G1X Mark I vs. Mark II RAW Comparison

Started Apr 9, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Ketan G Regular Member • Posts: 322
G1X Mark I vs. Mark II RAW Comparison

Following up on my previous thread comparing the Mark II with the Sony RX100, I want to compare the Imaging Resource still life files for the Canon G1X Mark I and Mark II. The latter is on order, but I have never owned the former.

Some notes for this comparison:

  • All files were opened in the latest version of ACR
  • Support for the Mark II is preliminary and may not represent the final iteration
  • Both files were treated equally with some shadow boosting, highlight recover, slight clarity and vibrance enhancements. This is how I would normally treat the files. Tests of everything set to zero do not represent anything realistic for my usage.
  • The files were opened in Photoshop CC, but were not edited in any way
  • Crops provided are 100% without resizing, saved for web at 100%

First, I have two sets of ISO 100 comparisons. I have labeled which crop is from the Mark I vs. Mark II, but they have been placed either adjacently or top and bottom in the same file. Make sure to view the original size:

And here at ISO 1600:

My observations:

  • The Mark I is slightly sharper at ISO 100. This could be due to a higher-resolving lens, a weaker low-pass filter, or both.
  • The Mark II's processing shows an increase in contrast over the Mark I.
  • I did not see a major dynamic range difference in pushing these files. If anything, the shadow noise was slightly greater on the Mark II, but it could be because the exposure was slightly darker.
  • At ISO 1600, I am seeing greater noise in the Mark II image, which is surprising since the pre-release analyses suggested it was either the same Mark I sensor or newer. This could be due to the preliminary support from ACR rather than it being the final version, but in my experience the final version is not a major departure from the provisional version.
  • A comparison at ISO 1600 is not totally fair because it negates the larger aperture advantage from the Mark II. We can anticipate that the Mark II's stabilization is improved as well.
  • This test says nothing about usability and how easy it is to get the "right" shot.
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