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Author Topic: D3, 1DsMKIII, D300  (Read 33290 times)
Leping
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« Reply #20 on: December 07, 2007, 12:09:42 PM »
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A 24X30 print would show a clear advantage to the Canon. There's no way that a 12MP camera can make a print that size the way a 21MP camera can.

And as I indicated in my article, at print sizes that are within the capability of both cameras the IQ differences at low ISO would be a quibble, and likely subject to the vagaries of processing as much as anything else.

Michael
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Congradulations Michael for this very interesting and highly informative quick take!

Nevertheless, to me, the comparison can be better, if we taking in the following factors.

1. The Nikon 24-120mm VR is not really a sharp lens at f/5.6.  But this does not affect the noise behavior of course and high ISO noise was Michael's main aim.

2. The one which does affect noise the the RAW converter.  ACR/LightRoom in general produce much noisier images from the D3/D300 NEF files, I have found, compared to Capture NX, even when the NR is turned off in the NX.  On the other hand the handle the CR2 files much better, to my eyes.

Why? Actually there has been quite interesting discussions on going at Bjørn Rørslett's forum on both NX's (and possibly Nikon's) noise and behind scene CA reduction issues:

[a href=\"http://nikongear.com/smf/index.php?topic=6829.0]http://nikongear.com/smf/index.php?topic=6829.0[/url]

, talking about the possible hidden information in the D3/D300 NEFs which I am almost sure the ACR/LightRoom is not current consider, if they do exist.

By the way, I have seen many 1DsIII samples and exactly like Michael I am extremely impressed.  Still shooting film, I am tireless to try to squeeze out the last bits of fine details relatively artifacts free from digital captures.  Based on what I saw, if I spend serious money on a DSLR today, I would not hesitate to go for a 1DsIII, since I am basically a landscape photographer and the 1DIII/D3's high ISO capabilities does not matter too much.  The pixel level fine details and micro-contrast contained in the 1DsIII RAW files are truly astonishing, basically at the same level of 18-22MP MF backs if the right processing tools are used, despite of the presence of the AA filter.  Even I label myself a Nikon shooter and lover!  In the past I argued with many others on the film vs. digital subject, but even with my more conservative accessment the 1DsIII resolution has passed the 645 Velvia 50 level.  For example there is a 1DsIII/MF back comparison here:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat...25835108&page=1

Talking about resolution, and again like Michael, most importantly at low ISO values, there has been reports that the D3 images does not contain ultra-fine details, like these from my mentor and friend Lloyd Chambers:

http://www.diglloyd.com/diglloyd/blog.html

The subject is heavily debated here:

http://nikongear.com/smf/index.php?topic=6911.0

For one I tended to agree with Lloyd: without access a D3 I too found my D300 images not to the crispy D2x image level with more soft, maybe more "(negative) film like" feeling which I do not really like (I like chrome and B&W film feelings).  I thought the same could be the case for the D3 until yesterday, when Imaging-Resourse posted the RAW files of their preliminary test images.  I downloaded the NEFs, and played carefully in different RAW converters, ACR, LightRoom (basically the same to ACR but ACR is just updated), Capture NX, Phase One, and my perferred RAW Developer (RD).  At the end, I found the RD does a much surperior job digging out that last ounce of fine details out of the D3 RAW files, although it also outputs more noise (which I do not care), and it lacks the automatic CA reduction feature in the NX.

Unlike most reviewers/testers, I do not look the converted images merely at 100%, but upsample them to a standard size, which is 16x24 at 300dpi, or 4800x7200 pixels, as my comparison base to exam the real fine detail and artifact level.  This link brings to the RD processed D3 RAW files to see the level of fine details there:

http://nikongear.com/smf/index.php?topic=7081.0

To my eyes, at the 170% upsample level, the ACR/LightRoom images look plasticky with the fine textures on smooth surfaces totally wiped out.  ACR only exports at 25.1MP or 4088 pixels at the short site maximum, so to compare the ACR converted with mine you have to further upres.  There is a reason Charlie Cramer and many other used to be film-based fine photographers use RD for RAW conversion.  A direct link to the RD output, at 170% resolution, is here:

http://lepingzha.smugmug.com/gallery/50676...229584488/Large

which was from the RD's Hybrid sharpening set to 1/10.  Some small crops are below.  No Photoshop involved in processing except for saving JPEGs at quality level 10.

