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Author Topic: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100  (Read 16485 times)

AndyG

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Yesterday I did a quick comparison (video mode/indoors) between a Canon 60D and a Nikon D7100.

I put Sigma 17-50mm F/2.8 O.S. lenses on each camera. I also shot for a few minutes with the same Zeiss 50mm F/2 Makro-Planar ZF Lens on both cameras.

The Nikon D7100 has a lot of advantages - dual card slots, headphone jack etc, but I was primarily interested in seeing how it handled the most frequent scenario I encounter for DSLR filming:
Handheld - Stabilized Lens - Zacuto Z-Finder - Moderately Low Light.

I barely got started before I discovered 2 problems regarding the Nikon D7100.

Problem #1 - Zooming In To Focus on the Nikon D7100:
On the Nikon D7100 when you zoom in to focus - the image on the LCD screen is very blurry. The Nikon D7100 has more incremental steps than Canon’s 3x or 10x, but whether I zoom in (a little less or a little more than) the equivalent of 10x on the Canon 60D the results are the same - an image too blurry to focus accurately on the Nikon D7100.  The Canon 60D is much sharper when focusing this way.

Problem #2 - Poor White Balancing - Green Shift on the Nikon D7100
I focused on a Nikon Lens Box with both cameras set identically. First using Auto White Balance  and next setting them identically to 3700K. The Canon 60D looked perfect - representative of what I was seeing - whereas the Nikon D7100 had a very prominent green tint. Yikes.



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Marsu42

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2013, 03:27:07 AM »
Yesterday I did a quick comparison (video mode/indoors) between a Canon 60D and a Nikon D7100.


Converning lv focusing and zooming: This is where Canon blows away Nikon simply due to having Magic Lantern with all it's features, the main reason I got a 60d and not a Nikon d7000. If you don't know ml and go for video you should really have a look at ml (www.magiclantern.fm - it has more lv zooming options & even sharpens/constrasts the zoomed image for better manual focus).

As for awb, yes, I think it works good on Canon and I seldom see any magenta/green tint, can't tell about Nikon.

AndyG

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2013, 01:04:47 PM »
"well , then you need to WB against a qp-card etc to know what you are doing and to  se what you get, it tells nothing that you select a Kelvin number."

Ah No, I don't need to White Balance against a card to "know what I am doing".
I know exactly what I'm doing - I'm selecting identical Kelvin numbers for White Balance for each camera.

"It tells nothing"

Again No, it definitely tells me something. It tells me that Nikon's Auto White Balance or White Balancing by Kelvin number is terrible under the lighting I had set up. Canon is much more accurate.

"Was it RAW or JPG?"
If you had read my post you would realize I was filming (VIDEO!) no RAW or JPG.


Albi86

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2013, 01:18:55 PM »
"well , then you need to WB against a qp-card etc to know what you are doing and to  se what you get, it tells nothing that you select a Kelvin number."

Ah No, I don't need to White Balance against a card to "know what I am doing".
I know exactly what I'm doing - I'm selecting identical Kelvin numbers for White Balance for each camera.

"It tells nothing"

Again No, it definitely tells me something. It tells me that Nikon's Auto White Balance or White Balancing by Kelvin number is terrible under the lighting I had set up. Canon is much more accurate.

"Was it RAW or JPG?"
If you had read my post you would realize I was filming (VIDEO!) no RAW or JPG.

Ankorwatt's point probably was: you can see that they are different, but without a reference how do you know which one is correct?


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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2013, 01:45:42 PM »
AndyG, Interesting review ... what's your view on still photos on D7100 compared to 60D? coz I will be selling my D7000 & buy the D7100 sometime this year (it could happen as early as next month). Cheers
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2013, 01:46:31 PM »
Ankorwatt's point probably was: you can see that they are different, but without a reference how do you know which one is correct?

