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TVSD vs SONYbs DSCV1

fotografz

Well-Known Member
TVSD is good only for snap shots IF that is the kind of photos that are taken. Snap shots are a style of photography, not the result of a specific type of camera.

I just completed a side by side comparison of street shooting in which I used a TVSD and a Leica M7. The results can be viewed on the general gallery both here on the Contax site and the Leica sister site gallery.
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
Hi everyone, there are now shots from the "Street Shootout" mentioned above on the Canon gallery also. They were done with a Canon G5.

If you go to any of the galleries for a comparison, be sure to click on "see all of fotografzs photos" because other uploads are already knocking some of the shots off the main page.
 

rico

Well-Known Member
Marc,

Despite the DOF issue, the TVSD is top of my list for a pocketable digicam (a gap in my photo closet).

A word of thanks is due. I always enjoy your contributions to this forum and to the Leica list at photo.net. How on earth do you find the time to post messages, conduct tests, AND make a living? I'm run ragged just absorbing the wealth of knowledge (and following the soap operas).

Hat's off to you!
 

narrbl

Active Member
Ok, and here then is my fatal question on the TVS-D in relation to discussion on art and technology as well as photography plain, re: Marc, Lynn, Ken Lo, Rico, et al. Of course Shu-Hsien, and possibly his connection to Finney, if this situation is still as was. Ken Lo's notes and pictures with Marc's give the references which Yeo Yin Khoon brought me to this forum in the first place to find, and he himself seems very interested in notes, mentioning also the useful comparison on
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.

I've tried to understand some distinctions between the Canon S50 and the TVS-D - of course considering whether either can be a good choice within a personal bound of not carrying a D-or-otherwise SLR or prosumer (G3) size, while appreciating their sure benefits, and wishing for a particular level of ability for working into a variety of available light.

At first glance, the two pocket cameras have many similarities as we know. Hard to agree with design where they don't, in fact, such as leaving out full manual control and RAW on the Contax, but this could be acceptable with some flavours of an opened mind about 'photographic expression balanced into contemporary facets of life', and with some ideas about peculiarities and limitations of digital anyway so far.

My backstop on all this, not to be mentioned again, could be an inherited Leica M2-Epson 3200 scan combination.

So, what does one see with a Canon S50? At first, apparent clarity of resolution to limit of sensor, even reasonably clean corners, at first seeming quite nicely done. Successful attenuation of most issues with CCD-lens interaction blooming (blue-violet fringe on contrast). Nice features, full manual settings, RAW. Well-controlled noise, agreeable color.

What about TVS-D, then, by comparison? Quite evident brilliance and tonal range on many types of pictures, supported into difficult conditions by very impressive lack of flare, surely that T* lens. Apparently much greater preservation of detail into shadow gradations. Maybe a color issue or two, probably manageable. Consistently visible noise, of a kind which in fact does not feel to detract so much from pictures. Less control, but perhaps adequate to very many purposes and actual constraints, perhaps fit in fact to some view of digital-photography practice.

And, with the TVS-D also, full 5MP images which appear as consistently to show a difficult to describe but definitely lower and grittier resolution. Which prominent fault seems to disappear into almost velvety smoothness and dynamic range, when the image is res&led into 'next lower size; - 3 MP or so.

Beside those pictures from the TVS-D, the at-first seemingly detailed pictures of the Canon then appear quite 'flat', generally 'milky' in all cases, even when there is no flare likely to suspect. At full 5 MP, the strict resolution superiority does not seem to deliver the sense of presence in image details that the unusual look ot the TVS-D seems to. The Canon shadow detail appears definitely less, and doesn't come up by increasing post-camera contrast, even after apparently standard raw processing (that could be adjusted if the tools allow it). At downs&le size or normal viewing distance, the TVS-D seems to have more perception of detail even though it does not strictly resolve. These are my impressions.

There are very attractive pictures posted here, and they are all down-s&led - perhaps because in the art Marc mentions of his own photography and I am sure others see for themselves on own, the reduced size just does look good, so that is posted. Contrariwise, all reviews so far criticize the 5 MP TVS-D pictures as being just 'average' in resolution - I think walking around this qualitative difference that is not so simple to describe.

