Tuesday, April 27, 2010

HS10 Review Part 6 – Wheels and a Mutt

I walked up the street after shooting the flowers I showed in part 5. One of my other neighbor’s sons has a very pretty Hyundai Tiburon with nice wheels on it.

I like shooting tires because they are hard to pull details from, since they are always trying to absorb all the light they get. In this case, the wheels are also black, but shiny (painted aluminum I’m guessing.)

There are also nice details on wheels on cars like nuts, screw heads, and what have you. So the question is how well these render with each camera, shot at approximately 270mm (the F70’s max focal length.)





Turns out that the HS10 shot its version at 43.1, and to get the equivalent focal length in 135 film (i.e. full frame), the formula is max 135 equivalence / max actual * actual = actual 135 equivalence.

720mm / 126mm * 43.1mm = 246mm

That’s less than the F70, so magnification should be smaller. Yet we see the tire filling more of the frame with the HS10. Either the HS10 does not report focal length accurately, or I moved.

This is something to be tested later … there are markings on the lens. How close are they to what you get. And how similar are they to other Fujis at the same setting? All very interesting, but I don;t have access to one of these things at this point.

So, what do we see in these images?

Tone-wise, we can see that the F70EXR is more subdued. This is expected with its EXR sensor. The tone curve is softer on the EXR sensor, which makes the colors come out a bit muted as well. But this is also my processing. Each image must be processed separately, since the captures are often quite different. So there is little to conclude here.

What we certainly can say, though, is that at these sizes (800px being the perfect web display size in my opinion – as always, click through to get those images) the details are perfectly legible, whether they came from the 10mp HS10 ot the 5mp F70EXR. What matters more is the exposure and tone, and the magnification.

And that segues to a shot at the full 720mm from the HS10 … I mean, who can resist?


Here, we can now see (at least once you click through) the rain spots on the middle disk, and it is obvious now that the nut at the top is a locking wheel nut, requiring a special wrench. I hate those, by the way, as I cannot be bothered to find the special wrench each time I change from summer tires to ice tires or back.

The detail here is terrific, and so is what I call the 3-dimensionality. It feels real when you look at it.

Now, let me dampen your spirits just a bit. The neighbor happened to walk up while I was shooting and his dog lay down on the road while we chatted. I asked permission to shoot him and here is the shot. Cute dog.

HS10  202mm  f/5.6 1/125” 100ISO


That’s not too bad at all. Nice detail around the nose and on his side. But strange mushiness on the ear. I don’t really get that. SHould be in perfect focus, could the NR really be that aggressive? This is sees this somewhat random pattern of fine detail that is darker than the surroundings? That seems a bit much to me.

Here’s what I have for crops:


You can see here that the nose detail is alright, although a little mushy in the tan parts. The ear is a total mess. It’s dark, so we see only the coarsest hairs. The collar is ok, except in the dark blure. That seems to simply clump. And the side looks the best, because there is quite a bit of high contrast detail.

My point here is that you have to watch out for this behavior in your images. People with dark hair, foliage a long distance off in shadow, or even just dark foliage. That kind of thing. Is there any texture preserved?

The HS10 likes contrast. So does any modern Fuji with really small photosites. That’s what makes the EXR technology so exciting … that the photosites double in size and detail retention is very good. Still, that ISO ladder showed that the Sony sensor can retain good details. So why did it retain such nice details in the white fur there, and wipe out the dark fur here? Is that it’s thing? To be very tone sensitive?

I have no answer as I cannot run such a test right now. Something to ponder though.

Oops … almost forgot one final image. Tiburon is Korean for Shark I believe. (Correction: Spanish for shark according to wikipedia. Thanks for the tip Dave.) So this little detail on the rear edge of the top of the car is rather cute …



neos66 said...

Hello Kim.

Today the pulled out the new firmware for the HS10.
Could you please post your experience with it?
What you think about changes?
What you think about this release?

Thx...and keep it up.

Kim Letkeman said...

Neos66: I don't have access to the camera any more, but the tests that have been posted at Dpreview give me confidence that their jpeg engine is better now for higher DR smearing. What I don't like so far is the fact that the exposures look wrong for high DR images. The highlights are suppressed, but the shadows get darker and darker ... it looks to me like higher DR now has a simple algorithm that just sets up some exposure compensation, and that is something you can do yourself. So the EXR technology remains streets ahead of the software DR algorithms Fuji is using.

dave said...

Tiburon is the spanish word for shark not korean :D

Kim Letkeman said...

Dave, you are correct. At least according to wikipedia, which is more than likely correct. I was confused by something I had read once and the fact that they are a Korean company. No matter ... it's still a fin :-)