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Thread started 17 Dec 2013 (Tuesday) 16:26
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Do you think we're approaching a plateau in DSLR technology?

 
pwm2
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Dec 23, 2013 03:51 |  #76

davidc502 wrote in post #16545860 (external link)
Canon has hovered around 22megapixels from some time for their 35mm digital sensors.

And will stay there until they have a suitable fab available to make sensors with more, and smaller, ADC closer to the individual pixels. Canon produces the sensors it's able to manufacture - not the sensors technology allows.


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Dec 23, 2013 03:55 |  #77

pwm2 wrote in post #16548451 (external link)
But our eyes doesn't see individual colors - they still operate with red, green and blue.

True, but there's more to it than that, although I have to say that my interest in such a facility isn't quite mainstream.

These days, in the field of fluorescence microscopy, it's possible to label molecules with quantum dots that fluoresce in quite narrow wavelengths, and so it's possible to have a large number of distinct fluorophores present. Isolating the signals for each is just not possible without doing multiple exposures using different filters for each fluorophore since with just an RGB sensor, it is not possible, for example, to distinguish yellow from the overlap of red and green.

And your eyes doesn't see 24 stops of dynamic range at the same time.

But the brain does, by integrating over time, and that is where vision takes place. If an image contained such a large DR, even if our eye could not encompass the entire scene at that level, it could discern it in each portion of the image as it was scanned, and we would "see", with our brains, the full DR present in the complete image. Whichever part of the image we were attending to would be seen in the maximum DR the eye was capable of, even if a different part f the scene was much brighter or darker.




  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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Dec 23, 2013 03:56 |  #78

iamascientist wrote in post #16545589 (external link)
The bottom line is that whats available now is capable of doing pretty much whatever people want.

Not really. I have lots & lots of ideas for some very different images I would love to create. Problem is, I can't make many of the images I see in my mind's eye because of the limitations of today's gear. For many of the images I want to make, much more advanced DSLRs and lenses are needed, not just wanted.

iamascientist wrote in post #16545589 (external link)
There will always be room for improvement, but how much more improvement is actually needed? Not desired, but actually needed?

I don't want gear at all. It's the images that I want. Photography is all about photographs, right? It is not about photographic gear. Gear is nothing more than a tool needed to make the desired image. A necessary evil, if you will.

If I could make all of the images I want to make with some ugly piece of crap camera that I get for $5 at a yard sale, then I would be completely content with that. Unfortunately, I can not make all of the images I want to make with such a camera. I cannot even make all of the images I want to make with the best gear in the world today.

Somebody better start making some greatly improved cameras and lenses real quick. And they better make them affordable to the masses. Otherwise, I will miss out on more of the images I want to create, and I am getting tired of seeing lots of incredible images in my mind's eye and not being able to capture all of them.


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Dec 23, 2013 04:00 |  #79

pwm2 wrote in post #16548466 (external link)
You are forgetting about the low-pass filter - with a sensor that outresolves the lens, we don't need any low-pass filter to remove moiré. And a number of lenses already manages well at way more than 20 MP.

There's but a handful, notable examples would be the Zeiss Otus 55mm and the 70-200mm II IS 2.8.

pwm2 wrote in post #16548472 (external link)
And will stay there until they have a suitable fab available to make sensors with more, and smaller, ADC closer to the individual pixels. Canon produces the sensors it's able to manufacture - not the sensors technology allows.

Not invented here syndrome. Often a fatal one for technology companies. Why is Canon above buying sensors from Sony?


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Dec 23, 2013 04:02 |  #80

I'm surprised to read about a possible plateau with the DSLR. I have a 450D and recently bought a compact, the SX50 HS. This compact camera makes sharper pictures than my 450D, even with post-processing the SLR can't win. Is there really so much improvement now? Is the autofocus of a DSLR capable of focussing in low light or less contrast?
I think (and hope) that in the near future it is not really a necessary to do post-processing.
And what about shadows and highlights? Here in Australia we have very bright light, it's a challenge to work with that. It's not always possible to photograph at the perfect hours of the day.
Another point is that more pixels means more MB's. I would like to see a solution for that.
This is what comes up in my mind at the moment, and I'm sure there is more space for improvement.




