Weird color circle banding issue NX200

Started May 22, 2012 | Discussions
sensibill
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Weird color circle banding issue NX200
May 22, 2012

When I use the 20-50mm kit lens with my new NX200 in low light and bring up exposure in Lightroom, it reveals some rather disturbing color rings. The first pic here (trying to get a picture of a red crab in a terrarium) was taken with my MF 57mm 1.4 Konica Hexanon adapted lens, while the second is AF 20-50mm. All settings were otherwise the same (M mode, RAW+SF, NR off, ISO-200).

I noticed these rings/circles on some shots I took the other night in very low light, they occur at low and high ISO, doesn't seem to matter and become quite apparent as soon as I up exposure in LR4.

MF Konica 57mm Lens:

AF Samsung 20-50mm Lens:

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Ariston
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 22, 2012

looks like reflection of some sort.

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Ariston
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to Ariston, May 22, 2012

anyway, have you tried updating the camera and lens firmware? did you try cleaning the lens as well?

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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to Ariston, May 22, 2012

Camera and lens have latest firmware. Lens isn't in need of any servicing or cleaning that I can tell, but it's a year or so old, so anything is possible I guess.

Whatever this is, it happens in anywhere from pitch black (or near to it) at high ISO to moderately low(ish) light like this pic. Subject rock was illuminated by a fairly high wattage fluorescent fixture.

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mhike
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 22, 2012

I'd send it to Samsung to let their technical department check it out for you. It looks odd, indeed, so you might as well let a Samsung trained technician look it over and the other functions while they're at it.

sensibill wrote:

Camera and lens have latest firmware. Lens isn't in need of any servicing or cleaning that I can tell, but it's a year or so old, so anything is possible I guess.

Whatever this is, it happens in anywhere from pitch black (or near to it) at high ISO to moderately low(ish) light like this pic. Subject rock was illuminated by a fairly high wattage fluorescent fixture.

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Billx08
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 22, 2012

sensibill wrote:

When I use the 20-50mm kit lens with my new NX200 in low light and bring up exposure in Lightroom, it reveals some rather disturbing color rings. The first pic here (trying to get a picture of a red crab in a terrarium) was taken with my MF 57mm 1.4 Konica Hexanon adapted lens, while the second is AF 20-50mm. All settings were otherwise the same (M mode, RAW+SF, NR off, ISO-200).

I noticed these rings/circles on some shots I took the other night in very low light, they occur at low and high ISO, doesn't seem to matter and become quite apparent as soon as I up exposure in LR4.

Were both photos produced from the RAW files?

Whatever this is, it happens in anywhere from pitch black (or near to it) at high ISO to moderately low(ish) light like this pic. Subject rock was illuminated by a fairly high wattage fluorescent fixture.

I'd be suspicious of the light produced by the fluorescent light. Unless yours uses a high frequency ballast, shooting at 1/200 sec. shutter speeds will produce light that varies randomly in brightness and intensity. Photoshop might be disguising the differences, either automatically, or you could have done it by "upping the exposure". What's clear is that the color cast of the 20-50mm photo is horribly green and cruddy/noisy, as if it's severely underexposed, even though the histogram looks ok. This is the typical result when using high ISO levels and I'm surprised that the photo that used the 20-50mm lens looks so cruddy, since you only used ISO 200. What does it look like if you compare completely unedited JPEGs? Do any or all of them appear much darker? If you shoot many of photos using the same fluorescent light, preferably using Manual exposure mode and fixed ISO, is the color and brightness uniform or does it vary? If you try shooting with a comparable tungsten or halogen light, do the rings still appear or not? You should also try using a shutter speed of 1/30 or 1/60 (or slower) so that you get more uniform lighting from the fluorescent.

[Edit] Ignore the troll's misinformed suggestion. If anything is "broken", only a bad lens could possibly be consistent your results (and that's unlikely), but not the NX200.

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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to Billx08, May 22, 2012

Billx08 wrote:

Were both photos produced from the RAW files?

Yep, both were from original SRW.

I'd be suspicious of the light produced by the fluorescent light. Unless yours uses a high frequency ballast, shooting at 1/200 sec. shutter speeds will produce light that varies randomly in brightness and intensity.

Yes, but I can replicate the circle issue in non-fluorescent situations.

as if it's severely underexposed, even though the histogram looks ok.

It was pretty underexposed, but that shouldn't make this kind of thing happen, I wouldn't think?

What does it look like if you compare completely unedited JPEGs?

They're too dark, but when I bring up exposure it looks as though the JPEGs don't have this problem.

Do any or all of them appear much darker?

I think the JPEGs look about the same. But when I bring those select SRWs into Lightroom and bump the exposure, I immediately see the circles (on affected pics; it seems to hit maybe one in three or four).

If you try shooting with a comparable tungsten or halogen light, do the rings still appear or not?

I don't think it has anything to do with the light. I got the same effect shooting my lighted computer keyboard in a dark room, and an outdoor movie drive-in event with a street light way off in the distance.

Thanks for the input so far!

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Ariston
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 22, 2012

just check it, including the inner parts. because those look like something that is related with the lens. have you tried any other NX lens and display such phenomena? how about using the 18-55?

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jj74e
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to Ariston, May 22, 2012

Hm...I have a kind of similar issue with my nx10. in rare cases, i would get a random, thick stripe of yellow (like the white balance was grossly off but only in that strip of the photo) across my photo, and it would be captured in the photo regardless of the ISO/WB/etc.

perhaps a glitch....you said it only appeared when you used the 20-50mm and when you began to edit things? maybe it's just a rare lighting combination from the water/rocks/etc. that causes certain color shifts that are invisible except in post process where the shifts are exacerbated. as others have said, could be an unseen smudge on the 20-50 (though that's doubtful imo) or could be a sensor glitch of some sort.

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Billx08
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 22, 2012

sensibill wrote:
. . .

I'd be suspicious of the light produced by the fluorescent light. Unless yours uses a high frequency ballast, shooting at 1/200 sec. shutter speeds will produce light that varies randomly in brightness and intensity.

Yes, but I can replicate the circle issue in non-fluorescent situations.

Fluorescent lights are the worst, but they're not the only ones that produce light that varies in color and intensity with the A.C. frequency. Even tungsten filament lights do it, but to a lesser degree. That's why I suggested using a much slower shutter speed, so that the exposures would at least be uniform.

as if it's severely underexposed, even though the histogram looks ok.

It was pretty underexposed, but that shouldn't make this kind of thing happen, I wouldn't think?

It would make the photos gritty and cruddy, as the one shot with the 20-50mm lens was. It can also produce banding, but no, I don't recall anything that would produce arcs. That's more like lens flare, and since flare varies depending on where the lens is pointed with relation to any lights outside the frame, you could take a number of test shots with the NX200 on a tripod to prevent camera/lens movement. See if you still get the arcs in 1 out of 3 or 4 photos or if it changes to all photos or none (until you reposition the camera).

What does it look like if you compare completely unedited JPEGs?

They're too dark, but when I bring up exposure it looks as though the JPEGs don't have this problem.

Do any or all of them appear much darker?

I think the JPEGs look about the same. But when I bring those select SRWs into Lightroom and bump the exposure, I immediately see the circles (on affected pics; it seems to hit maybe one in three or four).

I still think that the lighting plays a part, but Lightroom's RAW processing could be buggy too. You might want to try one or two other RAW editors. If they all produce similar results, then maybe there's a problem with the way the NX200 produces underexposed RAW files. If they don't show the same problem, then it's not the camera and Adobe probably needs to fix its software.

If you try shooting with a comparable tungsten or halogen light, do the rings still appear or not?

I don't think it has anything to do with the light. I got the same effect shooting my lighted computer keyboard in a dark room, and an outdoor movie drive-in event with a street light way off in the distance.

Some street lights also produce light that varies with its A.C. power frequency. Check your keyboard by swinging it in a dark room. Do the lighted keys produce smooth arcs, or do they produce dotted arcs, as if they're rapidly turning on and off?

