What is this waxy look people are talking about?

Started May 12, 2017 | Discussions
Vincent AF
Vincent AF Regular Member • Posts: 350
Re: Bad example
1

GodSpeaks wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

I am on my cell phone now, but look at this kid's portrait from the Ken Rockwell review of the X-T2.

http://kenrockwell.com/fuji/x-t2.htm

Sorry, but that is definitely NOT a waxy look.

I have seen 'waxy' looks before. Some say Canon cameras produce it by default, but I have seen no evidence of that either. What I have seen is over processed images that smooth out skin (blemishes) too much. All too often such images look artificial or waxy.

You don't have to be sorry, that's fine, I know in this example it is also to my eyes very subtle. My view is just different coming from the old Olympus 4/3 camera's.

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KalleAnka Regular Member • Posts: 165
Re: Is it the sensor ? really... shoot RAW colombiano

KariP wrote:

KalleAnka wrote:

colombiano wrote:

There is waxyness in X-T1 jpeg files when ISO is 3200 and higher. One example of 100% crop from OOC jpeg at ISO6400, NR-2, sharpening 0. It's quite bad and I tend to not shoot people above ISO 2500 (where waxyness is not yet there).

The T1 has an X-trans II sensor, for which the wax is discussed at length. The OP was about the T-20, which is an X-trans II sensor.

Does the sensor produce the wax ? If it is the sensor the waxiness should be visible in RAW FILES ! Not just in jpegs.

"Waxyness" is probably a style decision (raw processing settings inside the camera) for jpegs - they in Fujifilm laboratories think it looks better than the noise. The models have not complained too much. Shooting RAW is easy if the wax disturbs.

Yes, it is the built in RAW processing that produces wax. But only for X-trans II cameras.

Threaded Senior Member • Posts: 1,972
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
2

Batdude wrote:

Alan Brown wrote:

Batdude wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

herc182 wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

Haikoman wrote:

It has more to do with any of the 16mp X-trans 2 cameras. Not x-trans 1 and 3. If you use the search engine you'll find enough threads about it to have to clear your schedule for the next week.

Basically it was over-aggressive noise reduction on the jpegs specifically, once you started to go higher in iso and with no option of switching it off. It did not affect Raw files.

The xt20 is x-trans 3 I believe so it shouldn't have that problem.

I disagree, I have seen this problem with alle three generations and there are reports it has to do with the x-trans sensor layout. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's. I am, besides Fujifilm, a Nikon user and an ex Olympus 4/3 user and I can say the Olympus was best at rendering realistic skin tones, the Nikons second and the Fuji third. Of course, it is also a matter of taste. I know some of my photography friends agree that the Fuji has a waxi look, but they like it, because it doesn't show all skin imperfections as much. For true portrait photography, I myself choose my Nikons though. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's.

Do you have an example? Thanks

I am on my cell phone now, but look at this kid's portrait from the Ken Rockwell review of the X-T2.

http://kenrockwell.com/fuji/x-t2.htm

I too just shot some photos of my kid at home at only iso 3200 with 100% natural light and I was in shock to see a very pronounced plasticky look on the skin in jpeg, NR set to -3.

Will be good to see these shots. I'm glad somone is actually going to put something fresh up.

Appreciate that.

I'm so sorry Alan I don't have those photos. I was playing with the XT2 and returned it, then I erased those photos to use the SD card. i didn't even save them in my hard drive because they were just random shots.

How about if other plenty of XTrans III owners post some samples at those isos? I'm sure they must have plenty of samples.

I think that the only cameras that don't do that are the Xtrans I models.

Back when the new sensor appeared more than a year ago in the X-Pro2 there were plenty such samples being posted, and it was well established that the high ISO form of waxiness was history.

Now we're expected to accept that conclusion was wrong because you alone saw the evidence when you purchased the XT2 and then returned it (according to your other thread) - but it didn't occur to you to keep the pictures?

