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Born Loser
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      08-16-2004
Hello rec.photo.digital. members. I am a newbie and hope you can
help me. After many years of 35mm SLR experience as a hobbyist, I am
about to buy my first digital camera. Although I haven't ruled out one
of the current 8 MP models, at this time I have my eyes on the Olympus
765. Quite frankly, I am tired of lugging around five pounds of SLR,
lens, and flash around my neck. That's why a camera like the 765
appeals to me. However, after reading and surfin' numerous
publications and web sites, including (but certainly not limited to)
Pop Photo, Consumer Reports, dpreview.com, steves-digicams.com, I have
come to the following conclusion. This is where I hope you guys can
set me straight.

HYPOTHESIS: DIGITAL CAMERA'S DO NOT PERFORM AS WELL AS COMPRABLE 35mm
CAMERAS for the following reasons:

NOISE: Almost every camera review I've read discussed chromatic
abberations/purple fringing (especially in the current crop of 8
MP's), moire distortions (especially in DSLR's) and unacceptable noise
levels at ISO's above 100 in all but the most expensive DSLR's (you
need an awful lot of light to shoot below ISO 100) . Less than
accurate color reproduction creeps in every so often as well. Are
these distortions as serious and common in every shot as they sound?

PERFORMANCE: Again, almost every camera review I've read and all the
camera's I've checked-out at the local stores seem to have a
performance lag in terms of shutter speed, readiness for the next shot
and the screen/EVF blanking out for what seems like a long time (I'm
sure it really isn't). The speed with which photos can be taken with
digital seems considerably slower than 35mm.

RESOLUTION: I understand that one cannot make a direct comparison
between digital and 35mm cameras in terms of resolution. I have read
a source that did just that claiming that 35mm camera's (as a group)
have a 30 MP equivelant. Although the difference between 30 MP and 4,
5, or 8 MP's may not (due to mathematics and technology) literally
translate into 4, 6 or 8 times the resolution, the difference has to
count towards quality in some way.

QUESTION: So here is my question. How accurate are the above
observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.? What's the inside
scoop concerning the upcoming 7 MP cameras and, I assume, revised and
updated 8 MP's?

I thank you in advance for your assistance in this matter and hope to
post more once I get off the ground with digital
 
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Charlie Self
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      08-16-2004
Born Loser asks:

>
>HYPOTHESIS: DIGITAL CAMERA'S DO NOT PERFORM AS WELL AS COMPRABLE 35mm
>CAMERAS for the following reasons:


Your basic hypothesis is wrong. SOME digitals do perform as well as comparable
35mm cameras.

>NOISE: Almost every camera review I've read discussed chromatic
>abberations/purple fringing (especially in the current crop of 8
>MP's), moire distortions (especially in DSLR's) and unacceptable noise
>levels at ISO's above 100 in all but the most expensive DSLR's (you
>need an awful lot of light to shoot below ISO 100)


Depends. Noise levels are not necessarily unacceptable above 100 ISO...my
Pentax has a low ISO equiv. of 200, shoots cleanly at 400, and hasn't been
tried above that. But it's an SLR.

> Less than
>accurate color reproduction creeps in every so often as well. Are
>these distortions as serious and common in every shot as they sound?


No.

>Again, almost every camera review I've read and all the
>camera's I've checked-out at the local stores seem to have a
>performance lag in terms of shutter speed, readiness for the next shot
>and the screen/EVF blanking out for what seems like a long time (I'm
>sure it really isn't).


Yeah, every non-DSLR I've used seems to have some shutter lag, a lag that
almost seems to depend on camera cost. More expensive cameras have less lag.
EVFs do blank out for a long time--it doesn't just seem long, but, IMHO, after
going back to SLR viewfinders from several EVFs, EVFs in their current state
suck.

>The speed with which photos can be taken with
>digital seems considerably slower than 35mm.


With non-SLRs, yup.

>So here is my question. How accurate are the above
>observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
>the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
>that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
>in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
>camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
>to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
>or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
>distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.?


Yeah, you're wrong to believe that. Shoot at 200 and produce acceptable photos.
Shoot at 400 and find most acceptable.

And a lot depends on the non-SLR camera you select. You will be limited in
frames per minute, but you'll also have a long lens and a nearly wide lens and
a lot of good response and photography...check out some real photo sites for
proof.

