Holiday Parade - X100

Discussion in 'Street and Documentary' started by Ray Sachs, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend Subscribing Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    Real Name:
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Last night was our local Holiday parade. It gets bigger and crazier every year. I took the X10 and the GRD3 to see how they'd do in such low light shooting. And I took the X100 because I KNOW how it does. After a few shots with each of the little guys, I put 'em back in the bag and just shot with the X100. Being able to confidently shoot at ISO 3200 is such an amazing luxury and makes shooting events like this SOOOOOO much easier, at least combined with a reasonably fast f2.0 lens. I'm sure I'd have come close to the quality shooting with my Pen and 25mm f1.4 at 1600, but that's not my favorite field of view by a long shot. Every now and then I forget just how much I love the X100 and a shoot like this just smacks me in the face with what a wonderful camera it is!

    I went back and looked at my shots from last year of the same event when the best I could do was a GF1 with the 20 f1.7, which I was never really comfortable shooting above 800. I had a lot of shots with that combination with just too slow a shutter speed to really work. But a larger noise free sensor (or just great jpeg noise handling - take your pick), makes a HUGE difference. I wish I'd have taken the Pen and the 12mm and 45mm to see how they'd have done at 1600 - they were great for Times Square night shooting, but there's a WHOLE lot more light in Times Square than in this little town! I suspect I'd have still had trouble maintaining decent shutter speeds...

    These are all X100 and pretty much all wide open at 3200. The B&W are al Silver Efex Pro, the color shots are a mix of Color Efex Pro and Silver Efex Pro...

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446242333/" title="DSCF0301 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0301"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446246485/" title="DSCF0368 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0368"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446248821/" title="DSCF0395 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0395"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446239269/" title="DSCF0283 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="1024" alt="DSCF0283"></a>

    This kid did NOT get what he was hoping for last year!

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446247225/" title="DSCF0381 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="683" alt="DSCF0381"></a>

    Its easy to forget how overwhelming and amazing the world could be when you were a kid...

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446243799/" title="DSCF0328 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="1024" alt="DSCF0328"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446244439/" title="DSCF0334 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0334"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446250799/" title="DSCF0415 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="683" alt="DSCF0415"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446238357/" title="DSCF0263 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0263"></a>

    Parade or not, these folks still had to work...

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446238821/" title="DSCF0264 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="1024" alt="DSCF0264"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446243393/" title="DSCF0319 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0319"></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20889767@N05/6446250197/" title="DSCF0401 by ramboorider1, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="680" alt="DSCF0401"></a>

    -Ray
     
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  2. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Real Name:
    Jack
    That's also one of the reasons I love the X100 - low light image quality!

    Were you using AF or your usual zone focus for these shots?
     
  3. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend Subscribing Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    Real Name:
    you should be able to figure it out...
    No, these are all AF. Zone focus requires some depth of field which requires an aperture a good deal smaller than f2, particularly on a large sensor camera like this. I'll sometimes use snap focus on the GRD at f1.9, but even that gives you a pretty small "zone". F2 on the X100 would be prohibitive. And since i tend to shoot the X100 from the eye rather than the hip, I use AF pretty much all the time with this camera. Zone works great for daylight shooting with some cameras, but its not my preferred method with the X100 any time of day.

    -Ray
     
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  4. krugorg

    krugorg SC All-Pro

    Sep 26, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Real Name:
    Kyle Krug
    Great series, Ray! Thanks for sharing.

    Do you happen to remember if shutter speed was getting close to being an issue handheld? I am guessing your hands are steadier than mine!
     
  5. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend Subscribing Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    Real Name:
    you should be able to figure it out...
    The shutter speeds ranged from a low of about 1/20 to 1/100 of a second, with several in the 1/50 neighborhood. I had others that were slower that didn't turn out. When you get down into this neighborhood, the difference between being able to comfortably shoot at 3200 vs 1600 with the corresponding doubling of shutter speed makes a really big difference. I shoot my pen at 1600, but 3200 is a step too far. When I had a GH2, 1600 was a bit better than the Pen and 3200 wasn't quite as bad, but I still didn't find 3200 really useable so I had the same bottom line with that camera. I'd think about something like a GXR, which looks pretty good at 3200, but with the fastest aperture at f2.5, you're giving a lot of that stop back to the lens. I expect the Nex 5N with the 24 f1.8 would be in the same neighborhood as the X100, but that lens is bigger than I'd want to have as a primary carry lens and I doubt its notably better than the X100, which I obviously already own.

    I expect it won't be too long before m43 sensors will be truly good at 3200 and then all of that nice fast glass will really come into play and make that an even better night shooting option than the X100. But by then the X300 will probably be incredible at 12,800, so the chase continues! :cool:

    -Ray
     
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  6. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Real Name:
    Jack
    I haven't tried the GH2 combined with the PL25. My old man has the GH2 now. But it might be quite a nice combo, and allow for decent usage at 3200 while still keeping a decently high shutter speed. The PL25 does add some length to any m4/3 body though. So at the end of the day, the X100 is still the undisputed serious compact king of the night.

