RX100 Noise

Discussion in 'Sony Forum' started by Frank, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    I shoot RAW
    I like shooting indoors without flash and outdoors in low light.

    I've set my Auto iso very low to a Min of 100 and a Maximum of 400.
    And yet I still get a lot of noise.
    Anyone out there bothered by the same thing - any solution?

    (all the noise reduction settings in the menu only apply to jpegs)

    Thanks,
    Frank
     
  2. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    Welcome aboard.

    Could you please post a photo that exhibits the noise, or give us a link?
     
  3. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    This was taken this afternoon - indoors but with decent light coming in through windows.
    Camera on Program mode and the auto iso selected 400iso.
    Reduced size jpegs made from raw
    _DSC0643. 100% crop_400iso.
     
  4. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    Hmm, I don't know if that's an appropriate level of noise for the RX100's sensor. The image is soft because of the low shutter speed, I think, so camera and/or subject movement is affecting that.

    Even with the light coming thru the window, it's still a bit dim - ISO 400, f/3.5, 1/13s - and dim lighting = more noise than bright lighting.

    What RAW conversion software are you using? Different programs handle noise a little differently.
     
  5. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    I use ACR. I have not tried to reduce noise in the raw conversion - yet. I wanted to show it out of camera.
    I know it's a bit soft because of slow shutter but that isn't my issue.
    Why if it's properly exposed, whether the light is bright or dim, should there be so much noise at 400iso?
     
  6. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    because it's a pretty gratuitous crop and it's a small sensor. I think if that were printed out, you wouldn't see the noise. Judging noise is always subjective, but I think if you view the image as a whole (and not zoomed in) that for a compact camera, it is performing well. You can't compare a small(ish) sensor compact camera with the bigger sensors.

    here's a place to compare noise at various ISO from different cameras..... Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 In-Depth Review: Digital Photography Review
     
  7. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    Thanks for that link - it looks interesting and I'll take a look.
    I just cropped a piece out of the full frame when it was viewed at 100%.
    It just seemed very "grainy" or "noisy" at 400 iso
     
  8. Lucille

    Lucille SC Veteran

    324
    Aug 20, 2012
    Hepcat City
    I dont find the Rx100 to be that noisy, here are a few lowlight shots, there was a smoke machine putting smoke in the air, so don't mistake that for noise.


    bop-31.



    this shot was at iso800.

    bop-34.
     
  9. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    I think one has to view it at 100%
     
  10. Lucille

    Lucille SC Veteran

    324
    Aug 20, 2012
    Hepcat City
    Do you go around posting images at 100%.

    My files from any camera I have used at 100% can have issues...sorry though, I don't pixel peep, I leave that for others.
     
  11. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    Of course I don't post pictures at 100% pixel dimensions. But I do look at it at 100% if I am retouching, or sharpening, or assessing quality related issues.
     
  12. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    I wouldn't qualify it as a "lot" of noise - remember, we're dealing with a small, 1 inch sensor. The longer the exposure, the more heat the electronics in the sensor generate, thus a little more noise.

    Anyway, looking at the RX100's ISO400 image from the Imaging Resource comparometer - Imaging Resource "Comparometer" ™ Digital Camera Image Comparison Page - I can see some noise, even with the RX100's jpeg engine applying NR.
     
  13. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    "The longer the exposure, the more heat the electronics in the sensor generate, thus a little more noise."

    That is interesting.
    My thinking had been no matter what the light levels, as long as it isn't under-exposed, there should be minimal grain/noise up to about 400, even 800 iso.

    But, you're saying that even on a correctly exposed image, if the exposure is long it'll generate more noise. Very interesting. I'd like to read more on that. Any articles or links?

    I'd have understood if it were a 30 sec exposure, or something like that, but....?
     
  14. Yeats

    Yeats SC All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA
    Chris
    I don't have an article on this, it's something that's been discussed over the years, CCD sensors and conventional CMOS sensors - that is, not back side-illuminated (BSI) CMOS - are particularly susceptible. Essentially, as more heat is generated by longer exposures, electrical leakage causes noise, kind of like interference on old analog TV's.

    IMO, there are 3 primary culprits at work wrt the ISO400 image you posted:

    1. It's RAW, so there's no noise reduction applied.
    2. ISO 400 on a 20MP, 1 inch sensor is going to have noise. Each photosite on the sensor is so incredibly tiny that even trace amounts of electrical leakage (at ISO 400, primarily due to signal amplification) will cause noise. Look at it this way - an APS-C sensor, the kind most used in popular DSLR's, has 3x the surface of your RX100's sensor.
    3. 20MP is too much crammed into such a small sensor. Per-pixel sharpness and smoothness is just not going to be there.
     
  15. Frank

    Frank SC Rookie

    10
    Mar 12, 2013
    Thanks for all the info. I guess I'll have to limit the iso to 200 if noise bugs me, or 'get over it' if I want a pocketable camera :)
     
  16. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    or get bigger pockets :tongue: