Leica’s new black & white rangefinder, the M Monochrom, eschews the standard color filter found in ordinary camera sensors in order to capture higher quality monochrome photographs. How much of a difference does this make compared to the standard practice of converting color images to B&W? David Farkas over at Red Dot Forum decided to find out by doing a head-to-head comparison of the camera with a Leica M9. He photographed the same scene at different ISOs, and then published the photos with a nifty slider that lets you easily compare the resulting images. Here’s a spoiler: the difference is quite noticeable.
Can’t decide between the Canon 5D Mark III and Nikon D800? Dave Dugdale of Learning DSLR Video created this helpful video that offers a pretty comprehensive comparison of the cameras. It’s a bit heavy on the videography applications of the camera, but should be quite informative nevertheless if you’re at all interested in these cameras.
This video, done by The Camera Store with help from Roth and Ramberg, is sure to stir up some controversy. One side will say that 35mm couldn’t possibly compete with medium format, while the other will point out that the price difference makes the whole debate moot. In a way, they’re both right; but this comparison video does a great job of pointing out the benefits and pitfalls of each camera when it comes to skin tone, low light performance, and dynamic range.
Take a gander at the video and give us your take in the comments down below. (Keep in mind that image details won’t show up nearly as well in the video as they did in the studio).
The folks over at NoFilmSchool recently did a low light comparison of the Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 5D Mark III, and Nikon D800. The cameras were used to film the same dark candlelit scene with the same settings, and the ISO was slowly pushed up to the cameras’ respective limits. It’s pretty striking how big of a difference in low light/high ISO quality there is in the cameras, especially in light of DxO Lab’s test results for the cameras’ sensors…
Last week camera testing service DxOMark announced that the Nikon D800 had earned the highest sensor quality score ever awarded. Roger Cicala of LensRentals wanted to see for himself how much of an advantage the D800′s 36.3MP sensor had over its competition, so he did some sensor resolution tests on the camera, comparing it to the Canon 5D Mark III, 5D Mark II, and Nikon D700. His conclusion?
[...] there’s no question the D800 can actually get those pixels to show up in the final product (assuming your final product is a big print – they’re going to be wasted posting on your Facebook page). But you’d better have some really good glass in front of it. I don’t think the 28-300 superzooms are going to cut it with this camera.
In the real world, highest possible resolution is nice to know about and talk about, but usually not of critical importance compared to other factors. You’ll be able to make superb images with any decent lens for an 8 X 10 or even 11 X 16 print. But if you’re getting the camera because of the resolution, it makes sense to know which lenses will allow all of that resolution to be utilized. Just in case you get that job that needs billboard sized prints.
Bart Zoni of Leica Boss made this short video explaining the main differences between DSLR and mirrorless cameras. He discusses flange focal distance and sensor size, and how the cameras’ differences in those two things affect image quality.
Japanese website mono-logue released this short 30-second video comparing footage from the Canon 5D Mark II and the new 5D Mark III captured at ISO 12,800. The difference in noise levels is remarkable (be sure to watch it full screen and in HD). Read more…
Here’s a great diagram by Mobot that shows how the 41-megapixel sensor inside Nokia’s new 808 PureView phone stacks up against other popular sensor sizes. It’s pretty clear that they didn’t just milk a small sensor for more megapixels as a simply marketing ploy, but instead came up with a sensor that’s significantly larger than those found in other smartphones. Engadget also has a photo showing a comparison of sensor sizes, while Digital Trends has published an article on five reasons why the 41-megapixels isn’t a gimmick.
Devin Coldewey of TechCrunch created this helpful diagram showing the relative sizes of various sensors, including the one found inside the Lytro light field camera (a camera that lets you focus after shots are taken). The FCC published photos of the Lytro camera’s guts last week, revealing that the sensor inside is roughly 6.5×4.5mm (smaller than our previous estimate). This means that it’s slightly larger than the iPhone sensor and slightly smaller than the one in most point-and-shoot cameras.
Another interesting finding is that the chip inside supports Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. The company says that they’re working on wireless connectivity, but doesn’t have it enabled in the initial Lytro camera.
Want to see how far DSLRs have come in the past decade? Lee Morris of Fstoppers published these two photos taken at Super Bowl halftime shows. The crop on the left was captured in 2001, possibly with the Nikon D1H at 2.7 megapixels and ISO 800 (state of the art specs at the time). The slice on the right was from this past weekend, and was shot with a Nikon D3s at 12MP and ISO 12,800.
Image credits: Photographs by Lonny Krasnow/AP and FilmMagic