Remember you are looking at a 16x24 blow up at 100% on screen.  The little mostly demosiacing artifact will disappear on print, or at 50% viewing level, which matches printing results better.

Thank you for reading my long post!
« Last Edit: December 07, 2007, 12:52:48 PM by LEPING » Logged

Peter Gregg
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« Reply #21 on: December 07, 2007, 12:32:41 PM »
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I consider Michael to be the type of guy to get into something and give a very solid opinion or report on whatever he has hi hands on. Even if I don't agree with the outcome, there is enough weight behind his thinking to make his words command attention.

Having said that, there are a few points I would make on some of Michael's statements. One thing that really isn't that important, but also can't be allowed to just fall to the floor is while understanding and appreciating the result of the comparison of the 1Ds MK3 and D3, it is just enough of an annoyance to see that the 1D MK3 and D3 are the real comparable cameras and not the D3 and the 1Ds MK3. This should be kept in mind for the future and just because I mention it it does not mean any disagreement or lack of understanding on my part that the MK3 was not available. It means it is something important enough in my eyes to do in the future.

Two area's where I do have a disagreement is the basic underlining premise that bigger pixels automatically mean lower noise. Canon's entire advancement this last round is based on smaller pixels but at the same time keeping the same size photo receptors as the previous generation of sensor. If the Canon 1D MK3 proves to be fairly close in noise  to the Nikon D3, then the Canon is accomplishing that with a smaller pixel - but that test was not able to be done. The 1Ds MK3 however, has a smaller pixel but the same size photo receptor inside the pixel and manages to achieve better results than the 1Ds MK2. The 1D MK3 has a bigger pixel than the 1Ds MK3, so where the chips may fall is still undetermined.

Having the 5D and the MK3 I can tell you that shooting a wedding and in the part of the church service where there is no flash, I much much prefer using the MK3 over the 5D at ISO 3200 and the results are about a stop or more better. Even though I know I am right on this - assuming someone disagrees with me, what this proves is that the next generation of the 5D is poised to become the king of the hill at low noise if Canon uses this same technology on the next 5D and Canon also stays conservative with the amount of megapixels they put into the camera. I would guess the extreme would be something in the 16 megapixel size and a conservative approach would be something in the 14 megapixel size. At the 1Ds MK2's 16.7 megapixels with the new smaller-pixel/larger-photo-receptor technology, that sensor should yield the equal to Nikon's D3. At 14 megapixels it should pass the Nikon's D3 easily. If nikon was able to do the same thing that Canon does with a smaller pixel and larger photo receptor, it would take that camera to a whole new level, Canon is the only one in position to accomplish that now, if they chose to do it.

I also want to add an interesting test in making 12x18 lab prints from both the Nikon D3 and the Canon 1Ds MK3 and having about 10 people choose which was better, the Canon won 9 out of 10, and I also chose the Canon print. The person choosing the Nikon print chose it based on the facial expression - duh. The prints were ISO 3200 images from both cameras.

Peter
« Last Edit: December 07, 2007, 12:36:09 PM by Peter Gregg » Logged
Leping
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« Reply #22 on: December 07, 2007, 12:59:28 PM »
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I also want to add an interesting test in making 12x18 lab prints from both the Nikon D3 and the Canon 1Ds MK3 and having about 10 people choose which was better, the Canon won 9 out of 10, and I also chose the Canon print. The person choosing the Nikon print chose it based on the facial expression - duh. The prints were ISO 3200 images from both cameras.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Convince me it is fair to make 12x18s out of a 12MP camera to be compared with the one from a 21MP.  D3 vs. 1DIII is far more fair since the D3 and 1DsIII are targeted for different applications, just as one guy said you can't compare a Ferrari with a truck.

Don't take me wrong since I will probably get a 1DsIII, but I am a landscape shooter not a sport chaser or photo journalists.

