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Thread: The D800 and in-camera High ISO NR

  1. #1
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    The D800 and in-camera High ISO NR

    I recently posted this pic, and one of the comments alluded to background noise, which I concede is visible. However I didn't find the intensity intrusive, and I do acknowledge that noise perception is very subjective.

    I've pretty much turned off most in-camera editing, including setting High ISO NR to "Off', the manual stating that.....
    Noise reduction is performed only at sensitivities of 1600 and higher. The amount of noise reduction is less than the amount performed when Low is selected for High ISO NR.
    This shot was taken at ISO1100 so it escaped any in-camera editing.

    A fiddle with the image in RAW reveals that any sharpness lost with the NR adjustment seems fairly recoverable with a tweak in Sharpening. I guess I can invest several hours in a series of tests, but I was wondering what other D800 users felt about using the in-camera NR setting.

    PeeWee Portrait.jpg
    Last edited by Cage; 28-05-2014 at 1:31pm.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    This shot was taken at ISO1100 so it escaped any in-camera editing.
    Did it?

    Nikon have been known to tell a few white lies occasionally and from what I can gather some form of noise reduction may be applied to raw files.

    Personally, I never use the in camera settings for noise reduction or sharpening.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    As I said in the other thread, mine are both off, I will test tho, but seeing I shoot mainly at night maybe its not applicable with the example you have shown here, to my newbie eyes, that noise looks a lot like when I slide the sharpen way to the right in LR... in my whole 7 mths of exposure to dslr photography every time i see high iso nr and long exposure nr discussions most people seem to say they keep them turned off
    Steph

    D800E, Nikkor 14-24 F2.8, Nikkor AF-D 50mm F1.4, Samyang 24mm F1.4


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    Site Rules Breach - Permanent Ban dtmateojr's Avatar
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    Was the image underexposed?

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Noise set up in camera is both a moot point and can be left on without any restrictions later on ... as long as the original images are shot in raw mode(although there is one caveat)

    So no matter what NR settings you have in camera, the full effect of these settings is only realised fully if you shoot in jpg or tiff mode.

    LR won't recognise the in camera NR settings, it does it's own NR on a raw image.

    If you decide to use Capture NX2 to process the raw file, you can turn the in camera NR setting to off if you choose later on in PP.
    The one caveat is ViewNX2. it has no ability to tweak or turn on/off in camera NR settings. So if you first port of call for an NEF image is VNX2 for initial tweaking, any in camera NR setting applied as set in camera.
    If you then send that image too <name your software here>, the resultant jpg or tiff file will have had that NR applied.

    CaptureNX-D also has the ability to switch in camera NR settings to on/off, or tweak it as you wish.

    So your in camera setting should take into account what software and mode you shoot in too.

    The only in camera NR setting that you can't reset in any way is if you have LNR(long exposure NR) set to On.
    This is a completely different NR setting to the more commonly used chroma and grey noise reductions.

    I leave LNR to on, unless I want it off for a specific reason(eg, if I know I want to use any dark frame subtraction later on manually)
    LNR is just an automated dark frame subtraction, and because I'm lazy I like the automation of in camera LNR. It amounts to the same thing as using dark frames, as you need to shoot the darks manually anyhow(and they should be shot under the same environmental conditions as the actual image were.

    I have chroma/grey noise reduction always set to off, for the obvious reason that it can be tinkered with later in PP anyhow.

    If I were to shoot in jpg mode for any reason, I'd leave it to a very low/mild setting depending on conditions tho.
    Reasoning is that if I'm shooting in jpg mode, I'm feeling even lazier than normal so PPing is going to be a null event anyhow.

    ------------
    FWIW too:

    The 'noise' you see in the green blurred background isn't really noise as such, it's the effect of chroma noise application.
    I'm pretty sure that the correct term for that 'background noise' should have been grain(not noise).

