RE: NX300 - need your opinions here regarding sensor issues

Started Mar 29, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Ben Herrmann
Ben Herrmann Forum Pro • Posts: 18,298
RE: NX300 - need your opinions here regarding sensor issues

Hello all:

To begin with, I've come to really enjoy the NX300 - specifically the gorgeously rich color tonality that this camera is capable of. In the past, I've complained about the higher ISO noise scenarios - something I still stand firm on. But as is the case with each camera made by each brand, all have issues of one type or another and you learn to accept them and work around them whenever possible.

One of my issues that I brought up in the past on this forum was that the NX300 (or should I say, my copy of the NX300) had some noise issues that I couldn't adjust after-the-fact. I always found this unusual, but worked around it.

The other night I was asked to shoot a fundraiser for a local state senator who is up for reelection. I used the NX300 along with the Metz 44 AF (dedicated for Samsung) as my indoor lighting duo. I shot everything at ISO 800 with the Metz flash head in the straight up position with the awesome Gary Fong Lightsphere dome attached. This Gary Fong Lightsphere dome (regardless of what camera/flash setup) has always netted me some fantastic results.

But this time around - in particular with the NX300, in the dark sections of the photos (dark clothing, dark corners, etc., I noticed what at first seemed like an alarming amount of hot pixels. At first I thought it was just a different type of noise - and tried to get rid of them using various types of NR after-the-fact (Neat Image, Define, etc.). But nothing would remove these and then I realized that perhaps my copy of the NX300 has an abnormally amount of dead or hot pixels all over the sensor.

So this is where I need your opinions. First of all, here's a the regular photo - at normal viewing size you don't notice anything, but when you blow up the original - beginning at around 50% and up, you will see the hot pixels (red and blue in colors).

First off - here is the normal photo - taken in RAW mode, AWB, Aperture Priority Mode, ISO 800, with the Metz 44 AF flash in bounce mode. Converted with Lightroom. Lens was the 18-55 kit lens.

This is just a very small JPG - don't try to blow it up because yes, it will look horrible.

Now when blowing up the original image (again, starting at around 50%), you can see all of the hot pixels (see below with this 100% crop). All of my photos have this at one point or another. Again, when viewing at normal levels, you don't notice them at first - but when blowing them up a bit, they really become visible and quite pronounced in some cases.

Again, they are more noticeable in the dark area. This is a 100% crop. Each image (depending on scene) can have virtually hundreds of these hot pixels (or what I assume to be hot pixels).

What do you think here? Sure, just about every camera can have hot or dead pixels. But what I love about my Olympus cameras is that you can pixel map the dead/hot pixels out of the camera via an internal setting. With some other brands of cameras you have to send in the camera to the manufacturer to have them do this.

But my concern here is there are so many of these with my camera that its become quite perplexing. Should I send the camera back to Samsung (since the warranty is up in around 4 months), or is there something else I can do at my level to alleviate this problem (I know that Samsung doesn't include a pixel mapping function in their menu setup). And is Samsung warranty repairs a pretty reliable scenario?

Or, are these not hot pixels at all - rather a different kind of noise. Again, they are really noticeable in darker areas (especially so with folks wearing dark clothing such as black or dark blue).

Any input would be appreciated.

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Have a great one....
Bernd (Ben) W. Herrmann
North Carolina, USA

 Ben Herrmann's gear list:Ben Herrmann's gear list
Kodak EasyShare P880 Olympus C-8080 Wide Zoom Olympus C-7070 Wide Zoom Canon PowerShot G12 Olympus XZ-1 +44 more
Samsung NX300M
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