Knowing the professor means I have someone I can ask questions of, and be sure that I get answers that I can trust!
Fair enough to say that someone can be a good photographer & talk nonsense, which is what has happened, and I've pointed out that he has done this. I do have a few issues with a constant search for the nth degree of improvement. It's still possible to get a saleable image from a pinhole camera, most commercial uses for photography won't ever show the differences between the two lenses, and 99.99999999% of people looking at the image are not going to look at it and say "Oh look he used a Zeiss lens over a Canon" and then they'll probably get it wrong.
If he was that bothered about IQ why isn't he shooting medium format, or even large format film?
Damien Hurst is a UK modern artist producing modern art on a commercial scale at very high prices, a lot of it is very controversial, such as a cow cut in half and preserved in formaldehyde.
Shooting for newspaper / magazines can be a deceiving medium for the end viewer, I wonder if you ever saw an image called 'the falling man'? it's a 9/11 shot quite famous, chilling in what it depicts, but the story behnd it illustrates how newspaper photography works. A number of shots were taken in a high speed burst, the photographer didn't even know he'd captured it until it was viewed back at the office, it was the picture editor who picked it out, and that's the point, there's a whole back office of people the public never sees. Most people see an image & think no further than the photographer, but I'm sure my images would improve if I had a picture editor, and a back office of photoshop experts behind me! Most glossy magazines now don't even do it in house, they choose the images and then send them out to third parties who do all the necessary photoshopping, to such an extent that the final result can look completely different to the original.
This is now common practice in commercial magazine images, particularly fashion, where people complain about the unobtainable looks of models.
Composition? no need to bother with that when you can crop it when you get back, in fact the only thing a photographer needs to do is to press the shutter at the right time and make sure it's in focus, the back office can do the rest!
Using the pop music analogy, it's like finding that a singer is miming on stage & using auto tune in the studio because they can't really sing, people still buy the albums and go to the live performances, and people believe that their idol is an 'awesome singer'