70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

Started Jan 21, 2014 | Discussions
OP Super486 New Member • Posts: 13
Re: Not that impressive.
1

Considering the fact that the pictures were shot at 100ISO, I'm not impressed.  Many cameras on the market can do better than that.  I just can't explain myself the luminance variations on these pictures.  There is lots of red noise one some pictures as well.  Was the temperature very high when you shot these pictures?  Looks like the sensor produces an abnormally high amount of read-out/dark noise to my eye.  High temperature or the excessive use of live view would explain that.  Can you confirm?

Regards

Rene

Don't know shooting circumstances, original raws are from two reviews, I just downloaded and tested them. Only adjust was exposure +

Honestly, I'm impressed by the results. I can't see any disturbing noise, but fine grain and preserved detail. Again, are Sony Exmors the kings of clean low iso DR? Yes! But, Canon has done a great job here

OP Super486 New Member • Posts: 13
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
1

Super486 wrote:

I'm considering 70D as a sports, birding and video camera. I know D7100 sensor gets noticeably better ratings on DxoMark, especially in DR. This is repeated on the forums: Canon has poor DR. I don't know about older models, but I was curious to test by myself if the new 70D actually is lacking DR, so downloaded some raw samples with deep shadows, from two reviews I found on the net, and played with them in Raw Therapee. I tried to push them hard, challenging the supossedly lacking DR of the 70D.

Well, the actual results surprised me. I was expecting a ugly mess of blotchy noise, banding, pattern noise, but couldn't see it at all. Sure, the D7100 must be cleaner, and there is some color noise in the shadows, but it cleans up very well and is fine grained. Not a problem at all, at least to me.
What do you think folks? This is great for such a DR-limited sensor, isn't it?

You set up your own straw man and knocked the stuffing out of it, so well done. I know dpreview is extremely laissez faire in letting users set up accounts, but I can't see that setting one up for this purpose was worth it. It's clear you already know the ins and outs of posting photos on this site, but to what purpose? People don't say the image quality of the 70D is poor, they just say that the dynamic range of modern Nikons is really remarkable. I don't know that anybody expected banding at low ISO.
The only interesting information has come from TTMartin, that suggests it may pay to use DPP for raw conversion.

I'm a long time lurker of forums, and I'm interested on the 70D. However, I've read a number of times Canon has great high iso but poor DR at low iso with banding, pattern noise. This is a known mantra in the forums, isn't it? Some even say 70D has no improvements in DR. I did some tests and the results surprised me, so I thought it would be interesting to share them. Sorry if I disturbed anyone

TTMartin
TTMartin Veteran Member • Posts: 7,304
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

JasonED wrote:

d90 uses sony imx038

d300 uses sony imx021

This has been well documented.

Thank you for the correction.

Do the D90 and D300s use the same sensor?

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rwbaron Forum Pro • Posts: 14,324
Re: Correction - Lifting shadows with D7000
3

Tourlou wrote:

Here's a shot taken through a window, facing the sun, with the camera's exposure compensation set to -5ev.

And here is the same photo automatically equalized in lightroom, no noise reduction applied.

Although there's a fair amount of chroma noise, it amazes me every tiime I open these files.

Why would you purposely mislead people with your post?

Bob

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jvkelley Contributing Member • Posts: 849
Re: Noise reduction before raw file is written??????????????????

You can find some of this information on DXO's website.  They are able to detect if raw files are "cooked."  I'm not sure what they do with this information.

http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Half-cooked-RAW

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lost_in_utah Regular Member • Posts: 458
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
1

Despite what the evidence and data says, you still disagree? The DR may be great to you, but relative to other cameras, it's not that great. The evidence tells a different story and believing in someone contrary to the evidence only shows your delusions.

lost_in_utah Regular Member • Posts: 458
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

So it's a conspiracy against Canon in favor of Nikon?

David Hull
David Hull Veteran Member • Posts: 6,474
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
1

Cane wrote:

Dxo only matters if your camera scores well.

Once Galleries begin accepting test charts instead of photos, it'll matter a lot.

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David Hull
David Hull Veteran Member • Posts: 6,474
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

Sid911 wrote:

Apologies for noobie question, do all the Canon APS-C sensors display the same dynamic range? What I am really trying to find out is, from just the DR perspective, would Canon 70D be similar to say, a T4i or T3i?

The real issue is not the dynamic range as DxO reports it, it is the patterned nature of the noise in some (most) Canon implementations.  The 70D seems to be the best camera they have made to date in this regard -- it has more noise than the Nikon/Sony implementations but it is not nearly as patterned as some other Canon implementations.