On the
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site, the full-size images are present, if one drills down far enough - I was fooled the first time. And that's where I learned first this distinction - because the TVS-D in relative wide-angle shots with detail (the full boat canal, the full Danish platz with statue, for ex&les) looked considerably better than the S50, but the roles were a bit reversed every time one drilled to the full-resolution basis.

Again, this is simply what I can find to see. The gritty full resolution is less well assured by Steves-Digicam and DCresource tests, due to their flippant attitude and apparent lack of care, but it is there, and I believe it by now. I asked Jeff of DCresource if he'd missed what Marc discovered of the default lower-res Jpeg default on the TVS-D, but he said he wasn't interested in looking into it, and I actually don't think that's the problem now.

So what can we ask? First, I have some feeling it would be very interesting to discover through connections such as Finney's, whether there is as seems likely from reading between lines so far that Kyocera-Contax decided to have the TVS-D work just in the way I seem to find, given it is accurate without having both cameras to try.

If they did, given the ex&le of Canon etc. for the chip, I think they did it with purpose. I would not be surprised to find that this purpose is the quality of a 'final print' photo. Finney might like to argue that with a clean &lifier chain, not suppressing the CCD's own noise actually can help preserve shadow detail between the bits of A/D resolution - a form of interpolation, and known technique.

As some substantiation for this detective chase, another camera I've looked a bit into is the Leica D-Lux (latest TVS-size Bauhaus-case release). It is different, but does apparently also possess considerable image noise, again not unpleasant, and with seeming its own non-Canon take on improved picture tonal range. There is at least one comment that they designed for print quality, not substantiated.

If these speculations are true, then there really is the result of a distinct take on image quality from Contax. I'm pretty interested that it should be so, as the impression is that this goes some real distance towards relieving the constant dynamic range and 'tonal snap' holdbacks in less than EOS-1d or Sigma digital photography. I would think that if this were substantiated, others in the field would be interested. It's very healthy for we who take pictures, and it's very healthy also for the industry to have individually valid distinctions between cameras.

Of course, it could be as the reviews like to suggest, that it's just a matter of results in an electronics company trying to do photography, as others besides Kyocera do. Maybe I am really missing something in this speculation, and it's just true that the TVS has some very nice qualities, but should be treated in them as a lower-pixel camera. That would be good to know, and decide on, too.

If we really understood this, then it would be clearer whether the right kind of raw processing could bring the S50 into the apparent TVS regime of contrast, snap, and tonal range, or whether the T* lens is a completely key factor.

I'm going to hold onto my developing imaginations, that camera companies ought to be a lot more interested in opening up their in-camera firmware as well as raw formats to outside and definitely multiple developments. In a sense, those building specialized RAW converters for high-end DSLR's are already doing it. The result would be equivalent of the differences in film, with attendant ability to fit to styles and desires. The key would be that you could reconfigure your own camera - after buying one on lenses, form factors etc. which become the more important. I am sure others will have their own ideas on how much this might do for both expressive possibilities and equally for real-economic possibilities of markets.

But first I think we need to get a really good idea, how that set of straw hat and cup pictures so carefully arranged by Marc are really different - because they surely are.

Hope I haven't asked too much of the forum's intents, and the advantage is that we will not know less if there's not more to understand. Off before I lose nerve to send it ;).

regards to all, Clive (Steward)
 
Y

yinkhoon

Clive, wow!

You have really gone deep into the investigations! I can't add anymore to that.. will have to leave that to the experts around here.

I can only add humbly my own assessment from another perspective, that in handling, the contax just feels great in your hands and invites you to use it to take pictures, even without use of the LCD.. because the viewfinder is bright and nice and there's a nice monochrome LCD display on top too. And there is so much space for your hands to grip the camera tight and comfortably (unlike the Sony DSC-V1 where the left hand doesn't know where to place itself).

So when I hold the Contax in my hands, it just feels much better than either the Sony V1 or the Canon S50. Guys, do go try the cameras out at a camera shop near you.

Ha.. just trying to contribute something on a level which I do understand. A simple level, but one which can make taking pictures a more pleasurable experience.
 

narrbl

Active Member
Hello again, Yin Khoon (I am hoping guessed right way here),

Yes, I probably overshot a little, trying to get these messages in while there's time on this holiday. Quite a pleasant evening here now, after the heat of the day....will go for another walk and enjoy, maybe even watch a film. Anyway, we will see what can be learned on the TVS topic, and what good it does us. I think again of how much I enjoy some of your shots.

