DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Discussion about Ricoh GR Digital II

DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby odklizec » Sun Dec 02, 2007 3:56 am

Today I did a small test with GRDII and E400. The purpose of this test was to find if the GRDII photos taken in RAW can match with DSLR JPEG? ;)
Of course, none small sensor camera can beat the DSLR and I'm perfectly aware of that. Definitely not in terms of noise performance or dynamic range! But let's say you cannot/don't want to take your trusty DSLR everywhere with you and you still want to take some reasonable quality photos? So I did this small DSLR JPEG/GRD RAW test and it's up to you how you will interpret these results?

Many will say comparing JPEG with RAW is like mixing apples and oranges. Yes, I agree. But because DSLR JPEG output was always good enough for me, I was never forced to use RAW. And because I found that the best result from GRD/GRDII can be obtained from RAW, hence such strange comparison.

Both cameras were set to f3.5 (largest E400 kit lens aperture), ISO400 and focused at the same point (jar with mushrooms). The unsharp objects in E400 photo are not caused by a camera shake or misfocus, but by larger E400 sensor and its smaller depth of field (comparing with GRD small sensor with huge DOF). The GRD RAW was processed with Silkypix (processing parameters are included in the below 7zip file containing DNG).

And what's the result? Except some banding at GRD2 side, I found the RAW file (if well processed) perfectly usable and comparable with DSLR JPEG. Sure, there is more noise and the highlight are worse recoverable. But if you see the below crops (or both full sized files), you will realize that the differences are small. I will repeat this test also with ISO1600.

OK, here are the 100% crops:
Image

And here the full size files..
E400 JPEG:
PC016954.JPG

GRD2 JPEG from Silkypix
R0011824_silkypix_dng2.jpg

GRD2 DNG + Silkypix processing parameters
GRDII_E400_test.7z
(use 7zip to extract the file, MAC users should have to use one of >these<)
Pavel Kudrys
---
Flickr gallery:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/odklizec/
User avatar
odklizec
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6036
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 5:10 pm
Location: Today in Slovakia

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby wildeone » Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:01 am

thank you for all your hard work on this!!!

may i also be so bold as to ask for an outside shot comparison? i know the devil is in the details, but a majority of my photos are taken outside and i'd be more interested in that. a building, a tree, whatever... unless it's raining there as well, in which case you're off the hook for today ;)
wildeone
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:58 pm
Location: paris

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby odklizec » Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:55 am

Yeah, I would also like to know the "outside" performance. The problem is that the actual weather is full of rain, gray sky and mud everywhere :( Too bad conditions for shooting outside. This is why I'm doing all these "inside" tests. It's now the only chance to do something constructive. I hope for some snow soon ;)
Pavel Kudrys
---
Flickr gallery:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/odklizec/
User avatar
odklizec
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6036
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 5:10 pm
Location: Today in Slovakia

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby rashomon » Sun Dec 02, 2007 12:37 pm

Great work Pavel! Although there's a slight difference in the exposure and WB, looks like the 4/3 sensor takes the cake. But that's to be expected. The GRDII is definitely the choice to take when the big boy needs to stay at home. ;) Thanks for testing.
rashomon
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Nov 25, 2007 9:54 pm

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby jorgeAD » Sun Dec 02, 2007 5:12 pm

Ye little devil !!

Many a technical moguls will cry FOUL! since its RAW vs. JPG and near optimal aperture on the GRD2 vs wide open in the E400... Still I think the test holds some real world wisdom in showing that at ISO 400 the GRD2 RAW files will hold their own against a 2/3 camera...

You mention loss of dynamic range. This is one of my remaining concerns. Any ideas how much underexposure the GRD2 RAW will stand before breaking up in the shadows ?

Very interesting indeed thanks!!

Jorge
jorgeAD
 
Posts: 23
Joined: Sun Nov 25, 2007 7:02 pm

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby odklizec » Sun Dec 02, 2007 7:19 pm

Of course, this is not "fair" test. Maybe even the word "test" is overrated here :D I will try to repeat this "comparison" with optimal apertures both for GRD (which I believe is about f5.6) and E400 (let's say f8).

What I did here was mainly an attempt to show the usability of small sensor camera with RAW writing. This test should definitely not suggest that the GRD is better than DSLR. Definitely not! That would be really silly attempt ;) It just shows the usability of GRD RAW if compared with DSLR JPEG. If nothing else, then it shows the higher 4/3 sensor sensitivity and also the advantage of small GRD senor, which is higher DOF. Sure, this "advantage" is also a disadvantage if you want to separate the photographed subject from the rest of scene. But if shooting groups of people inside the room, one would have to use much higher aperture number on DSLR to get the same sharpness. But this will also increase the shutter time/ISO. So my conclusion from this "test" is that if you cannot take the DSLR with you, GRD at ISO400 and RAW can definitely help to get some well usable photos.

About underexposure, I have the GRD/GRD2 always set to -1/3EV. But in bright lightning conditions I would go to -0.7 or maybe even -1EV. But as there were no bright days entire last week (I only got both cameras last week), I could not test my theory yet ;) One can restore a good amount of highlights in RAW (as shown here). If shooting in JPEG, don't use too high Contrast! Even at default "0" it clips a lot of highlights!
Pavel Kudrys
---
Flickr gallery:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/odklizec/
User avatar
odklizec
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6036
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2007 5:10 pm
Location: Today in Slovakia

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby buzzard » Sun Dec 02, 2007 7:48 pm

thanks for the comparison. interesting.
buzzard
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 4:31 am

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby Gil » Mon Dec 03, 2007 6:18 am

Again I appreciate your hard work. I would not really want to make a comment on the test results except
to say that you have done good with what you had and I think your tests were fair.
There would probably be a truck load of other dSLR shooters who might take you to task on your comparison,
but I sure wouldn't. You have tried to provide as much data as you could to help people understand the new
camera's abilities and disabilities.

Gil
Gil
 
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2007 5:29 am
Location: Western NC, U.S.A

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby leews2001 » Mon Dec 03, 2007 6:36 am

this is a very good comparison! Thanks Pavel!

good on the grounds that, it allows one to decide whether the IQ improvement of larger sensor/body is worth the extra weight and reduced capture-opportunities/ease of operations when compared to the GRDs.
User avatar
leews2001
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2007 4:10 am

Re: DLSR vs GRD2 - for those looking for a DSLR backup camera

Postby lucridders » Thu Dec 06, 2007 11:53 am

I should compare JPEG with JPEG. Is not a fair compare at all and shows really nothing. Shows just that you are looking maybe to screw up the GRDII quality in a wrong way.
lucridders
 
Posts: 94
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:50 am

Next

Return to Ricoh GR Digital II

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest