The Nikon Df continues to be a controversial camera. At least for internet armchair quarterbacks. My observations and experience with the camera suggest almost everyone that actually buy’s one and uses it seriously ends up loving it. After sustained use most people feel a lot like this guy does. That doesn’t mean the camera is without fault. I’ve never owned a camera I didn’t wish something was a hair different. Like all cameras there are niggles here and there.
I wanted to follow-up on my post on the cure for pixel-peepingwith a few random thoughts on film, why I still shoot a bit of it regularly, and an example of what the hell I was talking about. As an aside last week or the week before the first section of The On Taking Pictures podcast #114 discussed a bit about - what we lost with analog photography. One of a very few photography podcasts I listen to when I’m driving. I find it amusing most of the time, kind of repetitive circling around the same topic most of the time but generally agreeable. I do have to say Wadman drives me crazy when he emphatically states things as ultimate facts when he’s not taken the time at all to actually get his facts strait.
If you happened to be tuned into my twitter feed at exactly the right time late last week you might be privy to the intel that I finally purchased a new laptop. I’ve been in desperate
need want of one for a couple of years now. Way back during late 2010 I purchased the original core 2 duo 11” MacBook Air. It’s served me well but was hard pressed even then with my current camera’s RAW files. Fast forward to 2014, 24 megapixel files, on-going software bloat, etc, — it’s become unbearable. It’s always been useless for color correction but I could live with that given it’s portability and reasonable battery life.
I’m going to make a claim that will have at least a few people wanting immediately tell me I’m wrong. They’ll cut and paste some physics stuff they found on the internet to prove it. They’ll quote thisor that popular knuclehead to prove the consensus of the illuminate are against my observations. A few will do just about anything to convince me — actually themseleves — that all it takes for a smaller format capture medium to look exactly like a larger capture medium is that oft quoted rule of thumb that ”the look” is one stop different between full-frame and APS-C (half frame).
Sorry, running a bit behind. As promised here is a zip file you can download with a bunch of scanned, prepped, washed, ironed, and dried plus-x film edge borders for your use and amusement. They are plenty big enough to scale to any reasonable print or output size. I tested them with my D600 and D800 files and they look great even huge. I left them a bit messy and not completely identical like the real thing. If you need use instructions — as in how to put these around your existing 3:2 ratio image give me a shout.
Did I ever mention I’ve owned and continue to evaluate every film emulation package in the universe? Are they better than they used to be? Sure but none of them reproduce results that are the same as the real thing and more importantly the cameras that generate the input photos still have some issues when used in real-world light. I evalute all of them mostly as entertainment. I actually use one of them in any serious way (Nik Silver EFEX Pro). VSCO provides a quick and dirty set of reasonable defaults for my import presets. The others I typically just like to poke fun at.
After yesterday’s fake film border rant I had an idea. Not a brilliant idea, simply a well, why don’t you do something about it kind of idea. The idea? How about some real film borders/edges for a few popular and good looking film edges. Before I go through the tedium of posting a whole roll of ‘um let alone a bunch of different films I thought I would put just one out there and see if anyone will actually use any of these.
I’ll bet you expected an update on the Ricoh GR given I actually used it over the weekend. It’s coming but truth is I actually didn’t get to make many pictures with it or the rest of my cameras this weekend. I’d say I have about two or three hours behind the wheel at this point. Not really enough time or diversity to say a whole lot, probably more time than most reviewers spend actually using the camera but then again I am not nearly as skilled as them at rendering a definitive set of positive opinions that quickly.
Moving on — The Nik collection. As I am sure many others felt, I had a mountain of concern when Google swallowed Nik. I’m not a heavy user of their suite of products but I enjoy Silver EFEX Pro 2 immensely. For anything I consider final work I use it exclusively. It’s the only fake grain that I find remotely similar to real film. Lightyears ahead of Lightroom. As for the other products, meh… They are nice but I don’t use them. I don’t need a ton of precision for local adjustments that I rarely do, I don’t really like a lot of effects beyond something a little more like a film look for black and white so for the most part they just lay around my hard drive collecting virtual dust.