  
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Dec 23, 2013 04:11 |  #81

Lyn2011 wrote in post #16548496 (external link)
I'm surprised to read about a possible plateau with the DSLR. I have a 450D and recently bought a compact, the SX50 HS. This compact camera makes sharper pictures than my 450D, even with post-processing the SLR can't win. Is there really so much improvement now? Is the autofocus of a DSLR capable of focussing in low light or less contrast?
I think (and hope) that in the near future it is not really a necessary to do post-processing.
And what about shadows and highlights? Here in Australia we have very bright light, it's a challenge to work with that. It's not always possible to photograph at the perfect hours of the day.
Another point is that more pixels means more MB's. I would like to see a solution for that.
This is what comes up in my mind at the moment, and I'm sure there is more space for improvement.

your 450D must have really crappy glass and filters. I must see this to believe it.


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Dec 23, 2013 08:20 |  #82
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Charlie wrote in post #16548508 (external link)
your 450D must have really crappy glass and filters. I must see this to believe it.

Or maybe very poor technique. When that happens its always the DSLR fault right?;) I mean when your possibly AUTO pics look better what else is there to think?:o


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Dec 23, 2013 09:20 |  #83

Like everything else, technology will ALWAYS be advancing, no matter what the type of product we talk about. It wasn't long ago, I was using a .8 megapixel digital camera and I thought it was great, but technology has left that in the trash! I can remember reading about a 39mp digital camera (forget the brand  :o ... Hasselblad?) shortly after getting my 6mp Canon 10D and thought that was incredible.

I doubt it will be long before cameras like the 5DMKII are a thing long in the past ... "Are you still shooting with THAT old camera?" ... LOL!

Be it more megapixels, faster focus or any number of minor or major improvements, the future generation of digital cameras WILL BE the cameras everyone wants! ... until someone comes up with something that will replace the concept of "cameras" as a way to get a photo of something.

I'm still hoping they invent a camera that can make me a GOOD quality cup of coffee while I'm out shooting! :lol: :lol:


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Dec 23, 2013 09:31 |  #84

Tom Reichner wrote in post #16548486 (external link)
Not really. I have lots & lots of ideas for some very different images I would love to create. Problem is, I can't make many of the images I see in my mind's eye because of the limitations of today's gear. For many of the images I want to make, much more advanced DSLRs and lenses are needed, not just wanted.

I don't want gear at all. It's the images that I want. Photography is all about photographs, right? It is not about photographic gear. Gear is nothing more than a tool needed to make the desired image. A necessary evil, if you will.

If I could make all of the images I want to make with some ugly piece of crap camera that I get for $5 at a yard sale, then I would be completely content with that. Unfortunately, I can not make all of the images I want to make with such a camera. I cannot even make all of the images I want to make with the best gear in the world today.

Somebody better start making some greatly improved cameras and lenses real quick. And they better make them affordable to the masses. Otherwise, I will miss out on more of the images I want to create, and I am getting tired of seeing lots of incredible images in my mind's eye and not being able to capture all of them.

I know that you shoot wildlife and the standard requirements seem to be advanced autofocus and long lenses. I'm curious though, what is it that's holding you back with something like a 7d or 1dx and any long L lens?




  
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Dec 23, 2013 09:46 |  #85

iamascientist wrote in post #16548909 (external link)
I know that you shoot wildlife and the standard requirements seem to be advanced autofocus and long lenses. I'm curious though, what is it that's holding you back with something like a 7d or 1dx and any long L lens?

Dynamic range for me. I think it would be great to have a flawless in camera dr function.


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Dec 23, 2013 11:36 |  #86

iamascientist wrote in post #16548909 (external link)
I know that you shoot wildlife and the standard requirements seem to be advanced autofocus and long lenses. I'm curious though, what is it that's holding you back with something like a 7d or 1dx and any long L lens?

