GH2 v OM-D DR test

Started May 16, 2012 | Discussions
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
GH2 v OM-D DR test
May 16, 2012

This has been a bit of a frost really.

I have a standard test I've been trying to find time to do for two weeks, finally did the shots yesterday.

It's the causeway to Faro Island. Stand under it, take shots, then try and PP the shadows underneath it up while keeping the blue in the sky.

So today I dropped the RAW shots in LR4, prior to giving you lot a go, and hit the slider.

This is a waste of time. Back In The Day I need a three stop bracket and Photomatix. Now both cameras just walk it. There is no test here. Anyone who runs out of DR with either of these is either doing something specialised or is plain incompetent.

What's interesting is that Advent Sam is quite right about the GH2 and LR4. With LR3 you had no useful highlight recovery, with LR4, loads. You can't get detail back that wasn't there, so I can only conclude that LR3 was broken with the GH2 the way LR2 was broken with the E3.

I was quite certain that the OM-D+LR4 was a big step forward over the GH2+LR3. Use LR4 though and I really do not know. They both seem absolutely great, no worries.

Just for interest I'll try and find a harder real world test, but frankly DR is a non-issue with either camera.

And if you have a GH2 and are using LR3, please try LR4. Big difference.
--
http://www.flickr.com/photos/acam
http://thegentlemansnapper.blogspot.com

rare wolf
Contributing MemberPosts: 885
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

So ... how do you like Lr4's development and interpretation of color, GH2 v. OMD ... JPG v. Raw?
--
cheerios from the Avalon Peninsula, Newfoundland
http://www.michael.shaffer.net/albums.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to rare wolf, May 16, 2012

I prefer the OM-D colour signature. The GH2 has always looked a bit odd to me, although for my style of landscape shooting it really doesn't matter. I don't know whether careful presets and things would sort the GH2, it has never actually bugged me. But seeing the two side by side I can see which camera did which shot and I can see which is closer to reality. Both are set to vivid style settings.
--
http://www.flickr.com/photos/acam
http://thegentlemansnapper.blogspot.com

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Steen Bay
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,188
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

And if you have a GH2 and are using LR3, please try LR4. Big difference.

It's not just with the GH2. LR4 seems to be worth a try with all cameras.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=41483832

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Adventsam
Veteran MemberPosts: 4,983
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

This is a waste of time. Back In The Day I need a three stop bracket and Photomatix. Now both cameras just walk it. There is no test here. Anyone who runs out of DR with either of these is either doing something specialised or is plain incompetent.

What's interesting is that Advent Sam is quite right about the GH2 and LR4. With LR3 you had no useful highlight recovery, with LR4, loads. You can't get detail back that wasn't there, so I can only conclude that LR3 was broken with the GH2 the way LR2 was broken with the E3.

Sam

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Steen Bay, May 16, 2012

Which is a bit weird in my book - I mean it isn't rocket science, the thing just reads data and presents it as an image. You'd have thought the basics were sorted years ago. Perhaps LR3 was / is just a PoS, which would be a bit unfortunate all round.

Crazy. I don't know what to think.

Steen Bay wrote:

Louis_Dobson wrote:

And if you have a GH2 and are using LR3, please try LR4. Big difference.

It's not just with the GH2. LR4 seems to be worth a try with all cameras.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=41483832

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Adventsam
Veteran MemberPosts: 4,983
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Steen Bay, May 16, 2012

Steen Bay wrote:

Louis_Dobson wrote:

And if you have a GH2 and are using LR3, please try LR4. Big difference.

It's not just with the GH2. LR4 seems to be worth a try with all cameras.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=41483832

It is, its just that the order of improvement for gh2 and maybe other m43 was BIG; wheras the a55/nex5n which I had my own samples of were improved, suddenly the gh2 is in the same order!

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Just Having Fun
Senior MemberPosts: 3,869
Like?
I how it would do at ISO800?
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

I know from your posts you don't like to go above base ISO which is something everyone should strive for, but I wonder how the OMD would do with your test at ISO800? That is as high as I go because with the fast lenses and IBIS I can keep the ISO down even in low light.

Anyway, I agree, the DR is as good as most people will ever need.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: I how it would do at ISO800?
In reply to Just Having Fun, May 16, 2012

At ISO1600 I've never met any camera that will stand the sort of heavy PP I use on maybe 10% of my landscapes. However, as you say, I use a tripod for that sort of thing anyway.

If you are not messing about, the OM-D is absolutely fine at ISO1600, shot below. Never tried it on the GH2, D3 was also fine, E-PM1 distinctly iffy.

The reason for the ISO1600 on the shot below by the way was because the boats were moving but I wanted the background and foreground in focus. So I was forced to shoot stopped down and at high ISO. Any softness will be the boats swaying a bit...

The sky has been pulled back to give the clouds a chance, but no way was I going to be able to get you a nice moon. I'd have needed 200 ISO.

