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Higher ISO

This is a discussion on Higher ISO within the Digital photography forums, part of the Photography & Fine art photography category; Hi Everyone, Could someone explain to me the use of higher ISO meaning ISO greater than 800? When I don't ...

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    Default Higher ISO

    Hi Everyone,
    Could someone explain to me the use of higher ISO meaning ISO greater than 800?
    When I don't have enough light around I just try to use higher ISO but almost always it will be filled with noise. I can understand that is filled with noise but my question is when will we use this effectively. And I have heard that some cameras have ISO like 2600 or something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yisehaq View Post
    When I don't have enough light around I just try to use higher ISO but almost always it will be filled with noise.
    This depends entirely on your camera. Better cameras have a better noise performance, meaning you can increase the ISO with much less noise than cheaper cameras.

    You can also use noise reduction on the camera (most have a variety of NR settings) and can also do extra noise processing on the image.

    My Canon 450D has good performance at 400, perfectly fine at 800, and 1600 (it's highest) is useable on prints and fine on the web, but does benefit from a little noise reduction.

    I'm happy to use 1600 for indoor shots if necessary - if there's motion, slightly increased noise but higher shutter speeds is a good trade off, especially as you can improve noise in PP but can't improve blurry images.

    If your camera doesn't offer you the low light performance you'd like, it might be time to start thinking about upgrading, perhaps?

    BTW Each ISO doubling is an extra stop: 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400 and so on.

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    Thanks Ben H,
    Never thought of the noise reduction on PP. Can you please give me some hints?

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    The newer offerings from Nikon and Canon have amazing quality at higher ISO’s and sooner or later, it will work its way down to the entry level models. In my humble opinion, the consumer has directed the market in the wrong direction. Instead of the never ending quest for higher megapixals, (in some cases, there is more resolution in the body than the lens are able to provide) we should be demanding the same image quality at ISO 1600 that the pros are getting with their rigs. I’d much rather have a 6mp camera that shot cleanly at ISO 1600 than a 12mp one that struggled with ISO 800.

    For example, here’s one shot with available light at our state museum at ISO 1250. I don’t know about you, but I see very little, if any, noise in either the highs or lows. No post processing.
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    I don't see either the picture is really nice.
    But there seems IMHO to be enough light there. Usually the problem comes when there is not enough light and you are struggling to get that you end up in noise.

    But for example if you use higher ISO for sport photography in order to get higher shutter speed then I don't usually experience that much noise.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yisehaq View Post
    I don't see either the picture is really nice.
    But there seems IMHO to be enough light there. Usually the problem comes when there is not enough light and you are struggling to get that you end up in noise.

    But for example if you use higher ISO for sport photography in order to get higher shutter speed then I don't usually experience that much noise.
    This is where I’ll probably step beyond my ability to comment with any authority, but I think that the reason that there appears to be enough light is that it was shot at ISO 1250. The museum doesn’t allow the use of tripods. If I had tried to make the same shot handheld at say…ISO 600 I imagine the exposure time would have gone from the 1/10 of a second this one was made at to an exposure of over a second with a much different result (i.e.blurred beyond use). One-tenth of a second at ISO 600 would have been a bit darker.
    Last edited by Barefoot; 01-27-2009 at 03:06 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yisehaq View Post
    Thanks Ben H,
    Never thought of the noise reduction on PP. Can you please give me some hints?
    There are fairly sophisticated software packages optimised for this, like Nik's Dfine, Noise Ninja and other similar stuff - they are really pretty good...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Barefoot View Post
    In my humble opinion, the consumer has directed the market in the wrong direction. Instead of the never ending quest for higher megapixals, (in some cases, there is more resolution in the body than the lens are able to provide) we should be demanding the same image quality at ISO 1600 that the pros are getting with their rigs. Id much rather have a 6mp camera that shot cleanly at ISO 1600 than a 12mp one that struggled with ISO 800.
    If you nose around on the forums, the general popular opinion is exactly this - we have enough megapixels, we don't need more, but instead give us better low light/noise performance.

    Cameras that come out with higher mp and more noise are not being received particularly favourably within the community.

    Now how quickly this attitude moves along to the general consumer, and finds it's way to feedback to the manufacturers I don't know.

    Being able to shoot at 6400 with acceptable noise performance would be great. Getting up to the 25000 range and still being able to produce usable images would be fricken' fantastic..!

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    Good discussion.. Does anyone have an opinion on an acceptable ISO for the Nikon D80....?

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    Quote Originally Posted by fangelico View Post
    Good discussion.. Does anyone have an opinion on an acceptable ISO for the Nikon D80....?
    Yup ISO 640 is the max IMO. The noise becomes noticeable (to me anyway) at ISO 800. Noise reduction software helps A LOT.
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