whats up with my FZ200 images

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
cmc1
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whats up with my FZ200 images
11 months ago

the attached photo was shot from a steady platform and the self timer was activated. why do all my photos look extremely noisy, low res and with that horrible water effect? my smartphone roduces sharpers images as does my FZ 150 thanks in advance

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Donald M Mackinnon
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

I will leave a more technically detailed reply to the experts but two things that fly off the exif is f8 and ISO 400. An aperture of f8 is going to run into diffraction issues on the FZ200 and I would suggest not going beyond f5.6.

I can see no reason why ISO 100 could not have been used at a much larger aperture and believe the results would have been very different.

I was going to upgrade from an FZ150 I was suing at the time of the FZ200 launch but there were multiple threads on forums from disappointed upgraders who were deeply disappointed at having spent money to get less IQ and more noise.

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cmc1
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to Donald M Mackinnon, 11 months ago

Yes, I agree and I took the same shot at f5.6 but kept the ISO at 400 (very dull dark dark day) which the sensor should handle and the results are more or less the same.

FZ150 WINS!

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sherman_levine
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

cmc1 wrote:

the attached photo was shot from a steady platform and the self timer was activated. why do all my photos look extremely noisy, low res and with that horrible water effect? my smartphone roduces sharpers images as does my FZ 150 thanks in advance

I'd suggest

A mode

Set aperture=2.8

Set NR minus 2 and shapening minus 2

Turn off i.Res

Make sure you have no filter over the lens

Save as high quality Raw+JPG. You could look at the .RW2 with a Raw-compatible processor such as Silkypix or recent Adobe product to see if any of this is due to in-camera processing of the JPG.

Sherm

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GeraldW
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

The lens is sharpest at f/3.2, and f/2.8 and f/4 are just slightly less sharp; but f/5.6 and f/8 are significantly less sharp.  Use of ISO 400 isn't helping either.  An aperture of f/8 is 3 stops slower than f/2.8, that's an 8:1 ratio.  At f/2.8 and ISO 100, your shutter speed would have been 1/160.  Dark day or not, you didn't need ISO 400; your use of f/8 forced the use of ISO 400.

Just about all of us FZ200 "veteran users" have settled on NR-2 to reduce the effects of NR smearing of details.  iA invokes iResolution and that will do some smearing on things like foliage and grass.  Better to use P (program) mode.  I've had three FZ200's (don't ask) and the last one, bought in May 2013 is the best and works very well with NR-2, sharpening +1 (settings my first one hated).  Those settings were also recommended by Graham Houghton in his excellent, and free, e Book on the FZ200.  You might try those settings on yours and see.

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Jerry

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Kevin Coppalotti
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

wrong settings on a noisy sensor. also never use a pin head sensor for landscapes, its never going to resolve the detail, - foliage in particular turns to mush.

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cmc1
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to Kevin Coppalotti, 11 months ago

Another fz200 photo. OK not a great pic but noise and mush are very iphone 3s

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pcake
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

no EXIF info for that one.  what was the ISO and aperture for this pic?

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Timj351
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to Kevin Coppalotti, 11 months ago

Kevin Coppalotti wrote:

wrong settings on a noisy sensor. also never use a pin head sensor for landscapes, its never going to resolve the detail, - foliage in particular turns to mush.

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It's not the best camera for landscapes but it's not the worst either. It just depends on your shooting and processing techniques and how large you view your images. I like to use my FZ200 because it is such a versatile camera but I am also starting to bring my LX7 along too for the more detailed landscape shots or better low light shots. It's not much different from carry an extra lens in your pocket. So I would suggest, if it is feasible, for people to consider an additional small camera like the LX7 to compliment the FZ200. Together, they can handle just about any shooting situation.

Other techniques to consider with the FZ200 are stitching multiple shots, taken manually with full res shots, and stacking by using the 12fps burst mode. There's quite a bit of information available on these techniques.

