Joseph S Wisniewski

Joseph S Wisniewski

Lives in United States Detroit, MI, United States
Works as a Speech and sensor scientist
Has a website at http://www.swissarmyfork.com
Joined on Jul 12, 2002
About me:

I've been in love with photography for over 40 years.

My favorite form of photography is macro, and much of my gear is of my own design.

I've done professional photography on and off for over 20 years.
Taught 8 years at Midwest Photography Workshops.
Designed 3 scientific digital cameras and 6 lenses.

Author of mImage and (coming soon to the App Store and Google Play) ColorForEveryone.

Comments

Total: 558, showing: 341 – 360
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In reply to:

LaFonte: Ok rhetoric aside, one thing I don't understand, why there is actually a higher duty tax for video cameras? What is the purpose of this?

It comes from taxing "home video recorders" to make up for the money that movie companies are "losing" from people recording movies off broadcast or cable, or copying video tapes or DVDs. There's only two things wrong with that logic...

1) There is no meaningful way to use a DSLR, P&S camera, camera phone, or even a modern camcorder to pirate movies.

2) Study after study proves that the movie companies are not suffering losses due to end-user piracy, which is a lot different from distribution channel piracy.

Direct link | Posted on May 19, 2012 at 15:54 UTC

There are several cameras that seamlessly start new files every time a 4 gig file fills. That "concern" is a non-issue.

There really aren't any concerns about cameras overheating, either. Build it for liveview, and the heat producing display and processor pretty much run full time anyway.

Direct link | Posted on May 19, 2012 at 15:50 UTC as 24th comment | 9 replies
In reply to:

Kodachrome200: I honestly dont know why anyone defends leica. there two latest inventions are an $8000 dollar camera body that can only take black and white pictures with lacklustre technology and 50mm f/2 prime lens that also cost $8000. You can buy them both for the cost the finest camera in the world and a selection of the finest lenses that would make most pros jealous and most any other photographic tools you could want and you could still probably throw in a reliable used car. Of course then you wouldnt have a camera that only took black and white pictures and 1 50mm prime lens.

the absolutely maddening thing is a bunch of people are gonna respond with how crappy traditional dslrs are and how it is absolutely worth it to forgo that dreamlist of gear in order to have this

Well, I hate to be a "censor", Mr. Kodachrome, but it is you that is delivering the nonsense.

The "sensor" is probably the most expensive FF "sensor" on the market. It's produced by a sensor operation that never learned how to supply large sensors to anyone other than aerospace customers.

Direct link | Posted on May 18, 2012 at 17:15 UTC
In reply to:

REDred Photo: It's interesting to me that we now consider any camera with fewer features to be "crippled and downgraded." We all seem to be in search of that ONE magic camera that does everything with 30+mp and incredibly sharp lenses, infinite battery life, stellar signal to noise ratio at ISO 50K, plus everything else you ever dreamed of having in a camera... and we want it to fit in a pocket and cost under $3k.

This simply doesn't exist. As such, cameras must be made to focus on doing some of these things, or even one of these things, really well. To say that a camera that is designed to do something entirely different is "crippled and downgraded" because it lacks some of the features of another less expensive camera is missing the point. This is a camera designed for a very specific purpose.

@maxnoy, no, you look. The S2 and 645D are medium format cameras, and have arguably the best medium format sensors available. The M9 is a full frame camera, and it has a sensor that is markedly inferior to those of pretty much any other full frame camera, from D800 down. It could still be a "top-tier lens", "package that practically fits in your coat pocket" camera if it had a better sensor. So, in its own niche, it is crippled by the lack of a sensor as good as competing cameras use.

@BobYIL, thanks. That puts the M9m in the same boat as a lot of 24mp APS cameras, including some even more pocketable than M9.