    Now ... as for the X300 ... or even X200 ... hehehe. Looking forward to that! I'd love to see a X100 form factor with the Sony 16 mp sensor in it. With the K5, 12800 is actually quite usable for medium sized photos. While I still prefer to keep things at 3200 with the K5, 6400 is still very good.
     
  7. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    Real Name:
    BB
    Ray, I saw these pictures early this morning on Flickr, you'll see how much I liked them over there, too. That snowman is one of my tiptop favorites due to its very weirdness.:biggrin: Your parade looks like a lot of fun - your town is so active! Have you ever shown your photos to a local newspaper or blog or anything? I'd think they'd love to use them.

    I think my second favorite is the quiet view of the violinist amidst some of her favorite things, I'd think.

    And the picture with that little girl on her father's shoulders is quite beautiful.

    You had a great evening!
     
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  8. Hyubie

    Hyubie SC Veteran

    360
    Jun 8, 2011
    Massachusetts
    I love how at first I saw this as a sad reminder that there are those who spend the holidays sad/lonely, especially those who for economical reasons have to be be away from family.

    And then I saw the lady on the right, and it took on a completely different tone. For a minute there I also got reminded that there are those among us who exploit the Holidays to do some not-so-good things to unsuspecting people. :smile:

    Qstn though - so these are all JPEGs and then PP'd? Very very nice set.
     
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  9. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Real Name:
    Jack
    Great imagination! Let's just hope they were both waiting for their family and friends to come by so that they could also go to the parade! :)
     
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  10. christilou

    christilou SC Hall of Famer S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 13, 2010
    Sunny Frimley
    Very festive! I like the violinist lost in her own world amongst the frivolities. I'll probably keep my X100 for the very reasons you state. Great high iso captures :) I recently discovered zone focus on the X100 and used it on my last trip to Spain where the brightness enabled me to use it to the full at f8 or 11.
     
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  11. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend Subscribing Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    Real Name:
    you should be able to figure it out...
    Yes, all jpegs and then PP'd. The Fujis are the only camera's I've owned that I prefer the jpeg output to what I can make from the raw files. And there's more than enough latitude in them for post processing. I can generally pull more shadow detail out of an X100 jpeg than out of a Pen raw file before it starts to break up, which I don't understand at ALL. I've just never found a reason to shoot raw with this camera. And its a lot faster in operation with jpegs, so that's at least one strong reason to stay with them.

    The woman on the right is standing right in front of the restaurant that the guy works at - he's standing outside of the kitchen entrance taking a break - this is on a side street and if you continue another several feet beyond her, you can see the main perpendicular parade route. I have breakfast there from time to time and the place is about two blocks from where I live so I can tell you that he's out there a lot, at all hours of the day. I don't know anything about her, but he's very familiar to me and I had the same reaction - he's a long long way from home and its got to be difficult to see all of the relatively well off families with their kids enjoying such a light-hearted good time when he's scraping by and likely sending a lot of the little he makes back to his family. This is probably my favorite shot of the series, but more because I know a bit of the back-story than the image itself... Sorry Armando, Hyubie is at least half right on this one...

    -Ray
     
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  12. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Real Name:
    Steve
    I very much like these shots. They have a bit of the look of HDR work. Is this just the nature of the EXR sensor?
     
  13. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend Subscribing Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    Real Name:
    you should be able to figure it out...
    This is the X100, not the X10. No EXR sensor available! Just really good low light sensitivity and whatever weirdness appealed to me while I was processing them! Its funny - I don't like HDR shots that are obviously HDR shots, and yet a fair amount of my processing of NON-hdr shots ends up looking a bit like that. I can't explain it, I can sometimes try to avoid it, but it seems to be my inclination...

    -Ray
     
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  14. BBW

    BBW Administrator Emeritus S.C. Charter Member

    Jul 7, 2010
    betwixt and between
    Real Name:
    BB
    Agreed, Hyubie - that picture is very poignant and thought provoking.

    And "Yay!", Christina!
     
  15. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Real Name:
    Steve
    I don't know that much about the x100 (I'm buying an x10) so I assumed it had the EXR sensor. Instead, it's just a really good sensor :smile:
     
  16. Great shots in some tough environments.
     
  17. Iansky

    Iansky SC Top Veteran

    782
    Dec 8, 2011
    Cotswolds, UK
    Ray,

    What a great set of images that clearly demonstrate what the X100 is capable of in the right hands - thanks for sharing, images such as these are what inspired me to get this camera!:smile:
     
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  18. Isoterica

    Isoterica SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 6, 2011
    Wonderful seasonal shot that capture the tone of the holiday. And uhm.. now I want an x100. You know if I send the GRD IV and the X100 back .. I could. Well really I can't, one of those is a bit high, but.. yeah LOL. I need to cure this G.A.S.