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My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.
  
 
Nathan Padgett
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


One of the features I was and still am really exited about is the silent shooting mode. I thought I would share some of my initial reactions to it.

Let's assume you know nothing about the silent mode on the D850. Here is what you should know.

1. It's 100% silent. Not a BS quite mode.
2. You have to use it in live view only.
3. You can still autofocus, but it's limited to the little red box. No fancy af modes. The good news you can touch anywhere on the LCD screen and it will focus and shoot. In manual focus mode, a touch of the LCD instantly shoots.
4. Focus peaking is available, but only if you lens is in manual mode!
5. You can punch in with the magnify button to help you focus critically.
6. It also has a split zoom view......where you can split the back LCD into two boxes that are zoomed onto different areas of the frame. Hope that makes sense. I guess if you have to critically focus on two things that are not right next to each other this would be a handy feature. Hit the "i" button while in live view to bring up some options.
7. You have a couple of shooting modes. SL1 takes full res 45 megapixel photos up to 6 fps. SL2 shoots DX mode and can shoot up to 30 fps at 8.8 mp.

In use: Along with the tilt screen, it makes for a very versatile shooting tool. The way the live view works seems so much better in use than all the other Nikon's I've owned. Once you hit the live view button, the mirror stays up as you take your silent photos, and even as you jump in and out of menus (which is not the case in the D800/D810/D4). Does the D500 do the same? No more clucking of the mirror going up and down over and over. This really makes things feel more fluid and enjoyable for some reason. It also keeps your shutter count down. One question this brings up though.... does taking a silent photo add to your shutter count?

TURN OFF IMAGE REVIEW! Unless your taking one shot only of static things, I highly recommend not to have image review on. If it's on, as soon as you shoot, would be greeted with the shot you just took and you'll be missing moments of whatever is happening. You must also not forget that your exposure setting is not what you are looking at in the live views LCD. If you can change this, someone let me know. EDIT: You can in fact see what the exposure will look like by pressing the OK button. You can easily toggle back and forth. Nice!

As a back AF button focus user, it's not always ergonomically easy to use the AF button while say your camera is ground level and your looking down. I recommend setting a custom settings user bank or having the AF activation (A8) in your quick menu for easy access for the times you do choose to use live view to shoot.

Finally, keep your shooting technique in mind. You no longer are using your eye/head as a third point of contact. Your shooting a high megapixel camera and if your using the live view without a tripod it's going to be easy to see motion blur.

So far I am really enjoying the new silent mode feature and think it will be very handy for multiple purposes. I haven't noticed or tested for any negative effects of the electronic shutter (such as rolling shutter) in my limited use so far.







Edited on Sep 13, 2017 at 11:17 PM · View previous versions



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:03 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Could you do me a big favor? Can you shoot the same scene 6 stops underexposed, first with the silent mode and then in regular mode in LV, and then make both raws available? I would like to measure if there's a read noise (dynamic range) penalty with the D850's implementation of an electronic shutter. Thanks!


Sep 13, 2017 at 07:06 PM
LeeSimms
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


I use LV touch focus+shoot on Canons often and it's an awesome feature — the fact that it's silent is a paradigm shift and even better than awesome.

I like my details/decor to be dead-on centered and sometimes that demands a camera position that you couldn't hold traditionally. With LV and touch+shoot, all good things are possible.

I get giddy when I think of the observational possibility with totally silent shooting. A most desirable feature.

Edited on Sep 13, 2017 at 07:34 PM · View previous versions



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:34 PM
Nathan Padgett
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


snapsy wrote:
Could you do me a big favor? Can you shoot the same scene 6 stops underexposed, first with the silent mode and then in regular mode in LV, and then make both raws available? I would like to measure if there's a read noise (dynamic range) penalty with the D850's implementation of an electronic shutter. Thanks!


Here ya go: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/1h3zi6qrndjr8q9/AACQOb0mXWSmyJiinBIdmbrua?dl=0

One thing I instantly noticed though.....I had the camera on a tripod, but the image seems to stretch/distort a little on one of them! Perhaps I just bumped the tripod or something, but I don't think I did.

Looking at the DNG's in Lightroom, I don't seem to notice any noise or dynamic range differences. By the way, the first one is the silent shutter.


Edited on Sep 13, 2017 at 07:43 PM · View previous versions



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:34 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Thanks for the raws! I was going to ask which is which but the noise performance looks identical so it doesn't matter Here's a 100% crop of both images pushed +5EV, with all noise reduction turned off (ACR):

D850 Electronic vs Normal Shutter, ISO 800, Pushed +5EV



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:42 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Nathan Padgett wrote:
Here ya go: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/1h3zi6qrndjr8q9/AACQOb0mXWSmyJiinBIdmbrua?dl=0

One thing I instantly noticed though.....I had the camera on a tripod, but the image seems to stretch/distort a little on one of them! Perhaps I just bumped the tripod or something, but I don't think I did.

Looking at the DNG's in Lightroom, I don't seem to notice any noise or dynamic range differences. By the way, the first one is the silent shutter.


I just noticed these are ISO 800 images. Any chance you can do the same with ISO 64 whenever you get a chance? This will help landscape shooters who want to use the electronic shutter for minimum vibration, to make sure there's no DR penalty.



