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Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark
  
 
Tariq Gibran
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p.3 #1 · p.3 #1 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


douglasf13 wrote:
I'm not sure that it is certain, yet. The D600 and RX1 score very similarly in terms of DR and SNR, too, despite the higher SMI of the RX1. I don't think SMI is necessarily a good indicator. Like theSuede has mentioned, the Leica M9 also handles color more like MFDB (Iliah says the same,) and it only has an SMI of 76.

I doubt that Sony has stopped using their usual CFA design. The new sensor is probably just a little more efficient than the older D800 sensor, so that could be equalizing the SNR and DR.


...and in that link I provided to the previous discussion (which many here took part in), theSuede did mention something about Sony being a special case (in a good way with regard to color accuracy).



Oct 31, 2013 at 10:18 PM
zhangyue
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p.3 #2 · p.3 #2 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


No, I won't take SMI score as a bible. I sure will take this a grain of salt. but seems the quote you referred imply that score is not irrelevant.

But a camera with SMI80 will almost certainly be a lot better than the camera with SMI60."

It is a good indication. and coincidentally, the camera having high SMI score also happen to have a good reputation of color reproduction: A900, 1DsIII etc.. and camera has low SMI score also happen to have many complain, ignore the list here

Conceptually, this isn't that hard to understand as once the signal is captured in raw, whatever profile you choose just have to boost different color channel to target color, the more gain you have to applied, the harder to achieve target color. Especially for something involve very subtle tonality change such as skin tone....

The same terminology can also be used in audio world, that mixer (boost/attenuate different frequency signal) can never achieve the sound as good as the time of recording it right.

If I have to choose RX1 now, I will choose regular version just based on this 'huge' SMI score difference than little sharpness gain.



Oct 31, 2013 at 10:48 PM
chez
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p.3 #3 · p.3 #3 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


naturephoto1 wrote:
I handled the camera at PhotoPlus and I found that the camera with the grip handled and balanced quite well.

Rich


Who cares how it balanced and handled...did it match your shoes?



Oct 31, 2013 at 10:54 PM
douglasf13
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p.3 #4 · p.3 #4 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


zhangyue wrote:
No, I won't take SMI score as a bible. I sure will take this a grain of salt. but seems the quote you referred imply that score is not irrelevant.

But a camera with SMI80 will almost certainly be a lot better than the camera with SMI60."

It is a good indication. and coincidentally, the camera having high SMI score also happen to have a good reputation of color reproduction: A900, 1DsIII etc.. and camera has low SMI score also happen to have many complain, ignore the list here

Conceptually, this isn't that hard to understand as once the signal is captured
...Show more

The SMI difference between the RX1 and RX1R is only 5 points, so I'm not sure it matters much. As quoted on the DXO website, "In practice, the SMI for DSLRs ranges between 75 and 85, and is not very discriminating. It is different for low-end cameras (such as camera phones), which typically have a SMI of about 40. For this reason, we give this measurement as an indication but do not integrate it in DxO Mark."

Since the A7R scored close to the RX1R, with a 78, I wonder if the A7 will be closer to 84, like the RX1? Is it possible that some kind of artifacts from removing the AA filter are causing this discrepancy?



Oct 31, 2013 at 10:56 PM
RustyBug
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p.3 #5 · p.3 #5 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


chez wrote:
Who cares how it balanced and handled...did it match your shoes?



I'm waiting for the gold-plated version ... it'll go with everything.

To see or to be seen ... that is the question.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:00 PM
Tariq Gibran
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p.3 #6 · p.3 #6 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


zhangyue wrote:
No, I won't take SMI score as a bible. I sure will take this a grain of salt. but seems the quote you referred imply that score is not irrelevant.

But a camera with SMI80 will almost certainly be a lot better than the camera with SMI60."

It is a good indication. and coincidentally, the camera having high SMI score also happen to have a good reputation of color reproduction: A900, 1DsIII etc.. and camera has low SMI score also happen to have many complain, ignore the list here

Conceptually, this isn't that hard to understand as once the signal is captured
...Show more

Yes, but which cameras are we discussing which have a SMI difference of 20 points? That is where we know the SMI matters according to theSuede. If we are talking only 5 points, he specifically makes the case that we don't know if the camera with the higher score actually has more accurate color than the one with the lower score or vice versa. Thus, SMI is practically irrelevant because we are not comparing cameras with a huge SMI delta..at least that's what I take from what theSuede wrote - SMI can't reliably be used as an accurate indicator or color accuracy when the delta between the cameras in question is low (which seems to be the case with almost all current cameras).


