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Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?

Started Jan 15, 2014 | Discussions
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harold1968
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Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
Jan 15, 2014

Of course the A7 doesn't kill HDR photography, which some people love and others don't.

What I mean is that does it remove the need to take more then one Photo ?

IMHO I think, in many cases, the answer is now yes.

The dynamic range is simply awesome. It seems to recover details from inky black, or white outs, that I simply didn't imagine was still there!

I enhance the dynamic range more subtely (or at least I think its subtle) but extreme work is quite easy.

Some amateur examples here

Here is an example where the bridge was a black out. It was easy to bring it back and simultainesouly slightly darken and enhance the sky definition:

The Pipe, Limehouse Cut

The bridge, both top and floor, have been brought back:

The other side of the bridge

I have reinstated the people here:

South Molton Street

The clouds have been reinstated from a white out:

St Pauls

The old church below has been reinstated:

Old and new

Here the old boat was blacked out:

Abandoned docks

Here the garden was shaded completely:

Symmetry

Lastly the ceiling of the bridge and bridge was a total black out:

Best rgds

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TommieH
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

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harold1968
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to TommieH, Jan 15, 2014

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

"Tonaily suckout" nice term, I must use that more often!

For sure we are talking about getting the main subject correctly exposed and using the DR to help with the rest.

The problem with the article is that it suggests that general exposure to the right should be the norm. I simply don't agree with this as you might increase detail in the less extreme top range but you risk loosing pieces althougher. i.e. if you expose to the centre or left you might generate more noise and loose a bit of tonal range in the lower extremes but you don't simply cut off high end detail.

Look, at the end of the days this is all a balance. Its up to the photographer to get it right for the photo. But there is no doubt that with Sony's new FF sensors you are in a better position then any 35mm photographer to date.

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TommieH
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

harold1968 wrote:

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

"Tonaily suckout" nice term, I must use that more often!

For sure we are talking about getting the main subject correctly exposed and using the DR to help with the rest.

The problem with the article is that it suggests that general exposure to the right should be the norm. I simply don't agree with this as you might increase detail in the less extreme top range but you risk loosing pieces althougher. i.e. if you expose to the centre or left you might generate more noise and loose a bit of tonal range in the lower extremes but you don't simply cut off high end detail.

Look, at the end of the days this is all a balance. Its up to the photographer to get it right for the photo. But there is no doubt that with Sony's new FF sensors you are in a better position then any 35mm photographer to date.

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harold.co.il

Hm... no.

We're talking about gathering as much data (light) as possible without loosing any data (clipping highlights). That is not the same as getting the correct exposure when shooting but the same as getting the best possible exposure for post production. Do you see the difference?

I can't (don't have much time) to explain it better. You should read the linked material if you're interested and also the follow up: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/optimizing_exposure.shtml

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Tommie

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Miki Nemeth
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Are these out-of-the camera A7 HDR photos?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

Hi Harold,

I love your photos. This way even a boring scene can be photographed in much more interesting way. I really love colors, colors buried in deep shadows. I highly appreciate that you shared your images. I do photography for pure fun, and I can see the fun part of your photos.

Thank You so much, Miki

PS: Are these out-of-the camera (A7) HDRs?

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Felice62
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

Harold,

Yest the A7 has and shows off a great dynamic range

It's awesome, indeed!

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love_them_all
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to TommieH, Jan 15, 2014

HDR is a good technique but HDR is not for everything. The trend is still being able to exposure to the desire result and have enough room to play with highlight and shadow like in shooting Tri X, but in color. I believe we will see this kind of super DR sensor one day and able to completely ignore SNR under most conditions

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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harold1968
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Re: Are these out-of-the camera A7 HDR photos?
In reply to Miki Nemeth, Jan 15, 2014

Miki Nemeth wrote:

Hi Harold,

I love your photos. This way even a boring scene can be photographed in much more interesting way. I really love colors, colors buried in deep shadows. I highly appreciate that you shared your images. I do photography for pure fun, and I can see the fun part of your photos.

Thank You so much, Miki

PS: Are these out-of-the camera (A7) HDRs?

thx

no these are just a single shot processed in LR

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darkdirtydwarf
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

This camera definitely simplifies things in PP when you want to get back some detail in the shadows

I love your South Molton Street image!

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ProfHankD
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Dynamic range
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

The A7/A7R have about 1 stop greater dynamic range than the NEX-7, which is already a couple of stops better than things like a Canon 70D. The freaky thing is that this means the A7/A7R have slightly more dynamic range than normal instantaneous human eyesight!  This means that the dynamic range you see at a glance can pretty much be captured in one shot. However, people viewing your photo get time to move their eye about, and if you do that when taking a photo, you'll find there is a lot more than 14 Ev of dynamic range in some scenes out there.  If you want all of it captured, not just what you see at a glance, multi-shot HDR is still needed.

As I observed in my article at DPReview comparing A7 vs. NEX-7+LT , you can easily lose that extra stop in correcting dark corners on FF, which would make multi-shot HDR just as necessary as it was on a NEX-7. However, the corners are usually fine a few stops from wide open.

