X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?

Started Jun 13, 2013 | Discussions
digicosmos
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X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
Jun 13, 2013

It was focused at infinity at f/11  everything should be in focus.  Look at the trees on the left.  I wouldn't say that is sharp...  I mean, seriously, my compact does better than this.   Is it because I got a bad copy of the camera?  So far I hated every shot that came out from this camera...

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pavi1
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

Nothing wrong with your camera, it is not a tiny sensor p&s. There will be many differences and it is part of the process to learn how to use your new camera.

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digicosmos
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to pavi1, Jun 13, 2013

Thanks for your reply.  I wonder if you have checked the image at 100%.  What I see is that the trees on the left are terribly smudged with little detail remaining.  That's really soft, isn't it?  I had an x100 and the OOC jpgs are nothing short of breath taking, but I am not happy with this one though.  Did not have any problem with x-pro1 and x-e1 either.  NR was set to -2.  I have experience with many cameras but this one is driving me crazy.

Regards

Paul

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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

It's probably best for you to return the camera and purchase one that meets your expectations.

It's pointless to keep a camera when  you hate every picture you make.

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digicosmos
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to wchutt, Jun 13, 2013

I agree with what you say but I was simply trying to figure out the solution to a problem.  X100 and X100s have their quirks and photographers have to spend time getting used to them.  Anyway, thank you for all your help.  I think I've figured out what the problem is

Regards

Paul

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souk1501
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

I am interested in the X100s.  Would you mind sharing what was the cause?

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jwc54321
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

X100s OOC jpegs are not very good IMO. Just shoot raw for the x100s.

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howardfuhrman
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

Two suggestions:

1. Focus a subject at approximately 100' (something less than infinity) at f11 and that will help.

2. On a bright day shoot at a lower ISO than 800.

3. If that does not work, I recommend that you buy a Sony RX1 if you got the budget, I have read some photographer write that its IQ is superior to the X100S.

4. If you do not have the budget for the RX1, buy Sony RX100, Panasonic LX7, or a Fuji X20, you will find that they have greater depth of field.  I hope I said that right.  The smaller the sensor, more is in focus and at a lower ISO, you will that the photos are quite good.

Good luck with your decision.

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mike703
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In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

There is nothing wrong with your picture.

(i) It was taken at ISO 800 - quite unnecessarily for such a bright day. At ISO values like this you always start to see loss of detail (which appears as smearing of very fine details - like fabric patterns, hair, or the fine needles in the trees) and loss of dynamic range. Actually I think your pic looks pretty good; those are very fine needles on the trees and they are a long way away. Try shooting again at ISO100.

(ii) Check the jpeg settings in your camera. How an out-of-camera jpeg looks depends a lot on these. By default compact camera such as the ones you have been used to are set to produce over-saturated and over-sharpened images which look eye-popping and dramatic and have some 'wow' factor (even though they are actually quite unnatural). It is a very common complaint from people who have upgraded to their first DSLR (or equivalent, like yours, in terms of sensor) that the images look less pleasing: actually they are more accurate.

If you want to go for that look, just turn up the contrast / sharpening / saturation settings on your camera and see what difference it makes. Alternatively, as another poster said, to get the best out of it shoot RAW then you can adjust all these parameters to taste on your computer.

Best wishes

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mike703
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In reply to mike703, Jun 13, 2013

... check the noise-reduction setting.  For a shot taken at ISO800 the pale blue sky on your pic is suspiciously noise-free, which suggests that the camera is applying noise reduction at the jpeg conversion stage.  That will always soften and smear fine detail.  Turn it down and see what happens.

You can do a much better job of noise reduction using external software rather than relying on the limited abilities of the camera's processor and software and I'd strongly recommend this if you want to shoot at high ISOs regularly.

Best wishes

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baobob
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

The trees are blurred because it's windy!

The speed is then not enough since they are quite close

Look at the right of the picture ir's very sharp

Then look to the settings : IMHO too much and useless NR

Colors are also not so good so try other settings till you get satisfactory rendition for your tatste.

Avois f 11 that causes los of sharpnees due to difraction f8 is sufficient

Don't focus to infinity due to a slight fiel curvature of the lens rather focus at midrange then recompose to the best sharpness compromise

Last : trees and foliage are a difficult subject and a perfect results will be achieved using the RAW file and gentle shrpness management

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bartjeej
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

digicosmos wrote:

It was focused at infinity at f/11  everything should be in focus.  Look at the trees on the left.  I wouldn't say that is sharp...  I mean, seriously, my compact does better than this.   Is it because I got a bad copy of the camera?  So far I hated every shot that came out from this camera...

