D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?

Started 9 months ago | Discussions
Rick Knepper
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You've missed the point somewhat.
In reply to TOF guy, 9 months ago

TOF guy wrote:

The images are not processed the same. The foliage in the D800 image is clearly brighter while it is more in the mid tones in the 5d3 image. Which mean that the D800 foliage ends up where the gamma curve is less steep - making details harder to discern - and where human visions requires larger differences to get the same impression of details (Weber's law ). Foliage is pretty much devoid of fine details - but it has with a lot of subtle differences in greens in particular because the leaves are not uniformly illuminated. The foliage looses its 3D aspects if these differences are washed out as it is the case here in the D800 image due to poor image processing.

So the 1st step is to normalize levels. The exposure may not be the same (differences in camera settings or true ISO values ?) and / or curves need to be applied

I've done this already in several other comparisons. It was time to look at the images from the viewpoint of how my OWN processing workflow melded with the imagery. The first set of images in the OP represented this. The 2nd set in this thread and in the original thread are totally neutralized.

There are some more subtle differences. A breeze is creating wavelets in part of the water surface in the 5D3 image, but other parts of the water surface are still and the trees reflections are sharp. The wavelets also contributes to make the scene less monotonous.

You know why I like this scene? It gives you everything from wind blown trees to stationary lines in the buildings. Of course, there is the rotating earth. Just kidding man.

By contrast there is not a clear indication of wind on the D800 image, no wavelets on the surface, but the water surface must be moving where the tree reflections are because these reflections are blurred. This gives the false impression that the D800 may not capture the details in the reflections because there is no obvious clue in that shot that the wind is blowing (we know it from the 5d3 image).

Even if everything were equal this is not a good scene to compare how details fare after downsizing. For this purpose you need a picture with lots of finer details.

I think it is for those of us who do landscapes. It is absolutely perfect.

But thank you for sharing the images and starting a good discussion.

Absolutely welcome. I already have ideas for two new comparisons.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

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jjnik
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Re: Do I envy what I own myself?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Dave Luttmann wrote:

It seems there have been a lot of threads lately trying to show the 5D3 has the same resolving power as the D800. Not sure why....

Resolution envy, maybe? I also don't get the time spent on these comparisons - some folks must have alot free time, but to each his own/whatever floats your boat!

Look - we get it: for the small size that most people view and print at, high MP is not a factor and a 6-8 MP camera would be fine. Both the 5D3 and D800 are fine cameras, but not comparable in many ways - each has it's strengths and weaknesses and folks should just accept that (imho). Though somehow I feel we'll get a different spin from certain people on the new-found value of higher resolution when a high MP Canon eventually arrives

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Sorry, that was directed at the statement about the endless threads on this simliar topic - not specifically at you, so no offense was intended.  I have to say that, in my experience, if you are only looking at 1800 x 1200 images on an NEC 2690 then you won't really see any benefit to 36 MP.  I have an NEC 2690 and an NEC PA271W as well and honestly don't see any real difference between my D700, D4 and D800E when viewing a full image on screen - crop in and the difference is enormous, though!

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Rick Knepper
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Re: Do I envy what I own myself?
In reply to jjnik, 9 months ago

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Dave Luttmann wrote:

It seems there have been a lot of threads lately trying to show the 5D3 has the same resolving power as the D800. Not sure why....

Resolution envy, maybe? I also don't get the time spent on these comparisons - some folks must have alot free time, but to each his own/whatever floats your boat!

Look - we get it: for the small size that most people view and print at, high MP is not a factor and a 6-8 MP camera would be fine. Both the 5D3 and D800 are fine cameras, but not comparable in many ways - each has it's strengths and weaknesses and folks should just accept that (imho). Though somehow I feel we'll get a different spin from certain people on the new-found value of higher resolution when a high MP Canon eventually arrives

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Sorry, that was directed at the statement about the endless threads on this simliar topic - not specifically at you, so no offense was intended. I have to say that, in my experience, if you are only looking at 1800 x 1200 images on an NEC 2690 then you won't really see any benefit to 36 MP.

No problem. There are more than a few people posting in this thread who ought to go back and read the entire text of both posts again (assuming they read it a first time) if they are going to take the stance that I need some middling schooling on digital imaging. They've missed a point or two if that is what they believe.

