Panasonic please read this!

Started Oct 30, 2010 | Discussions
Roger Nordin
Roger Nordin Senior Member • Posts: 1,657
Re: It's not the megapixels! Geez, you guys.....

Gary S wrote:

The CMOS based sensor on the FZ100 was installed for SPEED! Let me repeat that, "SPEED!" This is a HYBRID camera featuring superfast shot-to-shot times and full HD video. They did not install that sensor to give it the best image quality compared to all their current offerings. It's based on SPEED for the people who want it.

We're discussing the megapixel count as well here, i.e. the pixel density. So, they increased the number of megapixels to make it faster? Yeah right In fact, it could probably have been even speedier if they had lowered the megapixel count, with less megapixels to read-out and process per shot.

The image quality you see here is what happens when you use a CMOS sensor that small , based on current technologies.

The sensor's total size is quite uninteresting itself. What IS imporant, is the pixel pitch i.e. the total size RELATEIVE to the total amount of pixels. They could have made the sensor "larger" properties by lowering the total pixel count. 14 megapixels was just going waaaaay over the top versus current capabilities of the CMOS sensors. The pixel level results of the FZ100 photos speak for themselves.

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Regards,
Roger

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cashewNut Contributing Member • Posts: 517
Re: It's not the megapixels! Geez, you guys.....

Roger Nordin wrote:

Gary S wrote:

The CMOS based sensor on the FZ100 was installed for SPEED! Let me repeat that, "SPEED!" This is a HYBRID camera featuring superfast shot-to-shot times and full HD video. They did not install that sensor to give it the best image quality compared to all their current offerings. It's based on SPEED for the people who want it.

We're discussing the megapixel count as well here, i.e. the pixel density. So, they increased the number of megapixels to make it faster? Yeah right In fact, it could probably have been even speedier if they had lowered the megapixel count, with less megapixels to read-out and process per shot.

The image quality you see here is what happens when you use a CMOS sensor that small , based on current technologies.

The sensor's total size is quite uninteresting itself. What IS imporant, is the pixel pitch i.e. the total size RELATEIVE to the total amount of pixels. They could have made the sensor "larger" properties by lowering the total pixel count. 14 megapixels was just going waaaaay over the top versus current capabilities of the CMOS sensors. The pixel level results of the FZ100 photos speak for themselves.

I thought pixel pitch is the physical distance, center to center distance between individual pixels? Not the total size. What happened with new MOs sensor developed by Panasonic and Olympus is they shorten the distance between individual pixels distance so they can put more pixels, hence they give you 14MP. So less wiring means less heat generated and as a result the faster sensor. This concept is very similar to the new CPUs compared to the old 486 CPUs. I see nothing wrong with the technology.

Midwest Forum Pro • Posts: 18,355
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

cashewNut wrote:

Thanks for your fair assessment. But you have to realize that my dog was not completely stationary when I took the shot. You can't tell the dog to sit and look at the camera. I was lucky I was able to make the shot.

As you say. Perhaps under better conditions it would have come out better than that. I do think though that there are bound to be some trade-offs on a camera with a small sensor, and that is true with any such camera - even if you wanted to include the FZ-50 in that group.

You have to learn the strengths and weaknesses, and how to take advantage of the good while working around the not-so-good. Light, from the sun and not through clouds, and plenty of it, is the best friend any small sensor camera can have.

cashewNut Contributing Member • Posts: 517
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

Midwest, I agree with you 100%. I consider myself Canada"s worse photographer. I am still learning slowly with the new camera. So can you hit me with your best shot with these two pictures I took yesterday. Those first shot was set with 0-NR, 0-sharpness and 0 saturation. Now these two pictures are set with -2NR, +2sharpness,
+1 sharpness. Thanks.

morepix
morepix Veteran Member • Posts: 9,748
Well said!

We are so helpless to make decisions on our own. Poor us! Mommy!!!
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raimaster
raimaster Contributing Member • Posts: 957
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

Hi cashewNut,

thanks for posting sample of your FZ100.

But believe me, if you have fz35 beside your FZ100, you try can to shot the same object. and the result will look better (sharper, more detail). Even you dont need to set anything on your camera. The advantage of your camera is not IQ but features and FL: 25-600mm. As long as you shot between range 4,8mm - 86mm you must remember, old FZ's can do the same even better..