Thanks for the input so far!

Well, if you eventually get it sorted out it will help other NX200 owners, including me!

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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to jj74e, May 22, 2012

I'm not liking the idea of it being a sensor glitch... I get this frequently with underexposed dark shots. Here's one of several that turned out like this from the other night. Granted, it's a very underexposed shot, but sometimes you need to be able to do that. This is just a straight heightened exposure and then exported shot, no other editing.

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hootsmon
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

sensibill wrote:

Billx08 wrote:

Were both photos produced from the RAW files?

Yep, both were from original SRW.

I'd be suspicious of the light produced by the fluorescent light. Unless yours uses a high frequency ballast, shooting at 1/200 sec. shutter speeds will produce light that varies randomly in brightness and intensity.

Yes, but I can replicate the circle issue in non-fluorescent situations.

as if it's severely underexposed, even though the histogram looks ok.

It was pretty underexposed, but that shouldn't make this kind of thing happen, I wouldn't think?

What does it look like if you compare completely unedited JPEGs?

They're too dark, but when I bring up exposure it looks as though the JPEGs don't have this problem.

Do any or all of them appear much darker?

I think the JPEGs look about the same. But when I bring those select SRWs into Lightroom and bump the exposure, I immediately see the circles (on affected pics; it seems to hit maybe one in three or four).

If you try shooting with a comparable tungsten or halogen light, do the rings still appear or not?

I don't think it has anything to do with the light. I got the same effect shooting my lighted computer keyboard in a dark room, and an outdoor movie drive-in event with a street light way off in the distance.

Sorry, but I'm pretty certain that artificial lighting has everything to do with this effect. Briefly, all of the lighting sources mentioned above will exhibit a 50/60Hz flicker to some degree (depending on the AC mains frequency in your country). Such lighting sources as fluorescent tubes, CEFL globes, halogen streetlights, LED lights, and (especially) movie-projectors ALL produce flicker. And even though a 50Hz flicker may not be apparent to the human-eye, I expect it would manifest itself in a photograph taken at (say) 1/200 sec. Specifically, as circular banding around the light-source (or a reflection of it). Here's some (somewhat) related links:

  • Falconeye article

http://vimeo.com/10826227

  • LED flicker

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-grB1-xVv2w

  • CEFL lighting flicker

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oiCTntOo5y4

Thanks for the input so far!

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Isaac Crawford
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

Just out of curiosity, are you using a filter on the lens? Maybe there's she sort of weird reflection thing going on.
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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to hootsmon, May 23, 2012

I hear what you're saying, but the consistency with which this exhibits and the fact that I've never seen it with any other camera (including my NX100 and this same exact lens) taking pics of the same basic stuff (in some cases the very same outdoor film gathering, dark room keyboard and aquarium) makes me think either the lens has gone bad somehow or the NX200 is causing it, either a design flaw or a problem with mine in particular.

I'd rather it be something amiss with the lens as some others suggested. It does seem like it might be something to do with the elements not being in the right place, maybe an AF error that causes some sort of diffraction or other light separation that the sensor isn't calibrated for (or expecting, so to speak)...

But I've taken lots of CFL, LED and Tungsten shots at a variety of exposures and never seen this effect - ever. That's having owned a few compacts as well as E-PL1, G2, D100, D90, D5000, D3200, NX100, etc.

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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to Isaac Crawford, May 23, 2012

Good question, I think I was using a filter for the nighttime shot, but not for the aquarium one.

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hootsmon
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

Well pls take my theory with a large grain of salt, as I might be talking through my hat

To be honest I can't say I've ever seen a Moiré pattern exactly like this ether. But my (dim) recollection of physics at uni makes me suspicious that it might be some kind of beat-frequency interaction, caused by sampling 60Hz light flicker at 200Hz shutter-speed. But beyond that gut-feeling, I can't really explain the circular banding, sorry.

