(From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

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paulobro
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(From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby paulobro » Wed Oct 15, 2008 5:55 pm

From a thread started by agorabasta — which translates as "enough now" in Portuguese, although that user's profile has him located at Russian Federation — a setting for the Alpha 700 that does make a difference when shooting high ISO.

The settings:
base mode 'standard', saturation +1, sharpness +2, brightness -2, zone matching -1; DR+; high ISO NR 'high'.
If you set high ISO NR to off and apply NR later in an editor, you may set saturation to 0.

The thread starts at:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read. ... e=29698285

I was certainly impressed by the results.
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From a non-scientific trial it looks good.

Unread postby Yagil Henkin » Wed Oct 15, 2008 6:39 pm

Saved it (NR off, Saturation 0, ISO 3200) as my MR1 setting.

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby Dr. Harout » Wed Oct 15, 2008 6:45 pm

Hi Paulo.
Very interesting. I think David, Frank, Mark and all our other friends owning A900 should try it.
Thanks for the link.
By the way, "agora" means forum in Greek. :D
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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Wed Oct 15, 2008 7:41 pm

It's just the same as increasing exposure for the raw file. Like Lo80, half a stop extra, then process the file to get back a normal scale. There is no particular magic taking place, but what the 'discovery' amounts to is a way of making the camera expose to the right, then normalise the tones from the resulting overexosed raw file. The unwanted setting is DRO+ which will never do anything to improve noise, only make it worse, but could rescue the Brightness -2 (far better to use Brightness -1 and no DRO, I would think).

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby mikeriach » Wed Oct 15, 2008 7:48 pm

Sonolta wrote:LOL....Not a chance in the world I am using those settings! DR+ and zone matching - at the same time, high ISO NR set to high and -2 brightness, etc,etc.... :lol:

I will stick to doing it my way....those JPG settings are CRAZY! :shock: I will shoot raw or use my own JPG settings...Whomever claims those are the *high ISO* settings are full of bullsnoot...I will challenge that guy to a high ISO shoot off any day or night of the week!

My gosh... :roll:

-Sonolta


Would you care to suggest your best jpg settings?
Mike :)
Only an A77II and Tamron 16-300 left sadly. Sony cannot supply what I want so rightly or wrongly I've branched out to someone who does and I'm very happy.

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby Dr. Harout » Wed Oct 15, 2008 8:02 pm

Thanks Don.
:D
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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Wed Oct 15, 2008 11:09 pm

Ignoring agorabasta's DRO+ setting which can do nothing but harm, I quickly tried setting Zone -1 (the strongest and only exposure increasing zone setting possible) with Brightness -2 and -1 (-2 does seem to compensate correctly for Zone -1, by bringing the lighter tones back down to normal) and +2 sharpness and High NR. I have only examined the A900 files on screen, but after seeing the effect, I also used OFF, Low, and Normal NR and -3, 0, +1, and +3 sharpness.

He's actually right - +2 sharpness is the first step which changes the grain pattern of the noise from big colour blobs to a tight pattern more like ACR development of raw. If you set -3 sharpness, the noise explodes into big clouds of soft colour and detail is obliterated. At 0 sharpness, it is typical Sony - heavy chroma noise remaining, softened detail. But when you increase sharpness on the A900 (and presumably the A700, which he was basing this on) the noise grain progressively tightens up to resemble Nikon noise more. Altering the NR setting also has its effect, with Low being a good choice, High coarsening the pattern and producing more random salt and pepper pixels.

For whatever reason (and DRO+ certainly is not part of it!) the -1 Zone and -2 Brightness - which kind of cancel each other out, because -2 Zone is a bit like +2 Brightness but gives extra exposure (Brightness changes the gain-curve instead) does work. Folk on dPreview reckon that Zone -1 causes a 0.5 stop actual increase in exposure (settings) and I can confirm that, although agorabasta denies it. So you might get the same result by just setting +0.5 over-ride plus Brightness -2. I tried that, and a few similar combinations, but on visual inspection at 19X mag concluded that the Zone -1 must kick in some extra chroma NR (perhaps to compensate for a curve which opens up shadows, in addition to the extra exposure?).