The image does appear a bit softer than ideal. I think the comment about focusing on infinity or focusing on 30 yards or so is a valuable one.

Regarding ISO 800, that might be due to Auto DR, or DR400 being engaged? It's a pretty contrasty scene... that would also explain the lack of noise in the sky, since (the way I understand it, at least) the "ISO 800" thing with DR400 only applies to the shadows; the highlights are effectively still at ISO 200, and the midtones somewhere inbetween depending on the tone curve applied by the jpeg engine.

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bartjeej
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to baobob, Jun 13, 2013

baobob wrote:

The trees are blurred because it's windy!

The speed is then not enough since they are quite close

shutter speed is 1/480th, what kinda hurricane do you think was passing by?!?

 
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Sulis2
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to bartjeej, Jun 13, 2013

The right hand of the image is very sharp - you can see the dark text behind the 30 sign clearly.

I agree with those who are suspecting that agressive NR might be the cause of the the apparent softness in the leaves. Lots of dense greenery may be just too hard for the NR to resolve. Check it out.

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Adrian Tung
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to bartjeej, Jun 13, 2013

bartjeej wrote:

digicosmos wrote:

It was focused at infinity at f/11 everything should be in focus. Look at the trees on the left. I wouldn't say that is sharp... I mean, seriously, my compact does better than this. Is it because I got a bad copy of the camera? So far I hated every shot that came out from this camera...

The image does appear a bit softer than ideal. I think the comment about focusing on infinity or focusing on 30 yards or so is a valuable one.

Regarding ISO 800, that might be due to Auto DR, or DR400 being engaged? It's a pretty contrasty scene... that would also explain the lack of noise in the sky, since (the way I understand it, at least) the "ISO 800" thing with DR400 only applies to the shadows; the highlights are effectively still at ISO 200, and the midtones somewhere inbetween depending on the tone curve applied by the jpeg engine.

No, that's not how DR400 works.

The shot is effectively ISO800 (i.e. ISO200 underexposed by 2 stops), but pushed with a tone curve that is more conservative on highlights.

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dengx
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In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

digicosmos wrote:

It was focused at infinity at f/11  everything should be in focus.  Look at the trees on the left.  I wouldn't say that is sharp...  I mean, seriously, my compact does better than this.   Is it because I got a bad copy of the camera?

To be honest the whole left side looks bad when compared to the right side.

The trees, the power lines, grass close to the street (and that's with NR-2 as you say).

Do a few more tests with fast shutter speeds (1/1000s or less), sweet aperture spot (around f/5.6 to f/8) ISO 200 or 400 (try to not to use ISO800 and DR400 yet) and compare the right side to the left side.

If it still happens - your copy is decentered I guess and needs to be serviced.

Regards

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baobob
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to bartjeej, Jun 13, 2013

There is always an explanation to things!!

On the right side the house is absolutely sharp

On the left side it's absolutely blurred

Then look to the pattern of the trees

Then think at close distance and to the relative speed

My experience in landscape photography at short distances and with a 65kmph wind you need 1/1000 sec to be sharp no need af any hurricane 

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Boxbrownie
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In reply to dengx, Jun 13, 2013

And if you want to double check.......take two piccies one with the camera inverted (upside down).

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Les Lammers
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

digicosmos wrote:

Thanks for your reply. I wonder if you have checked the image at 100%. What I see is that the trees on the left are terribly smudged with little detail remaining. That's really soft, isn't it? I had an x100 and the OOC jpgs are nothing short of breath taking, but I am not happy with this one though. Did not have any problem with x-pro1 and x-e1 either. NR was set to -2. I have experience with many cameras but this one is driving me crazy.

Regards

Paul

Sell the 100s and get another X100. The lens and sensor of the X-100 were a great match. The 100s is different not better...or worse.

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chp
chp
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Re: X100s really disappointing image. Is this normal?
In reply to digicosmos, Jun 13, 2013

Wrong subject and wrong settings to test a camera. Definitely not the subject from which I would expect anything spectacular.

some has been said by others already
Go in the shade, not in bright harsh light; iso 100, f5,6 (f8 at most, above that diffraction may start to kick in)

No full green subjects, all cameras struggle somewhat with green in particular, but WB is hard to set when there is such a dominant color

Walls in streets might be a better idea to begin with and experiment a bit as explained, and play with the parameters.

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