I'm worried that folks who dumped whole systems to change from, say, a 5D to a D700 might have to dump that system and come back if the next Canon is fractionally better at one thing or another. Making that sort of change is working at margins, but with a huge financial impact that may obscure factors more important.
I have recently come to a different conclusion. I seriously doubt that any objective (read: doesn't know beforehand) observer would be able to pick out a D700 image from a 5D image. But anybody with eyes can see the difference between either one of those and an image made using large format. Seeing those big prints with detail beyond any possible result of small-format digital forced me to a reckoning.
I immediately pulled the Cambo out of the closet. I started with a Cambo SC/Calumet 45 (same camera), and had a 47mm Super Angulon that was too short to focus on that camera, 90 and 121mm Super Angulons, a cheapie 150mm Geronar, and a "vintage" 8-1/2" Ilex Paragon. I also had rollfilm backs for 6x7 and 6x9. I wanted to use roll-film backs, and you all know how much I like wide-angle lenses, so not being able to focus the 47 was a severe problem.
So, here's my dark-side excursion of the last month or so:
Sinar F+ 4x5 view camera
Standard bellows (two sets)
Bellows clips to use the bellows as a compendium shade
12" basic rail
6" extension rail
65mm Super Angulon in Copal shutter
180mm Symmar Convertible in Compur shutter
Lens boards for all of the above, plus a couple of extras
Fresnel insert (bought before realizing that the camera had a Fresnel included--probably unknown to the seller).
Shen-Hao 6x12 back
Horseman 6x9 back (works a little better than my current MPP 6x9 back)
I spent less than half the price of a D700 body for all of that. And the Sinar F is the "field" model of a high-end Swiss camera maker, not a budget model like the Cambo. The lenses are in some cases old but are or were absolutely the state of the art when they were made. And the resulting image quality will plainly blow away anything done in small format.
That's my dark-side story.
(But I'm still keeping my Canon stuff, and all the rest of my collection. The view camera offers no compromise in image quality, or in convenience and portability. But ultimately it's cheaper--when one is buying film by the acre, one is careful about exposure and subject.)
Rick "taking revolutionary, not evolutionary steps" Denney