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Thread: My quick D800 versus E test

  1. #51
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    I suspect it is more the opposite -- that this new (and IMHO clever) AA filter arrangement creates far less image degradation while still removing undesirable digital sampling artifacts like moire. So when removed, we only see the very marginal improvement we're seeing.
    Jack, I guess it could be seen both ways. Either Nikon's implementation of the AA filter on the regular D800 has had little effect on image degredation compared to AA filter removal, regardless of which method AA removal was implemented OR alternatively, the way they implemented AA removal on the D800E resulted in far less improvement in sharpness/detail as compared to other alternative methods of aftermarket AA filter removal.

    One of the ways this question might be answered is when someone opts to have their regular D800 AA filter removed, by one of the companies that perform this modification regulary on DSLR's and of course have the opportunity to compare this modified D800 to the native D800E. I'm sure down the road, there might be some who will have the AA filter removed from their D800.

    I may be wrong, but if I was to take a guess now, I would say aftermarket removal of the D800 AA filter will result in a bit of increase in sharpness over the native D800E (and thus a noticable increase increase in sharpness over the D800)....and that the way Nikon implemented AA filter removal in the D800E was done in such a way as to sacrifice a bit of additional sharpness and yet somehow as a consequence of this modified way of removing the AA filter, also reduced the occurance of moire' to a degree over other methods of AA removal. The part about reducing some of the occurance of moire' in their D800E AA filterless camera is an assumption but I know Nikon would be sensitive about marketing a camera where it's occurance would have been seen quite frequently (for obvious reasons). Then again consistancy in assembly of both cameras (D800 & D800E) probably also played a role. So in other words they somehow developed a conservative approach to what is essentually AA filter removal with some possible +/-tradeoffs, as I just surmised.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Senior Subscriber Member Steen's Avatar
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    My quick D800 versus E test


    Those of you who have for years been shooting cameras without AA filters, cameras like DMR, M8, M9 and S2, and 645D and all the different Medium Format Digital Backs, do you usually add a tad of sharpness in post processing ?

    I had an M8 with a couple of Leica M lenses for a while, but it's been so long now that I no longer recall my post processing habits with that camera, so I'd be curious to know what you usually do in post with regards to adding sharpness.

  3. #53
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Steen View Post
    Those of you who have for years been shooting cameras without AA filters, cameras like DMR, M8, M9 and S2, and 645D and all the different Medium Format Digital Backs, do you usually add a tad of sharpness in post processing ?

    I had an M8 with a couple of Leica M lenses for a while, but it's been so long now that I no longer recall my post processing habits with that camera, so I'd be curious to know what you usually do in post with regards to adding sharpness.
    I sometimes have some sharpening when doing the raw conversion. Not much though.

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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    With the M9 and IQ180, I add no "capture sharpening". I only sharpen on output (to print or screen).
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Steen View Post
    Those of you who have for years been shooting cameras without AA filters, cameras like DMR, M8, M9 and S2, and 645D and all the different Medium Format Digital Backs, do you usually add a tad of sharpness in post processing ?

    I had an M8 with a couple of Leica M lenses for a while, but it's been so long now that I no longer recall my post processing habits with that camera, so I'd be curious to know what you usually do in post with regards to adding sharpness.
    Depended on the back and camera. With the P25 and P45+ and M8/9 yes, less with the M9. With the P65+/IQ160 and IQ180, it is capture sharpening only most of the time and only specific output sharpening as required for the image/output combo. So here I work the file at the opposite end compared to Joe. Note also that the P65+/IQ160 required very little capture sharpening to begin with, while the IQ180 needs a little extra boost for my tastes.
    Jack
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Steen View Post
    Those of you who have for years been shooting cameras without AA filters, cameras like DMR, M8, M9 and S2, and 645D and all the different Medium Format Digital Backs, do you usually add a tad of sharpness in post processing
    For my 645D, yes. For my P25+, usually no.

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Steen View Post
    Those of you who have for years been shooting cameras without AA filters, cameras like DMR, M8, M9 and S2, and 645D and all the different Medium Format Digital Backs, do you usually add a tad of sharpness in post processing
    On the DMR I added edge sharpening only. Anything else was too much.

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    No offence Tim but those are funny looking boats, just kidding love the contrast of colors of this scene, you have so many great photo ops on that side of the pond, thanks for sharing these Tim
    Congrats on the gear!
    Last edited by Dan Bellyk; 24th April 2012 at 06:42.

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    Senior Member bab's Avatar
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    If you look in the center window on the green house you can see clearly on the #60 image right through the glass but on the #19 image the glass appears to look like a foggy window there is the best example I see of micro-contrast.

    Also the green siding on the house looks sharper or you can see the paint pealing and the other image looks like there is some smoothing applied.

    Additionally the bird wires (?) of the chimney and roof corner are CA'd in the #19 or out of focus and in the #60 image there sharper and no CA.

    Regards

    Barry

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    @ Barry, I am with you on this: even given the bolder light in the #60 shot, there is still subtly more detail in a host of ways. Whilst the E version isn't dramatically sharper, like say comparing an M9 and a 5DII, the differences are there and they are significant.

    @ Dan thanks! This is a relatively modest resort so none of Guy's fancy marina shots here!

