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M8 / CCD - ISO 'limitations' try ASA 25 !
Old 07-17-2017   #1
dee
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M8 / CCD - ISO 'limitations' try ASA 25 !

I wonder if the limitations of a CCD sensor in respect of light levels is less concerning for those of us bought up with a 50mm lens and ASA 25/50 slide film - with ASA 200 being the later 'norm'.

O.K , I love the low light capabilities of a modern camera, and my new X-pro 1, but for 90% of my snap shooting , I am within the 125th/f8 scenario .

It was a similar thing with young people who expected a massive reach zoom , without regard to sensor size and max aperture .
It's amazing how they seem to have adapted to a 'fixed lens' camera !!

Just a thought ...

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Old 07-18-2017   #2
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These "limitations" are the invention of modern reviewers, who see just 10 megapixels and ASA/ISO 32 000 as a limitation.

It's a bit like living in a country where the speed limit is 50 mph and thinking the top speed of the new car of (say) 120mph is a limitation.

Back to cameras, years ago I realised that a Leica model II with the Summitar would cover most of my shots and yet...

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Old 07-18-2017   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Hughes View Post
These "limitations" are the invention of modern reviewers, who see just 10 megapixels and ASA/ISO 32 000 as a limitation.

It's a bit like living in a country where the speed limit is 50 mph and thinking the top speed of the new car of (say) 120mph is a limitation.

Back to cameras, years ago I realised that a Leica model II with the Summitar would cover most of my shots and yet...

Regards, David
I guess there's a first time for everything, for **once*** , David, I disagree with your comments! I definitely do not take the M8 with me on trips and when I expect to be shooting in the evening or later - because I know that the image quality will max out at 640 ISO (800 ISO equivalent) and render it "useless" (or far from optimal) from dusk onwards. Instead I take my Nikon Df instead, which makes ISO a non-issue. I would love to be able to take my film RF and lenses with a digital RF body that would let me shoot them without this limitation, but the only way I can stay with one system given my equipment is to take my bulky, but excellent, Nikon digital and film set up...
This is the primary reason I am lusting after an M10... but it is hard to justify the $$$$....
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Old 07-18-2017   #4
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You guys have it so easy. Only thing I have is 100 iso slide film. Doesn't matter how late it is. Inside a roman church this gives you like 2 seconds at f/8 if you're lucky. And when I'm back about 300 euro development costs.
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Old 07-18-2017   #5
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With regard to High ISO, of course we don't need it and yes, we've used slow speed film (maybe not ASA 25 for me, I think 50 was my lowest). However, it is nice to be able to shoot on the street handheld at dusk and night. People did this in the past by handholding very slow shutter speeds. Some great, great photos were made that way. But now we can handhold at a decent shutter speed and not have motion blur for moving objects. This allows for a different photo opportunity. It's not necessary, but it is nice to have. In the past, my night time photography was only tripod or flash based.
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Old 07-18-2017   #6
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Well, certainly not out to knock the amazing high iso ability of modern cameras but I still shoot daily with iso 100 and 400 film. I have yet to be wanting for more really. When the dark does its thing and settles in I either fire up the flash or put the camera away and become part of the scenery myself.
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Old 07-18-2017   #7
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I have tons of Kodachrome 2 slides _ASA 25

A Tiltall tripod or small bounced flash can help with the tough shots.

And they look as fresh today as when first made. Try that with color prints.
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Old 07-18-2017   #8
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I am always attaching ND filters to the M9. I routinely shoot 25 speed films, and often find 200 too fast for general use. This is summer of course. The grey days of New England winters demand 200 or 400 films.
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Old 07-18-2017   #9
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I think, ISO25 only era was limiting to very bright days and tripod if light was less. I can't say it is wrong. It is still natural photography. It looks natural. While everything after ISO1600 looks artificial, yet, here is only few people who actually gets what ISO 20000 taken images looks creepy. Quality of light on the picture only present if it was absorbed naturally, if light signal was amplified, it is not naturally looking picture.
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Old 07-18-2017   #10
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For 25 ASA/ISO the funny 16 rule suggests 1/25th second at f/16 or 1/2000th at f/2 and I see lots of room to adjust by a few stops and get the snap.

So not a limitation to this old fool and usually, if I can't see it I don't snap it...

But I wish there was a reasonably priced 100 ASA film.

Regards, David
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Old 07-18-2017   #11
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When I made my living with cameras, during the film era, I really had just three films I used for 99% of my work; K64 (which I preferred over K25 because of the extra stop and the slightly higher contrast) and Etkachrome 200 for color work, and TriX for all my black and white. On rare occasion I used Plus X for "less grainy" B&W results. So being able to hold a Leica at 1/12 wide open was possible when I was young and full of beans. My Nikon equipment (F, F2, F3) was heavier so I was very comfortable using tripods, monopods and flash when needed. I shoot my M9 a lot like my films days.
The Monochrome V1 I just got is a different story and I love its low light capabilities that allow an old timer like me to handhold in even lower light.
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Old 07-18-2017   #12
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My personal film of choice when the sun has settled is Ektar 100. It ticks the boxes I struggle with the most, such as colour. Good photography isn't easy but I definitely don't think the technical bit is the hardest. It's the same thing when trying to explain to someone why you prefer a prime lens when you could have a zoom lens. Being able to shoot a black cat in a coal mine at F8 and 1000th/sec isn't a game changer.
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Old 07-18-2017   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamin-b View Post
I guess there's a first time for everything, for **once*** , David, I disagree with your comments!
...
OK, I'll let you off this time ;-) and ask why not buy a flash?

