CIZ on A7/r ... ?

Started 4 months ago | Discussions
blue_skies
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CIZ on A7/r ... ?
4 months ago

Just for fun, on the A7, I assigned button C3 to Zoom and enabled CIZ for zoom, but not digital zoom.

When I click the C3 button now, I can zoom in on any (prime or zoom) lens with reasonable (JPG) results. It literally turns a prime lens into a 2x zoom lens...

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability).

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Henry

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sean lancaster
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

it beats cropping for sure.

For sure? It's just digitally cropping a non zoomed image, isn't it?

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blue_skies
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to sean lancaster, 4 months ago

sean lancaster wrote:

blue_skies wrote:

it beats cropping for sure.

For sure? It's just digitally cropping a non zoomed image, isn't it?

No, it is not. Check some archived discussions. This is one funny use of CIZ:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/52441302

CIZ is using template based guessing software to avoid the problem of generic upsampling algorithms, and performs more like medium to high end post-processing upsampling tools.

Bart Hickman here reports that RAW processing (crop in RAW) gives him the same results, but I don't remember which flow he uses:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/51777303

I know some of you used the CIZ function with the E1650P lens. It is kind of cumbersome to enable it with a non-PZ lens on the current Nex cameras.

On the A7/r, you can assign this Zoom function to a custom button, AND the camera will retain the zoom mode, so you don't have to do this prior to each shot (as you would have to do on the Nex).

For moments when you have the wrong lens mounted, or want a little bit more reach, it is a nice feature to have. Sure, you can do this in post, but if it is so easy to access, why not use it for framing, focusing, lighting, and final composition?

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rishi o'
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

I'm having a hard time understanding what this is. A picture zoomed in but using full frame of the sensor doesn't make sense. That said, Any chance if you can check to see if you can zoom in on video mode somehow while still maintaining 1080p?

blue_skies wrote:

Just for fun, on the A7, I assigned button C3 to Zoom and enabled CIZ for zoom, but not digital zoom.

When I click the C3 button now, I can zoom in on any (prime or zoom) lens with reasonable (JPG) results. It literally turns a prime lens into a 2x zoom lens...

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability).

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Cheers,
Henry

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sroute
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to rishi o', 4 months ago

From Sony's own forum site:

Optical zoom: true zoom, by using optical zoom quality remains the same and the full resolution of the camera can be used on the zoomed image.

Clear Image Digital Zoom: the processor compares patterns found in adjacent pixels and creates new pixels to match selected patterns, resulting in more realistic, higher quality images

Precision Digital zoom: Enlarges all the image sizes by the total zoom scale of approximately 64x, including the optical 16x. However, note that the image quality deteriorates when the optical zoom scale is exceeded.

http://community.sony.com/t5/Cybershot-Cameras/Clear-Image-Zoom-vs-Precision-Digital-Zoom-what-s-the-difference/td-p/145265

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Hin Man
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

I tried out 1.2x in CIZ that essentially gives my Sigma 30mm f/2.8 ability to remove the noticeable vignette from f/2.8 to f/8.0. I think this will come in handy for people trying out Sigma 30/60 in FF with auto crop mode turned off.

There is one caveat that I don't quite understand with Clear Image Zoom (CIZ) feature, once enabled, the flexible spot AF come back with a big rectangle as if the auto focus can't work on a particular spot but an estimate similar to the green rectangular box in NEX focusing with issue. Do any of you try Clear Image Zoom and run into this focusing handicap. Is this normal, I ran into rectangle box in AF in both my FE 35mm and my Sigma 30mm. I turn to DMF and use MF override to ensure accurate focusing.

with sigma 30mm f/2.8 with baffle removed, shot in f/8, Zoom at 1

same setting with Sigma 30mm f/2.8 in f/8.0, zoom at 1.2x

Of course, there is still slight vignette on the corners. If I shoot in f/2.8 to f/5.6, the 1.2x Clear Image Zoom seem to offset the vignette making the Sigma 30mm f/2.8 work like a Sigma 36mm f/2.8. And remember the Sigma is a $150 lens that I bought and some people probably get it even cheaper.

I like to know what are the caveats, is there loss of quality in CIZ. How is it different than the cropping in post processing? I don't know the detail behind.

