Film versus Pixels

Thread: Film versus Pixels

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 20
  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    4,285

    Film versus Pixels

    I often read that Film offers superior picture quality, depth, tone etc over digital pixel sensors. I am new to photography and so have no experience here. My question is: is it true - technically, demonstratively, unequivocally?

    Will a Leica M7 take better pictures than a Leica M9?
    Will a Nikon F2 take better pictures than a Nikon D3s?

    Certainly in the early days of lower pixel sensors, I read that picture quality got grainy at moderate ISO and could not easily be printed over A4. But with increased pixel count and several generations of technical improvements in DSLR sensors, is the image quality between Decent film and decent DSLR cameras really that noticeable?

    si
    "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose" Jim Elliot - Missionary, Martyr

  2. #2
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Almonte ON Canada
    Posts
    23,771

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon View Post
    I often read that Film offers superior picture quality, depth, tone etc over digital pixel sensors. I am new to photography and so have no experience here. My question is: is it true - technically, demonstratively, unequivocally?

    Will a Leica M7 take better pictures than a Leica M9?
    Will a Nikon F2 take better pictures than a Nikon D3s?

    Certainly in the early days of lower pixel sensors, I read that picture quality got grainy at moderate ISO and could not easily be printed over A4. But with increased pixel count and several generations of technical improvements in DSLR sensors, is the image quality between Decent film and decent DSLR cameras really that noticeable?

    si
    http://www.kenrockwell.com/olympus/trip-35.htm#perf

    http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/25-vs-5000-camera.htm

    http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/150-...lar-camera.htm


    http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/7.htm

    The best camera is the one you have with you at the time.
    Last edited by Ray MacDonald; May 28th, 2010 at 17:12.

    There are fathers who do not love their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson. ~ Victor Hugo

  3. #3
    Member Rick B's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    98

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Since I still use an M7, and a Rollei 6008i, I don't know if one could push/pull a digital capture like you can with a film capture.

    If it is straight up shooting, I would guess the results would be remarkably similar.

    This debate is like the one concerning Compact Disc's versus LPs!

  4. Remove Advertisements
    WatchUSeek.com
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Wales, the one with the dragon!
    Posts
    100

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick B View Post
    This debate is like the one concerning Compact Disc's versus LPs!
    No contest - LP's!

    To be honest, I think today you could shoot with either and be happy. It's a bit like arguing over second bests. The best image you can get of a scene is the one you get with your eyes. Having a flat 2 dimensional image is always going to be a distant second. What's the use of arguing over one that scores 34% and one that scores 37% - they are both a long way from 100%!

    For me, digital is all about convenience and seems to be measured in terms of sharpness and film is all about thoughtfulness and getting it right in camera and is measured in dimensionality. I do use both, but I use digital less and less and actually prefer to go out with a film camera and maybe take no photo's than go out with a digital and come back with 300! It is still possible to get it horribly wrong with film though!

    As to whether one camera will take a better picture than another, all other things being equal - yes, things not being equal - no. There is usually an element of luck involved, light is always critical. A better question would be: would one person take a better picture than the other? You might think that the one who takes the time to learn photography will overall take the better photo's but my experience has been that the person with no real interest but having the natural knack is the best photographer of all! Go figure!

  6. #5
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Almonte ON Canada
    Posts
    23,771

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Sometimes great skill and good luck converge and the result is legendary.

    http://www.anseladams.com/content/an...ancedotes.html

    There are fathers who do not love their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson. ~ Victor Hugo

  7. #6
    Member apeogre's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    830

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    The best camera is the one you have with you at the time.
    There are no better words.

    That being said, depends on what you're going to do with the camera. If you want to do huge prints a medium format digital or film is the way to go. If you want to just take nice snapshots then most any camera will do.

    Si, I know you were talking about a Leica in that Rolex post... I think if you want to have a status symbol camera, the Leica is the one to get. It takes great photos and is relatively compact.
    If you just want to take nice photos wherever you go, but still want a small portable interchangeable lens setup, check out the GF1. It's pretty tip top. Or if you don't know the first thing about ISO, shutter speed, aperture or lighting techniques, then buy a book or two and read those first.

    It seems like a shame to go out and spend a ton of money on a super nice camera (Leica M9 runs around $7000 without any glass) and not have any idea how to use it other than on automatic mode then complain that it doesn't take good photos.

  8. #7
    Member Rick B's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    98

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    Sometimes great skill and good luck converge and the result is legendary.

    http://www.anseladams.com/content/an...ancedotes.html
    Wasn't the Zone System developed because of Ansel Adams?


    All darkroom!

  9. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    9,059

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick B View Post
    Wasn't the Zone System developed because of Ansel Adams?


    All darkroom!
    Is there much difference between what you can do in a darkroom and using photoshop?

  10. #9
    Member Rick B's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    98

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean779 View Post
    Is there much difference between what you can do in a darkroom and using photoshop?
    Very similar! In a control light situation, shooting a color card, or a B/W zone card, you can adjust very quickly for color, or tonal corrections when shooting and scanning film.

    As far as digital, your raw images should start off with a balance exposure, so any manipulations are made easier.

  11. #10
    Member hydrocarbon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    1,846

    Re: Film versus Pixels

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon View Post
    My question is: is it true - technically, demonstratively, unequivocally?
    It isn't like entirely LP vs. CD, since CDs are measurably better. But good music on LP beats crap music on a CD any day, and I care much more about the music the equipment.

    Film vs. digital cameras? They're just different tools. It's sort of like asking whether a pen is "better" than a paint brush. It's irrelevant. Anyway, you seem like the type who should get a digital camera, so just get one and don't worry about it.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •