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Non-Low Light Visual Noise

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Justin Renaud
Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 11, 2013 at 2:42:29 pm

I have been filming with a Panasonic Gh2 for about 2 years now and I own some pretty quality lenses (Voigtlander 25 f/.95 and Olympus 45 1.8). No matter what I have tried, I can't figure out why when I shoot outside, and pretty far from my subject, I get tons of visual noise (crackling). I use ND filters whenever I shoot outside during the day so that I am able to shoot pretty wide open. Is that my issue? Am I causing the noise by shooting wide open instead of dropping them to like f/8? Thanks for your help...I have had a hard time finding guidance on this specific issue and I feel like it is really holding me back.


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Steve Crow
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:03:37 am

Perhaps if you posted a screen grab showing this crackling/noise the issue would be easier to diagnose. Shooting wide open by itself should not be causing any issues. Some areas I would test out would be:

* The ND filter
* Trying some different lenses....
* ISO? (your ISO should be really low if you are outside and need an ND filter)

I have a strong feeling that whatever it is that you are describing is not noise - it may be a very dirty sensor or something going wrong in the camera electronics - particularly when you say crackling that doesn't sound like classic noise to me. Do some tests and see if you can narrow the issue down.

Steve Crow
Crow Digital Media
http://www.CrowDigitalMedia.com


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Mike Smith
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 9:33:54 am

"crackling" gives me more of a sound impression than a visual damage impression.
What's your ISO setting ...?


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Justin Renaud
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 2:14:46 pm

Thanks for the responses...I apologize as crackling appears to have been a distracting word to choose. Below I am including a link an example of what I talking about. I realized it isn't the greatest composed shot that ever was, but it was a good example of what I have been dealing with. I have tried this with multiple lenses and have the same issue. That Voigtlander lens is an expensive piece of glass and I would stunned if it were the culprit. When outside I usually shoot around f/2 and always keep my iso down around 160-320. Hopefully the video clip will be more helpful.
https://vimeo.com/81715335

Thanks


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Steve Crow
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 3:24:21 pm

I am not seeing much, perhaps a tiny bit of moire patterning as the camera tries to resolve the fine detail of the grass but nothing distracting.

Steve Crow
Crow Digital Media
http://www.CrowDigitalMedia.com


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Justin Renaud
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 3:34:57 pm

I am really surprised you feel that way (did you watch it in fullscreen?). There is very little clean detail in the shot. I can see it when I look just about everywhere..especially up in the trees and in the grass. Admittedly this always comes about on a wide shot so is it possible that I am just dealing with normal camera limitations for a Gh2 and I have unreasonable expectations.


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Steve Crow
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 5:40:33 pm

Yes I did watch full screen and I still only saw the camera trying to resolve fine detail in the grass and the tree branches (perhaps some aliasing on the overhanging electrical wires too) and not what I would generally cause digital artifacts/camera noise.

Your question about shooting wide open is interesting as applied to this specific kind of shot since you really don't have a foreground object and nothing specific for the camera to focus on....so when shooting wide open perhaps the camera IS indeed confused. This is worth researching since I don't have a specific answer for you.

Steve Crow
Crow Digital Media
http://www.CrowDigitalMedia.com


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Justin Renaud
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 12, 2013 at 6:07:38 pm

Thanks for your help on this Steve. It is one of those issues where I feel like I had tried everything else and it was the only other idea I could come up with. If you learn anything more about this particular topic, please let me know.

Based on your post, it sounds like I need to adjust my expectations on shots like that based on the cameras ability (or more likely, avoid them altogether.


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Brent Cook
Re: Non-Low Light Visual Noise
on Dec 15, 2013 at 9:15:33 am

I see what you're talking about. It's pretty bad whatever it is. It looks like a combination of really bad aliasing and compression artifacts. Does it look this bad in your NLE at full quality? What were your compression settings? I don't have personal experience with the GH2 but based on what I've read and seen of it, it's certainly capable of better than that. I agree that there's not much point in shooting wide open for a shot like that. I don't see how that would cause this, but you might as well use the sweet spot of the lens when pretty much your whole composition is in focus like in this shot. Plus you wouldn't have to use your ND filter.


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