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Andrew Reid

D750 image quality - does it match 5D Mark III 14bit uncompressed raw?

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Shots below are ISO 800, F1.4, same lens, same lighting.

 

In particular the colours are very similar.

 

After both were graded I couldn't tell the two apart.

 

The kicker...

 

For this clip, a few seconds long... D750 weighed in at 10MB and 5D3 raw file at 500MB. What's more, the D750 grade took me about 10 seconds to match the clip from the 5D Mark III. Quick change of the gamma curve in Resolve, and a saturation boost, then done. The auto white balance did a superb job in-camera. The 5D Mark III raw I can sit and grade for hours. Obviously you have more control, more freedom, but at what cost?

 

I just want the image... and the D750 appears to give me that.

 

S-LOG2 on the A7S does too... but it's a bit of a hassle.

 

5D Mark III 14bit uncompressed raw

 

5d3raw.jpg

 

Nikon D750 compressed H.264 at 24Mbit/s (24p)

 

d750comp.jpg

 

By the way, you can tell the difference. The smooth gradation and transition in the mirror of low contrast shades looks blockier on the Nikon shot and the noise grain is finer on the 5D Mark III.

 

However this wasn't shot via uncompressed HDMI and the difference isn't large enough in my opinion to suffer the file sizes... of raw OR ProRes for that matter, unless you have a lot of fast camera movement, tricky lights and motion blur to contend with then the Atomos Ninja Star on the back of a D750 will really help.

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Wow Andrew, that is pretty convincing.  I can't wait for you to release a/b and then side-by-side video footage of ML Raw on the 5d3 vs. D750... Any shot at you doing that while also including the a7s and gh4 in the mix to have a real conversation starter on the 4 main DSLRs in today's market?

 

Thanks!

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I you go nose up to the screen pixel peeping, the 5D Mark III 14bit uncompressed raw does have the advantage (pretty sure you focused the lens on the same point, but the 5D has the crisper lampdetails, also the text on the bottle and magazines is clearer to read by a tad bit). Although roughly matched, the 5D has a bit nicer warmth to it.

 

But sitting back, looking at it as big thumbnails, is hard to tell much difference at all, certainly none that's equal to the difference in filesize and effort that goes into getting a shot out of the camera and then looking like that. And all in-camera? It will give you a lot quicker turnarounds. You can be out shooting more!

 

Where time is valuable and turnarounds need to be kept short, the D750 seems to make a lot of sense. Curious to what uncompressed external recording is able to get out of it. This might be a great allrounder, keeping it small and quick when it needs to be and go all-in amazing quality, if that is what a shoot needs.

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They are very close in terms of colour and contrast.  But when viewed at native resolution, the 5D3 has the edge for detail.  The bottle and lamp stand out from the background and look 3d.  The D750 seems to have a fine layer of smudge over it.  The bottle looks like a flat object.  You cant sense its shape.

 

However, when the image is moving it may be harder to tell them apart.  And if this is the level of D750 detail at 60p, can the 5d3 raw even match that?

 

Lets also not forget that 5d3 raw is behind 4k cams downscaled to 1080 in terms of detail.  So if detail is paramount, you arn't getting the best with 5d3 raw anyway.

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I love raw on the 5D Mark III. Magic Lantern worked a large miracle with it.

 

The thing is, the more the practical realities hit home, the more I am looking to make a few trade offs in image quality in order to get more manageable file sizes and a more reliable running camera.

 

I haven't yet had a single shoot where raw recording did not stop unexpectedly.

 

And I am missing shots because I can't record too much material due to space considerations. I recently did a shoot of a band in a music studio, 4 songs and each musician filmed separately laying down a track. Drums, guitar, bass, keyboard and vocals. I shot it with the A7S at 50Mbit/s, H.264 XAVC-S and ended up with 80GB of material after the 8 hour shoot was over. Can you imagine how much that would be in raw?

 

This is where pixel peeping fails and fails badly. It's actual of zero benefit when you have a situation as I described above. We can talk about compression artefacts and workflow until the cows come home, but if you have to start missing shots, or managing data whilst you should be shooting, it really interferes with the creative process.

 

Still a big fan of raw but... you've gotta pick the right tool for the job.

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Absolutely, raw is still a benchmark for ultimate image quality. Let's be clear, I'm not denying that.

 

For me, now it's all about how close we can get to that beauty....but with more practical solutions like the GH4, A7S and D750.

 

I am over regular raw shooting now, as I ran out of space at the local aircraft hanger where I stored my hard drives.

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 I agree with jcs's points on the benchmark, but Andrews counterpoints ring true for most who can't handle the workflow and HD space needed for raw.  I can't say I am ready to sacrifice image though.  I think the GH4 and a7s in particular match or best the 5d3 raw in some areas and this has yet to be seen with the brand new d750...like I said I would love for andrew to have static human subjects and compare the a7s, gh4, and d750, maybe even ML Raw for kicks.

