JPEG Resolution Question

Leedsgreen

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Jul 7, 2010
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Dear All,

Whilst I know some reviews are critical of the GF1 jpeg engine, my sense is that this often concentrates on the colour rendition. Can anyone tell me how they find the jpeg resolution? What I mean is, in b&w how do the GF1 jpegs compare to the EP1/2/L1 in terms of image calrity, contract and resolution?

I know that when shooting RAW similar results can be achieved (with the GF1 perhaps offering even more detail) but I wonder about jpeg. For example, is it easy to change settings (i.e. contrast and sharpness) to get good results?

The reason I ask is that I'm trying to decide between pany and oly m4/3 cam. One use for the camera will be attched to my (400mm) refractor telescope (and with 2.5x barlow) for near full-frame shots of the moon. The image stacking program I use (to counter atmospheric turbulance etc) works on jpegs and whilst I could shoot RAW and then develop jpegs I would prefer not to have the hassle (I usually stack about 50 images at a time).

Thanks very much for any advice/help,

Nick
 

photoSmart42

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There's different film modes on the Panasonic cameras, several for color and several for b&w, all of which can be adjusted for contrast, sharpness, noise reduction, and vibrance. They can then be saved as custom pre-sets. Image clarity and resolution are a function of the lenses you put on the camera, so by those two accounts there would be no difference among the m4/3 cameras (the GH1 has a bit higher dynamic range and better ISO performance because it has a different sensor than the other cameras in the class). By adjusting the film modes I've been able to get the same brilliant JPEGs colors as I've seen from Olympus cameras on my GH1. I think for the most part users don't make an effort to adjust the film modes, and complain about the default colors on the Panasonic cameras.

I would suggest grabbing a GF1 manual off Panasonic's website and looking through it on the operation of the different film modes to see what the camera can do. I would bet you'd be satisfied by the JPEG output of the GF1 in b&w.
 

rpress

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The RAW from my GF1 is noticably sharper than the high-res JPEG.
 

photo owl

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The RAW from my GF1 is noticably sharper than the high-res JPEG.
surely that simply means your RAW conversion default sharpening is greater than your jpeg settings - nothing more.

overall you have the hardware capabilities of the image capture device (lens, AAF, sensor) and then the software - the latter can be in camera or out (or a combination of both) but doesn't inherently affect the capability - only the ease with which it's achieved etc
 

Iconindustries

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G'day Nick, I now shoot RAW with my GF1 but previously I used to shoot Jpeg. I fiddled around for ages and set the jpeg as my preset on the dial C1. I saved it as my Film 2 and the come out really good. So the settings I like are 'My film 2'
Contrast -2
sharpness +2
Saturation +2
NR +1

Here is an image I took with those settings just now to show illustrate. On my desk at night with my lamp on. The blacks as you can see are nice and this is at -2 any other I found was too stark. The saturation is nice and not overdone and I like most of my images sharp so +2 does the trick.

Hope this helps a bit, I've spent along time to come to these settings and I'm finally satisfied.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/50527022@N02/4801410132/" title="P1050915 by iconindustries, on Flickr">View attachment 147692"1024" height="575" alt="P1050915" /></a>
 

Leedsgreen

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Dear All,

Thanks very much for your informative replies, much appreciated. It looks like many folk are able to squeeze good images out of the jpeg engine. However, another thing that occured to me is using batch processing of RAW files as a quick way to develop jpegs if I wanted to go that route. This leads to another question! If one decides to shoot with a 1:1 ratio (or 16:9) does the saved RAW image have this crop size (like the jpeg) or does it always stay at 4:3?

Thanks for any more help,

Nick
 

Maczero

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I have been mucking about with custom jpeg settings in the GF1 and not really settled on a particular set yet. Are your settings based on the standard jpeg preset?

Andrew
 

rpress

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surely that simply means your RAW conversion default sharpening is greater than your jpeg settings - nothing more.
I guess - I use rawdrop/dcraw to convert, I don't think it applies any sharpening. You can see that files saved in RAW are clearer when zooming on just the camera LCD as well. I surely could be wrong I guess, try it for yourself.
 

photo owl

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I guess - I use rawdrop/dcraw to convert, I don't think it applies any sharpening. You can see that files saved in RAW are clearer when zooming on just the camera LCD as well. I surely could be wrong I guess, try it for yourself.
the image file you 'zoom in on on the camera LCD' is not the RAW data - it's an embedded jpeg file created by the camera jpeg engine from the jpeg settings.

there are many possible reasons that it appears clearer (than the image when you shot in a jpeg mode) - the most common is a miss match of resolutions and zoom ratios. It's a fairly common phenomenon and you will often see recommendations to shoot RAW + a particular jpeg setting if you want to review on the LCD - it's rarely the highest jpeg resolution either. It has no relevance to the final image sharpness or clarity.