Direct link | Posted on May 18, 2012 at 17:13 UTC
In reply to:

Element42: I am probably not enlightened yet so excuse my beginner's question:
aside from a Leica being a great quality camera what is the point of a B&W sensor? Would I not be off eqaully well by taking color RAW shots and then use great tools like Silver Efex able to do everything I would ever want on the B&W front?
(I understand why B&W RAW is better than B&W JPG :-))

I fail to see how the example shots "show the possibilities of the camera". Could you please explain that to me.

"there's a difference between great and a good example"

That is true, but irrelevant, as the examples posted are not "great", "good", or even "fair".

Direct link | Posted on May 18, 2012 at 17:04 UTC
In reply to:

King Penguin: Nice cam but I think I'll wait for the D600, apparently its gonna be FX and a lot cheaper..... :)

"however nikonrumors.com suggests that it will not have a built in AF motor,"

Right. Because one of the arguments most often brought up in favor of a "low cost full frame" is the enormous assortment of "film days" lenses.

Nikon Rumors has a severe RCI problem.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 15:10 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

liptonius: I am not impressed.
My GF1 brings me just as good pictures with my Nikon 35 F-.1.4 lens.

@Andy, you just nailed the biggest problem with the M9m...

"The only other sensor that can give you that sort of sharpness is the new Foevon or a very high res (24mp+) sensor downsized."

Had they launched the dang thing two years ago, when the 24mp+ choices were very limited, the M9m would have been a game changer. But it's 2012, and 24mp+ sensors are everywhere. Nikon has probably already shipped more D800 in the last three months (despite how scarce they are, by Nikon shooter standards) than Leica has shipped M8 and M9 in five years. How many APS SLRs are currently in the field with the 24mp Sony? A million? Two million?

Nokia put a 40mp sensor, with only downsized output available, in a phone.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 14:03 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

dbo: Leica is is also kind of philosophy.

People nagging and complaining about those masterpieces are just prooving enviousness. Either because they can't effort a Leica or just because they're too poor in skill to apprehend what its made for.

For those who desire to own a Leica, and are short of money - well then, Leica have some bridge and compact cameras in their line-up. But be warned, they're expensive, too.

"before you start writing off people, better you learn some spelling."

That is an interesting statement, from a man who seems incapable of proper capitalization, and who writes mostly in sentence fragments.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:54 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

Paulo Sanches Goncalves: I respect the aggressiveness and creativity of Asian manufacturers, but only one European company with a great tradition of the photo black and white could launch a camera like this.
Since the beginning of digital photography, knowing the number of lovers of flimes BW, I always wondered how a camera that would photograph only in BW.
Well Leica gave us this gift, now we shoot like we want: black-and-white.
I'll wait for the messages of our colleagues, because this camera will take a while to arrive in Brazil.
It is very expensive!
My friend, passion is priceless.
Be creative, work and earn money to live your pleasure
Long life for BW

Only a what?

You don't think that Nikon, with their S rangefinders, has the "tradition"? Or Canon? Or Fuji, who made some of the finest B&W films ever?

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:44 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

pedromeyer: what do you get, when you put a reborn Leica Co after going bankrupt, together with an almost defunct Kodak company making their sensors, well, the niche products that have very poor after sale service, cameras that are about two years behind the market curve in developments, etc.

In the analog era, the investment in R&D by Leica was quite limited, after all in 50 years basically nothing much was ever changed. THen came the digital era, and they were left in the dust, not understanding exactly what had hit them. Their product line, late on any measure in the development curve vs the market.

Last I heard from their own employees, was that they were so strapped for cash they could not invest in having a modicum of inventory to supply dealers in a timely manner, let alone all the developments needed in R&D.

Kodak also was a great name, even one of the early developers of digital cameras, but what they did not have was an idea of what to do with it all.

Wow, hatred wrapped in misconceptions or lies. I'll assume simple lack of information, rather than outright malice.

First, Leica didn't go bankrupt.

Second, Leica buys sensors through whoever builds their electronics. The X1 and X2 electronics were built by a company that uses Sony sensors, as is, from my best sources, the M10. The M9 and S2 electronics were designed by Phase One using Kodak sensors.

