Dynamic Range: D5100/D7000

Started May 21, 2011 | Discussions thread
rhlpetrus
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Zane's shots, a question about the spotmeter calibration to you and ENO
In reply to Zane Paxton, May 24, 2011

The first one is very very impressive, the other are also good examples. I agree with you and Eduardo, at ISO100 the D7k is really outstanding regarding it's ability to recover shadow detail.

I want to get your views on this: at least my sample seems to have a different calibration re spotmetering than I'm used to. If you center the exposure scale with SM, I get the central peak to the right of the midvalue of 127 for the histograms. That's pretty consistent across the color range. A simple way to test it is to put a piece of white paper against a dark background, SM it and check histogram. Consistently I get the peak at 1/3 to 2/3 above central line, with the D80 I get exactly centered.

It's not a shutter calibration, the exposure is actually higher on the D7k. Have you both tested your spotmeter readings on the D7k?

Then I check how far I go with exposure up until blinkies start to show: same distance for both, about 2 1/3 stops. But when I add the extra 1/3-2/3 stop I started with for D7k, that means that from same reference, D80 gives 2 1/3 stops of distance from midtone to clipping and D7k gives 2 2/3 to 3 stops.

We know the blinkies actually appear before RAW clips, so the RAW file has more than that. In my tests I found that going 2/3 above clipping point with D7k still provides for total color recovery, so that's a practical 3 1/3-2/3 HLs range from midtone.

If you couple that with the LLs' recovery abilities of the D7k, which seems to go forever, as Zane and others have shown, including Eduardo's test showing it keeps colors and noise better than D700 in that respect, we have an outstanding tool for high DR shooting. I'm pretty confident of sending bright clouds in a landscape to +2 2/3 stops over central reading with spot on my D7k (which is at least 3 stops up from typical midtone rendition, as I mentioned) and still recover detail and color balance fully.

Now try to do that to a D80. A D300/D90, well, I can't do it, but I think the D7k beats them as well.

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Renato.
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