_sem_

Lives in Pitcairn Pitcairn
Joined on Dec 18, 2008

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Total: 196, showing: 1 – 20
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On article Google Pixel XL camera review (200 comments in total)
In reply to:

_sem_: Another Pixel camera review that fails to make it clear what to expect in low light *handheld* using HDR+ vs top phone cameras which have OIS. Cameraphones are rarely used on tripods, so the studio comparison isn't of much use.

Sorry tripod makes the comparison invalid, except for shooting on tripod, which is rarely the case with smartphone users. A valid comparison would involve a relevant and controlled amount of camera shake as in handheld use.

Link | Posted on Apr 7, 2017 at 08:14 UTC
In reply to:

ttran88: Nikon killed the DLs to protect Nikon 1 sales. Like how they won't release a a big sensor mirrorless to protect their dslr sales. Or how they won't release more APSC lenses like the great DX 35mm f1.8 to protect their FX sales. They probably won't make their video on dslrs better either to protect their Key Mission sales. Good job Nikon!!!

The impression is they axed the N1 dept a while ago. Stillborn anyway...

Link | Posted on Feb 13, 2017 at 21:11 UTC

Page not found???

Link | Posted on Jan 13, 2017 at 09:54 UTC as 4th comment
On article Google Pixel XL camera review (200 comments in total)

Another Pixel camera review that fails to make it clear what to expect in low light *handheld* using HDR+ vs top phone cameras which have OIS. Cameraphones are rarely used on tripods, so the studio comparison isn't of much use.

Link | Posted on Dec 23, 2016 at 09:28 UTC as 29th comment | 2 replies
On article New 20mm F2 4.5x macro lens released by Mitakon (122 comments in total)
In reply to:

Carl Mucks: So, it's a microscope lens in DSLR mount. I guess it's just easier to use a regular microscope that provides a camera mount -- at least you'll have a lighting built, and holders, etc.

"Running around outdoor with a microscope attached to the camera?"

This is not infeasible, with flash attached properly.

Link | Posted on Dec 20, 2016 at 13:26 UTC
On article New 20mm F2 4.5x macro lens released by Mitakon (122 comments in total)
In reply to:

DamianFI: This'll be ergonomically a nightmare. They need some kind of lighting kit with it.

Anything around 4x is ergonomically a nightmare.

"Users no longer need to DIY or use any extension tubes to reach high magnification shooting."
Well, I don't think there is such a big ergonomic difference between this and the Nikkor AI-s 20/3.5 reversed on a bit of extension. Attaching the reversal ring and an extension tube takes much less effort than providing support and light. The aperture is manual, and 4x-4.5x is not much range. The only thing I can think of is that it might be sharper wide-open, like microscope objectives, for stacking applications.

Link | Posted on Dec 20, 2016 at 09:06 UTC
On article New 20mm F2 4.5x macro lens released by Mitakon (122 comments in total)
In reply to:

SantaFeBill: Wish they had made it from 2x to 4x - but then it wouldn't be selling for US$199. :-)
Also, anyone thinking about this has to think about the cost of supplemental lighting, as other posts have mentioned.

It'd take a built-in helical extension, but it is possible.

Link | Posted on Dec 20, 2016 at 08:54 UTC
On article New 20mm F2 4.5x macro lens released by Mitakon (122 comments in total)
In reply to:

Carl Mucks: So, it's a microscope lens in DSLR mount. I guess it's just easier to use a regular microscope that provides a camera mount -- at least you'll have a lighting built, and holders, etc.

I think it's not a microscope lens in DSLR mount. There are two kinds of microscope objectives and this one doesn't look like any of the two.

Link | Posted on Dec 20, 2016 at 08:51 UTC
On article Sony FE 50mm F2.8 Macro Sample Gallery (84 comments in total)
In reply to:

Favorable Exponynt: very sharp, but not for portraits :p

Or perhaps they should try a different model or photographer?
Whoever will shoot portraits with it will likely appreciate the focus limiter lacking on many a macro in this range.

Link | Posted on Dec 16, 2016 at 23:35 UTC
On article OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock adds 13 ports to your MacBook (151 comments in total)
In reply to:

cosinaphile: 300 dollars ???? 300 really ??????

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaahahahahahaahahahahahahahaha.....
hahahhahaahahahahahahahahahahahahaah
hahaha.....aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa......AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHA......