Plus, you should checkout the sensor efficiency test results where the D3 has a clear lead.  Maybe the 1DsIII's is even higher, but sorry, no data yet.

[a href=\"http://theory.uchicago.edu/~ejm/pix/20d/posts/tests/D300_40D_tests/]http://theory.uchicago.edu/~ejm/pix/20d/po...D300_40D_tests/[/url]

The subject is also heavily discussed here:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat...25658562&page=1

You see more noise on your prints because the improper RAW converter (ACR) was used.  See my post above it does not treat CR2s and NEFs equally well and output heavy noise from the Nikon RAW files.  Try out Capture NX and see the difference.  We should always compare with the manufacture's own converters, i.e., DPP and NX.  ACR or LightRoom are NOT the equal base for all under the same settings, for sure.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2007, 01:17:11 PM by LEPING » Logged

John Sheehy
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« Reply #23 on: December 07, 2007, 01:00:53 PM »
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If you read Michael's postscript, you will see that the shots were in raw and rendered in Lightroom. They are not in camera JPEGs. Of course, Nikon may have done some NR behind Michael's back to the raw file.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=158971\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I come in here through the back door.  When someone starts a thread, referencing an article from the main page, it might not be obvious that it was an article that was being referenced.  So, naturally, I thought of default conversions or JPEGs.

I don't think that converters that convert many cameras and brands convert all images equally.  You stand the risk of upsetting people if their cameras' RAWs convert noisier in you converter, or are more detail-less, so there is motive to try to stick with the MFR's style as closely as possible, unless you can make an improvement without compromising something else (such as ACR's line noise reduction).

I've looked at the RAW data of all three cameras, and they all look pretty honest, with no signs of filtering (noise concentrated near nyquist).  The only tampering is with blackpoint, highlight clipping, and rescaling of RAW values on a global or line-by-line basis, etc.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2007, 01:09:06 PM by John Sheehy » Logged
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« Reply #24 on: December 07, 2007, 01:08:33 PM »
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And the good news is, both Canon and Nikon users have reason to be happy!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=158956\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Well, those willing to spend US$8000!  The 40D still collects only about 1/4 as many photons as a D3 with the same exposure, and has more than double the individual pixel read noise as the 1Dmk3 at ISO 1600, while having less than half as many pixels!
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Leping
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« Reply #25 on: December 07, 2007, 01:13:40 PM »
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A 24X30 print would show a clear advantage to the Canon. There's no way that a 12MP camera can make a print that size the way a 21MP camera can.

And as I indicated in my article, at print sizes that are within the capability of both cameras the IQ differences at low ISO would be a quibble, and likely subject to the vagaries of processing as much as anything else.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=158972\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I totally agree, Michael.  I broke my own (16x24) rule and upsampled (in RD) and printed the Imaging-Resource's 1DsIII RAW test image to 24x36 (part of it of course) at 300dpi, and it look great (even I can't stand the most people's 12x18s out of DSLRs).

I hope you would consider going back to China someday with real local photographers, and I will be happy and more than thrilled to be your local logistic manager and interpretor, as I did for Richard Lohmann and George DeWolf last year at this time!
« Last Edit: December 07, 2007, 01:18:49 PM by LEPING » Logged

Pelao
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« Reply #26 on: December 07, 2007, 02:50:02 PM »
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Michael,
Thanks for this practical test. I found it useful, and as always you concentrate on what matters in real world use for those in the market for this type of camera.

A while back I was watching  LLVJ #1 and the review of the D30. You held up some large prints and showed just how wonderful the results could be from a camera that might now be called primitive.

The cameras in this test, and others like the 40D and 5D, offer results that are simply spectacular. We can quibble endlessly about technical details, but from the cameras now available there is certainly something to fit the needs and budget of most photographers.


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Well, those willing to spend US$8000! The 40D still collects only about 1/4 as many photons as a D3 with the same exposure, and has more than double the individual pixel read noise as the 1Dmk3 at ISO 1600, while having less than half as many pixels!

