Author Topic: Is it me or the Z-system?  (Read 922 times)

PeterN

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2020, 17:04:51 »
it might be the lenses you use. The only Z lens I own is a 4/24-70S and it is too perfect for my taste. With Novoflex Z to OM adapter I do use Oly lenses from the 1989ies and the output is absolutely charming and magic.

Thanks, Frank. I guess you are right. The lenses definitely play a role although I thought the smaller pixel size of the sensor as well. I just made a few portrait shots with the Z7 and Nikon 105mm 2.5 and I liked the results. BTW: I also noticed that raw processors of C1 and Adobe differ a lot for Nikon files. C1 renders more vibrant and contrasty. Adobe more muted when using the generic/standard profile. It is vice versa with Olympus. 
Peter

Jack Dahlgren

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #16 on: July 15, 2020, 17:05:38 »
I felt the same thing when I used a high megapixel camera. Currently I'm using the Z6 and don't have that impression. I find the files have a lot of latitude and can be processed in a number of different ways. Maybe some more experimentation with post processing would help. I find I can be a lot bolder and not have to worry about it. I also have good results with older lenses which can add some character. People make positive comments on the character of my old S.C Auto 50mm f/1.4. I didn't think it was a great lens on other cameras I've owned, but sometimes a lens and a body are just well suited for each other.

This just boils down to a suggestion that you experiment and push the boundaries a bit to see if you can get the look you want before abandoning it.

Nasos Kosmas

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #17 on: July 15, 2020, 17:50:52 »
I just have the same impression from the photos I always see here in this forum
I did spend some time with files from a Z 50 on NEFs and jpegs and I show jpegs very shinny and contrasty
When I played with NEFs on NX D  I got more natural output
Color Profiles are not equal across the camera systems
I still use my trusty D 750  but  I will get into Z soon

PeterN

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #18 on: July 16, 2020, 16:53:56 »
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Jack and Nasos. I am glad that I am not crazy ;-)
What we see and experience does not only differ by person but may also differ in time.

IN the meantime, I reached the conclusion to keep the Z7 with the prime lenses for special purposes and add a 16-24MP camera for general photography.
Peter

simsurace

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2020, 10:16:52 »
Technicalities aside -- I've seen numerous discussions on this and that rendering difference and how to equalize rendering/color etc. between different systems -- in the end the right camera is the one with which you feel confident to take the shots you want. It gets out of the way and allows you to be creative and experiment. If you have a nagging thought in the back of your head that you will have to struggle with the files to get what you want, that already puts a barrier between you and your subject. Personally, I try to overcome these blocks by working on solving the underlying problems, but others may just choose a different system that gets them from A to B in an easier fashion. Going back to a previous camera because that one did exactly what you wanted it to do is perfectly reasonable. Cameras have been pretty darn good for the last 10 years.

Regarding the highlight issue -- one issue I face switching back and forth between Z6 and D750 is gauging the right exposure with the EVF. Sometimes the viewfinder fools me and the RAWs end up suboptimally exposed. I have to remind myself to pay attention to the viewfinder histogram. I just haven't had enough practice. Try to make sure to factor in exposure and the default settings of the RAW converter when making comparisons. While the full-well capacity of the sensor is given, the observed clipping behavior depends on the RAW converter settings. When I get a new camera I always calibrate the meter to my taste by looking at the RAW files with RawDigger.
Simone Carlo Surace
suracephoto.com

ColinM

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2020, 23:19:00 »
... one issue I face switching back and forth between Z6 and D750 is gauging the right exposure with the EVF. Sometimes the viewfinder fools me and the RAWs end up suboptimally exposed.

Care to expand on this Simone?

Consistently underexposed, overexposed, or just variable?

simsurace

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #21 on: July 19, 2020, 23:30:07 »
Care to expand on this Simone?

Consistently underexposed, overexposed, or just variable?