When I can handhold, I can get into positions very quickly, compared to how long it takes to re-set all 3 of the tripod legs for each new position. Unfortunately, today's DSLRs and IS lenses do not allow absolutely tack-sharp results when handholding, say, 800mm at 1/60th of a second, especially when one is out of breath from running up a hill and must shoot without anything to set the lens on for support. Or when one must hold the camera as high as one can in order to shoot over the foreground vegetation. One cannot always employ the "proper technique" of elbows on chest . . . especially when one is standing on tip-toes in order to get the camera high enough. Just try shooting 800mm at 1/60th of a second from your tip-toes after dashing about the terrain to get into position quickly. The results are not sharp at all, and if one needs every hair on a deer's face to be sharply and distinctively resolved, your will never be able to achieve such results at slow shutter speeds without a tripod or other support. I've been talking about 1/60th of a second - heck, there are times when my meter tells me I need 1/2 of a second to get the right exposure, even at high ISOs. If a deer, or bird, or whatever, is still, then I want to be able to capture an excellent image of it at such shutter speeds. And I want to be able to do it handheld, unsupported, at 600mm and beyond. If I can't do this, I will miss some of the shots I want.

Much of what happens in the wildlife world happens in very low light, at dawn and at dusk. And it often happens fast - if you have to take an extra half second (literally) to get into position or to steady the camera, you have missed the shot. Hence, many wildlife photos are of the more static, "portrait" variety, when what we all really want to capture are the action images.

Another severe limitation with my wildlife photography is depth of field. Often, I want as much of the frame to be in sharp focus as possible. Long lenses have an incredibly shallow depth of field. So, if shooting at 700mm, I want the main subject to be in perfect focus, and it is 25 feet away, it is almost impossible to make the secondary subject reasonably sharp if it is 45 feet away. Even f32 doesn't give acceptable results at all. It would be awesome if cameras would have almost unlimited ability to stop down. If it takes f450 to get everything sharp that I want sharp, then all lenses should have f450.

Another problem with today's DSLRs, and every other camera available, is the lack of mobility. You basically need to physically be in touch with your camera to use it. Even with the new DSLRs being compatible with smart phones for adjustments and so forth, one has to initially set the camera in position you want it to be in. Wouldn't it be so much better if cameras were able to be put anywhere, instantly, via remote control?

If I see a flock of ducks flying high overhead, I often know exactly what type of image I would like to capture. I want a photo taken from slightly above the ducks, showing the earth underneath them. I would like the camera to be roughly 2 feet in front of (and slightly above) the lead duck. I would like this duck to be large in the frame, and for all of the other ducks in formation to be successively smaller, but still in perfect, sharp focus. I then want the background (in this case, the wetland habitat far underneath them) to be in focus. Mind you, the duck's head is about 2 feet from the lens' front element, the further ducks will be 15 to 200 feet behind the lead duck, and the wetland habitat will be about 1,500 feet below the flock. Yet I want it all in focus.

To get an image like I just described, I would need to be able to (very quickly) get my camera way up in the air right in front of the duck, without hitting the duck. And without spooking the duck. And I would need the camera, once in place, to remain a constant 2 feet from the duck's head, no matter what type of acrobatic manoeuvres he performs while in flight. I would also be able to see exactly what the camera is seeing in real time, via an iPad or other such device. That way, if I saw that the composition would be a little better if I moved the camera about an inch and a half to the right, I would be able to do so via remote control.

If I am out photographing deer, and I see a buck enter a clear, fast, two-foot-deep creek to walk across it, I think, "Wow - it'd be great if I could instantly send my camera down into the creek, with the lens half in the water and half out of the water - and get the camera right out in front of him for head-onn shots. If I could shoot at, say, 100mm, with the camera about 15 feet in front of the buck, a half-under, half-above water image of him, as he walks thru the 2-foot-deep water, would be awesome!"

Think of how cool the resultant image would be! The bottom half of the image would show his legs under the water, as his hooves feel for solid footing on the slippery, uneven creek bottom. The top half of the image would show the part of him that was above water, his head and bust. It would capture his facial expressions as he feels his way thru the fast, powerful current. One would see the concentration in his eyes as he feels for solid footing amidst the forceful flow of the water.

To make this image, the camera and lens would have to be waterproof. And it would have to have a very advanced tracking system. If I find that 15 feet at 100mm is the right distance for framing the buck the way I want to, then the camera would have to be able to maintain that 15-foot distance as the buck walks toward it. This means that the camera would need to be able to compensate for the changing currents it encounters as it makes its was across the creek in front of the buck. It would have to remain aimed right at the buck at all times, so that no frames are lost as it gets swept around by the current. And it would have to maintain a constant depth, so that the lens is always 50% above the water and 50% below the water. Unless I choose to make it 42% above and 58% below, or 46% above and, well, you know what I mean. All of that would be completely adjustable, and within my control at all times.

