Yes, I'm serious. Moon shots.
I like shooting the moon with these long zoom compact cameras. I shoot from tripod and I leave their IS systems active, since the tripod is nothing special ... an old aluminum Velbon. I release with a 10 second self-timer to ensure that there are no residual vibrations to steal sharpness.
I was going to just test the Panny, but then I thought why not make it a bake off?
I shot the F70EXR in 5mp mode first. DR400 and all ... of course, since the lenses are fairly short, only getting to 300mm ... at best about a 6x equivalent ... these are 100% crops. You are seeing the pixels exactly as they appear on the sensor.
The processing used is:
1) ACR for cropping, white balance, tone adjustment and capture sharpening.
2) Topaz Adjust for details.
3) Noel Carboni dSLR tools Clarify Action for local contrast.
4) Output sharpening with PKSharpener.
Since these sensor are really tiny, we do end up with some artifacts. But all in all, there is amazing surface detail here.
Back to the F70EXR 5mp mode:
Now the F70EXR 10mp mode in DR100.
Not too bad ... aided by the slight increase in size. It's disconcerting how little the image grows for a doubling of resolution ... isn't it ... Edit: these smaller shots are misleading ... the 5mp crop is smaller, so it remains larger in this smaller form. If you can follow that logic, you are ready for your PhD dissertation :-).
But if you look very carefully at the areas between major craters, you will see that some of the smaller craters are simply missing in the HR image. Likely mistaken for noise by the jpeg engine. Still, a nice performance.
And finally the Panny at 10mp ...
I think the Panny here is the clear winner. A few more artifacts perhaps ... but definitely more detail. This is consistent with the lens quality differences. I'm impressed.
Edit: Commenter Danny Sees sent me some moon shots from his Sony HX1, and I must admit that they are breathtakingly good for a small sensor cam hand held. I took the liberty of applying my processing to the third one he sent, which was a one-handed shot!, and it came out amazingly well. This very large image is NOT a 100% crop ... that would have been too large. This thing's 20x zoom is a surprisingly sharp telescope.
Bravo Danny, and bravo Sony.