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Author Topic: High MP "stress"  (Read 7428 times)

jrista

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2011, 10:12:06 PM »
thanks all very interesting info
so for example shooting an event in low light with a 5D mk2 and going to mRAW will give me equivalent resolution to say my 1Dmk3 however i could bump the iso up to 6400 and get lower noise images than if i was shooting at 6400 in full RAW? i usually wont shoot above 3200 if i can help it but if mRAW opens up 6400 as "usable" that would be pretty nice even with a loss in resolution.

With mRAW, you would get an image about 10.5mp in resolution, so ever so slightly more than the 1D III. At any ISO level, you should see an improvement to noise. I have not actually tried shooting my 7D with mRAW @ 6400...I'll give that a try as one of the samples. I would expect it to provide better noise characteristics, since every output pixel's luminance (which is usually where that grainy noise comes from) is always processed from a full quad of bayer pixels. I am not really sure how color noise would be affected...it might be less, it might be the same...I haven't really looked for aspects of that so far. Generally speaking, though, yes, noise characteristics with mRAW should be better, and at worst, the same. I've been testing at lower ISO settings (I've only had the 7D for a little while, and I couldn't use the max ISO1600 on my 450D as it was truly horrid...I'll have to get used to 3200 and 6400 now.)

I guess it should be stated that with m/sRAW, you no longer actually have a true RAW format with original sensor data. Technically speaking, you could replicate the processing the camera does for m/sRAW on a computer with a native RAW format, since it really boils down to demosaicing the pixel data in a certain way. With the much greater processing power of a PC at your fingertips, the marginal improvements mRAW offers over RAW could be turned into significant improvements. There are some open sourced RAW processors, like DCRAW, that give programmers direct access to native RAW data in a huge variety of RAW image formats. I am not sure exactly what capabilities it has, but UFRaw might let you fine-tune the RAW processing of your photos to optimize the benefits that alternative RAW processing techniques might offer.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2011, 10:24:24 PM by jrista »
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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2011, 10:12:06 PM »

dr croubie

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2011, 11:12:01 PM »
thanks all very interesting info
so for example shooting an event in low light with a 5D mk2 and going to mRAW will give me equivalent resolution to say my 1Dmk3 however i could bump the iso up to 6400 and get lower noise images than if i was shooting at 6400 in full RAW? i usually wont shoot above 3200 if i can help it but if mRAW opens up 6400 as "usable" that would be pretty nice even with a loss in resolution.

Not sure where the thread went, but i did a comparison of this in another thread, here's 2 images at ISO6400 from it.
Both 7D, same lens and focus etc, 0 NR on all, standard picture style and sharpness 3.
First image shot in full 18MP RAW, processed in DPP, shrunk to 1/4 the size in the 'convert and save' dialogue, and a 500x500 crop taken.
Second image shot in 4.5MP sRAW, dpp processed and 500x500 crop taken.

For my money, the full-sized RAW file shrunk to 4.5MP looks better.
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wickidwombat

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2011, 11:18:40 PM »
thanks for the comparison i think i agree with you the high res shrunk one looks a little cleaner, not much mind you but a little
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jrista

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #18 on: December 13, 2011, 12:13:05 AM »
Thanks for the samples Croubie. Swapping back and forth between those two, I see two things. For one, noise seems to be roughly the same...finer and more of it in the RAW, coarser and slightly less in the mRAW. Second, the mRAW definitely has sharper details. You can see it in the tomatoes, the tomato leaves, the fern, and in the grass. The details are not as fine, but they are better defined.

The noise benefit at ISO6400 doesn't seem to be as much as I noticed at lower ISO levels, though...seems to be more chroma noise. Bit of a bummer.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2011, 12:14:41 AM by jrista »
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te4o

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #19 on: December 13, 2011, 02:10:56 PM »
Just woke up and opened this thread again:
THANK YOU JRISTA AND DRCROUBIE for putting this information together - very detailed and logical - I admit my subconscious more like superstitious fear of a high MP camera has disappeared.
Would be really great if Canon brings it on the market. At least people can compare and choose - after this explanation I guess 2/3 of the ISOists will look gravely into changing their opinion and give it a fair go ...
« Last Edit: December 13, 2011, 02:12:56 PM by te4o »
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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #20 on: December 13, 2011, 04:37:55 PM »
Retouchers... All the clients who are going to be unhappy with their headshots because every wrinkle and wart will be there in all their glorious detail.

jrista

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2011, 05:08:55 PM »
Retouchers... All the clients who are going to be unhappy with their headshots because every wrinkle and wart will be there in all their glorious detail.

Well, either that, or use a net/mesh filter, or pick up a soft-focus lens. The latter two sound like less work to me. ;)
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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #21 on: December 13, 2011, 05:08:55 PM »

jrista

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #22 on: December 13, 2011, 07:29:36 PM »
@wickedwombat: I did some experimentation with m/sRAW today. With just a minimal amount of fiddling, I was able to make the full-size RAW scaled down to m/sRAW size look pretty much just as good. At higher ISO's, noise looks different, often better, because its coarser...it looks like there is less of it, even though its roughly the same.

One thing I did learn, however, which has turned me off of m/sRAW a bit...is that it does NOT behave like a real RAW image when you need to make any kind of extreme adjustments. In Lightroom, if I adjust exposure settings, curves, noise levels, etc. more than a medium amount, the m/sRAW formats start to show their limitations. The problem there is that they have already been demosaiced and converted into RGB pixels. RGB pixels do not have nearly the leeway the original bayer pixel data does in a true RAW image.

While I think there are some benefits to using both mRAW and sRAW, particularly the clarity and definition of details (which gets preserved better with those formats strait out of the camera than with the native raw), if you want to preserve the ability to recover highlights and boost the darkest shadow tones, you'll want to keep shooting in full RAW. Perhaps a format can be created in the future that will behave like a RAW while making better use of bayer pixel data, but for now, m/sRAW definitely have their limits.
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wickidwombat

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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2011, 09:44:50 PM »
@wickedwombat: I did some experimentation with m/sRAW today. With just a minimal amount of fiddling, I was able to make the full-size RAW scaled down to m/sRAW size look pretty much just as good. At higher ISO's, noise looks different, often better, because its coarser...it looks like there is less of it, even though its roughly the same.

One thing I did learn, however, which has turned me off of m/sRAW a bit...is that it does NOT behave like a real RAW image when you need to make any kind of extreme adjustments. In Lightroom, if I adjust exposure settings, curves, noise levels, etc. more than a medium amount, the m/sRAW formats start to show their limitations. The problem there is that they have already been demosaiced and converted into RGB pixels. RGB pixels do not have nearly the leeway the original bayer pixel data does in a true RAW image.

While I think there are some benefits to using both mRAW and sRAW, particularly the clarity and definition of details (which gets preserved better with those formats strait out of the camera than with the native raw), if you want to preserve the ability to recover highlights and boost the darkest shadow tones, you'll want to keep shooting in full RAW. Perhaps a format can be created in the future that will behave like a RAW while making better use of bayer pixel data, but for now, m/sRAW definitely have their limits.

cool thanks for the feedback :)
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Re: High MP "stress"
« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2011, 09:44:50 PM »