Thread: NDs or Low ISOs

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    NDs or Low ISOs
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    Senior Member roxics's Avatar
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    Just curious, if a camera gave you the option to go down to very low ISOs without hurting image quality, would you prefer that over the use of ND filters? Why or why not?


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    ISO if the image was not degraded. I think they are more flexible as you can move in small increments where NDs are usually full stops. Unless you are using the Sony variable tech but I do not know how that works exactly. Less in front of or behind the glass is always best.


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    I would rather have ultra low ISOs, as long as it doesn't negatively affect dynamic range, contrast, and saturation. I'd like to see a quad ISO sensor that would allow you to shoot from ISO 8 to ISO 51200.


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    Kinda makes you wistful for the days of easily changeable sensors, huh? Ya, having to change sensor reels every 11 minutes and waiting a day or two to check the image was a drag. But it sure was nice to be able to change looks without changing camera brands...
    ----------
    Jim Feeley
    POV Media


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    Quote Originally Posted by Imamacuser View Post
    I would rather have ultra low ISOs, as long as it doesn't negatively affect dynamic range, contrast, and saturation.
    This pretty much sums it up...if sensors had a native ISO of 400/200 (or less) for the best DR and everything else (including less noise as a bonus), I don't think anyone would complain.

    Most cinema cameras have a native ISO of 800...anything above like 1600/2000/3200 is very inconvenient (even indoors), IMO.


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    Senior Member David W. Jones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roxics View Post
    Just curious, if a camera gave you the option to go down to very low ISOs without hurting image quality, would you prefer that over the use of ND filters? Why or why not?
    Depends on what you are trying to achieve. Just get the image into range, or do you also need to affect the depth of field of the shot?


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    If a camera could be engineered that every ISO stop was "native" with no impact to DR/IQ, that would of course be ideal.

    As it is, a quality ND set, VND fader, or something new like this Panavision electronic VND: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BaJ7iuA7Adk are the best options in the meantime.

    Rumor mill states that the new Panasonic organic sensor has controls at a sensor level to dim the voltage on a per-photosite basis and basically act as an electronic variable ND at the sensor level... crazy... so maybe that is the future, but that is a rumor for something which may be very distant in the future... http://image-sensors-world.blogspot....ductor-gs.html

    Today I think the best implementation is the sony electronic ND filters built into the camera. I wish that was on every camera body.


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    If there were no negative consequences, I'd prefer to shoot with the lowest ISO I could to achieve the exposure I wanted/needed. But as we know, with most current cameras/sensors, usually once you drop below the "native" ISO you start to lose DR(or more accurately it shifts and you lose some of your highlight latitude).


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