RAW convertors do what you tell them to do, as do jpeg engines.

The only other factor that enters the equation is the NF setting - if this is not at 0, off etc then it will irreversibly remove detail elements. As long as that's off RAW and jpeg should both be capable of exactly the same levels of clarity and sharpness with appropriate processing.
 

Iconindustries

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I have been mucking about with custom jpeg settings in the GF1 and not really settled on a particular set yet. Are your settings based on the standard jpeg preset?
Maczero, I can tell you what I did in a bit more detail for you. Press the mem/set button and make sure you're at the top and REC mode. Slide across into film mode. Slide left again until you come across 'my film 1' or '2'. You will see you can adjust the contrast, saturation, sharpness and noise reduction underneath 'my film'.
I have them as
Contrast -2
Sat +2
Sharpness +2
NR +1

Once you've set them press the 'menu/set' button to set the settings. Now you can access 'my film' via the quick menu. I like the setting so much I set it as my custom preset on the dial C1. To set it as C1 it's really easy. C1 will set the camera the way you have the setting you see on the screen so when you move the dial to C1 the settings are alway the same. Make sure you like what you have set on the screen, like OIS modes, focus points jpeg setting ect then press 'menu/set' button. Move down to the C and the spanner icon. Slide right onto 'custom.set mem.' Slide right again onto C1 and press the 'menu/set' button again to set it.

It's not really hard to do and I keep it on my preset C1 all the time. If there is something that you would like to change on the C1 mode like the AF mode ect all you have to do is change it by the quick menu and then go back and set it as C1 again.


One other thing is that I have 'i exposure' setting on standard. Not sure what this does though.

Let me know if you decide to try the settings and I'd love to hear what you think of the pictures taken with them.

CU
icon
 

Iconindustries

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Dear All,

Thanks very much for your informative replies, much appreciated. It looks like many folk are able to squeeze good images out of the jpeg engine. However, another thing that occured to me is using batch processing of RAW files as a quick way to develop jpegs if I wanted to go that route. This leads to another question! If one decides to shoot with a 1:1 ratio (or 16:9) does the saved RAW image have this crop size (like the jpeg) or does it always stay at 4:3?

Thanks for any more help,

Nick
Yes, I do batch processing in RAW through Aperture. I get Aperture to add the various RAW special adjustments such as boost, moire, sharpening ect as it imports the images and then I batch processes the images with my custom presets in the preset tab. By doing this it adds all the other secondary settings and the finished photos I rarely need to adjust further.

I have my camera set on ratio 16.9 and my RAW images come out as 16.9, so I guess it does use the ratio you set.
 

Maczero

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Fife
Thanks for this. I have been trying these settings out and comparing them to what I use now, which is basically Dynamic with -2 dialled in on Contrast. (I have also tried Smooth with contrast and saturation boosted)

No real pictures yet (it is pouring here), but it strikes me your settings really punch up the greens. As I say, it isn't really the weather to test here at the moment, but I have saved the settings as my Custom 2 setting. I'll see how it works out. Thanks.

Andrew
 

rpress

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As long as that's off RAW and jpeg should both be capable of exactly the same levels of clarity and sharpness with appropriate processing.
JPEG is lossy compression. It will never be as good as RAW, information is lost in the compression of the image. The whole point of RAW is so that you don't lose any information from the camera sensor, from resolution to dynamic range to color space.

Lossy compression - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

ajm80031

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Denver, Colorado, USA area
Dear All,
If one decides to shoot with a 1:1 ratio (or 16:9) does the saved RAW image have this crop size (like the jpeg) or does it always stay at 4:3?
I have a GH1 and shoot in RAW. I use all of the different aspect ratios on occasion, and the RAW images maintain the chosen aspect ratio when I open them in Adobe Camera Raw. This isn't something that's done after-the-fact by the in-camera JPEG conversion.

I would expect the other Panasonic G series cameras would do the same.
 

Ned

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Alberta, Canada
Dear All,

Whilst I know some reviews are critical of the GF1 jpeg engine, my sense is that this often concentrates on the colour rendition. Can anyone tell me how they find the jpeg resolution? What I mean is, in b&w how do the GF1 jpegs compare to the EP1/2/L1 in terms of image calrity, contract and resolution?
I don't think "resolution" is what you're trying to find. Where the Olympus JPG engine shines (over all other brands that I know of, not just Panasonic) is in minimal compression (1:2.7) and accurate color rendering. Resolution doesn't really equate to quality.
 
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