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Thread: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

  1. #1
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    Default Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    I hope there is a simple answer to this.
    I'm using an E-620 body with a Zeiss 500/8 mirror lens attached.
    I'm focusing on a fence line in full sunlight maybe a couple of Km away.
    With live view 10X I can focus on the wire strands of the fence.
    But when I make the photo (saved as RAW plus Hi Res Jpeg), I can't see the strands in the JPEG image on the camera monitor at 14X. It's like a resolution loss between Live view and the actual taken image.
    So then I opened the RAW file in Olympus Studio, saved it as a 16 bit TIFF, and then opened that in Photoshop. I lifted the histogram a bit and viewed actual pixels. But no strands of wire.
    I'm using a cable release, camera is tripod mounted, IS is off, anti shock is 4 seconds, ISO is 400. Image was not over exposed, in fact a fraction under exposed
    Can anyone suggest where I'm going wrong ?
    It also probably explains why my moon shots are not as detailed as I expected.
    Cheers,
    Alec
    Twin E-620/70-300mm/14-42mm/pinhole lens, plus 8mm FE, Tokina AT-X 90mm macro, and Zeiss 500/8 mirror.

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    Default Re: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    I think I can explain why you don't see much detail when you view your digital image on the back of the camera - you are only seeing the THUMBNAIL version of the jpg image when you view it on the LCD screen on the back. This is very low resolution.


    As far as the raw image in Photoshop, which is still lacking the detail that you were seeing via liveview, I think the difference is between "real life" and a digital photograph of it.


    At first my thinking was that you were comparing a thru-the-viewfinder view vs the raw image later. I think there the difference would be easy to explain - that really is real life (thru the viewfinder of a DSLR). It's like looking thru a telescope or binoculars. But once you make an image out of it, you lose a lot, especially with an older camer like the E-620.


    Even when comparing the liveview version vs the raw result, I think the same thing is happening - the liveview version is MUCH closer to reality. The photo image is the equivalent of many generations removed from reality, given the state of current digital photography technology.


    I have noticed this myself when taking a landscape shot with good equipment (say an E-M10 plus a 12-35 lens; or a Canon 80D with some high-quality lens) - if you pixel peep the raw results, there is smearing in tree leaves and very small details. If I go out with a tripod and a spotting scope, I don't see this - I see much greater sharpness in small details.


    That's what I think, and I don't really think it is too surprising. I think you need one of those high-res, low MP cameras, like a Nikon D5 or a Canon EOS 1DX to get even close to reality in the results. Just MHO.
    Rich
    Olympus E-M10; Panasonic GM5
    m4/3 lenses: Oly 75-300; Oly 14-42 f3.5-5.6 II R; Oly 17 f1.8; Oly 40-150 f4.0-5.6 R; Oly WCON-P01 adapter; Rokinon f7.5 fisheye; Sigma 19 f2.8; Pan 20 f1.7; Pan 12-35 f2.8; Pan 12-32

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    Default Re: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    In terms of what you see on the camera playback, RAH is correct. If you are shooting RAW, the camera doesn't convert the entire RAW image for the LCD review, instead it uses a small thumbnail/preview display that is stored within the RAW. On my E-5 there were two images stored:

    • Preview Image: 1920x1400 pixels
    • Thumbnail Image: 160x120 pixels



    For several of the late model DSLRs, one hack was to switch to saving RAW+JPG. If the camera had a JPG image, it would use the full image from the JPG file for the LCD display. If there was only a RAW file, it would use the Preview Image stored within the RAW file.

    Early DSLRs only used the Preview Image (or Thumbmail Image) that is also stored in the JPG files, but the E-620 is in the 2nd to last generation of the DSLRs, and I think Olympus had switched to using the full JPG file rather than Preview Image.

    As to your display of the RAW file, it depends on the RAW converter, the options you used, and what image size you saved the file at.

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    Default Re: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    Thanks Michael and Rich,
    In camera I'm saving the image as RAW + LSF jpeg.
    I opened the RAW file in Olympus Studio, and converted it to 16 bit TIFF, using default options, and then viewed in PS.
    I admit to knowing nothing about Oly Studio. Best idea would be to study the manual and pixel peep the RAW file in Studio before any other processing.
    At this stage it looks as though the Zeiss Mirotar 500/8 will out resolve a 12Mpix sensor, which is good news in itself.
    Cheers,
    Alec
    Twin E-620/70-300mm/14-42mm/pinhole lens, plus 8mm FE, Tokina AT-X 90mm macro, and Zeiss 500/8 mirror.

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    Default Re: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    Just for fun, you might try RAW + SF jpeg instead of LSF. I vaguely recall that for some cameras there wasn't enough processor power/memory to handle decoding a LSF file, but there was for a LF, so for LF files, it would use the entire image.

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    Default Re: Loss of Detail between Live View and actual image

    Thanks Michael, the image on the camera screen is actually very detailed for a Jpeg. Then I opened the RAW file in Oly Studio and zoomed right in without any processing. There is detail there about the same as the live preview.
    I would say the whole exercise has proved it's easy to lose absolute detail in post-processing. And likely one will never see all the detail when using Jpegs for ease of file sharing.
    Cheers,
    Twin E-620/70-300mm/14-42mm/pinhole lens, plus 8mm FE, Tokina AT-X 90mm macro, and Zeiss 500/8 mirror.

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