FZ200 F2.8 600mm ISO400 100% crop

Started Aug 26, 2012 | Discussions thread
VincentR Regular Member • Posts: 124
Re: Setting the record straight.

Erik Ohlson wrote:
VincentR wrote, in part:

Anyone who has an editing program like Photoshop will have a great advantage, but such a program will cost more than the camera.

To clarify: "Full PhotoShop" DOES cost a lot!

But - not to worry - I, personally, use PSE8 on an old iMac (OSX 10.4.11) and have never heard of anything CSE does better. I'm sure there must be SOMETHING to justify the extra cost, I've just not heard of it.

PSE is pretty inexpensive, but I got my PSE8 on eBay for even less, and also my earlier PSE4 which is almost as good.

I'm told that Picasa (which I have not tried) is free.

The Topaz DeNoise plugin cost as much as I spent for my PSE8, but is well worth the extra cost for my Mac - if you use a PC, Ximagic Denoiser is free.


Maybe you're right, Erik. I've never compared PSE with the full version of Photoshop. I use the Extended version of Photoshop. The useful features which I think would be very relevant for anyone trying to match the image quality from the FZ200 with that from a DSLR, would be "Merge to HDR" to reduce noise and increase dynamic range, "Photomerge" for automatic stitching of images, and "Image Stacking" of multiple, almost identical shots, which one could take with the FZ200 in burst mode at 12fps.

Image stacking might be preferable to auto-exposure bracketing if one has difficulty getting a natural effect when merging to HDR, as some folks claim to experience.

I might be getting a bit technical here, and out of my depth, but I understand that 'photonic shot noise' is a much greater source of noise with small sensors because, for any given scene, the smaller sensor is exposed to a smaller amount of total light, at the same ISO setting of course. The amount of shot noise, on average, is given by the square root of the number of photons the sensor is exposed to.The image stacking process in Photoshop will select the best exposed pixel from each image.

I don't have much reason to use this feature with my DSLRs, but I recall experimenting with it some years ago with my Canon 5D and found that the resulting image from several stacked images taken at ISO 1600 had about the same quality, in terms of noise and resolution, as a single shot taken at ISO 400 with 2 stops greater exposure, and if not quite as good as the ISO 400 shot, certainly better than an ISO 800 shot with one stop greater exposure.

I recall I was stacking 5 or 6 images. Stacking 12 images should produce an even better result, if the scene is static and camera is on tripod.

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