-Tim

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Erik Ohlson
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

I try not to butt in on FZ200 IQ issues, as I travel all over the world with a pocket camera.

Several people have answered your problem "Spot On".

With the tiny sensor, and consequently tiny focal lengths, at the WIDE end particularly "24/25mm equivalent" the focal length is such that DOF is basically nothing to concern yourself with.

At least at wide angle, shoot "Wide Open". I note, above, that someone says your lens is sharpest at ƒ3.2 - OK. I don't have an FZ200 so I'll accept that, although I'd like to hear where this info comes from. I'd be inclined to shoot wide open, as I do with my TZ/ZS cameras.

SO ƒ3.2, in "A" Aperture mode. Do it. That ensures that diffraction is minimized (ƒ2.8 would minimize it more, but I'll stick with what a - presumably "FZ200 person" says.

With my ZS19 (& now since I broke the 19, my ZS25) I shoot at ƒ3.3 (as wide as it opens) almost ALWAYS - unless I see a really good reason to shoot at a smaller ƒ-stop. ISO 100 unless it's really DARK.

Dim, cloudy day, ISO 100 HANDHELD - shooting wide you need not worry - the camera's O.I.S is all you need:

in this shot you see ƒ5.6 - but it is zoomed out to 12.5mm, and is still "wide open" at - the ƒ-stop is a ratio, not a measurement.

For scenes such as yours, shoot lowest possible ISO. Wides aperture - which ensures that the shutter speed is as high as possible, and o NOT worry about DOF - it's amazingly large - in the case of your photo, the fountain in the center is a fine 'focal point'.

I believe you also have contrast, noise level and such adjustments - listen to the advise of FZ200 people for this, but do NOT stop down in wide angle shots.You did not need a "steady platform & self-timer" for this shot. The OIS is just fine at 1/80th second- and down to 1/20th or less handheld unless you are shaking a lot.

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Rodger1943
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

I have had the FZ150 and the FZ200. The first FZ200 I had I took back because it didn't give as good an image as the FZ150. The second camera was much better and the equal of the FZ150. I have taken a number of landscapes with it and have not had any complaints about its image quality for that sort of subject. It should match your FZ150, if it doesn't, take it back and try another one. There seems to be a big variation in image quality between different FZ200 cameras. Not sure why, I guess slack quality control in an effort to minimise costs.

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Ronomy
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to GeraldW, 11 months ago

The lens is sharpest at f/3.2, and f/2.8 and f/4 are just slightly less sharp; but f/5.6 and f/8 are significantly less sharp. Use of ISO 400 isn't helping either. An aperture of f/8 is 3 stops slower than f/2.8, that's an 8:1 ratio. At f/2.8 and ISO 100, your shutter speed would have been 1/160. Dark day or not, you didn't need ISO 400; your use of f/8 forced the use of ISO 400.

Just about all of us FZ200 "veteran users" have settled on NR-2 to reduce the effects of NR smearing of details. iA invokes iResolution and that will do some smearing on things like foliage and grass. Better to use P (program) mode. I've had three FZ200's (don't ask) and the last one, bought in May 2013 is the best and works very well with NR-2, sharpening +1 (settings my first one hated). Those settings were also recommended by Graham Houghton in his excellent, and free, e Book on the FZ200. You might try those settings on yours and see.

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Jerry

Jerry I am surprised you are using these settings coming from what you were using. Even Grahams photos are noisy as hell when zoomed in 100%.

I am with Sherm here but I get good results upping sharpness a bit to -1 instead of -2. I can use a little noise reduction in post processing if noise is still too high.

Ron

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Ronomy
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Re: whats up with my FZ200 images
In reply to Rodger1943, 11 months ago

I have had the FZ150 and the FZ200. The first FZ200 I had I took back because it didn't give as good an image as the FZ150. The second camera was much better and the equal of the FZ150. I have taken a number of landscapes with it and have not had any complaints about its image quality for that sort of subject. It should match your FZ150, if it doesn't, take it back and try another one. There seems to be a big variation in image quality between different FZ200 cameras. Not sure why, I guess slack quality control in an effort to minimise costs.