I have an NEC 2690 and an NEC PA271W as well and honestly don't see any real difference between my D700, D4 and D800E when viewing a full image on screen - crop in and the difference is enormous, though!

Listen, I own a 5D2, 5D3 D3x and D800E and used to own the 5D (and D700 for 2 weeks), all FF. I can honestly say I see the difference in all of them at 1800x1200, small, large, insignificant and major differences.

The phrase "see any real difference" is a whole different debate and hits the nail on the head really. Does the D800E capture any truly important additional detail? I say yes, otherwise I would not have purchased it. Others say no or they can't see it. Is that detail retained as the image is down-sampled? That depends on how much down-sampling one is going to do to a given image. That's what this comparison is all about. There's a cross-over point where one can see data loss before the image becomes too small to discern finer detail.

I'm looking at the images I posted at this size and I see that the image from the D800E lost a tad of resolution as a result of the reduction. So what? There shouldn't be any concern for anyone who already knew this would happen. If you don't see any difference, then what can I say? If you think the 5D3 has more detail, then all the power to you.

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jjnik
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Re: Do I envy what I own myself?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Dave Luttmann wrote:

It seems there have been a lot of threads lately trying to show the 5D3 has the same resolving power as the D800. Not sure why....

Resolution envy, maybe? I also don't get the time spent on these comparisons - some folks must have alot free time, but to each his own/whatever floats your boat!

Look - we get it: for the small size that most people view and print at, high MP is not a factor and a 6-8 MP camera would be fine. Both the 5D3 and D800 are fine cameras, but not comparable in many ways - each has it's strengths and weaknesses and folks should just accept that (imho). Though somehow I feel we'll get a different spin from certain people on the new-found value of higher resolution when a high MP Canon eventually arrives

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Sorry, that was directed at the statement about the endless threads on this simliar topic - not specifically at you, so no offense was intended. I have to say that, in my experience, if you are only looking at 1800 x 1200 images on an NEC 2690 then you won't really see any benefit to 36 MP.

No problem. There are more than a few people posting in this thread who ought to go back and read the entire text of both posts again (assuming they read it a first time) if they are going to take the stance that I need some middling schooling on digital imaging. They've missed a point or two if that is what they believe.

I have an NEC 2690 and an NEC PA271W as well and honestly don't see any real difference between my D700, D4 and D800E when viewing a full image on screen - crop in and the difference is enormous, though!

Listen, I own a 5D2, 5D3 D3x and D800E and used to own the 5D (and D700 for 2 weeks), all FF. I can honestly say I see the difference in all of them at 1800x1200, small, large, insignificant and major differences.

The phrase "see any real difference" is a whole different debate and hits the nail on the head really. Does the D800E capture any truly important additional detail?

I agree.  I also feel the D800E gives great tonality and colors.  To me, when you nail it with the D800, the images just have a special quality to them - hard to describe exactly.

I say yes, otherwise I would not have purchased it. Others say no or they can't see it. Is that detail retained as the image is down-sampled? That depends on how much down-sampling one is going to do to a given image. That's what this comparison is all about. There's a cross-over point where one can see data loss before the image becomes too small to discern finer detail.

Agreed - one issue  with 1800x 1200 on the NEC 2690 is that at my normal viewing distance, the pixel pitch and AG screen coating start to limit the ability to see the really fine details that would likely pop out on a higher res monitor, I think...

I'm looking at the images I posted at this size and I see that the image from the D800E lost a tad of resolution as a result of the reduction. So what? There shouldn't be any concern for anyone who already knew this would happen. If you don't see any difference, then what can I say? If you think the 5D3 has more detail, then all the power to you.

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Bills nature photo
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Way to put 5D III curve into D800E or PS for raw conversion?
In reply to TOF guy, 9 months ago

TOF guy wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

While that is true for the first set, it is not true of the 2nd set.

It is true for both images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

I agree that the curves are quite different and I must say that I like the curves applied to the 5D III image much better than the standard Nikon curves.  Is there an easy way to upload a Canon like curve into D800 or Photoshop for processing D800E raw files to have the contrast curve of the 5D III?