    To remove it completely, you could use a gaussian blur over the affected area. (but there are better ways!)
    The one thing to be mindful of tho when using gaussian blur in this manner is that you'll lose some saturation in the 'colour' of the affected areas.
    (because you're blending white pixels with the coloured pixels).

    The other trick is to use different NR levels on separate sections of the image .. selective NR, which can be painful as it takes more tweaking and hence more time to apply.
    On blurred areas(bokeh) you could use stronger chroma/grey NR settings, but leave sharpening to low, or off(this is the better way).
    There's no point in applying sharpening to blurred sections of the image.
    At the same time, you'd apply a different NR setting on any part of the image with good detail(such as the bird). You'd use a lower chroma noise setting and a normal to higher sharpening settings.
    Then of course you have different versions of these variations using the three separate colour channels too.

    Andrew was on to a good point, but I had a quick peek around and it does seem that Nikon start NR processing at ISO above 1600 on the D800.
    (if I find any info to the contrary, I'll post back).
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


  6. #6
    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    If you decide to use Capture NX2 to process the raw file, you can turn the in camera NR setting to off if you choose later on in PP.
    Here in lies the strange part.

    If you have all noise reduction settings set to off in camera and are shooting in either uncompressed or lossless compressed NEF at any iso when you open that image in Capture NX2 and then go to the "camera settings" menu it will (by default) have the noise reduction panel checked and the settings will be at (mode) faster, noise reduction amount 0 and sharpness at 5.
    From what I can gather, NX2 is replicating the settings from the camera. It is not over riding the camera and applying a default set of parameters.
    This is where I feel that the raw file is being "cooked" in camera with regard to noise reduction at the least. Yes, the amount that is applied ( 0 ) is consistent with what the camera menu has been set to but that sharpness setting does cause a modification of the image.
    If you open an image and then uncheck the NR panel you will see a shift in the histogram as it applies the new parameter and like wise you will see the histogram shift again when the NR panel is rechecked. At ridiculous pixel peeping levels of 100% and above you will see a difference in areas of the image subject to noise / grain when checking or unchecking that box.

    How other software other than NX2 interprets and presents an NEF file when opened at the default settings for that software is not something I have experience with. Maybe it ignores any camera settings at all, maybe it presents a raw file as the camera has been programmed ( cooked ).

    The amount of difference I am talking about is very very very small but there is a difference. I will link images that might show it although one has to look extremely closely to see them. ( pixel peepers rejoice )

    It is a D700 file but as far as I know they work the same. The image is a converted NEF that was captured with "neutral" camera settings, sharpening set to 0 and no other tweaks or adjustments.

    D700, iso 1600, 160mm, 1/50, F/2.8

    #1 is the whole file, #2 is a screen size crop with the NR box in camera settings checked as it is by default and #3 is with the NR box unchecked.

    Any difference you might be able to see is most pronounced in the area to the left of the subjects head. It is readily observable on a good quality monitor in the original files. What shows up on the web may not be as easy to see.







    But, once again, I feel if you need to apply any high iso noise reduction to an image in PP it is better done locally rather than globally in the same way that sharpening should be applied.

  7. #7
    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    I have my noise reduction turned off in camera. I use Noiseware for noise reduction post process and I believe the results speak for themselves:

    D800E + 300mm f2.8 VRII + 1.4x TCII, ISO6400, f6.3, 1/2000sec cropped about 20%.



    D800 + 300mm f2.8 VRII + 1.4x TCII, ISO6400, f5.6, 1/250sec cropped about 30%



    D800E + 500mm f4 VR, ISO6400, f5.6, 1/1000sec cropped about 30%.


  8. #8
    Still in the Circle of Confusion
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    Thank you all for the thoughtful and informative replies.

    Arthur's statement that it isn't noise, per se, but more like grain, has pretty much summed up my thoughts on the matter.

    And I seem to have made it more obvious with a slight tweak of the Clarity Slider. Will have to watch that in future.

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