Having already posted an ISO Test for the Samsung Galaxy NX recently, where using the highest sharpening setting I managed to show the worst case scenario for Out Of Camera (OOC) JPEG results.
I thought this might put some people off from potentially buying this camera, as the results I get I am very happy with, so, I decided to do another ISO test, but this time, using the actual settings I use on my Samsung Galaxy NX. The first ISO Test, had maximum sharpness applied with NO in camera Noise Reduction for High ISO or Long Exposure.
Samsung Galaxy NX settings used: Sharpness +1, High ISO Noise Reduction LOW, Aperture Priority, Samsung 60mm F2.8 Lens used. Aperture set to f4.0, Manual Focus (please allow a small degree of focus shift as I refocused before each shot), Tripod Mounted. ISO 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800 and 25600 included in test. Natural Light only.
My trusted Sphero BB-8 was once again called upon to model.
I have tried to reflect as accurately as I can the results you can expect to achieve in real world use with the above settings. There are a large number of images included which have had to be optimised for Web Use, but checking side by side against the actual Full Sized images, there really isn’t much lost in ‘translation’.
I start with Out Of Camera Full view OOC JPEGS, OOC JPEG Crops at 100%, RAW Full views and finish with RAW Crops at 100% to give you the most thorough examples of what to expect.
With that said, here goes. . .
If you compare the above images, again all straight out of camera JPEGS, set to Superfine full resolution, High ISO Noise Reduction set to LOW, Noise is handled really well, especially for Web Use. It’s only really at ISO 25600, that you can actually start to see the noise and a slight colour shift is observed, but, even when the noise starts to show at the higher ISO, you have an image that can be used for online purposes.
Let’s have a look at the 100% Crops of each ISO. . .
As can be seen from the 100% Crops, High ISO Noise reduction set to LOW controls the noise well up to ISO 6400 with only a slight grain visible. ISO 12800 is noisier but the detail is still preserved fairly well, look at the little scratches on BB-8’s eye, the eye scratches are still visible even on the ISO 25600 image where noise is more obvious.
In reality, full sized images wouldn’t be used for online purposes and as I hope the above examples show, images up to the maximum ISO 25600 could be used with little complaint (depending on purpose).
So, that was the OOC JPEG results. How about the RAW files?
The following RAW files were converted from SRW (Samsung’s own RAW File Format) into DNG files via Samsung’s Dedicated DNG converter programme. The DNG files were opened in Photoshop CS 6 then ‘Save As’ and Optimised JPEG (the site doesn’t allow DNG or SRW files to be uploaded, besides each file was over 57MB in size so would have taken months to upload on my broadband connection). I’ve carried out a side by side comparison and the following images are a very accurate representation of the actual RAW files obtained.
No post processing was applied, so these are as close to what comes out of the Samsung Galaxy NX RAW files as I can represent here.
So, here goes. First Full View RAW. . .
As can be seen more clearly, noise is visible earlier and a slight colour shift starts to appear at ISO 6400, compared to the OOC JPEGS, although, the light was changing as it was cloudy outside, which may have added to the slight colour shift.
Here are the RAWs at 100% Crop. . .
As you can see, unprocessed RAW files at the higher ISO are noisier, as is to be expected, but up to an including ISO 6400 are well detailed and at ISO 6400, with a small amount of Noise Reduction applied in post processing, isn’t really a problem.
If Noise Reduction is applied and the images at the higher two ISO settings are resized (downscaled) from 20.3MP images to around 12- 16MP, Noise really isn’t an issue on any ISO setting. The higher the ISO Noise, downsize the image a touch more to compensate, so ISO 12800 down to @14 – 16MP, ISO 25600 down to 12 -14MP depending on your own specific needs.
Any way, I hope you find this Real World ISO Test helpful and hope the original ISO Test, where I tried to demonstrate the worse case scenario is put into some perspective.