Edited on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:10 PM · View previous versions



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:08 PM
skibum5
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p.3 #7 · p.3 #7 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Tariq Gibran wrote:
So, if we take the RX1 (84/81) and RX1r (79/75) example I cited, your conclusion is that these two cameras are using a completely different CFA which is why they differ? I suspect there is more to it, perhaps including the AA filter as well as software tuning. Anyway, I bet the A7 with it's AA filter will likely have a better measurement. Incidentally, the Leica M 240 only scores 75/71 but I really don't hear folks talking about how bad Leica color is. I suspect the delta has to be pretty large to really matter. Per DxO:
"In practice,
...Show more


Maybe it is due to the AA filter removal, considering these are bayer sensors I could imagine ways that might be damaging to color reproduction. Personally I think this should have had a least a weak AA filter in it, 36MP for FF isn't dense enough to get rid of the filter IMO, especially not if you have lenses that can handle it well. The lack of the AA filter is the one downside to how they made the sensor IMO. A weak AA filter in it would've been better I think and just in general too.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:08 PM
Mescalamba
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p.3 #8 · p.3 #8 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


1D/s MK3 has markedly better and "alive" colors than most of things from Canon. Almost all "past" Canon cameras (including even simple old 5Dc) had better looking colors than today ones. And almost all had better SMI.

50D, despite its rather poor SNR characteristic is very good when it comes to colors (bit harder to take advantage of that exactly due that poorer SNR).

Nikon D300, D2Xs, D700 .. all not only "in theory" but in practice provide better colors than newer "better" models. All higher SMIs.

Yea I think that there is relation between good colors (or simply colors that have good enough separation) and CFA and SMI.


Its supposedly "non-important" part of DxOmark measuring. Well, when its so non-important, why they bother with testing every camera under two different illuminants and do rather thorough color tests. Including how much is each color channel boosted (rather important thing too, for example if SNR is close to 38dB - level of relative "noise-free" image, but blue color channel is under daylight somewhere like 2.5x boost, then you have almost guaranteed problems with blue sky when it comes to noise).


I have no doubt Sony changed CFA. I had doubts when I saw pics but thought, well, crappy JPG colors, could happen (except those JPGs are not exactly crappy in other things). They did that before, A99 doesnt have colors like A900. Its closer to A850 and has slightly strange shift (which as result produce very nice skin colors, but bit less of others. Still better than Canikon today).


M9 colors are not accurate in anything. But they look nice and if you PP it a bit, it looks a bit like digital Velvia. CFA like that is both cheap and doesnt hurt SNR (which is something that Leica most likely really didnt want to worsen even further ). Why it looks bit like MFDB might be cause of CCD and it might be (thats just a guess) 16-bit ADC inside (M8 had one) with output to 14-bits. Thats one way how to make camera with cheap-ish CFA and still colors that most will like (me included, even tho they are not 100% accurate .. or more then 76% .


6D is another way to do the same. And sorry, that I offer my opinion, but those colors are bl**dy awful. Yet, people buy it and are happy with it and its results. Which sorta proves my point about colorblindness. That and/or they simply prefer different colors. I dont take it from them, if they like it.


Anyway, its not end of the world. A7r is pretty much D800E minus Nikon AF and Nikon lens mount. Plus sensor really without AA filter. Which without doubt will please a lot of their users.

For me its without A900 colors that I hoped for. Which means end of story for me. I wont post here any further.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:10 PM
skibum5
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p.3 #9 · p.3 #9 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Tariq Gibran wrote:
The measurements are really close between the M9 (76/72) and m240 (75/71) and the strict difference is inconsequential just going by this measurement alone. I think it's the case that sometimes cameras have high numbers and great color and low numbers and not so great color BUT there is not always a correlation between the two (so one can't always go by this measurement). This is probably why DXO says the measurements are not very discriminating and that they don't even use them in their overall scoring.


It's really complex, since who knows in what shades the differences occur and which shades matter more to you, etc. And one overall worse might still be better in some other shades, etc. I'd certainly bet on one with scores like 86 vs one with scores like 72 though.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:11 PM
Tariq Gibran
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p.3 #10 · p.3 #10 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


skibum5 wrote:
Maybe it is due to the AA filter removal, considering these are bayer sensors I could imagine ways that might be damaging to color reproduction. Personally I think this should have had a least a weak AA filter in it, 36MP for FF isn't dense enough to get rid of the filter IMO, especially not if you have lenses that can handle it well. The lack of the AA filter is the one downside to how they made the sensor IMO. A weak AA filter in it would've been better I think and just in general too.


Agree about the AA filter in general. I would prefer to have one. That said, it's pretty odd that in all the samples out there, moire has not really shown up yet. I'm wondering why that is.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:13 PM
 

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skibum5
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p.3 #11 · p.3 #11 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Tariq Gibran wrote:
So, you disagree with what theSuede writes with regard to this topic which I just quoted? A coincidence doesn't automatically lead to a correlation (your examples).