I agree with Sonolta, I would not abandon raw shooting just because some complex messing around with settings can improve a JPEG (but really turn ISO 6400 into ISO 4500, relatively). Also, if you do these settings, they remain set until cancelled or you pick a different Creative Style - and they even return when you go back to the Creative Style you adjusted. For me that's dangerous, I am good at leaving settings in place accidentally. Making an Memory position preset seems the only safe way, but my M positions are already occupied.

David

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby paulobro » Thu Oct 16, 2008 9:05 am

:roll:

Mayhaps there's useful info in Mr. Sonolta's usual output, always LingOL and copiously pouring repetitive imagery. I don't know; too much noise for me to try braving some signal out of...

But then it does bring to my mind the closing lines of Mr. Edgar Allan Poe's The Haunted Palace:

Vast forms, that move fantastically
To a discordant melody,
While, like a ghastly rapid river,
Through the pale door
A [] throng rush out forever
And laugh — but smile no more.
Paulo Brochado

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Some (processed) samples

Unread postby paulobro » Wed Oct 22, 2008 12:25 pm

No concern for compo, these are some examples I got using agorabasta's 'standard' settings and then editing the resulting JPEGs to fit my taste. I'd think some interesting range was covered. No manual camera adjustments; EXIF should tell the story...

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3191/296 ... c22a_o.jpg
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3277/296 ... 1c7a_o.jpg
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3008/296 ... b965_o.jpg
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3191/296 ... 247c_o.jpg
Paulo Brochado

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby paulobro » Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:29 pm

Many of my attempts at image getting are related to bird captures, in flight or not. 1/1000 is usually my best bet and in an overcast day as when I took those pics, to achieve such shutter speed with my Tam 200-500, even wide opened, ISO6400 is called for.

The shot with the hose was of a 'cave' under the greenery against a wall, in deep shadow. As the blue hose was the best illuminated object there, as attested by several blown highlight spots on it, I'd guess those brown dead leaves somehow managed to reflect some of the incident light coming from the hose.

Agorabasta's standard setting prescribes Sat 0 if NR is off. As it was/is.

Positive, or negative light compensation is not part of the setting, as I understand it.

Those were/are JPEGs, not RAW files. EXIF's intact. Sharp +2, bright +2, Z -1, DR +; those are the settings.

No need for belief. Anyone with an A700 can try these settings and see — as I'm supposing you will once your camera's back...
Paulo Brochado

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby agorabasta » Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:35 pm

O Paulo,

My settings were - brightness '-2', not '+2'. But that's more about personal preferences and scene specifics. The most important noise-wise are the ZM and 'sharpness' settings. Also, I used DR+ - it's actually producing less noise using DR up to lv+1, than using brightness +2 - that Apical chip is a great piece of hardwired workforce, and no manual raw-processing would produce a consistent 3-D correction surface that Apical creates instead of 2-D curves normally applied to raw data.

Also, I must mention that your example with that hose shows a lot of small items/detail and as such is completely different from the universally-macro stuff posted by your opponent. And those high-ISO macro shots off A700 have been great with no tinkering ever since V2 firmware.

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby Dr. Harout » Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:52 pm

Agorabasta, nice from you to join us. Welcome to the forum. :D
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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby paulobro » Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:05 pm

agorabasta wrote:<...> Also, I must mention that your example with that hose shows a lot of small items/detail and as such is completely different from the universally-macro stuff posted by your opponent. <...>


Agorabasta, glad you jumped in.
I certainly wouldn't call Mr. Sonolta my opponent: I'm not fighting for anything, nothing I'm proposing or preaching. Just found your settings to be quite useful on certain circumstances, thought I'd suggest other people try them.

And hey, thanks for sharing them.

Take care.
Paulo Brochado

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The final cut

Unread postby paulobro » Fri Oct 24, 2008 10:24 am

Seems Mr. Kilpatrick's opinion regarding best settings for JPEGs on A900 (and, one'd gather, on A700) regarding minimal noise on high ISO are expressed in his last posting on this site's homepage:
http://www.photoclubalpha.com/2008/10/2 ... -iso-body/

Actions do speak louder than words, now don't they?
Paulo Brochado

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Re: (From DPR) Best high ISO settings for A700

Unread postby Pirate » Sat Jan 07, 2012 2:30 am

paulobro wrote:The settings:
Base mode 'standard', saturation 0, sharpness +2, brightness -2, zone matching -1; DR+; high ISO 'off''.


Ahoy!

Would the above settings be a safe bet on A850 with NR done in pp or have there been suggested changes to these settings that would work better?


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