Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

Started Jan 2, 2012 | Discussions
Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

Here are two 100% crops of ISO 1600 shots taken of the same scene with the S100 and GF2. Processed from raw with Raw Therapee (DCraw 9.12), no noise reduction or sharpening applied.

It might be time to sell the GF2.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
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xxbluejay21 Regular Member • Posts: 356
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

wow that's exciting. Can't wait for Canon to start making DIGIC 5 DSLRs.

OP Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

xxbluejay21 wrote:

wow that's exciting. Can't wait for Canon to start making DIGIC 5 DSLRs.

Presumably DIGIC isn't even involved if the raw sensor data are truly "raw."

Also do note that for a few minutes I had an image that was two GF2 crops up there. Not sure how I managed to goof that up. The S100 image is better IMHO. I decided to do the test when I noticed that the ISO 1600 profiles I'd designed in Raw Therapee for the GF2 and S100 were virtually identical. Turns out that's because so are the images!

Steen Bay Veteran Member • Posts: 7,418
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

Jaymzz wrote:

Here are two 100% crops of ISO 1600 shots taken of the same scene with the S100 and GF2. Processed from raw with Raw Therapee (DCraw 9.12), no noise reduction or sharpening applied.

It might be time to sell the GF2.

Interesting, thanks for posting. Maybe it seems a bit strange that the S100 can match the high ISO performance of a camera with an app. 5.5x larger sensor, but the S100 sensor has higher QE and a pretty low read noise that's decreasing at higher ISOs, and as a result of that the S100 actually has higher (engineering) DR at iso1600 than the 12mp mFT/FT cameras.

http://www.sensorgen.info/ (click on a camera to see more data)

OP Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
DxOMark

Interesting, thanks for posting. Maybe it seems a bit strange that the S100 can match the high ISO performance of a camera with an app. 5.5x larger sensor, but the S100 sensor has higher QE and a pretty low read noise that's decreasing at higher ISOs, and as a result of that the S100 actually has higher (engineering) DR at iso1600 than the 12mp mFT/FT cameras.

http://www.sensorgen.info/ (click on a camera to see more data)

Thanks! I clicked through that site to DxOMark and started comparing. The SNR graph is what I'd expect to see comparing the S100 and GF2, but ISO 1600 for the S100 was measured at 1339 but the GF2 was measured at 2290. When you look at both 1600 "dots" they are at nearly parallel at 20.4dB for the S100 and 21.8dB for the GF2, compared to something like 18.5dB for the S100 and 24dB for the GF2. I don't know if there is a practical way to test the two against each other at roughly the same ISO with any precision, though eyeballing it maybe 1250 on the GF2 is close to the S100.

So far I still conclude that the performance being so close makes one of these cameras redundant, and I already have a GH2.

And also quite interesting, at least to me.... how my six year old 5D till holds up against all of them!

PaulRivers Veteran Member • Posts: 7,420
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

hey, thanks for posting.

Would love to see a few more comparison pics!

Also, would be great if you could post the full size versions to dpreview here of each...lol, would really love to be able to tell the "omg get an older m43rds cameraz!!!" crowd to shove it. (Though I would be the latest m43rds Panasonic sensors are better)

Steen Bay Veteran Member • Posts: 7,418
Re: DxOMark

Jaymzz wrote:

Interesting, thanks for posting. Maybe it seems a bit strange that the S100 can match the high ISO performance of a camera with an app. 5.5x larger sensor, but the S100 sensor has higher QE and a pretty low read noise that's decreasing at higher ISOs, and as a result of that the S100 actually has higher (engineering) DR at iso1600 than the 12mp mFT/FT cameras.

http://www.sensorgen.info/ (click on a camera to see more data)

Thanks! I clicked through that site to DxOMark and started comparing. The SNR graph is what I'd expect to see comparing the S100 and GF2, but ISO 1600 for the S100 was measured at 1339 but the GF2 was measured at 2290. When you look at both 1600 "dots" they are at nearly parallel at 20.4dB for the S100 and 21.8dB for the GF2, compared to something like 18.5dB for the S100 and 24dB for the GF2. I don't know if there is a practical way to test the two against each other at roughly the same ISO with any precision, though eyeballing it maybe 1250 on the GF2 is close to the S100.

It's a bit complicated.. DxO's "SNR 18%" graph shows SNR for the shot/photon noise dominated midtones, and there the GF2 (with a 5.5x larger sensor) wins, but the Dynamic Range graph indicates that the S100 catches up deeper down in the read noise dominated shadows.

So far I still conclude that the performance being so close makes one of these cameras redundant, and I already have a GH2.

And also quite interesting, at least to me.... how my six year old 5D till holds up against all of them!

Len_Gee
Len_Gee Veteran Member • Posts: 9,880
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

Interesting.

So are you showing that the larger size of GF2 sensor makes for a more noise image than from the S100?