Can you even imagine the technology that would be necessary for such photography to be possible, and affordable to someone such as myself? We are no where near such things, and have a long, long, long way to go before cameras will be good enough to enable us to take every image we want to take.

I really do not like having to work within the limitations of my gear - it would be much better if all of my gear was able to be used to capture my vision, the way I want to capture it. Everything I ever see, that I think would make a good photo, I want to be able to capture, and capture in a quality way. The gear we now have doesn't even allow me to take 1% of what I see in my mind's eye. I really hope we haven't hit a plateau . . . I need much better gear if I am ever going to take all of these awesome images I keep "seeing" on a daily basis.

You asked what is holding me back with a 1Dx or a 7D. Can you see how these bodies would be entirely incapable of doing the things I just described? I mean, they are not even in the ballpark.


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Dec 23, 2013 12:06 |  #87

Tom Reichner wrote in post #16549137 (external link)
You asked what is holding me back with a 1Dx or a 7D. Can you see how these bodies would be entirely incapable of doing the things I just described? I mean, they are not even in the ballpark.

It's not simply the camera holding you back from such images...it's technology in general that hasnt advanced to the point where you can basically controll it with your thoughts/technology. What you are asking for probably wont be available for photographers for a long while (not a large enough market to make it worthwhile). It will be more of a trickle down effect from other technologies.


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Dec 23, 2013 12:07 |  #88

pwm2 wrote in post #16548472 (external link)
And will stay there until they have a suitable fab available to make sensors with more, and smaller, ADC closer to the individual pixels. Canon produces the sensors it's able to manufacture - not the sensors technology allows.

One would think they have the technology now. I also have the S100 which is a 12.1MP. I don't know the exact size of the sensor contained inside, but it must be smaller than 4/3rds, so the pixel density compared to 35mm digital must be 10 times denser (a number totally guessed at).

So is Canon purposefully holding back on 35mm digital pixel density for the "look", or are they really held back by the technology?


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Dec 23, 2013 13:08 |  #89

Tom Reichner wrote in post #16549137 (external link)
You asked what is holding me back with a 1Dx or a 7D. Can you see how these bodies would be entirely incapable of doing the things I just described? I mean, they are not even in the ballpark.

Thanks for explaining all that Tom. I honestly dont have the answers for you, but I have to imagine these things will never become affordable, if they are ever brought to existence in the consumer marketplace.

It sounds like your in search for once in a lifetime wildlife shots that dont come easy, and theres no way around that unless you invent the robotics or pay someone else 100s of thousands in R&D. I'm sure someone out there has the ability to build your underwater deer/aerial bird rig or the robotic camera support, but I cant imagine such equipment would ever be available from a retailer, I mean, we are talking about super specialized/technical equipment here, equating to what they use on massive budget movie sets or TV programs like discovery channels earth series.

Also, it sounds like your wishes for that type of DOF control isnt realistic, if a lens for a 35mm sensor allowed for f128/f250, the resulting image would most certainly not live up to your sharpness criterion. That is way beyond the limit of diffraction.




  
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Dec 23, 2013 13:15 |  #90
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iamascientist wrote in post #16549323 (external link)
Thanks for explaining all that Tom. I honestly dont have the answers for you, but I have to imagine these things will never become affordable, if they are ever brought to existence in the consumer marketplace.

It sounds like your in search for once in a lifetime wildlife shots that dont come easy, and theres no way around that unless you invent the robotics or pay someone else 100s of thousands in R&D. I'm sure someone out there has the ability to build your underwater deer/aerial bird rig or the robotic camera support, but I cant imagine such equipment would ever be available from a retailer, I mean, we are talking about super specialized/technical equipment here, equating to what they use on massive budget movie sets or TV programs like discovery channels earth series.

Also, it sounds like your wishes for that type of DOF control isnt realistic, if a lens for a 35mm sensor allowed for f128/f250, the resulting image would most certainly not live up to your sharpness criterion. That is way beyond the limit of diffraction.


Thats exactly what I was thinking. The optics themselves can not make it possible.


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Do you think we're approaching a plateau in DSLR technology?
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