Pointless E-3 / 5D comparison 2

Started Nov 17, 2007 | Discussions thread
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dgilder Regular Member • Posts: 162
Pointless E-3 / 5D comparison 2

If you missed the original see here: http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1022&thread=25627233

Same caveats apply, FF vs 4/3 isn't comprable, its a waste of my time, primes vs zooms is useless, handcapping one cam or the other invalidates everything, blah blah blah. See the other thread for plenty more reasons. Please refer to the word "Pointless" in the subject before posting about the pointlessness of doing this.

I went to the state capitol today to do a head to head between the cameras, but in a more friendly lighting environment.

The Gear:

Oly E-3 w/ 12-60mm
Canon 5D w/ 50mm f1.8 (metal mount)

The Rules:

E-3 at 29mm to better mimic 5D's magnification at 12MP with a 50mm (28mm would have been better though).

Both cameras in aperture priority mode set to f11, with auto metering.

Autofocus on the star, using center AF point.

E-3 at +0.5 exposure comp, and 5D at +0.3 - This is to even out the 5D's slightly hot ISO values.

ISO 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, and 3200 compared.

Auto white balance

Photoshop CS3 with ACR used to process, with ACR default values, no tweaks etc. This means 0 Luminous noise reduction, and 25 color noise by default.

The Combined Results (you'll need to look at the full size to really see the difference:

Full size: http://davidgilder.com/misc/5DE3/E35D_Dome.jpg


Using ACR to process the photos, we can really see how good of a job the E-3 is doing at ISO 1600. It is only slightly noiser than the 5D at that point. The 5D has the clear advantage at ISO 3200, the E-3 has many artifacts in its noise. No surprises here, the 5D has its reputation for low light capabilities for a reason.

What does surprise me is how well the new Oly noise reduction algorithms work, comparing this to the shots processed in Olympus Master. The fact that the camera can run these same algorithms on JPEGs on the fly really speaks to the processing power of the camera.

Side Notes:

This was inspired by a series someone shot with one of the pre production cameras of a church ceiling (or something like that). I don't recall who that was but this is just a repeat of that concept, but with both cameras.

The articulating live view came very much in handy while shooting some other shots of the dome. I used the zoom option of live view with manual focus and its really nice to be able manually focus without having to be upside down on the floor with my neck bent:

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