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Old May 3, 2005, 5:44 AM   #1
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If you were to lower the contrast and saturation on a P200 to the -1 setting would your picture detail and sharpness increase, decrease or remain the same?I also have the samequestionif youuse the7 MP setting to take pictures instead of the 5 MP setting?
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Old May 3, 2005, 12:45 PM   #2
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From seeing comparison photos with older Sony models in this series (for example the DSC-W1 and P100), I would suggest lowering the contrast setting.

I have seen some complaints about images withthese models because they are a bit too "contrasty" using the default settings. Sometimes, this can make dark areas look too dark, because of the difference between the brightness in the lighter areas of a scene. This can add "punch" to an image, but tends to destroy real detail.

So, too much in camera contrast can make the image lose some detail in shadow and highlight areas (because the camera is making the lighter areas lighter, and the darker areas darker as you increase the amount of contrast being applied via it's image processing algorithms).

I can remember seeing a whole series of examples from the P100 a while back, showing that a -1 Contrast Setting was needed to get the equivalent amount of detail/brightness inthe shadow areas of the test images compared to an older Fuji point and shoot in the same conditions.

It actually took us a little while to figure out what was going on. When the user attempted to expose brighter (using a +EV setting with Exposure Compensation), to get the shadow areas looking as bright as the Fuji he was used to, it blew the highlights in the brighter areas.

We finally tried the contrast adjustment and that was the issue (too much contrast from the Sony image processing making shadow area too dark, and highlight areas too light compared to the camera he was using before).

So, I'd definitely suggest reducing it (since I doubt that Sony has changed it's image processing algorithms significantly in newer models). You can always increase things like contrast, sharpening and saturation later in post processing with software if needed to add more punch to your images. But, if you add too much of any of these parameters in the camera, you can lose detail from it that is not as easily recovered later.

Less is better (provided you don't mind tweaking the images later as needed for best results).

As for resolution, I'd suggest shooting the highest resolution mode your camera supports (ditto for JPEG Quality). Memory is cheap. ;-)
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Old May 3, 2005, 4:47 PM   #3
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Wow, thanks for that JimC, very informative indeed!
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Old May 3, 2005, 6:54 PM   #4
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Jim C:

Thanks for the info. I just want to be sure I understand. Are you suggesting that we lower all three -contrast, saturation and sharpening to -1, or just the contrast to -1 to get the best detail?
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Old May 3, 2005, 8:09 PM   #5
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My vote would be to lower all 3, then use software to adjust these as necessary for viewing or printing.

Some users prefer to leave these things as is, so that they don't have to worry about it later. That's what the manufacturers are going for (minimal post processing for those users that don't want to bother with editors).

But, for best results, I'd keep them set low and post process with software.
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Old May 3, 2005, 10:30 PM   #6
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:idea::?Some software arent that good. Colors can get blotchy. Also when crop, I feel that sharpness is a delicate setting.
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