Here is a reference shot in f/8.0 shot from Sony FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA for reference

with Sony FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA in f/8.0

And why is the flexible spot AF return a rectangle? Will CIZ degrade the AF system? I use DMF to counter the rectangle.

Thanks,

Hin

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forpetessake
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to rishi o', 4 months ago

rishi o' wrote:

I'm having a hard time understanding what this is. A picture zoomed in but using full frame of the sensor doesn't make sense. That said, Any chance if you can check to see if you can zoom in on video mode somehow while still maintaining 1080p?

This is really a primitive and useless feature. It crops the image, just like any digital zoom would do, then it resizes image up with a simple interpolation to the original 16MP. The actual resolution quickly goes down the drain, of course. If the NEX kit lenses can pull some 6MP actual resolution, after this 2x CIZ/digital zoom the resolution drops to about 1.5MP, hardly suitable for any media. Resizing them up to 16MP just makes the mess bigger. Many people resize their images down to the display/TV resolution, and resizing up and then down only adds artifacts, so it's worse than a simple crop in PP.

And one more thing. Just like any other cropping (or TC) the effective aperture also changes proportionally. So, the kit at 50mm f/5.6 with 2x CIZ becomes low resolution slow 100mm f/11.2 lens.

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tn1krr
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

sean lancaster wrote:

blue_skies wrote:

it beats cropping for sure.

For sure? It's just digitally cropping a non zoomed image, isn't it?

No, it is not. Check some archived discussions. This is one funny use of CIZ:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/52441302

It is still crop + upsampling to original resolution. The camera cannot make information it does not have and the prime will only project cropped area into X amount of pixels in sensor. Obviously it can appear it makes some magic since it uses lens sweet spot, but crop is a crop even if it is upsampled afterwards.

CIZ is using template based guessing software to avoid the problem of generic upsampling algorithms, and performs more like medium to high end post-processing upsampling tools.

So it is like cropping in Lightroom instead of cropping in paint.

Bart Hickman here reports that RAW processing (crop in RAW) gives him the same results, but I don't remember which flow he uses:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/51777303

Obviously. I'd bet sisable sum that LR crop + processing + upsampling on output does pretty much the same thing. Depending on the picture in case of any motion blur or similar a sensibly applied deconvolution sharpening would make PP option way better than CIS.

Those who think that some magic can be done on upsampling have watched too much CSI or 24 surveillance footage magnification.

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AndreasBraun
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to forpetessake, 4 months ago

forpetessake wrote:

rishi o' wrote:

I'm having a hard time understanding what this is. A picture zoomed in but using full frame of the sensor doesn't make sense. That said, Any chance if you can check to see if you can zoom in on video mode somehow while still maintaining 1080p?

This is really a primitive and useless feature. It crops the image, just like any digital zoom would do, then it resizes image up with a simple interpolation to the original 16MP. The actual resolution quickly goes down the drain, of course. If the NEX kit lenses can pull some 6MP actual resolution, after this 2x CIZ/digital zoom the resolution drops to about 1.5MP, hardly suitable for any media. Resizing them up to 16MP just makes the mess bigger. Many people resize their images down to the display/TV resolution, and resizing up and then down only adds artifacts, so it's worse than a simple crop in PP.

And one more thing. Just like any other cropping (or TC) the effective aperture also changes proportionally. So, the kit at 50mm f/5.6 with 2x CIZ becomes low resolution slow 100mm f/11.2 lens.

Calling it a "really a primitive and useless feature" indicates that you don't have experience with this feature.

I'm using it permanently with the 16-50 PZ with good success. There are of course differences when pixel peeping (100% crop). But ONLY then. You will have a hard time seeing differences at say 70% crops. OTOH, the extended focal range is very handy, and if you're not going to submit the pic for a competition award the quality is more than adequate for almost any demands.

"So, the kit at 50mm f/5.6 with 2x CIZ becomes low resolution slow 100mm f/11.2 lens"

This is not the case. The light cone hitting each pixel will remain the optical f/5.6. The additional pixels created by the CIZ are not robbing light from the actually illuminated pixels.

Andreas

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nzmacro
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

Just for fun, on the A7, I assigned button C3 to Zoom and enabled CIZ for zoom, but not digital zoom.

