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03-06-2014, 05:15 PM   #1
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Pentax K-3 High ISO test.

The test scene was shot in worst possible conditions : artificial light, drizzle and mist. 18-55 WR Kit and a tripod. 50 mm F9.0, Av mode, multi segment metering. The images were developed from RAW in DxO 9 without any corrections applied. ISO 100 shot was too blurry due to a gust of wind.

ISO 200



ISO 400



ISO 800



ISO 1600



ISO 3200



ISO 6400



ISO 12800



These are crops (click on the icons and choose original size to view). Here is a link to full size JPG files.

03-06-2014, 05:17 PM   #2
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DxO 9 must love color noise- it should be trivial to eliminate in these shots with only a minor correction applied

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03-06-2014, 05:24 PM   #3
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Call me strange if you like but my K-3 doesnt have nearly this much noise.
03-06-2014, 05:24 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
DxO 9 must love color noise- it should be trivial to eliminate in these shots with only a minor correction applied
Still, they do look pretty noisy.

03-06-2014, 05:28 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by j2photos Quote
Call me strange if you like but my K-3 doesnt have nearly this much noise.
I have a noisy K-3 as well... yet other post pictures with a fraction the noise... mine is such that I try not to shoot over 400 ISO. I have shot successfully to 1600, but sometimes that is a disaster, 400 is safe. It would seem there is some sample variation.
03-06-2014, 05:32 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I have a noisy K-3 as well... yet other post pictures with a fraction the noise... mine is such that I try not to shoot over 400 ISO. I have shot successfully to 1600, but sometimes that is a disaster, 400 is safe. It would seem there is some sample variation.
I shoot at 3200 to 6400 on a consistent basis. I might be able to post some shots tomorrow. I will be at work late today and dont have access to my photos
03-06-2014, 05:33 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I have a noisy K-3 as well... yet other post pictures with a fraction the noise... mine is such that I try not to shoot over 400 ISO. I have shot successfully to 1600, but sometimes that is a disaster, 400 is safe. It would seem there is some sample variation.
I find your comment troubling, coming from a seasoned Pentax shooter.
edit: I have been thinking about getting one, now, not sure.
03-06-2014, 05:36 PM   #8
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I tried processing these shots with DxO's PRIME noise reduction engine. I had a feeling that it was very harsh in these conditions - it smoothed everything out. I can post the de-noised shots as well.
De-noised shots
PEF file at 12800


Last edited by Stagnant; 03-06-2014 at 05:47 PM.
03-06-2014, 05:57 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
edit: I have been thinking about getting one, now, not sure.
Got mine (K3) last week, returned it on Tuesday... As Nornhead said, anything past 400 was very noisy. Unacceptably noisy, worst than my 12 year old, 1 megapixel HP point and shoot with a microscopic sensor. I'm still debating whether I'll be asking for a replacement or a refund. I didn't make a fuss about it because something had to be wrong with the camera (shit happens). Lots of people posted pictures at 12,800 and 25,600 with less noise than I was getting at 800, even after going through Dfine (NR plugin).

I'm getting the feeling that the Sony sensors may not be consistent in quality. Because as I read the post here and elsewhere, either the people can't believe how good it is (noise wise) or find the camera to be very bad with noise.
03-06-2014, 06:03 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by fgaudet Quote
Got mine (K3) last week, returned it on Tuesday... As Nornhead said, anything past 400 was very noisy. Unacceptably noisy, worst than my 12 year old, 1 megapixel HP point and shoot with a microscopic sensor. I'm still debating whether I'll be asking for a replacement or a refund. I didn't make a fuss about it because something had to be wrong with the camera (shit happens). Lots of people posted pictures at 12,800 and 25,600 with less noise than I was getting at 800, even after going through Dfine (NR plugin).

I'm getting the feeling that the Sony sensors may not be consistent in quality. Because as I read the post here and elsewhere, either the people can't believe how good it is (noise wise) or find the camera to be very bad with noise.
I have been shooting with K5 = spoiled with high ISO. Not wanting to degrade back to K7 noise levels. No matter what the other performance upgrades offer.
03-06-2014, 06:20 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
I have been shooting with K5 = spoiled with high ISO. Not wanting to degrade back to K7 noise levels. No matter what the other performance upgrades offer.


It is not even close to K-7 noise levels. In many comparisons the K-3 actually out does the K-5 series at noise handling. The K-5 tends to muddy the details while the K-3 may be noisier it retains the details.
03-06-2014, 06:31 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by j2photos Quote
The K-5 tends to muddy the details while the K-3 may be noisier it retains the details.
I`ve heard that before. Just pick any cam.vs.cam.
On the fence and happy so far.
03-06-2014, 06:36 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
I`ve heard that before. Just pick any cam.vs.cam.
On the fence and happy so far.

As you should be the K-5 is a great camera. The K-3 is as well, which makes me wonder why I see so many high noise shots when mine doesnt seem to produce much noise at all.
03-06-2014, 06:43 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by j2photos Quote
As you should be the K-5 is a great camera. The K-3 is as well, which makes me wonder why I see so many high noise shots when mine doesnt seem to produce much noise at all.
Could be the high ISO NR and camera settings.
03-06-2014, 06:50 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
Could be the high ISO NR and camera settings.
I know mine is turned off totally.
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