YOU WANT A DONGLE ? a frickin 300 dongle

this debacle , just when you think it cant get any worse
this is 100 dollar item , if that . at best !.... but lets sell it the apple faithful for 300 usd?.........my god ! you cant make this crap up

Well others tend to sell TB3 for similar money... but the biggest issue is that they don't even work ;(

Link | Posted on Nov 15, 2016 at 10:13 UTC
On article OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock adds 13 ports to your MacBook (151 comments in total)
In reply to:

Marcos Villaroman: What's nice about USB-C is that this docking station can be used by all laptops with a USB-C connector.

Pity it only has the one mini displayport. I wonder if two to three 4K monitors will require the bandwidth of a separate USB-C port.

I'm curious regarding the reliability. I've noticed several major vendors have major issues with the compatibility of their "own" TB docks. For instance, Dell TB15 was silently withdrawn, presumably because of overheating issues with 2 4K displays - but there were severe issues even with usb mice and keyboards.

Link | Posted on Nov 15, 2016 at 10:11 UTC
In reply to:

rfsIII: Great article!
One question: Are you saying that it's only through the camera makers' software that we can achieve these effects? Photoshop, Lightroom, GIMP and the rest won't give us access to these features?
If true this is a bummer because the mfr software is awful. Every time I have to use Nikon's VIewNX I feel like throwing my computer (and my camera) into the Mersey.

Yes there are technical reasons why auto-raw-ETTR probably wouldn't always work perfectly if implemented (small specular highlights, low-res exposure sensors with DSLR or metering simplifications with mirrorless).

Folks that use the abbreviation "ETTL" mostly misuse ETTR/ETTL for increasing/decreasing exposure.

Link | Posted on Nov 10, 2016 at 13:33 UTC
In reply to:

obsolescence: The last sentence stands out in my mind: "Short of providing the tools that would allow photographers to reliably expose to the right..." This article should be expanded to encompass Raw capture & processing. Unless the lighting is carefully controlled, JPEG capture actually cripples the system by applying generic processing, however sophisticated it may be, where it should really be tailored to the scene.

If we're truly interested in maximizing DR, then Raw capture is the only way to go and good exposure technique is the first step. The only way to refine exposure technique is to analyze the Raw files with RawDigger and learn the response of the camera's metering modes in different lighting scenarios. The next step is to learn and practice the best Raw and post processing techniques. Finally, making prints using custom profiles for the media provides the most reliable way to judge the results because screen viewing does not reveal all the subtleties.

Some more resources regarding ETTR:
https://www.dpreview.com/articles/6641165460/ettr-exposed
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exposing_to_the_right
https://www.dpreview.com/articles/8148042898/exposure-vs-brightening

Link | Posted on Nov 10, 2016 at 07:53 UTC
In reply to:

gorllu: I don't understand one thing. How does shadow/highlight setting in photoshop or lightroom works so I can get astonishing DR from my D800. I mean, why there is no such a preset build in camera so I can shoot jpeg (not for serious work) ? I have adjusted tone curve so image looks flat, but it has little to do with shadow and highlight preset.

And re-reading the original question... The tone curve acts globally, cannot do local contrast adjustments which are crucial here. The main pp operation of ADL is the "fill-light" ("shadows protection" in Nikon raw converters). But ADL uses it sparingly.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 15:34 UTC
In reply to:

obsolescence: The last sentence stands out in my mind: "Short of providing the tools that would allow photographers to reliably expose to the right..." This article should be expanded to encompass Raw capture & processing. Unless the lighting is carefully controlled, JPEG capture actually cripples the system by applying generic processing, however sophisticated it may be, where it should really be tailored to the scene.

If we're truly interested in maximizing DR, then Raw capture is the only way to go and good exposure technique is the first step. The only way to refine exposure technique is to analyze the Raw files with RawDigger and learn the response of the camera's metering modes in different lighting scenarios. The next step is to learn and practice the best Raw and post processing techniques. Finally, making prints using custom profiles for the media provides the most reliable way to judge the results because screen viewing does not reveal all the subtleties.

Yes. But... Based on the history of digital cameras up to now, I guess we will not live to see raw histograms in mainstream cameras. I guess makers think user have enough trouble adjusting one exposure, so they refuse to introduce an additional one (one for optimal raw capture, another for proper display). The whole raw thing is an optional extra, not sth they would be prepared to design the user interface for. Clipping marks for raw data in regular histograms might be feasible.

