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03-22-2012, 05:16 PM   #1
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MP question

I just purchased the k-5 and I have a question regarding sports photography indoors. Would it be better to shoot at 10MP instead of 16MP, and have less noise or shoot at 16MP and process in LR3? The reason, is cropping. I can crop more when shooting at 16MP than at 10MP, but I may have more noise at 16MP

03-22-2012, 06:03 PM   #2
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Shoot at ful resolution and then post-process.
Better, shoot RAW (or RAW+) and post-process.

Personally I shoot indoor volleyball. I shoot at 12 Mp (max res. of with my K-7) and I post-process in computer. My relatively limited experience taught me that the lens selection is more critical than anything else. And this is guieded by what you want to shoot (face, body, group of individuals, full court) and from where (from sidelines, from a seat in the arena, ...).

Hope that the comment may help.
03-22-2012, 06:06 PM   #3
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No. Your answer is to shoot in raw so you have all the data available for post procesing noise reduction. If you shoot in jpg, some data is lost in the conversion.

Thanks,
03-22-2012, 06:12 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by dndcdr Quote
The reason, is cropping. I can crop more when shooting at 16MP than at 10MP, but I may have more noise at 16MP
The noise will be the same unless you scale the photo in post, which is why you'd need the 16MP


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03-22-2012, 06:30 PM   #5
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The only reason I can think of to shoot at lower resolution is for in camera processing speed of the images taken.

I sometimes shoot at high frame rates with my K-5, and to have smaller files (and thus less data to process) I sometimes drop the resolution down a notch or two.

Other than that, as others have said, the best IQ method is to shoot at full resolution RAW and crop later. I don't think that a low MP rate would have less noise.
03-22-2012, 06:48 PM   #6
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I can think of few reasons to shoot at lower resolution.

* As wizofoz said, for faster in-camera CPUing and saving at high frame rates.
-- My K20D *only* shoots at 1.6mpx resolution when in Burst mode (23fps).
* If card space is scarce -- but it's better to buy more and bigger cards, cheap.
* When shooting RAW+JPG, and no RAW developer is nearby, and JPGs are wanted.
* When shooting to post on Facebook, or we otherwise don't care about image quality.

I'll admit that I'm still somewhat intimidated by snapping 14.6mpx pictures. I'm used to throwaway shots with my 5mpx P&S. Big image files devour processing time. Sometimes, small files are just more convenient. And I'm currently traveling without a fast RAW developer on my ancient laptop, so I'm shooting RAW+JPG with 6mpx JPGs. Hay, I may even post some of those shots!
03-22-2012, 06:50 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by dndcdr Quote
but I may have more noise at 16MP
This is new to me, I would not have thought that changing the image size in the camera would have any impact on noise at all.

As noted above, shoot in RAW, develop as needed and export to whatever size you need for the purpose.
03-23-2012, 04:34 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Hay, I may even post some of those shots!
You are not starting to get careless in your old age, are you?

Greetings

03-23-2012, 05:14 AM   #9
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Outdoor sports, I have the 200mm DA* 2.8 and for indoors such as volleyball and basketball, I hope to use the 50mm 1.4 FA, something light to carry as I will be shooting several games in one day. I have unrestricted access on the floor and coaches benches. I do try and not get in the way and nobody has told me to move yet. Officials have warned me I may get his by a flying ball, but they are fine with be on the sidelines.
03-23-2012, 05:33 AM   #10
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I find the responses interesting. Personally, I don't really think we have answered the OP properly yet, so I will try to wrap up all the points.

FIrst of all, regardless of the MP resolution of the file, the basic noise pattern does not change in the raw data, because the camera uses all the sensor points and then scales down the output. Note also that reduced resolution files are only available in JPEG not RAW. ALso note that noise as a function of MP is really a sensor issue, as the MP increases the sensor size reduces and for any identical technology smaller sensor size results in higher noise. The reason we see improved noise and higher sensor (MP) count is because sensor technology is still improving.

Having made the above comment, you should note however that by rescaling downwards in resolution, depending on the exact algorythm used there may be an overall reduction in noise as pixels are averaged etc, to produce the lower resolution.

The comments about achieving higher frame rate shooting low resolution jpeg is correct to a point, I think the maximum frame rate can be met continuously only for about a 25% reduction in resolution, after that the processing time to rescale more than offsets the improvement in data transfer through the buffer to the memory card. The K7 i know for sure, can only run at continuous frame rate at 10MP, at 6MP it can't keep up due to the processing, Not sure where the K5 sits but it is the same.

But why not just shoot JPEG and adjust the WB correctly for the lighting? The K5 is an excellent performer in low light, and if you spend just a few moments setting up the color balance at the start, just shoot jpeg and be done with it, but retaim maximum resolution and image quality settings. This really leaves you with the equivelent of an 8 bit RAW file, because maximum quality has essentually no compression after the 12 bit to 8 bit conversion.
03-23-2012, 08:38 AM   #11
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Thanks lowell, I will do that. I wanted to shoot J-PEG as I can get more images on one card as opposed to shooting in RAW.
03-23-2012, 10:18 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by dndcdr Quote
I wanted to shoot J-PEG as I can get more images on one card as opposed to shooting in RAW.
At the risk of being pedantic: Cards are cheap. Multi-gigabyte storage is cheap. Your time is worth more than your storage. And RAW files contain all the data captured by the camera, whilst a JPG file throws away most of that data. It's a waste. Don't succumb to false economy.

My first digicam was a 1.1mpx P&S that came with a 4MB card (which I quickly replaced with some 32MB cards). I tried shooting in modes that produced the smallest JPGs so I could fit the most onto onto one card. The result? A batch of low-quality pictures that are barely worth looking at now. So I bought successively larger cards and stopped worrying about running out of storage space.
03-23-2012, 07:40 PM   #13
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I guess it's back to raw for me. cards are cheap. A 16GB class 10 is about $15.00
03-23-2012, 08:42 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by dndcdr Quote
I guess it's back to raw for me. cards are cheap. A 16GB class 10 is about $15.00
Hi
Don't go quite this cheap, remember you will always pay dearly for the cheapest price.

$15 sounds like off e-bay ex China and in this case you will receive a known brand knock off which will have lots of bugs. Don't risk it, it's not worth it. Buy the real thing at a fair price!

Greetings
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