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Archive 2011 · 7D noise issue
  
 
eskimochaos
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · 7D noise issue


The blue channel noise at ISO 400 was disgusting, IMO. I quickly sold it.


Dec 11, 2011 at 01:20 PM
Imagemaster
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · 7D noise issue


I have to chuckle when people complain about noise when they are not prepared to do a little PP to remove it, and when it is really only noticeable when viewed on a computer screen. I can have 16x20 prints made from these shots with "noticeable noise" and it virtually disappears from the prints. And never have I had someone say, "That print looks noisy.".

On some images, I have even had to apply a slight blur so the 16x20 print would look better.

A little more NR applied for those who thought 1 & 3 were too noisy:







#1 re-done







#3 re-done




Dec 11, 2011 at 05:51 PM
Ernie King
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · 7D noise issue


AbramG wrote:
I know this couldn't be the case for everyone, but when I had a 7D the noise was so bad that I was convinced there was a legitimate issue. ISO 100 looked as grainy as 3200, it was clearly noticeable. Canon agreed and they replaced the sensor in that camera, which dramatically improved the quality. At least to a level that I felt was appropriate for the density of the sensor.


+1



Dec 11, 2011 at 06:06 PM
Gochugogi
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · 7D noise issue


Imagemaster wrote:
I have to chuckle when people complain about noise when they are not prepared to do a little PP to remove it, and when it is really only noticeable when viewed on a computer screen. I can have 16x20 prints made from these shots with "noticeable noise" and it virtually disappears from the prints. And never have I had someone say, "That print looks noisy.".

On some images, I have even had to apply a slight blur so the 16x20 print would look better.

A little more NR applied for those who thought 1 & 3 were too noisy:



Great photos! I agree, much of the noise apparent on screen seem to disappear or reduce when printed. However--save for OF like me--most modern humans never print and view everything on phone and computer screens. I'm running out of room for prints at home and office but I know serious photogs without a single print on their walls.

Also, those of us that shot film are probably more tolerant of noise in defocused backgrounds and skies. I prefer a wee bit of grainy texture in my images over perfectly smooth and noiseless.



Dec 11, 2011 at 06:20 PM
RobertLynn
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · 7D noise issue


BrianO wrote:
I found the following posts helpful:





I found the following posts not only not helpful, but condescending and inflammatory:


It's not limited to this thread. RobertLynn = [Hide Me]



I don't really care how you find my post, or myself. The 7D isn't the end all be all camera, but it does what it does, very, very well. If you take offense to a post, on a piece of equipment that I happen to have a wealth of experience with, that's fine. Don't try and turn this into something it's not though. You're trying to portray me as a "bad guy" that is above other people, and just looking to start trouble.

That's not what I'm doing, or who I am. There's far better and far worse photographers than myself who've gotten much better results than me (and it shows in this thread) with that camera. Many people have shown what it's capable of.

For a sensor that's horrible at any iso, people have been putting out excellent work, both in print and in web images. If that's "inflammatory" and "condescending" to you, I'd hate to see how you react when someone says something truly negative.

I've seen the idiocracy spewed forth about this camera, and it directly conflicts with personal, real life, professional use of the equipment. It directly conflicts with the images that photographers who've forgotten more than I know, have posted.

Perhaps you've got a bone to pick with me still over me thinking that adding another cybersync to a piece of velcro to a flash meter is dumping money into a problem that needs no solution. Perhaps you used a bad 7D and are upset that some people have a good one. I don't really know. Whatever your personal problems with me are, I can assure you that they are misplaced.

The people complaining about 7D noise issues, unless there's a mechanical fault with the camera, aren't going to be happy with much any camera. I'm not saying increased noise doesn't come in higher pixel density sensors, but realistically, these people aren't going to be happy with anything but 1DX/1DIV/D3s cameras. That's the reality of it, and truthfully, if they are using those cameras, more than likely, they aren't in the 7D market anyway.


Get over yourself and quit trying to turn something that isn't inflammatory, or isn't condescending into a war or a campaign against me.



Dec 11, 2011 at 07:04 PM
RobertLynn
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · 7D noise issue


bridow wrote:
Some people work on a deadline and NR isn't an option. Plus, I don't want to spend $1450 on a camera and have to run every image through LR and export. That takes forever. I was really looking forward to using a 7D, as they are $1150 refurbished at Canon w/ loyal discount, but Iborrowed one this week and was severely disappointed. Not sure what's with all the witty banter...

