XT1 - Truly Superior IQ

Started Mar 29, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Re: XT1 - Truly Superior IQ
In reply to Sal Baker, Mar 30, 2014

Sal Baker wrote:

trueview wrote:

Sal Baker wrote:

Photo-Wiz wrote:

Sal Baker wrote:

That process is only testing your ability to consistently hold a camera with no movement. The "best" shots are only the ones that randomly had less motion and says nothing about the cameras being tested.

The reason why people test sharpness on a static image with a tripod is to remove the variables. Otherwise you are only documenting which camera might look sharper when the image is motion-blurred.


If we assume this is correct, and I use a tripod perhaps once every 5000 shots, then isn't this type of test meaningful for me as the user? Why wouldn't I want to know how sharp pictures will be with this particular camera in my hands? In the end, doesn't it matter more to know how the camera will behave in my hands, shooting in the manner in which I am accustomed (i.e. no tripod)?

I think the fact that I take a series of pictures of each object/scene with each camera, tends to reduce the overall impact of my own personal wobblyness (not sure if there is such a word) -- especially because in the end I compare the best pictures that each camera was able to take.

In this case, believe me I really wanted to like the GX7 better, because I could have saved a few hundred dollars. I was still in the period in which the XT1 was returnable. But I decided to keep the XT1 even though it cost more because it yielded significantly better results (at least in these hands of mine).

If you want to know which camera is sharper, remove the variables and test on a tripod. The only difference in shooting handheld is that you introduce possible motion blur. If you want to test to see which camera has sharper motion blur then test shooting handheld. As mentioned above, there's a difference between testing for absolute sharpness that a camera can produce, and testing one's ability to hold a camera steady.


When testing handheld, you are not just testing the sharpness of motion blur (a concept I fail to understand, by the way). You are testing how much motion blur a camera produces, due to shutter shock, other mechanical vibration (mirror motion, for instance), shake produced by the ergonomics of the shutter release, etc.

here's an example : a hasselblad or a rolleiflex can both produce very sharp results, but unless you use high shutter speed the rollei is likely to produce sharper results handheld due to the absence of mirror.

Wether this applies to the present comparison, I don't know as I own neither camera. But what I am trying to say is that if you are going to use a camera mainly handheld, it makes a lot of sense to test it handheld, as what you are interested in is not absolute sharpness, but sharpness attainable taking into account the mechanical vibrations produced by the camera.

for instance, when I use my 5d3 handheld on relatively static subjects, I switch to silent mode as it significantly reduces shutter and mirror shock. It makes a visible difference in sharpness at lower speed.

Or the x pro 1 produces a bit more shutter shock then a Leica m6 (easy to compensate with higher ISO setting on the x pro 1)

But then you will never know which is motion blur from hand holding the camera and which is mirror shock. Testing the sharpness of motion blur is a silly concept, but that's what is happening when absolute image sharpness is tested with hand held techniques. First, test on a tripod to see the max sharpness a camera/lens can render at a given aperture. Then, compare how closely you can get hand holding the camera. That's a very good difference to know IMO, and a better way to compare two cameras for sharpness performance.

Yes, but please let's make a distinction between 'motion blur' and 'camera shake', which are really very different things.

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