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Old 28th July 2020, 09:46 PM
John King John King is offline
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Default My Perception, real or not?

It has been my understanding for a long time that a med format negative exposed under similar circumstances would always give a better quality print than a 35mm one.

I have just made 2 12x16 prints from colour negatives. One from a colour negative using 120 format Fuji Superia 100 (It is about 10 years old) and another print the same size from Fuji C200 taken about 3 years ago. Both were printed using Rodagon APO lenses.

Both were from cameras sitting on a tripod. The 120 was a Bronica SQ with a prime 150mm PS lens. The other taken using a Nikon F6 and a Nikon 20/35AFD zoom.

The image quality is more or less the same on both although they are of completely different subjects, the Nikon one gives the impression of having just that bit more 'bite' or in other words sharpness.

The 120 negative does not have the same degree of grain that the 35mm one displays and I was wondering if it is my perception the extra grain (which is not all that obtrusive) is responsible for the apparent extra bite.
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Old 28th July 2020, 10:55 PM
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MartyNL MartyNL is offline
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I've certainly read somewhere that the smaller the film format the better the lens optics must be.

It seemed to make sense, so perhaps what you see is real and not just a matter of perception.
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Old 28th July 2020, 11:46 PM
Mike O'Pray Mike O'Pray is offline
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It might well be that with some 35mm lenses a print has to be bigger than 12 x 16 before MF has the edge

Herr Serger on Photrio has made the most spirited defence of the merits of the F6 and believes it to be the most sophisticated 35mm SLR ever made.

He may be right or at least right in it being the most developed and versatile 35mm film SLR ever made

Can it protect its lenses from cracking after a withering look from the mother-in-law? I doubt it but this is the same one who causes the mice to throw themselves on the traps when she comes round for Christmas

He may not have been politically correct but I still miss that man and his jokes


Mike
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Old 29th July 2020, 07:18 AM
Richard Gould Richard Gould is online now
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As I understand it, you will not see any real difference until the print gets over 12x16, I certainly can't find much if any difference on smaller prints, but when I printed large, (I'm talking 16x20 or larger) you could see a difference, certainly in black and white, but smaller the difference is very slight, mainly in the grain on the print
Richard
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Old 29th July 2020, 07:37 AM
alexmuir alexmuir is offline
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I tend to find in B&W that images with a visible, but uniform grain appear sharper than those with no obvious grain. I have always felt that colour photographs, generally of small size, seldom appear as sharp as an equivalent B&W print. Introducing some visible grain may alter that perception, as it does for me in B&W. I canít offer any scientific evidence, but that is the way I see things.
Alex.


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Old 29th July 2020, 07:39 AM
John King John King is offline
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Default Seen in the cold light of day

The impression is just the same as it was last night Richard. The saturation of both is better when seen in diffused sunlight but the impression is the same. I can see more edge fall off with the 150PS lens than I can with the Nikon AFD but that is all, but that may be down to the lens aperture used at the time which I cannot remember. (12x16) is the largest I can print and both of these were set for just over that so there was some cut off.)

I would love to put one of them in particular in a club competition because with this particular one there is a touch of rim light along a sharp edge that looks very much like 'over sharpening ' as if I had used photoshop. I have found with darkroom prints they would be bound to make a comment - Judges always get it wrong!

Mike I am assuming you are referring to the late Les Dawson. His facial expressions would crack me up never mind the mother in law jokes and by heaven he could belt out a tune or two on the piano as well!

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Old 29th July 2020, 07:52 AM
John King John King is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmuir View Post
I tend to find in B&W that images with a visible, but uniform grain appear sharper than those with no obvious grain. I have always felt that colour photographs, generally of small size, seldom appear as sharp as an equivalent B&W print. Introducing some visible grain may alter that perception, as it does for me in B&W. I can’t offer any scientific evidence, but that is the way I see things.
Alex.
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I will go along with that, which is why the sharpening effect of the original Rodinal was so very good. The grain itself was bitingly sharp and not recommended for films faster than 200ISO (ASA in those days) I have some FX39 which is 'supposed' to be Rodinal, but it came as a near clear liquid and after 3 years it is very much the same.
There are so many variations/names used for Rodinal now, the original formula was possibly unique, but today it is difficult to know which is the closest to the Agfa version.

Answers on a post card please.

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Old 29th July 2020, 08:07 AM
Lostlabours Lostlabours is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyNL View Post
I've certainly read somewhere that the smaller the film format the better the lens optics must be.

It seemed to make sense, so perhaps what you see is real and not just a matter of perception.
Ironically I can think of lenses used for two, three or even four formats.

Schneiders 360mm f5.5 Tele Xenar was sold in M42/Exacta mounts for 35mm, Pentacon P60 for 6x6 and then it can be used for 5x4 and 7x5.

However in this case comparing a 150mm lens on a Bronica to a WA zoom on a 35mm, first the 35mm lens has much greater DOF, but grain can also make an image look superficially sharper but contain less detail.

It's a chalk and cheese comparison but not surprising.

Ian
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Old 29th July 2020, 10:20 AM
Mike O'Pray Mike O'Pray is offline
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The only other comment on print size and 35mm lenses I would make is that with D3200 in 135 the grain can begin to show and detract from what I think of as sharpness at about 8x10. In that particular film and having used it in 120 as well on a P645N with what I think of as a near equivalent Pentax lens to what I had in my Pentax 35mm SLR, the difference appears at a much small size than 12 x16.
I never tried to print with a 135 D3200 neg not with a 120 either to be honest but I strongly suspect that in my case a 12x 16 print would be just too much for D3200 in 135 in terms of the look I'd want

Yes the very same Les, John

Mike
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Old 29th July 2020, 02:28 PM
Richard Gould Richard Gould is online now
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John, just to correct you in one thing, FX39 is not rodinal clone but a compensating/acutance developer, that was based on Willie Beutler's formula for Tetenal Neofin red, and was further developed by the Late Geoffrey Crawley,and I believe first sold by Paterson as Acutol, it is a compensating developer, I believe that Adox has further developed it for the T grain type filme such as Delta and T max,
Richard
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