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:46 PM
Stoffer
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Nathan Padgett wrote:
Here ya go: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/1h3zi6qrndjr8q9/AACQOb0mXWSmyJiinBIdmbrua?dl=0

Looking at the DNG's in Lightroom, I don't seem to notice any noise or dynamic range differences. By the way, the first one is the silent shutter.


---------------------------------------------

snapsy wrote:
Thanks for the raws! I was going to ask which is which but the noise performance looks identical so it doesn't matter Here's a 100% crop of both images pushed +5EV, with all noise reduction turned off (ACR):

D850 Electronic vs Normal Shutter, ISO 800, Pushed +5EV


Cool, thanks for doing this to both of you. Is it possible to do that same test at ISO 64? Just to be sure.



Sep 13, 2017 at 07:48 PM
Stoffer
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Aaaah, just saw snapsy had the same thought about ISO 64.


Sep 13, 2017 at 07:49 PM
Nathan Padgett
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Update at ISO 64 uploading now. Same dropbox folder. You guys owe me
FYI the file ending in 54 is regular live view and 55 is silent mode.



Sep 13, 2017 at 08:02 PM
Nathan Padgett
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


They look identical again. And wow it's clean for cranking it 5 stops!

EDIT: Looking closer...noise and DR look the same, but with the shutter speed set at 1/25th I do notice the silent shutter shot is sharper! Look at the button for the pop up flash in the photo.

Edited on Sep 13, 2017 at 08:12 PM · View previous versions



Sep 13, 2017 at 08:08 PM
 

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FrancisK7
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


When I got the camera first thing I tried is turn the wheel to Q and try this new quiet mode only to find it was the same Non-Quiet mode as my D810.

Then I tried the LV and was like woah!

That will be very useful for concerts. A capella singing contest with zero disturbance coming from the shutter. Very neat.



Sep 13, 2017 at 08:09 PM
zhangyue
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


I expect there might be slightly penalty because of electronic shutter but you will not see Nikon drop 2 bit like some other "smart" engineers do.


Sep 13, 2017 at 08:11 PM
Nathan Padgett
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


ISO 64 screen shot


Sep 13, 2017 at 08:15 PM
chez
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


FrancisK7 wrote:
When I got the camera first thing I tried is turn the wheel to Q and try this new quiet mode only to find it was the same Non-Quiet mode as my D810.

Then I tried the LV and was like woah!

That will be very useful for concerts. A capella singing contest with zero disturbance coming from the shutter. Very neat.


But do you have to hold the camera away from your body to use LV? If so, I find this extremely limiting since shooting with the camera away from your body is very unstable and tiring...especially if there is a hefty lend on the camera.

The only times I use LV is off a tripod when I'm shooting landscapes. Shooting concerts or street...it's viewfinder all the way. Many times there is no room to hold the camera away from the body.



Sep 13, 2017 at 08:16 PM
protikh
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


I was expecting to see some penalty in IQ with silent shutter, but could not find any based on those 2 images.


Sep 13, 2017 at 08:24 PM
Stoffer
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Nathan Padgett wrote:
They look identical again. And wow it's clean for cranking it 5 stops!

EDIT: Looking closer...noise and DR look the same, but with the shutter speed set at 1/25th I do notice the silent shutter shot is sharper! Look at the button for the pop up flash in the photo.


Great news! I'm not at my computer right now, but looking forward to checking those files out at a later time. Thanks for doing this, much appreciated.



Sep 13, 2017 at 08:26 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Nathan Padgett wrote:
They look identical again. And wow it's clean for cranking it 5 stops!

EDIT: Looking closer...noise and DR look the same, but with the shutter speed set at 1/25th I do notice the silent shutter shot is sharper! Look at the button for the pop up flash in the photo.


Agreed, noise looks identical, thanks again! Regarding the sharpness, did you use timer and/or exposure delay mode for these?



Sep 13, 2017 at 09:07 PM
mb126
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


Curious how this would behave with cycling lights? A7r2 had issues with slow readout speed due to the high resolution.


Sep 13, 2017 at 09:31 PM
CanadaMark
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


One of the two main reasons Nikon used BSI was specifically so that there would be no impact on light collection with the implementation of the electronic shutter. This confirms it, but one would not have expected it to be worse. Great feature to have.


Nathan Padgett wrote:
They look identical again. And wow it's clean for cranking it 5 stops!

Even 6 stops is extremely impressive, and there is no visible banding - you can play around with a comparison tool here:

https://www.dpreview.com/reviews/image-comparison/fullscreen?attr144_0=nikon_d850&attr144_1=canon_eos5dmkiv&attr144_2=canon_eos6dmkii&attr144_3=nikon_d500&attr146_0=64_7&attr146_1=100_6&attr146_2=100_6&attr146_3=100_6&normalization=compare&widget=552&x=-0.14816251566281569&y=-1.111055900621118

What they have managed to retain while increasing the resolution almost 30% from the D810 is really quite something.



Sep 13, 2017 at 09:31 PM
snapsy
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · My thoughts on the D850's silent mode.


CanadaMark wrote:
One of the two main reasons Nikon used BSI was specifically so that there would be no impact on light collection with the implementation of the electronic shutter. This confirms it, but one would not have expected it to be worse. Great feature to have.

The A7rII uses a BSI sensor and has a read noise penalty for its electronic shutter. It's likely a function of how the ADCs are configured for that mode.



Sep 13, 2017 at 09:50 PM
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