No more dots!

Started Jan 8, 2009 | Discussions
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RicksAstro
RicksAstro Veteran Member • Posts: 3,570
No more dots!

Just upgraded the firmware and ran a series of tests (similar to previous ones with Christmas tree lights). I was easily able to duplicate the issue using extreme underexposure around the lights, and with the new firmware, I'm happy to report that I cannot find even a single black dot.

I ran the raw files through DCRAW using document mode (not demosaiced) and examined the area around the lights to look for any anomalies (pixels below the black threshold) in my astronomy image processing software (MaximDL) which shows pixel statistics for selected areas. There were none to be found, whereas in previous tests, there were hundreds.

I also looked for signs of obvious "patching" of black areas, possibly where color data would have been wiped out on the right side or some kind of smearing. I could find none. The bayer mosaic looked symmetrical around the light.

Of course, the JPGs also show no black dots either.

I've taken about 10 pics with a wide swing of conditions. I'll try some more this evening, but I'm confident this already small issue is resolved. If I find otherwise, I'll post here.

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Jaimito Regular Member • Posts: 159
Re: No more dots!

nice to hear. sounds like you had quite a few shots with dots before.

Care to post sample before and after pics here? Similar situations will do, doesnt have to identical.

desmo101
desmo101 Contributing Member • Posts: 758
Re: No more dots!

awesome
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guitarist
guitarist Senior Member • Posts: 2,725
Re: No more dots!

good news
and that was very kind of you to post these results right away...

I have not loaded the FW yet..
but I could NOT find dots...

but maybe didn't have te same conditions..

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curious about any banding improvements RAW AND sRAW1 (was that the one?)

THANKS again for the thoughtful post for a lot of folks

TOM

Rowan Castle Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: No more dots!

That is really good to hear! Thanks for letting us know.

I'm not as up to speed on some of the technical stuff regarding RAW, so I wondered if you could tell me if your post means that in your opinion there is no other degradation to the image following the fix? i.e. was it a true software fix or a software 'patch' to mask a hardware issue?

I was just concerned and surprised to see Canons choice of words about 'improving and mitigating' the black dot problem? Thanks!
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submagination Senior Member • Posts: 1,078
Re: No more dots!

Rowan Castle wrote:

I was just concerned and surprised to see Canons choice of words
about 'improving and mitigating' the black dot problem? Thanks!

I assume that it's one of those things where they're aware of some really esoteric edge cases where this might pop up and just wanted to CYA.

If they said it was 100% resolved and someone somewhere got some black dots then everyone would flip the F out. This way, if it does pop up in an exceptionally rare circumstance, it's not the end of the world - especially if 99.9% of people see immediate improvements.
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Karma Traveler Regular Member • Posts: 494
Re: No more dots!

RicksAstro wrote:

I ran the raw files through DCRAW using document mode (not
demosaiced) and examined the area around the lights to look for any
anomalies (pixels below the black threshold) in my astronomy image
processing software (MaximDL) which shows pixel statistics for
selected areas. There were none to be found, whereas in previous
tests, there were hundreds.

I also looked for signs of obvious "patching" of black areas,
possibly where color data would have been wiped out on the right side
or some kind of smearing. I could find none.

Your initial findings sound very encouraging! I sure hope it holds up to more exhaustive tests.

DaveWC Contributing Member • Posts: 612
Re: No more dots!

If you've got ACR or LR could you try bringing some RAW files in & see how they look?

RicksAstro
RicksAstro OP Veteran Member • Posts: 3,570
Example...

Here's an example with the new firmware:
1/25s
f8
ISO3200
15mm fisheye (wicked sharp with little flare at the center)
RAW Processed in DCRAW undemosaiced (dcraw.exe -v -D -4 -T)

Stretched to show the issue in CS3 (black point set just above the lowest points)
upsized 200%

Took the xmas tree down, so I had to dig out the lights

Here's one from 12/8 I took...ISO3200, similar conditions, 24mm at f8 (but from farther away), similar processing. Black dots obvious.

I took a series tonight with the 15mm and the 24-105, closer and farther and through about 6 stops of range and I did not find a single issue with a black dot.

I know this is pixel peeping to the extreme, but I am an avid astrophotographer, and I stretch the heck out of images so I was a little concerned about it, although with the PS actions, the effects were quite minimal.

I've convinced myself that it's fixed.

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Taikonaut Senior Member • Posts: 2,513
Re: Example...

Do you know it is unlucky to put decorations back up immediately after taken it down?

cyrano Contributing Member • Posts: 896
Re: Example...

Thanks for the careful work!

Do you know if this firmware change could break Photoshop or Lightroom's ability to handle the RAW files?

guitarist
guitarist Senior Member • Posts: 2,725
Re: Example...

this is why I am waiting... since there is no way to 'go back' while waiting for LR to update....

I dont know the answer... but know that is a GOOD QUESTION

TOM

RicksAstro
RicksAstro OP Veteran Member • Posts: 3,570
Re: Example...

cyrano wrote:

Thanks for the careful work!

Do you know if this firmware change could break Photoshop or
Lightroom's ability to handle the RAW files?

I ran it through both unupdated DCRAW and through Adobe's DNG converter then ACR in CS3 and all looked fine. I don't think they changed the RAW format (at least not full raw).

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RedFox88 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,114
what about through ACR?

Their statement about updating DPP too makes me think their "fix" is just a clever auto clone/heal with DPP and not a real fix of the RAW data fille.

What happens when you process a 5D2 shot with the new firmware with ACR?

RicksAstro
RicksAstro OP Veteran Member • Posts: 3,570
Re: No more dots!

DaveWC wrote:

If you've got ACR or LR could you try bringing some RAW files in &
see how they look?

Don't have LR and have CS3 only, but I did run it through the DNG converter and then ACR and the files looked fine, much as they did before.

They don't seem to have changed the format of full raw at least.

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RicksAstro
RicksAstro OP Veteran Member • Posts: 3,570
Re: what about through ACR?

Actually, my entire OP was talking about RAW files basically unprocessed (in DCRAW), not even demosaiced!

Yours was my original fear as well (and I posted earlier today here), but I'm happy to report the issue is fixed in the raw data.

In the firmware docs, Canon gives the reason for the DPP update :

"If the existing software applications are used to display sRAW1 and sRAW2 images that were captured by a camera with Firmware Version 1.0.7, dark, low-contrast areas in the images may appear slightly magenta. If the updated software applications are used to display sRAW1 and sRAW2 images, the color of the images will appear normal, regardless of the camera firmware version."

So it looks like that need is unrelated to the black dot fix.

Rick

RedFox88 wrote:

Their statement about updating DPP too makes me think their "fix" is
just a clever auto clone/heal with DPP and not a real fix of the RAW
data fille.

What happens when you process a 5D2 shot with the new firmware with ACR?

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FashionBoy Regular Member • Posts: 100
Re: what about through ACR?

Thank you so much for your tests, Rick!

shaktipalooza Senior Member • Posts: 1,652
this could be a disaster

people running out of things to complain about.

they may be forced to go take some pictures.

Rowan Castle Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: what about through ACR?

Yes, thanks again! Bravo! I would like to upgrade to this camera but the black dots were putting me off.

Duane DeSieno Regular Member • Posts: 483
Re: this could be a disaster

DARN!!! Now I can only get them by over-sharpening!

Duane

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