Got my K-x, very disappointed with indoor shots :( ... Need help!

Started Dec 18, 2009 | Discussions thread
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manuf
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Got my K-x, very disappointed with indoor shots :( ... Need help!
Dec 18, 2009

Hi all,

I have been reading this forum for a little while and have been impressed by the low light or high ISO shots (movies and stills) of the K-x, here and elsewhere. I must say that it is really important for me to avoid the use of flash as much as possible to keep the colors and mood as faithful as possible. Unfortunately, my shots with the K-x so far have been very disappointing, there's a pretty visible noise (colored) and lack of sharpness even at 800 ISO (maybe even at 400 ISO). I naturally thought that the photographer (i.e. me) was the issue, but after a few days of testing various settings and light conditions, I don't know what to think anymore. I have thought of a few possibilities to explain what happens:

A/ it's all the photographer's fault, he can't shoot or configure his camera (the best explanation, because hopefully I can learn)

B/ it's all the photographer's fault, he is expecting too much of the camera and doesn't understand what good high ISO performance mean, and he shouldn't expect miracles

C/ the camera is a lemon, something is wrong with the electronics (is that possible that noise creeps in because of that ... I mean has it been ever seen?)

Now here are a few crops of some disappointing shots, all indoor, but with some fair amount of natural light coming in and some indoor artificial light. Not perfect lighting, but much better that an evening totally indoor artificial light. The lens is the kit 18-55.

Here the face is supposed to be in focus (800 ISO, 18 mm, f/3.5, 1/80 sec):

Another part not to far from focus plane (800 ISO, 18 mm, f/3.5, 1/80 sec):

Another shot (800 ISO, 18 mm, f/3.5, 1/40 sec):

Another part of the second shot:

Are such shots not supposed to be seen at 100% crop anyway? I would obviously expect a bit of noise that degrades sharpness, but this redish pixelleting is nothing like I have seen from other shots with the K-x (even at higher ISO like 1600 or more). In addition, I must say that the video is horrible, with lots of noise too, when in similar lighting condition my basic Vado HD seems to do much better in noise reduction.

If I look at Image Resource or other sites, their results at ISO 800 or even 1600 are much smoother, less noisy (especially the colored noise, even in darker part of the image). The blacks are black, the hair is sharp, the pixellated out-of-focus background is not redish colored, etc ...

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/KX/FULLRES/KXINBI00800.HTM

Although I suspect that using 800 ISO in dark condition (but again, my scene where far from dark) and 800 ISO in a well lit scene (studio shots from IR?) does not necessarily leads the same results ... BTW, if I use the flash (which I was hoping to keep only for desperate situations), the results at ISO 1600 can be very sharp and noise free (although I have not studied them too much).

Well anyway, if anyone could spend a bit of his time to enlighten me, I would greatly appreciate. Oh, and if anyone feels like posting 100% crop of his pics with the K-x, or similar cams, so I can realize what I should expect and what I shouldn't, I would appreciate too.

Regards,

Manu

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