I think its pretty common knowledge the 7D is bad at high iso and the 5D2 is bad at AF tracking. This is why there has been so many people that
...Show more


It's not common knowledge that the 7D is as bad at noise, as the 5D is at AF. The 5D AF issues are related to it's crippled outter points. Not it's center point, which isn't half bad. The problem is, people don't want to spend a boatload of money on fast L primes, and then spend their hard earned money on their 5D2 which has a lot of pixels...only to use center point and crop away (since focus recompose isn't a good option with f/2 and faster).

The 7D's noise "issues" if you can call it that, are at low ISO, having more noise than it should...however, this isn't a mechnical fault (except for the people who have had a legit problem and had the sensor replaced). This is a direct result of the 7D have 18MP on a 1.6x crop sensor. The higher pixel density isn't it's friend here....sort of how the 5D2 at 100% pixels looks to have more noise than a 5D1 at 100% pixels.

It's an unfair comparison, because I think we all know that the 5D2 is much better than the 5D1.

On top of that, what planet do we compare a 21MP FULL FRAME camera to an 18 MP APS-C camera in the 100% crop department?

Now, I'm not picking on you, and I work on a deadline too (I'm a stringer for many publications around here, and a few combat sports websites, so I'm not just some keyboard warrior talking shit on you just to be a jerk). A lot of times, I'm finding myself in some crappy mc-donalds hoping their wifi works, so I can get my photos to the editor in time after an event that ran late. One of those, deadline is 10, but we want the main event photographed, and the main event started at 955, oh and the closest place with wifi is 10 minutes away).

On those jobs, I take my laptop with me, import into LR. You can have default settings applied. Say you know you're going to be shooting ISO 6400 and you know you're going to need 15 or whatever points of luminance smoothing, you can have it applied during import. Export them and upload them to the boss.

The people jumping to Nikon aren't comparing a 7D to a full frame camera either. They've been comparing it to the D7000...and it's funny, because they are finding out, that while it's a fantastic camera for the money...it ain't all it's cracked up to be either. Sort of the hype got in the way of the camera.

We all know that the 7D is going to have more noise than a 5D2. We also all know that the 7D is generally going to a different event than the 5D2 (even though both cameras are sort of set up for the same market. Say you already own a 5D2, but you want a capable sports camera. Now you can pick up a 7D, have your extra batteries work with you 7D, and not have to spend a fortune on a 1D series camera. You get FF goodness, APS-C crop/reach, high ISO capabilities that are respectable on the 7D and great on the 5D2, and a backup camera, all without spending a fortune on a 1D).

You can take my comments anyway you want. It's not witty banter. It's from someoen with a lot of experience with the camera. Compared to Canon's other crop offerings, what are we going to get? 7D beats 20D, 30D, 40D, 50D in high ISO, and it has for "most" better features than the rebel and 60D which share the sensor.

It's the best answer in the Canon line up for someoen who wants sports capable AF, without buying a 1D.


I'm posting three photos. ISO 200, 3200 and 6400. Just a snap of a baby at ISO 200 with on camera flash. The only reason it's posted is to show that it's a clean file, even though the 7D doesn't have a good reputation for low ISO work.

The 3200 and 6400 were at different events. The 6400 was pushed 1 stop in post (LR just moved exposure up +1.00) and given +15 on the Lum slider. The 3200 was given just 5 points, but it was not pushed in post processing.

I find that for noise with any camera, and sharpness with any lens, has a lot to do with what you're shooting, the distance your shooting to/from, and the quality of light. I find that the 7D is much better when I get the exposure close in high ISO end on the SHADOWS. the highlights, I can miss by as much as 1-2 stops, but in the shadows, it tends to fall apart if you underexpose.






LR Lum Smooth +5

  Canon EOS 7D    EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens    70mm    f/2.8    1/500s    3200 ISO    0.0 EV  







Just an ISO 200 snap shot with a 580 on camera. Pretty clean.

  Canon EOS 7D    EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens    168mm    f/2.8    1/50s    200 ISO    0.0 EV  







ISO 6400 pushed 1 stop in post. LR Lum Smooth +15 Slight motion blur from slow shutter speed.

  Canon EOS 7D    EF24-70mm f/2.8L USM lens    30mm    f/2.8    1/400s    6400 ISO    0.0 EV  




Dec 11, 2011 at 07:16 PM
aznature
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · 7D noise issue


Fixing 7D noise in PP is no alternative to a low noise sensor
I wish the 7D had 12mp
When I view the images straight from the camera at 100% I regret buying the 7D
Then I clean the noise in PP and fall in love again with this body.
Bottom line:
Love - Hate relationship



Dec 11, 2011 at 08:07 PM
Jeff Nolten
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · 7D noise issue


Gochugogi wrote:
...most modern humans never print and view everything on phone and computer screens...


