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Old Jun 12, 2006, 8:47 PM   #1
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I love lightning, I've been shooting lightning pictures for 20 years, the past two on digital. I've successfully shot lightning with a Cannon point and shoot, Cannon EOS Rebel and lately the Pentax istDL. The Pentax' noise reduction means if you hold the shutter open for two minutes, you wait two minutes for noise reduction to work. When I shot lightning with the Rebel it didn't take all that time to do noise reduction and I still got good lightning from it. I tried turning noise reduction off on the Pentax the other day and got pink ugly noise so that's not an option. So questions.What's the difference between the Rebel's noise reduction and the istDL's?Anyone who turns off noise reduction on the Pentax, what do you use to process your pictures, especially time exposures?This is a lightning shot I got last weekend on a wimpy little storm that was dying rapidly.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 12:02 AM   #2
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Hope you don't mind, but I ran your photo through Neat Image. There's a free version that is a stand-alone program, or you can pay for the full version and it works as a plug-in for Photoshop. My last camera was a Panasonic FZ30 that's a very noisy camera, so I bought the full version. Makes a big difference - this is what it came up with using the auto settings.

Very nice photo, by the way!
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 11:14 AM   #3
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Wow, I'm impressed, thanks, Mtngal. That really reduced the noise. I've run photos through the "depixilate" filter on Photoshop but that blurs the photo too much, this reduced the noise and left the detail intact. The original photo was shot with a Promaster 70-300 zoom set at about 250 mm. The camera was set at an ISO of 800 and I cropped the image some. Does anyone out there use their istD with noise reduction turned off and if so, what do you do to photos afterward? Here is the other lightning shot I got that night
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 12:14 PM   #4
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i ran these thru noiseninja once and then used the despeckle filter in PSonce. if mtngal just ran it thru neat image once then i might be in the market for a new program.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 12:14 PM   #5
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 3:53 PM   #6
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I'm at work so I'll have to play with the second photo when I get home. As far as what I did - I didn't do anything more to it other than run Neat Image on it's default settings and 100% for both chromatic and luminous (is that right? - the program is at home and now I'm not sure what they are called). I didn't use anything else in Photoshop (I haven't hadmuch luck with Photoshop's noise reduction filter). Just my opinion, but I'm not sure I would have gone quite so far with the noise reduction as I did. I think something between what Neat Image and Noise Ninja did would be best - a bit of noise is better than the "watercolor" effect you get with max reduction. When I get home this evening I'll try the second picture and see what happens if I set it for less than 100%.

I've never used Noise Ninja - tried Neat Image, liked it and stuck with it. You can either let the program analyze each photo or else set up profiles that match your camera's ISO settings to use on photos without a spot that can be analyzed. I assume that Noise Ninja does the same thing?
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 5:08 PM   #7
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HI Guys

Heres the second picture. i ran It throught Neat Image Home +. This is with a second pass.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 5:11 PM   #8
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This with a single pass
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Old Jun 14, 2006, 3:05 AM   #9
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Well since everyone is redoing the photo I thought I might give it a try. The program that I am using is called Noiseware and can be found at imagenomic.com. This is the free version of the program. I came across this program from MaxiumPC, they gave it a good review and I thought I tried it. It seems to be a pretty good program even the free version.

This is a single pass


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Old Jun 14, 2006, 7:14 AM   #10
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jhacker wrote:
Quote:
The camera was set at an ISO of 800 and I cropped the image some. Does anyone out there use their istD with noise reduction turned off and if so, what do you do to photos afterward?� � �� �Here is the other lightning shot I got that night
Here is the problem. Try using it at ISO200 for your lightning shots, and turn the noise reduction off, and use one of the free noise reduction tools (or the new one in CS2 which works quite well).

Although, I often find that i get better results trying to get lighting with shorter exposures, around 20-30 seconds.
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