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David Hull
David Hull Veteran Member • Posts: 6,474
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

TTMartin wrote:

Sid911 wrote:

Apologies for noobie question, do all the Canon APS-C sensors display the same dynamic range? What I am really trying to find out is, from just the DR perspective, would Canon 70D be similar to say, a T4i or T3i?

According to DxOMark every Canon dSLR they have tested basically has the same per pixel dynamic range. That includes the original 2003 APS-C Digital Rebel and the full frame 1D X. Any changes in dynamic range scores is because DxOMark uses a formula that changes the print dynamic range score based on the number of megapixels.

So you can choose to believe DxOMark, or you can look at possible flaws that would explain these seemingly erroneous results.

There is a group here that believe the results are accurate and can be explained by noise from the external analog to digital converter, I don't believe this is correct.

First DxOMark attempts to measure sensor noise by looking at the RAW file. This basic concept is inaccurate because manufactures can apply different amounts noise reduction prior to the RAW file being written. Case in point the Nikon D300, Nikon D300s, and the Nikon D90 all use the same sensor. Yet the Nikon D90 scores higher than the Nikon D300 and Nikon D300s, because the D90 applies more noise reduction PRIOR to the RAW file being written.

Camera that use Sony sensors apply noise reduction at the sensor level prior to the RAW file being written.

Canon embeds information in the RAW file to be used by their RAW converter DPP. Third party RAW converters don't take advantage of this information. For example Canon masks portions of the edge of their sensor, to provide information on both row and column sensor noise, 3rd party RAW converters like the one used by DxOMark do not use this information.

Third party RAW converters attempt to directly read portions of the Canon CR2 file and directly convert them to RGB. There are several problems with this, first according to Canon's Chuck Westfall Canon RAW data is recorded in sYCC and not RGB.

So the process of direct conversion to RGB often result in unexpected results, like this CR2 image from my Canon 6D with a 3rd party RAW converter that doesn't know the 6D exists.

Another flaw in this attempted direct conversion to RGB is that it uses the HSB/HSV color space instead of the HSL color space used by Canon.

So what does all this actually mean. In my opinion the Canon CR2 file has been incorrectly reverse engineered by 3rd party RAW converters. This incorrect reverse engineering has only resulted in 12 bits of usable data per pixel and not the full 14 bits. And it is this that actually explains why testing sites that use 3rd party RAW converters show that Canon's per pixel dynamic range has remained unchanged in the last 10 years and not that the 2003 Digital Rebel and the Canon 1D X have the same per pixel dynamic range.

DxO doesn't tell the whole story though.  The real issue is the pattern noise which they don't even report.  The 70D is a good performer in that regard.  Hopefully Canon won't loose the recipe for future designs.

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David Hull
David Hull Veteran Member • Posts: 6,474
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
2

lost_in_utah wrote:

So it's a conspiracy against Canon in favor of Nikon?

Absolutely!  And Canon must be in on it since they don't reveal decoding secret to the RAW converter manufacturers.  Canon could eliminate this whole DR controversy by just revealing the secret.  Obviously they want to protect their proprietary DPP SW to maximize their profits -- oh, it's FREE?  Hmmm....

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fishy wishy
fishy wishy Veteran Member • Posts: 9,358
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

TTMartin wrote:

JasonED wrote:

d90 uses sony imx038

d300 uses sony imx021

This has been well documented.

Thank you for the correction.

Do the D90 and D300s use the same sensor?

Nah. It behaves different and scores different on dxo & comcast.net . I thought the D90 sensor was processing more before it outputs. A cleaner result but colour could be a bit off.

Abu Mahendra Veteran Member • Posts: 5,310
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

Sid911 wrote:

Apologies for noobie question, do all the Canon APS-C sensors display the same dynamic range? What I am really trying to find out is, from just the DR perspective, would Canon 70D be similar to say, a T4i or T3i?

The real issue is not the dynamic range as DxO reports it, it is the patterned nature of the noise in some (most) Canon implementations.  The 70D seems to be the best camera they have made to date in this regard -- it has more noise than the Nikon/Sony implementations but it is not nearly as patterned as some other Canon implementations.

I am one who actually likes the noise on many shots. The noise on the 650D is fine and smeared rather than splashed and rough.

And so you know it is not a case of reverse sour grapes, i also own a 6D which has stellar noise performance.

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Just another Canon shooter
Just another Canon shooter Veteran Member • Posts: 4,691
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
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Your examples do not really test the DR limits of the 70D. You need really deep shadows for that. The read noise is additive, not a multiplicative noise.

