should be all the way up in order for the shutter to act and the clock is ticking.
In the mean time, You have black out in the viewfinder.
In those cameras that have horizontal shutters You have additional distraction, so You end up having vertical and horizontal dance.
In those having vertical shutters, the resulted shake from the mirror might be amplified or damped but hardly in consistent manner.
Central, shutter-in-lense is probably the most elegant way for either SLR or RF.
Comparing focal plane RF with focal plane or central shutter SLR is disputable but if we compare central shutter RF with focal plane SLR or even with central shutter SLR, then its a no contest, IMHO.
Another trade off is that in SLR You also have to compensate the lens optical formula for the size of the mirror that stays between the focal plane and the lens.
"Sharper" implies a comparison. The settings in which mirror lockup is needed are not normally done with a rangefinder, so its hard to compare. For example very long lenses and macrophotography are not usually done with a rangefinder.
In terms of hand-holding normal and wide lenses; I don't see any differnece in sharpness between a rangefinder and SLR 35mm camera.
Now, if you are discussing 6x6 SLRs vs rangefinder 6x6 I know from experience my Rollieflex SLX needs pretty fast shutterspeeds for hand-held photography with lenses 80mm and longer (1/250 or 1/500).
It depends on what you shoot. Macro shots or long exposures can make a difference if there's no mirror slapping around. I have a Canon FTB that has mirror up mode. The screen is blacked out when I put the mirror up though. I think it more of a problem if you don't have a tripod or shaky hands.
The effect of mirror on image quality is, according to somebody, visible for shutter speeds from around 1/4" to 1/30" or so.
From 1/125" the effect should be small. There should always is a loss of quality, so you'd better raise the mirror if you work on tripod, but whereas at 1/8" raising the mirror gives a clear gain in image quality, at 1/500" it doesn't, using a normal lens.
That said: when using a tripod and if you have mirror lock-up, do use it always.
If using the camera hand-held, the real difference can be felt at 1/15" or 1/30" which are the two speeds that one may be induced to use free-hand and which exhibit more the effect of mirror slapping. If you normally take pictures in normal daylight conditions, and your shutter speed normally is above 1/60", I wouldn't worry about the effect of the mirror on quality, it's hand-holding which, in itself, degrades quality more than mirror.
I've read conflicting reports over sharpness at high shutter speeds with or without mirror.
My impression is that tripod work is always superior, at every speed, to hand-holding, which leads me to believe that also at 1/500" there is a decay caused by the hand shake.
Mirror slap is the lest of the issues.... you can blur a handheld image at most any shutter speed... a steady hand is needed and evident even for photos at 1/1000th if you are splitting hairs.
I have an aunt that blurred every photo she made with a 1/125 instamatic... my dad always made fun of her snapshots.
Go make some photographs that matter and stop worrying about what other people think of your rig.
Do a physics equation on the effects... the film gate is solid with the body, what is the ratio of weight of the mirror to the whole mechanism. Then the damping. It is nothing... and while we are at this pissing war, what is the effect of inertia of the shutter curtains, I bet we could do some math that shows that perhaps some of the rangefinders have a larger torque effect on the system (ratio of shutter to body) that is effect more than a heavy Nikon with those titanium foil shutters, this is congecture on my part at this time, but if someone is willing to do the math, I bet there is something to this.
Oh ... go make some photographs!