Em-1 Noise in Low ISO, Low light shots.

Started Jan 29, 2014 | Discussions
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Paco 316
Paco 316 Senior Member • Posts: 1,094
Re: Em-1 Noise in Low ISO, Low light shots.
2

TangoR wrote:

It seems that I am getting some noise in Low(ish) light ISO 200 images. Usually in normal condition my images are pretty much noise free. But IN the attached image (ORF converted to JPG in Aperture) there what I would call noise at ISO 200.

Is this normal? Is there a setting I missed on the camera?

Noise type stuff in the Sky portion.

You will not notice that on a print, and a print is what matters, not what you see on a screen at 100% .

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Gianluca Grossi Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

This is a shot I took some day ago, it's well under exposed in the lower part...

I over expose this shot by 2 stop in lightroom and tried to have the better result with noise while maintaing a good amount of sharpness...but you can easily see noise in the darkness part of the image, for ex. under the balcony

This is what you can achieve with PN, no noise and more detail/sharpness in the entire image...

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Sourze Forum Member • Posts: 94
Re: Good point
1

Michael Jardine wrote:

Sourze wrote:

I think I understand developing raw-files pretty good. Noise is a weakness with the u4/3 sensors. The only reason i stay with u4/3 is the compact size of the cameras.

Sourze has two good points. My first thought when I saw this photo was "it's beautiful". My second was "hmm, but it may be a bit under-exposed". As he suggests, increasing your exposure a smidge will help with noise. It was only when I pixel-peeped, that I saw the 'noise' you are referring to - which led me to ask, what is the purpose of this photo? If it's to publish on the web or print it in a magazine, or print out up to 11x14, you'll be fine.

If you want to publish it in a coffee table book or make a highway billboard out of it you'd be better off with a D800. And this takes me back to Sourze's second point. We all know why we like M43

Hmm - but beware of pixel-peeping with your 36MP D800 photos (or your A7R photos) - you'll still see noise and blurs. Because, after all, you're still pixel peeping!

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Michael
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You're right, I'm pixel peeping and will always do

I borrowed a D800 once.. It's got an amazing sensor and when viewing images at normal size (not 100 %) I see less noice than from my E-M5... too bad it's got the size and weight of a bowling ball though.

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knickerhawk Veteran Member • Posts: 4,476
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread
3

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

I use PN from one year and I can trusty say that it can do an unbelievable work in supressing luminance noise while maintaing a lots of detail, much much more of Aperture and LR that I own.
Until you use it (with the right setting), you can't understand what this program is capable of doing.

It uses the Noise Ninja noise reduction engine, which I've used.  I understand perfectly well what you're talking about but even as good as Photo (Noise) Ninja might be at handling noise, it's never as good as starting with a properly exposed and noise-free file.  The only time a better noise reduction strategy is the correct answer to give somebody who's got a problem with creating noisy images is when the exposure is optimized to begin with and the raw files produced by the camera still include unacceptable amounts of noise.

Gianluca Grossi Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

knickerhawk wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

I use PN from one year and I can trusty say that it can do an unbelievable work in supressing luminance noise while maintaing a lots of detail, much much more of Aperture and LR that I own.
Until you use it (with the right setting), you can't understand what this program is capable of doing.

It uses the Noise Ninja noise reduction engine, which I've used. I understand perfectly well what you're talking about but even as good as Photo (Noise) Ninja might be at handling noise, it's never as good as starting with a properly exposed and noise-free file. The only time a better noise reduction strategy is the correct answer to give somebody who's got a problem with creating noisy images is when the exposure is optimized to begin with and the raw files produced by the camera still include unacceptable amounts of noise.

pls take a look at the pics I post...

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Iliah Borg Forum Pro • Posts: 19,586
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

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Gianluca Grossi Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

-- hide signature --

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

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Iliah Borg Forum Pro • Posts: 19,586
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

Point is you do not know how raw is exposed.

-- hide signature --
Gianluca Grossi Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

Point is you do not know how raw is exposed.

-- hide signature --

I see the histogram of the raw file in LR.
But the point here that i pulled the exposure by 2 stop and in the darkness area you don't see noise while maintaing all the details with Photo ninja.
you can not deny this point.

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Iliah Borg Forum Pro • Posts: 19,586
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread
1

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

Point is you do not know how raw is exposed.

I see the histogram of the raw file in LR.

No, you see the histogram of converted image. That histogram changes with the adjustments you are applying, while raw data and subsequently the raw histogram does not.

It might be that your shot is more underexposed than you think. Can I see that raw?

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Gianluca Grossi Forum Member • Posts: 85
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

Point is you do not know how raw is exposed.

I see the histogram of the raw file in LR.

No, you see the histogram of converted image. That histogram changes with the adjustments you are applying, while raw data and subsequently the raw histogram does not.

It might be that your shot is more underexposed than you think. Can I see that raw?

-- hide signature --

I don't understand what you mean...but here the link to the raw file:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/p4kuxk220ihdg5i/_1210874.ORF

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D200_4me Veteran Member • Posts: 3,875
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

knickerhawk wrote:

First, sky noise is not uncommon at all in these lower midtones. However, unlike the claims of some in this thread, it is by no means a problem limited to MFT cameras (or Oly bodies in particular).

Second, it's no

Yes, I've discovered that myself recently when pixel peeping too much with my E-M1 files.  The outdoors atmosphere/sky does indeed introduce that 'noisy' look to some extent.  If I go inside and shoot my table, the files are clean as can be at ISO 200.  So yes, there's certainly something about the sky that does make certain images look noisy to some extent.  I would bet if you go indoors and do some test shots in good light at ISO 200, you'll find the files are very clean.

