More fun with RX100, the true wide angle specs!

Started Feb 11, 2013 | Discussions thread
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YiannisPP Senior Member • Posts: 1,621
More fun with RX100, the true wide angle specs!

I have been playing with the RX100 yet again, following a suggestion by AdamT in another thread who pointed out that the uncorrected RAW RX100 WA photos are actually wider than 28mm. It was also discussed that the effective resolution of the OOC jpeg at wide angle is actually less than 20MPs, which was something I knew but I hadn't thought of quantifying.

I thought I'd experiment and find out what happens. So I converted RAW files in Sony's IDC, turning off the distortion correction. Then I corrected the distortion myself with PTlens (using the fish-eye correction option) so that the geometry matched the OOC jpegs almost exactly.

The result? It seems to me that there are around 17MPs left after the (quite severe!) distortion is corrected and the image is reshaped to fit the 3/2 aspect ratio output. So that seems to be the effective resolution and all the camera does is upsizing it to 20MP before it churns out the jpeg. So not "really" 20 MPs at WA...

Now I'm not sure this is the whole story as I just started understanding all this. Apart from the actual number of MP one is left with, there's also the stretching of the remaining MPs in the file and that reduces the resolution further locally where the stretching is stronger, I think...

By the way, this is something that happens to most of the modern compact zooms to a varying degree, so the RX100 is not the only one by any means.

Also of interest maybe is that by doing the above, one can get a 18.5 MP, 25mm WA equivalent, 1.63 aspect ratio image out of RAW (before cropping the sides to give it a 3/2 aspect ratio). I took the same test shot with my Panasonic TZ7 (25mm equivalent WA) and the RX100 RAW obtained as described was even a little wider. Properly corrected to the exactly same effect as the OOC jpeg.

Here's an example demonstating this. First is the 28mm-wide OOC jpeg (as it came out of the camera), followed by the wider, 25mm equivalent shot enabled by RAW. I thought it's interesting to know that it might be possible to get something more out of a photo that is hidden by default....

OOC jpeg at full WA (28mm equivalent)

The same capture processed from RAW (now 25mm equivalent)

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS3 (Lumix DMC-TZ7) Sony RX100
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