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03-06-2017, 07:22 PM   #1
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Was I expecting too much?

The K-1's high ISO noise doesn't seem that better than my old K-5 II (crop) body. I'm not sure if I was expecting too much or not.. but the K-1 seems to have a finer grain yet more of it. I have some 1:1 crops of both the K-1 at 1600 ISO and the K-5 II. NR and Sharpening disabled.

Further I notice lots of hot pixels.. especially white pixels.. on long exposures. Here is a 4 minute exposure @ ISO 100 with NR and Sharpening disabled, Clarity and Shadows turned up (to show off the effect more) in a 75F room. Not exactly hot..

All imported into LR6.

Interestingly on the 'hot' pixels, the Noise reduction doesn't do a thing to them. If I turn up the NR to max level, I get a smeary image but with the bright pixels...

Is this normal!? I have the latest firmware (1.40) installed too if that matters.


Last edited by mee; 09-22-2017 at 04:38 PM.
03-06-2017, 07:33 PM   #2
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Have you seen this thread?

I just glanced quickly at it, so can't summarize.
03-06-2017, 07:33 PM   #3
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Seems some units are affected with the hot pixels issue, search the forum, there's a big thread about it.

Another thing - as far as I know, dynamic range for higher iso is larger in k-1, meaning you won't clip shadows and highlights as easily. Also I think 36mp gives plenty of space to apply noise reduction and keep details. I personally never handled a camera with no noise, d800, 5D III, etc. I'm personally pretty happy with high iso performance of my unit.
03-06-2017, 07:34 PM   #4
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I've found that the "Pixel Mapping" function helps reduce hot pixels and turning on Slow Shutter Speed NR helps a lot, too.

03-06-2017, 07:46 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
The K-1's high ISO noise doesn't seem that better than my old K-5 II (crop) body. I'm not sure if I was expecting too much or not.. .
The pixel sizes are the same, and the Signal-to-Noise ratio of the RAW files will be almost the same. Many don't understand this.

The improvement you will have to do in post-processing your JPEGs. The K-1 will have more pixels to downsample.
03-06-2017, 08:08 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
The pixel sizes are the same, and the Signal-to-Noise ratio of the RAW files will be almost the same. Many don't understand this.

The improvement you will have to do in post-processing your JPEGs. The K-1 will have more pixels to downsample.
I sure didn't/don't.

I was expecting a cleaner ISO 800 and 1600 over my K-5 II. But it seems about the same.. ISO Noise wise..
03-06-2017, 08:24 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
I sure didn't/don't.

I was expecting a cleaner ISO 800 and 1600 over my K-5 II. But it seems about the same.. ISO Noise wise..
If you print/view a K5 image and K1 image at the same size, the K1 image will look a lot cleaner. If you view them at pixel size they'll look the same.

I don't see hot pixels, but I also am not shooting four minute exposures. Seems like you should take an exposure to subtract hot pixels if you are doing long exposures like that.
03-06-2017, 08:31 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
4 minute exposure
Maybe that is the culprit ?
I still have my old K5 and also being told (from what I am reading on the K-1) that the K-1 beats the K5 in that aspect (noise).
That is only a guess but maybe the very long exposure has something to do with it?

03-06-2017, 08:37 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
Have you seen this thread?

I just glanced quickly at it, so can't summarize.
Yes I've been there.. it is a rather large and winding thread... page 11 (IIRC) shows there was a dark band issue at the top of some sensors (or would that be bottom since the image is flipped?). My K-1 doesn't have that issue. It does seem to have the white dots though.. but there doesn't seem to be a hard rule on what is considered OK white dot level and what is considered BAD white dot level.

When I take a shot at 25600 in a dark setting and enable NR, LR removes the color noise pretty nicely and I'm left with the white dots. Hmmm..

---------- Post added 03-06-17 at 09:43 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Maybe that is the culprit ?
I still have my old K5 and also being told (from what I am reading on the K-1) that the K-1 beats the K5 in that aspect (noise).
That is only a guess but maybe the very long exposure has something to do with it?
Noooo! please don't go there.. in the thread, that luftfluss linked, several people go several times around the horn over that until someone is called a troll.. Don't want it to get unfriendly like that here.