When I click the C3 button now, I can zoom in on any (prime or zoom) lens with reasonable (JPG) results. It literally turns a prime lens into a 2x zoom lens...

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

I like this mate .........

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability).

Awwww, never even thought about that !! Very clever

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Henry

All the best Henry, Mr Tricky Dickie IMO. nice.

Danny.

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tn1krr
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability)

Lets not spread false info, you do NOT keep using entire FF sensor. You obviously keep using other sensor characteristics, but you do crop. And then upscale, supposedly with above average algorithm.

From Sony

http://www.sony-asia.com/microsite/assets/cyber-shot/2011h2/clear-image-zoom/

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martindesu
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

I'm struggling to understand how the entire sensor is used, when the desired image size fills only half of it...

Being as the lens is a prime, and the image circle is fixed... how does this work?

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blue_skies
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to martindesu, 4 months ago

martindesu wrote:

I'm struggling to understand how the entire sensor is used, when the desired image size fills only half of it...

Being as the lens is a prime, and the image circle is fixed... how does this work?

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Very simple, capture/exposure, cropping and upsampling are sequentially applied.

I tested this very simply using a CV35/1.4 at 35mm and 70mm (2x CIZ) versus a CV75/2.5.

The exposure values for the 35mm and 70mm shots are identical (f/1.4) whereas the CV75 lens measures exposure for f/2.5 and ups the ISO accordingly.

If the exposure was affected by the 2x CIZ, the effective aperture would have been f/2.0 and this would have shown in the measurements - it did not.

This implies that the camera captures the image on the full sensor - using the full-sensor f-stop and exposure parameters, as if no CIZ is being applied, and then, like you would do in post, you crop the image down to the zoom level that you have selected (up to 2x), followed by upsampling to fill in the missing pixels.

(If you had a pp-flow, you would do it the same way).

Per Sony's own decreit - the upsampling is 'intelligent' and uses pattern recognition to add missing pixels, rather than a generic upsampling algorithm.

I had only used it with the E1650P lens in the past, but the results were rather satisfactory. I don't expect it to always work, and I also don't expect it to be as good as optical zoom. It doesn't have to look good at 100% crop if the image is only used for digital or small size print applications.

This also means that you can shoot the effective 2x longer FL on a shorter FL lens under low light - you will get lower ISO and/or faster shutter speed than the longer (slower) lens will give you.

CIZ is not the same as digital zoom - this is nothing but a simple crop which can be done in post at any time, and is image degrading. CIZ may (or may not) work better than expected...

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Cheers,
Henry

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blue_skies
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to tn1krr, 4 months ago

tn1krr wrote:

blue_skies wrote:

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability)

Lets not spread false info, you do NOT keep using entire FF sensor. You obviously keep using other sensor characteristics, but you do crop. And then upscale, supposedly with above average algorithm.

From Sony

http://www.sony-asia.com/microsite/assets/cyber-shot/2011h2/clear-image-zoom/

See my answer to Martin below - it does use the entire FF sensor for exposure. Crop and upscale are applied post capture. If it did not, it would work like an optical zoom, and you would loose light.

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Henry

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LTZ470
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

Thanks Henry, didn't even realize it was possible on A7r…got it setup now…need it at times for work...

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Digital Nigel
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

martindesu wrote:

I'm struggling to understand how the entire sensor is used, when the desired image size fills only half of it...

Being as the lens is a prime, and the image circle is fixed... how does this work?

-- hide signature --

Very simple, capture/exposure, cropping and upsampling are sequentially applied.

I tested this very simply using a CV35/1.4 at 35mm and 70mm (2x CIZ) versus a CV75/2.5.

The exposure values for the 35mm and 70mm shots are identical (f/1.4) whereas the CV75 lens measures exposure for f/2.5 and ups the ISO accordingly.

If the exposure was affected by the 2x CIZ, the effective aperture would have been f/2.0 and this would have shown in the measurements - it did not.

This implies that the camera captures the image on the full sensor - using the full-sensor f-stop and exposure parameters, as if no CIZ is being applied, and then, like you would do in post, you crop the image down to the zoom level that you have selected (up to 2x), followed by upsampling to fill in the missing pixels.

(If you had a pp-flow, you would do it the same way).