But I think there is room for further improvements of automatic in-camera algorithms that could better handle harsh light. Because a broader target audience could benefit from this. I guess it may become feasible to
1) produce similar rendering without unnecessary raw data underexposure (with less noise in the lifted shadows),
2) implement auto-raw-ETTR metering mode (makes sense after 1)
3) improve rendering and offer several defaults,
4) implement reconstruction of partially-blown highlights.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 15:12 UTC
In reply to:

gorllu: I don't understand one thing. How does shadow/highlight setting in photoshop or lightroom works so I can get astonishing DR from my D800. I mean, why there is no such a preset build in camera so I can shoot jpeg (not for serious work) ? I have adjusted tone curve so image looks flat, but it has little to do with shadow and highlight preset.

One more thing, LR has an algorithm for the reconstruction of partially-blown highlights, which may often visually cover up the ugly artifacts of digital blowing. AFAIK no camera has this in the JPG engine.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 14:02 UTC

"But it's probably Nikon's Active D-Lighting system that does the best job of this. It combines up to a 1EV exposure reduction with an adaptive tone curve to give well balanced JPEGs even in high contrast situations."

The problem with ADL is that when the jpg histogram looks exposed to the right, the raw highlights are likely a stop or two below blowing!?
I was studying ADL actions trying to understand what it does. My guess is that ADL (and the other methods too) do not underexpose data in order to save raw highlights. It rather seems that this is a convenience they do for their processing part. The main action of their instant post-processing is the "fill-light", which in its pure form besides opening the shadows also happens to push the highlights up a little bit. This little bit seems to be compensated by exposure reduction. Adobe users won't be aware of this, because Adobes' sliders are decoupled under the hood.
I am a bit partial to Nikon, but I guess Sony's DRO works better.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 13:59 UTC as 16th comment
In reply to:

0MitchAG: This just made me realise... Is there any reason you shouldn't use the High or Auto iDynamic setting on the Panasonic m43 cameras when shooting RAW? It sets the tone curve for the histogram, and the dynamic range of live-view on the display, giving a better idea of the total dynamic range you can capture.

It probably may give you a worse impression about the exposure of the highlights which is critical for digital capture (too low: more noise due to DR waste; too high: highlights blown abruptly). Because there is scene-dependent processing involved. Makers should provide an indicator of raw-highlights-blowing in RGB histograms.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 13:44 UTC
In reply to:

gorllu: I don't understand one thing. How does shadow/highlight setting in photoshop or lightroom works so I can get astonishing DR from my D800. I mean, why there is no such a preset build in camera so I can shoot jpeg (not for serious work) ? I have adjusted tone curve so image looks flat, but it has little to do with shadow and highlight preset.

ADL etc have a restriction that they must be implementable in-camera and spit out the result in no time. ADL has already come a long way from its initial version, but it still wastes a couple of DR stops. The DR of the in-camera rendering engine seems to be more restricted than that of the sensor. And it seems difficult to produce good auto processing defaults of heavy adjustments without knowing what is important in an image.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 13:40 UTC
In reply to:

(unknown member): Very interesting article, but - imho - also very confusing.
It would help me a lot if a clearer distinction would be made on what affects RAW files, and what only refers to JPG.

After reading all this, I still wouldn't know if using Nikon's D-Lighting would be recommended in some situations, if shooting RAW only.

All these techiques are designed to work in-camera with JPG. They are supported in factory converters, but not in 3rd-party converters. It would be nice if the raw-ETTR alternative was explained in a follow-up, but mind this is a DIY approach.

For shooting raw only, the issues are case-specific and undisclosed by camera makers. With raw it isy more reliable and efficient to turn them off, expose for the highlights carefully with a neutral or wide-DR camera setting (S-log) if available, then process in a wide-DR capable raw converter.
Specifically, Nikon's ADL may be useful with raw in conditions of quickly changing light and no time for adjustments, because the default meter is prone to going after the midtones and blowing the highlight. Then the reduction of raw exposure may save highlights in raw (eventhough the JPG looks blown). Mind the Highlight-Weighted Meter should be a better idea for this purpose, however it doesn't seem to be designed for maximizing _raw_ highlights.

Link | Posted on Nov 9, 2016 at 13:34 UTC
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