Upload & Sell: Off
Jman: My love/hate with this camera is bipolar too.
I review some sets of my images, and I've never been so happy with results, rendering, atmosphere. I go through others, and I'm frustrated. I seem to have alternating sets of 5D2 and XE shots; just uploaded a batch of both to one of my editors last night...
So far, it seems, this camera really excels at: black and white conversions in post (I far prefer the look to what I can get from my 5D2), nighttime/low light color, near-to-medium subject distance.
But it can't touch my 5D2 for: daytime/full light, shooting at long subject distances, really wide + busy scenes (AKA certain types of landscapes under certain environmental conditions), compatibility with my Tammy MF lens (might be an adaptor thing; images seem to lack critical sharpness, which seems to really amplify the painterly look in a bad way).
Some of this may be that I'm shooting the 5D2 in RAW and XE in Jpg. And shooting in full/mid day light is never a good idea-- but sometimes a necessity for work.
I will say that I feel like in the last two months or so I've pushed my photography to newer levels because of this camera-- both what it allows and what it doesn't. I think it's even changed the way I shoot my workhorse 5D2 + 35L.
No doubt it can be a frustrating, disheartening little bugger from time to time.
Another big aspect is processing. My workflow is quite different with the XE files, though I still use Aperture. I've always preferred going from an underexposed image to bumping exposure and contrast a bit via sliders or curves. Expose to the right and then maximize DR in post, in my opinion, tends towards a sort of flat, soulless image... I'd rather have noise in my shadows and approach from the other direction. With the XE jpgs, this is amplified; at least in Aperture, they do not take kindly to backing off the Exposure slider. They work better using the brightness slider to pull them down, and exposure slider to increase exp, and they take pretty significant curves adjustments well-- sometimes better than 5D2 RAW files. Crushing the blacks-- I'm shooting DR200 mostly-- via curves or some other method seems to really help keep the XE tonality realistic, whereas in my 5D2 files it quickly has the opposite impact.
Great thread everyone! I love the Aurora shots from TrÝmso. Reminds me of an assignment I had in Finland (where it would have been great to have an XE already). What ISO is that?
And Magic, that's a great set of images all around. It tells a story, for sure, even if not an explicit/clear one. The shot of the woman in bonnet so striking, particularly given the grit of the full set. I find myself wanting to linger on that shot ever long, trying to figure it out.