Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
11-08-2010, 10:32 AM   #1
Veteran Member
Workingdog's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: York, PA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 726
The K7 and High ISO noise

I know this subject has probably been covered a million times but with the new K5 on the scene can we do it just one more time.

I have a K10d and upgraded to the K7 a year ago for more pixels, higher fps, better exposure metering, slightly better AF and on these counts I'm generally pleased.

I "think" the K7 high ISO noise is actually a little better than the K10d as I'll shoot up to ISO 2000 with it and kept my K10d at ISO 800 max. Would the general consensus agree with this?

Also, how bad is the K7's high ISO, I mean in the REAL WORLD as compared with its contemporaries? I've never had hands-on experience PPing images from a camera that has supposedly superior high ISO capability so I have nothing to compare to. Are we splitting hairs, ie. pixel peeping? When I read rave reviews about high ISO noise performance I get ISO envy!

11-08-2010, 11:10 AM   #2
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by Workingdog Quote
I know this subject has probably been covered a million times but with the new K5 on the scene can we do it just one more time.

I have a K10d and upgraded to the K7 a year ago for more pixels, higher fps, better exposure metering, slightly better AF and on these counts I'm generally pleased.

I "think" the K7 high ISO noise is actually a little better than the K10d as I'll shoot up to ISO 2000 with it and kept my K10d at ISO 800 max. Would the general consensus agree with this?

Also, how bad is the K7's high ISO, I mean in the REAL WORLD as compared with its contemporaries? I've never had hands-on experience PPing images from a camera that has supposedly superior high ISO capability so I have nothing to compare to. Are we splitting hairs, ie. pixel peeping? When I read rave reviews about high ISO noise performance I get ISO envy!
Having shot the K7 and K10D both, I would say that sounds about right. I would say that you could shoot at ISO 6400 on the K5 and achieve as good or better results.
11-08-2010, 05:16 PM   #3
Veteran Member
Todd Adamson's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Iowa
Posts: 722
I just bought the K-7 as my first Pentax camera, and I'm pretty pleased. I knew is wasn't going to be a high ISO monster when I ordered it. I think clean files at high ISO is awesome, but for some types of photographers, it's highly overrated. I understand some people need it, but once it's available EVERYONE thinks they need it.

For the last three years, I've made most of my money with the Nikon D3, and I bought it specifically for its high ISO capability, because I am primarily an available light shooter. Since then the D3s can yield a stop or two more than the D3, but I have no desire to upgrade. I'm doing fine with my D3, and I rarely shoot it above 1600. It's nice to know can if I have to, and it's nice to know that I can go to 1600 with no worries about the client ordering a wall print.

So when I was considering the K-7, I decided if I was careful, I could probably get good ISO 1600 files out of it. Here's one of the first pics I took with the camera at that ISO:



Good enough for me!

Also, I shot that in very low light, at a shutter speed of 1/13th. And I seem to be able to get these shots at a decent percentage rate, too, way better than I can do with my D3 and 70-200 VR lens. The K-7's SR is sa-weeet! Plus it works with decades-old manual lenses, which is what I used here.
11-08-2010, 05:30 PM   #4
Veteran Member
Laurentiu Cristofor's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: WA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 3,044
I still use my K10D and sometimes I even push it to 1600 - it's not as bad as I used to think it was before I got to know what I was doing

Yes, there's a clear progression in performance from K10D, through K20D/K-7, then K-x/K-r and finally K-5. But I don't think it makes older models obsolete.

11-11-2010, 09:23 AM   #5
New Member




Join Date: Aug 2010
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3
Absolutely agreed.
Sometimes, when you want to pick something in dark, K7 do have a disadvantage.