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Too much glass...too little time

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TOF guy
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

While that is true for the first set, it is not true of the 2nd set.

It is true for both images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

I don't know what you are saying. Please elaborate. By the way, there are sets of images with four images overall.

Sorry I should have written it is true for both sets of images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

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TOF guy
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Re: You've missed the point somewhat.
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick wrote:

It was time to look at the images from the viewpoint of how my OWN processing workflow melded with the imagery.

There may be situations where the brighter greens would have worked better. Do you want to come to conclusions because it happens that the foliage ended up brighter in the D800 image which may be purely accidental ?

The first set of images in the OP represented this. The 2nd set in this thread and in the original thread are totally neutralized.

"Neutralized" in this case means that you treating the processing software like a black box and assume that the processing is the same in both cases. But it is not.

You know why I like this scene? It gives you everything from wind blown trees to stationary lines in the buildings.

Except that the scene is more pleasant in one image than the other. The comparison becomes influenced by the "quality" of the scenes. Do you want to compare the results with your workflow or simply one scene more pleasant than the other ?

I think it is for those of us who do landscapes. It is absolutely perfect.

IMO Bizarre landscape. Neither interesting woods, nor landscape nor architectural nor urban. Jack of all trades master of none.

But thank you for sharing the images and starting a good discussion.

Absolutely welcome. I already have ideas for two new comparisons.

Looking forward to see them

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yray
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to TOF guy, 9 months ago

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

You may wanna check this thread: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3173868

I'm sure it is driven entirely by the D800 envy on the other side of the isle.

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Rick Knepper
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to TOF guy, 9 months ago

TOF guy wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

While that is true for the first set, it is not true of the 2nd set.

It is true for both images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

I don't know what you are saying. Please elaborate. By the way, there are sets of images with four images overall.

Sorry I should have written it is true for both sets of images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

You have failed to elaborate upon your assertion as requested. I'll have to advise readers to ignore what you are saying as complete rubbish until you do. if you are referring to "Curves" as those found in Photoshop, that is true for only one set of images I've posted in the entire two threads. Are you suggesting that the sensors themselves have a curve of their own?

Or, you could post your own side by side  comp showing what you think the images should look like with completely neutral conversions. The RAWs are readily available. Please see the OP.

I've looked through thousands of images from the 5D2 and the D3x long before obtaining the 5D3 and D800E. The base contrast differences are strikingly similar. In fact, "washed out" was an insult thrown out by a Canonnite when describing the look of a Nikon image when I posted a DR comparison of the 5D2 and D3x on the Canon forum sometime back. This is what completely neutralized Canon and Nikon files look like side by side.

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Rick Knepper
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Re: Way to put 5D III curve into D800E or PS for raw conversion?
In reply to Bills nature photo, 9 months ago

Bills nature photo wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

While that is true for the first set, it is not true of the 2nd set.

It is true for both images.

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

I agree that the curves are quite different and I must say that I like the curves applied to the 5D III image much better than the standard Nikon curves. Is there an easy way to upload a Canon like curve into D800 or Photoshop for processing D800E raw files to have the contrast curve of the 5D III?

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Too much glass...too little time

TOF guy failed to answer my question. Maybe you'll be so kind as to tell me what type of curve are you referring to i.e. a PPing Curve as found in Photoshop?

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Rick Knepper
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to yray, 9 months ago

yray wrote:

TOF guy wrote:

yray wrote:

. The D800 image in this example appears washed out even though I believe that at the pixel level it contains more fine detail.

That's because different curves were used for the images. It has nothing to do with "fine details" and "micro-contrast".

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Thierry - posted as regular forum member

You may wanna check this thread: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3173868

I'm sure it is driven entirely by the D800 envy on the other side of the isle.

I am not going to read this entire thread but the OP in said thread mirrors the opinion of died in the wool Canon shooters in general long before there was a twinkle in the eye of the D800 and 5D3 developers. In fact, "washed out" is how one Canon user described how Nikon files looked in a comparison of dynamic range (D3x vs 5D2) I posted in the Canon forum a while back when he was trying to discredit Nikon. To me, this so-called "washed out" characteristic is the same characteristic that allows one to work with shadows much easier than the Canon counterpart. It means to me that the shadows are rendered more realistically. In similar contrasty scenes, a Canon file can be rendered so dark as to require a lift drastic enough to harmfully alter color.

