D3 sensor efficiency

Started Nov 18, 2007 | Discussions thread
OP ejmartin Veteran Member • Posts: 6,274
Re: D3 sensor efficiency

Jay Williams wrote:

Even according to the engineering
definition, it's over two stops better at ISO 1600.


Are you saying that the D3 has more than two stops better dynamic
range (difference between darkest and lightest areas that hold
detail) than the D200 both at ISO 1600, or that it has the same noise
at ISO 1600 as the D200 has at ISO 400?

Both, really. I have not tested the D200 myself, but was referring to Roger Clark's analysis at

CCD sensors don't have separate amplifications at different ISO's, so DR pretty much goes down directly proportional to ISO. He finds DR of 10.1 stops at ISO 400 and 8.1 stops at ISO 1600 for the D200. I found 10.2 stops DR for the D3 at ISO 1600.

This again is according to the engineering definition of DR which is rather liberal. A second caveat is that I'm not sure Clark corrects for the clipped blacks in Nikon raw (he might or might not; he doesn't say); if he is not making that correction, he is underestimating the read noise by a factor 1.66 and quoting a DR for the D200 that is too high by .7 stops for every ISO.

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