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Emile15 Regular Member • Posts: 376
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

Mmm... Since Rockwell always photographs his kids when reviewing cameras what about the images of Ryan made by the Nikon D750 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d750.htm or the D810 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d810.htm

Taste plays an important role in photography but good skin colour is good skin colour and I'll have the Fuji's anytime (in fact Rockwell has claimed on numerous occasions that he prefers the Fuji's because of the way they render skin colour, but that is by the by).

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Vincent AF
Vincent AF Regular Member • Posts: 350
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

Emile15 wrote:

Mmm... Since Rockwell always photographs his kids when reviewing cameras what about the images of Ryan made by the Nikon D750 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d750.htm or the D810 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d810.htm

Taste plays an important role in photography but good skin colour is good skin colour and I'll have the Fuji's anytime (in fact Rockwell has claimed on numerous occasions that he prefers the Fuji's because of the way they render skin colour, but that is by the by).

I know Rockwell likes the skin rendering best of the Fuji. And to be honoust, I am not impressed with the skin rendering in these examples of the Nikons. It seems like the aggressive noise reduction is largly to blame for the effect in these examples. They too look quite waxy to me. Maybe the old digital camera's like the Olympus, didn't have this aggressive noise reduction and therefore rendered skin more realistic.  For me the differences are mostly noticeable at low iso though. I will try to do a comparison of skin rendering with low iso on my Nikon and Fuji camera's.

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helmus
helmus Contributing Member • Posts: 660
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

KalleAnka wrote:

colombiano wrote:

There is waxyness in X-T1 jpeg files when ISO is 3200 and higher. One example of 100% crop from OOC jpeg at ISO6400, NR-2, sharpening 0. It's quite bad and I tend to not shoot people above ISO 2500 (where waxyness is not yet there).

The T1 has an X-trans II sensor, for which the wax is discussed at length. The OP was about the T-20, which is an X-trans II sensor.

Sorry, but this is wrong...

http://www.fujifilm.com/products/digital_cameras/x/fujifilm_x_t20/

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(Sorry, English is not my native language)

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JS Burnie
JS Burnie Veteran Member • Posts: 3,270
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

X-T20 is xtrans III.

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Joachim Gerstl
Joachim Gerstl Veteran Member • Posts: 7,904
Re: No Waxy-ness
1

Vincent AF wrote:

John Motts wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

RA40 wrote:

As a potential X-T2 or X-T20 buyer seeing this come up brought more curiosity. Pics of youthful types often skew my perceptions of skin smoothness. Their pores and lack of life/scars are almost ideal. Often I see that these lighter tones get blown to some extent by jpeg files, they seem very smooth. The Fuji term waxiness I could grasp. If using the film emulation this may also alter the contrast on such tones.

Would like to see more though maybe with males who often these days have that unshaved look then we get an idea of contrasting facial hair on skin.

Here are two examples of men (as found on Flickr). The first one is sooc shot with a X-T1 (the X-T2 doesn't show up yet, the numbers must be too low), the second one is shot by a Olympus E-5.

I know I know, both very different pictures and different guys, but it still shows the rendering imo.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/sinvertigo/14225699941/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ruffedgedesign/9234101631/

You're comparing a truly dreadful snapshot from a Fuji with a much more competent (albeit rather dark) shot from the Olympus. Not a fair comparison at all.
Those new to photography might conclude that the image quality of the Olympus is in a totally different league from the Fuji from these samples, when of course we all know that it's the photographer and not the camera that is responsible for the differences seen here.

Clearly all true, I wasn't comparing two camera's, just the rendering of the skin, that to my eye, is more natural with the Olympus. At the same settings the differences would surely be more subtle, although in my experiences still there and visible.
But if people don't see that distinct rendering on the pic of the young boy by Ken Rockwell, then there is really no use in discussing this further. I am happy to read such good experiences with the Fuji's. I love mine as well.

This is all about very subtle differences and a matter of taste as well, there to me is nothing wrong with the Fuji camera's.

We are comparing the kit lens at 55mm wide open where it is not sharp with a prime lens stopped down to f2.8 in totally different light of course. But we are comparing.