I liked what you said on the other famous case - there is always something to learn about ways of bringing out what's important, and there has been a lot of that from several persons here to see. You know I both fully appreciate Austin's sense, and also agree with him and others, wish to say even if I am surely a new personality here, that it would be good to have Finney open to return.

What causes such fireworks seems a case of the times. I have even been intrigued in my business in Europe, to work with China-rim colleagues, and find that what I may have learned from my father's Chinese influence, and from my own time in Korea, persons also are quite insistant to have other orders now beside it. In common with new arrangements we try to work out in all the world, no traditional pattern of respect is to be fully allowed, if it has to be in traditional form.

And yet, there is a nice mystery hiding in that. Respect really can be there, as it naturally wants to be, across any difference, which includes age. What any other individual composes of themselves and their lives, we always respond to. Age makes that natural, and younger persons always feel it. But I seem to see they as fervently will resist this, if they can't feel that a kind of memory, you could call it for ex&le, that the fuller Confucian relationships actually holds - and that is just a way to talk about something, for I seem to find the same across several cultures.

Once teaching in Korea, I learned that professors have just as much responsibility to student as respect is expected to make responsibility in reverse. To be responsible as a teacher, I think you have to clearly respect the student, who they are, so you can see how to do what you should.

I think that's like what younger persons ask of elder today, to see and appreciate how the full orders of a younger person's life are just as valid as the orders they will make later - as we do in our own. It's all become more dynamic in contemporary affairs, business and designing part of business especially, for each of us. At the same time, we have better frameworks to see that we don't lose but rather gain in useful perspective for ourselves, to appreciate and work with the harmonies of anyone else's. Then the medium for creation occurs, not to mention surprising friendship that wanted to.

Too much talk again, probably as I am asked these days really to be 'elder brother', with no escape. It's in my mind that the only thing that works with real family situations is when the one who needs the respect for their own accomplishment from others gets it - then things finally can be smoother ;).

Well, I am content, but need a joke, and remember your good humor, Yin Khoon. Thanks.

Best to you, in morning there.
 
Y

yinkhoon

Greetings to you too, Rico.

Conpact digicams with small sensors are not suitable for portraits for desirable small depth of field, agreed. But apart from snapshots, they are also suitable for landscapes where everything in focus is agreeable (unles you insist on a wide-angle lens).

Come to think of it, compact film cameras were never that suitable for portraits too or any other work where creative control over depth of field is desired. They all have mostly horrendously small aperture sizes. Even the contax tvs III has max aperture 3.7 to 6.7, and that's already quite nice compared to some in the market which can go to f12.

So if I look at it from that perspective, I think I shall not be greedy and shall accept compact digicam's limitations where depth of field is concerned. But low noise and usable high ISOs (just 400 speed will do too!), that's what i shall fervently hope for with each new generation of digicams that I anxiously look foward to at each year's Photokina.
 

loom

Active Member
Dear Clive,

I bought a Canon S30 along with the underwater housing last summer to do underwater photography. However, the more I try it on land the more I dislike it. The pictures were so lifeless and dull that even my old Leica Z2X with negatives can have much better results.

From the s&le pictures of S50 I saw online, the color, the tonality stays about the same. The speculation is furthur confirmed by Finney, who told me that though the S50 uses the new generation of chip inside, the Digic processor ( Finney used the word notorious and dump to describe the processor), the chip is simply combined the functions of three different chips used in the second generation, e.g. the one S30 used. Canon did this mainly to reduce the cost/heat produced/battery life.Canon also add some features and more computing power to the new chip, but the basic algorithym about noise reduction/color reproduction it incorporated stays about the same. I don't think I'll ever consider buying a SX0 in the near future, given that my eyes are so used to the photos produced by G2.

In my understanding, there is no way to give a raw image a new life, better tonality by toning in the software. I had tried to play with the raw file S30 produced but was in vain. I totally understand that I am not an expert in dealing with RAW but again this can be furthur confirmed technically. There is one very hot domain in engineering now, the analog front end, which can really improve the images greatly. And the A/D process as well. I think it might be reasanable to compare to CD players, which has D/A processor inside. Different CD player can give very different sounds, and though it is always the &lifier and speacker which are more important in producing a nice tone, a cheap and bad CD player can ruin it all. There are CD players costs way beyond my reach and there are also plenty of them that a person with average income can easily have dozens of them.

