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Regarding sensor size and dynamic range and Noise

Started May 22, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Mr Lumière
Junior MemberPosts: 47
Regarding sensor size and dynamic range and Noise
May 22, 2012

In another thread I realized people have a hard time understanding the rellation between sensor size and DR and Noise.

The general misconception is that FF sensors get 4x more light, which is true in absolute term. Since they are 4x larger however they get as much light per surface area as m43 sensors.

DR and Noise are the result of pixel size not sensor size, in certain case smaller pixels lead to better noise and DR, pixel-binning or resizing being the major reason. Usually at low ISO. At high ISO large pixels lead to better noise and DR simply because they absorb more light.

Conventionnaly larger sensor have bigger pixels so the general rule of thumb is that large sensor are better at DR and noise, however this is not because of the sensor size itself but rather because of the pixel size. The D800 has more noise per pixel, so why does it perform better than other sensor (according to DXOmark) because as DXOmark noted noise grain is smaller, once resized for print noise essentially disapear.

That was the simple version, here is the long version, very interesting read:


Nikon D800
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