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Old 12-12-2019   #18
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: back in the woods
Posts: 3,029
Every medium has a certain maximum of quality that you can reach using it. There are points along the way that might look interesting and exploit particular properties of the process to achieve a certain look. Film grain is an artefact. We just got used to accept it as inheritly "analog" and what you are used to, you typically like better than something you don't know. For me reality doesn't have grain.
Digital b&w is different. A lot of folks think they can get sloppy because you can rescue it in post processing. That's a load of bs.
If you want to achive great results you have to max out what the medium is capable of at every step of the process. It doesn't matter if you work with film or digital. Using in camera jpgs is a waste, get a point and shoot or just use your phone.
If you want to squeeze out the last drop of IQ from the MM, you need to max out the exposure, use a yellow filter, use the best lens you can get, make sure it's matched to the RF of the body, use at least 1/4f exposure times, the shorter the better. Maximize contrast of the file particularly at the shaddow and highlight area to get an even S curve in the histogram.
Get your files printed by someone with a piezography ink set-up on a bright white glossy paper (e.g. Hahnemuehle FA Baryta) ... et voila a "digital" image comes alive.

A lot of digital images look dead and artificial because during exposure, post processing and finally printing quality was left out in the dust. To maximize the exposure with digital is certainly more difficult than with a more forgiving film. This is particularly true for the MM. If you take care of it all along the way, the results can be stunning.
You have to see the light.
M9, MM & a bunch of glass, Q

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