Just Having Fun wrote:

I know from your posts you don't like to go above base ISO which is something everyone should strive for, but I wonder how the OMD would do with your test at ISO800? That is as high as I go because with the fast lenses and IBIS I can keep the ISO down even in low light.

Anyway, I agree, the DR is as good as most people will ever need.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
peevee1
Senior MemberPosts: 4,949Gear list
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

I have a standard test I've been trying to find time to do for two weeks, finally did the shots yesterday.

It's the causeway to Faro Island. Stand under it, take shots, then try and PP the shadows underneath it up while keeping the blue in the sky.

During the day? It is not standard as light will differ hour to hour even.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
zapatista
Regular MemberPosts: 249Gear list
Like?
Re: I how it would do at ISO800?
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis,

I may no agree with everything you say, but I very much appreciate your observations and technical viewpoint(s). The DR information is very useful. Thanks! Mike

 zapatista's gear list:zapatista's gear list
Fujifilm X-T1 Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R Fujifilm XF 60mm F2.4 R Macro Fujifilm XF 14mm F2.8 R Fujifilm XF 55-200mm F3.5-4.8 R LM OIS +2 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to peevee1, May 16, 2012

It's not intended to be a long term database, but if you shoot two cameras side by side there it generally gives you a challenge to PP and see which stands up better.

I have another, harder, one which is a cave in Alvor. I'll try that next time I'm that way.

peevee1 wrote:

Louis_Dobson wrote:

I have a standard test I've been trying to find time to do for two weeks, finally did the shots yesterday.

It's the causeway to Faro Island. Stand under it, take shots, then try and PP the shadows underneath it up while keeping the blue in the sky.

During the day? It is not standard as light will differ hour to hour even.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Timur Born
Senior MemberPosts: 3,755
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

Which is a bit weird in my book - I mean it isn't rocket science, the thing just reads data and presents it as an image. You'd have thought the basics were sorted years ago. Perhaps LR3 was / is just a PoS, which would be a bit unfortunate all round.

It kind of is rocket science in that much of what you see "recovered" from (clipped) highlights is only available in single channels and surrounding pixels and then interpolated back. RawTherapee offers four (4!) different algorithms just for this single function. And then you have to balance it all into those poor 8-bit gradations without making the transitions look out of place.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
tgutgu
Senior MemberPosts: 3,155Gear list
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Why shouldn't it be possible that new raw data interpretation algorithms are at play here?

LR 4 obviously does a lot on image interpretation basis, it also puts the correction of chromatic aberrations on a new level.

Also LR 3 had improved IQ considerably (noise pattern).

LR shows by example that it is really worth to shoot raw,mas your images can profit from R&D in the raw processing engines, which JPEGs can't do to the same extent, and in-camera JPEG engines won't get overhauled at all.

Louis_Dobson wrote:

Which is a bit weird in my book - I mean it isn't rocket science, the thing just reads data and presents it as an image. You'd have thought the basics were sorted years ago. Perhaps LR3 was / is just a PoS, which would be a bit unfortunate all round.

Crazy. I don't know what to think.

Steen Bay wrote:

Louis_Dobson wrote:

And if you have a GH2 and are using LR3, please try LR4. Big difference.

It's not just with the GH2. LR4 seems to be worth a try with all cameras.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1032&message=41483832

-- hide signature --

Thomas

 tgutgu's gear list:tgutgu's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH Panasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS +17 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Timur Born, May 16, 2012

Well, OK... but I don't count a degraded mess as "recovered". What I'm seeing is a stop at least of what was white coming back as picture with perfect tonality. Which The D3 always did, and the OM-D has always done, but seems new for the GH2, what was gone was pretty much gone in LR3 - what you got back was not worth having.

Anyway, I'll do some more testing, but it seems to me that LR4 has deffo found some real headroom at the top end that was simply not there under LR3.

If this is a general improvement with all cameras, it might be time to re-pp all my best shots going back to 2005!

Timur Born wrote:

Louis_Dobson wrote:

Which is a bit weird in my book - I mean it isn't rocket science, the thing just reads data and presents it as an image. You'd have thought the basics were sorted years ago. Perhaps LR3 was / is just a PoS, which would be a bit unfortunate all round.

