D4 vs D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 100 & 12800

Started Mar 15, 2012 | Discussions
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etto72 Regular Member • Posts: 353
D4 vs D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 100 & 12800

Here a quick comparison between those 3 great cameras!!

All the image are from RAW files open with ACR in Default setting

At ISO 100 i post 100% crops with the D4 and mk III upsized to 36mp(Make sure you view them at the original size)
while at ISO 12800 the D800 and 5D downsized to 16mp

Its truly amazing how small the difference is at High12800!!
From what i see the sensor tech. Canon and Nikon tech is pretty closed

Interesting enough the Nikon camera show less noise with ACR NR off......
(....but that may have to do do with the not truly RAW NEF theory....
http://www.astropix.com/HTML/I_ASTROP/NIK_CAN.HTM )

even more shocking to see what a little difference you see with such big resolution numbers....

of course the 36mp power of resolution vs 16 is clear but not as big as you would think

Going from 1 to 18 mp is really a big jump but from 18 to 36....is not so impressive....

Obviously what those test don't show is how good is High iso in poor light condition!!

here is where the D4 may come though or how difficult may be to get a clean sharp pic hand holding w the D800.....
we shall see

Enjoy

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etto72 OP Regular Member • Posts: 353
Re: D4 vs D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 100 & 12800

opsss

Here we go

ISO 12800

ISO 100

 etto72's gear list:etto72's gear list
Canon EOS-1D X Canon EOS 5D Mark III Canon EOS M Sony Alpha 7R Fujifilm X-T1 +2 more
rwbaron Veteran Member • Posts: 9,371
Something is not right with your D800 ISO 100 crop.
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etto72 OP Regular Member • Posts: 353
Re: Something is not right with your D800 ISO 100 crop.

You have to download the file to view the crop at 100%

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Canon EOS-1D X Canon EOS 5D Mark III Canon EOS M Sony Alpha 7R Fujifilm X-T1 +2 more
SpartanWarrior
SpartanWarrior Senior Member • Posts: 2,888
Re: Something is not right with your D800 ISO 100 crop.

All these cameras are close in the IQ department, and I downloaded all the Raws to view and came to the same conclusion.
--
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JackM
JackM Veteran Member • Posts: 7,415
Upsizing is not fair.

Upsizing invents data and imagery that was never there, and hurts IQ. Show us the unaltered output, or all images downsized to 16mp, or both.

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Mikael Risedal
Mikael Risedal Veteran Member • Posts: 4,275
Re: Upsizing is not fair.

nothing is fair, look at time / f-stop

Daniel Clune
Daniel Clune Veteran Member • Posts: 3,451
So true

there still are a couple of unanswered questions. the shutter speeds were much higher on D800 images at same ISO setting and fstop. So either the light changed or D800 is more sensitive to light. Some have said light was less but how in the world do they know that unless they were there.

Since theses high ISO shots were done under such good light it really hard to say one camera will be better than another. The light was just to good to make a informed decision.

A good test would be to shoot under typical light that you would use for high iso. Also see if the iso settings are truly the same. If light was the same during those 5d3 and D800 pics then the iso's don't compare

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rjsanyal Junior Member • Posts: 26
D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 25,600

My comparisons of 5DIII vs D800 at high ISO, where I downsize D800 image to 5DIII size, show that it's a wash.

And honestly I would've expected better ISO performance for the 5DIII given the fewer read noise events (~22 million vs. ~36 million pixels read). But upstream read noise for both of these cameras may be low enough that it's a wash.

If you look here:

And here:

... I don't see any difference between the two cameras at ISO 25,600. Note both RAWs were opened in ACR 6.7, identical settings, then D800 was downsized to 5760px horizontal (same as 5DIII) using 'Bicubic' (not sharper, not smoother).

Please view images at 100%. They're 100% crops.

If anything, the D800 looks a little cleaner to me but, really, it's a wash.

Minus the fact that D800 has better resolution & DR (purportedly).

