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Old Apr 28, 2005, 11:21 PM   #1
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I decided to test the A200's low-light capability by taking a landscape shot by moonlight - 800ISO, f2.8, 4 sec.

Even though our eyes can't identify colours in moonlight, the grass still looks green and the red car is visible behind the black car.

Not surpisingly the unprocessed result is quite noisy (top photo).

In the lower half you see the result after processing in the freeware Picture Cooler (http://denoiser.shorturl.com). Even though I saved the lower one from the RAW at +1 EV, it still looks much less noisy.

Mike


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Old Apr 29, 2005, 3:19 AM   #2
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Just a question : Why is your photo so noisy?
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Old Apr 29, 2005, 5:23 AM   #3
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Moonlight is very dim - although the brighter parts (white truck, green roof on the right) aren't all that noisy.

Mike
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Old Apr 29, 2005, 8:20 AM   #4
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Try one of the products like Noiseware. I think you'll find it does a better job. They have a stand alone "Community Edition" version that is free (but it strips out the EXIF). Other versions are not free.

http://www.imagenomic.com/download.asp

Of course, shooting at ISO 800 is not a good idea. ;-) I'd set ISO speed lower and use a longer exposure.
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Old Apr 29, 2005, 9:44 AM   #5
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P.S. -- In addition to setting ISO speed to lower value and using a longer exposure, I'd make sure to turn Anti-Shake off, and make sure the camera is cool. Noise is worse as the CCD temperature increases.




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Old Apr 29, 2005, 5:07 PM   #6
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I must try taking different combinations of ISO and Shutter to see whether long exposures cause more noise than high ISO settings. In this shot I used 4 seconds to minimise blur people walking in front of the church.

I didn't bother turning AS off, because I assumed that on a tripod, the Acceleration sensors (which draw negligible power)would tell the CCD mount to not move at all and therefore not create heat - but it's worth testing.

If I am not under pressure, then I will set up the camera for the shot, turn it off for a couple of minutes to let everything cool, turn it on and quickly take the photo. For multiple photos requiring long exposure I will turn the camera off between shots.

I have a couple of ND8 filters, so I will be able to simulate low-light shots during the day.

Mike
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Old Apr 29, 2005, 6:55 PM   #7
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Mike:

I saw a LOT of long exposure tests when the A1 was first introduced, (and more when the A2 was introduced).

Konica-Minolta specifically recommended turning AS off when the camera was mounted on a tripod (and since I saw the EXIF with a 4 second exposure, I realized that you used a tripod).

Likewise, when many users were complaining about noise, Konica-Minolta pointed out that AS could also impact CCD temperature.

I've seen much older tests on this issue (noise increases with CCD temperature).

So, there is little doubt in my mind that it's perfectly valid.

Let us know what you find with your tests.

Edit/Added:

It may take much longer than a "couple of minutes" before a camera cools off.




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