Charlie Self
"Bore, n.: A person who talks when you wish him to listen." Ambrose Bierce, The
Devil's Dictionary
 
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Jim
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      08-16-2004

"Born Loser" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) om...
> Hello rec.photo.digital. members.
> QUESTION: So here is my question. How accurate are the above
> observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
> the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
> that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
> in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
> camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
> to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
> or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
> distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.? What's the inside
> scoop concerning the upcoming 7 MP cameras and, I assume, revised and
> updated 8 MP's?

The actual photos that I obtain with my Nikon D70 compare quite favorably
with those from my Nikon N90s. There is no difference in speed between the
two cameras. The minimum ISO for the D70 is 200.

As for printing, I seldom make prints smaller than 8x10. If there is a
difference between those made with the D70 and those made with the N90s, I
can't see it.

Perhaps those reviews were discussing the cameras which use the very small
sensors. From what little I have read, those cameras are afflicted with
sensor noise and less than satisfactory optics. I have only used a Nikon
Coopix 800 which is OK for prints about 4x6 or 5x7.
Jim


 
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RustY
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      08-16-2004

"Born Loser" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) om...
> HYPOTHESIS: DIGITAL CAMERA'S DO NOT PERFORM AS WELL AS COMPRABLE 35mm

CAMERAS for the following reasons:

My observations are............

NOISE: Is the same as Film I would say 400ASA Film is quite noisy but only
about the same as my DSLR set to 400ASA - Though if I'm set to 400 ASA it's
either persisting it down or about to start so the pics aren't too great
anyway.

PERFORMANCE: Again, is the same - though I only manage about 3 frames per
second on continuous.

RESOLUTION: - Just look at the prints - I doubt if you can spot the
difference between film and digi - and if you did you'd probably prefer the
digis.


 
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Big Bill
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Posts: n/a
 
      08-16-2004
On 16 Aug 2004 08:02:59 -0700, http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
(Born Loser) wrote:

>QUESTION: So here is my question. How accurate are the above
>observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
>the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
>that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
>in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
>camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
>to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
>or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
>distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.? What's the inside
>scoop concerning the upcoming 7 MP cameras and, I assume, revised and
>updated 8 MP's?



You seem to be comparing the current crop of point 'n shoot cameras
with the best 35mm cameras available. You shuldn't do that.
Instead, you should be comparing the current cameras with what you
want.
What is, exactly, 35mm quality? Is it what someone with $15,000
dollars of equipment gets, or what the neighbor with a 25 year old SLR
gets?
What do you want to do with the pics you take? Email them to your
friends/relatives? 7 - 8 MP is serious overkill.
Make oversized prints to hang in a gallery? You're wasting your time
looking at the current crop of point 'n shoots altogether.
There are few current digitals with a 3 second shot-to-shot time; it's
usually in the fraction of a second range, until the buffer is full.
You'll take that long to recompose the shot.

What I'm trying to say is that the only comparison that counts is the
one that compares the camera in question to your needs/wants.

Is digital ready for prime time? Obviously. Does it equal 35mm?
Which 35mm? Yours? Mine? His? 8x10? 4x6? The real answer is: does it
meet your needs/wants.

Bill Funk
Change "g" to "a"
 
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Arty Phacting
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-16-2004
Hi Born Loser

I can't be assed reading all this stuff and the other posts

If you prefer 35mm or medium format = hey fine with me dewd, live it up

FWIW I find I have to replace my socks far too frequently these days.

They were first blasted off when me an me m8s went mountain hinking

The one with a didgicam had results burned to CD and displayed on widescreen
TV using a DVD burner once we got back to base camp 1

I had my rolls of 35mm tucked up safely away somewhere

Blew socks off

I then bought my own compact digicam = Blew socks off

I then took up a 30-day free trial of Adobe Photoshop CS = Blew socks off

If any1 discovers some socks innocently blowing in the wind.