Perhaps we need to ask: is there a camera available that can allow me to print to the size I want and produce excellent results. The actual specification measurements matter not at all. It's the end result we should be measuring.
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John Sheehy
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« Reply #27 on: December 07, 2007, 04:28:02 PM »
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The cameras in this test, and others like the 40D and 5D, offer results that are simply spectacular. We can quibble endlessly about technical details, but from the cameras now available there is certainly something to fit the needs and budget of most photographers.
Perhaps we need to ask: is there a camera available that can allow me to print to the size I want and produce excellent results. The actual specification measurements matter not at all. It's the end result we should be measuring.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=159063\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm not talking about some philosophical abstraction; all "end results" originate with signal and noise; it's all recorded as numbers, and some have more numbers, some have less numbers, some have more accurate numbers, some have less accurate numbers.
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John Camp
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« Reply #28 on: December 07, 2007, 04:44:04 PM »
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I admit I'm somewhat of a photographic philistine, having done most of my serious work in photojournalism rather than the various high-quality advertising and art modes, but I just got my D3 and FREAKIN' 25600. You can do whatever pixel-peeping you want, but I promise you, this is gonna be a revolution in pj work -- I took the camera out of the box, stuck in a battery from the D2x and shot my cat walking across the room in the light of a single lamp at ISO 6400 -- and I COULD HAVE FREAKIN' PUT IT IN A NEWSPAPER if it hadn't been a picture of my cat.

I can tell you that an awful lot of PJ work is done in low-light conditions -- late in the afternoon outside of jails, into the interior of cars, press conferences in poorly-lit rooms, or people walking along government-building hallways, or sitting in their living rooms, or night-time crime scenes, or shots taken with long (slow) lenses. Flash works for some of it,, but also makes things look really unnatural, unless you have hours to set up, and there's not much you can do about the long-slow problem. But at 6400 and up you can shoot natural-light shots at fast enough speeds that you don't get blur when people move their lips or turn their heads...And though the photos won't work for art purposes, they'll sure as hell work in a newspaper. I am seriously impressed by this camera, in a way I wasn't with earlier cameras. There was always an argument with earlier cameras about whether they were really as good as film, or just more convenient -- in this case, I haven't seen film do what this camera can. This camera notably pushes beyond film capabilities.

Maybe Nikon shooters just haven't been as privileged as Canon shooters when it comes to high ISO, but I was reading Bjorn Rorslett's site when he got his D3, and he pretty much portrayed it as a jaw-dropper. That's about all I can say: I'm not a pixel-peeper, but I freaked out the first few hours I was shooting this thing. It's like nothing I've ever encountered, and I spent last year working with an M8 and a Noctilux....

Not be be over-excited, or anything. 8-)

JC
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Wayne Fox
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« Reply #29 on: December 07, 2007, 04:47:41 PM »
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Perhaps we need to ask: is there a camera available that can allow me to print to the size I want and produce excellent results. The actual specification measurements matter not at all. It's the end result we should be measuring.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=159063\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I agree with that statement to some degree.

The challenge is there are many times you don't know what you want, how big you want it, or how much you might need to crop it until you see the images.  That has been true long before digital came into the picture.
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« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2007, 05:18:37 PM »
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I agree with that statement to some degree.

The challenge is there are many times you don't know what you want, how big you want it, or how much you might need to crop it until you see the images.  That has been true long before digital came into the picture.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=159104\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Where we're going doesn't seem to change all that much through the years, but how we get there sure keeps mutating!
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« Reply #31 on: December 08, 2007, 11:34:50 AM »
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I admit I'm somewhat of a photographic philistine, having done most of my serious work in photojournalism rather than the various high-quality advertising and art modes, but I just got my D3 and FREAKIN' 25600. You can do whatever pixel-peeping you want, but I promise you, this is gonna be a revolution in pj work -- I took the camera out of the box, stuck in a battery from the D2x and shot my cat walking across the room in the light of a single lamp at ISO 6400 -- and I COULD HAVE FREAKIN' PUT IT IN A NEWSPAPER if it hadn't been a picture of my cat.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=159102\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

John,
I felt pretty much the same way when I got my 5D. I found I could take photos in the street at night without the disturbing flash which brings attention to oneself. I thought it would be ideal for photojournalism.