That sensor operation was sold last year to Platinum Equity, for a fair price (not a "fire sale" or liquidation of assets, like Mamiya and Leaf) is now operating as "Turesense", and their fate isn't tied to Kodak.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:41 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

shaocaholica: It seems like the limitations of highlight clipping for a sensor without a color filter array could be solved by something like the Fuji EXR system where there's are 2 sets of photosites where one set is highly sensitive for shadows and the other set is less sensitive for highlights. Not sure how much resolution you'd lose with this approach but it would be cool to have the extra DR.

@shaocaholica, you're exactly right, except it's not the EXR you want, it's the older sensor, the SR II. That's the one that masked every other cell with a "pinhole" aperture.

As a color sensor, it was quirky, at best, but operated as monochrome, the images were stunning. Either processed with the mImage local monochrome algorithm or filtered to monochrome 900nm IR.

I was actually working with Fuji to market "Bayer-less" versions when Fuji pulled the plug on their DSLR program. Now, that sensor is literally "gone".

@victor, no color artifacts in a monochrome SR. Surprisingly few sampling artifacts, either. The only time you were running on just the big S (or "shadow") pixels, was in deep shadows, and the only time you're running on just the small R pixels is in highlights. Most of the image gives you usable data in both the S and R pixels, so for midtones, the camera is just an "ordinary" monochrome digital.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:34 UTC
On Leica M-Monochrom preview (451 comments in total)
In reply to:

jmmgarza: What, no night pix at ISO 3,200.

I agree, that's an odd omission. Grainy, fast-lens low-light shots are a Leica trademark for decades. Theater shots, jazz musician in a smoky club, etc. etc. etc.

Ideally with fake Kodak 2475 grain. At least a pushed Tri-X look.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:19 UTC
In reply to:

Element42: I am probably not enlightened yet so excuse my beginner's question:
aside from a Leica being a great quality camera what is the point of a B&W sensor? Would I not be off eqaully well by taking color RAW shots and then use great tools like Silver Efex able to do everything I would ever want on the B&W front?
(I understand why B&W RAW is better than B&W JPG :-))

@jmmgarza. why do you keep saying that? Most of the M9m samples, and all of the dpReview ones, show a horrible lack of understanding of B&W photography and of the limits of a B&W digital camera. I haven't seen many shots from it that even aspire to "average", let alone "great".

I'm sure that's the fault of the people shooting it.

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:14 UTC
In reply to:

jmmgarza: Leica lenses are great and their cameras timeless. The photos look fabulous. Some may want to whine about this... but it is the truth. Again... the photos look GREAT!

You have actually seen a "great" photo, at least once, somewhere in the world, haven't you?

So far, everything I've seen from M9m doesn't get beyond "average".

Direct link | Posted on May 17, 2012 at 13:12 UTC
In reply to:

Roland Karlsson: I will say it once again. The only really interesting point is if good photographers gets this unique camera and makes outstanding photographs. Thats it really. If this camera only is bought by rich people that cannot make images, then its no fun at all.

The big drawback of this B&W camera, compared to film, is DR. Some B&W films had unbelieving DR. For color images, huge DR is hard to utilize as the images become strange if you do too much HDR work. But for B&W, there is nothing called too much. Its total freedom when doing manipulation.

I'm not sure who's confused about what. "Dynamic range should be significantly higher than that."

Higher than what?

Dynamic range on a monochrome sensor is significantly lower than on a color filter array sensor. I have shot six different monochrome cameras (Kodak DCS-630m, Nikon D100 converted to monochrome, Nikon D90 converted to monochrome, Megavision (I forget the model, 36x48mm sensor), and two industrial cameras with Kodak and Fill Factory sensors). In all cases, dynamic range is less than you're used to with color cameras from the same eras.

