Ricoh GR, Fuji 100s, or Nikon A?

Started Apr 21, 2013 | Discussions thread
wildeone
Regular MemberPosts: 463
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Re: Ray -- what are you really looking for?
In reply to Ray Sachs, Apr 24, 2013

Ray Sachs wrote:

wildeone wrote:

Ray,

i'm curious. i've seen a lot of what you've written, both here and on Serious Compacts... what i still don't know/understand is what you consider better 6400.

are you talking cleaner? because that usually, sadly, means in-camera NR (even with RAW).

Nope.

or are you talking about details and tonality retained (which typically result in noisier RAW images, allowing the user to control NR as they so choose)?

Yup

i'm not dissing you, i just don't understand where you're coming from... and i think it would be helpful to know what is important to you specifically, rather than the generic high ISO.

Basically, as much detail retained in whatever noise there is at 6400, and hopefully a fairly tight grain pattern, in raw. Neither of these cameras seem to have yet adopted the pernicious habit of adding NR to the raw files, as some makers have been doing - I'm not seeing any of those goofy NR artifacts in the high ISO raw files from either camera, which is a relief. My concern was based a couple of early reviews/previews that observed that the Nikon and GR were pretty even through 3200 but that the Nikon was notably, but not overwhelmingly, better at 6400. Based on playing around with the DPR test shot raw files, I think the only notable difference seems to be chroma noise, which is easily enough controlled. And once the chroma noise is brought under control, the luminance noise looks very very similar to me - I can't honestly tell the difference. Assuming this is my reaction when I shoot with both cameras and see some real world results, I'll very likely go with the Ricoh.

Bottom line, I was pretty impressed with the Nikon at ISO's up to 6400. I use that a fair amount to extend the DOF I can get in low light street shooting, where these great new sensors are making fairly effective zone focussing possible in very low light now. But every stop helps. I'm fine turning a lot of these shots into somewhat grainy B&W, but there's grain and then there's grain. I was impressed with the results I was getting with the Nikon raws for B&W, where I'm pretty tolerant of grain, and was surprised by some of the color shots, where i'm less tolerant. I'm looking to get the same basic quality out of the Ricoh. If I can, and I'm pretty optimistic, and the interface doesn't have any new gremlins in it from past versions (I don't expect it to, but they pulled a fast one with snap focus in the GRD4 that it took a while to work out with a firmware update), I'm almost certain to buy the Ricoh. Only if I can't get the same quality out of the Ricoh at higher ISO, and it would have to be a difference I could readily see, not just under extreme pixel peeping, am I likely to go for the Nikon...

I hope that clarifies...

-Ray
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/collections/72157626204295198/

cheers, Ray! that did clarify. and i hope you understand that i wasn't trying to be rude (and some of the old-timers on this thread know that).

i am a huge fan of the GRD (own the first three), but stopped shooting with it because i needed a bigger sensor to go with my Leica shots and the ability to shoot closer. i got the Fuji X100 which i love but rarely find myself using as it is just too big for a "pocket" camera. also, when shooting close, i found i really prefer 28mm.

mea culpa, but the Coolpix A never came on my radar. i've not been a fan of the lower end Nikon offerings in the past and so stopped looking. that said, i will be interested in your thoughts between the two.

for me, the Ricoh will forever my choice for a 28mm street cam. it feels right in the hand and i'm so familiar with the menus, that setting it up is a breeze. and i understand your concern (my own as well) about high ISO... i'm looking at the GR to allow me to shoot street even at night, stopped down (and shutter speed set) to get a decent amount in focus.

if i want shallow DOF, i will shoot FF with my f/1 lens... for me, the GRD always shined because i didn't have to fuss with it and everything i wanted was in (snap) focus.

as an aside, though, i really would be interested in your comparisons of shutter noise as well. i do want silent.

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