Wednesday, April 14, 2010

F80EXR in the real world … part 2

In this part, I wander about the garden extremely late in the evening with the F80EXR and the F70EXR. So late that both cameras were shooting out bright blue images straight from the camera. I fixed the white balance in ACR5.

First, I tried shooting my Forsythia, which is still blooming nicely. Very tough to get anything at 300mm, but I managed to get almost-sharp images from both cams. The F80EXR won this battle for sharpness, but that was mainly a statistical victory … it’s ahrp image came first and I did not have the patience to shoot enough images with the F70EXR to get one perfectly sharp.

Remember to click through to see the 800px versions … assuming you want to actually see what I am talking about :-)

F80EXR  1600iso, f/5.6, 1/4s, 50mm


F70EXR  1600iso, f/5.6, 1/4s, 50mm


I walked next to the barbecue and shot a macro image of the rusted out temperature gauge on the front of the stainless steel lid. I did a fairly strong WB adjustment because the steel reflected the deep blue sky so late in the evening. The F80EXR seems here to have more trouble with the rust below the gauge and with the CA around the top of the rim of the gauge, where it meets the rusted mounting ring.

F80EXR  1600iso, f3.3, 1/6s, 5mm


F70EXR  1600iso, f3.3, 1/7s, 5mm


While at the barbecue, I shot it’s name plate. Both cams did fine.

F80EXR  1600iso, f/3.3, 1/7s, 5mm


F70EXR  1600iso, f/3.3, 1/7s, 5mm


And finally, an extremely difficult test. The grill cleaner, made of stratified nylon I think … all black scene. Shot with cam resting on edge of BBQ and released by self timer. Should be crystal clear.

F70 kicks the F80’s butt here, which makes sense since it was almost dark by this point. Tons of chroma noise on the BBQ body in the F80 shot and very little detail in the actual scrubber. No contest. Note: Many people will never shoot something like this … but I like to know what my cam does in deep shadows, and this is it.

F80EXR  1600iso, f/3.3, 1/4s, 5mm


F70EXR  1600iso, f/3.3, 1/4s, 5mm


And there you have it … F80EXR mostly holds its own … but when the going gets tough, its the F70EXR that walks away with the prize.


Henrik said...

you mean f70exr on that last pic right?

Do you shoot all your pics with the P-mode M setting?

Kim Letkeman said...

Henrik: Thanks for catching that. Yes, I shoot pretty much all images as I describe in my how to shoot posts. P mode, DR400, auto iso 1600, M4:3 (although I think I'll go back to M3:2 soon.)

Henrik said...

What is the difference between 4:3 and 3:2 - is there an advantage in using one or the other?

Kim Letkeman said...

Henrik: 3:2 is just a crop from the 4:3. The width is the same and the height is truncated. No difference in image quality. It does a few things ... (1) looks like my dSLR images, and I like that; (2) avoids the deep corners, which helps at 28mm; (3) saves a wee bit of card and disk space; and (4) fits 4x6 prints perfectly.

Henrik said...

Just placed an order on a f70exr - thanks for all the good and serious testing done here Kim - It is hard to get a good "picture" of what the performance of a camera is ;-)

Kim Letkeman said...

Henrik: I'm sure you will enjoy the camera. Remember though, that it takes some practice to get the best from the cam. If HD is not something you pine for, then the F70 is a far better buy. Best of luck with it.

Lili said...

My F70EXR arrived in Dallas late Thursday night...should be getting Friday!
Looking forward to it greatly.
Kim you suggested settings work magnificently with my F200 so I will be using them with the new one.
One of the guys on FTF emailed me about his neighbor selling a mint S100fs for a low price..thinkin 'bout it.
300$ sounds too good...

Lili said...

BTW I will still keep my F200...still regret letting my F60Fd go!

Kim Letkeman said...

Lili: Let me know how you feel about the F70 next to the F200. And that's a pretty good deal for the S100fs ... one supposes that this might be the last great bridge cam Fuji will make, if their trend towards mushy imagery continues (HS10, F80EXR) ... *sigh*

Henrik said...

that S100fs looks like a monster (size+weight) why not go for an entry level Dslr?

Kim Letkeman said...

Henrik: I presume that you are asking Lili this question. You should probably user her name when doing that. I was really confused until I looked down through the comments. By the way, the S100fs has the largest sensor and thus the best image quality of any small sensor camera that Fuji ever made. Only their dSLRs bested it.

Lili said...

Henrik, thanks for your interest.
I do have 3 DSLR's already; Olympus e410 and e510 (with 5 lenses; 25, 35, 14-42, 40-150 and 70-300mm) and the Pentax K100D Super (2 lenses; 50/1.5, 135/2.5).
I have the S6000fd as well and love it dearly.
I am at work on an urban wildlife series with the Fuji Bridge Camera. Like Kevin C at FTF I value the quiet shutter, excellent EVF and tack sharp lens.
The Feral cats and other critters spook very easily and a quiet camera is a must.
I love my Oly's but their shutters are loud.
I am considering the S100fs for the reasons Kim mentions as well; sensor size and IQ as well as a longer reach.
My alternative is one of the Raynx tele-converters on my S6000fd

Lili said...

F70 is here. SMaller and slimmer than the F200, it fits much better in the same Lowepro Rezo case.
Just so quick test shots so far, a bit noisier at ISO 1600 but by no means alarmingly so.
Using your suggested settings and liking it a lot.
It use same batteries as F200 so my spares will fit!
Really liking the Zoom Range too.
Will try to have some pics on my flickr site tonight....

Kim Letkeman said...

Lili, thats terrific. Let me know what you get from it.

Lili said...

Here is my best shot from it so far,
1/1.6 sec, F5.3, ISO 200, 90.72mm-e
It is a touch sharper, at least here, than my S6000fd
1/1.2 sec, ISO 200, F5.6 85mm-e

Kim Letkeman said...

Lili: The DOF definitely seems a little wider ... the back wall retains more detail with the F70, but this looks like lens blur and not NR. Anyway, nice shots.

Lili said...

Thanks Kim,
I reshot the scene with the S6000fd and the F200EXR.
In the case of the former, I tripod mounted it, and used manual focus and stopped down a bit more.
The verdict was the same, both the EXR's had higher micro/local contrast and retained more detail.
As you say not NR.
It might be the jpeg engine, but I have done enough RAW work with the bigger Fuji to know the engine is VERY good in the IQ regime, esp at lower ISO.
Ah well I still love my 6000 but both the Little Fuji's continue to impress!
For the time being I have boxed the 200EXR up for safe storage and to force me to work with the 70 and learn its foibles.
For one thing, the default exposure is about 1 1/3 stops brighter than the 200.
Digirider has a thread on FTF of shots from Myanmanr, all straight OOC from the F70EXR.
As might be expected in good hands it is an awesome travel camera.
If all the 70's so expose it wold explain much of those images not needing much Post Processing.
My 200exr would need far more work.
Tomorrow the F70EXR goes with as we run errands.
Hopefully there will be many more shots to post then.

Kim Letkeman said...

Lili: glad to see you confirm the excellent detail retention of the F70 ... and yes, they do expose a little hotter than you are used to. Which I like, because it means that you get a wee bit more light to the sensor, further reducing the tendency towards noise.