P.S. I find downsizing the D800 image to be the most relevant for ISO comparisons, b/c the 5DIII has the advantage of larger pixels, so the D800 should be given the advantage of 'software binning' of pixels to determine ISO performance vs. the 5DIII for the same size image.

ok55 Contributing Member • Posts: 523
Re: D4 vs D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 100 & 12800

Any RAW or JPEG comparisons at ISO 51,200?
Brgds

bgbs Veteran Member • Posts: 3,195
Re: D4 vs D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 100 & 12800

Can we put this issue to rest already? I think people have overdid and overstressed these comparisons. There is no winners and losers after all. Everybody wins.

Randplaty Contributing Member • Posts: 504
Re: So true

The light was the same. The 5D3 photos are brighter than the D800 photos:

Daniel Clune wrote:

there still are a couple of unanswered questions. the shutter speeds were much higher on D800 images at same ISO setting and fstop. So either the light changed or D800 is more sensitive to light. Some have said light was less but how in the world do they know that unless they were there.

Since theses high ISO shots were done under such good light it really hard to say one camera will be better than another. The light was just to good to make a informed decision.

A good test would be to shoot under typical light that you would use for high iso. Also see if the iso settings are truly the same. If light was the same during those 5d3 and D800 pics then the iso's don't compare

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ok55 Contributing Member • Posts: 523
Re: So true

Daniel Clune wrote:

there still are a couple of unanswered questions. the shutter speeds were much higher on D800 images at same ISO setting and fstop. So either the light changed or D800 is more sensitive to light. Some have said light was less but how in the world do they know that unless they were there.

Since theses high ISO shots were done under such good light it really hard to say one camera will be better than another. The light was just to good to make a informed decision.

A good test would be to shoot under typical light that you would use for high iso. Also see if the iso settings are truly the same. If light was the same during those 5d3 and D800 pics then the iso's don't compare

Not necessarily. Could also be other factors. Are the indicated shutter speeds and f-stops accurate for each camera?
Brgds

odedia Regular Member • Posts: 313
Re: Upsizing is not fair.

I agree. Downsampling to the Canon's 22mp is definitely more fair (taking the D4 out of the equation since it is really not in my budget :)).

I compared the ISO between the images at the down-sampled size, sadly I can't post the link due to the forum rules. Bottom line is that it looks like the nikon is the same if not better at the same size (plus some minor noise reduction in post).

MajStriker Contributing Member • Posts: 848
Re: D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 25,600

rjsanyal wrote:

... I don't see any difference between the two cameras at ISO 25,600.

Precisely, and you really won't see much difference until you are shooting in the type of lighting conditions that will require you to use ISO 25,600. A well lit studio scene is not an appropriate test for a cameras higher ISOs because an abundance of light will make the higher ISO appear to perform better than they actually do.

Don't believe me? Take a look at the 5D II ISO 12,800 example on Imaging Resource. I've never taken an ISO 12,800 shot that looked that good in my type of photography. ISO 12,800 in my opinion is unusable on the 5D II under the type of lighting that would require me to shoot at ISO 12800. It doesn't come close to matching that performance. Compare the 5D II to the D3S (reigning low light king) and you might be tempted to believe that the 5D II does better than the D3s due to its increased resolution. You'd be wrong, we all know that in real photographic conditions the D3s beats the 5D II.

Ok, now take a look at the D4 ISO 25,600 versus the D800 ISO 25,600. You could possibly say that the D800 is either equal to or better than the D4. I don't buy that and I really doubt that Nikon does either. I'm pretty dubious of the supposed High ISO equivalency of the Nikon D800 versus D4 (and/or the 5DIII) at this point.

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Teosax Senior Member • Posts: 1,465
Re: Upsizing is not fair.

no it s not

how is more fair to compare a camera with more resolution cutting the extra resolution?,???
makes no sense

since the 5d3 is lacking resolution you have to upsize the 5d to d800
otherwise if you downsize d800 you just wipe out its resolution advantage

anyway, it looks like d800 is an amazing camera, with a better iq than 5d3 and at a cheaper price

the problem is it s a nikon :(, so does not get my L lenses, and it is a much more demanding camera than 5d3

it will be much more difficult for not advanced photographers, to take full advantages of it, to get sharp pictures
handholding it, is gonna be a nightmare
and you better have a powerful computer to handle handwork d800 files

odedia wrote:

I agree. Downsampling to the Canon's 22mp is definitely more fair (taking the D4 out of the equation since it is really not in my budget :)).

