A55 Does Not Do "HDR"

Started Aug 27, 2010 | Discussions thread
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Stuart
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A55 Does Not Do "HDR"
Aug 27, 2010

Contrary to what many on this forum think, the A55 does not do what most refer to as "HDR" photography. What the camera does, like the smaller siblings from Sony earlier in the year, is to extend the dynamic range of the sensor by superimposing images at different exposures. The result is not what people see when they look at what is usually called an HDR photo. Rather, it will be an extremely flat image that you will probably not like unless the original scene was very very contrasty. See the pic in the DPREVIEW test. Conventional HDR results require tone-mapping on a computer.

Real HDR must use the cameras auto-bracketing. This camera appears to have been crippled insofar as this goes. The auto-bracketing appears to use only 3 steps of 1/3 or 2/3 stops. This means that for most real HDR shooting, you will need to manually keep track of and change the exposure. Even with the camera on a tripod, there can be enough movement to degrade registration and the process is anything but fun. My guess is that Sony has a more "pro" model coming that will incorporate the needed auto-bracket. Here is a list of cameras arranged by HDR capabilities:

http://hdr-photography.com/aeb.html

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