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Kitty1521

Camera Quality

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Posted (edited)

Hi everyone :) I have been using an Olympus Pen mirrorless camera for years, but when I tried to upload some images, I was rejected for not having a good enough camera (maybe it's just out of date). I can't find anything on their site that specifies what quality sensor you should have or what specs your camera should have at all, just an explanation of the different types. Do you have to have a full frame DSLR for this? I am a hobbyist and shoot mostly close up images of wild life but I also enjoy taking photos of the northern lights and the 11,800ish lakes I live near (lots of opportunities for beautiful scenery shots here). I'm not 100% sure I'm down for purchasing a new camera at this very moment, but I'm rather looking for suggestions as to what other people use for these types of shots should I find myself in my local camera shop :) Thanks!

Edited by Kitty1521
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Everyone has their own favorite camera, camera brand.

 

No you do not need a full frame camera!

 

For my stock photography I use  a APS-C "crop-sensor" Fujifilm X-T3 camera. I would recommend that you look at Fujifilm as they have several models and good glass to put on them. When looking for a new system/brand to adopt the quality and selection of their lens can be more important than the camera body.

 

Hope this helps,

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I'm a bit surprised that your Olympus Pen images were rejected because of the camera but you don't say which model that you have. You've probably seen Alamy's rough guide to cameras, they say that Micro 4/3 should be OK and in fact some cameras with even smaller sensors get through, though these mainly seem to be from the Sony RX100 range. You don't need full frame.

 

https://www.alamy.com/blog/alamys-rough-guide-to-digital-cameras

 

I also think Fuji are great and the older models such as the X-T2 or even the X-T1 can be very good buys if you can't stretch to the X-T3 mentioned above, plenty of resolution and dynamic range for Alamy. As you say, others will have other recommendations, Nikon may well get a mention or two.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

I'm another Fuji X user, but Olympus 4/3 should be fine.

One thing to note is that camera brands vary in their ability to produce JPEG files on the fly. An in-law sent me some JPEG files from his new Olympus camera a while back, a high-end model, and I noticed a fair amount of so-called JPEG artifacts. I don't know if this is typical of Olympus or an anomaly. Pentax also are not renowned for their in-camera JPEGs, but are fine if you shoot RAW and process in the computer. Fuji does a great job with JPEGs (depending on specific model), but I prefer to shoot RAW.

 

Anyway, if you are shooting in-camera JPEGs, you might try shooting RAW and seeing if it makes a difference.

 

By the way, I have two X-T1s, an X-T2 and a little X-A5. For stock I mostly use the X-T1s and their 16 megapixel files are fine (especially since the minimum requirement is six megapixels).

Edited by DDoug
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As stated above micro 4/3 should be fine for stock so long as your glass is ok and you shoot raw. I currently use Panasonic GX85 and GX9; the only QC problem was with the Panasonic kit lens which is just poor. Obviously we aren't aware of your workflow but I would only shoot jpeg for news images.

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On 15/08/2020 at 04:29, Kitty1521 said:

Hi everyone :) I have been using an Olympus Pen mirrorless camera for years, but when I tried to upload some images, I was rejected for not having a good enough camera (maybe it's just out of date). I can't find anything on their site that specifies what quality sensor you should have or what specs your camera should have at all, just an explanation of the different types. Do you have to have a full frame DSLR for this? I am a hobbyist and shoot mostly close up images of wild life but I also enjoy taking photos of the northern lights and the 11,800ish lakes I live near (lots of opportunities for beautiful scenery shots here). I'm not 100% sure I'm down for purchasing a new camera at this very moment, but I'm rather looking for suggestions as to what other people use for these types of shots should I find myself in my local camera shop :) Thanks!

Are you sure the failure reason given was "unsuitable camera"? If so, and it wasn't a technical reason such as size or soft and lacking definition, you can ask Alamy to look again. I don't know of any cameras af MFT or above that are automatically considered unsuitable nowadays. Even smaller sensors such as in the RX100 can pass.

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Full frame gets more cropping possibilities.  I have things in my portfolio that range from Micro 4/3rds to full frame, but with the Micro 4/3rds, I can't always export a good sized photo.  The Sony a7 II is on sale now about for what I got a used a7 original model for and then later new one.   The oldest Pens have  less than 16 mp.

 

The smaller formats, especially in 12 mp cameras, require better technique or some massaging.   Can be done but doesn't work as reliably for all as the somewhat large formats. 

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If you click on my blue numbers under my avatar, everything taken in the first 30 pages or so we’re taken mostly with the Fuji X-T1 or X-T2.  The T2 for several of the last years.  Some RX100-3 mixed in here and there. And yes, the Fuji system offers excellent lenses. Most if not all of the inside-a-store images were with my RX100-3. Mainly because I was shopping first...taking pictures second, and the RX fit nicely in my handbag and nobody else in the stores paid it any attention. Slip out...snap...slip in.

