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Re: Sony tells DSLR shooters they're idiots

Anthony Polson
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Eric Stevens <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>On Thu, 06 Dec 2012 20:55:34 -0500, Removed) wrote:
>>On Thu, 06 Dec 2012 13:42:24 -0600, David Dyer-Bennet <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>(E-Mail Removed) writes:
>>>> On Wed, 05 Dec 2012 00:48:41 -0600, David Dyer-Bennet <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>>>(E-Mail Removed) writes:
>>>>>> On Tue, 4 Dec 2012 23:45:42 +0100, Alfred Molon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>>>>>In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, David Dyer-Bennet says...
>>>>>>>> Yeah, right. Ask anybody these days. Nikon is making the best DSLRs in
>>>>>>>> the market.
>>>>>>>If they are the best, why is there is 3/4 stop exposure mistake?
>>>>>> Exposure mistakes are in the eye of the beholder... the camera thinks
>>>>>> it did fine, but it doesn't have an incident light meter, which is the
>>>>>> only way to get perfection.
>>>>>Incident metering is by no means perfect. In fact, it's less accurate
>>>>>than reflected metering done carefully; it's a quick-and-dirty kludge
>>>>>that's useful in some situations, especially with low-contrast lighting,
>>>>>plus it's useful in the studio when reading the effects of individual
>>>>>lights as you set things up. I do still have my separate light meter
>>>>>(including flash meter), but I see no reason to use it these days.
>>>> Of course, the metering method must be tempered by the knowledge and
>>>> experience of the photographer, but the incident meter tells you how
>>>> much light is available, the camera only tells you the average of what
>>>> is reflected, which means nothing in a noon hour snow scene!
>>>It means a lot -- it gives you the vital data you need to know that
>>>you've avoided blowing out the highlights! With incident, you can apply
>>>experienced intelligence to account for that, but you're doing it by
>>>inference, whereas a reflected reading of a highlight tells you what the
>>>actual brightness is. The reflected light is what the film actually

>>Actually, the camera measures the average of the reflected light,

>Nikons have measured the pattern of brightness and deduced the nature
>of the subject since the late 1980s. I remember establishing that the
>F801s could determine the correct exposure for snow but we were
>puzzled as to how it did it. We were told that it had a database of
>45,000 pictures from which it worked.

Nikon's Matrix Metering sounded a lot more sophisticated than it was.
It made its first appearance in the Nikon FA of 1983, although it
wasn't called Matrix at that time. It was indeed based on a database
of patterns of illumination derived from thousands of shots that were
chosen to be representative of various genres.

The biggest problem with Matrix Metering was that it was oversold.
People were told just to trust it. They weren't told how it worked,
in what situations it didn't and how to compensate in the latter case
to obtain a "correct" exposure. The result was that it had fatal
weaknesses that users did not know how to correct or allow for.

The second biggest problem was that it only gave one EV (exposure
value) regardless of the type of film in use. It was calibrated on
the basis of using an average-to-good quality negative film such as
Kodak Gold or Fuji Reala. The EV suited average-to-good negative film
but it was often a poor choice for slide film whose narrow dynamic
range made it particularly difficult to meter.

The same was true of early digital sensors. However, the best of the
latest crop of sensors give up to 14 stops of dynamic range; this
compares more closely with negative than slide film.

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