I wish Michael had also compared the D3 with the 5D which has the same pixel count and sensor size. We could have then found out if the lower noise of the D3 at say ISO 6400 was at the sacrifice of some detail, because of course any camera can have an ISO of 12,800 and 25,600 by simply underexposing the appropriate number of stops at the highest ISO setting.

With this idea in mind, I wondered how my 5D would perform at various stops of underexposure at ISO 3200 (which is already ISO 1600 underexposed one stop).

So I set up my 5D on tripod and directed it to a poorly lit corner of the room. Experimented with a few shots to get a full ETTR, which was 2 seconds at f11 and ISO 3200, then proceeded to reduce the exposure with each subsequent shot, eventually arriving at an ISO equivalent of a quarter of a million (ISO 256,000).

Instead of the figure of ISO 3200, I have used the correct figure of ISO 4000 (according to dpreview) to arrive at an ISO equivalent of a quarter of a million with 6 stops underexposure, ie. from the ETTR of 2 secs exposure; 1 sec, 1/2 sec, 1/4 sec, 1/8th sec, 1/15th sec, 1/30th sec.

The shot which was underexposed by 6 stops was hoplessly noisy but I wondered if the 'mean' stacking mode in CS3E would make it usable. I think it has.

So here it is, with a 'before and after' stacking comparison. Perhaps the first ISO quarter of a million shot ever displayed on LL   .

[attachment=4178:attachment]  [attachment=4177:attachment]
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Leping
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« Reply #32 on: December 08, 2007, 02:30:29 PM »
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I wish Michael had also compared the D3 with the 5D which has the same pixel count and sensor size. We could have then found out if the lower noise of the D3 at say ISO 6400 was at the sacrifice of some detail, because of course any camera can have an ISO of 12,800 and 25,600 by simply underexposing the appropriate number of stops at the highest ISO setting.

I hope it is not simple exposure.  Checkout the measures on the page I posted:

http://theory.uchicago.edu/~ejm/pix/20d/po...D300_40D_tests/

the 5D's quantum efficiency (4.1) is way behind the D3's (7.7).  5D collects 0.061 electrons per unit area while D3 captrues 0.108.  These are not surprising since the 5D is two year old technology and the D3 use the new double micro lens design.

Sorry for getting into numbers again.  But I am trained as a scientist as well.  From looking samples I have a feeling that the 1DsIII's QE is on the par of the D3's, but there has been no measures yet.

From the samples I saw (checkout the Imaging-Resources, for example) the D3's exposure parameters are consistent with the ISO ratings, and to my eyes the D3 RAW images contains more details than my 5Ds when examed at not 100% but 170% to 200% at high ISOs, and properly (and painfully) sharpen.  As Lloyd going to point out D3's initial soft images actually makes them exceptionally well to be enlarged, just like my very soft Imacon 949 scans.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2007, 02:39:58 PM by LEPING » Logged

Ray
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« Reply #33 on: December 08, 2007, 03:35:53 PM »
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I hope it is not simple exposure. 

....the 5D's quantum efficiency (4.1) is way behind the D3's (7.7).  5D collects 0.061 electrons per unit area while D3 captrues 0.108.  These are not surprising since the 5D is two year old technology and the D3 use the new double micro lens design.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=159307\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I suppose the fact that the D3's base ISO is 200 (rather than the 100 of the Canons) is explained by it's greater quantum efficiency. I'm not doubting that the D3 has lower noise than the 5D at high ISO's, it's just not clear by how much and I simply don't know enough to make assumptions that what might appear to be as much as, say a 1 stop improvement at ISO 1600, is carried forward to ISO 25,800 and beyond. Although it would be reasonable to assume that it would be the case.

As I understand it, ISO 3200 on the 5D (actually ISO 4000 and this should be taken into account when making comparisons) is really ISO 1600 underexposed 1 stop (ie. no pre A/D analog boost) and likewise, ISO 12,800 and 25,600 on the D3 is really ISO 6,400 underexposed 1 stop and 2 stops respectively.

If this is the case, it seems a legitimate comparison to me to compare the 5D at ISO 4000, underexposed by 2/3rds of a stop to make it effectively ISO 6,400, with the D3 at ISO 6400, just to see the difference   .