But, I love K7 or even pentax most for its sooo-sweet color tone - Deep, liquid feeling and lovely.
11-11-2010, 09:51 AM   #6
Site Supporter
Ahab's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Oracle, Az
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 739
Yah Todd, that cat is good enough for me too!
11-11-2010, 12:12 PM   #7
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Southern Indiana
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 14,957
K7 is about a stop better than the K10 with regard to high iso. I felt iso 800 on the K10 was about the same as iso 1600 on the K7. The "problem" people saw with the K7 was that it didn't beat the preceding camera (the K20) in high iso, but was roughly equivalent. The K10 is better at iso 100 than the K7, but image quality seems to degrade quickly as iso goes up.

The other thing is that the SR in my opinion is a lot better on the K7 than on the K10, which helps a lot in lower light settings.
11-11-2010, 12:20 PM   #8
Pentaxian
Pablom's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Jerusalem
Posts: 1,940
QuoteOriginally posted by Workingdog Quote
Are we splitting hairs, ie. pixel peeping?
Yes

11-11-2010, 04:15 PM   #9
hcc
Pentaxian
hcc's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,482
I would agree with most earlier posts. I have a K-7 and I have no issue with low-light shooting. I simply do not understand all the fuss about high ISO noise. I shoot in low light conditions and I do not care about ISO as long the noise is reasonable.

I do often some outdoor shooting at dusk incl. sunrise, sunset and very low light incl. nighttime.

From my experience in low light conditions, I tend to use one of these three techniques with my K-7:

1) I shoot JPEG straight out of camera with NR "Off". Then I process with a Noise Reduction software (Noiseware Standard Standalone). The NR softwares like Noiseware work best when the image files have not had any previous NR processing.

2) I set my USER mode such as I shoot JPEG straight out of the camera with "Strong" High ISO Noise Reducation. The In camera noise-reduction minimum ISO is set at 400. This technique (2) is the one proposed by Adam in [1, K-7 High ISO Success!].

3) In very low light I use the fast prime lens: Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f1.4. I bought this fast prime especially for low light outdoor conditions and it is a beauty.
Recently I shot at sunset some waves (ie dynamic motion). With my DA18-250mm, I had to stop at 19:20-19:30. I swapped to the Nokton 58mm and I was able to shoot until 19:50 at ISO 100 to 400, and I took my last shot at 20:10 at ISO 1600.


I shoot typically JPEG in P mode. (Yes, that is very basic but does fulfull my needs.) I set the mode dial to P for (1) and (3), and USER for (2). I use (1) and (2) with my DA18-250mm. In addition, I set the maximum ISO to 3200 in the K-7 in all modes.


Lastly, on K-7 and noise reduction (NR), I would recommend you to read a few relevants threads/discussons in the Forum including these:

[1] K-7 High ISO Success!

[2] K7 ISO 2500 noise setting and post processing tests...

Hope that the comments and experience will help....
11-13-2010, 03:58 PM   #10
Junior Member




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 47


This is a K-7 RAW image at 1000 ISO, which was sharpened and cleaned up in CS3 + Topaz Denoise, and converted to jpg and compressed for this size.

Focal Length 35 mm
Exposure Time 1/60 sec
Aperture f/5
ISO Equivalent 1000

Do I really need to pay the premium for a K-5 right now? You have to weigh up the time spent in post-processing versus convenience. And of course the K-5 would have had better dynamic range for this shot.
11-13-2010, 04:13 PM   #11
Junior Member




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 47


This is a K-7 image shot at 3200 ISO and cleaned up in CS3 and Topaz Denoise. Shot with the excellent Pentax DA 70 Limited. I don't think it is agreat shot but I wanted to see if I could get anything out of 3200 ISO.

Hand-held, it would have been sharper if I'd had a tripod, but I was sitting in the audience.

Focal Length 70 mm
Exposure Time 1/60 sec
Aperture f/2.8
ISO Equivalent 3200
11-13-2010, 04:18 PM   #12
Veteran Member




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 886
For starters... I would say that getting iso 2000 from the k-7 over iso 800 with the K10d, is more than just slightly better. That's a stop and a 1/3, and is fairly noticeable in real world use. That being said, the difference between the K-7 and K-5 is more like a 2.5-3 stop advantage, and is downright silly.

