Newer Bridge Cameras VS Older DSLR, Better (Image Quality)??

Started 4 days ago | Discussions thread
James Stirling
James Stirling Senior Member • Posts: 1,028
Re: "

mosswings wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

mosswings wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

fishy wishy wrote:

The different bridge camera types can be mixed up to the point of being disingenuous when arguing about them

A 28mm2 1 1/2.3 sensor could net you a massive zoom but ultimate quality is not there. A 1" sensor (112mm) won't have more than a 600mm equivalent, just about birdwatching length, and is a relatively premium item though still under $1,000

28-116 (1") = 2 stops difference

4/5 stops re size to FF is a big gap to overcome, presumably only 3 to the 4/3 sensor though olympus sensors were widely criticised at the time of the e-510...

The latest Sony 1" sensor cameras at worst high ISO are within one stop of current m43 cameras . Thanks to the combination of m43 having a too high base ISO and the 1" sensor cameras being a tad ahead in tech at their respective base ISO there is nothing in it. m43 is 2 stops behind the best FF . As for the 600mm equiv 1" sensor cameras being under $1000 not even close

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?Ntt=sony%20cyber-shot%20dsc-rx10%20iv&N=0&InitialSearch=yes&sts=ps

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Jim Stirling
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” John Adams

This is a very interesting plot from photons to photos:

http://www.photonstophotos.net/Charts/PDR.htm#Panasonic%20Lumix%20DC-GH5,Panasonic%20Lumix%20DMC-G85,Sony%20DSC-RX100M5,Sony%20ILCE-6500,Sony%20ILCE-7M3

I usually compare PDR at ISO 200, because it's more typical for photos to be taken at higher than base ISO.

Not for me I take the vast majority of my photos at base ISO irrespective of what sensor size I am using And believe me the 200 base ISO of m43 is a pet peeve of mine Also If you are looking to get the maximum image quality from your camera you would be using base ISO

When you do this, you move out of the games-playing area of the PDR curve, and you find some remarkable things - that the RX100 is about 1 stop worse than the best u4/3 sensors, but those u4/3 sensors are within 1/4 stop of top APS-C sensors. If you're comparing the RX100 to a more typical 16MP u4/3 sensor, it's within 1/3 stop. So overall the best u4/3 sensors are shadowing APS-C much more than 1" is shadowing the best u4/3 sensors. The stagnation of sensor tech in most of the u4/3 line is the reason for this.

You are disadvantaging other formats that do not have too high a base ISO . Plus a rather important point is that those charts are based on what the camera maker claims is the ISO setting. In other words they make no attempt to compare like to like , so I do not see them as a great way to compare sensors.

DXO methodology at least attempts to compare on a level playing field though their measured ISO has its own issues

The difference can be very marked here is the E-M1II compared to the Pentax K-5 II there is a full stop difference

As Bill himself points out in this post "Olympus dominates the list of cameras with Measured ISO well below the ISO setting:"

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/60388246

In the end charts and graphs not withstanding they both use different methodologies the bottom line is at the shadow end of the DR scale m43 cameras are very poor indeed. Here is the supposedly best m43 camera the E-MI II compared to 1" , APS and FF at their respective base ISO settings .

This is how things work out with regards to base ISO DR

Even if you choose to penalise the cameras that have a lower base ISO and give the E-M1 II a 1 stop less push it is till far weaker than APS and FF and broadly on par with the Sony 1" sensor cameras with their 125 base ISO. I am certainly biased towards base ISO shooting so mu opinion is naturally skewed towards shooting their. I am a long term m43 shooter and also shoot Nikon and Sony FF , though I have not bought an APS cameras since about 2005

Again if you look at actual low light RAW images I would say that the best m43 is less than one stop better than the best 1" cameras .

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Jim Stirling
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” John Adams

Jim, all this is true, but in my defense I compare cameras the way that I observe that I shoot them, because using any other criterion would give me misleading results for my most common use cases!

I agree totally hence why I mentioned where my bias lies A high ISO low light shooter will have very different priorities than me . We are both right { which is a s good as it gets for me   }  as we are basing our opinions on what is important to ourself

After all, Canon has been drug over the coals for years for having cameras with inadequate dynamic range - but in reality, their sensors have not been ISOless, or to state it another way, increasing ISO improves performance due to gain tailoring in the imaging chain. The result is that at commonly used ISOs, there's not that much difference between them and Nikon or Sony products. Now - fixed pattern noise is another story, but leave that aside for now.

For sure if you look at high ISO the Canon sensors compete very well . I believe they are very popular with the astrophotography guys

Small cameras are frequently paired with slow zooms. Slow zooms often require kicking up ISO to hold shutter speed. Of course, you can run out and buy a quiver of primes or gargantuan fast lenses, but let's be honest...most owners own less than 2 lenses on average. Owners of bridge cams and travel zooms (where this thread started) own exactly one. And slowish at that. So it's pretty much guaranteed that, excepting bright sunny days and still lifes, that ISO may very well be cranked up 1 or 2 stops on average.

Depending on what focal range you need again from a selfish perspective I could get by with a compact with a typical "standard" zoom range like the RX1OO III with its F/1.8-2.8 aperture or the Panasonic LX10 { if it had an EVF } with its F/1.4-2.8 lens. Obviously with the 1" sensor camera as the focal range increases the penalty is in aperture my FZ1000 has an F/2.8-4 zoom

Certainly you can tripod up or activate the double secret IBISVR for still lifes and landscapes and drop to base ISO. Then the results will be very different, and will agree with DXO's scores or PhotonstoPhotos' first data points.

Now all this being said, I agree that one should shoot as close to base ISO as possible.

Obviously it depends what you mainly shoot as landscapes and macro { often with diffused flash } dominate what I shoot. I have the luxury of shooting at base ISO and picking the times/ light that suits me. Other photographers have much more challenging interests

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Jim Stirling
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” John Adams

 James Stirling's gear list:James Stirling's gear list
Sony Alpha a7R II Sony Alpha a7R III Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Sony FE 28mm F2 Sony FE 90mm F2.8 macro +4 more
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