Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

Started Mar 21, 2016 | Discussions
bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
30

I have now measured measured the Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) of the Nikon D5 (shown here compared to the Nikon D4) (thanks to AndresE for the raw data)

This curve looks more Sony-like than any previous Nikon.
Some low ISO dynamic range has been traded off against extraordinary high ISO performance.

My Low Light ISO for the Nikon D5 is 6982 which beats the previous high of 6400 for the Phase One IQ250 by 0.13 stops.
You can see these values in the sort-able table below the PDR chart.

This type of design is not ISO-invariant at all. Note the Shadow Improvement (again compared to the D4) :

More measurements are required to better understand what's "under the hood" but it looks like a remarkable achievement.

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Bill ( Your trusted source for independent sensor data at http://www.PhotonsToPhotos.net )

Nikon D5
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jvigano Forum Member • Posts: 74
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

Bill, how does that compare with the D3?

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www.josevigano.com

OP bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
1

jvigano wrote:

Bill, how does that compare with the D3?

I encourage people to follow the link to the interactive chart and play with it themselves.

In the case of the D5 and D3 you will see this:

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Bill ( Your trusted source for independent sensor data at http://www.PhotonsToPhotos.net )

logatom Regular Member • Posts: 146
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
1

Bill,

That's a great reading. Thanks for your quick and amazing (as always) effort.

Looks fantastic for high ISOs, but people caring more for a landscape performance will be a bit disappointed.

Greg

logatom Regular Member • Posts: 146
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
1

Bill,

I guess you're fine-tuning the measurements since I do not find the D5 on your interactive charts at this point.

thanks

Greg

OP bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

logatom wrote:

Bill,

I guess you're fine-tuning the measurements since I do not find the D5 on your interactive charts at this point.

Thanks for the "heads up"
I'm having trouble uploading to my site right now and didn't know the update had failed.

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Bill ( Your trusted source for independent sensor data at http://www.PhotonsToPhotos.net )

OP bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

logatom wrote:

Bill,

I guess you're fine-tuning the measurements since I do not find the D5 on your interactive charts at this point.

All set now. Thanks again for the "heads up".

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Bill ( Your trusted source for independent sensor data at http://www.PhotonsToPhotos.net )

logatom Regular Member • Posts: 146
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

OK, having a look.

StanyBuyle
StanyBuyle Senior Member • Posts: 1,293
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

Hi Bill. Thanks for your work.

D5, do I see a crippled DR? +Back to 2007 D3 standards...

If so, I hope it isn't the case with D500(but I fear it will...)...

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OP bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
4

StanyBuyle wrote:

Hi Bill. Thanks for your work.

You are welcome.

D5, do I see a crippled DR? +Back to 2007 D3 standards...

That depends on your point of view.
Personally I think low ISO Dynamic Range (DR) is too high for many photographers and that this is a welcome trade-off between a very respectable low ISO DR and extraordinary high ISO performance.

Look how close we're getting to the "Ideal FX" performance:

If so, I hope it isn't the case with D500(but I fear it will...)...

If the D500 follows this same pattern then some may be disappointed but personally I may have to rethink holding on to my D7200.

Regards,

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Bill ( Your trusted source for independent sensor data at http://www.PhotonsToPhotos.net )

syberman7 Senior Member • Posts: 1,195
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
1

bclaff wrote:

StanyBuyle wrote:

Hi Bill. Thanks for your work.

You are welcome.

D5, do I see a crippled DR? +Back to 2007 D3 standards...

That depends on your point of view.
Personally I think low ISO Dynamic Range (DR) is too high for many photographers and that this is a welcome trade-off between a very respectable low ISO DR and extraordinary high ISO performance.

Look how close we're getting to the "Ideal FX" performance:

If so, I hope it isn't the case with D500(but I fear it will...)...

If the D500 follows this same pattern then some may be disappointed but personally I may have to rethink holding on to my D7200.

Regards,

According to your own chart, the Sony A7RII is the 'low light champ', and it has two more stops of DR at base ISO. In fact it even exceeds the ideal FX at higher ISOs. Of course it won't do 12-14 fps.

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JasonED Contributing Member • Posts: 946
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

The high iso look impressive but I can't help but wonder if the low iso performance has been hampered by the need to support 4K...   Seems the read-out electronics have gotten noisier?

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OP bclaff Veteran Member • Posts: 8,303
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

syberman7 wrote:

According to your own chart, the Sony A7RII is the 'low light champ', and it has two more stops of DR at base ISO. In fact it even exceeds the ideal FX at higher ISOs. Of course it won't do 12-14 fps.

You seem confused by what is meant by "Low Light Champ", this is high ISO performance, not low ISO performance.
In terms of the charts, how far to the right a PDR of 6.5 is rather than how high the curve at it's maximum height.
(Like DxOMark Sports ISO Score rather than DxOMark Landscape Score)

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steras Senior Member • Posts: 1,078
So my initial impressions were right

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/57123902

Great work Bill. It is always very interesting to read about your analysis, thanks a lot!

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Slugsworth
Slugsworth Regular Member • Posts: 280
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
3

logatom wrote:

Bill,

That's a great reading. Thanks for your quick and amazing (as always) effort.

Looks fantastic for high ISOs, but people caring more for a landscape performance will be a bit disappointed.

Greg

They ideal workaround is, (for those that can afford it)

would be to have both the D5 and the D810 for low ISO & landscape work.

Going one step further would be the triple crown of the D5, D810 and the D500 for ALL your needs.

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Sharlin
Sharlin Contributing Member • Posts: 516
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

logatom wrote:

Looks fantastic for high ISOs, but people caring more for a landscape performance will be a bit disappointed.

Pretty sure the D5 (just like Canon's 1D(X) series) is meant to be a landscape shooter's camera. It's all about speed: ISO speed, burst speed, AF speed.

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Slugsworth
Slugsworth Regular Member • Posts: 280
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

Sharlin wrote:

logatom wrote:

Looks fantastic for high ISOs, but people caring more for a landscape performance will be a bit disappointed.

Pretty sure the D5 (just like Canon's 1D(X) series) is meant to be a landscape shooter's camera. It's all about speed: ISO speed, burst speed, AF speed.

I think you mean "isn't"and yes, totally agree, having the D810 to fill that gap nicely

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Sharlin
Sharlin Contributing Member • Posts: 516
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

Slugsworth wrote:

I think you mean "isn't"and yes, totally agree, having the D810 to fill that gap nicely

Oops, thanks. Changed the phrasing and forgot to negate the verb

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syberman7 Senior Member • Posts: 1,195
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ

bclaff wrote:

syberman7 wrote:

According to your own chart, the Sony A7RII is the 'low light champ', and it has two more stops of DR at base ISO. In fact it even exceeds the ideal FX at higher ISOs. Of course it won't do 12-14 fps.

You seem confused by what is meant by "Low Light Champ", this is high ISO performance, not low ISO performance.
In terms of the charts, how far to the right a PDR of 6.5 is rather than how high the curve at it's maximum height.
(Like DxOMark Sports ISO Score rather than DxOMark Landscape Score)

Maybe I worded that clumsily. The A7II has both better base ISO DR AND better high ISO DR according to your chart:

http://www.photonstophotos.net/Charts/PDR.htm#Ideal%20FX,Nikon%20D5,Sony%20ILCE-7RII

Thanks very much for the data by the way. All I'm debating is the interpretation.

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FDD5 Regular Member • Posts: 204
Re: Nikon D5 Photographic Dynamic Range (PDR) ... The New Low Light Champ
1

syberman7 wrote:

bclaff wrote:

syberman7 wrote:

According to your own chart, the Sony A7RII is the 'low light champ', and it has two more stops of DR at base ISO. In fact it even exceeds the ideal FX at higher ISOs. Of course it won't do 12-14 fps.

You seem confused by what is meant by "Low Light Champ", this is high ISO performance, not low ISO performance.
In terms of the charts, how far to the right a PDR of 6.5 is rather than how high the curve at it's maximum height.
(Like DxOMark Sports ISO Score rather than DxOMark Landscape Score)

Maybe I worded that clumsily. The A7II has both better base ISO DR AND better high ISO DR according to your chart:

http://www.photonstophotos.net/Charts/PDR.htm#Ideal%20FX,Nikon%20D5,Sony%20ILCE-7RII

Thanks very much for the data by the way. All I'm debating is the interpretation.

I think with low light champ he means ; 'My Low Light ISO for the Nikon D5 is 6982 which beats the previous high of 6400 for the Phase One IQ250 by 0.13 stops.'

Whereas the a7RII has 5846

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