I found the same ideal limits to be true with my K10d, and K-7 (800 and 2000), so I would say that we probably have pretty similar tastes for what acceptable noise is. So with that in ming, I won't hesitate to shoot in the iso 3200-12800 range with the K-5. ISO 3200 is all but crystal clear, 6400, is very clean and usable, and 12800 is still quite good if you nail the exposure and do a little PP NR.
11-13-2010, 04:23 PM   #13
Junior Member




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 47


OK, the highlights are blown out in this compressed jpg, but again, the shadows aren't too bad. Denoised with Lightroom 3 this time, and I think there's sufficient detail. Not completely denoised, which gives it a plastic look.

Model PENTAX K-7
Flash Used No
Focal Length 35 mm
Exposure Time 1/60 sec
Aperture f/5.6
ISO Equivalent 1250
11-13-2010, 04:38 PM   #14
Junior Member




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Sydney
Posts: 47
What John Bee achieved with my K-7 2500 ISO shot

Want to direct readers to this post by John Bee, a genius in noise reduction techniques. Thanks John!


QuoteOriginally posted by JohnBee Quote
Here's a K7 ISO2500 image I worked on for a fellow Pentaxian(Adam A) from dpreview. He agreed to let me use this image in part for an advanced noise management tutorial I've been working on(very kindly). And so I thought I would share the preliminaries here as well.
http://www.bertin.ca/tmp/data/IMGP4622_LRG.jpg
META: Pentax K7, ISO2500, 35mm, 1/60, f/5

The initial image suffered from 1 stop of under exposure, artifacts and banding(horizontal). It was processed in ACR6 and TopazDenoise v4 with intent to print full size(resolution). All in all, I'd say the final composite turned out very good. The total PP time for this image was approximately 15 mins. However, final IQ and PP times would have improved with better exposure(so next time perhaps).



Having achieved favorable results with the K20D, I'm now looking for K7 candidates(RAW files) that I could use to develop and refine a max ISO workflow also. So if you are interested in helping out, please PM me so we can make the necessary arrangements for the files.

The objective is to design a tutorial for K7 owners that would allow them to shoot at ISO3200(or higher) without compromise(reduced file size, b&w etc etc). And based on the results above, we have good reason to conclude such a goal possible.

JB
11-13-2010, 04:43 PM   #15
Veteran Member
Tommot1965's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Perth Western Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,026
Hmm

pixel Peeping is something I've been caught up in, and a addiction im trying to recover from...in film days there was no such thing as Pixel peeping...just good quality film with different ASA ratings..that later changed to ISO ratings, we just wanted fast lenses that would help us bump the shutter speed, also there was no such think as a soft focus lenses or 100% crops that have the shit picked out of them, that in the real world of printing off on a Bubble-jet printer you are never going to see....see where im going with this? ...but I digress.

High ISO noise....again its a fixation that we cant seem to overcome....as Todd has said . once the high ISO sensors become available, we suddenly seem to need it, even though most will still take their pictures at 100 ISO in broad daylight...do we need that high ISO capability for the one or two times it would be handy....its would be nice, but im not that desperate for it....

Im going to get to know my K7 a while longer..im going to work with its plus's and minus's to hopefully make me better at getting the shots im after...

I know this post is a bit of a soapbox spiel ....but im over the K5 already..and want new lenses for my K7 that will fit my K3...LMAO
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, dslr, iso, k10d, k7, noise, photography
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
High Noise at Low ISO? JGB Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 19 11-11-2010 07:39 PM
K-x high-ISO noise reduction: use it or do it in PP instead? richardm Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 5 10-28-2010 08:45 AM
K7 high iso noise comparison cyy47 Pentax DSLR Discussion 24 08-02-2010 02:19 AM
getting the most noise free high iso from k7 opiedog Pentax DSLR Discussion 40 03-27-2010 02:29 AM
More to KX high ISO than low noise telfish Pentax DSLR Discussion 1 02-11-2010 02:22 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:48 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top