Betty

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On 17/08/2020 at 15:26, DDoug said:

By the way, I have two X-T1s, an X-T2 and a little X-A5. For stock I mostly use the X-T1s and their 16 megapixel files are fine (especially since the minimum requirement is six megapixels).

 

I found such a great improvement in responsiveness when I switched from the X-T1 to the X-T2. With the X-T1 I could not count on capturing the decisive moment as it had a terrible slow response to a shutter press. I learned to work around it and the X-T1 was a great camera for it's time but when I got my hands on the X-T2 I was so HAPPY that my eye, shutter finger and camera were in sync.

 

Do you see the same difference between the X-T1 and X-T2 that I experienced ?

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Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, Betty LaRue said:

If you click on my blue numbers under my avatar, everything taken in the first 30 pages or so we’re taken mostly with the Fuji X-T1 or X-T2

 

Same for me, X-T1, X-T2 and now the X-T3

Edited by dlmphotog

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28 minutes ago, dlmphotog said:

X-T2 and now the X-T3

Interesting, do you find the X-T3 significantly better than the X-T2?

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Posted (edited)
35 minutes ago, dlmphotog said:

 

I found such a great improvement in responsiveness when I switched from the X-T1 to the X-T2. With the X-T1 I could not count on capturing the decisive moment as it had a terrible slow response to a shutter press. I learned to work around it and the X-T1 was a great camera for it's time but when I got my hands on the X-T2 I was so HAPPY that my eye, shutter finger and camera were in sync.

 

Do you see the same difference between the X-T1 and X-T2 that I experienced ?

It didn’t hinder me that much. The biggest things I enjoyed from the T2 was the megapixel increase which allowed more cropping, and loving the joystick. I don’t ask a lot from my cameras and seldom use extra features. Improvement in video? I don’t care, don’t use it. Long exposure? Don’t do it. The list goes on.
One thing that’s big for me is WYSIWYG. Wow, huge.

Edited by Betty LaRue

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2 hours ago, dlmphotog said:

 

I found such a great improvement in responsiveness when I switched from the X-T1 to the X-T2. With the X-T1 I could not count on capturing the decisive moment as it had a terrible slow response to a shutter press. I learned to work around it and the X-T1 was a great camera for it's time but when I got my hands on the X-T2 I was so HAPPY that my eye, shutter finger and camera were in sync.

 

Do you see the same difference between the X-T1 and X-T2 that I experienced ?

Not really. One reason might be that I'm a back-button focuser. I don't know if focusing with the shutter button would make a difference in responsiveness, just guessing. I have velcro on the various relevant buttons — AEL, Focus Assist, front FN, etc. — and the use of the camera is comfortable to me. With two bodies and 14 + 18-55 lenses, I never change lenses in the field. I mostly use the X-T2 for video, tabletop and macro. For video it's definitely a better camera. I use the X-A5 only for slide digitizing because I find the Bayer sensor to be better than the X-Trans for that work, especially for grainy old Tri-X negatives.

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7 hours ago, Harry Harrison said:

Interesting, do you find the X-T3 significantly better than the X-T2?

No, not a big difference. Wish I had kept my X-T2's.

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5 hours ago, DDoug said:

Not really. One reason might be that I'm a back-button focuser.

 

Ok, interesting. Wondering if it was just the way I used the camera?

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4 hours ago, dlmphotog said:

No, not a big difference. Wish I had kept my X-T2's

Thanks, always good to hear from someone who has used both. Like DDoug I use the back button focus so I was pleasantly surprised how well I get on with the relatively ancient X-Pro1 & X-E1. Actually I never thought I'd like the X-E1 but I bought it for the lens that came with it and I'm finding it a very good little inconspicuous walkaround camera.

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10 hours ago, DDoug said:

I use the X-A5 only for slide digitizing because I find the Bayer sensor to be better than the X-Trans for that work, especially for grainy old Tri-X negatives

I've been using the X-T1 and my Canon 5D MkII for slide copying, the latter is very slightly better but I put that down to the extra MP (I'm using equivalent high quality enlarger lenses on both) and so I was thinking that an X-T2 might be just about perfect for that purpose. Strange that the 'lesser' standard Bayer 24MP sensor on your X-A5 should be better, are you seeing artefacts thanks to the X-Trans processing on your Tri-X 'scans'?

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1 hour ago, Harry Harrison said:

I've been using the X-T1 and my Canon 5D MkII for slide copying, the latter is very slightly better but I put that down to the extra MP (I'm using equivalent high quality enlarger lenses on both) and so I was thinking that an X-T2 might be just about perfect for that purpose. Strange that the 'lesser' standard Bayer 24MP sensor on your X-A5 should be better, are you seeing artefacts thanks to the X-Trans processing on your Tri-X 'scans'?