But, contrast and microcontrast are not what this thread is all about. Conclusions can be drawn regarding resolution independent of color and contrast particularly if they are studied without the lens of fanboi-colored glasses - of either brand. There are many areas in the scene where microcontrast doesn't mask resolution.

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Rick Knepper
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Re: Do I envy what I own myself?
In reply to jjnik, 9 months ago

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Dave Luttmann wrote:

It seems there have been a lot of threads lately trying to show the 5D3 has the same resolving power as the D800. Not sure why....

Resolution envy, maybe? I also don't get the time spent on these comparisons - some folks must have alot free time, but to each his own/whatever floats your boat!

Look - we get it: for the small size that most people view and print at, high MP is not a factor and a 6-8 MP camera would be fine. Both the 5D3 and D800 are fine cameras, but not comparable in many ways - each has it's strengths and weaknesses and folks should just accept that (imho). Though somehow I feel we'll get a different spin from certain people on the new-found value of higher resolution when a high MP Canon eventually arrives

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Sorry, that was directed at the statement about the endless threads on this simliar topic - not specifically at you, so no offense was intended. I have to say that, in my experience, if you are only looking at 1800 x 1200 images on an NEC 2690 then you won't really see any benefit to 36 MP.

No problem. There are more than a few people posting in this thread who ought to go back and read the entire text of both posts again (assuming they read it a first time) if they are going to take the stance that I need some middling schooling on digital imaging. They've missed a point or two if that is what they believe.

I have an NEC 2690 and an NEC PA271W as well and honestly don't see any real difference between my D700, D4 and D800E when viewing a full image on screen - crop in and the difference is enormous, though!

Listen, I own a 5D2, 5D3 D3x and D800E and used to own the 5D (and D700 for 2 weeks), all FF. I can honestly say I see the difference in all of them at 1800x1200, small, large, insignificant and major differences.

The phrase "see any real difference" is a whole different debate and hits the nail on the head really. Does the D800E capture any truly important additional detail?

I agree. I also feel the D800E gives great tonality and colors. To me, when you nail it with the D800, the images just have a special quality to them - hard to describe exactly.

Just to be clear, this comparison wasn't meant to be a 5D3 vs D800E comparison on every level of IQ. I may actually post a D3x vs D800E comparison to remove brand difference from the equation.

I enjoy very much how Nikon files react to my PPing workflow.

I say yes, otherwise I would not have purchased it. Others say no or they can't see it. Is that detail retained as the image is down-sampled? That depends on how much down-sampling one is going to do to a given image. That's what this comparison is all about. There's a cross-over point where one can see data loss before the image becomes too small to discern finer detail.

Agreed - one issue with 1800x 1200 on the NEC 2690 is that at my normal viewing distance, the pixel pitch and AG screen coating start to limit the ability to see the really fine details that would likely pop out on a higher res monitor, I think...

My normal viewing distance from the NEC is 18". I feel like I can still see a lot of detail even when casually viewing. What do you have your NEC 2690 sharpening set to? Just curious if I have mine set too low.

I intend to upgrade to the 30" PA series NEC monitor. Does your PA271W have a finer pixel pitch than the NEC 2690? What monitor were you referring to as the "higher res monitor"?

I'm looking at the images I posted at this size and I see that the image from the D800E lost a tad of resolution as a result of the reduction. So what? There shouldn't be any concern for anyone who already knew this would happen. If you don't see any difference, then what can I say? If you think the 5D3 has more detail, then all the power to you.

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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

You have failed to elaborate upon your assertion as requested. I'll have to advise readers to ignore what you are saying as complete rubbish until you do. if you are referring to "Curves" as those found in Photoshop, that is true for only one set of images I've posted in the entire two threads. Are you suggesting that the sensors themselves have a curve of their own?

Or, you could post your own side by side comp showing what you think the images should look like with completely neutral conversions. The RAWs are readily available. Please see the OP.