Per Sony's own decreit - the upsampling is 'intelligent' and uses pattern recognition to add missing pixels, rather than a generic upsampling algorithm.

I had only used it with the E1650P lens in the past, but the results were rather satisfactory. I don't expect it to always work, and I also don't expect it to be as good as optical zoom. It doesn't have to look good at 100% crop if the image is only used for digital or small size print applications.

This also means that you can shoot the effective 2x longer FL on a shorter FL lens under low light - you will get lower ISO and/or faster shutter speed than the longer (slower) lens will give you.

CIZ is not the same as digital zoom - this is nothing but a simple crop which can be done in post at any time, and is image degrading. CIZ may (or may not) work better than expected...

I'm struggling to see how this is different to digital zoom. They both involve in-camera cropping and upsampling the original RAW image to produce a reduced-quality JPEG. How is this any better than capturing a RAW image, then selectively cropping and resampling as needed in post-processing? In other words, it may have advantages for a JPEG shooter, but why would RAW shooter switch to JPEG mode to use CIZ?

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tn1krr
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

martindesu wrote:

I'm struggling to understand how the entire sensor is used, when the desired image size fills only half of it...

Being as the lens is a prime, and the image circle is fixed... how does this work?

-- hide signature --

Very simple, capture/exposure, cropping and upsampling are sequentially applied.

I tested this very simply using a CV35/1.4 at 35mm and 70mm (2x CIZ) versus a CV75/2.5.

The exposure values for the 35mm and 70mm shots are identical (f/1.4) whereas the CV75 lens measures exposure for f/2.5 and ups the ISO accordingly.

If the exposure was affected by the 2x CIZ, the effective aperture would have been f/2.0 and this would have shown in the measurements - it did not.

This implies that the camera captures the image on the full sensor - using the full-sensor f-stop and exposure parameters, as if no CIZ is being applied, and then, like you would do in post, you crop the image down to the zoom level that you have selected (up to 2x), followed by upsampling to fill in the missing pixels.

(If you had a pp-flow, you would do it the same way).

Per Sony's own decreit - the upsampling is 'intelligent' and uses pattern recognition to add missing pixels, rather than a generic upsampling algorithm.

I had only used it with the E1650P lens in the past, but the results were rather satisfactory. I don't expect it to always work, and I also don't expect it to be as good as optical zoom. It doesn't have to look good at 100% crop if the image is only used for digital or small size print applications.

This also means that you can shoot the effective 2x longer FL on a shorter FL lens under low light - you will get lower ISO and/or faster shutter speed than the longer (slower) lens will give you.

CIZ is not the same as digital zoom - this is nothing but a simple crop which can be done in post at any time, and is image degrading. CIZ may (or may not) work better than expected...

Obviously full Sensor area is used for exposure/capture before crop, but is does not use full sensor to create the end result. But until upscaling this is no different from any cropping. There is 3 stages, Clear Image Zoom shares 1 and 2 with normal digital zoom.

1. exposure with select parameters. Using full sensor, obviously.

2. crop to throw extra pixels away. Digital zoom stops here. Outputs jpg.

3. Clear Image Zoom takes the crop and upsamples it to original (or whatever) resolution with supposed intelligence. There is a gazillion different upscaling algorithms, but they all work within limitations of how many pixels there are given to start with.

I'm a HC home theater hobbyist and we've seen about million + 1 different upscaling algorithms promising to make HD quality from SD. Some are better than others, but all way worse than real thing.

RAW shooter with PP skills will do better than using CIZ with proper tools as one can adapt masked NR, localized sharpening etc. perfectly to each picture.

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GaryW
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to tn1krr, 4 months ago

tn1krr wrote:

blue_skies wrote:

martindesu wrote:

I'm struggling to understand how the entire sensor is used, when the desired image size fills only half of it...

Yeah, it's a crop.  I don't know where the confusion came from.

Being as the lens is a prime, and the image circle is fixed... how does this work?

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Very simple, capture/exposure, cropping and upsampling are sequentially applied.

I tested this very simply using a CV35/1.4 at 35mm and 70mm (2x CIZ) versus a CV75/2.5.

The exposure values for the 35mm and 70mm shots are identical (f/1.4) whereas the CV75 lens measures exposure for f/2.5 and ups the ISO accordingly.