Please post a notice here - they may be mine

But it is a big worls and conversion I seek not - if you luv it dewd, do it
and be good at it

have phun

Arty

"Born Loser" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) om...
> Hello rec.photo.digital. members. I am a newbie and hope you can
> help me. After many years of 35mm SLR experience as a hobbyist, I am
> about to buy my first digital camera. Although I haven't ruled out one
> of the current 8 MP models, at this time I have my eyes on the Olympus
> 765. Quite frankly, I am tired of lugging around five pounds of SLR,
> lens, and flash around my neck. That's why a camera like the 765
> appeals to me. However, after reading and surfin' numerous
> publications and web sites, including (but certainly not limited to)
> Pop Photo, Consumer Reports, dpreview.com, steves-digicams.com, I have
> come to the following conclusion. This is where I hope you guys can
> set me straight.
>
> HYPOTHESIS: DIGITAL CAMERA'S DO NOT PERFORM AS WELL AS COMPRABLE 35mm
> CAMERAS for the following reasons:
>
> NOISE: Almost every camera review I've read discussed chromatic
> abberations/purple fringing (especially in the current crop of 8
> MP's), moire distortions (especially in DSLR's) and unacceptable noise
> levels at ISO's above 100 in all but the most expensive DSLR's (you
> need an awful lot of light to shoot below ISO 100) . Less than
> accurate color reproduction creeps in every so often as well. Are
> these distortions as serious and common in every shot as they sound?
>
> PERFORMANCE: Again, almost every camera review I've read and all the
> camera's I've checked-out at the local stores seem to have a
> performance lag in terms of shutter speed, readiness for the next shot
> and the screen/EVF blanking out for what seems like a long time (I'm
> sure it really isn't). The speed with which photos can be taken with
> digital seems considerably slower than 35mm.
>
> RESOLUTION: I understand that one cannot make a direct comparison
> between digital and 35mm cameras in terms of resolution. I have read
> a source that did just that claiming that 35mm camera's (as a group)
> have a 30 MP equivelant. Although the difference between 30 MP and 4,
> 5, or 8 MP's may not (due to mathematics and technology) literally
> translate into 4, 6 or 8 times the resolution, the difference has to
> count towards quality in some way.
>
> QUESTION: So here is my question. How accurate are the above
> observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
> the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
> that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
> in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
> camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
> to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
> or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
> distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.? What's the inside
> scoop concerning the upcoming 7 MP cameras and, I assume, revised and
> updated 8 MP's?
>
> I thank you in advance for your assistance in this matter and hope to
> post more once I get off the ground with digital



 
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Ken Scharf
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-16-2004
I have found that the prints made from my Olympus D590Z, even
at 8x10 (though I usually print these at 4X5, or two to a
sheet of paper) are as good as what I remember getting from
my Nikon FA using 200-400 ASA print film.

I now have an Olympus C5050, havn't used it enough to make
any comments, but this camera should be much improved over
the older P&S model!

Note that I'm NOT a professional photographer, just a hobby
user who takes his camera on trips with the family like
everyone else. Clearly digital cameras are now good enough
to replace 110 and 35mm point and shoot cameras, and low
end 35mm SLR's. As for pro 35mm cameras, they are (or
will soon be) and indangered species as digicams get better.

I doubt that medium format and plate film view cameras will
EVER be replaced by digital, but these have always been
the field of a very few professional (and dedicated!) group.
 
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Alan Meyer
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      08-16-2004
"Born Loser" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) om...

> NOISE:


You can push film further than digital, but also at the
cost of much noise. Chromatic aberration is said to
be worse with digital - but it varies from camera to camera
and over the range of focal lengths. I rarely notice any with
my Canon S30 with 3:1 zoom. My guess is that most
quality digitals will produce images that look as good as
film unless a) shooting conditions are extreme, or b)
blowups are extreme.

> PERFORMANCE:


There are four numbers of interest:

1. Time between camera on and camera ready.

The cameras typically store the lens in a compressed
position that has to be opened. The longer the lens, the
longer this takes. Long lens cameras can take 5 seconds.
Short lens cameras can take 2-3 seconds. Fixed lens
cameras can be very quick.

2. Time to focus and set exposure.

One second more or less, is not uncommon. Auto-
everything film cameras have a similar lag.

3. Time to take the shot after setting exposure.

Typically, you can press the button half way down to
get focus and exposure set. Then watch and, at the
right moment, press the rest of the way. The lag
there is often in the range of 0.1 to 0.3 seconds. Some
are faster. 0.1 or 0.2 aren't bad, even for action shots,
but film cameras are faster.

4. Time between shots.

The camera has to digitize the image and write it to
the memory card. 2 seconds or so is not uncommon.

Some cameras have a burst mode that allows you to
accelerate this for short bursts, e.g., 5 shots in two
seconds.

For real high speed action photography, film has
a decided advantage. For other cases, the photographer
can generally do pretty well with digital by thinking out
what he has to do.

> RESOLUTION:


Except in expensive pro quality cameras, the light
sensors have a smaller area than the film size of a 35mm
camera. Therefore, for a given resolution in lines/mm,
I would think the actual sharpness would have to be
less in digital. However there are other factors limiting
resolution, including the number of lines/mm that the
film and/or the digital sensor will resolve.

In practice you'd have to look at the images
to see if the difference is perceptible to you. To my
eye, digital images look very sharp.

Note that, if resolution is critical, perfectionists will also
stay away from 35mm, using larger film sizes instead.

As for the 30MP equivalent of 35mm film, I find that
very hard to believe. I saw a photo in Pop Photo from
an 8mp camera that was clearly sharper than one taken on
35 mm film.

CONCLUSIONS:

You have listed all of the perceived disadvantages of
digital as compared to film. I think some of them are
real - though whether they are significant to you depends
on what you shoot and what appeals to you.

But you also need to consider the advantages of digital
as compared to film. These include:

No more film cost.
No developing cost.
No darkroom time and cost.
Instant feedback on the LCD display of what your
shot looks like. If you have a laptop with you,
for example on a trip, you can see your images
on the large screen each night instead of waiting
until you get home and get them developed.
No film loading in the field. A 256 MB card can
take 280 or so 3 MP images before it has to be
dumped out to a computer.
No degradation of image quality over time (so long
as you keep backing up your files.)
No more physical boxes of negatives, contact sheets,
or prints. A single 160 GB hard disk can store
160,000 1 MB digital images. A single CD can
store 700 of them.
Easy distribution.
Post shot editing that goes miles beyond what anyone
can do with film, and is orders of magnitude easier to
do.

When I was shooting film, I was very careful about not
wasting film on shots that I wasn't sure would "come out"
right. Now I shoot anything I want, whenever I want,
knowing it doesn't cost me a penny.

I suspect that, if you get a digital camera, you'll like it.

Alan


 
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ECM
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Posts: n/a
 
      08-16-2004
(E-Mail Removed) (Born Loser) wrote in message news:<(E-Mail Removed). com>...
> Hello rec.photo.digital. members. I am a newbie and hope you can
> help me. After many years of 35mm SLR experience as a hobbyist, I am
> about to buy my first digital camera. Although I haven't ruled out one
> of the current 8 MP models, at this time I have my eyes on the Olympus
> 765. Quite frankly, I am tired of lugging around five pounds of SLR,
> lens, and flash around my neck. That's why a camera like the 765


>***SNIP***


> QUESTION: So here is my question. How accurate are the above
> observations? The reviews I've read often rate the camera highly but
> the above problems always seem to creep into the review. This suggests
> that the current crop of digitals are continously getting better, but
> in some respects, are still not completely there. If I buy a digital
> camera (other other than a DSLR) how are my pictures going to stand-up
> to 35mm? Am I wrong to believe that I will be limited to ISO's of 100
> or below, one frame every three or five seconds, observable
> distortions even in 4x6 and 8x10 prints, etc.? What's the inside
> scoop concerning the upcoming 7 MP cameras and, I assume, revised and
> updated 8 MP's?
>
> I thank you in advance for your assistance in this matter and hope to
> post more once I get off the ground with digital


I was a dedicated SLR owner up until about 5 weeks ago... I'm now a
convert because of the freedom I feel I get from my digital - an
Olympus C-5060. I snap away like a fool with the digital, but I can't
afford to be too snap-happy with the SLR - too expensive. The result
is I'm getting some truly fantastic pictures that I was missing
before; I was not confident (or rich!) enough to take a picture I
thought "might" work - I was way too conservative. Now with 100,000
use cycles per flash card - I'm FREE!

Shaggy Dog story:

I still own a Nikon FM-20 from the 70's; it works well. Recently I
compared the pictures from it to what I was getting on my new Oly
C-5060WZ; I went on a weekend camping trip in Idaho.

With the Nikon, I used Fuji Reala at 100 ISO and Kodak Royal Gold at
200 ISO. The lens is the original Nikkor; an awesome lens. I own a
good Sigma 70-300mm zoom also; it's a bit worse for wear, though.
Replacing it would cost only a little less than what I spent for my
Oly C-5060....

The Oly C-5060 was used at ISO 80, full automatic (aperture, speed,
auto-flash, autofocus). The pictures were stored at super-HQ jpg
(compressed about 2-3:1). I used an old Minolta external flash with a
large diffuser for fill-in with both cameras.

I took a day of photos with the SLR, then a day with the digital. I
took a total of 52 pics with the SLR (2 complete rolls), but 119 with
the Oly - several times I took 2-3 shots of the same thing with a bit
of exposure adjustment applied, or the same subject with and without
flash.

I developed the film at a good local shop, printed on 4X6 Fuji paper.
Cost US$19, plus US$6 to put the photos on a disk (at 1024X756). Took
2 days. Add $7 for the two rolls of film - $32 total. Of these 52
photos, ~20 were good pictures, the rest were the usual crap - out of
focus, subjects (kids) moving too fast, misjudged the exposure
correction, etc.

I selected about 20 of the best images from the Oly's output, adjusted
color/contrast/redeye, cropped a few down, etc; burned them to a CD-R
(~$0.10) all in a matter of 1 hour. I took them to Walmart for
printing on 4X6 Fuji paper - US$3.70 (ie. $0.17 each); done in 1/2
hour. $4 total.

I showed the results to friends/family; I know, not scientific - but
the point is, what LOOKED better. Universally, the Oly's output was
chosen as the best. Clear, sharp, colors BETTER than Fuji Reala (! -
arguably the best color film you'll find unless you go to a
professional shop). The subject matter was also much more interesting
with the Oly - the SLR is a manual focus; I'm fast on the focus ring,
but not as fast as your typical 4-year-old, and I missed a bunch of
good shots. I suppose a good autofocus SLR would have caught a few
more, but I've tried a Minolta AF SLR in the past, and I was
underwhelmed by the focus speed and accuracy.

I didn't blow any of these photos up, but I have in the past - I saw
NO jaggies, etc. except when I blew one up to the equivalent of about
24"x30" (ie. a small 1/3 frame crop blown up to 8"x10"), but 11"X17"
was fine. Not so with my 35 mm output - a definite graininess is
apparent even with ISO 100 film at 11"X17". Before I basically "gave
up" and went digital I was watching the internet for a medium format
(6X4) camera!

My point?... go for it! digital is FREEDOM! They've really come a long
way from the crap of 5 years ago.... The only thing I really miss is
the fast, beautiful lens I have on the Nikon SLR - f1.4-22 compared to
f4.8-8 on the Olympus. Couple a "slow" lens like that with an ISO of
80 - and yes, I use fill flash a lot. You might want to look around
for a faster lens if this is really important to you.

Budget for a 5 to 8MP compact digital camera (like the Olympus C-5060
or 8080, the Canon G5, Nikon 5700 or 8700, etc.) and pay attention to
the reviews. Unless you've been working in a studio you'll get as good
or better pictures. And you won't feel a twinge in the ol' pocketbook
every time you push the shutter release!

Peace! And good luck!
ECM

PS: Sorry about the long post, but I thought it might help....
 
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Arty Phacting
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Posts: n/a
 
      08-17-2004
Hi Ken

I am a mere novice in photography be it medium format, 35mm or digital

I understood that in medium format there are bellows lenses which are quite
handy for study work - are they expensive items?

Thanks in advance

Arty



"Ken Scharf" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
newsQaUc.140$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I have found that the prints made from my Olympus D590Z, even
> at 8x10 (though I usually print these at 4X5, or two to a
> sheet of paper) are as good as what I remember getting from
> my Nikon FA using 200-400 ASA print film.
>
> I now have an Olympus C5050, havn't used it enough to make
> any comments, but this camera should be much improved over
> the older P&S model!
>
> Note that I'm NOT a professional photographer, just a hobby
> user who takes his camera on trips with the family like
> everyone else. Clearly digital cameras are now good enough
> to replace 110 and 35mm point and shoot cameras, and low
> end 35mm SLR's. As for pro 35mm cameras, they are (or
> will soon be) and indangered species as digicams get better.
>
> I doubt that medium format and plate film view cameras will
> EVER be replaced by digital, but these have always been
> the field of a very few professional (and dedicated!) group.



 
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