Long exposures are something I tend to do with large NDFs (10 sometimes 13 stops) so clean output is rather important.. I had this issue with the K-5 II (with hot pixels in general when shooting long exposures) but never with white dots like this. This is a K-1 'trait' it seems.. They seem so scattered and random too so I'm not sure of a way to mitigate it.

From what I gathered in that other thread, The D810 also had a similar issue early on and the issue was sensor calibration of some sort that needed to be performed. But yet in that same thread some are saying a 'few' white dots are fine.. but there aren't any (that I saw) examples of acceptable level vs unacceptable level.

Last edited by mee; 03-06-2017 at 08:44 PM.
03-06-2017, 08:48 PM - 4 Likes   #10
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Ever notice how interesting compelling images seem to have less apparent tech defects of any kind than the dull, mundane ones do?
03-06-2017, 08:55 PM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
I sure didn't/don't.

I was expecting a cleaner ISO 800 and 1600 over my K-5 II. But it seems about the same.. ISO Noise wise..
Yep.

The SNR 18% for this APS-C camera and a FF one like the K-1 or Nikon D810 using the same sensor wafer is practically identical.

You can do the following:


Go to Pentax K-5 II vs Nikon D800


Click on Measurements


Click on SNR 18%


Click on Screen


Repeat for Dynamic Range, Tonal Range, Color Sensitivity


For fun, click on ISO Sensitivity
03-06-2017, 09:11 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
I sure didn't/don't.
Do you look at images with 100% zoom? Or do you look the pictures of the same size and viewing distance from K1 and K5. There is no surprise that the same pixel tech. has similar noise, however, final photos are usually not for viewing at pixel level, that's why someone coin the term of total light.

---------- Post added 07-03-17 at 05:12 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
The SNR 18% for this APS-C camera and a FF one like the K-1 or Nikon D810 using the same sensor wafer is practically identical.
That poses the question of why did you get a full frame camera then?
03-06-2017, 09:20 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
Yep.

The SNR 18% for this APS-C camera and a FF one like the K-1 or Nikon D810 using the same sensor wafer is practically identical.

You can do the following:


Go to Pentax K-5 II vs Nikon D800


Click on Measurements


Click on SNR 18%


Click on Screen


Repeat for Dynamic Range, Tonal Range, Color Sensitivity


For fun, click on ISO Sensitivity
Well.. hmmm. After seeing that, I don't know if I should be impressed or saddened.
03-06-2017, 09:24 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
That is only a guess but maybe the very long exposure has something to do with it?

---------- Post added 07-03-17 at 05:25 ----------

Last edited by biz-engineer; 03-07-2017 at 11:00 AM. Reason: Rude comment removed.
03-06-2017, 09:48 PM - 2 Likes   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Do you look at images with 100% zoom? Or do you look the pictures of the same size and viewing distance from K1 and K5. There is no surprise that the same pixel tech. has similar noise, however, final photos are usually not for viewing at pixel level, that's why someone coin the term of total light.

---------- Post added 07-03-17 at 05:12 ----------


That poses the question of why did you get a full frame camera then?
I have two of them, Biz-engineer, but you raise a very good question. I remember you posting nearly identical shots of IIRC a K-1/450mm and K-5/300mm combo. You should link back to it, it was very interesting.

I still prefer my APS-C bodies for macro and sports/wildlife for the reach, BTW. You're an excellent bird photographer and know that what counts is laying down the maximum number of pixels on the target from where you're shooting. Your D FA 150-450 works on either your K-3 or K-1, and in fact, the K-3 uses the best part of that lens - the middle.

My 24Mps Sony FF doesn't give me any more resolution than your K-3, but each pixel is bigger. My 36Mps K-1 doesn't give any better noise or dynamic range than Mee's K-5 II, but there's another 20Mp to downsample the JPEGs from.

It's a lot of money to pay for about a one stop advantage, isn't it?

I put the Nikon D800 stats above, but anyone who wants to compare the K-5 vs the K-1 can repeat the exercise here:

https://www.dxomark.com/Cameras/Compare/Side-by-side/Pentax-K-1-versus-Penta...IIs___1075_830

Last edited by clackers; 03-06-2017 at 10:11 PM.
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