Ok let's examine history to determine who's correct.
35mm film vs MF film. - MF wins.
Canon 1ds vs kodak DCS MF back - MF wins. (Available on Luminous landscape)
Canon 5D2 vs Hasselblad MF backs 40MP variety - MF wins.
D800 vs IQ180 - MF wins.
D900 56MP camera vs next gen MF 120+ MP - MF will win.
This is because MF is bigger than 35mm. MF has a specific use for low ISOs and slow subjects. There is no replacement for displacement. The bigger sensor/film will always serve better in those situations.
I can only imagine what will be possible when MF will move to full CMOS tech, then you will have the pixel density of a d800 + all the advantages of MF. It's just a better tool for what it does.
Your still missing the point. I'm not saying 35mm "wins". You said there was no comparison, no contest. My argument is that there ARE comparisons, and that there IS a contest. Sure, MF currently wins...in a niche. Will that always be the case? Who knows...the point is, the GAP IS CLOSING...for that same niche. My point is, in general, FF DSLR is a better tool overall, particularly when sheer pixel count is not the most significant factor. I can foresee a point in time when FF DSLRs have AS MANY pixels as MF...with better IQ on a per-pixel basis, and with better performance on a per-pixel basis (faster readout, better AF and metering, etc.) Will that day, where MF and DSLR perform roughly the same, ever come? Who knows. Is there still "no contest" or "no comparison" between MF and DSLR? Hell no...absolutely there is a contest, and the comparisons are showing a shrinking margin for MF.
Well, that's the last time I'll try to make my point. If you still don't get it, eh...
It's funny how you read but do not get understanding. MF is a niche, and in its niche there is no comparison to what it gives the photographer. A MF pixels will be bigger than a 35mm cameras which means sharper images. Give me a 12mp 35mm cam or a 12MP MF cam, and I'll use the MF cam everytime for what it's built for.
There is no contest in the market MF made, because its the cutting edge, its the best tech has to offer and someone will always want to have that.
35mm is like a child swinging its arms at the MF market for decades, and MF simply put its hand on the swinging child's head and heald it in its place.
Sorry, very strongly dispute the notion that MF is the best tech available. It is certainly the most prestigious tech, no question there. But as I said, prestige won't hold the MFD market forever. It has some advantages, but it is not untouchable. What the D800 can do now is only the beginning. We'll see what Canon comes up with in a year, however if they pop out a 47mp part with all the features of a 1D-series camera with better low-ISO DR, then the war on MFD will have begun in earnest. We won't be talking about worthlessly flailing arms then...we'll be talking about a full-on war, and the question I'm presenting is...will the MF market REALLY be able to compete? They can throw out all the megapixels they want...they are already within the same pixel-pitch sizes of 35mm...they can push that envelope farther, enter the 2µm pixel range and again surpass FF DSLR...but without further process technology improvements, those 2µm pixels would likely be significantly inferior to 35mm format...more noise overall, higher read noise, etc.
BTW, factually, MF pixels are
in the same ballpark as FF DSLR pixels. Using the IQ180 as an example, it has 5.2µm pixels. (The math: 53.7mm / 10328 pixels = 0.005199mm/pixel; multiply by 1000 to convert mm to µm.)
From a pixel size standpoint, that is quite average, and in the eyes of Roger Clark, quite ideal (he believes ~5µm pixels offer the ideal balance of all factors for overall IQ.) In comparison...the D800? 4.9µm pixels...hmm, once again, IDEAL! The Canon 1D IV? 5.7µm pixels. The 1D X? 6.95µm pixels! The 7D? 4.3µm pixels. The D3200? 3.85µm pixels. Medium format cameras are and have been in line with DSLR sensor pixel pitches for some time now. They do not have any particular advantage in pixel size overall until you get into the lower megapixel counts...30-40mp. However at those pixel counts, there is no pixel count advantage whatsoever, and something like the D800, that has arguably better per-pixel IQ, surpasses them. SNR matters a lot more at higher ISO, but since MFD cameras are low-ISO tools, the thing that really matters from an IQ standpoint is DR.
So...given the IQ advantage the D800 clearly demonstrates against say the Hasselblad 30mp or 40mp backs...would you really still pick the Hassy? I'd certainly take an IQ180 today if I had the option. I'd take a D800 in a heartbeat if my only other option was a Hasselblad H4D-31 or H5D-40 (which, btw, have 6.8µm and 5.9µm pixels, respectively...still SMALLER than the 1D X.)
Video review, Hasselblad H4D-40 and D800:
The argument near the end was the D800 did better in the shadows, and the H4D-40 did better in the highlights. Simple fact of the matter is, the D800 can do a full TWO STOPS better in the shadows (far more than he pushed in the video)...meaning it is a simple matter of under-exposing a bit more on the D800, and you have better highlights as well. Oh, and in terms of skin tones? That's all just math...tone curves. You can produce whatever results you want, including exceptional skin tones, with any digital camera. There are powerful tools that help you create color profiles or camera profiles for any brand of camera to meet whatever goals you want, even normalize the output of one camera to another (cross device calibration.) So, in the niche that is supposedly untouchable for FF DSLR (35mm format)? The D800 has most definitely encroached on that territory, and has more than touched it. It can compete head to head with a 40mp Hassy (something that is still commonly used in the studio photography world.)
I fully understand your arguments. It is not a problem of not understanding. It is a simple matter of disagreeing.