I've looked through thousands of images from the 5D2 and the D3x long before obtaining the 5D3 and D800E. The base contrast differences are strikingly similar. In fact, "washed out" was an insult thrown out by a Canonnite when describing the look of a Nikon image when I posted a DR comparison of the 5D2 and D3x on the Canon forum sometime back. This is what completely neutralized Canon and Nikon files look like side by side.

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

You'll have to advice us? You have some funny ideas about what a OPs responsibilities in a thread are. It's not really your job to worry about how readers interpret what is written in a thread.

What do you mean by completely neutralized? The same settings for both, or using a hardware calibrated profile for both? Because if it's the former, then it does in no way mean that the differences are minimized, it only means that you're showing the differences between standard conversion profiles in full. And using the standard conversion profile between cameras does not result in minimal differences in the result between cameras, far from it. And if you tried to minimize the differences between the two cameras by eye, you didn't do that good a job of it.

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Rick Knepper
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Re: You've missed the point somewhat.
In reply to TOF guy, 9 months ago

TOF guy wrote:

Rick wrote:

It was time to look at the images from the viewpoint of how my OWN processing workflow melded with the imagery.

There may be situations where the brighter greens would have worked better. Do you want to come to conclusions because it happens that the foliage ended up brighter in the D800 image which may be purely accidental ?

I can look at two images and ignore irrelevant data in order to extrapolate for a given characteristic. So yes, I can come to a conclusion. But let's drill down to the philosophical. There is NO such thing as two identical images even coming from the same camera/lens combo shot 1/10th of a second apart. Changing light, shutter speeds not exactly perfect calibrated, vibration from the first shot affecting the 2nd if shooting quick bursts. It all can be nit-picked.

The first set of images in the OP represented this. The 2nd set in this thread and in the original thread are totally neutralized.

"Neutralized" in this case means that you treating the processing software like a black box and assume that the processing is the same in both cases. But it is not.

I have asked you several times now to elaborate upon this assertion but to no avail. Wny? I am willing to learn.

You know why I like this scene? It gives you everything from wind blown trees to stationary lines in the buildings.

Except that the scene is more pleasant in one image than the other.

Well, this is an opinion not a fact. A lot of things can be coming between us such as the setup of our respective monitors.

The comparison becomes influenced by the "quality" of the scenes. Do you want to compare the results with your workflow

Yes, ultimately, this is one comparison among others that has to be conducted. But you have the RAWs at your disposal. Show me what your idea of a proper comparison should look like.

or simply one scene more pleasant than the other ?

Don't know what this means.

I think it is for those of us who do landscapes. It is absolutely perfect.

IMO Bizarre landscape. Neither interesting woods, nor landscape nor architectural nor urban. Jack of all trades master of none.

What can I say? It is the perfect set-up for testing IMO.

But thank you for sharing the images and starting a good discussion.

Absolutely welcome. I already have ideas for two new comparisons.

Looking forward to see them

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Rick Knepper
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Jon Rty, 9 months ago

Jon Rty wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

You have failed to elaborate upon your assertion as requested. I'll have to advise readers to ignore what you are saying as complete rubbish until you do. if you are referring to "Curves" as those found in Photoshop, that is true for only one set of images I've posted in the entire two threads. Are you suggesting that the sensors themselves have a curve of their own?

Or, you could post your own side by side comp showing what you think the images should look like with completely neutral conversions. The RAWs are readily available. Please see the OP.

I've looked through thousands of images from the 5D2 and the D3x long before obtaining the 5D3 and D800E. The base contrast differences are strikingly similar. In fact, "washed out" was an insult thrown out by a Canonnite when describing the look of a Nikon image when I posted a DR comparison of the 5D2 and D3x on the Canon forum sometime back. This is what completely neutralized Canon and Nikon files look like side by side.

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

You'll have to advice us? You have some funny ideas about what a OPs responsibilities in a thread are. It's not really your job to worry about how readers interpret what is written in a thread.

And yet, is it your job to advise me as to what my job is? I suggest that you debug your logic before posting.

What do you mean by completely neutralized? The same settings for both, or using a hardware calibrated profile for both?

Do you have these hardware calibrated profiles handy? if so, send them over and I will be glad to re-conduct the comparison.

Because if it's the former, then it does in no way mean that the differences are minimized, it only means that you're showing the differences between standard conversion profiles in full.