Also, I see no reason why one should not extend this principle and compare further underexposure in both cameras. Perhaps at ISO 256,000 the D3 could produce a result with a single image as good as that 5D stacked image I posted above   . (7 images of the same exposure stacked in mean mode and auto-aligned).
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Leping
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« Reply #34 on: December 08, 2007, 03:52:15 PM »
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Also, I see no reason why one should not extend this principle and compare further underexposure in both cameras. Perhaps at ISO 256,000 the D3 could produce a result with a single image as good as that 5D stacked image I posted above   . (7 images of the same exposure stacked in mean mode and auto-aligned).
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Thanks Ray!  With the stacked images in hand you should download the trial version and try this "super resolutin" (and noise reduction) stuff out:

[a href=\"http://www.outbackphoto.com/CONTENT_2007_01/section_hdr_and_tonemapping/20071002_PhotoAcute/index.html]http://www.outbackphoto.com/CONTENT_2007_0...cute/index.html[/url]

I tried it out with a set of my infrared converted 5D shots and blow is a crop of the results at 200% (you know my habit   ).  Do I need to say the smoother looking one (right) is after the "super resolution" treatment?

Canon 5D-IR, 24-105mm/f4 L lens at 105mm, upsampled to 200% in PhotoAcute from 4 identical exposures on the tripod ("2x", the PhotoAcute "super-resolution" default) to DNG RAW file, with "Oversharpenng protection" at "Normal" and no other options (such as color defringing, geometry correction, or dynamic expansion), then converted to TIFF in Raw Developer (ACR or Light Room much worse) with R-L deconvolution sharpening 1.2/50, opened in Photoshop with little "Film Noise" added to the 5,836x8,768 pixel (almost 20x30 at 300dpi) file, JPEG saved from cropping the ~150MB image at 100%.

Comparison image: one of the four source RAW files, processed in Raw Developer with the same parameters and output to the same pixel dimensions, then went through the same operations in Photoshop.

To me, the "super-resolution" does not really matter that much, but the much less artifacts at the 200% level is impressive, as well as the much more natural looking and the improved dynamic range.  Remember we are looking images through the demosic process, and at 200% level. Much better than Q-Image or Genuine Fractals, to my eyes.

Here is the Wiki entry of the process with an impossible-looking example:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super-resolution

Cheers,
Leping
« Last Edit: December 08, 2007, 03:53:35 PM by LEPING » Logged

melgross
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« Reply #35 on: December 08, 2007, 09:47:40 PM »
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I think this is broadly true although the reason is not necessarily that the pixels of the higher rez camera are smaller, when different formats are being compared.

I always remember my surprise when I first read the review of the 1Ds at dpreview comparing its noise characteristics with the earlier Canon D60. Up to about ISO 400, noise in the 1Ds was actually slightly worse than the D60, yet the 1Ds had bigger pixels.

Of course, when dpreview compares noise, they compare it on a pixel-for-pixel basis; grey patches of equal size.

But the point was made by dpreview that this apparent lower noise of the D60 would not be evident in equal size prints and I'm sure those who used both cameras would have been very much aware that the 1Ds had lower noise in practice.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=158968\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes. This is pretty much what I'm saying. The greater rez of the original 1Ds over the D60 would tend to make the noise less apparent at the same image size.

Of course, being able to shoot at 12,800, or 25,600, would tend to result in less noisy pictures than a higher rez camera that can't shoot at those speeds at all.
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« Reply #36 on: December 08, 2007, 11:15:05 PM »
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To me, the "super-resolution" does not really matter that much, but the much less artifacts at the 200% level is impressive, as well as the much more natural looking and the improved dynamic range.  Remember we are looking images through the demosic process, and at 200% level. Much better than Q-Image or Genuine Fractals, to my eyes.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

We seem to be talking about similar technology here but perhaps used in a different way. I posted a comparison of shots of my hotel room in Krabi on another thread with a tongue-in-cheek title about reducing D3 low-noise envy.

The problem is essentially this. You want to photograph a poorly lit scene with a fairly extensive depth of field where flash will not do because distant object will be severely underexposed, and/or, near objects will be severly overexposed.

