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Photo

Which is better or more appealing to see. a noisy sharp image or blurry one?


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22 replies to this topic

#1
realflow100

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A noisy sharp image without any motion blur with a shorter shutter speed and higher iso

or a somewhat blurry but noise-free image. with a longer shutter speed and lower iso.

 

I can't decide which is better. The noise is obviously distracting and loses details. but the image having a shorter shutter speed makes the image sharper.

but a longer shutter speed makes the image more blurry from motion blur. even if it has lower noise.

 

I cant decide which is the better tradeoff.



#2
Merco_61

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That would depend on the subject, your tolerance for noise, the reproduction scale and the viewing distance.

This reasoning sounds like it is time to take the step up to at least a current Coolpix, if not a MILC or DSLR with the 20 MP DX sensor. Either way will give you a far better signal to noise ratio to play with compared to the 2012 tech in a P500. 



#3
Nikon Shooter

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Technical considerations are matters of knowledge and trouble shooting
but noise and blur — the way you talked about them in your post — are
more like "artistic intent", a matter of choice / taste.

Not being forced to accept / choose any of options because of limitations
is where things are really happening in terms of expression.



#4
realflow100

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I dont have money for a higher end camera anytime soon.

It was already expensive and took months of saving up to afford the p500 which cost about 140$ (160$ after tax fees and shipping) i got so im stuck with this for probably the next few years.

 

I dont need any higher resolution even a good quality 2mp image would be fine for me.

im not doing any large prints or professional work. mostly just taking pics for fun and stuff. sharing with friends and family ect.

so maybe 4mp would be the highest resolution really. my computer screen only displays up to 1080p anyways.

 

noise is still noticable at iso's higher than 200 even at 2mp resolution

 

Why is there no low resolution cheap cameras with high quality available? even the lowest mp camera I can find anywhere is above 10mp which my screen cant even display unless i crop in.
Whats the use of all the extra megapixels besides cropping? why not just have bigger pixels with a lower resolution?
I dont do much cropping usually.



#5
Merco_61

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If you shoot at the maximum resolution and then resize for the output resolution you need, you will raise the noise floor significantly compared to shooting at a lower resolution. The pixel binning a good resize algorithm uses takes much more processing power than the simple averaging the camera does when you select a lower resolution. 

 

The reason for somewhere around 12 MP as a minimum is that it needs skill to print even in A4 from lower resolution than that and lots of people still want to be able to print their better shots. 



#6
realflow100

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on my nikon p500 I get a different experience.
shooting at a lower resolution and viewing the resulting images in my computer look progressively sharper and cleaner as I get lower resolution when viewing at 100% scale on my computer.
until it gets lower MP than my monitor resolution. then it starts looking a bit strange.

2mp/1080p resolution photos look great on my monitor. really crisp looking



#7
Merco_61

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Check what happens if you resize a full-res photo to the same 1080 pixels on the x-axis in post. You will probably get less noise as well as a better dynamic range compared to your 1080 pixel capture SOOC unless you use a really bad app for the resizing.



#8
TBonz

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I agree with Merco and Nikon Shooter above.  Depending on the subject and intent, blur or noise may be a tool to help create the image you want.  That said...

 

If you are not capturing the highest resolution that you can in your original image, you are not giving your image its best chance to shine.

Unless it is for an artistic reason, I would not recommend a less than sharp image.  Look at sports images that are shot at night or indoors.  The images are sharp and are likely shot at high ISO to ensure they can stop the action and have a usable image.  Yes, the equipment they are using is higher end, but their first criteria is sharp...



#9
realflow100

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Nope. the in camera lower resolution option looks clearer and sharper no matter what program i try to use to resize with or what downsizing method I use. I tried both gimp and mspaint and neither do as good as just taking the photo in a lower resolution for me.

Weird. but thats fine i guess



#10
TBonz

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MSPaint is not what most would consider a photo editor even though technically you can use it to modify a photo.   Sounds like gimp has the same issue if it is giving you similar results.  Shooting at a lower resolution should not provide a better image.  I think you need to try Nikon's free tools or some other photo editor...



