Fujifilm X-T1 Review
JPEG Tone Curves /Dynamic Range
Our Dynamic Range measurement system involves shooting a calibrated Stouffer Step Wedge (13 stops total range) which is backlit using a daylight balanced lamp (98 CRI). A single shot of this produces a gray scale wedge from the camera's clipped white point down to black (example below). Each step of the scale is equivalent to 1/3 EV (a third of a stop), we select one step as 'middle gray' (defined as 50% luminance) and measure outwards to define the dynamic range. Hence there are 'two sides' to our results, the amount of shadow range (below middle gray) and the amount of highlight range (above middle gray).
To most people highlight range is the first thing they think about when talking about dynamic range, that is the amount of highlight detail above middle gray the camera can capture before it clips to white. Shadow range is more complicated; in our test the line on the graph stops as soon as the luminance value drops below our defined 'black point' (about 2% luminance) or the signal-to-noise ratio drops below a predefined value (where shadow detail would be swamped by noise), whichever comes first.
The chart below shows the X-T1's default tone curve, in comparison to some of its immediate peers.
The X-T1 offers around 4EV of highlight range, with a relatively gentle roll-off at the top rather than an abrupt clip to white. This gives a quite natural-looking, 'flim-like' response. At the other end of the range, though, it dips down rather abruptly to black, which gives distinctly punchy images but does mean that shadows are somewhat prone to blocking up.
If you don't like this, the X-T1 allows you to tweak it's tonal response in various ways. You can change its 'Dynamic Range' setting to increase highlight range by either one or two stops (which we'll cover on the following page), and use the 'Highlight Tone' and 'Shadow Tone' controls to adjust the contrast.
Highlight and Shadow Tone options
The X-T1 allows you independently adjust the shadow and highlight regions of its tone curve, to increase or decrease contrast in these areas. This enables you to more closely match the tonal response of earlier X-Series cameras (which had slightly lower-contrast shadow responses), if you wish. The adjustment is available in two steps either side of normal (Hard, Medium Hard, Medium Soft and Soft), and the highlight and shadow options can be combined freely. In the graphs below we're showing just the extremes for clarity.
The Highlight Tone control changes the local contrast above middle grey, but doesn't have any impact on the white clipping point (which is controlled by the DR setting). Setting it towards 'Hard' can accentuate detail on a dull day, while 'Soft' can help to render more visible detail in highlights which are close to clipping. The Shadow control works slightly differently, changing the point the shadows clip to black. Setting it towards 'Hard' can suppress shadow detail in deliberately low-key images, while 'Soft' opens up the shadows to reveal more detail.
These adjustments can be combined with the camera's DR modes, either at the point of shooting or later, using the in-camera Raw converter. You can also adjust overall brightness in the Raw converter, which altogether gives a good degree of flexibility to help you produce a JPEG you like.
'New' Standard tone curve and shadow detail
When we reviewed the X100S, some readers expressed concern that the camera's default tone curve clipped more aggressively to black than the X-Pro1. If you compare the X-T1's standard 'Provia' setting to the X-Pro1's version, you can see this is still the case. Interestingly, though, the tone curve is almost exactly the same as the X-Pro1's 'Astia/Soft' setting. So the 'Provia/Standard' and 'Astia/Soft' settings now use essentially the same tone curve, differing mainly in terms of colour rather than contrast.
The X-Pro1 Provia tone curve can't be precisely imitated on the X-T1 through the use of the Shadow Tone setting (since it affects everything from immediately below middle grey, whereas the X-Pro1 Provia only differed in terms of the deeper shadows). However setting the Shadow Tone to 'Medium Soft' probably offers the closest approximation. If you're looking for that gentler, lower-contrast look, the X-T1's Pro Neg. Std film mode offers the same contrast but with a different, more muted color response. This is illustrated in the real-world example below.