IMHO what differentiates the image quality of TVSD from others is the lens and the chips/processing after it. How many percentage of these two factors are, however, is something beyond my understanding. Regarding the differences in full jpg and downsized s&les, I'll ask Finney.

Finney will mail me a CD which has 50MB/each pictures taken by TVS-D. If you are interested in it I can send you a copy as well.

BTW, if I am going to buy a c&act digicam, I will go for TVS-D. However, the prices here in the US is much higher than the price in Japan, Hong Kong and Taiwan, just like the case for the Contax G system. Finney bought the camera for 670 in japan but in the US it costs about 850-950. I found a site, hotbuyelectronics.com selling for around 760. But still, I can wait till I go to Taiwan, probably at the end of the year.
 

narrbl

Active Member
Dear Shu-Hsien,

Have to apologise as it is holiday weekend here and spending time with family and so forth. Also, your messages have a lot to think about - enjoying considering it. Thus, more will follow.

Just for the moment, though, a thought on a side of your S30 comments - had you had a chance to see if Breeze Browser could make some degree of that 'new life' you were looking for via raw?
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might be interesting, and the link from it which explains the 'combined' processing option especially. I have to say I've asked and found this combined option isn't user-controllable, too bad as it seems would then to offer even more. Worth looking also at the Fred Miranda references for deepened ideas, and BB itself you could for free download and try.

The other things you've mentioned makes me feel you and Finney are truly at the heart of the questions TVSD vs. s50, and will respond next time, definitely also take you up on kind offer.

The above kind of post-processing may improve on some things from the Canon, but I am skeptical it can get at what the Digic has already done to the image (someone on another forum made me smile by calling it 'nutellaizing' - if you don't know that's a kind of hazelnut spread for breakfast toast popular in Europe), nor the entirely inter-related choices on the analog and a/d part of the chain. Nor of course, put back in what the T* lens makes possible. And if attentiveness on the other sides of these issues also of course remain ;).

Still, it might get you something for your enjoyment on photos of S30 you already have. I must say you've offered much enjoyment also with the nature of your very thoughtful expressions in Chinese history, and will return on that too.

Thanks and best regards, Clive
 
K

kaisern

>=20 >=20 >=20 > [A simple question to ask. When using digital point and shot like TVS-D = or > Canon IXUS 400, I discovered that in many situation the TVS-D mixed ambie= nt > light much better than N1 or ND using a delicate Contax TLA360 flashgun, = same > thing to IXUS 400 vs. EOS 1D or 1Ds with 550 flash gun, anyone knows why? > Regards, kaisern] >=20 >=20 >=20
 

ksklo

Well-Known Member
Dear Kaisern,

Unfortunately I cannot answer your question directly, but in my case I am having no problem mixing ambient light and fill-in flash on subject for both my N1 and my Canon 10D. But then again, I never deliberately use longer than normal shuttle speed to capture more ambient light. I do occasionally take longer exposure with flash fill-on on my M7 and the effect is quite nice. On most of my setups, I dialed in +1/3 flash compensation on my flash and bounce directly into the ceiling if indoors, and can expect descent results with TTL.

I do have a question for you, though. As you mentioned you are having success with TVSD with flash, do you set it up on a table tripod and capture ambient light with Av plus flash (set to night time auto flash or whatever it is called) to fill in, and was flash compensation dialed in at -1? In my experience, my TVSD flash performance is quite unpredictable. Under the exact same lighting conditions, I have gotten some overexposed and some underexposed pictures randomly. I am still trying to figure out the most effective way to control the flash on the TVSD.

Regards,
Ken
 

ksklo

Well-Known Member
Kaisern,
One more thing, with all film cameras when flash is used in my case, I usually shoot negatives so exposure latitude is greater, thus leading to better effects. In the case of 10D, I shoot in RAW and honestly, I do find both over and under exposed digital "negatives" at times which need to be processed by the computer.
Regards,
Ken
 

loom

Active Member
Dear Kaisern,

I am wondering if the pre-flash on the digicam can cause the difference.

