Thanks! Much appreciated!
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What's the price on the 1D?
What I find most interesting is the crappy quality of 90% of the photos that these anxious obsessives have posted here to get feedback. I'm talking about crappy composition, worthless lighting, impossible focusing situations, horrible white balance and basically most norms of decent photography violated in the service of complaining, worrying or hand wringing.
It simply means that for the supposed extra two stops of DR of the D800, the only brightness values that can actually be resolved are EV(-12 1/2), EV(-13) and EV(-14). Anything between EV(-12) and EV(-14) is quantized into one of these three EVs, so there is hardly any detail left, and certainly no gradations. Check https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Neighborhood_watch_bw.png, that is pretty much what is captured between EV(-13) and EV(-14).
From a use case perspective of using the extra DR to recover shadow detail, the 2-stop advantage in this context is nonexistant. And as such, using it as a metric for a sensor "score" is simply wrong IMO.
So if we make our interpretation a bit more conservative, DXO is claiming the D800 somehow magically gains around some 7500-8000 discrete tonal levels (or luminance levels) by the simple act of DOWNSAMPLING (as they claim, anyway)? Fishy. And even if that WAS somehow possible, whatever you "gain" is artificial...the camera itself is still the limiting factor when you press the shutter button and capture a scene, in which case the D800, according to DXO's "screen DR" results, captures somewhere around 13.8 stops of DR.
@V8Beast: I guess my point got lost in all the rest.
I wouldn't recommend using their numbers as a sole source of information, though...they DO tend to be rather odd at times.
I think this is right here demonstrates exactly why DXO has something to offer. Your opinion here is simply that...your opinion. If you actually held a poll about those two photographs, I would be willing to bet that you would NOT get a 90%/10% ratio, where most people could tell just by looking at those photographs which was which. I would bet such a poll would end up closer to a 60%/40% ratio.
That wouldn't be entirely because how each of us sees is subjective, but also due to the differences in computer screens, computer screen calibrations, etc. To me, those photos look relatively similar, however I have a calibrated screen tuned for post-processing photographs for final print. Because I print and judge my print qualities from how things look on-screen, the blacks in those photos look pretty even-keel. I'd be willing to bet, however, that one of them would indeed stand out as having "better" blacks if I viewed it with the screens I have at work, as they are calibrated for an entirely different purpose, and are a bit lower contrast (which would enhance shadow details.)
There is also the simple point that we don't know for sure how dark the deepest shadows are in the leaves of the trees of the 5DC shot. They may look "better" simply because they are not nearly as deep as the ones the 7D had to work with. That may be the case with all the 5DC shadows, where as the 7D may have had to deal with deeper shadows everywhere. You can't really make an objective comparison with two entirely different shots like that...you don't know for sure exactly how the shadows of each shot compare. You need a consistent, calibrated photographic source to properly measure the differences (even if they are "useless differences"), and that would be an area where DXO excels.
DXO mark publishes low-level measurements run through a standard set of mathematical formulas. While their numbers may seem odd, I find them valuable at times if for no other purpose than to demonstrate that physical hardware specifications make a picture not. The best example are DXO's MF camera ratings, which generally appear rather crummy compared to the latest and greatest from Sony, Nikon, and Canon. Empirically, modern-day digital MF sucks (regardless of niche.) Practically, they are still the best money can buy (by a long shot) for the niches they service.
Go to a club with the 5DIII one night, and a D800 another night, and see which one gets you more women. Be sure to take lots of sample images.
Are you related to wickidWombat
It's hard to take a man seriously who posts snapshots taken with $5,000 worth of gear.Actually, $3600 worth of gear...his sample photos use a 50mm f/1.8 on the front of the camera. Kind of hard to believe he doesn't have a better prime in his bag...or that his D800 review will use the Nikon 50mm f/1.8