I'm shooting handheld indoors without flash with my 5D3 all the time these days, it seems. Shame on me, I know, but these are often social / performance events where the flash would not be welcomed.
In these situations, I leave the zooms at home and shoot either my trusty 50/1.4 or the surprisingly good new 28/2.8 IS. To avoid wide open softness, I am pushing ISO into 3200-6400 levels to allow either lens to be stopped down a bit. I won't lie that I push ISO even beyond 6400 periodically.
I am shooting RAW in these situations with the High ISO NR turned off as it seems to do nothing to RAW files (I presume it's a JPG-only feature?).
I generally prefer capturing sharpness + detail with noise than softening up the image by cranking up the noise reduction. That said, if I can chase the noise intelligently without much detail being sacrificed, I'd love to hear how.
Can folks on this fine forum please give advice on:
1) Best RAW processing parameters to managing noise in Camera RAW. I get lost on the five noise reduction sliders (Luminance, L Detail, L Contrast, Color and Color Detail) -- so pointers on which to use and when would be terrific.
2) Are there other settings in camera that are recommended for shooting in these indoor/handheld/low-light situations?
3) Is Camera RAW is the best tool for noise reduction work? Should I use another RAW handler? Does saving noise work for Photoshop to manage a better path to take? Advice appreciated!
Thanks for your help!