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I have had poor fine detail images in landscapes and some very good images. Its the exposure that the camera selects that changes the final results. There is a very narrow exposure range that works best with the FZ200. The LX7 just has a wider range of good exposure so the results are more consistent. That's what I have discovered.

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HampshireIan
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What have I gone And Done???
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

Just bought myself an FZ200 - christ, reading most of the replies on this thread, i'm beginning to wonder what i've gone and done.

The review here gave it a silver award so I thought it might just be ok.  Going by the comments i'm reading, i'd have been better off using my phone camera!

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HampshireIan
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Re: What have I gone And Done???
In reply to HampshireIan, 11 months ago

In actual fact, my bad - it got a Gold award.

Can it be that bad then?

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Timj351
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Re: What have I gone And Done???
In reply to HampshireIan, 11 months ago

HampshireIan wrote:

In actual fact, my bad - it got a Gold award.

Can it be that bad then?

I can only speak for myself but I am quite happy with the performance and image quality of this camera. I understand there could be some lemons out there but I doubt that it is a very high percentage. I think that in most cases it comes down to learning it's strengths and weaknesses. Here is a shot of mine that I think shows the amount of detail it is capable of. It's not an exciting image but I took it because I was still testing the camera and it had the elements I was looking for. It was shot in Raw and processed in PS CS6.

-Tim

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Steen Bay
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Re: What have I gone And Done???
In reply to Timj351, 11 months ago

Timj351 wrote:

HampshireIan wrote:

In actual fact, my bad - it got a Gold award.

Can it be that bad then?

I can only speak for myself but I am quite happy with the performance and image quality of this camera. I understand there could be some lemons out there but I doubt that it is a very high percentage. I think that in most cases it comes down to learning it's strengths and weaknesses. Here is a shot of mine that I think shows the amount of detail it is capable of. It's not an exciting image but I took it because I was still testing the camera and it had the elements I was looking for. It was shot in Raw and processed in PS CS6.

-Tim

Looks good. Is it possible to get close to that if shooting JPEG with optimal settings? (contrast, sharpness, NR, etc.)

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Robiro
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You need to:
In reply to cmc1, 11 months ago

1) Keep your camera at lowest ISO settings all the time.

2) Keep aperture at f3.2, if possible. Don't venture beyond f4 unless absolutely necessary (strong light). The diffraction will kick in and you'll lose resolution fast.

3) Develop your pictures from RAW format. Doing so, you will bypass the Venus image processing engine that tends to add smudging to your shots. Takes more time but the rewards are plentiful.

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Robiro
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Re: What have I gone And Done???
In reply to HampshireIan, 11 months ago

HampshireIan wrote:

Going by the comments i'm reading, i'd have been better off using my phone camera!

Non-sense. Can any phone camera give you 600mm f2.8 equivalent? Think before you write...

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sherman_levine
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Re: What have I gone And Done???
In reply to Steen Bay, 11 months ago

Steen Bay wrote:

Timj351 wrote:

HampshireIan wrote:

In actual fact, my bad - it got a Gold award.

Can it be that bad then?

I can only speak for myself but I am quite happy with the performance and image quality of this camera. I understand there could be some lemons out there but I doubt that it is a very high percentage. I think that in most cases it comes down to learning it's strengths and weaknesses. Here is a shot of mine that I think shows the amount of detail it is capable of. It's not an exciting image but I took it because I was still testing the camera and it had the elements I was looking for. It was shot in Raw and processed in PS CS6.

-Tim

Looks good. Is it possible to get close to that if shooting JPEG with optimal settings? (contrast, sharpness, NR, etc.)

At ISO 100-200 certainly.  Try the ones I suggested to you in my earlier reply.  OTOH, it's no harder to run with Raw these days than JPG. Just a bit more card space and (perhaps - I don't have data) slower burst speed.

Sherm

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