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Tim, Barry -- be careful guys, methinks you appear to be drinking the koolaid

    Seriously, let's quantify the term "significant difference." To me, if it won't be seen in a typical large print, it isn't significant. So I am holding judgement until I have a comparative set of raw files in my hand to process optimally from start to finish and then print to compare the result side-by-side. If I then see a difference, I'll capitulate. But until then, I am sticking to "visible but marginal" gain.

    and Cheers,
    Jack
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    have already picked up the D800E today
    my reasoning behind is simple
    what is lost from the AA filter can never be retrieved (dont be silly enough to think a few clicks on the sharpening will magically undo the AA filter)
    and from pass experiences with Medium Format (from Mamiya to Hasselblad that I still own and use), Moire is very rarely an issue serious enough to trash a picture

    I just tested the D800E shooting straight on a piece of fabric, I tried it with 3 different lenses, the 24-70, 135 f2, and 200 f2, yes the Moire is there and more apparent on the sharper 200 f2, but no its not that bad
    for those of you who are still thinking E or no E, go with the E unless you are a professional fabric shooter

  13. #63
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    If I would buy now I would pick up the E. But I have the D800 (non E) and think can well live with it. More worried about image content now that makes good use of the resolution.
    Uwe Steinmueller
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test


    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post

    I suspect it is more the opposite -- that this new (and IMHO clever) AA filter arrangement creates far less image degradation while still removing undesirable digital sampling artifacts like moire. So when removed, we only see the very marginal improvement we're seeing.

    Jack, are you saying that the 'ordinary' optical low-pass filter of the D800 Standard model is in fact some kind of a new arrangement and design (and maybe even patent) by Nikon ?

    I thought it was just the same good old classic construction of an Anti-Aliasing filter (though I've actually never known before how they really worked) ?

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Steen View Post



    Jack, are you saying that the 'ordinary' optical low-pass filter of the D800 Standard model is in fact some kind of a new arrangement and design (and maybe even patent) by Nikon ?

    I thought it was just the same good old classic construction of an Anti-Aliasing filter (though I've actually never known before how they really worked) ?
    Yes, it's a new design -- and clever. I am no engineer, but it appears with the current arrangement they can tune the amount of blur to a very precise level, like say to just at the Nyquist limit, thereby creating a close-to-ideal AA filter for any sensor. I believe it is why you still find some very slight moire in the D800 on occasion -- slightly visible at 100% view but un-noticeable in a print or web output, the perfect compromise.
    Jack
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    Yes, it's a new design -- and clever.
    I'm not sure what aspects are new. It looks to me like the standard design that's been used for a long time. See the description of opticl low pass filters here.

    I agree that it seems to be particularly well implemented. Although part of what makes this easy is simply the high resolution of the camera. More linear resolution means you need less blur. It also means that the unwanted (visible) effects of the filter will effect frequencies where there's rarely much useful optical information from the lens.

    The basic strugle with anti aliassing filters, whether in optics or in audio, is that perfect analog filters are impossible to design. A perfect one would be a brick-wall filter ... one that blocks everything above the chosen frequency, and lets everything below that frequency through, completely unimpared.

    Since no one knows how to make such a thing, engineers compromise. The effect of a real filter corresponds to a curve, not a wall. The nyquist limit is placed somewhere in the middle of that curve. This means that detail a little above that limit, if the contrast is high enough, can still cause visible aliasing. And detail a little below that limit will be blurred. The game the enginners play is to design as steep a curve as possible, and then carefully balance the strength and center frequency of the filter to give the best performance over the reange of likely uses.

    Still we see a subtle difference between the filtered and filterless cameras. If we could have a perfect filter there would be none.

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    Senior Subscriber Member Steen's Avatar
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    My quick D800 versus E test


    It's difficult to judge much out of the Wikipedia link you posted, Paul, since it has no illustration to support the very short description.

    Maybe useful to repeat here the link that Jack already provided back in post # 48.

    http://www.nikonusa.com/en_US/IMG/Im..._schematic.pdf



    Could it be the Waveplate that is the new 'solution part' of the arrangement, at least it got its own specific note in the illustration ... ?



    "OLPF schematic" by nikonusa.com (here downsized and linked to the original):





  18. #68
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    I don't think the waveplate is new. it's basically a circular polarizer, which is necessary after the light passes through the first low pass filter.

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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    AIUI, none of the individual components are new or unique, but the arrangement with the waveplate is.
    Jack
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    To my eyes, I'm left feeling underwhelmed at the differences the much hyped AA filter free D800E produces. Not sure if to be unimpressed at how little sharper the 800E is or impressed at how sharp the regular D800 is.

    What I find most distracting about both these shots and I'm not sure if its a jpeg compression, processing, lighting, lens or exposure thing but some of the bright white and highlight areas of the images have an unusual and unpleasant "glow" to them. Reminds me of Nikon D100/D200's of old.

  21. #71
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    I felt I could see a difference even just at the default "full screen" size of my little MacBook Air, in Safari. I brought both images up and used Command-` between the images. I identified the one ending in "60" as the E version.

    I then clicked on the images to magnify them to 100% and was certain that "60" is the E version. Definitely more detail.

    I have no dog in this hunt. I will never own either of these cameras. I have no use for 36MP images (shocking on this site, I know ). But the difference was obvious and clear to me.

  22. #72
    julianv
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    Re: My quick D800 versus E test

    From what I understand, the OLPF used in the D800 is a design that Nikon patented about 10 years ago.

    Patent US6392803 - Optical filter and optical device provided with this optical filter - Google Patents

    This is probably similar to the OLPF in other recent Nikon DSLRs. I think Canon uses a similar construction, so maybe they are paying royalties, or cross-licensing patents with Nikon.

    The configuration in the D800E, where the birefringent layers are oriented to cancel each other out, might be new and unique. I don't know if this has been patented.
    Last edited by julianv; 6th May 2012 at 20:28.

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