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7 MP still more noisy than 5 MP on mid-range cameras?

 
 
Monkee
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      07-30-2006

"ASAAR" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...

> But wasn't the FZ30's 5mp predecessor also noisier than its peers
> from other manufacturers? People quickly learn to live with
> their camera's limitations, so it's possible than many Panasonic
> owners simply avoid taking pictures in the lower light situations
> that would result in noticeably greater amounts of noise. Amounts
> that even NeatImage might not be capable of adequately cleaning up.


This seems to be a topic of great debate even among owners - a popular
opinion is that their noise reduction isn't as good as some other
manufacturers, but as a trade off for this you actually get sharper more
detailed images..... the 'improvement' in noise seen in the latest fz-50
sample images seem to point to this being true as the FZ50 uses a 10MP
sensor yet manages to look like it has less noise than the 8MP FZ-30 (but
possibly at the expense of detail - the FZ50 images seem to have a much
stronger watercolour effect when viewed at 100% than the FZ30)


 
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Paul Allen
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      07-30-2006
On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 13:01:53 -0400
ASAAR <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 09:28:21 -0700, Paul Allen wrote:
>
> > I see some noise in some shots from my new FZ30. If I were
> > to print them at 200dpi (16x12 inches), I think I would see the
> > noise in the prints. (But, NeatImage cleans it up very nicely.) I
> > almost never make prints and have never in my life made a print
> > that large. It is simply irrelevant to me that my camera has a bit
> > more noise than its 5MP predecessor.

>
> But wasn't the FZ30's 5mp predecessor also noisier than its peers
> from other manufacturers?


Dunno. I paid close attention to Panasonic from the introduction of the
FZ10 on. I didn't start hearing any complaints about noise until people
started getting their hands on the FZ30.

> People quickly learn to live with
> their camera's limitations, so it's possible than many Panasonic
> owners simply avoid taking pictures in the lower light situations
> that would result in noticeably greater amounts of noise. Amounts
> that even NeatImage might not be capable of adequately cleaning up.


That's certainly the case with me. My old Oly C700 was terrible in
low light, mainly because of its small sensor. The FZ30 is light years
better in many ways, but it has similar low-light characteristics.
If I really needed good low-light performance and was willing to
put up with the extra cost, bulk, and weight, I'd have bought a DSLR.

> > It might be relevant to Susan, depending on what
> > she wants to do with her images.

>
> True, but even if she'd want to use her images in ways that ways
> that would occasionally benefit from a more noise free camera,
> cameras such as the FZ30 can provide other advantages that would
> more than make up for the greater noise levels.


Well said. Perfection is illusive, so I settled on a camera with
sufficient advantages that I can live with its disadvantages. It
may turn out that buying the FZ30 just at the end of its product
cycle was a bad move. I'm eagerly awaiting independent reviews of
the FZ50, but will probably not be changing horses anytime soon.
(My finance director says this camera has to hold me for a good
long while.)

Paul Allen
 
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Paul Allen
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      07-30-2006
On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 16:42:05 GMT
AZ Nomad <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 09:28:21 -0700, Paul Allen
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
> >Now, back to the question of whether the noise matters. In my view,
> >it only matters if it will be visible in your intended use of the
> >image. I see some noise in some shots from my new FZ30. If I were
> >to print them at 200dpi (16x12 inches), I think I would see the noise
> >in the prints. (But, NeatImage cleans it up very nicely.) I almost
> >never make prints and have never in my life made a print that
> >large. It is simply irrelevant to me that my camera has a bit more
> >noise than its 5MP predecessor. It might be relevant to Susan,
> >depending on what she wants to do with her images.

>
> I have an olympus stylus c710 and it has an ISO setting. The picture
> only gets really noisy on the iso100 setting. IIRC, the camera will
> automatically select iso100 in low light conditions. Given enough
> light, it'll use a higher iso setting and generate pictures without
> visible noise.


Hmmm... That's interesting. Noise levels pretty universally increase
with the ISO setting. Perhaps the C710's noise-reduction doesn't
kick in until you boost the ISO above 100, so it appears noisier at
the lowest setting?

My old Oly C700 had tolerable image noise at ISO 100, and the noise
went from tolerable to impossible as the sensitivity went up. I've
got about 10,000 images from that camera in my archives, but I haven't
powered it on since my FZ30 arrived.

Paul Allen

 
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AZ Nomad
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      07-30-2006
On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 14:41:21 -0700, Paul Allen <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:


>On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 16:42:05 GMT
>AZ Nomad <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:


>> On Sun, 30 Jul 2006 09:28:21 -0700, Paul Allen
>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>> >Now, back to the question of whether the noise matters. In my view,
>> >it only matters if it will be visible in your intended use of the
>> >image. I see some noise in some shots from my new FZ30. If I were
>> >to print them at 200dpi (16x12 inches), I think I would see the noise
>> >in the prints. (But, NeatImage cleans it up very nicely.) I almost
>> >never make prints and have never in my life made a print that
>> >large. It is simply irrelevant to me that my camera has a bit more
>> >noise than its 5MP predecessor. It might be relevant to Susan,
>> >depending on what she wants to do with her images.

>>
>> I have an olympus stylus c710 and it has an ISO setting. The picture
>> only gets really noisy on the iso100 setting. IIRC, the camera will
>> automatically select iso100 in low light conditions. Given enough
>> light, it'll use a higher iso setting and generate pictures without
>> visible noise.


>Hmmm... That's interesting. Noise levels pretty universally increase
>with the ISO setting. Perhaps the C710's noise-reduction doesn't
>kick in until you boost the ISO above 100, so it appears noisier at
>the lowest setting?


I just shot some test shots and I had it exactly wrong. The higher the iso,
the more the noise. But back to what I was attempting to say: the noise on
it's 7MP sensor is only a problem at some iso settings (higher).
 
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Kevin McMurtrie
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      07-31-2006
In article <Xns98107746B470DD5E712@127.0.0.1>,
Susan P <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> Someone here said that 7 MP cameras are likely to have more noise in the
> picture than a 5MP camera.
>
> That was a while ago just as 7MP cameras were appearing on the lower
> mid-range cameras.
>
> Is this still true or have manufacturers started to compromise on the
> quality of their 5MP cameras such that 7MP is definitely less noisy and
> better now.
>
> I think I would like to get a 5MP low to mid range camera (smaller
> storage size for picture too) but I don't want to go against the trend
> in the marketplace because I will probably find there is now nothing
> being marketed for my sort of needs!
>
> I do not expect to print anything larger than an 8 x 10 and that would
> be exceptional.


It depends on the sensor design more than anything else. Regardless of
megapixels, you'll find sensors that produce anywhere from 7 to 10 bits
of clean data.
 
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