Well, I don't know about you - but when I'm looking at two images with obviously different WB, and I have the original physical object/scene which was imaged as a reference, which the OP clearly does, I have no trouble telling which WB is correct and which is wrong.

I think ankorwatt's real (not explicitly stated) point was that Nikon sensors are superior to Canon sensors, and if anyone is suggesting the opposite, it must be user error.
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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2013, 02:32:46 PM »
Ankorwatt's point probably was: you can see that they are different, but without a reference how do you know which one is correct?

Well, I don't know about you - but when I'm looking at two images with obviously different WB, and I have the original physical object/scene which was imaged as a reference, which the OP clearly does, I have no trouble telling which WB is correct and which is wrong.
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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2013, 02:32:46 PM »

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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2013, 05:45:22 PM »
not rely
the AWB in Canon and Nikon provides for the most similar estimations,  some motive handle Canon better and vice versa, that not the same as look at the LCD  back and state one are better than the other

So the rear LCD on a D7100 doesn't give an accurate color representation of the scene nor of the resulting image/video output.  Well...that's useful.  ::)
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2013, 07:30:47 PM »
I missed that it was video
make a real WB against a qp-card

Does it make sense that setting an identical Kelvin color temperature on different bodies would give different results? 
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3kramd5

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2013, 08:31:44 AM »
This
???

Sorry, I was curtly agreeing with neuroanatomist's post. I was incredulous at that notion that someone standing in lit a room with something can't see what it looks like (i.e. that he wouldn't know which camera is  right).

I missed that it was video
make a real WB against a qp-card

Does it make sense that setting an identical Kelvin color temperature on different bodies would give different results?

I think it would be reasonable to expect slightly different color handling between camera makes, if not even models within the same make. If these snaps of the rear LCD are representative of the actual output video, however, I'd have to assume something is wrong with this D7100.
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RLPhoto

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2013, 08:38:10 AM »
Green tinge with this gen of nikon cameras. Makes my 5Dc's green screen look up to date on nikon bodies.

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2013, 09:57:39 AM »
I missed that it was video
make a real WB against a qp-card

Does it make sense that setting an identical Kelvin color temperature on different bodies would give different results?

yes it does, because of the cameras  CFA, algorithm etc and  the light , different cameras response different to old or new light sources and Kelvin  , therefore it is always best to WB against a well known surface in the light you are in and   as for example a qp-card

Makes sense, thanks.

If these snaps of the rear LCD are representative of the actual output video, however, I'd have to assume something is wrong with this D7100.

Even if they're not representative of the actual output, I'd still say it's a problem, although not as bad.
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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2013, 09:57:39 AM »

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2013, 10:34:45 AM »
I missed that it was video
make a real WB against a qp-card

Does it make sense that setting an identical Kelvin color temperature on different bodies would give different results?

yes it does, because of the cameras  CFA, algorithm etc and  the light , different cameras response different to old or new light sources and Kelvin  , therefore it is always best to WB against a well known surface in the light you are in and   as for example a qp-card

Can you explain why Kelvin color temps are not the same (as far as the final image is concerned)?  Let's work in an ideal world for the moment, Kelvin color refers to spectra distribution of light.  IN the process of setting the color temp, the electronics behind the sensor adjusts color response of the RGB channels.  Again in the ideal world both cameras would have internal color calibrations to cancel out any color bias introduced by the camera.

What am I missing - this is not an ideal world and Canon and Nikon have not done a good job adjusting their internal color calibration?  A (very) small difference would not surprise me, anything large is simply sloppy

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2013, 11:22:23 AM »
So, it seems, yet again, a bit of clarification is in order with respect to our latest Canon / Nikon flame fest.

First, all that white balance does is set linear multipliers for the individual channels. In order for a physical object in the real world to appear to have a neutral color under all light conditions, it must equally reflect all wavelengths of light equally. Most objects don't, which is why they have color. But a few objects, including some common and inexpensive ones, do. PTFE / Teflon does; get a roll of thread tape, and anything that appears to be a different color from it isn't white. (If it looks brighter, it's got fluorescent whitening agents added to it -- very common with papers and fabrics.) Tyvek (a common material for un-tearable envelopes) also shares this property. Polystyrene / styrofoam does, as well, but it's not quite as bright as the other two.

The spectral distribution of the light itself varies, and almost always even varies within the scene itself. There's much more blue in outdoor shadows than in direct sunlight; to understand why that's the case, look at the sky. As a result, a white object (such as a piece of PTFE) will result in an image recorded on your camera with a much higher ratio of blue to red and green when photographed in the shade than when photographed in direct sunlight.

Your eyes and brain, however, are wired to automatically re-interpret those color shifts on the fly, and the general perception is that the objects are the same color regardless of the actual light you're viewing them in. But, with a bit of practice, you can learn to see the differences in color from different light sources. And, for artistic effect, there's a lot to be said for slightly skewing your white balance in the direction of the actual light of the scene -- but that's another matter.

Most light sources are black-body radiators, and the color of the light emitted by a black-body radiator is very predictable and associated with a temperature. Heat something to 8,500°F (well past the boiling point of everything that comes to mind as I type) and it'll produce a glow very similar to sunlight. Heat it to a mere 4,000°F, which is what happens to the tungsten filament in an incandescent bulb, and you get the much redder color we know so well from indoor lighting.

When you set your camera's white balance to a color temperature, it uses a built-in lookup table (or whatever) to know that an object heated to that temperature will radiate light of such-and-such a distribution of colors and that, if the camera multiplies the three channels by these factors, they'll render neutral objects with equal RGB values. The catch, though, is that there aren't any perfect black-body radiators; though many objects are very close, all will have various bumps and dips in their spectral distributions.

But not all light sources are actually black-body radiators. Sodium vapor street lamps, for example, work by a completely different mechanism and only produce a single frequency of yellow light. Fluorescent lights work on a very similar principle, except they produce more frequencies of light -- but, again, generally in a pretty spiky distribution.

Your camera again has some pre-set values for some common light sources that again tells the camera to set a particular combination of linear multipliers that will result in a neutral object being rendered with equal RGB values. The catch here is that there's even more variation with non-black-body light sources.

That's where the manual white balance comes in. The idea is to take a picture of something that actually does have a flat reflective spectral response, and the camera calculates from that picture what multipliers are necessary to render it with equal RGB values. This gets you the closest of common methods, but it again has a catch: most objects that people use for white balance aren't very good candidates. That QP card that Mikael so loves to flog is a great example. For one, it's way too dark, meaning that the sample that the camera measures is going to have to average out the noise in the signal. That's especially a problem at higher ISO settings. But, worse, I'll bet you lunch that it doesn't have anywhere near as flat a spectral response as a $0.01 styrofoam coffee cup. Those things actually make far superior white balance targets to anything you can buy for less than a thousand bucks. And I mean that in absolute terms, too -- not just price / performance.

In the real world, though a coffee cup can get you very, very close to a perfect white balance, the only way to actually get it truly perfect is through ICC profiling in a process much too involved for me to discuss here. But the idea is to shoot not just a single target with a single color that's hopefully white, but rather to shoot a chart with a great many colors and to let special software calculate the various distributions of everything to figure out the actual value. Think of the difference between LensAlign and FoCal for an analogous comparison.

So, it's very reasonable to expect minor differences between white balancing algorithms from different cameras, especially considering the differences between sensor designs and what-not. But it's not reasonable to expect those algorithms to differ by more than a minor amount, and Nikon cameras are notorious for royally screwing up white balance in exactly the way the original poster has discovered. I'd go so far as to suggest that the cameras are unacceptable as shipped, though the problems should vanish in an ICC managed workflow.

Cheers,

b&

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Re: Canon 60D vs Nikon D7100 - 2 Problems I Noticed with the Nikon D7100
« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2013, 11:22:23 AM »