Quote Originally Posted by hrst View Post
In the end, it is just very simple; the curve shape tells us everything. If we have a linear system, the bias point does not matter; we can make additions and subtractions as long as we are on the linear region. Exactly the same works in analog electronics.

If the curve bows or shoulders, the contrast indeed is lower. Today's films, however, have very long linear portion.
Exactly!

Quote Originally Posted by hrst View Post
The old wisdom says that increasing exposure reduces contrast and thus perceived saturation. This has been a well-known fact. Somehow it got swapped around and became an internet legend in a completely opposite form.
This is a great point. I see saturation in two ways, one is technical, the other perceptual. Technical saturation is akin to color balance, i.e. A subject reaches proper or design saturation when that subject has enough exposure to be on the straight lines of all three curves. It is simply the design standard. Doesn't matter if we're talking about Velveeta 50 or 400 No Color.

Perceptual saturation is a different animal. Perceptual saturation is driven by composition, lighting, exposure placement of subjects, the development regime (N, N+, N-), paper choice......

Quote Originally Posted by hrst View Post
However, with today's films, in most cases, there should be no difference in contrast and saturation with slight overexposures (+1 to +2 stops) due to shouldering.
This is what I'm saying too.

Quote Originally Posted by hrst View Post
even if there is no shouldering, there still is the toe. With subjects with important shadows with colorful objects in the shadows, by overexposing a stop or two, you make sure that the shadows are not on the toe - and increase their saturation and contrast, without altering the saturation and contrast in midtones and highlights - given that the highlights are not difficultly high. This part is true in the internet legend, but the legend is wrong in making this a rule of thumb which it is not. You need an understanding of shadow contrast vs. midtone contrast vs. highlight contrast and understand how this relates to a particular subject.
And this is my experience also. It is an artistic choice simply giving shadows more weight in the exposure decision with almost no downside for most subject matter.