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cashewNut Contributing Member • Posts: 517
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

Raimaster, I don't have to set anything? You are very funny Dr. Jones. Okay, so tell what's wrong with my pictures so i will get better. Hit me with your best shot. it is the only way to learn. Oh by the way, i meant to ask you if your town or your family are okay with the 7.7 Indonesia earthquake? I hope you are okay. Thanks.

raimaster
raimaster Contributing Member • Posts: 957
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

Hi cashewNut,

Its simple to test your picture whether good or not, whether other people like or not, you can follow my way. I shots many pictures mostly with FZ28 (can visit my gallery) than i put several pictures at DPR photo challenge. You can see the result. My best rank # no.2 other pictures # 8th, 11th# 14th, 20th#. etc.. until 216th.

If your pictures with FZ100 can reach big ten .. then you are the best FZ100 photographers. Let other people say about your pic, not me, not you not FZ100 owner or people in this forum

Anyway thanks .. you are right few days ago 7,7 earthquake hit Mentawai Islands (West Sumatra- surf spot) around 2500km from where I stay and at the same day Merapi Volcano just erupted, an we still have other 8 volcanoes in high alert .. we stay at dangerously beautifull Indonesia.

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cashewNut Contributing Member • Posts: 517
Re: DANIEL !!!! // Re: Panasonic please read this: i am happy with FZ100!

Nice to know are okay from the 7.7 earthquake. You are safe as a kitten. Thanks for the tip. I don't really mind criticisms. It is the only way to improve or give up if there is no hope. I can always start gardening. Best regards.

Detail Man
Detail Man Forum Pro • Posts: 17,225
Panasonic: Use CCDs with Pixel-Pitch => 2.0 Microns - Part 1

Roger Nordin wrote:
We're discussing the megapixel count as well here, i.e. the pixel density.

Panasonic should know that efforts to the reduce the pixel-pitch below 2.0 Microns (equal to 25 Mpixels/cm2) have not resulted in the release of camera systems that are up to previous efforts .

Putting 6.0 Mpixels on a 1/2.5" sized image-sensor yielded a pixel-pitch of 2.0 Microns. My original Lumix (the DMC-LZ5, 6 MP, 6X Zoom) is one example. It doesn't detail-smear, and it doesn't over-sharpen. And it runs forever on two rechargeable AA sized batteries !

The 8.0 Mpixel DMC-FZ30 had an approximately 2.2 Micron pixel-pitch, and remains a valued product in theory and in practice in the hands of many users. Despite the (these days quite manageable with NR tools) sensor-noise, and despite it's 8 Mpixels, the FZ30 creates (in my view) the best in-camera JPG that a Lumix (up to medium sensor-size) camera produces. Accurate and clear details compared to all of the later Venus Engine "JPG recipes". Visibly free from excessive NR detail-smearing and over-sharpening artifacts.

The 10.0 Mpixel DMC-FZ50 had an approximately 2.0 Micron pixel-pitch, and (in addition to the DMC-FZ30) also remains a valued product in theory and in practice in the hands of many users.

The 10.0 Mpixel DMC-LX3 (and the DMC-LX5) have an approximately 2.0 Micron pixel-pitch, and are a valued product in theory and in practice in the hands of many users - with the LX5 (I think) still needing more evaluation of the performance specifications and quality control of the camera's optical lens-system as recorded in "raw" (RW2) image-files.

The Canon G10 featured a 14 Mpixel CCD sensor. While it was understood to have a lower Signal/Noise than the LX3, it also seems to have a dedicated following of users who value it's high spatial-frequency (detail) resolution capabilities. Supported by DxO Optics Pro as well as Lightroom, very good "raw" processing options exist for (in post-processing) deal with the sensor-noise.

The trade-offs (in terms of SNR and spatial-frequency resolution) between the LX3 and the G10 are well presented by the eminent EJ Martin:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1033&message=29866728

The DIWA tests (Dynamic-Range, Signal/Noise, and the Tonal-Range, using DxOMark's test equipment) of the DMC-FZ100 and the DMC-LX3 show them to pretty closely track each other in these specifications at ISO Sensitivities up to and including ISO=400:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1033&message=36682542

Detail Man
Detail Man Forum Pro • Posts: 17,225
Panasonic: Use CCDs with Pixel-Pitch => 2.0 Microns - Part 2

Thus, there is more going on (than DR, S/N, and TR specifications) that (inmy view) explains some of the differences that (my) eyes see between MOS and CCD image-sensor outputs (in example the LX3 as compared to the FZ100).

MOS image-sensors (in general) appear to handle highlights better than CCD - (literally) up to a point. However, the upper-limit of the transfer-function of MOS photo-sites (due to the on-board MOS transistor buffer amplifiers) has a "hard-clipping" highlight limit. This great until "clipping" is reached - but all highlight detail is squashed past that "hard-clipping" point of sensor-response to incoming light levels.

