Tuesday, April 13, 2010

F80EXR in the real world … part 1

Ok, time to stop testing the F80EXR and start using it. Well, as much as I can stand anyway. I figure I might as well just carry it for a while and see what it does. I’ll try to take the F70EXR now and again too just to make sure we get a real world comparison.

So …. at the restaurant last night with the boys. Our quite late actually … dinner at 9pm. Which means incandescent light only. Rather orangey … just what the doctor ordered for the poor little F80 :-)

I started with a shot of Nick relaxing. I used flash because I simply know that 1600 ISO in dark lighting is going to suck something huge.


I set white balance on the inside of the cup while processing this shot. You can see that the shoes are looking a little blueish … this worries me a bit, as it means that the white balance (WB) algorithms are a bit screwy in general, not just for custom white balance. Or that the blue channel poisons everything it touches.

Anyway … I shot a closer image that turned out fine. I adjusted contrast on this shot, though.


The camera chooses 800 when the flash is selected, and that seems to work pretty well, especially when you get close.

Next, to shoot some of Jon.


Well … the top of his head has turned to mush. No real detail there … but the F70 might not have resolved it either. Otherwise, the image is ok.

Then I went closer …


That’s straight from the cam, although I let ACR take the saturation down a bit. Fuji is *far* too enthusiastic to boost saturation with the F80 … exactly the wrong move when adding pixels.

Here’s what that eye looks like:


Well … the white balance seems rather schizophrenic … doesn’t it? The shadow below the eye is a very warm color, and the shadows near the nose and at the corner of the eye are almost gray, indicating strong blue channel contribution … again. Also top left corner.

This kind of random color variation makes life tough. This is how I would process this image to tame the issue a bit:


I don’t mind that too much. But it’s an acquired taste … some will dislike the washed out look.

And speaking of that, here’s an image Nick doesn’t like much … as it too is very bright. I chose this presentation to mitigate the 1600 ISO issues, although I must say that the camera was moderately well behaved on this shot outside:


So … in the real world it did ok. Flash works well enough, noise is not terrible with 800 ISO flash image, and outdoor images are not too bad at all. More to come.

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