Fortunately, the scene is pretty static so no problem. You use a tripod, a slow shutter speed and f11 for good DoF.

But what happens if you are not carrying a tripod. It's my experience that most people do not carry a tripod most of the time. I don't, although I have one in my room. With a camera slung around my neck and a couple of lenses in my photographers' vest, I find it very inconvenient and cumbersome to also carry a tripod.

It seems that stacking in 'mean mode' with CS3E has now provided another option in such situations. If, for a hand-held shot of the scene at the sort of aperture necessary for good DoF, it becomes necessary to use ISO 256,000 (ISO 3200 underexposed 6 stops), then a burst of 6 or 7 shots with the 5D at the same shutter speed could provide a usable image, provided the dynamic range of the scene was not great.

Check out my thread at [a href=\"http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=21343]http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....showtopic=21343[/url]
« Last Edit: December 08, 2007, 11:22:06 PM by Ray » Logged
Ray
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« Reply #37 on: December 09, 2007, 12:35:42 AM »
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Of course, being able to shoot at 12,800, or 25,600, would tend to result in less noisy pictures than a higher rez camera that can't shoot at those speeds at all.
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One would certainly expect this to be the case, but often things are not what they seem to be. For example, the D3's ISO 12,800 and 25,600 settings are apparently bogus. The purpose of having them is (presumably) to make assessing correct exposure in the histogram and the camera's LCD much easier. The jpeg image has been adjusted, in-camera, despite real and actual underexposure. Without such settings, one would be squinting at apparently underexposed shots in the camera's LCD and trying to judge if the shot was really too much underexposed or not.

I think also the purpose of these ultra high ISO settings relates to ISO bracketing. I'm not sure about the features on Nikon cameras, but I believe they've had ISO bracketing for a while. Of course you can't bracket an ISO which doesn't exist.

For example, if I take a shot with my 5D at ISO 3200 and the histogram and highlight flashing tell me I've overexposed, I've ruined the shot. If I need a particular combination of aperture (for DoF) and shutter speed (to freeze the action or camera shake), then autobracketing of exposure is not a good option.

Without ISO bracketing there can be a disadvantage in using an 'ersatz' ISO setting.

Since Nikon is now offering these 2 ultra-high settings which are really underexposures, it's quite likely they have built in a level of noise reduction to make them more acceptable. Once detail has been lost through in-camera noise reduction, it cannot be regained.

However, there is now a way of reducing noise, not only without destroying some degree of resolution, but with actual enhancement of resolution.

I'm suggesting here that using such stacking processes with ultra-high ISO shots, the D3 might not even equal the 5D. It's something which I think should be tested.
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Leping
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« Reply #38 on: December 09, 2007, 01:40:47 AM »
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Since Nikon is now offering these 2 ultra-high settings which are really underexposures, it's quite likely they have built in a level of noise reduction to make them more acceptable. Once detail has been lost through in-camera noise reduction, it cannot be regained.

However, there is now a way of reducing noise, not only without destroying some degree of resolution, but with actual enhancement of resolution.

I'm suggesting here that using such stacking processes with ultra-high ISO shots, the D3 might not even equal the 5D. It's something which I think should be tested.
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Ray,

All manufacture's streched ISO's are, just you mentioned, streched from the real ISOs, and the D3's is no difference.  What I don't understand is why do you think what your 5D can do (handhold multiple exposure stacking) the D3 would not.

If you exam available example carefully you see D3's high ISO NRs kept most of fine details, when processed in Capture NX.
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NikosR
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« Reply #39 on: December 09, 2007, 03:45:05 AM »
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Ray,

Pls. explain your use and the justification for using therms ' apparently bogus' and 'underexposures' when refering to the D3's implementation of the high sensitivity settings (High1 and High2 not calibrated 12800 and 25600).

If what you're saying is that the camera at these settings just digitally amplifies the signal rather than amplifying in in the analogue domain, you might be right or partly right, but your use of the term 'underexposure' is not appropriate I believe.

Furthermore, this issue is not new with these cameras as all cameras that I know off behave similarly in their respective uncalibrated high sensitivity settings.
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Nikos
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