CCD image-sensors (on the other hand), have more of a "soft-clipping" upper highlight limit. To avoid all losses of highlight-detail in the upper highlights, I have to restrict the "bulk" of the Live Histogram data to 0.5 "stops" below maximum (which is around 1.0 "stops" below the "raw" (RW2) "clipping" of the LX3). If I push the exposure past that, there appears to be a gradually increasing amount of loss of highlight-detail that can (in some situations) be utilized, but can (also) really mess up fine-detail (in subject-matter such as foliage, that the human eye has definite expectations as to the appearance of).

A good "audio analogy" is to picture MOS sensors as being like a "linear power amplifier" that reproduces high-level signals with low distortion until a very abrupt maximum audio power level is reached. On the other hand, CCD sensors are more like a "tube power amplifier" that have a "soft-clipping" characteristic when reproducing high-level audio signals. Some listeners find a certain "sweetness" and "warmth" in the more gradual ("soft") effects of the "tube amplifier". The down-side is the sometimes ragged effects of the distortion produced by "soft-clipping".

MOS looks accurate and clean at higher light levels (but does not tolerate exceeding the highlight tone-level limits gracefully). There is a "starkness" to MOS, and a sense that it excels in the highlights, but falls shorter in the shadows.

CCD produces more highlight-distortion as the highlight-levels reach a level of around one "stop" below absolute maximum. There is a "warmth" to CCD, and a sense that it excels more in the shadows, falling shorter in retaining highlight-details.

These differences described above between the two sensor technologies extend to the chroma, as well as the luminance information. MOS seems stark and thin in color-rendering. CCD seems a bit warmer and richer.

As is the case in audio amplifiers, the solid-state power amplifier may well have lower distortion at high levels than the vacuum-tube power amplifier, but it is the ability of the tube-amplifier to make the low-levels sound good, and the higher-levels sound sweeter that causes some listeners to prefer tube over solid-state.

Small MOS sensors are cheaper to produce, and appear to be superior for video. MOS also appears to rule when the Mpixel count on higher-quality large-sized image-sensors is concerned. But CCD (for small and more "serious" compacts) seems (to me, personally) like the preferred technology. There are no subjective perceptual "absolute truths" where it comes to such preferences (thus, there really is no technical argument to be had).

After all, the DR, SNR, and TR specifications (up to and including ISO=400) of the LX3 and the FZ100 are about the same ... Yet the general look/feel of the images that the LX3 and the FZ100 produce are not the same..

Detail Man
Detail Man Forum Pro • Posts: 17,225
Panasonic: Use CCDs with Pixel-Pitch => 2.0 Microns - Part 3

So, more power to those who prefer either one or the other ! There is no need (and absolutely no point) in imagining that an "objective debate" can really exist regarding inherently subjective human visual perceptive preferences and tastes.

"Better" is not the camera that you have purchased - better is the camera that your eyes prefer !!

To form "tribal clans" based on camera model purchase/preference is a fool's errand ! We are more than our machines. They are just cold, dead tools with relative advantages and disadvantages.

The magnitude of camera-sales has less and less to do with technical performance, and more and more to do with promising automatic "robot-brain" bells and whistles that promise to transform a total idiot into Ansel Adams with the push of a button. This "in-camera JPG recipe" game promises a mirage and wet-dream of photographic brilliance without actual attention and effort (other than getting ot your pocket-book and parting with some "disposable income").

The percentage niche of compact-camera users who want controls, know how to use such controls, and have the time/energy to actually do so is diminishing. The ("raw" recording) "serious compacts" (with around 10 Mpixels on a roughly 1/1.7" image-sensor size) are a species endangered by the march of over-aggressive NR and over-sharpening being utilized in order to attempt to push maximum usable ISO limits.

Thus, the "mega-pixel wars" are held in check, but the "highest-ISO-wars" are raging still. In many respects, both "wars" lead to the same NR/Sharpening dilemmas ... This forces the users to record in "raw" image-file format, and to post-process "raw" images. I see little option to that practice. But the percentage of camera customers who so heavily post-process are clearly in the minority (a mere 12.5%, one out of eight, of the DPReview site visitors in the recently conducted DPR "poll").

Roger Nordin wrote:

So, they increased the number of megapixels to make it faster? Yeah right In fact, it could probably have been even speedier if they had lowered the megapixel count, with less megapixels to read-out and process per shot.