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Pete Berry Senior Member • Posts: 2,628
Re: Good point

Sourze wrote:

Michael Jardine wrote:

Sourze wrote:

I think I understand developing raw-files pretty good. Noise is a weakness with the u4/3 sensors. The only reason i stay with u4/3 is the compact size of the cameras.

Sourze has two good points. My first thought when I saw this photo was "it's beautiful". My second was "hmm, but it may be a bit under-exposed". As he suggests, increasing your exposure a smidge will help with noise. It was only when I pixel-peeped, that I saw the 'noise' you are referring to - which led me to ask, what is the purpose of this photo? If it's to publish on the web or print it in a magazine, or print out up to 11x14, you'll be fine.

If you want to publish it in a coffee table book or make a highway billboard out of it you'd be better off with a D800. And this takes me back to Sourze's second point. We all know why we like M43

Hmm - but beware of pixel-peeping with your 36MP D800 photos (or your A7R photos) - you'll still see noise and blurs. Because, after all, you're still pixel peeping!

-- hide signature --

Michael
www.Qamera.com
www.Qamera.Tumblr.com
www.Pinterest.com/Qamera

You're right, I'm pixel peeping and will always do

I borrowed a D800 once.. It's got an amazing sensor and when viewing images at normal size (not 100 %) I see less noice than from my E-M5... too bad it's got the size and weight of a bowling ball though.

The interesting thing to me is that the "noise" seems restricted to the sky - not darker structures such as the bridge. And on closer inspection with monitor brightness cranked up, it looks like a gradient problem with micro-posterization, not random noise. I'd be interested in seeing the RAW developed as a ProPhoto-RGB 16-bit file, if this isn't your current workflow.

Pete

Iliah Borg Forum Pro • Posts: 19,586
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread
1

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

Iliah Borg wrote:

Are you shooting raw, but judging exposure from JPEGs?

these are all jpeg from raw file...what's the point?

Point is you do not know how raw is exposed.

I see the histogram of the raw file in LR.

No, you see the histogram of converted image. That histogram changes with the adjustments you are applying, while raw data and subsequently the raw histogram does not.

It might be that your shot is more underexposed than you think. Can I see that raw?

I don't understand what you mean...but here the link to the raw file:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/p4kuxk220ihdg5i/_1210874.ORF

Thank you. Looking at the raw histogram, red and especially blue channels are underexposed, blue by 1 stop.

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TangoR OP Junior Member • Posts: 46
Re: Em-1 Noise in Low ISO, Low light shots.
1

So a a bit of history about the photo I took. I intentionally underexposed the photo (cause it looked great in the EVF). I do notice the "sky" noise in some of my underexposed photos. Again its not a great deal at all. I was just curious about it. Ill just remember to maybe expose correctly and reduce exposure in Post process (probably a better way to do it anyways)

Also thanks for the critique. I have a processed version of the image. Quite happy with the image and the 12-40 + EM-1 combination.

Please let me know any inputs about the photo. The following Post process steps were applied (all in aperture).

1. Some noise reduction.

2. Boost contrast.

3. Adjust Black Point.

4. Increase Saturation.

LaMesa Senior Member • Posts: 2,357
There is a pattern....

...which is very evenly distributed over the whole picture, bright or dark, contrasty or not - it is everywhere. This pattern is not or not only noise, but is very likely a characteristic of this RAW-conversion.

Herbert

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TangoR OP Junior Member • Posts: 46
Re: Em-1 Noise in Low ISO, Low light shots.

Ya know what. After looking at my noise reduction results I reached a conclusion that noise does not bother me at all. However Noise reduction artifacts do!

So heres the image again with no noise reduction at all. (I think its pretty good)

108 Contributing Member • Posts: 571
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread

Gianluca you're crazy...are you actually bothered by the little noise on your file ???

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108 Contributing Member • Posts: 571
Re: Em-1 Noise in Low ISO, Low light shots.
2

"Noise" in the sky, Gianluca has "noise" under the balcony...you people are all mad...lol

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Robgo2 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,680
Re: Sigh...so much bad advice in this thread
1

knickerhawk wrote:

Gianluca Grossi wrote:

I use PN from one year and I can trusty say that it can do an unbelievable work in supressing luminance noise while maintaing a lots of detail, much much more of Aperture and LR that I own.
Until you use it (with the right setting), you can't understand what this program is capable of doing.

It uses the Noise Ninja noise reduction engine, which I've used. I understand perfectly well what you're talking about but even as good as Photo (Noise) Ninja might be at handling noise, it's never as good as starting with a properly exposed and noise-free file. The only time a better noise reduction strategy is the correct answer to give somebody who's got a problem with creating noisy images is when the exposure is optimized to begin with and the raw files produced by the camera still include unacceptable amounts of noise.

Your information regarding Photo Ninja is incorrect in at least one important detail.  The latest version of Photo Ninja (v1.2) uses Noise Ninja 4, which is not available as a stand alone program.  Prior versions of Noise Ninja were stand alone, and you probably used one of them in the past.  NN4 is a quantum leap better than NN3, so if you have not tested PN 1.2, then you have no idea how effective its NR can be.  I am confident that the image in question in this thread would be child's play for it.  However, the best NR that I have seen is the Prime NR engine in DxO 9.  Unfortunately, as a raw convertor, DxO is inferior to Photo Ninja in almost every other way. I bought DxO 9 to have available for very high ISO images with extremely heavy noise.  For everything else, I use Photo Ninja and get better results.

I do agree with your point about proper exposure being the best way to minimize noise, but stuff happens, and even the best of us sometimes underexpose.  In those instances, it is important to have the best NR tools and to know how to use them properly.

Rob

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