Try night shots.

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photog7320 Senior Member • Posts: 2,423
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says
3

lost_in_utah wrote:

Despite what the evidence and data says, you still disagree? The DR may be great to you, but relative to other cameras, it's not that great.

Imaging Resource shows the 70D yielding 13 stops and the D7100 yielding 13.1 stops.

If you think 0.1ev is even noticeable in print, much less the difference between "great" and "not that great", then you need help.

IR does note that D7100 recovered shadows have less noise. But the difference only matters to measurebators in forums. You apply more NR to recovered Canon shadows, and nobody can tell at large print sizes (i.e. 24").

And no, I don't care what DxO has to say. Given 14-bit ADCs you cannot even physically get the DR they claim for some cameras. And I'm not inclined to trust any site that tells me an APS-C DSLR has higher overall IQ then a Hasselblad MFDB. If you want to believe that nonsense, go right ahead.

The evidence tells a different story and believing in someone contrary to the evidence only shows your delusions.

The only delusions here are those of people who parrot DxO claims without actually comparing prints.

TTMartin
TTMartin Veteran Member • Posts: 7,304
Re: Noise reduction before raw file is written??????????????????

Tourlou wrote:

Where did you take this information? I want your references. By definition, a raw file is a map of the electron count of each photosite, not pixel. What can be applied by the manufacturer, is a correction of the luminance value per pixel to cover for manufacturing variations. The other map that's applied to a raw file is the defective (dark/hot) pixel correction. I never read anywhere that a noise reduction is applied at the raw file level.

Sony.net - Ultrahigh-Speed High Picture Quality CMOS Sensors Using Column-Parallel A/D Conversion

'The article presents the high-speed imaging technology based on column-parallel A/D conversion and the noise reduction technology used in this device.'

Anyway, this would not correct the shown images. The blacks are not black on lifted images. The image is fulle of read out/ dark noise. Maybe because of hot weather or a hot sensor (use of live view ).

Regards

Rene

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David Hull
David Hull Veteran Member • Posts: 6,474
Re: Noise reduction before raw file is written??????????????????
3

TTMartin wrote:

Tourlou wrote:

Where did you take this information? I want your references. By definition, a raw file is a map of the electron count of each photosite, not pixel. What can be applied by the manufacturer, is a correction of the luminance value per pixel to cover for manufacturing variations. The other map that's applied to a raw file is the defective (dark/hot) pixel correction. I never read anywhere that a noise reduction is applied at the raw file level.

Sony.net - Ultrahigh-Speed High Picture Quality CMOS Sensors Using Column-Parallel A/D Conversion

'The article presents the high-speed imaging technology based on column-parallel A/D conversion and the noise reduction technology used in this device.'

Anyway, this would not correct the shown images. The blacks are not black on lifted images. The image is fulle of read out/ dark noise. Maybe because of hot weather or a hot sensor (use of live view ).

Regards

Rene

People shouldn't get confused about noise reduction.  This article is comparing two different methodologies for implementing a signal processing function called the Correlated Double Sampler or CDS.  This bit of HW subtracts off the residual voltage that remains in the pixel diode when the sensor is cleared for a new image.  This means that the number reported as the RAW pixel value is strictly representative of the photons that were counted and not influenced by residual charge.

Both Canon and Sony have this feature, Canon uses an analog storage capacitor and Sony uses a count down digital ramp and a single bit ADC.  If there were significant differences here, there would be differences in the base read noise of the sensor itself.  Looking at the Sensorgen results we see that the best Canon designs are easily equal to anything Sony makes in terms of read noise so I don't think that the CDS is the problem (despite Sony's marketing pitch).

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RedFox88 Forum Pro • Posts: 29,707
Re: Lifting shadows with 1Dx

Um, no.  That says d7000.  Do you actually own a 1D X?  And lots of JPG noise/detail smearing in the corners.

R2D2 Forum Pro • Posts: 20,057
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

Daniel Lee Taylor wrote:

The evidence tells a different story and believing in someone contrary to the evidence only shows your delusions.

The only delusions here are those of people who parrot DxO claims without actually comparing prints.

Bingo.  The OUTPUT is the real bottom line.

R2

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hjulenissen Senior Member • Posts: 2,243
Re: 70D Dynamic Range is actually great, despite what DXOMark says

TTMartin wrote:

There is a group here that believe the results are accurate and can be explained by noise from the external analog to digital converter, I don't believe this is correct.

Thank you for acknowledging that other people dispute your understanding.

-h

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