What really matters to you?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by DaveEP, Dec 24, 2015.

  1. I'm a pixel peeper, the pixels have to be top quality or I can't enjoy the image

  2. I look at the image first, but the pixels (noise etc) can get distracting

  3. I look at the image, the pixels don't matter unless there is something really obviously wrong

  4. It's the image that counts. The quality of the pixels are usually irrelevant

  5. Image image image. What are pixels?

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. DaveEP

    DaveEP Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 20, 2014
    I hope the title says it all really.

    Are you a pixel peeper or an image admirer?

    Do the pixels really matter, do they spoil your enjoyment of an image, can you look no further than a little noise and dismiss things based on the pixels alone?

    Can a noisy high ISO image still be good, or is it totally spoiled for you and it gets dismissed out of hand?

    Or do you look only (mainly) at the image and realistically the higher ISO noise mean very little as long as the image is good?
  2. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    Interesting question, oriented towards noise. I asked a similar question a while back, oriented towards lens sharpness (Poll: Being honest, do you really need pin-sharp lenses?). It will be interesting to compare the results.

    Personally, I view my photographic equipment as a box of tools I use to produce images. Limitations of the tools can compromise my images but it is the images, not the tools that are important. So: Image, image, image

    I am OK with admiring the equipment as art. A Hasselblad 500CM machined from a solid block of stainless, ... a Linhof Super Technika ... Those are works of art that I can admire simply for the pleasure of the object. But when they are used to produce images, they are simply tools. A poor image produced by a Hassie is still a poor image. Kind of along the lines of Ansel Adams: "There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept."
  3. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    I guess I'm No.2

    that said, I wouldn't hesitate to use ISO 25600 to get the image first.
    15092838252_ae6b7d2206_b. P8313511 by Kian j, on Flickr

    and with a bit of processing
    15601784059_5d975894cc_b. PB144186 by Kian j, on Flickr
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2015
  4. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Oct 14, 2010
    Well... A noisy picture is better than no picture at all (or a blurry one). But I do sometimes get distracted by excess noise so I'm the #2 type. :)
  5. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    I've just posted a link on another thread on this forum about "the greatest photograph in sports history". Plenty of noise in that photo.
  6. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    I appreciate images without consideration of pixel quality, noise, etc.

    But I also appreciate pixel peeping without consideration of the quality of the image.

    It's two separate hobbies for me. Three if you include gear for gear's sake.
    • Like Like x 3
  7. 50orsohours

    50orsohours Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 13, 2013
    Portland Oregon
    Most of the time I shoot landscape at low iso so image is what counts for me.
  8. DaveEP

    DaveEP Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 20, 2014
    I should perhaps add that this was started following a pretty long discussion with some local people regarding FF vs APS-C vs M43 vs P&S.

    Both the FF'ers were fairly new to photography, one went Nikon (D610), the other Canon (5D3) - so there was immediate posturing about which was better. One had been told by a 'friend' that Nikon FF was 'the only camera worth buying' and the other that Canon FF was 'the only true photographic tool' and that they could never make decent photographs using anything else. Neither of them had yet printed anything they'd shot.

    Then the Canon 7D guy popped his head up and said that FF was useless to him because he only shoots wildlife and needed the 'extra reach' of APS-C, and that FF was a waste of time. In fact, all other types of photography were boring and a waste of time.

    Oh boy. Deep bowl, long spoon, begin stirring.

    As I listened and watched with a wry smile, the conversation descended in to the usual shallow DOF arguments and then further in to the problem of high ISO 'noise' and 'pixel quality'. As the conversation ping-ponged back and forth I raised my hand, they all stopped in turn and looked at me as if to say "what?" I asked this simple question, what is most important, the image or the pixel?

    Their replies?

    The Nikon guy said "you can't have a good image if the pixels suck".

    The 5D3 guy said "noise is just so distracting I can't look at the picture"

    The 7D guy said "noise sucks, if there's any noise I delete it"

    • Funny Funny x 1
  9. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Whenever this topic comes up, I always direct people to go look at the pulitzer prize winning images from the past. They had manual everything film cameras and they often used high ISO films with a lot of grain structures. Pretty close to what we are dealing with for high ISO shooting today. That generally puts everything into perspective.
  10. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    I used to develop Tri-x in Rodinal. I just never liked the look of D-76 or HC-110. Noise doesn't bother me in a good image.

    Bad light, bad exposure, bad composition; these things bother me.

    • Agree Agree x 2
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