But... luckily there is a nice simple experiment that might shed some light (if you'll pardon the pun). I wonder if you can repeat the aquarium shot, with NX200 on a tripod. Now take a series of test-shots. at shutter-speeds ranging from (say) 1 sec, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250,... 1/500sec. Ideally, it would be nice to keep aperture constant, so I guess that means adjusting ISO (auto?) to suit. So what you'd expect if this IS a indeed a beat-frequency issue, then slower shutter-speeds will be less affected.

And as another experiment, you could try substituting another lens?

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sensibill
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to hootsmon, May 23, 2012

hootsmon wrote:

Well pls take my theory with a large grain of salt, as I might be talking through my hat

I have a more colorful version of that saying. Not probably DPR allowed, of course! LOL

To be honest I can't say I've ever seen a Moiré pattern exactly like this ether. But my (dim) recollection of physics at uni makes me suspicious that it might be some kind of beat-frequency interaction, caused by sampling 60Hz light flicker at 200Hz shutter-speed. But beyond that gut-feeling, I can't really explain the circular banding, sorry.

I have this feeling there's something up with the lens, but I could be wrong. I saw a nasty bright red hot pixel in one pic tonight, so maybe the sensor is getting ready to croak. That would be in keeping with my luck, such as buying the body only for $500 on the very day before the body+kit price fell to that level worldwide. Le sigh.

But... luckily there is a nice simple experiment that might shed some light (if you'll pardon the pun). I wonder if you can repeat the aquarium shot, with NX200 on a tripod. Now take a series of test-shots. at shutter-speeds ranging from (say) 1 sec, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250,... 1/500sec. Ideally, it would be nice to keep aperture constant, so I guess that means adjusting ISO (auto?) to suit. So what you'd expect if this IS a indeed a beat-frequency issue, then slower shutter-speeds will be less affected.

And as another experiment, you could try substituting another lens?

Yeah, so far my MF adapted lenses aren't exhibiting this. I'll try doing more pics as you describe. It'd be nice to isolate it to the body or lens.

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hootsmon
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

sensibill wrote:

hootsmon wrote:

Well pls take my theory with a large grain of salt, as I might be talking through my hat

I have a more colorful version of that saying. Not probably DPR allowed, of course! LOL

Yep, I know.

To be honest I can't say I've ever seen a Moiré pattern exactly like this ether. But my (dim) recollection of physics at uni makes me suspicious that it might be some kind of beat-frequency interaction, caused by sampling 60Hz light flicker at 200Hz shutter-speed. But beyond that gut-feeling, I can't really explain the circular banding, sorry.

I have this feeling there's something up with the lens, but I could be wrong. I saw a nasty bright red hot pixel in one pic tonight, so maybe the sensor is getting ready to croak. That would be in keeping with my luck, such as buying the body only for $500 on the very day before the body+kit price fell to that level worldwide. Le sigh.

You could be right there.

But... luckily there is a nice simple experiment that might shed some light (if you'll pardon the pun). I wonder if you can repeat the aquarium shot, with NX200 on a tripod. Now take a series of test-shots. at shutter-speeds ranging from (say) 1 sec, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250,... 1/500sec. Ideally, it would be nice to keep aperture constant, so I guess that means adjusting ISO (auto?) to suit. So what you'd expect if this IS a indeed a beat-frequency issue, then slower shutter-speeds will be less affected.

And as another experiment, you could try substituting another lens?

Yeah, so far my MF adapted lenses aren't exhibiting this. I'll try doing more pics as you describe. It'd be nice to isolate it to the body or lens.

Ah, that's interesting (and unexpected).

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mhike
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

I would definitely say that something is wrong here.

That's certainly not normal, even with that background lighting.

sensibill wrote:

I'm not liking the idea of it being a sensor glitch... I get this frequently with underexposed dark shots. Here's one of several that turned out like this from the other night. Granted, it's a very underexposed shot, but sometimes you need to be able to do that. This is just a straight heightened exposure and then exported shot, no other editing.

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wictred
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Re: Weird color circle banding issue NX200
In reply to sensibill, May 23, 2012

I've observed the same with the 30mm and 18-55 at low light (underexposed) if shot against a light source.

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