Opinion on Pbacks vs. film

Questions, comments and suggestions regarding Phase One P+ series and P series digital camera backs.

Opinion on Pbacks vs. film

Postby spacemagnet » Mon Aug 22, 2005 7:55 pm

I am new here and looking for opinions or general info regarding the switch from 120 film to a P series back. First of all I shoot RZ with NPH 400 or NPZ 800 and do alot of daylight. I shoot people/fashion: in strong backlight, and do a bunch of fairly long exposures, apx F8 1/4 sec. I am wondering if anyone has had any experience with similar shooting style with a P20 ro P25 back and how they like it. I am considering going with the H1 camera. I also do alot of strobe/daylight mix, usually at f16.5 400 of a sec, can the H1?p20-25 do this well? Any info would be helpful, just a general overall opinion of hardcore professional shooting with these backs. Thanks!
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Postby spacemagnet » Mon Aug 22, 2005 8:10 pm

Also wondering who is using the Contax 645 with any P back and how they like using that camera? Thanks.
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Postby Exi » Tue Aug 23, 2005 12:26 pm

been new as well here but can ensure u that it's a good team the Contax 645 with the P25.
The only downfall so far for me is the speed or capturerate of the P25.
Regards from munich
Last edited by Exi on Tue Aug 23, 2005 12:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby olo1 » Tue Aug 23, 2005 3:43 pm

there are always pros and cons... but in general I must say I do not regret switching to P25 from film after all and yes, I considered film unbeatable... :wink:

• workflow speed
• no more polaroids
• less rubbish
• instant decisions taken by me, or client wether we have got it or not
• no more lab work, but see cons!
• easiness of presentation
• less discussion with clients: do we really see those pastel tones in the backdrop? Where do you crop? etc...
• quality!!! :D

• shooting speed (for my taste it could be 2 frames/sec
• lab work, speak processing takes hours (of my time)
• storage problems: where the h*** to go with terabytes of datas :roll:

thats about it...

BTW I use H1 and P25

cheers Nicolas

PS: one thing I have to admit: film can be scanned in which ever final resolution you need, with P25 you are limited that you cannot crop endlessly. A work around is you shoot close ups, or croppings right away so the client does not need to crop afterwards, at least that is the way I do it...
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Postby spacemagnet » Tue Aug 23, 2005 5:03 pm

Thanks for the info. I do all my cropping in camera (old style) and my real main concern is can I keep my shooting style and the \"look\" of film close when I go digital. I make so many trips to lab now its going to be amazing to be all digital, between buying film, loading backs, shooting polaroids, testing film, cutting contacts, and getting scans done I spend way too much time in pre and post work. This may be the wrong place to ask but any thoughts on P series vs. Aputus? I sort of heard Aptus looks more like film? Also does anyone do strobe and daylight mixing with any digital setup, its seems many of the 645 cameras only flash sync at 125/sec, which would be very limiting in mixing full sun with strobe. (usually shoot at F16.5-22 at 400/sec Profoto 7b mixed with daylight) THANKS!
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Postby damienlovegrove » Tue Aug 23, 2005 8:16 pm

Hi and welcome,

I only seem to use the P25 at 400 ISO at the moment. I prefer it to NPH. I use it at 1/15th at f4 for my portrait work. I like the fact that I can shoot perfect tungsten without filters.

I use the H1 because:

It can shoot up to 1/500th with all lenses with flash.
The lenses focus fast and accurately in low light.
The lens quality is fantastic.
The screen is very bright.
Hasselblad support is first class and will be around for some time to come.
When the H2 comes out I will have all the glass to make the upgrade easy.

A Fuji rep (who shall remain nameless) saw one of my P25 images printed to 48\" x 36\" at a seminar and was telling a collegue how good film looked when printed big. He did not realise it was my image or shot on a P25. The collegue has now decided to go digital.
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Postby spacemagnet » Wed Aug 24, 2005 2:07 am

Ok just had my first sit down with Calumet to go over the pros and cons of Phase One (as well as Aptus) and wow are alot of good and bad points. I think the P25 is out of my price range at the moment since its 27K for back with 3year plan. So my options are as follows:

P21 back 19,900 3 yr (but stuck with P20 until it comes out)

P30 back 19,900 3 yr (but stuck with P20 until it comes out)

Aptus 17 18,995 1yr only offered

First of all the Leaf V10 software is horrific to look at, let alone get your head around. Whoever designed the \"look\" of it should go back to school and for sure does not use a Mac. I didnt actually use it, but I am sure after a week I could sort it out. The P1 Capture software is well designed and seems easy and intuitive for sure. So right there is a big plus for Phase. My real problem is being stuck with the P20 until whenever the P21/30 would get to me. In an ideal world(read rich$$$$) I would have a full frame back like the P25/P45, so having to work with the P20 right now is sort of going to be a bummer. Since I need to get a camera for the back its going to change what lenses I will use because of the smaller chip size. Is anyone using the P20 at the moment, and is the smaller chip size (hence focual length change) a real problem? Any more opinions would be great. Thanks
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contax 645 and p25 combination

Postby eleanorbrown » Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:50 pm

I have been using a contax 645 with the p25 since january. I love the combination. I use iso 50 and 100 mostly, but occasionally use iso 200 too. i have posted a lot of my contax/P25 images on my .net site if you are interested. I do a lot of landscape images. when i bought my back i had a difficult time finding samples of landscapes. i found mostly commercial, fashion and jewelry...that sort of stuff, which i have no interest in.
eleanor brown

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Postby spacemagnet » Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:58 pm

eleanor, thanks alot, your images look really nice. i however am in the opposite position, I am looking for portrait/beauty images shot in daylight/backlight. I will be testing the P1 this weekend so i guess I will know then. thanks!
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