Selectable color space
The DiMAGE 7Hi is the first prosumer level digital camera to provide in-camera selectable color space. The 'Color Mode' menu has been extended to provide an 'Adobe RGB' option, this provides the user with an extended color gamut and more accurate color reproduction ideal for print or professional use. Additionally you can also choose to have the color (ICC) profile to be embeded in the header of the JPEG / TIFF file so that ICC smart applications such as Adobe Photoshop will immediately be aware of the profile used and display the image correctly when loaded. This option is enabled from the Setup menu.
Oddly when shooting with color profile embedding enabled the camera saves JPEG files with the .JPE extension and also creates a .THM file. I can imagine there will be the odd third party application which may not recognize the .JPE extension (although major applications like ACDSee, Photoshop etc. won't have a problem).
Remember to view the Adobe RGB image correctly you will need to download it and open it in an ICC aware application such as Adobe Photoshop.
|Color Mode: Natural (sRGB)
|Color Mode: Adobe RGB
JPEG / TIFF / RAW Image Size & Quality
Standard Test Scene
The DiMAGE 7Hi slightly alters the range of image quality options compared to the DiMAGE 7/7i. It introduces a new 'Extra Fine' even lower compression JPEG quality (images around 3.2 MB a piece) and also does away with the 'Economy' JPEG setting.
You can choose from the three JPEG qualities or TIFF at 2560 x 1920 (full native resolution), 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960 or 640 x 480. As well as RAW format which is fixed at 2560 x 1920.
To give an impression of what some of the combinations of image size and quality produce the table below is a cross reference of some of them:
- 2560 x 1920 RAW
- 2560 x 1920 Super Fine (TIFF)
- 2560 x 1920 JPEG Extra Fine
- 2560 x 1920 JPEG Fine
- 2560 x 1920 JPEG Standard
- 1600 x 1200 JPEG Extra Fine
- 1280 x 960 JPEG Extra Fine
- 640 x 480 JPEG Extra Fine
Images below are cropped 240 x 100 area of the image magnified
200% (nearest neighbour).
Minolta's new 'Extra Fine' JPEG setting pretty much rules the 'Super Fine' (TIFF) option redundant. It would be very difficult to find visible difference between these two image modes, and obviously there is a large storage advantage in using the Extra Fine setting. The RAW image still has the same dotted Bayer artifacts we have seen from previous Minolta RAW converted images. I'm also a little disappointed to see the less than perfect downsampling for lower size images, especially 640 x 480.