It's strange that we have to "rely" on such strange comparisons. Are there no waxy shots taken with the X-T2 plus 56mm lens?

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britcam
britcam Senior Member • Posts: 2,462
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

How about this - ISO 6400 JPG for waxy look.

For comparison, second pic converted from RAW

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Regards
Rich S in Brittany (britcam)

Derek49 wrote:

herc182 wrote:

Hi

I just got the xt20 and see a lot of reports on the forum and elsewhere about waxy jpeg.

Question - what does that look like? Is it Iso sensitive and does it appear in raw? Basically not sure what the fuss is about. Thanks

Well, it now 13 hours since the OP posted the question - strange no-one has yet provided a convincing sample despite all the fuss about this subject.

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KalleAnka Regular Member • Posts: 165
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

JS Burnie wrote:

X-T20 is xtrans III.

Yes. That's what I meant to say, in contrast to all examples from the T1, E2 etc that have been shown in this thread. They're irrelevant for the T20. But I slipped on my iPhone.

DarnGoodPhotos Senior Member • Posts: 7,709
The issue is easy to reproduce
1

If you have an X-Trans2 camera and want to reproduce the issue just take a self portrait at ISO1600 and ISO6400. You will see noise reduction applied to places on your face, like the forehead and cheeks, in the 6400 photo. There is no camera setting to remove the issue.

I only kept my T1 for a month or two, I sold it due to the issue, before moving back to my old Pro1 with its beautiful IQ but here are two examples I could find.

Face on the right

Any of their faces, but mainly the guy in the back.

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KalleAnka Regular Member • Posts: 165
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

britcam wrote:

How about this - ISO 6400 JPG for waxy look.

For comparison, second pic converted from RAW

Why do you post a picture from an XE2? Wax on that Fuji generation is well known. The thread is about the T20 and X-trans III.

Tommi K1 Senior Member • Posts: 5,431
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

herc182 wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

herc182 wrote:

Peter Foiles wrote:

This is a good example of why people were asking for examples because seeing the same image people see different things. What I see is an image of a young person with a smooth complexion, nothing waxy at all. You clearly perceive it differently.

I agree. I saw nothing there but a good photo and a kid with smooth skin!

You know, if you don't see it in this shot, you will be just fine and shouldn't have any worries for your portrait photography. Just keep noise reduction at -2 and use as low an iso as you can. I notice not a lot of people percieve the issue like I do.

And for the record, I love my Fuji's and have no problem leaving my Nikon kit at home on travels and such. Just for professional portrait work, I prefer my Nikon, as I percieve that to give a more natural look that I like more.

fuji sensors are optimized for human skin, why it has better than canon or nikon skintones. human skin is waxy, what surprises many...

And that's totally fine. Photography is so subjective and if for whatever reason something doesn't work in your eyes, that's fine. I was just curious about this waxy issue, and couldn't spot it. I actually wouldn't have bought the camera had I read into it in more detail on here, but glad I did!

Derek49 Regular Member • Posts: 428
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

Have a look at Richard Butler's review of the X-T2 (same sensor as your X-T20)

https://www.dpreview.com/reviews/fujifilm-x-t2/6

He noted some some smearing on human faces at high ISO's

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JS Burnie
JS Burnie Veteran Member • Posts: 3,270
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

Yes, and he notes that it is a JPEG engine problem.  Raw files should be fine.

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Batdude
Batdude Senior Member • Posts: 3,370
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
2

Threaded wrote:

Batdude wrote:

Alan Brown wrote:

Batdude wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

herc182 wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

Haikoman wrote:

It has more to do with any of the 16mp X-trans 2 cameras. Not x-trans 1 and 3. If you use the search engine you'll find enough threads about it to have to clear your schedule for the next week.

Basically it was over-aggressive noise reduction on the jpegs specifically, once you started to go higher in iso and with no option of switching it off. It did not affect Raw files.

The xt20 is x-trans 3 I believe so it shouldn't have that problem.