I think the 6D vs 1Ds3 is like 15 points or something though.


(and as he said a 5 point difference may mean nothing and the lower score may even do better in practice BUT it could also be meaningful and potentially even more than the small difference indicated)


Edited on Oct 31, 2013 at 11:19 PM · View previous versions



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:14 PM
Mescalamba
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p.3 #12 · p.3 #12 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


skibum5 wrote:
Maybe it is due to the AA filter removal, considering these are bayer sensors I could imagine ways that might be damaging to color reproduction. Personally I think this should have had a least a weak AA filter in it, 36MP for FF isn't dense enough to get rid of the filter IMO, especially not if you have lenses that can handle it well. The lack of the AA filter is the one downside to how they made the sensor IMO. A weak AA filter in it would've been better I think and just in general too.


If you test colors by simply measuring color patches, then being Bayer or not or having AA or not, shouldnt make a difference. In real life, it might. And I agree that 36 mpix FF without AA filter isnt best idea.. (pixel density under 16 mpix APS-C isnt enough).



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:15 PM
zhangyue
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p.3 #13 · p.3 #13 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark



Tariq Gibran wrote:
Yes, but which cameras are we discussing which have a SMI difference of 20 points? That is where we know the SMI matters according to theSuede. If we are talking only 5 points, he specifically makes the case that we don't know if the camera with the higher score actually has more accurate color than the one with the lower score or vice versa. Thus, SMI is practically irrelevant because we are not comparing cameras with a huge SMI delta..at least that's what I take from what theSuede wrote - SMI can't reliably be used as an accurate indicator
...Show more

What make 20 a magic number than 5 or 10 in score.
My 6d have grand total score of 69, which 20 below a900, so it is bad, and 5diii is 79, 10 point less than a900, so it is not bad, but now my 6d is only 10 point below 5diii, then my 6d must not bad as well

Basically, you were saying all current camera having same performance is this regard. I disagree, but I agree we should not take this number as sole indication but a good reference.
I believe 5 point between RX1 and RX1R is real and difference will be detectable for sensitive eyes. If it is profile correctable? I don't know.





Oct 31, 2013 at 11:17 PM
Tariq Gibran
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p.3 #14 · p.3 #14 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Mescalamba wrote:
1D/s MK3 has markedly better and "alive" colors than most of things from Canon. Almost all "past" Canon cameras (including even simple old 5Dc) had better looking colors than today ones. And almost all had better SMI.

50D, despite its rather poor SNR characteristic is very good when it comes to colors (bit harder to take advantage of that exactly due that poorer SNR).

Nikon D300, D2Xs, D700 .. all not only "in theory" but in practice provide better colors than newer "better" models. All higher SMIs.

Yea I think that there is relation between good colors (or simply colors that have good
...Show more

I agree the A900 has great color - still the best imo that I have seen out of a FF sensor.

BTW, sorry if I came off as antagonistic. That was not my intention at all and I think the discussion is both relevant and healthy.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:18 PM
skibum5
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p.3 #15 · p.3 #15 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Mescalamba wrote:
If you test colors by simply measuring color patches, then being Bayer or not or having AA or not, shouldnt make a difference. In real life, it might. And I agree that 36 mpix FF without AA filter isnt best idea.. (pixel density under 16 mpix APS-C isnt enough).


yeah i guess testing large patches it would easily all average out


Edited on Nov 04, 2013 at 04:44 AM · View previous versions



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:20 PM
Tariq Gibran
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p.3 #16 · p.3 #16 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


zhangyue wrote:
What make 20 a magic number than 5 or 10 in score.
My 6d have grand total score of 69, which 20 below a900, so it is bad, and 5diii is 79, 10 point less than a900, so it is not bad, but now my 6d is only 10 point below 5diii, then my 6d must not bad as well

Basically, you were saying all current camera having same performance is this regard. I disagree, but I agree we should not take this number as sole indication but a good reference.
I believe 5 point between RX1 and RX1R is
...Show more

I had no idea a 6D had such a low score. I don't know what's "magic" about 20, that was just used by theSuede as an example (probably to make the point that a huge delta is required for any sort of correlation to exist between SMI and color accuracy). So, in those examples between a 6D and A900, it probably would matter given the huge delta which is close to 20. I would still question that the 5 points alone between the RX1 and RX1r is meaningful without other information.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:27 PM
douglasf13
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p.3 #17 · p.3 #17 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


Tariq Gibran wrote:
I had no idea a 6D had such a low score. I don't know what's "magic" about 20, that was just used by theSuede as an example (probably to make the point that a huge delta is required for any sort of correlation to exist between SMI and color accuracy). So, in those examples between a 6D and A900, it probably would matter given the huge delta which is close to 20. I would still question that the 5 points alone between the RX1 and RX1r is meaningful without other information.