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 17:44 UTC
In reply to:

kiralymd: LEICA!
You're CHEATING on US and your OWN! Loosing photographic heritage, engineering knowledge and proud. ( M-Monochrom for $7,950?! )
Does EVERYTHING need to be: FOR SALE?!
Even if you have the (financial, engineering etc.) potential to create something truly valuable?
What is happening to our once beloved World?! There are people suffering OUT THERE! Does the word ARROGANCE ring a bell?
LEICA! GOOD LUCK FOR SELLING THESE PRODUCTS! I'M SURE YOU WILL

If you drink, don't post.

If you post, don't drink.

Remember, electricity and alcohol don't mix.

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 14:12 UTC
In reply to:

Artistico: Now, to get the best possible photos from this, one can just take three photos, one each with a green, red and blue filter and combine into a colour photo which can then be turned into a black and white photo again with a proper channel mix. A bit of a hassle, I know, but it would make for killer landscape photos.

If I'd have been a recent lottery winner, perhaps I would have bought one of these - just for fun. The sample photos remind me of some of mine from the days when I used to own a Leica M6 with the old 50mm Summicron: A bit bland, but with plenty of potential.

I'd underexpose and push in post for a slightly more contrasty look without burnt-out highlights.

"A bit of a hassle, I know, but it would make for killer landscape photos."

You're talking about matching the resolution of a D800. Might as well just use a D800.

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 14:11 UTC
In reply to:

Andrew Booth: Problem with shooting in b&w is that you can no longer correct for lens chromatic aberrations in post processing.

Instead of being able to re-align image planes for each colour separately - you'll just get additional blur at the periphery. Oh well.

Andrew, given only two colors for CA correction, correcting CA in post on color images is incomplete. There are secondary fringes introduced (usually orange and teal, very strange looking). You get much better correction on a monochrome image if you shoot with color filters. Oh well.

There's also the issue of longitudinal CA (LOCA, as some call it) which cannot be easily post processed, but which is totally fixed with color filters on a monochrome image. Even if you don't use color filters on a monochrome image, LOCA isn't distracting because it only affects out of focus areas.

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 14:08 UTC
In reply to:

Andries Pretorius: What is the point of this camera. It is nice as experimental equipment in a minute niche market, but from my perspective I see very little practical value.

Seems like Leica is losing it!!

@thanda, it makes no sense, at all, for you. The Leica doesn't let you "visualize" in B&W. The viewfinder is still color, and "unphotographic" in that it doesn't show DOF and distracts you from framing accurately. (there are "pluses" to offset this, however).

If you want to visualize in B&W, get a NEX7 or an EM5. Seriously. Eyelevel monochrome electronic viewfinders are amazing.

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 14:02 UTC
In reply to:

REDred Photo: It's interesting to me that we now consider any camera with fewer features to be "crippled and downgraded." We all seem to be in search of that ONE magic camera that does everything with 30+mp and incredibly sharp lenses, infinite battery life, stellar signal to noise ratio at ISO 50K, plus everything else you ever dreamed of having in a camera... and we want it to fit in a pocket and cost under $3k.

This simply doesn't exist. As such, cameras must be made to focus on doing some of these things, or even one of these things, really well. To say that a camera that is designed to do something entirely different is "crippled and downgraded" because it lacks some of the features of another less expensive camera is missing the point. This is a camera designed for a very specific purpose.

I'd say this camera really is "crippled and downgraded". While it is true that "This is a camera designed for a very specific purpose", it largely fails at that purpose.

An 18mp monochrome sensor has resolution pretty much equal to a 36mp color sensor. Well, the competition has been shipping a 36mp color sensor camera for three months.

A monochrome sensor has about 2 stops more sensitivity than a color sensor. But Leica's supplier is so outdated that the competing color sensors have gained a solid 4 stop advantage.

Until Leica gets hold of a sensor that isn't "crippled and downgraded" by industry standards, that's all they're going to deliver.

Yes, it can do things with color filters you can't do on a color camera through post processing, yet, but is that enough to offset the lack of dynamic range that goes along with monochrome digital, if you can't get the resolution and low light advantages you'd expect on a monochrome camera?

Direct link | Posted on May 15, 2012 at 13:55 UTC
Total: 558, showing: 341 – 360
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