I rarely print. My method of looking at my photos is to use slide show and screen saver software on my computer or displayed on the TV for patient friends. I like the Ken Burns effect in iPhoto (when it works) which randomly zooms into an image and then slowly pans across it. This can have the same effect as pixel peeping at times. However, my image sets include scanned slides and negatives as well as digital images that aren't perfect captures but save some memory or scene I'm fond of. The digital images were captured by family on P&S and my images include several G series, 10D, 40D, and both 5Ds as well as the 7D. As Gochugogi says, even the P&S is an improvement over film. Among the XD and XXD images that I've taken there is more variation in my capture technique than there is among camera bodies.

Noise tolerance is personal taste and if the 7D doesn't cut if for you then get a 5D. If 5D frame rate and AF don't cut it for you then get a 1DIV or 1DX. If 5D crop factor doesn't cut it then buy a big white. Its only money and there are a lot of choices.

As the images above demonstrate, the 7D is capable of great photography and at refurbished prices is a lot of camera for the money. Like the G10, the 7D is a high density sensor and is noise prone at the pixel level. I shoot RAW and aggressively apply NR in the RAW converter and apply only light to moderate sharpening at .5 to 1 radius. Unlike most of my 5D images, I have to tailor the settings to each image after enlarging to %200. In Photoshop (Elements 9) I have to be careful with levels and highlight/shadow adjustment compared to the 5D. With landscapes, for example, I'll often bicubic downsample to 4620x2600 (16:9) or 4380x2740 (1.6) 12 MP images. With 5D2 sometimes I'll downsample and sometimes I'll crop to this level depending on how well things look at pixel level. Sometimes I can even crop a 7D image. At this point I'll inspect the sky regions and perhaps apply some selective NR to the sky areas. I do this with 5D images too. (The magic selector tool makes this pretty easy.) Finally, I'll see if I need to apply a little more sharpening (.3 radius, 150 level to start) perhaps with the previously selected sky region deselected (inverse select function).

I didn't mean to be quite this long winded but I thought I'd offer folks some things to try. I'm still learning how to get the most from the 7D. I'd appreciate other suggestions on how to process.

If this all sounds like too much trouble, then the camera's jpeg converter is pretty good. Maybe all the picture warrants is to be shot as a jpeg. With the G10, I'm pretty hard pressed to improve on the internal jpegs.


Edited on Dec 12, 2011 at 04:26 PM · View previous versions



Dec 11, 2011 at 08:30 PM
Imagemaster
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · 7D noise issue


aznature wrote:
Fixing 7D noise in PP is no alternative to a low noise sensor


Then pay more for a different camera.

When I view the images straight from the camera at 100%

Then don't view them at 100%.



Dec 11, 2011 at 08:32 PM
Ian.Dobinson
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · 7D noise issue


Imagemaster wrote:
Then pay more for a different camera.

Then don't view them at 100%.


+1

+1


The 100% button is probably the single worst thing ever thought up by a programmer.





Dec 11, 2011 at 08:40 PM
 

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michael kilner
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · 7D noise issue


I have been following this post with interest as I am considering buying a 7D.I have seen images posted on the web taken with this camera at supposedly the same ISOs some good some awful.I have no doubt that if used competently this camera can produce great images.One thing that does seem apparent is that if used badly this camera punishes the user because of the resolving power of the sensor.I have spoken to some users who werent happy with their results but didnt realise that their techniques and PP werent doing them any favours,a small change in their workflow made all the diffence to their images.Finally if any one is in any doubt what the camera can do,stop the waffle and have a look at Imagemasters and Robert Lynns photostreams


Dec 11, 2011 at 09:07 PM
Pixel Perfect
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · 7D noise issue


michael kilner wrote:
I have been following this post with interest as I am considering buying a 7D.I have seen images posted on the web taken with this camera at supposedly the same ISOs some good some awful.I have no doubt that if used competently this camera can produce great images.One thing that does seem apparent is that if used badly this camera punishes the user because of the resolving power of the sensor.I have spoken to some users who werent happy with their results but didnt realise that their techniques and PP werent doing them any favours,a small change in their
...Show more

Even just using LR3 won't magically turn your 7D photos noise free. The settings used for sharpening and NR on the 7D are much different for say the 5D II and 1D III.

