Monday, February 15, 2016

Dynamic range and equivalancy

First off, let me just say that the whole issue of equivalancy is about the most juvenille load of old garbage I have ever had the misfortune of encountering. It's akin that that constant snobbery over megapixels. Let's look at some of the great photos of the past - anything by Ansel Adams for example. Nobody goes around saying FP4 - should've used TRI-X. They just admire the image. 

When digital images are considered, people peep at pixels, blowing tiny portions of images up to unimaginable proportions. The actual image is simply not considered. Instead, the technical specifications of cameras are discussed. People that do this know nothing nor care anything about photography. Such people are not photographers but gadget freaks - people that pride themselves on having the latest shiny gadgets. 

People engage in embittered debates from embedded opinions about the merits of one gadget versus anouther and their capabilities. Does it really matter whether one camera has more dynamic range than another to anybody bar a gadget freak? By the way, I despise gadget freaks to the point that I would welcome a firey chasm opening up and swallowing them forever.

Dynamic range to be simple is the number of gradations between the lightest and darkest area it's possible to represent in an image. Gradations in a photographic context are called stops but that's not imnportant for this article. While it's possible to agree that film has more of a range than digital, in no way does this demean any digital image nor a film image. Having used both film and digital, I can say that there is a difference but used well, it makes zero difference which medium is used.

Equivalency is another battleground that should not exist. Film and digital are different mediums. End of story. Neither can be equivalent to the other because they're so different. In any case, isn't it the image that is what they're both about. Taking a photo of the same scene with a digital and a film camera just to compare the merits of both is just plain idiotic.

The modern term for people such as those that fret the small stuff over camers is measurebaters. I still use a Canon XT. It's 11 years old. It still works just fine. I have considered getting something different for various reasons. I could get a whole new system or another camera of the same brand but more recent or I could get a new lens. The only kind of image I can't take with my current setup is star photos. Sure - I'd like to be able to do that but it is just one kind of photography. Maybe tax refund time will allow me to experiment.

In truth though, photography is my hobby while my life revolves around other things. I am tremendously annoyed by measurebaters as they serve to do nothing but repulse me. I truly question what kind of God allows such beings to slither like Eve's serpent upon the surface of this earth!

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