This past weekend I spent couple of interesting days in eastern part of Germany, by the Baltic Sea. I did not expect more than just locations scouting and (mainly) testing my Phase One IQ140 digital back. I've owned it for few months but did not have much time to find out what it can actually do. And I can say now it can deliver a lot, much more than the P30 I used before. I'm still waiting for my slide films to be processed but unlike anytime before, I don't need to wait to see them in order to publish a note as I'm happy with what I captured digitally. Or, perhaps, following the announcement on Velvia discontinuation, I should rather feel that way. I have not done any explicit tests but the bottom line is that, compared to P30, the Phase One IQ140 made a tremendous progress when it comes to colour rendition. It's been showing a character, a sense to capture much less instantly and eventually show what has really been happening out there in the atmosphere. Of course, you may tweak the outcome in the process but this time round, the Phase One IQ140 remembered well all nuances of hues without trying to neutralize them. In case you wish, you may want to decide to do so later, in the mighty Capture One software. I don't.
On the way from Prerow to Zingst and beyond, you can find perhaps the most photogenic wooden groynes series nearby. I spent a considerable time there playing with the various options of composition and waiting for the right lighting. It's been no easy as directions of groynes did not fit so well with where the sun rose or routed its rays. At the end, I found this combination of wooden pieces and clouds that brought some light and colors into the scene.
Photographed near Prerow just after sunrise. No direct sun light appeared but the sky could have skimmed a little from what's been going on behind the scene. I'm glad the sensor saw it, which is a major difference from P30. The clouds were moving fast so I tried to blur them in contrast to the calm sea.
I found this old one while browsing the shore near Muggenburg. During the cloudy afternoon, I exposed for more than 3 minutes to see how the back can cope with it. I achieved a desired effect of both, the sky and sea being completely calm. The Phase One IQ140 handled such a long exposure with some noticeable noise artifacts but Capture One software managed them fabulously well. As it did previously with couple of my aurora borealis shots. Although I guess if you aim to print truly large, you'll have to keep exposures shorter than one minute.
Overall, I think I will try to spend much more prime time with my IQ as it seems to be a great partner. I'm yet to see if it can match the transparency results but it definitely is getting close in certain situations. One could get used to extremely accurate and neutral studio-like outcome of Phase One P30 and find a great use of it, but the IQ series starts a completely different league. Apparently, a league of its own. Apart from an excellent touch screen and the unmatched resolution, it is able to capture the spark of colors, too. And that's why I'm going to test its abilities in the coming months much more extensively.