 

That would truly give us a picture of which system is where.

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It does look pretty good. Better than I would have expected for sure. But at this point in the game, I don't really understand the frustration with the ML workflow and file sizes. Why not just use a program like MLRawViewer to quickly and non-destructively color balance your shots, apply a LUT if desired, and export to ProRes 22 or ProRes LT? Sure, it takes some time to process your files. But at least that way, the massive MLV raw files never even have to touch your hard drive, and you've got a cleaner starting point.

 
Also, media is getting more affordable. I was surprised to see that KomputerBay 256GB 1066x CF cards have come down another $100 and can now be purchased new for $300. 

 

Unfortunately, there is no hack for the lack of an opposable LCD screen on the 5D. In my opinion, that is the most frustrating thing about the 5D3.

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

like I said I would love for andrew to have static human subjects and compare the a7s, gh4, and d750, maybe even ML Raw for kicks.

That would truly give us a picture of which system is where.


that would be extremely helpful. What I want is a shot of a human-being on the 5D, in Cinestyle and Raw, the A7s, in S-log2, the GH4 in CinelikeD and the D750 in Nikon Flat and any other cameras at hand, hopefully with the files being downloadable ungraded. I woupd really love to compare skin tones of these different companies but don't have access to the Nikon or A7s (or the 5D now).

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Andrew, don't you know if the picture from the A7s matches the one from the D750, someway?
I was thinking that using for istance the Sony Cine2 PP6, it is less versatile then the S-log2 PP7 but it doesn't need to be graded so much. Maybe it behaves closer to the D750 flat profile then the S-Log.
In this way A7s and D750 can work in the same set as camera A and camera B without many postproduction problems.

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Guest fe4a3f5e8381673ce80017d29a8375f1

I still don't understand why more attention isn't being paid to 10bit out of the gh4. Attach a ninja to it, shoot in 4k but output 1080 10bit 422 over hdmi and you have beautiful colour rich prores ready to go. From the little I've seen it can be stunning. A tiny bit of moire may creep in, but presumably noise and compression artefacts in the shadows (the main weakness of the gh4 IMO) will be a lot more pallateable. And considering 4k from the gh4 is already great to grade, 10bit prores must be superb. Losing the ability to crop in post and having a tiny ninja star attached somewhere is a price I'd be happy to pay.

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Matt,

 

It's because for whatever tech reason, the GH4 doesn't process colors the way 5 years of 5D2 have spoiled us. 10 bit isn't going to help that out of the GH4. The G series are very sharp, but have the video/bad skin tones out of the gate. You can post it, but it still doesn't look great (to my eyes and many others). Main reason (besides sensor size) you read ad nauseum about people returning their GH4's to B&H in droves.

 

Go and search examples for yourself.

 

The new Nikon D750/D810 process colors beautifully..really gorgeous video with a nice cinematic look..much like a Canon EOS camera. The GH4 fails in this department miserably.

 

$25K and lower Canon and Nikon rule colors. Have tons of cash? Buy an Alexa/Amira and be done with it.

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It is a bit normal that people are interested in this camera because it has just been launched and looks to have big potential. It does not mean that the gh4 is not good anymore. For many it is the colour science, for others the full frame, low light, Dr etc.

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The GH4 and the Natural picture profile provide decent skintones:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc2LXH_MsQQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc2LXH_MsQQ

(Shot on the GH4, GoPro Hero 3, and iPhone 5S)

 

We recently purchased FilmConvert: it has a GH4+Natural calibration and it does a pretty good job moving the GH4 into a more filmic look. We prefer the color of the A7S with a tweaked Slog2 or CINE picture profile for 1080p (and 5D3 RAW is still the best for skintones), however the GH4 is pretty nice for 4K with a little post work. It will be interesting to see Nikon's entry to 4K video.

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What I find amazing from the d750 footage is that it holds a lot of detail in the highlights, this wasn't the case in the d800 and a lot of older h264 cameras.

If you want the ML raw sharpness you can try to load the shots into Photoshop and apply the Camera Raw Filter, pretty amazing how it sharpens things, although it's terribly slow.

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jasonmillard81- the models are indeed beautiful; the GH4 with the Natural profile does a nice job with skintones. The 1.x firmware on the GH4 was a little too overprocessed/clean and required a bit of post work to look more filmic and less like video. Haven't tried the 2.0 firmware; some reports are that it looks more filmic/less-processed straight from the camera. All the GH4 shots were 1080p 60fps VFR mode which is probably closer to 720p in terms of actual resolution. Here's a 1080p vimeo version (just one model):

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