Unfortunately LR3 has IMO introduced a flaw if you use the 2010 process and don't examine the results closely. If the detail slider is set much more than about 20, then in smooth areas of low detail, LR3 will cause almost a crazing pattern. If you revert back to the older process it disappears. But 2010 process does a much better job at NR, the old process is rubbish. Now this crazing occurs at any ISO, not just high ISO. I now tend to keep the detail slider ot no more than 10-15. Just for comparison Capture One does not have this problem although it does not have a detail slider, just a radius and threshold. LR3 does better with NR however. Note LR3 does this for every camera but is much worse for 7D I find. I can use more detail on 5D II and 1D III

So for the 7D IMO, set detail slider to very low value, the exception being a shot which is full of detail, you can then use a bit higher amount, but don't go above about 30. Also use the mask slider too, don't leave it at zero and the higher the ISO the higher you should set mask, so you don't enhance grain in featureless areas like the sky for example. If you are careful you can get very good results even at high ISO. Save most sharpening for something more sophisticated in PS such as Focalblade.



Dec 11, 2011 at 09:44 PM
Imagemaster
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · 7D noise issue


Comparisons between the 7D and 5D's have no relevance to me, since I could not have got shots this good (at this distance from the subject) with a FF body:







#1 - Pileated Woodpecker (probably had extension tube on lens)







#2 - Belted Kingfisher







#3 - female Mallard







#4 - female Northern Pintail ?




Dec 11, 2011 at 10:15 PM
Imagemaster
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · 7D noise issue


*






#5 - Peregrine Falcon







#6 - Peregrine Falcon







#7 - Northern Harrier







#8 - Belted Kingfisher with Crayfish




Dec 11, 2011 at 10:17 PM
Jeff Nolten
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · 7D noise issue


A question specific to noise processing 7D RAWs, is there any difference in the raw converters used by Photoshop CSE, Elements, and Lightroom (assuming similar or current versions)? I use PSE with the latest raw converter but see many references to LR3's noise reduction. I do most of my noise reduction in the raw converter and do touch-up on selected areas in PSE. Looking at product reviews it looks like Lightroom glosses over raw conversion and then provides enhanced noise reduction tool in the main application - perhaps without the benefit of area selection capability. Can any of you experts comment? PSE has been adequate for my camera bodies up until now, will the 7D benefit from Lightroom? Thanks.


Dec 11, 2011 at 10:28 PM
Jeff Nolten
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · 7D noise issue


Your images are great Imagemaster! Could you share your general PP strategy similar to the way Robert Lynn did? Thanks.


Dec 11, 2011 at 10:31 PM
Imagemaster
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · 7D noise issue


Jeff Nolten wrote:
Your images are great Imagemaster! Could you share your general PP strategy similar to the way Robert Lynn did? Thanks.


Thanks, Jeff.
I just adjust a few things in the RAW image in CS5. Then in the jpeg from the RAW, I sometimes apply NR (Neat Image) to the background only. Once downsized for the Web, I apply Smart Sharpen to the subject only.

Fast and easy, since I don't have time for anything more complex.

Tony



Dec 11, 2011 at 10:39 PM
snapsy
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · 7D noise issue


7D w/400mm f/5.6L @ ISO 800. Notice how little noise there is in the underexposed bokeh. Took this photo a while ago but don't recall doing any NR on it.








Dec 11, 2011 at 11:12 PM
John_T
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · 7D noise issue


Speaking of noise, on a whim after reading this thread, I shot this purely by the full moon light a few hours ago in Grindelwald and am startled by what I got, stars, but no noise.

7D+35L, 5 sec @ f/1.4 ISO 800






  Canon EOS 7D    EF35mm f/1.4L USM lens    35mm    f/1.4    5s    800 ISO    +0.7 EV  




Dec 11, 2011 at 11:14 PM
BluesWest
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p.2 #20 · p.2 #20 · 7D noise issue


I've seen the idiocracy spewed forth about this camera

+1, Robert: I agree with your sentiments completely.

Not clear to me why the 7D has been the target of so much misguided criticism, particularly with regard to noise. I've been using one since it was released and the "noise problems" are easily dealt with in post-processing. Blue sky noise, in particular, is removed in a second (literally) by using a masked NR layer.

I do agree that the photos I've seen from the 1DIV (a $4,500 camera) have superior IQ compared to photos from the 7D (a $1,500 camera). But in my opinion the IQ of the 7D is at least 80% of the 1DIV, so at 1/3 the price the 7D is a bargain!

John



Dec 11, 2011 at 11:24 PM
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