Agreed. I doubt anyone would be able to tell a 5 point difference in SMI. Things like raw converter profile differences would likely be much more obvious. That being said, 20 points could be a different story.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:32 PM
theSuede
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p.3 #18 · p.3 #18 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


zhangyue wrote:
What make 20 a magic number than 5 or 10 in score.
My 6d have grand total score of 69, which 20 below a900, so it is bad, and 5diii is 79, 10 point less than a900, so it is not bad, but now my 6d is only 10 point below 5diii, then my 6d must not bad as well

Basically, you were saying all current camera having same performance is this regard. I disagree, but I agree we should not take this number as sole indication but a good reference.
I believe 5 point between RX1 and RX1R is
...Show more

The magic is in "noticeable difference". I'll short that to JND from here on to abbreviate.

Your sample is a regression sample - if 90 isn't a JND from 80, and 80 isn't a JND from 70, and 70 isn't a JND from 60, and 60 isn't a JND from 50 - does that mean that 50 isn't a JND from 90 No, not really...

The thing with color is that it isn't something you can put "one number" on. That's almost impossible in theory, and definitely impossible in practice.

Two cameras can have the exact SAME score, and behave quite differently.
One may be correctable by a good profile, the other maybe not.
One may have all errors in gree-blue, the other in green-red - that'll give very different results in an image, but not in the score.

But in the metric that DxO uses, 20 is a definite "this camera will not be able to give as accurate color, even with a very good camera profile" limit.

Second that about the Sony A900. It has the most correctable [by profiling] and most pleasing [just my personal opinion] color rendition of all cameras I've tried/owned (I had the 850).
Color isn't just about hue and saturation! A color rendition is also what brightness value a color is assigned, and the balance between those three are wildly different even with almost otherwise identical sensors - as users of many similar cameras know. Even with an almost perfect camera profile, there's still some small differences left. Interactions between CFA and raw converter, interactions between noise factors before/after a profile has been applied and so on.

But a good camera profile, in good quality light (not cheap office fluorescents) will make most cameras almost unseparable by "only" doing visual inspection, for an untrained eye.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:46 PM
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p.3 #19 · p.3 #19 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


For nature, buildings and general subject matter I think the a99 and RX1 colour is significantly 'better' - my criteria are cleaner, more free from artifacts/casts, colour should change smoothly in concert with tone changes, and very clean neutral tones - than a900 output. Also they drop in much easier without much WB adjustment.

I went back and tried some a900 files with a later vsn of ACR and no, it is the cameras that improved, esp in DR. It could be an artifact of my unusual subject matter, or simply preference. I do know what people mean and a900 at base ISO is excellent, but overall in diverse use and through the ISO range it's not even close re file cleanness and reliability for colour handling.

Remember all those 200/320 ISO chats, the independent developer community seemed convinced you needed ISO 320 to get rid of red blotches? I drank that koolaid one time and really paid the price as the a900 falls away in DR and colour integrity fast with increasing ISO, several stops in fact, with a corresponding noise ramp up. The noise character was very poor also, the latest Sonys retain very nice colour within the onset of noise very nicely. And why were the shadow blotches there in the first place? No idea. Nikon did better with D3X by all accounts of others.

I also like the a7r output so far - one jpeg of a woman with a camera at a window front in particular, with very special control of shadows and colour transitioning, from the western US release. I think you will find few people prefer the older Sony FF cameras overall in these respects, and the colour will be regarded as a highlight of the a7/a7r.



Oct 31, 2013 at 11:58 PM
douglasf13
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p.3 #20 · p.3 #20 · Sony A7R sensor gets high scores from DxOMark


philip_pj wrote:
Remember all those 200/320 ISO chats, the independent developer community seemed convinced you needed ISO 320 to get rid of red blotches? I drank that koolaid one time and really paid the price as the a900 falls away in DR and colour integrity fast with increasing ISO, several stops in fact, with a corresponding noise ramp up. The noise character was very poor also, the latest Sonys retain very nice colour within the onset of noise very nicely. And why were the shadow blotches there in the first place? No idea. Nikon did better with D3X by all accounts of
...Show more

It was always the contention by Iliah and Andrey that ISO 320 improved shadow blotches while slightly reducing DR. Like many others, I did tons of tests with different converters and discovered what they were talking about. The trade off decision should have been dependent on the scene, though.



Nov 01, 2013 at 12:04 AM
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