I don't think there is a consistent pattern. It is not a camera issue as I believe the Z camera viewfinders to be quite good. I think I just haven't learned to properly integrate the viewfinder exposure preview in my subconscious...not having used an EVF camera before besides the V1. I just tend to leave the histogram on and try to hit something reasonable there (obviously I'm talking about more fast-paced photography in M mode when I don't want too much exposure variability between shots due to framing, on a tripod I take my time and nothing has really changed for me -- it would be nice to have a raw histogram but I use UniWB as an approximation when I really want to get an optimal exposure).
Simone Carlo Surace
suracephoto.com

golunvolo

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #22 on: July 20, 2020, 00:30:09 »
Actually I have had the same issue with the z6 from the beginning. In strong or daylight, the exposure is spot on with the evf but, in low light, is very easy to get underexposed images. The screen is much better in this regard. Now I´m more use to it and the pliability of the files makes adjusting them later an easy process. I use to underexpose images on stage by 1 or 2 full stops, some even more.
  I also tried to fix it changing the brightness of the viewfinder. At the end, knowing what to expect has proven to be a better fix in my case.

PeterN

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #23 on: July 21, 2020, 08:29:41 »
The Dynamic Range of an EVF is rather limited. I only use the EVF for composition and manual focus. For lenses with electronic communication, I use the camera's exposure indicator and compensate based on "feeling". That worked well with the D750. Strangely, I never paid much attention to the histogram during a fast pace shooting. So I think I should experiment a bit more with the Z7 to become comfortable with that method. Of course, it's a bit tricky with old lenses but I have only little experience with using them with the Z so far.

The Z NEFs are easily malleable to get exact the colours and sharpness required. If one has colour issues, do include a ColorChecker Passport or similar in the frame to allow fine-tuning colours.

I do use/have a colorchecker but am usually happy with the colors. It relates more the subtle differences in tones and 'glowing'.You are much more knowledgeable on this than I am, but from what I have read (and correct me if I am wrong), it may have to do with the pixel size, the number of lens elements, and obviously the in-camera processing. It is my understanding that the combination of lens and glass stack thickness also plays a role. Whatever it is, it tells me I need to experiment more and learn more about how certain lenses behave with certain cameras.

Just shoot a little more with both RAW and JPG as output files and see which setting does what, the JPG will be your reference of what Nikon thinks the image should look like and the RAW can be used to see how your RAW editor interpits the data from the NEF file.

I like experimenting in PP rather than jpeg but I will try. Thanks.

When I get a new camera I always calibrate the meter to my taste by looking at the RAW files with RawDigger.

Simone, can you share how you calibrate the meter?
Peter

simsurace

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #24 on: July 21, 2020, 09:53:31 »
Simone, can you share how you calibrate the meter?

There is a meter fine-tuning adjustment somewhere deep in the menus. I think I've dialed in 1/6 or 1/3 of a stop there occasionally after shooting enough pictures and seeing that, e.g. I could have exposed all of them 1/3 of a stop more.
It is really about understanding how far you can push the highlights before you get clipping.
So maybe I should say, I try to calibrate myself  ;D
It is maybe specific to the way I shoot, but I find the meter to be less consistent in many tricky situations I shoot in. For example, when photographing musicians live on stage, there may be background elements which may alter the exposure shot-to-shot when I change the framing, even though the light was constant. That's why I shoot manual, and I try to set the exposure carefully before starting to shoot. But the issue is when suddenly another shot comes up in different light. One has to develop a way of quickly changing the settings to capture the shot. Changing modes/going into menus is often too slow, you have to change on the fly. That's where some reflexes that were learned with the OVF don't easily translate.
Simone Carlo Surace
suracephoto.com

PeterN

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #25 on: July 21, 2020, 11:03:01 »
Thanks. That's basically how I shoot: mostly manual and when I use auto ISO, change with exposure compensation. I don't think I would like to constantly get the same correction.
Peter

Birna Rørslett

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Re: Is it me or the Z-system?
« Reply #26 on: July 21, 2020, 12:33:45 »
I typically set a permanent -1/6 EV correction on my Nikons. This is a global adjustment and will not show up in the EXIF data.