Indeed might be time to sell your GF2. No point having a MFT if it can't shake a stick to the mighty S100.

Thanks for posting.

Jaymzz wrote:

Here are two 100% crops of ISO 1600 shots taken of the same scene with the S100 and GF2. Processed from raw with Raw Therapee (DCraw 9.12), no noise reduction or sharpening applied.

It might be time to sell the GF2.

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OP Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
Thanks

It's a bit complicated.. DxO's "SNR 18%" graph shows SNR for the shot/photon noise dominated midtones, and there the GF2 (with a 5.5x larger sensor) wins, but the Dynamic Range graph indicates that the S100 catches up deeper down in the read noise dominated shadows.

That makes a lot of sense. Does not bode well for the resale value of older m4/3 cameras.

OP Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

So are you showing that the larger size of GF2 sensor makes for a more noise image than from the S100?

That was my impression. At best it's a tie.

Indeed might be time to sell your GF2. No point having a MFT if it can't shake a stick to the mighty S100.

The only reason I can think of is interchangeable lenses. For my purposes, you are correct.

hiso New Member • Posts: 13
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

I don't have GF2. I just bought one S100V. I think as a P&S Camera, S100v is doing a good job in ISO1600. The performance is simply better than my old D80. If you shoot in RAW and reduce the noise by DPP, it will be even better.

jdl1986 Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

I did a similar less technical test of the S100 and the GX1 and the GX1 looked noisier and lacked in detail at the same ISO levels.

I've been really impressed by my S100 since selling my Pana LX5.

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deleted12 Regular Member • Posts: 173
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

How would you compare your S100 to your LX 5? I am debating purchasing one of the two cameras soon. I shoot mostly city scenes, landscapes, and occasionally flowers and portraits, with little shooting being indoors.

Thanks,

Den

DirkL Regular Member • Posts: 386
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

The sensor in the GF2 is several years old, the G3, GX1, GH2 (and GH1)
are much better perforners, though I think even these are soon been
outperformed by the competition.

Nevertheless, I would like to know the exposure of the shots.
The S100 has quite a fast lens, and if the exposure time of the
GF2 is considerably larger, there would be an additional reason for
the noise.

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PC Wheeler
PC Wheeler Forum Pro • Posts: 17,902
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

I think this is more a negative comment about the GF2 than anything; though my S100 sure is cleaner than my old S90 at ISO 1600, my GH2 m4/3 camera is far cleaner.
--
Phil

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ANAYV Forum Pro • Posts: 19,944
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

PC Wheeler wrote:

.... though my S100 sure is cleaner than my old S90 at ISO 1600, my GH2 m4/3 camera is far cleaner.

And more impressively (to me) .... the GH2 holds the details, at high iso settings.

This shot still has some detail, at a crazy ISO 10,000 ! Even has some color left, lol.

I'm still debating on getting the S100. I've had the S30/50/60/70/80 , and enjoyed them.

Been using a LX3 , til recently ....and wondering if the S100 can do just as good at the 24mm end (sharpness)

ANAYV

jdl1986 Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Canon S100 vs. Panasonic DMC-GF2 at ISO 1600

Hi,

So far from what I can tell the s100 is sharper and provides better detail than the lx did, the accuracy of the colour and WB seems so much better as well.

The lx does seem to focus faster but this does not affect my shooting and from the type of shots you want to take I dont think it would affect you either.

I mainly wanted a smaller camera and the longer reach was a bonus, yes it is slow at the top end f5.9 at 120mm but I don't find this too much of an issue even at lower shutter speeds in low light, the Inteligent Image Stabilizer compensates very well.

There are improvements all round for my usage : D

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OP Jaymzz Senior Member • Posts: 1,654
exposure

DirkL wrote:

The sensor in the GF2 is several years old, the G3, GX1, GH2 (and GH1)
are much better perforners, though I think even these are soon been
outperformed by the competition.

Nevertheless, I would like to know the exposure of the shots.
The S100 has quite a fast lens, and if the exposure time of the
GF2 is considerably larger, there would be an additional reason for
the noise.

S100 : f2.0 1/15th EV+2/3 tungsten white balance

GF2 : f2.5 1/20th EV+2/3 indoor white balance (14mm pancake)

It's not scientific I realize, but this is how I usually set up both cameras to shoot indoors with no flash, which was what I was interested in comparing at the time. I consider them to be close, though the ISO sensitivity issue is obvious to me now since the histograms were almost identical yet the GF2 shot a slower lens at a higher shutter speed.

Anyway, hope that helps.

DirkL Regular Member • Posts: 386
Re: exposure

Most of us are unable to make a scientific comparision.
One can try a fair one, and so have you.
And yes, it supports your decision wrt the GF2.

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Kopend05 Contributing Member • Posts: 868
GF2

Not at all surprised, i had a GF2 a while back and the RAW samples put into lightroom were bettered my the G12 i had at the time.

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