The X-A5 is a recent purchase and the difference between its files and those of the X-T2 with respect to slide and negative copying is more subtle than I expected, frankly. However, the rest of my workflow with these images involves enlarging in PhotoZoom, denoising in Neat Image, then reducing again in PhotoZoom. (Neat Image needs a patch of even tone to work with, hence blowing the image up.) With the Bayer sensor I get an end result that looks like natural film grain and with the X-Trans, something not actually usable. If I were just to leave it alone at the original “scan” size, there wouldn't be that much difference, i.e., some, but not enough to make it worth buying another camera, even a cheap one like a used X-A5.

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48 minutes ago, DDoug said:

The X-A5 is a recent purchase and the difference between its files and those of the X-T2 with respect to slide and negative copying is more subtle than I expected, frankly. However, the rest of my workflow with these images involves enlarging in PhotoZoom, denoising in Neat Image, then reducing again in PhotoZoom. (Neat Image needs a patch of even tone to work with, hence blowing the image up.) With the Bayer sensor I get an end result that looks like natural film grain and with the X-Trans, something not actually usable. If I were just to leave it alone at the original “scan” size, there wouldn't be that much difference, i.e., some, but not enough to make it worth buying another camera, even a cheap one like a used X-A5.

Thanks for that detail, very interesting, looks like a relatively cheap X-A5 could be the answer for camera scanning then.

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1 hour ago, DDoug said:

but not enough to make it worth buying another camera, even a cheap one like a used X-A5.

They don't go for that much, that's for sure, especially without their kit lenses. Intrigued to see that on ebay many are sold, a constant stream seemingly, converted to full spectrum IR, looks like they may be the 'go to' camera for that discipline. The tilting screen would work well with my Bowens Illumitran copying system.

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22 minutes ago, Harry Harrison said:

They don't go for that much, that's for sure, especially without their kit lenses. Intrigued to see that on ebay many are sold, a constant stream seemingly, converted to full spectrum IR, looks like they may be the 'go to' camera for that discipline. The tilting screen would work well with my Bowens Illumitran copying system.

Right. I think a good used one in the UK is around 150 pounds.
Anyway, sorry to hijack your thread, Kitty.
Here is a comparison, both shot with the same kit (Micro-Nikkor 55mm with Kipon helical macro adapter, Nikon slide copy attachment).

Top is unaltered shot, below is denoised as described above:

http://dondouglas.com/A5-T2_comparison.jpg

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11 minutes ago, DDoug said:

Anyway, sorry to hijack your thread, Kitty.

Yes, my fault Kitty!

 

Thanks for sharing these, I'd not heard of either Photozoom or Neat Image, much clearer grain on the X-A5, yes denoise on the X-T2 hasn't worked well at all. On another thread Michael Chapman puts Topaz denoise to very good effect on camera scans, not from an X-T2 though of course. I'm wondering what RAW processor you're using with the X-T2, could it be a manifestation of this 'worm' effect that can appear with Fuji X-Trans images?

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25 minutes ago, Harry Harrison said:

 I'm wondering what RAW processor you're using with the X-T2, could it be a manifestation of this 'worm' effect that can appear with Fuji X-Trans images?

 

Mostly I use ACR in Photoshop, occasionally in Lightroom. For the X-T1 files I first run through Iridient X-Transformer; haven't found it necessary with X-T2. I tried Capture One, couldn't quite get used to it. I'm happy with the X-Trans sensor output, with the exception of combination with pronounced film grain.

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22 minutes ago, DDoug said:

Mostly I use ACR in Photoshop, occasionally in Lightroom. For the X-T1 files I first run through Iridient X-Transformer; haven't found it necessary with X-T2

Thanks, all very interesting to me.

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1 hour ago, DDoug said:

Right. I think a good used one in the UK is around 150 pounds.
Anyway, sorry to hijack your thread, Kitty.
Here is a comparison, both shot with the same kit (Micro-Nikkor 55mm with Kipon helical macro adapter, Nikon slide copy attachment).

Top is unaltered shot, below is denoised as described above:

http://dondouglas.com/A5-T2_comparison.jpg

 

 

Why not post some of this info in THE slide copying thread. It is very relevant to that thread and Kitty can have her thread back 😀. The fact that someone is successfully using a Micro-Nikkor 55mm with Kipon helical macro adapter, Nikon slide copy attachment on an entry level Fuji camera would really add to that thread. 

 

One thing I would say in relation to the above pictures is that you can't separate noise reduction from sharpness as the interplay between the two is what really counts. It would be interesting to see what the denoise here does to the image sharpness as well. 

 

 

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