Saturday, July 29, 2006

DC Watch Impress Tests K100D Shake Reduction: Eye Popping Results

DC Watch Impress has posted 2 really nifty charts of images that detail the effectiveness of the SR (shake reduction) mode with the new K100D. Their coverage of the K100D's features over the last few weeks has been fun to read and I think this new article is the peach of the bunch.

Their test included handheld photos of a scene with electric lights at night taken at intervals from 1/30th of a second to 1 second using the Pentax DA 18-55mm lens that comes with the K100D kit. The settings for the camera were RAW images taken at ASA 200 both with and without SR mode enabled, in two series: one series for the wide angle view at 18mm and another for the zoom view at 55mm. All images were developped with the new Pentax Photo Laboratory 3 software.

The 18mm chart clearly shows effectiveness of SR even at speeds slower than 1/10th of a second. This and the below image are copyright DC Watch Impress, 2006.

The test charts compare pixel level details of various portions of the photos at the interval stages, with and without SR enabled. It's amazing to see streaks of light from shaky 1 sec exposures resolved into merely slightly blurred details, and blurred details resolved into sharp details at 1/10th of a second. It's a comprehensive bit of work that really shows how the K100D's SR function is an incredibly effecient technology. It's apparent that some detail can be saved at almost 5 stops over the proper exposure for typical handheld scenarios with an SLR. The article also includes test shots not used in the chart, but all taken with the K100D in various situations. It's incredible to see the usefullness of the SR in night shots that typically require a higher ISO (grainy) or a tripod, but instead they come out relatively detailed for a 1/6th sec handheld exposure, such as the image below:

Personally, now I'm hoping to see a similar test done with SR and a telephoto zoom, like the Pentax DA 50-200mm ED lens, because over 100mm is an attractive zoom range that many people have trouble with camera shake. Keep up the good work, DC Watch Impress!

Links: English Translation, Original Japanese, 18mm Test, 55mm Test

1 comment:

Florian said...

That sounds (reads) fantastic :-) Looks like PENTAX has finally arrived next to Canon and Nikon (at least regarding the consumer market). Hope it pays off (in marketshare).

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