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Panasonic vs. Merrill and Fuji cameras

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Simone, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    Hallo,
    With a GX1 I shot an image, 14 times, at 160 iso, obtaining 14 RAW. Then I converted them to 14 TIFFs.
    In the left frame of the PNG image you can see at the given URL (it's a detail covering about a tenth of the original area), you can see ONE of them, very similar to the other 13 obviously. On the right the AVERAGE of 14 images to reduce the noise.
    As you can see, the noise on the left is terrible!

    In your experience, is it normal for GX1 and/or other digital cameras? When I see pictures taken with Sigma Merrill cameras, or expensive Fuji cameras, it seems to me that the image is smoother and sweeter than Panasonic cameras.
    :-(


    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1493778/Digital%20video%20noise%20demo%20Corelli.png
     
  2. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    A few comments...

    There is a performance gap (noise and DR) between the GX1 and current generation m4/3 sensors such as those found in GX7 or E-M5.

    I am not so sure that Merrill will have less noise than current m4/3 cameras, even at base ISO (and they actually have much more noise at higher ISO). Of course, they do have crazy amounts of resolved detail!

    The APS-C sensors will give you slightly better noise performance than m4/3.
     
  3. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    Could you tell us where to find a numerical comparison of the noise between GX1 and GX7?
     
  4. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    619
    Feb 15, 2011
    Toronto
    Not sure what you are getting at? Nearly impossible to provide you with any feedback with the information you have provided.

    Noise a function of great many things.

    Why did you choose iso160? (Base iso?) SHooting at base iso is usually to ensure maximum Dynamic Range.. but if a low dynamic range image or one of poor contrast.. it isn't necessarily the best setting to use.
    Did you shoot in manual or P,A,S mode?
    Did you end up underexposing the imaging and pulling it back in RAW processing???
    What were your exposure settings?
    Can you show us a full size image of the single shot and then the 14 averaged..
    Did you check out dpreview review of the GX1 and see what the noise profile was?

    Averaging off course will reduce noise.. so no surprise there.

    As for your shadow noise for the single image at 160.. yes it can present itself like that if you pushed the exposure too much in a less then ideal lighting like what I barely can tell in that scene is the case. That said, it has nothing to do specifically with the GX1 though..
     
  5. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    619
    Feb 15, 2011
    Toronto
    As for Panasonic m43 vs. Merrill Fovean vs. Fuji APS sensors:

    Your comparing OLD m43 Panasonic sensor vs. APS sensors so of course naturally the pana will be a bit handicapped. Its really only been the latest GENERATION m43s sensors (GX7, OM-D, EP5/PM2/EPL5) that are really good enough to start comparing pixel peepers to very good APS ones like Fuji and Merrill (only at base iso). Its well established the older gen m43s were not the best at hoise, but was good enough for many (myself included).

    Merrills quickly get noisey when you ramp the ISO.
    Fuji's handle noise extremely extremely well and its one of their trademarks. Only real issue with Fuji is movie and slowish AF (albeit improved now with their latest firmware release).
     
  6. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
  7. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    In the nut: I'm disappointed by the amount of visible noise in the GX1 (at base ISO!).

    Thanks krugorg, very interesting web page!

    Answers to the LovinEp2's questions:

    1) I think that lower the ISO, lower the noise. It'sn't?

    2) Manual, A, P, or S mode? Does it change the noise, when the shutter speed and aperture is the same? It was A.

    3) No post processing. Only a batch conversion from raw to uncompressed tiff.

    4) Exposure settings: f/4, 1/4 s, 160 iso.

    The question is: increasing the light in the ambient and consequently reducing the shutter speed time to have the same result, would have improved the S/N ratio? I thought that it was equal, or the opposite...
    Does the kind of light change dramatically the noise? How?

    Here a link to a jpeg giving the idea of the crop I did to show the noise in the first message of this thread:
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/1493778/reference%20jpeg%20dalla%20macchina%20P1040516.JPG

    Notice that this jpeg image I shot for comparison purposes was created by the camera and feature a very good artificial noise reduction when compared to the raws, that's perceptually in the middle between ONE of the 14 raw images and the averaged image.
     
  8. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    There exists a digital camera under 1200 us dollars with 15 (or more) dB more s/n ratio when compared to the GX1?
     
  9. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    619
    Feb 15, 2011
    Toronto
    1. Low ISO isn't necessarily lowest noise.. basically a longer shutter then needed can introduce noise even at low ISO in my experience. Sometimes, it's better to up the ISO then to increase the shutter speed to get the cleanest image. You need to experiment with your camera and see what works best for your camera. If you're gonna stack images, there is no need to go beyond 5-7 to be honest, the additional images have very minimal returns for noise reduction but can add unwanted blur if not taken in a non static controlled studio enviroment.

    I would try your shot a again and limit your ISO highest of 800 in the menu system and shot it in A mode again, but let the camera select the shutter and ISO value. Then try Manual mode using the same exposure but decreasing the ISO to 160 and slowing the shutter according to get same exposure.

    Then you can see if it was your selecting ISO 160 was the issue. Always worked on multiple of your base ISO and avoid fractions as it can introduce additional noise. Is 160 native base ISO or pulled on the GX1...i dont know.

    2. I was just curious if you were shooting manual and selecting exposure yourself or if you let the camera do it but also, I was curious if you selecting too slow a shutter speed for the exposure if you were in S mode.

    3. Is F4 the sweet spot for that lens, probably 5.6 on a m43 lens. Consider closing down the aperature a bit if you want get the best possible image.

    IMO, the quality and type of light can have an impact on noise. Yes. The harder the camera has to work at collecting light, the more noise is introduced vs. noise introduced from amplifier downstream. If its high quality intense light that quickly saturates a sensor, then keeping ISO low is ideal. If its non natural light (tungsten, fluro etc) and not high intensity (lamps, overhead lighting etc) then I find it may be better to bump ISO 1 stop vs. slowing shutter 1 stop to minimize noise.

    The dropbox link did not work for me.
     
  10. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    Thanks for your reply.

    1. You say that "Low ISO isn't necessarily lowest noise". Interesting point! I want to do some esperiments.

    3. I think that the aperture of the lens isn't directly related to the noise.

    Dropbox link is ok for me using iPhone, and a different computer at office. Strange!
     
  11. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    619
    Feb 15, 2011
    Toronto
    Tried fil again and it loaded this time. More light then I expected.

    Aperture definitely doesn't but for test I'd use the lens at its best was all.