I used the "former", same settings including the same profile, Adobe Standard, which is available to everyone who uses ACR. However, I would like for TOF guy to confirm that he was refrring to camera profiles when he used the term "Curve".

Suffice it to say that the images have been neutralized to the best of my ability and consistent with other resolution comparisons posted here in the past and where you haven't brought into question the camera profile used.

For the first set of images in this thread, I used profiles developed for each individual model.

I have provided the RAWs. You are welcomed to show me how to neutralize the files for the purpose of comparing resolutions. Hint: a camera profile should not get in the way of comparing resolutions. I think most objective readers understand the difference between resolution and a tone curve.

And using the standard conversion profile between cameras does not result in minimal differences in the result between cameras, far from it. And if you tried to minimize the differences between the two cameras by eye, you didn't do that good a job of it.

I'll repeat the following:

"a camera profile should not get in the way of comparing resolutions. I think most objective readers understand the difference between resolution and a tone curve."

Not trying to be combative here so bear with me. I do not want the thread to get locked. Do you know the difference between a tone curve and resolution when you see it? I bet you do. So, I bet most everyone looking in can make the distinction too - eventually.

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Jon Rty
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

And yet, is it your job to advise me as to what my job is? I suggest that you debug your logic before posting.

Do you have these hardware calibrated profiles handy? if so, send them over and I will be glad to re-conduct the comparison.

I used the "former", same settings including the same profile, Adobe Standard, which is available to everyone who uses ACR. However, I would like for TOF guy to confirm that he was refrring to camera profiles when he used the term "Curve".

Suffice it to say that the images have been neutralized to the best of my ability and consistent with other resolution comparisons posted here in the past and where you haven't brought into question the camera profile used.

For the first set of images in this thread, I used profiles developed for each individual model.

I have provided the RAWs. You are welcomed to show me how to neutralize the files for the purpose of comparing resolutions. Hint: a camera profile should not get in the way of comparing resolutions. I think most objective readers understand the difference between resolution and a tone curve.

I'll repeat the following:

"a camera profile should not get in the way of comparing resolutions. I think most objective readers understand the difference between resolution and a tone curve."

Not trying to be combative here so bear with me. I do not want the thread to get locked. Do you know the difference between a tone curve and resolution when you see it? I bet you do. So, I bet most everyone looking in can make the distinction too - eventually.

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Nothing wrong with my logic. I'd suggest you don't use strawman arguments. I'm one of the readers who's behavior you presume to control. I'm certainly entitled to inform you that you presume too much.

I can't provide a hardware calibrated profile for *your* cameras, as I don't have access to them. You need to have a camera to be able to properly profile it, just like with a display. If you want to do that, invest in a ColorChecker or similar.

"Adobe Standard" is a different profile for each camera model. Hence the delay between release of a new camera and ACR support. You can think of it like Adobe 5DIII Standard and Adobe D800E Standard. They're two separate profiles producing differing results. Adobe doesn't provide profiles that match the output across camera models, you'll have to do that yourself.

Contrast affects resolution, as resolution is measured at a contrast level. Curves affect contrast. As a profile directly affects the tone curve and thus contrast, saying that a profile "shouldnt?" affect resolution just doesn't make any sense. That's basically saying that a profile shouldn't affect the tone-curve or contrast, which is impossible. All conversions need to apply a tone curve.

Here are the two RAWs you posted, quickly matched by eye-balling. Far from perfect, but as good as I'll get them with the time I'm willing to invest:

One

Two

All I did was adjust curves and white balance. And here's one of the above with contrast removed.

Flat

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reginalddwight
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In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick,

Unfortunately, I have not had a chance to read every post in these threads.

What was your primary objective of these tests? What have you concluded?

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elliotn
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Jon Rty, 9 months ago

When I run the Nikon and Canon raw files through ACR, using Adobe Standard profile, White Balance 'As Shot', and all other settings at defaults, the resulting files when opened in Photoshop are remarkably similar in colour, tone and contrast. I see no evidence of the Nikon file being 'washed out' or lower contrast when compared to the Canon file.

The only significant difference between the files is that the Nikon, as expected, renders more detail than the Canon. This extra detail will be entirely lost when both files are downsized to two megapixels (1200 x 1800px).