The "faster" is all about gimmicky digi-cam video (fine if that is your priority), where the MOS sensors and their system-architecture do seem to have advantages over CCD image-sensors. Your point about the matter of the in-camera ("raw" and JPG) processing times for a lower Mpixel count is valid, and is a contributing factor. It does appear (at 11 fps burst rates that the "still" photographic delay times are not wanting for speed, however ...

The sensor's total size is quite uninteresting itself.

Except for the fact that larger image-sensor sizes require larger base (actual) focal-lengths, which degrades the maximum Depth of Field that can be achieved by the camera design by the square of the relative increase in the height of the active-area of the image-sensor ...

What IS important, is the pixel pitch i.e. the total size RELATIVE to the total amount of pixels. They could have made the sensor "larger" properties by lowering the total pixel count. 14 megapixels was just going waaaaay over the top versus current capabilities of the CMOS sensors. The pixel level results of the FZ100 photos speak for themselves.

Yes, we are the (diminishing in percentage) "choir" that we preach to ...

Whether the Mucky-Mucks in the Land of Matsushita (Panasonic) have ears for such talk in the profit-driven stampede of their battle to bite into Nikon and Canon's market-share is (likely) quite another story ...

Dark days are likely ahead if Lumix continues to "burn the bridge-cameras" existing between small, cheap compacts and Micro 4/3 model (which pale in their ability to deliver deep DOF with any of the kit lenses).

Archive your "pre-chipped" gems (such as the FZ30, FZ50, LX3), and remember to keep a battery-pack in them when not in use (because otherwise the internal Lithium button-battery will be depleted before it's 10-yr shelf-life as a result of having to power the small quiescent-current to run the on-board clock, etc.).

antoineb Veteran Member • Posts: 6,653
It's the CMOS issue: Canon had made the same mistake

A couple years ago, Canon also tried a superzoom with a CMOS chip. The image quality got very poor reviews.

This time around Panny is trying it - and getting the same poor reviews for what indeed looks like pretty poor image quality. Sure a big zoom lens is good, and good video is good, but if the IQ is going to be that low then an iPhone will cover 90% to 95% of the same ground, while being much smaller, and able to do others things, too,.

As a Panasonic superzoom user looking at the new model each year, this is another frustrating "upgrade". Why buy a bigger, heavier camera, whose IQ is going to be lower? Just for the video? Hmmm. Oh sure I could get an FZ-45, but that thing still has a 230'000 pixels display (something from 3 years ago at least), the IQ is the same as it was 3 years ago, and they've crippled the menu system by removing the joystick.

Maybe, just maybe, Panasonic have decided that the way to go is either compact, or EVIL cameras, and thus are making sure that their superzooms don't step on anyone's toes. But coming up with two models sure seems like overkill then.

Weird.

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PanAAA Regular Member • Posts: 118
Re: Panasonic please read this!

Yesterday afternoon, I have finally pinned a store that has a FZ35 in stock (after calling many stores with no luck). Happily, I went there this morning, but it was sold! No more FZ35. Oddly, this store now sells FZ100 at S$685 (just last week was S$749). I am not jumping into FZ100 for the reason that many forum photos showed lower IQ than FZ35, though I love the features of FZ100. I am still waiting to upgrade from my FX01 for the many desirable features of FZ35 and FZ100. The upgrade is more urgent now that the FX01 sprouted a problem just one week ago. After half shutter pre-focus and framing, at the moment just before full shutter stroke, the focus green frame in the display turns white. Its re-focus and takes the shot with the result that my subject on the side of framing is now not sharp. Shutter switch problem I guess.

ultimitsu
ultimitsu Veteran Member • Posts: 6,650
Re: Panasonic please read this!

The new rage now is more than 10 FPS full resolution drive, sony started it and everyone is expected to follow. because 10 FPS drive sounds really cool in both marketing and sales department, much better than "clean iso 800" or 1 extra stop Dr than previous generation"

but I have confidence that LX3 had started a new segment that is unlikely to change or die out, which is the 10mp premium sector. G11 and 12 followed LX3's steps and staying back at 10mp, along with S90 and s95, samsumg has one, and nikon is finally here too.

so yeah, i think you can quite safely push your LX3 to the max and not to worry about them turning into 20mp cmos in a few years.