I compared the ISO between the images at the down-sampled size, sadly I can't post the link due to the forum rules. Bottom line is that it looks like the nikon is the same if not better at the same size (plus some minor noise reduction in post).

rjsanyal Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: D800 vs 5D mk III: ISO 25,600

Fair enough. But keep in mind in the D4 vs D800 comparison that when you downsize the D800 image to D4 equivalent, the process of averaging pixels is similar to pixel binning, minus two factors: (1) you still had more read events with the D800, so more overall read noise injection, though that'll also be averaged but could never be as good as the D4; (2) you have lower overall quantum efficiency due to more surface area lost to inter-pixel spacing (& electronics?) on the D800.

How much these effects hurt the D800 (even when its image is downsized to D4 sizes) is anybody's guess right now.

But since you mentioned the ISO 25,600 comparison between the D4 & the D800, here it is:

D800 (top, downsized to D4 size using bicubic resampling) | D4 (bottom):

The D800 looks worse to me, especially in the shadows (that also appear to be somewhat lifted). But otherwise holds up relatively well.

Your argument of the D800 likely not performing well under challenging low-light situations may very well hold true b/c, as you can see in this comparison, it's the shadows that are particularly bad (not surprising, since these are the areas deprived of signal to begin with, & are more so deprived of signal, on a per-pixel basis, when the pixels are smaller... if the signal is low enough, and thereby relatively more susceptible to being drastically affected by read noise, perhaps even pixel binning during downsizing can't help much... I'm just theorizing here, so don't read too much into what I say).

Just out of curiosity, I then brightened the D4 image so that the black area at the bottom of the bottle with the 'Pure Brewed Lager Beer' label would match up between the D800 & D4 files (RGB=22/22/22 using 31pixel average dropper)... here it is here:

D4 is still a little better than D800... not by much though.

Hmm.

rjsanyal Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: Upsizing is not fair.

For those wondering why it makes more sense to downsize D800 images rather than upsize D4 images when doing noise/ISO comparisons, perhaps this short intro to pixel binning will help: http://learn.hamamatsu.com/articles/binning.html

But note that downsizing (software binning) is not equivalent to pixel binning on the hardware level; the latter also virtually eliminates the effects of the extra read noise from sampling more pixels in the higher resolution mode. Therefore hardware-level binning of 2x2 pixels to 1 pixel can theoretically lead to a SNR increase of a factor of 4. Software binning (resizing to 25% of original size) will lead to a much more modest increase in SNR.

Upsizing an image is attempting to generate data that's not there. Downsizing at least attempts to simulate what the lower resolution sensor may have seen, since each of the larger pixels on the D4 would've similarly averaged (what the downsizing algorithm is trying to do) the area of 2.25 D800 pixels to 1 pixel.

If you're trying to compare resolution of the two cameras, sure, then upsizing the lower resolution image makes more sense -- to essentially show 'what's the best the lower resolution capture can do in comparison to the higher resolution capture if I were interested in using all that resolution for a high-res print', for example.

Andre De Angelis Senior Member • Posts: 2,191
Downsizing can also be a disadvantage

JackM wrote:

Upsizing invents data and imagery that was never there, and hurts IQ. Show us the unaltered output, or all images downsized to 16mp, or both.

Downsizing can remove detail, especially when bicubic interpolation methods are used. This is why it benefiits noise reduction

Great Bustard Forum Pro • Posts: 33,737
So why do so many upsample before printing?

JackM wrote:

Upsizing invents data and imagery that was never there, and hurts IQ.

The fake detail added results in an interpolated upsampling results in a better file. However, if you want to disadvantage the 5D3, then, sure, upsample without interpolation.

But why do you think it is that so many upsample before printing if upsampling hurts IQ?

Show us the unaltered output, or all images downsized to 16mp, or both.

And yet you somehow feel downsampling is "fair" given that it robs the larger file of its detail advantage?

We all know the drill -- if the 5D3 were 46 MP and the D800 were 16 MP, everyone here would be calling for the D800 file to be upsampled to 46 MP. It's the nature of the "game" for the fans.

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