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Thanks Michael, Edward.
Michael, really excellent shots with both your ZM21 and sigh.. 35CronV1! Do you have some more sample shots of the 35Cron at f/2?
Edward, that ZM50 shot looks exactly like slide film. Nice shot! I don't think you need change too much with your pp workflow. The color shots you posted are all beautifully rendered, contrasty and I don't think you need to do much other than correct for skin tones, unless its purely an exercise to experiment? Have you tried Capture One? Charles and others seem to have good experiences with Capture One in the past. Nothing wrong with the colors looking like chromes or Velvia, I love film and I bet many others as well
The problem with this comparison is that the digital version has the highlights blown out. A comparison where the highlights weren't blown out, and the shadows were brought up in post, would be a more telling comparison. That's especially true with an "ISO-less" camera like the M9.
Yours and Carsten's explanation is valid and as long as we are deliberate with shooting and checking exposure on the histogram or with a handheld meter, we can always pull up the shadows in digital and stretch the dynamic range. I don't disagree. But still the abrupt cut off of highlight detail in digital is not "natural" per se, and that is not how our eyes perceive brightness or highlight roll off. Oftentimes, a picture is not "ruined" if has pure black shadow details but it is almost always ruined if there are abrupt blown highlights. I am not defending one medium over the other, I definitely prefer digital for the convenience and resolution nowadays. With Moore's law and computing power, maybe in the near future, with so much Dynamic range available on the pixel level, blown highlights could be "programmed" into a camera sensor software, probably adjusting the gain on the sensor's amplication so that it tails off to logarithmic scale rather than a linear one. Else give us a metering mode that is intelligent enough to detect level 255 on the pixel and automatically adjust exposure to not exceed say 1-3% of the pixels at 255 and bring down the exposure automatically? That would definitely make my life easier.
Most people choose film for its look! I will recheck VCSO, Joe recommended last time. It might be a good idea to have the look but save the hassle.
VSCO presets tweaks the toning sliders on LR4 and PS , it won't help with blown highlights I actually get better results with VSCO on Canon/Nikon/Sony files rather than the M9 files. With M9, results varies but I do like VCSO's black & white emulation and some of the independent color toning tools. I asked VSCO if they would come up with a profile for Leica M9 and they didn't really answer but said it was in the pipeline. Maybe they haven't figured a way out to tame the M9 colors.
A few more Ektar 100 on M6 TTL.