Dynamic Range: D5100/D7000

Started May 21, 2011 | Discussions thread
Zane Paxton Veteran Member • Posts: 6,947
Re: Recent findings

eNo wrote:

No improvement in the highlights when compared to its predecessor sensor (D300):

Significant improvement in the shadows at base ISO:

that quickly vanishes when ISO goes higher:

Bottom line: expose correctly and don't expect magical sensor miracles.

DR is the primary reason I bought the D7000 to replace my aging D2x. I'd guess that the D7000 has about a 2-1/2 stop advantage over the D2x; it's quite dramatic! Much of that ammazing DR gets compromized as you increase the ISO; I notice that the DR is substantially diminished by ISO 400 and the shadow noise is definitielly there. In high contrast/high range situation, one should have the discipline to shoot at ISI 100 to get the optimal results.

At ISO 100, I can easily darken the highlights by 1-1/2 stops (if it was exposed carefully and correctly) and then pull up the shadows by as much as 3-1/2 to even 4 stops. That allows as much as 5 to 5-1/2 stops of tonal compression. I've shot with the D3x and it is in that league. Mind you the D3x has more and higher quality detail in the deep shadows that can allow about 6 stops of tonal compression.

D7000 high DR shots:

Note the detail in the background in the bright windows on the left:

The tonal range for the shadows in the shops to the bright sun on the building was probably about 13 stops:

Here's two from the D3x as a comparision; I darkened the highlights probably 1-1/2 stops and pulled up the shadows as much as 5 stops:

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Nikon D7000 & D2x
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 Zane Paxton's gear list:Zane Paxton's gear list
Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D ED-IF Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm F4G ED VR +2 more
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