The problem is, as I see it that these limitations don't really apply to the guy in the street but only to a few specialised bits of the full range of photography. My comment was - I hoped - to reassure people that they don't need to equip themselves as though they were producing billboards advertising dim lit night clubs but that seems to be the target photographer in a lot of reviews I've read.

Regards, David
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Old 07-18-2017   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Hughes View Post
For 25 ASA/ISO the funny 16 rule suggests 1/25th second at f/16 or 1/2000th at f/2 and I see lots of room to adjust by a few stops and get the snap.

So not a limitation to this old fool and usually, if I can't see it I don't snap it...

But I wish there was a reasonably priced 100 ASA film.

Regards, David
How many lenses it was with f2 and how many cameras it was with 1/2000 during ASA25 films era? It was more like f3.5 and up to 1/500 maximum, it seem from here and now.

I don't think it is price, but politics and user willingness. In USA the bulk of Kentmere 100 still costs 39USD.
Kentmere 100 is great ISO100 film, BTW. And using bulk film is smart. Or for smart .
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Old 07-18-2017   #15
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Actually, I would love to have an ISO 25 digital sensor with excellent (ie colour-negative-like) dynamic range.

I do not care very much for high-ISO in modern digital cameras - it is low ISO noise and dynamic range that I find limiting. The only work-around for this is to take multiple exposures and average these digitally - something which is difficult with the low shutter rate of the Leica M cameras.
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Old 07-18-2017   #16
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Hi,

I'd forgotten Kentmere, thanks.

The 25ASA era it lasted to a few years ago although I expect the factory stopped making it earlier.

As for lenses, well, f/2 and a 2000th is the same as f/4 and a 500th so still room to manoeuvrer a little for most people and a bounce flash helps keep life simple.

Regards, David
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Old 07-18-2017   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
I think, ISO25 only era was limiting to very bright days and tripod if light was less. I can't say it is wrong. It is still natural photography. It looks natural. While everything after ISO1600 looks artificial, yet, here is only few people who actually gets what ISO 20000 taken images looks creepy. Quality of light on the picture only present if it was absorbed naturally, if light signal was amplified, it is not naturally looking picture.
But this is informed by the limitations of past equipment. Color wasn't right in photography because B&W was first. High ISO isn't right in photography because low ISO was first. If there had been high ISO film right from the start, then it would be natural.

However, I do get what you are saying... making a night photo look like daytime isn't my type of photography either. But you can make a ISO 20000 photo of night that looks like night. It'll just be one with depth of field and no motion shake. Let's face it, low light available light photos look different than flash photography.
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Old 07-18-2017   #18
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I still shoot mainly ISO 100 slide film.

When I got my first serious 35mm camera in 1972, I used a lot of Agfachrome CT 18 (DIN 18 = ASA 50) and Kodachrome X (ASA 64). I also occasionally used GAF 64 (lovely for fall colors), Ektachrome X (ASA 64; tended to go blue in the shadows), and Kodachrome II (ASA 25). I never really felt limited by film speed; I just accepted it.

High Speed Ektachrome was ASA 160 at that time. GAF came out with a very grainy, but unbelievably fast, ASA 500 slide film shortly thereafter.

Amazing to think that Kodachrome was ASA 10 or 12 until Kodachrome II came out, and it was one of the main trailblazers for color photography.

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Old 07-18-2017   #19
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All you folks have it easy. My latest projects have been using Washi 120 film which has a real ISO (for me) of 3. ISO 25 is three stops faster!

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Old 07-19-2017   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsrockit View Post
But this is informed by the limitations of past equipment. Color wasn't right in photography because B&W was first. High ISO isn't right in photography because low ISO was first. If there had been high ISO film right from the start, then it would be natural.

However, I do get what you are saying... making a night photo look like daytime isn't my type of photography either. But you can make a ISO 20000 photo of night that looks like night. It'll just be one with depth of field and no motion shake. Let's face it, low light available light photos look different than flash photography.

I never feel what color was not right. But I'm not mass cliche person from the past.

It is impossible to make high ISO film. Those which have box speed claimed to be 1600 and 3200 gives so-so results. You need amplifier like process to get higher ISO (analog or digital).

I agree, in theory, it is possible to make more less naturally looking night scene with amplified (pushed by the sensor) ISO 20000. The problem with modern camera crowd is to find one who has taste to do it.

Actually, flash is not so bad for low light in capable hands and if not so many reflective surfaces are around


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Old 07-19-2017   #21
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Quote:
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Actually, I would love to have an ISO 25 digital sensor with excellent (ie colour-negative-like) dynamic range.