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jjnik
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Re: Do I envy what I own myself?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Rick Knepper wrote:

jjnik wrote:

Dave Luttmann wrote:

It seems there have been a lot of threads lately trying to show the 5D3 has the same resolving power as the D800. Not sure why....

Resolution envy, maybe? I also don't get the time spent on these comparisons - some folks must have alot free time, but to each his own/whatever floats your boat!

Look - we get it: for the small size that most people view and print at, high MP is not a factor and a 6-8 MP camera would be fine. Both the 5D3 and D800 are fine cameras, but not comparable in many ways - each has it's strengths and weaknesses and folks should just accept that (imho). Though somehow I feel we'll get a different spin from certain people on the new-found value of higher resolution when a high MP Canon eventually arrives

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Rick Knepper, photographer, non-professional, shooting for pleasure, check my profile for gear list and philosophy. TJ said, "Every generation needs a new revolution".

Sorry, that was directed at the statement about the endless threads on this simliar topic - not specifically at you, so no offense was intended. I have to say that, in my experience, if you are only looking at 1800 x 1200 images on an NEC 2690 then you won't really see any benefit to 36 MP.

No problem. There are more than a few people posting in this thread who ought to go back and read the entire text of both posts again (assuming they read it a first time) if they are going to take the stance that I need some middling schooling on digital imaging. They've missed a point or two if that is what they believe.

I have an NEC 2690 and an NEC PA271W as well and honestly don't see any real difference between my D700, D4 and D800E when viewing a full image on screen - crop in and the difference is enormous, though!

Listen, I own a 5D2, 5D3 D3x and D800E and used to own the 5D (and D700 for 2 weeks), all FF. I can honestly say I see the difference in all of them at 1800x1200, small, large, insignificant and major differences.

The phrase "see any real difference" is a whole different debate and hits the nail on the head really. Does the D800E capture any truly important additional detail?

I agree. I also feel the D800E gives great tonality and colors. To me, when you nail it with the D800, the images just have a special quality to them - hard to describe exactly.

Just to be clear, this comparison wasn't meant to be a 5D3 vs D800E comparison on every level of IQ.

Understood.  Thanks.

I may actually post a D3x vs D800E comparison to remove brand difference from the equation.

I enjoy very much how Nikon files react to my PPing workflow.

me too - and i recognize both brands are capable of incredible IQ in the right hands!

I say yes, otherwise I would not have purchased it. Others say no or they can't see it. Is that detail retained as the image is down-sampled? That depends on how much down-sampling one is going to do to a given image. That's what this comparison is all about. There's a cross-over point where one can see data loss before the image becomes too small to discern finer detail.

Agreed - one issue with 1800x 1200 on the NEC 2690 is that at my normal viewing distance, the pixel pitch and AG screen coating start to limit the ability to see the really fine details that would likely pop out on a higher res monitor, I think...

My normal viewing distance from the NEC is 18". I feel like I can still see a lot of detail even when casually viewing. What do you have your NEC 2690 sharpening set to? Just curious if I have mine set too low.

I'll have to check.

I intend to upgrade to the 30" PA series NEC monitor. Does your PA271W have a finer pixel pitch than the NEC 2690?

Yes - 0.23 for the PA271W versus 0.29 for the 2690.

What monitor were you referring to as the "higher res monitor"?

4K.  Sort of drawing an analogy to how images on my retina ipad look way better/more detailed than the older lower rez ipad2.  I'd expect a similar boost with a higher rez 27" screen?

I'm looking at the images I posted at this size and I see that the image from the D800E lost a tad of resolution as a result of the reduction. So what? There shouldn't be any concern for anyone who already knew this would happen. If you don't see any difference, then what can I say? If you think the 5D3 has more detail, then all the power to you.

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LMCasey
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Re: D800E vs. 5D3: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?
In reply to Rick Knepper, 9 months ago

Rick,

After playing with your raws, I really can't see any significant difference at all. I think it's all in how you got from your raws to your 1800x1200 jpegs.

And yes, I've got to believe you are way into the "diminishing returns" at this amount of downsizing. If you end up with "less" when starting out with "more" then it's on you.

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