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rinkos Senior Member • Posts: 2,227
Re: Panasonic please read this!

ultimitsu wrote:

The new rage now is more than 10 FPS full resolution drive, sony started it and everyone is expected to follow. because 10 FPS drive sounds really cool in both marketing and sales department, much better than "clean iso 800" or 1 extra stop Dr than previous generation"

sony has 10fps and good quality ...as one going to buy the a55 probably due the fact i fed up with pana approach ( has fz28 ,waited for the fz100 , little sensor bahh ) .

A55 will do a noiseless 3200iso...so plz..give credit where its due..not to mention her autohdr modes HHT and a lot more that lets u shoot with no tripod and get superb results..

oh and her 10fps..it keeps AF through it all..and not just fixed according to the first shot.

now about the pana:

fz100 shots with the right settings are better than the fz28..i had to admit that when i saw some fz100 macro shots ( unaided by raynox !!) .

but people here do the comparable thing to compare trucks made 30 years appart and only because they are the same size they are the same *

SAME SENSOR SIZE DOES NOT MEAN THE SAME SENSOR

tech evolved and the sensor is rebuilt...also the processors get much better by factorial jumps each 18months so its a whole new world.

now it is possible that the fz100 is better ...but it would be a whole lot better with a lx5 sensor ..or g12 sensor....

when the fz's could do 1600iso good shots...than i will say good job i am buying your cam.
till than i was left with no alternative buy go higher..

the 4/3 is a doomed horse...( should have stick 4/3 sensor in the fz100 instead of trying to cashing out on our backs ) .

so that leaves only DSLR's...and the entry category got a whole lot cheaper and better this past months.

i am reluctent to buy and carry lens buy i won't accept that amount of low light noise anymore.

if you are not a low light shooter and don't care about using the flash the fz100 is your perfect match ...but lx5 is a sad joke
add a 100$ and get a 6 times better sensor camera called nex!!!

clik40fred Regular Member • Posts: 128
Re: Panasonic please read this!
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Lx5 .... a joke,?......Have you seen Dez's photo's of NYC,

and by the way,FZ38 are getting sold out at a lot of dealers,its funny how they only restock FZ45.....100,I think i will go for the 38,if i can find one at the right price,
the world's in your camera.

adhemar Regular Member • Posts: 204
Re: here comes the translation

I finally bit the bullet and read one of DetailMan's treatises to the end. Here is what he said, I think:

  • In the first part we learn that several small sensor cameras have a pixel-pitch of 2.0 or 2.2 Microns. Follows several comments on various camera totally unrelated to the original post. The conclusion is that the LX3 and FZ00 offer similar performance up to 400 iso.

  • In part 2 we are told that MOS sensor handle highlights better (gentler roll-off), while CCD handles shadows better. The conclusion is that pictures from the LX3 and FZ100 look different.

  • Part 3 covers lots of ground : camera preferences are subjective, over-aggressive NR and over-sharpening is not good, 12.5% is one out of eight (and that percentage has some meaning based on some undisclosed poll), the convergence between still camera and video is a gimmick, good cameras have lots of DOF. The conclusion is that you should keep you old cameras.

I apologize but I still do not have any idea what those 3 lengthy posts were about.

PS: DPReview's life time supply of parenthesis is running low. Please refrain from using them for a while.

swnw Senior Member • Posts: 1,529
Re: Panasonic please read this!

Panasonic believes that marketing means everything and user opinions nothing so I'm a pessimist.
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rinkos Senior Member • Posts: 2,227
Re: Panasonic please read this!

clik40fred wrote:

well maybe i was to harsh ..its not a sad joke but the choice to get one is becuase :
1.the s95 is far better..see reviews

2.only a 100$ less than the nex3 who has more reach lenses ability and a lot more abilities...oh ..almost forgot 1/1.6 sensor vs 3.7 sensor...u do the math.
the nex can do iso 3200 clean shot at low light..the lx5 is far from it...

sure for small prints it can do ..but not on a big one ..and i mean even a4 size.

3.it is better than the fz100 ofcourse at IQ alone and will get good iso800 shots even at low light but low light 1600 are still to noisy to handle..thus ruling it out...and since i can fix and fixed iso 800 shots of the fz100 i will prefer the fz100 rather than the lx5.

iso1600 at low light is unmanagble at both cams so i don't really care if its 2.0 or 2.8...

4.while not saying fz100 and lx5 can't take great shots and they sure can ..and the french guy 78 something showed that with the right setting u can take excellent fz100 shots..they both are well crappy at low light...nothing to do about it ..the sensor is too little...

5.if you don't shoot at low light..or don't mind carry a tripod where u go so its the choice for you ...if not..u need to step up since pana insist on sticking little ars sensors.

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