I do not care very much for high-ISO in modern digital cameras - it is low ISO noise and dynamic range that I find limiting. The only work-around for this is to take multiple exposures and average these digitally - something which is difficult with the low shutter rate of the Leica M cameras.
For digital imaging very low ISOs (25) are a challenge. The pinned photo-diode electrical charge density (electrons per unit area) must be very high. Few commercial options exist.

A base, or native, ISO of 100 is available for many digital cameras.

I don't think "low ISO noise" is a thing. If we assume maximum sensor exposure, at base ISO the electronic noise is very low. The photon (quantum or shot) noise is also as low as possible.

As ISO increases the meter tells us to decrease exposure. The decreased exposure is purposeful. It becomes possible to use shorter shutter times and, or narrower apertures. But compared to base (native) ISO, exposure decreases. So, the analog DC signals from the sensor are amplified to make full use of the analog-to-difital converter. The best data stream technologies add almost no electronic noise due to analog signal amplification. However the photon noise increases because less light is recorded. In contemporary digital camera images photon noise is much higher than electronic noise. Photon noise is beyond human control since it an inherent property of light.

The maximum analog dynamic range when the shutter is open depends directly on the signal-to-noise ratio – which depend on exposure. The analog dynamic is always highest at base ISO. A sensor with a 25 base ISO would have very high dynamic range because the maximum possible signal level would be four times higher than a camera with a base ISO of 100. This link compared measured dynamic ranges for the Nikon D810 and some Leica M bodies. The D810 has a base ISO of 64. Note how the dynamic range becomes similar for all three cameras by ISO 200. Also, the decrease in dynamic range as ISO increases is almost identical as well.

Here's a comparison of the electronic noise (no signal present) vs ISO for the same cameras. The electronic noise does not decrease as ISO is lowered below the native ISO. The M10 noise level at ISO 100 is barely higher than the D810's at ISO 64. However the signal levels would be different. The increase in signal levels is responsible for the higher dynamic range at base ISOs 64, 100 and 200 for the D810, M10 and M240 respectively.

Practically all digital cameras offer ISO settings below base ISO. These are artificial values achieved by setting exposure above the metered value and then decreasing the raw file numbers by digital division. These lower ISO settings are a convenience to avoid ND filters. The noise vs ISO data above shows for contemporary cameras electronic noise levels do not increase at artificially lower ISOs .
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Old 07-19-2017   #22
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Originally Posted by Fjäll View Post
My personal film of choice when the sun has settled is Ektar 100. It ticks the boxes I struggle with the most, such as colour. Good photography isn't easy but I definitely don't think the technical bit is the hardest. It's the same thing when trying to explain to someone why you prefer a prime lens when you could have a zoom lens. Being able to shoot a black cat in a coal mine at F8 and 1000th/sec isn't a game changer.
Never tried 100, but Ektar 25 sold before 1985 was OUTSTANDING.

No grain at 16x20. sharp as you could want.
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Old 07-19-2017   #23
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Hi,

I wish you hadn't mentioned Agfa's CT18 (sobs)...

Regards, David
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Old 07-21-2017   #24
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But this is informed by the limitations of past equipment. Color wasn't right in photography because B&W was first. High ISO isn't right in photography because low ISO was first. If there had been high ISO film right from the start, then it would be natural.

However, I do get what you are saying... making a night photo look like daytime isn't my type of photography either. But you can make a ISO 20000 photo of night that looks like night. It'll just be one with depth of field and no motion shake. Let's face it, low light available light photos look different than flash photography.
The real reason many zone system photographers preferred and did most of their serious work on B&W film was control. Drastic changes in development times (N+2,N+3 or N-2, N-3 etc) with color film and also what Adams called the reciprocity effect (reciprocity failure) which both can cause uncorrectable color shifts. Those changes in development times is the way you control the upper zones. With color film that was not an option so many of those zone system photographers, because of the lack of control, considered color a barbaric process.
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Old 07-21-2017   #25
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Ektar 25 120 was indeed sharp.
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Old 07-21-2017   #26
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I used for many years Fujichrome 50 as my standard everyday film, for 17mm-80mm lenses and the Fujichrome 100 as my "fast" film where I use a zoom lens.
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Old 07-21-2017   #27
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The real reason many zone system photographers preferred and did most of their serious work on B&W film was control. Drastic changes in development times (N+2,N+3 or N-2, N-3 etc) with color film and also what Adams called the reciprocity effect (reciprocity failure) which both can cause uncorrectable color shifts. Those changes in development times is the way you control the upper zones. With color film that was not an option so many of those zone system photographers, because of the lack of control, considered color a barbaric process.
Well, we are talking about two different things.
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Old 07-21-2017   #28
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Hi,

I wish you hadn't mentioned Agfa's CT18 (sobs)...

Regards, David
He knows what ORWO CHROME UT21 was better.

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Old 07-21-2017   #29
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Well, we are talking about two different things.
I was responding to the color wasn't right because B&W was first I was just saying it was really more than just that with many B&W photographers.
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