#11
Jerry_

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To contribute to the initial question: post processing software will allow you to work on noise in a picture, it will not allow you to recover a blurred picture.
As others said, preferring however the one over the other can be driven by artistic reasons

For processing pictures I mainly use the DXO Photolab (DxO PhotoLab 4 - New Features) application, which also includes a quite well performing denoising tool, as may do other photoediting software.

If you look out for some denoising freeware then giybf, i.e. search the terms « photo denoise freeware » in Google to get an overview.

#12
realflow100

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No photo tool ive tried to downsize an image smaller has produced the same crispness of just shooting at a lower resolution in the camera options

It seems like the camera already can do a great job downsizing the full sensor resolution to a lower one automatically.

 

gimp has several different downsampling options

and they all look softer or seem to lose details or look too grainy/noisy.

 

my original question though was which is more acceptable for an image. to be less noisy but slightly blurry from camera shake. or sharper without camera shake. but with more noise.

im not going to do any large prints or selling professional photo art or anything. just mostly sharing photos online with friends or similar stuff.

 

i dont want the image to look like it was taken at iso 1 million or something where its more noise than detail. but i dont want it to just look like i was spinning in an office chair when i take the photo either.



#13
Merco_61

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That would still depend on the subject, your tolerance for noise, the reproduction scale and the viewing distance.

#14
TBonz

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I stand by my response to that question...

 

Unless it is for an artistic reason, I would not recommend a less than sharp image.  Look at sports images that are shot at night or indoors.  The images are sharp and are likely shot at high ISO to ensure they can stop the action and have a usable image.  Yes, the equipment they are using is higher end, but their first criteria is sharp...

 

I would love to see these images where a lower resolution looks better than a higher resolution.



#15
Jerry_

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Indeed it would be helpful to see some pictures to show the difference between a larger and a smaller picture.

Regarding downsampling in general it is mainly build on algorithms taking neighboring pixels and deciding which qualities (colour, luminescence, etc) preveil to render it as a single pixel.
The difference here - between an in-camera and a software approach - is that the camera has the raw data coming from the sensor, while a software package (like Gimp) will start with a compressed format (fi JPG) which has already lost some details. This could explain why an in camera processing renders better pictures than doing teh same downsampling in post processing.

#16
realflow100

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is a photo like this decent looking quality? like is there no noticeable noteworthy problems with the image quality? noise levels reasonable? acceptable quality?

this is just normal full resolution with sharpening turned off. contrast and saturation on "normal"

Attached Thumbnails

  • DSCN2456.png


#17
TBonz

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What were your EXIF settings on that shot (aperture, shutter speed, ISO)?  Did you shoot it on Auto?

 

The shot appears to have been taken with the aperture wide open.  As such there is a shallow depth of field in the image.  That is not suggesting a problem with the image, just one of the "tools" available to photographers.  Without the setting information and an idea of what kind of image you wanted to create, it is hard to answer your questions.  I may change my opinion after you fill us in, but the image seems acceptable to me.  



#18
realflow100

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I didnt shoot it on auto. I picked a iso 160 and used aperture priority mode set to widest. only shutter speed was auto

sharpness off

contrast saturation on normal.

 

there is some DOF effect but its not very strong since my camera has a tiny sensor. so its more like a much higher aperture number instead. but im not really concerned with the DOF in this photo.



#19
TBonz

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If you are at the widest aperture, you are at the lowest (least amount of) depth of field.  The lettering on the top of the bulb appears to be the chosen focus point.  Other areas show some softness which would be expected with the aperture wide open.

 

What was the shutter speed the camera selected?  What focal length did you use to shoot this?  When you took the image, what if any result were you hoping you would get?



#20
Merco_61

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I played around with it a bit and found out that it sharpens up significantly when the white balance is corrected. The S/N ratio gets better too.