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Old Jan 8, 2003, 3:21 PM   #1
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Default C-730 Noisy Photos - Comparison shots with C-4000

Some of you may read DPReview.com, I've posted a lot over there, this is my first post here on these forums..

My c-730 Saga is documented in these links:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...essage=3868735
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...essage=3966290
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...essage=4003721

Needless to say, i've been very unhappy with the quality of the photos that it takes. I purchased a C-4000 instead and I couldn't have been happier since. So over the holidays I decided to put the two cameras head to head....

First let me say a few things. Granted the C-4000 is 4.1 mp, vs. the 3.1 of the C-730, so photo detail will be improved. However on the 4000, 200 ISO makes photos that are actually visable w/very little noise, the compression is general less noisy, the autofocus works and is much faster than that of the 730, chromatic aberation is drastically less w/the 4000. Overall the C-4000 wins hands down in my book.

Not sure why my C-730 photos that looked so poor, but Olympus claimed twice (yes I sent the camera to them 2 times) that all was in spec...

You be the judge...... Following is a comparison, both photos were taken in the exact same conditions.

Exposure time: 1/30
F-stop: 2.8
ISO speed: 100
Flash: 25

First the C-730...



And the C-4000...


You be the judge!

Todd
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Old Jan 8, 2003, 4:04 PM   #2
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The bottom photo (C4000z) is clearly superior. I can almost smell the apple pie!
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Old Jan 8, 2003, 4:52 PM   #3
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The bottom photo is much clearer and less noise. Look at the candle in the window, the reflection off the pane of glass.
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Old Jan 8, 2003, 5:06 PM   #4
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Glad you guys see a difference! I've sent the C-730 camera to Olympus 2 times! once to be repaired and a second time to Corporate Tech support, both times they tell me there is nothing wrong with the camera!!

I told them i did a comparison photo shoot (as you see above) and they want to see the photos now..

-Todd
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Old Jan 8, 2003, 6:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goobie
The bottom photo (C4000z) is clearly superior. I can almost smell the apple pie!
Hhhahaha..aside from the apple pie, I'm smelling everthing else, chocolates and all!!

Nice photo!!
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Old Jan 9, 2003, 6:06 PM   #6
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I took a close look at some details from these under 3X and 4X magnification. I don't think there's all that much in it for noise and the jpeg effects are similar. The C4000 pics are a little cleaner, but no more that you'd expect given the difference in the CCD sizes. For me, the difference mainly comes from the sharpness of the image (the C4000 is much sharper) and the greater saturation and contrast of the C4000 image. Also, I think the C730 image is slightly over-exposed.

Were both cameras tweaked with the same sharpness/contrast/saturation settings?

I suspect the visible differences between the two may be down to the nature of the lenses in the two cameras: the extended zoom range of the C730 may well have a price tag in terms of image quality, particularly at certain focal lengths. There is no EXIF data with the pics, but the degree of vertical perspective distortion leads me to suspect a wide angle setting and if they were shot on auto, the lens would have been wide open. This is a worst-case scenario for lens performance. You might like to repeat the test with the focal length around 50-80mm (35mm equivalent) using aperture priority with the lens stopped down to f5.6 - f8. If the difference between the two is significantly reduced, it would indicate differences in lens performance rather than noise problems.

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Old Jan 10, 2003, 4:34 PM   #7
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Fenlander,
Here are some answers to your questions/comments:


Quote:
Originally Posted by fenlander
I took a close look at some details from these under 3X and 4X magnification. I don't think there's all that much in it for noise and the jpeg effects are similar.
I'm surprised at that comment, specifically look at the amount of grain in the wood of the table, and in the black of the laptop. I doubt this has to do with CCD size as my father had a 3.0mp C-3000 and it took photos closer to that of the 4000 than the 730. My guess is, and as you stated, the lense is the culprit. Squeezing a 10x zoom on that CCD makes you loose detail and get more chromatic aberation.. speaking of which the aberation on the 730 in my book is unacceptable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fenlander
Were both cameras tweaked with the same sharpness/contrast/saturation settings?
Yes, all settings were set to 0, such to produce a true side by side. I took multiple photos, some with auto ISO, some with ISO100, flash, no flash, etc. I have 6 photos in total that I did in the test.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fenlander
There is no EXIF data with the pics, but the degree of vertical perspective distortion leads me to suspect a wide angle setting and if they were shot on auto, the lens would have been wide open.
Exif must have been removed when i cropped the photos.. in anycase, The EXIF info is below. Woth were shot at wide angle, ISO100, no zoom. You'll notice that everything matches.. Don't even ask me about the C-730 "auto" mode, it is the biggest joke... puts photos up to 200+ ISO! I know i put down the C-730 quite a bit, but you wouldn't believe how much I've played around w/the camera, no matter what I do, i can't get a clear photo.. always blurry and not sharp.. Also, macro mode on the 730 has trouble focusing, the 4000 is a champ at that.

C-730:
Original date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Exposure time: 1/30
F-stop: 2.8
ISO speed: 100
Focal length: 5.9000
Flash: 25
Orientation: Top-left
Light source: Unknown
Exposure bias: 0.0000
Metering mode: Pattern
Exposure program: Normal
Digitized date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Modified date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Image description: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Scene type: Photograph
User comment:
Compression: 6
Camera make: OLYMPUS OPTICAL CO.,LTD
Camera model: C730UZ
X resolution: 72.0000
Y resolution: 72.0000
Resolution unit: Inches
Camera version: v556u-77
Colorspace: sRGB
File source: DSC




C-4000:

Original date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Exposure time: 1/30
F-stop: 2.8
ISO speed: 100
Focal length: 6.8000
Flash: 25
Orientation: Top-left
Light source: Unknown
Exposure bias: 0.0000
Metering mode: Pattern
Exposure program: Normal
Digitized date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Modified date/time: 0000:00:00 00:00:00
Image description: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Scene type: Photograph
User comment:
Compression: 6
Camera make: OLYMPUS OPTICAL CO.,LTD
Camera model: C4100Z,C4000Z
X resolution: 72.0000
Y resolution: 72.0000
Resolution unit: Inches
Camera version: v575u-77
Colorspace: sRGB
File source: DSC

Todd
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Old Jan 10, 2003, 6:43 PM   #8
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I was pretty unimpressed with the chromo on the C4000 until someone pointed out that what I was talking about mostly wasn't chromo at all, but lens flare. I have some really spectacular examples of lens flare! Judging from your pics, the problem is also present with the C730 - and probably worse.

The EXIF confirms wide angle and wide open lenses in both pics. Years ago, Amateur Photographer magazine used to publish lens test series for cameras under review: the test picture was a ship moored on the Thames, taken from the other side of the river. They were an object lesson in why you should always avoid wide apertures wherever possible. Digicam lenses seem to have a whole raft of extra problems that 35mm cameras rarely suffered. The fall off in crispness in the corners (and edges) of the frame can be very noticeable; they suffer from flare and pincushion and barrel distortions make any sort of architectural photograph a sure candidate for post-processing corrective work.

It would still be interesting to see these test shots repeated at f5.6 and f8. I'd also use exposure bracketing at .3 stop increments to see if there is a difference in the way the two cameras expose the scene.

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Old Jan 12, 2003, 7:06 AM   #9
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Very interesting comparisons and detailed info. I also notice the reflection of the candle light on the table with the c4000 and its colour is more natural.

Great works wdwms and great comments with debates from other members !


Harry
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Old Jan 13, 2003, 7:12 PM   #10
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hey wdwms
i sent you private message
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