Provia / Standard film mode
Shadow tone Normal
Provia / Standard film mode
Shadow tone Medium Soft
Provia / Standard film mode
Shadow tone Soft
Astia /Soft film mode
Shadow tone Normal
Pro Neg Standard film mode
Shadow tone Normal
Here we've converted the same Raw file in-camera in several different ways, to look at how the Shadow Tone interacts with the Film Simulation mode. The Provia and Astia modes both block up the shadows at with Shadow Tone set to Normal, while Pro Neg Standard reveals more detail. However it can be approximately matched using Provia with the Shadow Tone set to Medium Soft, although there are still some differences in tonality. Setting Shadow Tone to soft pulls out even more detail, but the image does end up looking a little flat as a result.
|Smile by Olymguy|
from Ultra Asian Indian Female Faces
|Space Shuttle Cockpit- by vbuhay|
from Aircraft Control Stick
New York Times video journalist Ben Solomon spent a harrowing three weeks accompanying Iraqi Major Sajjad al-Hour as he and his men fought to retake Mosul from I.S. forces.
The 3D VR camera launched through a crowdfunding campaign in 2015 goes on sale beginning June 26.
Noctilucent clouds, a crescent moon and Venus were visible in the pre-dawn sky over Budapest yesterday. Photographer György Soponyai captured NASA's astronomy picture of the day.
Squirming pets won't sit still for photos? A Kickstarter campaign is looking to help.
Find out how Chris Burkard shifted from editorial photography to his true passions: landscapes, conservation and, of course, surfing.
The updated EyeEm app scans your camera roll and picks images that are composed particularly well, have the best quality, or highest chance of selling on EyeEm Market.
It's three years old but still a solid option for a Micro Four Thirds shooter looking for a high-quality, fast, wide-angle prime. Take a look at how we got along with it.
Tamron has announced the longest all-in-one zoom lens currently available, the 18-400mm F3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD. Designed for Canon and Nikon crop-sensor cameras, the lens will be available in July.
When you're ready to step-up to full-frame from an entry-level or midrange camera, the choices can be overwhelming. Find out which models came out on top in our $1200-2000 enthusiast ILC roundup.
Just a guy wearing a VR headset, smashing invisible Goombas in Central Park.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured this gorgeous aerial photo of the Martian landscape. And if you look really close, you can actually see the Mars Curiosity rover in the very middle.
The city of Laguna Beach, California has provided some clarification around the kinds of photography permits it offers.
Later this year, a VR180 camera will be Joining Yi's Halo and 360 VR cameras, which will offer stereo 3D capture, yet be as easy to use and compact as a 2D camera.
Caltech researchers have developed an 'optical phased array' chip that uses time delays instead of a lens to focus the incoming light.
Pricing and shipping have finally been revealed for two highly anticipated lenses from Sigma, announced in February.
These macro photos of clouds of paint billowing through clear water might look like high-quality CGI, but they're real photographs. And photographer Alberto Seveso told us how they were made.
Facebook is testing a feature that prevents people from saving, sharing, or even taking a screenshot of your profile picture.
We've reshot the Sony a9 in our studio. The short story: it's sharper! The long story... well you can read it all here.
The collection will be officially launched during the Europeana Transcribathon Campus Berlin 2017 crowdsourcing event which will be held on 22 and 23 June at the Berlin State Library.
Light gives us some insight into the preparations for the launch of the pre-order shipments of its much anticipated L16 multi-lens camera.
OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has confirmed in a tweet that the second lens on the back of the OnePlus 5 uses a 1.6x optical zoom and that digital zoom is used to reach the claimed 2x zoom factor.
Fujifilm recently unveiled the second in its series of affordable cine lenses, the MK50-135mm T2.9. We got our hands on it for a couple days and took it for a spin.
Leica's first attempt at an M-series digital rangefinder was rough around the edges, but set a pattern for all of the cameras that came after it. In this week's Throwback Thursday article, Barney remembers the M8.
No stranger to extreme situations, legendary climber and filmmaker Jimmy Chin talks to Outside Magazine about his career, and the challenge of filming Alex Honnold's rope-free solo climb of El Capitain.
A company backed by Android co-founder Andy Rubin is attempting to make video conferencing less terrible.
Rangefinder magazine asked five professional portrait and wedding photographers about posting on Instagram; no surprise, they got five different answers.
This captivating stop motion film was created by stripping away one layer of wood at a time. It's hard to look away.
It will enable users to simulate the presence of the sun, moon and Milky Way and see how they interact with an area's topography.
Since its introduction in November last year Instagram's live streaming feature has been used by millions, but videos could not be archived for watching at a later stage. A new update has now added the capability.
CopyTrack's study also found that the second most-stolen image is a woman wearing painted jeans. That's apparently a thing.