It kind of is rocket science in that much of what you see "recovered" from (clipped) highlights is only available in single channels and surrounding pixels and then interpolated back. RawTherapee offers four (4!) different algorithms just for this single function. And then you have to balance it all into those poor 8-bit gradations without making the transitions look out of place.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
technic
Veteran MemberPosts: 7,496Gear list
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

If this is a general improvement with all cameras, it might be time to re-pp all my best shots going back to 2005!

yes, I'm reading the same experience from Canon DSLR users and have seen striking examples, huge improvement in highlight recovery. Unfortunately I have to upgrade to Win7 to use it, but LR4 is definitely an excellent investment even for old shots (more pay-off than buying a 'better' lens).

 technic's gear list:technic's gear list
Canon EOS 450D Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM Canon EF 300mm f/4.0L IS USM Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
dko22
Contributing MemberPosts: 524Gear list
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

it's been established for some time now that LR4 is much better than LR3, esp. in highlight recovery with the GH2. For any that are still in any doubt, I posted this 4 months ago.
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1041&message=40308200

Although it's now much harder to irrecoverably blow highlights on the GH2, i still find that this camera does tend to do its best if you're not careful to underexpose slightly when you're sure you want to keep the sky. There's danger then that clouds start to look a bit unnaturally contrasty. Fortunately, it's not usually to hard to get a pleasing result. I'm hoping though that the Olympus will give a more balanced exposure out of the box and less worry about nailing the exposure. Enough people have already posted that this appears to be the case.

I'm quite encouraged even with the Pen mini results which I've been testing while waiting for the E-M5--although shadows are a bit more noisy than the GH2 and I wouldn't even think of an ISO above 1600, the overall colour rendering with this camera is to me nicer than with the Pannys though it has to be said that some of this has to do with the RAW developer and the differences are to also some extent due to a much superior auto white balance with Oly's.

David

 dko22's gear list:dko22's gear list
Sigma DP2 Merrill Olympus PEN E-PM1 Fujifilm X-E1 Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R Samyang 8mm F2.8 UMC Fisheye +3 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Louis_Dobson
Forum ProPosts: 26,387
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to dko22, May 16, 2012

I think you'll be pleased. The GH2 does tend to ETTR, and I agree the colours often look a bit odd. I have the Pen Mini too, and while I love it, it is certainly a bit DR limited so if that isn't bothering you you'll love the OM-D which is, at the very least, the best of both worlds.

I had thought the OM-D was a massive DR improvement over the GH2 though, and now I don't. I suspect it is better, but not by the margin switching to LR4 at the same time made me think.

dko22 wrote:

it's been established for some time now that LR4 is much better than LR3, esp. in highlight recovery with the GH2. For any that are still in any doubt, I posted this 4 months ago.
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1041&message=40308200

Although it's now much harder to irrecoverably blow highlights on the GH2, i still find that this camera does tend to do its best if you're not careful to underexpose slightly when you're sure you want to keep the sky. There's danger then that clouds start to look a bit unnaturally contrasty. Fortunately, it's not usually to hard to get a pleasing result. I'm hoping though that the Olympus will give a more balanced exposure out of the box and less worry about nailing the exposure. Enough people have already posted that this appears to be the case.

I'm quite encouraged even with the Pen mini results which I've been testing while waiting for the E-M5--although shadows are a bit more noisy than the GH2 and I wouldn't even think of an ISO above 1600, the overall colour rendering with this camera is to me nicer than with the Pannys though it has to be said that some of this has to do with the RAW developer and the differences are to also some extent due to a much superior auto white balance with Oly's.

David

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
dko22
Contributing MemberPosts: 524Gear list
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

I think you'll be pleased. The GH2 does tend to ETTR, and I agree the colours often look a bit odd. I have the Pen Mini too, and while I love it, it is certainly a bit DR limited so if that isn't bothering you you'll love the OM-D which is, at the very least, the best of both worlds.

I had thought the OM-D was a massive DR improvement over the GH2 though, and now I don't. I suspect it is better, but not by the margin switching to LR4 at the same time made me think.

Louis, I agree that the DR of the mini, while not bad, is not quite good enough for significant DR manipulation. But as a second camera, it's much nicer than buying a P&S - I love the simple elegant design. When I first tried LR4, I really thought that the GH2 had such a boost that for a couple of months, I was sure I wouldn't be getting a new camera this year. Unfortunately, whatever the IQ improvement of the E-M5 may be (and I'm convinced that there is some at least though LR4 is such a biggie that it may well be more important than the camera upgrade itself), the combination of, unlike with the Pens, actually useful IBIS --which to me is of primary importance for low light static scene shooting -- and a camera which actually looks like a "real" camera converted me fairly quickly. I can see from your postings that you have also fallen under its spell! I only got about ten shots with it but even that was enough to convince me to put in my pre-order which for silver, might arrive by the autumn.

Enjoy your posts and will look forward to seeing what new observations you come up with.

David

 dko22's gear list:dko22's gear list
Sigma DP2 Merrill Olympus PEN E-PM1 Fujifilm X-E1 Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R Samyang 8mm F2.8 UMC Fisheye +3 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
mfj197
Contributing MemberPosts: 525
Like?
Re: GH2 v OM-D DR test
In reply to Louis_Dobson, May 16, 2012

Louis_Dobson wrote:

If this is a general improvement with all cameras, it might be time to re-pp all my best shots going back to 2005!

It is mighty impressive, and I think you'd enjoy going back to try your hand at one or two of your previous shots. Here's one with the G3 with all its DR limitations ( ), with a bit of quick work in LR4:

Michael

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads