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Author Topic: improving IQ in landscape  (Read 4934 times)

chauncey

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improving IQ in landscape
« on: June 18, 2013, 12:12:33 PM »
Rather than using a WA lens which can lead to distortion, why not take numerous images with a zoom lens then photo-merge them together.
You will end up with a rather large image but, downsizing an overly large image will lead to a superior image, IQ wise.
Comments welcome!       ;)

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2013, 12:23:19 PM »
Landscape does not mean wide angle, some use 300mm.  It all depends on the subject.
 
Stitching images brings its own distortions, and a proper head + good stitching software is expensive, and unlike a lens, software has little or no resale value.  It does yield supurb results when done properly. 
A TS lens works well, but they are very expensive.  At least, they have resale value.
 
I'm sure there are lots of different takes on this,  and all have merit, I'd not argue with opinions because they have worked for the poster.
 
Lightroom 5 has some pretty good lens distortion and perspective correction, I'd like to see a wide angle expert post some corrected landscape images using the upright feature or the manual distortion correction.  You lose some of the image, but not as much as with stitching..
« Last Edit: June 18, 2013, 12:27:15 PM by Mt Spokane Photography »

ahab1372

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2013, 12:46:53 PM »
That has been done already, I read about a project that created a gigapixel image of the Mount Everest that way.
As Mt Spokane said, it is not necessarily trivial

SwissBear

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2013, 02:39:04 PM »
Stitching stuff with no foreground is a rather easy process, i shot some panos with 150mm from a tripod without any pano head and stitched it together on my laptop with hugin.
But with such a easy setup its mandatory that the nearest object is far away, i think safe would be some half mile or further. The only drawback is that it weakens the composition possibilities.

The other fun part in stitched "gigapanos" is the part where you zoom in - and for that again a good lens is important.

But i cant deny, if something "doesn't fit by a small margin", a stitch of 2 or 3 images can easily be done, and if its only vertical transition and the upper part of the lowest picture goes over the half mile limit, it even can be done handheld.
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Rienzphotoz

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2013, 01:04:22 AM »
Although I do like post processing, I get tired in about 30 minutes of it at a stretch ... but I enjoy shooting even if it is all day long ... Panos as nice as they are require a great deal of editing which is time consuming ... I don't mind doing it once in a while as a novelty but I would not enjoy post processing panos as much as I enjoy shooting out there. I envy those with the patience to spend a lot of time in editing those incredible detailed panos. 
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SwissBear

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2013, 04:19:28 AM »
my patience normally ends when hugin throws some "out of memory" messages... ;)
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Fleetie

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2013, 07:32:33 AM »
See also The Brenizer Method:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brenizer_method

You can use it to get "wide angle" images as though they were taken with a very fast (low f-number) wide-angle lens, so you can get a lower DOF than would be possible with a real wide-angle lens.

Think about it: Stitch together 3*2=6 images taken with a 70-200 f/2.8 wide open, or maybe a 135/2.0.
You get the same DOF with the final image as you do per component photograph.
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insanitybeard

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2013, 12:18:42 PM »
Not wishing to dispute/discount the O.P's suggestion but it isn't always possible to use this technique- some of the most photogenic landscapes involve rapidly changing light and conditions which could not be accurately captured in the amount of time necessary to position and capture multiple frames.
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Rocky

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2013, 12:24:06 PM »
Rather than using a WA lens which can lead to distortion, why not take numerous images with a zoom lens then photo-merge them together.
You will end up with a rather large image but, downsizing an overly large image will lead to a superior image, IQ wise.
Comments welcome!       ;)
It sounds very easy ON PAPER. In reality it is not an easy task. In the overlapping area of the two images, everything must be identical, otherwise you will have "ghost image" on the element that are not identical. In landscape shooting, if there are any movement of the grasses, leaves, branches due to wind. you will not have identical image in the overlapping area. You will end up with ghost, especially in pixel level.  If the picture has a stream, then all bets are off.  the flowing water will become the "ghost" in the overlapping area.
You can spend hours to make it almost perfect. Is it worthy of your time?? I only do photo stitching if I do not have any other option, or do it just for the fun of it. Using an UWA  ( with tilting) is still the best option.


pdirestajr

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2013, 01:54:11 PM »
Here is a 40,219 x 11,522 shot taken with my motorized head:

Great Falls by scrappydoggy, on Flickr

The moving water was a nightmare from a blending standpoint.  The photomerge in CS5 was otherwise easy, albeit time consuming.

There is something odd about this image though- like the white balance changes from a greenish cast on left to a magenta cast on the right. Or it could just be my monitor.
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Aglet

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2013, 02:59:56 PM »
There is something odd about this image though- like the white balance changes from a greenish cast on left to a magenta cast on the right. Or it could just be my monitor.

agreed
perhaps AWB was used during the shot.
Any stitching work should be done fully manual exposure and WB settings to maintain as much shot-to-shot consistency as possible.

A friend of mine likes doing his landscapes with long lenses and 10MP crop body instead of spending big money on lenses and hi res FF body.  Results are excellent but takes him hours compared to minutes for single shot or only a simple 3 to 5 shot pano.  I don't have the patience for panos any more, I did a few that way when I was using crop bodies.  Rarely resort to it now.

For prints under 36" it's rarely worth the trouble if you have a good body with with >20MP.
If you have a lower rez body then this is a reasonable compromise if you don't have to deal with changing light or shifting subject matter.

Haydn1971

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2013, 05:02:59 PM »
Nice pic, the colour cast is probably more to do with the ND filter and the way the light is filtering through it than the AWB - I'm pretty sure that someone who has gone to the expense of buying a motorised head isn't going to make a AWB school boy error !
Regards, Haydn

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Aglet

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2013, 08:50:04 PM »
Nice pic, the colour cast is probably more to do with the ND filter and the way the light is filtering through it than the AWB - I'm pretty sure that someone who has gone to the expense of buying a motorised head isn't going to make a AWB school boy error !

boo-boos can still happen to the best intentioned..  ;)
I haven't used an ND on a wide pano so haven't seen this effect from an ND as such.
FWIW, no CPL filters for wide angle pano work either.

noisejammer

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2013, 11:01:10 PM »
I tend to limit my ultra-wide angle shots to what can be achieved by shifting my TS-E. The TS-E 17 can produce a 60Mp image corresponding to a 12 mm lens. In all honesty, the atmosphere is seldom clear enough to warrant much more. The RRS L-frame has indicators showing you how far to move the camera to compensate for perspective.

I have tried some 3-5 frame wide angles with my 35 mm.... This is dead easy unless you have a lot of foreground when the effects of perspective mess things around.

The single time I attempted a multiple frame using a long lens (I think it was 24 frames with a 100/2 MP) I missed a sliver out... but only discovered it when I got back from Africa. There was lots of wailing and gnashing of teeth....

Rocky

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Re: improving IQ in landscape
« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2013, 11:09:14 PM »
Here is a 40,219 x 11,522 shot taken with my motorized head:

Great Falls by scrappydoggy, on Flickr

The moving water was a nightmare from a blending standpoint.  The photomerge in CS5 was otherwise easy, albeit time consuming.

There is something odd about this image though- like the white balance changes from a greenish cast on left to a magenta cast on the right. Or it could just be my monitor.
Nice work. Both pictures have re-enforce about ghosting that I have mentioned. Just look at the rocks that are next to the water. You can see it. Some rocks are broken up some are lighter color without a sharp edge.