Shu-Hsien
 
K

kaisern

>=20 >=20 >=20 > [Thanks, I almost set the flash at =AD1/3 permanently, and it works excelle= nt. > However, as T3, the flash on the TVS-D has effective range within 2-3 met= ers > so I have been shooting everything in the said range. The shadow area is > still weak with TVS-D, noticeable noise, but when the lighting is good, T= VS-D > is no question among the best. Regards. Kasiern] >=20 >=20 >=20
 
K

kaisern

>=20 >=20 >=20 > [I am not sure about this point. It seemed to be that flash on Contax MM= /ME > or N never got to the level of Nikon or Canon. Canon sensor=B9s weak point= =AD > personal point of view =AD in shooting poor lighting environment against a > strong point of source of light, is not very good but it does great job i= n > almost any other situation. Regards, Kaisern] >=20 >=20 >=20
 

ksklo

Well-Known Member
I have just posted some night shots of TVSD vs. Canon 10D on the following link,
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. Dirk, I tried to put them onto "test photos" but it has not been accessible for awhile. I notice there were several commments that stated TVSD resolves better shadow details than others such as the S50, but that is contrary to what I have found. I did not have a S50 handy to make a more reasonable comparison, but based on the pictures I took, the shadow details are in no comparison to 10D. I did a comparison with S50 earlier on but I don't have the files with me anymore.

I also agree with Clive's earlier comment that at full resolution, perhaps the S50 would render better details than the TVSD. Undoubtedly though, the TVSD produces much better color rendition, and the pictures are far superior than the flat images taken by the S50. IMHO, the relatively lack of details can be compensated by the richly saturated color rendition. Unless you blow it up real big, I don't think the detail difference really matter that much. Besides, remember this is only a small P&S and it really shouldn't be compared to a large and heavy slr. My only complaint, though, is the lack of RAW. As I recall Marc had mentioned in one of his posts that he can recover most of the TVSD pictures using photoshop 7. I use the same but do not know how to compensate effectively for either over or under exposed shots. Do you just play with levels, curves, brightness and contrast? Or is there anything else that you could use to improve the quality?

Ken
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Ken,

we installed a couple of months ago a new photogallery. The old testphoto section within the normal galery is not vaailable anymore. Just click in the navigation bar on the top on "testphotos". Images have to be approved by the webmaster before you can see them (after the upload).
 

fotografz

Well-Known Member
Ken, Compairing a D10 and TVSD is an Apples and Oranges situation. The sensor of the D-10 is much larger than any P&S digital camera. Picture quality isn't just a matter of meg count, sensor size does matter.

The sensor of the Canon S-50 is the same size as the TVSD. It is a better comparison as the spec's of the 2 cameras are almost identical...except the Canon produces RAW files and the TVSD does not. However, as I've said before, the RAW processing of S-50 (and G2,3,&5) files does NOT include the same level of adjustment you get with D-10 files even when using the same RAW developer program (Canon File Viewer Utility, version 1.3.0.7). You cannot adjust exposure on S-50 RAW files like you can with the D-10 RAW files. The RAW adjustments for the Canon P&Ss are remedial and almost useless because PS does most of the functions better.

Again, you can review the controlled tests performed in studio between the TVSD and the Canon S-50 by clicking on the Test Gallery in the menu at the top of this page. Be sure to compare the TVSD images marked "Fine" as the first ones I uploaded were set on the camera's default "Medium" level resolution setting and had to be redone.
 
M

mike_nunan

Hi Marc,

I'm intrigued by your comment re RAW processing on images from the Powershot G-series cameras. I was thinking of picking up a G3 for the specific purpose of quickly digitising neg images using a copier attachment. These images are purely for cataloguing, not printing, so top-notch quality is not paramount, but I know that this method of capture is likely to be pretty borderline even for this purpose. I have just borrowed a Coolpix 950 and have the Nikon neg copier adapter, and from the results so far have concluded that more bit depth would be preferable. Working from RAW files would also seem like a good idea, as I could then effectively profile the camera for each film type and turn the neg/pos conversion process into a more accurate process that could be automated.

Therefore, I'd selected the G3 as the best choice of camera, on the basis that it has 12-bit converters and offers RAW file support. Can you elaborate on the limitations with the RAW conversion please? If the RAW feature of the G3 is of limited worth, that opens up the field to include other cameras that I might prefer to have for general-purpose P&S use, such as the TVSD.

TIA

-= mike =-
 

loom

Active Member
Dear Marc,

I was told that some of the functions of the Digic processor was disabled in the lower end digicams.

Shu-Hsien
 
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