I disagree, I have seen this problem with alle three generations and there are reports it has to do with the x-trans sensor layout. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's. I am, besides Fujifilm, a Nikon user and an ex Olympus 4/3 user and I can say the Olympus was best at rendering realistic skin tones, the Nikons second and the Fuji third. Of course, it is also a matter of taste. I know some of my photography friends agree that the Fuji has a waxi look, but they like it, because it doesn't show all skin imperfections as much. For true portrait photography, I myself choose my Nikons though. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's.

Do you have an example? Thanks

I am on my cell phone now, but look at this kid's portrait from the Ken Rockwell review of the X-T2.

http://kenrockwell.com/fuji/x-t2.htm

I too just shot some photos of my kid at home at only iso 3200 with 100% natural light and I was in shock to see a very pronounced plasticky look on the skin in jpeg, NR set to -3.

Will be good to see these shots. I'm glad somone is actually going to put something fresh up.

Appreciate that.

I'm so sorry Alan I don't have those photos. I was playing with the XT2 and returned it, then I erased those photos to use the SD card. i didn't even save them in my hard drive because they were just random shots.

How about if other plenty of XTrans III owners post some samples at those isos? I'm sure they must have plenty of samples.

I think that the only cameras that don't do that are the Xtrans I models.

Back when the new sensor appeared more than a year ago in the X-Pro2 there were plenty such samples being posted, and it was well established that the high ISO form of waxiness was history.

Now we're expected to accept that conclusion was wrong because you alone saw the evidence when you purchased the XT2 and then returned it (according to your other thread) - but it didn't occur to you to keep the pictures?

Now you need evidence? Why would I have to "keep the pictures"? What, are you judge judy or something?

You can use one and look at it yourself, is very easy. I'm just simply agreeing with others that are commenting on this waxy subject because I did see the jpeg at iso 3200. Whether others see it or not that's not my problem. I was just simply playing around with the AF but when I saw the photos on my screen then I saw what I saw. That's all. I'm innocent, really. What I'm almost sure about is that the waxy look doesn't show up in every light situation.  I'm just saying.

So are you saying that the people that are bringing this up now, they are lying?

Look, honestly, If some don't see or mind and love that japanese look that's totally fine with me and that's really non of my business and that's perfectly cool with me.

As to the plenty of samples posted more than a year ago, well I simply cannot answer that and I sure had nothing to do with that. Am I free to go now?

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Touraine Regular Member • Posts: 488
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
1

I had the same problem when I did a pro shoot  of Becks and Posh in Madame Tussauds. David Beckham looked well waxy. But Posh looked less waxy than she does in real life. !!! Fuji sensor problem ?? No idea. Anyway, I got paid.

Another DP Review dumb thread.

Cliff Fujii
Cliff Fujii Veteran Member • Posts: 8,318
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?

Vincent AF wrote:

Emile15 wrote:

Mmm... Since Rockwell always photographs his kids when reviewing cameras what about the images of Ryan made by the Nikon D750 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d750.htm or the D810 here: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/d810.htm

Taste plays an important role in photography but good skin colour is good skin colour and I'll have the Fuji's anytime (in fact Rockwell has claimed on numerous occasions that he prefers the Fuji's because of the way they render skin colour, but that is by the by).

I know Rockwell likes the skin rendering best of the Fuji. And to be honoust, I am not impressed with the skin rendering in these examples of the Nikons. It seems like the aggressive noise reduction is largly to blame for the effect in these examples. They too look quite waxy to me. Maybe the old digital camera's like the Olympus, didn't have this aggressive noise reduction and therefore rendered skin more realistic. For me the differences are mostly noticeable at low iso though. I will try to do a comparison of skin rendering with low iso on my Nikon and Fuji camera's.

KR is well known for in camera JPGs.  It just happens that the default X-T2 JPG looks pretty good with images of people.  Since I am a RAW shooter, I have never seen images I have taken in camera JPGs.  My issue is that on subjects where saturated colors is appropriate, I have a harder time getting them with my X-T2 than my D810.  Even with Velvia, I can't reproduce the colors I get with the D810.  I can get, however, close enough for it not to matter.