Ok, so you get your HDR captured maybe in one shot. That still leaves the tonal mapping problem for output devices that have nowhere near 14 Ev dynamic range. Arguambly, HDR is as much about this tonal remapping as it is about getting the dynamic range captured, and so you may still need HDR processing software to get the most out of even single-shot captures from cameras like the A7/A7R. Actually, dynamic range of things like printed photos is tiny, so even single-shots from cheap compact cameras can benefit from HDR tone-mapping algorithms....

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Miki Nemeth
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Harold's A7 single-shot photos with HDR look.
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

harold1968 wrote:

no these are just a single shot processed in LR

Hi Harold, incredible. I am getting very proud to own an A7. I am really sorry that you have not included shutter speed, aperture, ISO EXIF data into your terrific images. Hmm, if I can have these kind of photos with a single shot of A7, I'd reconsider changing back to shooting RAW and post-processing images with Ligthroom.

Thank You, Harold for showing me/us some more possibilities with A7 photography.

Miki

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Brian_Smith
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

harold1968 wrote:

Of course the A7 doesn't kill HDR photography, which some people love and others don't.

What I mean is that does it remove the need to take more then one Photo ?

IMHO I think, in many cases, the answer is now yes.

The dynamic range is simply awesome. It seems to recover details from inky black, or white outs, that I simply didn't imagine was still there!

I enhance the dynamic range more subtely (or at least I think its subtle) but extreme work is quite easy.

Some amateur examples here

The old church below has been reinstated:

Love this shot, Harold. I like that you've keep the look subtle and natural. Well done!

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TommieH
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to love_them_all, Jan 15, 2014

love_them_all wrote:

HDR is a good technique but HDR is not for everything. The trend is still being able to exposure to the desire result and have enough room to play with highlight and shadow like in shooting Tri X, but in color. I believe we will see this kind of super DR sensor one day and able to completely ignore SNR under most conditions

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

What i wrote wasn't about the commonly known "HDR" though but about maximizing dynamic range with a single shot.

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Tommie

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Robgo2
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to TommieH, Jan 15, 2014

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

Here is an interesting and provocative counterpoint to ETTR.

Ctein: ETTR is a bunch of bull

Rob

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harold1968
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Re: Harold's A7 single-shot photos with HDR look.
In reply to Miki Nemeth, Jan 15, 2014

Miki Nemeth wrote:

harold1968 wrote:

no these are just a single shot processed in LR

Hi Harold, incredible. I am getting very proud to own an A7. I am really sorry that you have not included shutter speed, aperture, ISO EXIF data into your terrific images. Hmm, if I can have these kind of photos with a single shot of A7, I'd reconsider changing back to shooting RAW and post-processing images with Ligthroom.

Thank You, Harold for showing me/us some more possibilities with A7 photography.

Miki

thanks

the exif is all there in the flickr link in my signature

best rgds

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harold1968
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to Brian_Smith, Jan 15, 2014

Brian_Smith wrote:

harold1968 wrote:

Of course the A7 doesn't kill HDR photography, which some people love and others don't.

What I mean is that does it remove the need to take more then one Photo ?

IMHO I think, in many cases, the answer is now yes.

The dynamic range is simply awesome. It seems to recover details from inky black, or white outs, that I simply didn't imagine was still there!

I enhance the dynamic range more subtely (or at least I think its subtle) but extreme work is quite easy.

Some amateur examples here

The old church below has been reinstated:

Love this shot, Harold. I like that you've keep the look subtle and natural. Well done!

thanks

with the DR of the A7 its easy to go all warhol. one has to restrain oneself

I like to try and convey what I felt when I saw the scene

rgds

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JeffGo
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to harold1968, Jan 15, 2014

Here's an example of an "HDR-like" shot from NEX-7. Not a new feature of the a7 series

NEX-7, Sigma 19, cropped and PP in LR

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harold1968
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to JeffGo, Jan 15, 2014

JeffGo wrote:

Here's an example of an "HDR-like" shot from NEX-7. Not a new feature of the a7 series

NEX-7, Sigma 19, cropped and PP in LR

yes true

I also had amazing DR form the NEx-6

The A7 just takes it up a level

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JeffGo
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to Robgo2, Jan 15, 2014

I have to agree with that. Here's where the A7x killer Zebras feature saves you in real time. For both my NEX-7 and A7r, I nearly always wind up with blown highlights, so it's kill the highlights and bump the shadows in LR. This works pretty well but why not just eliminate the blown highlights when taking the picture? The exposure comp wheel is your friend (although a tad stiff, I'd rather that than too loose).

Thanks to someone on the forum for pointing out the article that explained all this.

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harold1968
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Re: Does the A7(r) kill HDR picture taking ?
In reply to Robgo2, Jan 15, 2014

Robgo2 wrote:

TommieH wrote:

You are right but you are wrong as well. Higher DR is great, but have you read about "tonality suckout" and ETTR (Exposing To The Right)? The problem when you lift the shadows the way you do is that the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) is worse and results in "tonality suckout". That may not be a problem in all scenarios but saying that one basically can disregard under exposure without penalties like you seem to suggest is still false.

If you are interested read:
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/essays/on_safari.shtml (under "Avoid Tonality Suckout!")
http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

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Tommie

Here is an interesting and provocative counterpoint to ETTR.

Ctein: ETTR is a bunch of bull

Rob

quite right too

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harold.co.il

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