If you're implying that sampling a portion of the sensor would affect aperture, you're wrong.  Otherwise, I'm not sure what the concern is.

If the exposure was affected by the 2x CIZ, the effective aperture would have been f/2.0 and this would have shown in the measurements - it did not.

This implies that the camera captures the image on the full sensor - using the full-sensor f-stop and exposure parameters, as if no CIZ is being applied, and then, like you would do in post, you crop the image down to the zoom level that you have selected (up to 2x), followed by upsampling to fill in the missing pixels.

Right, it's cropped.  That's simply the obvious way to do it.  But if they had some freaky sensor and only captured a few pixels, the rules of exposure would still apply.

(If you had a pp-flow, you would do it the same way).

Per Sony's own decreit - the upsampling is 'intelligent' and uses pattern recognition to add missing pixels, rather than a generic upsampling algorithm.

I had only used it with the E1650P lens in the past, but the results were rather satisfactory. I don't expect it to always work, and I also don't expect it to be as good as optical zoom. It doesn't have to look good at 100% crop if the image is only used for digital or small size print applications.

This also means that you can shoot the effective 2x longer FL on a shorter FL lens under low light - you will get lower ISO and/or faster shutter speed than the longer (slower) lens will give you.

CIZ is not the same as digital zoom - this is nothing but a simple crop which can be done in post at any time, and is image degrading. CIZ may (or may not) work better than expected...

Obviously full Sensor area is used for exposure/capture before crop, but is does not use full sensor to create the end result. But until upscaling this is no different from any cropping. There is 3 stages, Clear Image Zoom shares 1 and 2 with normal digital zoom.

1. exposure with select parameters. Using full sensor, obviously.

2. crop to throw extra pixels away. Digital zoom stops here. Outputs jpg.

Unfortunately, it doesn't. It then resizes (interpolates) the remaining pixels to fill the original size. If you look at the photo on a pixel level, it'll be "soft". Why do they do this? Why not just output a smaller file? The only advantage might be that it reduces the effect of JPEG artifacts but you can still get better results from RAW.

3. Clear Image Zoom takes the crop and upsamples it to original (or whatever) resolution with supposed intelligence. There is a gazillion different upscaling algorithms, but they all work within limitations of how many pixels there are given to start with.

CIZ seems to work better than typical digital zoom, and since none of my post-processing software does something like this, it might even be useful on occasion. It's kind of nice to turn the 16-50 into a 16-100... although, really, quality does suffer magnifying 2x.

I'm a HC home theater hobbyist and we've seen about million + 1 different upscaling algorithms promising to make HD quality from SD. Some are better than others, but all way worse than real thing.

They have the advantage of being able to use multiple frames. So, it's possible to do a very good upscaling job, in theory. But yeah, most are pretty lame. Weird, the best I've found is the PS3. Not that I've tried a lot of players, but still....

RAW shooter with PP skills will do better than using CIZ with proper tools as one can adapt masked NR, localized sharpening etc. perfectly to each picture.

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KwhyChang
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Re: CIZ on A7/r ... ?
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

blue_skies wrote:

Just for fun, on the A7, I assigned button C3 to Zoom and enabled CIZ for zoom, but not digital zoom.

When I click the C3 button now, I can zoom in on any (prime or zoom) lens with reasonable (JPG) results. It literally turns a prime lens into a 2x zoom lens...

In the past, I used CIZ on the E1650P lens with positive results, it beats cropping for sure.

It also is a neat way to avoid edge/corner smearing and vignetting on RF lenses...

Note - this is different from APS-C crop mode - you keep using the entire FF sensor (and its higher ISO ability).

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Cheers,
Henry

Thanks Henry,

Without getting into the interesting discussion, CIZ was something I wondered about and now I know a little more and will experiment on my A7.

Will you leave the button programmed that way?

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Dave

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Hin Man
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Re: CIZ on A7/r -- any see focusing with green rectangle
In reply to blue_skies, 4 months ago

Once enabled with CIZ, I see green rectangle upon half-press, do any see this issue.  I see green rectangle in all zoom settings.   Does the green rectangle signal any problem in the focusing?  Why is focusing a problem after zooming?

Thanks,

Hin

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