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Cliff

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Exit10 Senior Member • Posts: 2,193
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
3

Touraine wrote:

I had the same problem when I did a pro shoot of Becks and Posh in Madame Tussauds. David Beckham looked well waxy. But Posh looked less waxy than she does in real life. !!! Fuji sensor problem ?? No idea. Anyway, I got paid.

Another DP Review dumb thread.

Or another dumb response?

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Threaded Senior Member • Posts: 1,972
Re: What is this waxy look people are talking about?
4

Batdude wrote:

Threaded wrote:

Batdude wrote:

Alan Brown wrote:

Batdude wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

herc182 wrote:

Vincent AF wrote:

Haikoman wrote:

It has more to do with any of the 16mp X-trans 2 cameras. Not x-trans 1 and 3. If you use the search engine you'll find enough threads about it to have to clear your schedule for the next week.

Basically it was over-aggressive noise reduction on the jpegs specifically, once you started to go higher in iso and with no option of switching it off. It did not affect Raw files.

The xt20 is x-trans 3 I believe so it shouldn't have that problem.

I disagree, I have seen this problem with alle three generations and there are reports it has to do with the x-trans sensor layout. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's. I am, besides Fujifilm, a Nikon user and an ex Olympus 4/3 user and I can say the Olympus was best at rendering realistic skin tones, the Nikons second and the Fuji third. Of course, it is also a matter of taste. I know some of my photography friends agree that the Fuji has a waxi look, but they like it, because it doesn't show all skin imperfections as much. For true portrait photography, I myself choose my Nikons though. It seems that at high iso's the waxy look is more pronounced, but I notice it also at low iso's.

Do you have an example? Thanks

I am on my cell phone now, but look at this kid's portrait from the Ken Rockwell review of the X-T2.

http://kenrockwell.com/fuji/x-t2.htm

I too just shot some photos of my kid at home at only iso 3200 with 100% natural light and I was in shock to see a very pronounced plasticky look on the skin in jpeg, NR set to -3.

Will be good to see these shots. I'm glad somone is actually going to put something fresh up.

Appreciate that.

I'm so sorry Alan I don't have those photos. I was playing with the XT2 and returned it, then I erased those photos to use the SD card. i didn't even save them in my hard drive because they were just random shots.

How about if other plenty of XTrans III owners post some samples at those isos? I'm sure they must have plenty of samples.

I think that the only cameras that don't do that are the Xtrans I models.

Back when the new sensor appeared more than a year ago in the X-Pro2 there were plenty such samples being posted, and it was well established that the high ISO form of waxiness was history.

Now we're expected to accept that conclusion was wrong because you alone saw the evidence when you purchased the XT2 and then returned it (according to your other thread) - but it didn't occur to you to keep the pictures?

Now you need evidence? Why would I have to "keep the pictures"? What, are you judge judy or something?

You can use one and look at it yourself, is very easy. I'm just simply agreeing with others that are commenting on this waxy subject because I did see the jpeg at iso 3200. Whether others see it or not that's not my problem. I was just simply playing around with the AF but when I saw the photos on my screen then I saw what I saw. That's all. I'm innocent, really. What I'm almost sure about is that the waxy look doesn't show up in every light situation. I'm just saying.

So are you saying that the people that are bringing this up now, they are lying?

Look, honestly, If some don't see or mind and love that japanese look that's totally fine with me and that's really non of my business and that's perfectly cool with me.

As to the plenty of samples posted more than a year ago, well I simply cannot answer that and I sure had nothing to do with that. Am I free to go now?

A grand total of two people in this thread (including you) claim to have seen waxiness in X-Trans III images, and so far the only example put forward of this is a Ken Rockwell portrait that isnt remotely waxy, and some picture you definitely took that you were SHOCKED by  like OMG and then you deleted.  Am I saying you're lying, no, but is yours a minority view on an entirely subjective matter, yes.  Absolutely.

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