Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Happy First Birthday Kit Yi

Happy First Birthday Kit Yi

I'm too tired to write anything but daddy loves you very much. Happy Birthday b. Time really flies.

posted by Wye Jon at Tuesday, October 28, 2008 (permalink) | 0 comments | trackbacks

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Some Trial pictures with the Nikon Creative Lighting System (CLS)

Kit Yi 12 October 2008

Kit Yi 14 October 2008

What's CLS? Basically it's Nikon's built in to camera wireless flash triggering technology. This allows me to fire a flash that's not attached to my camera body. As I've only got one flash I can't think of many ways to play with it. If anyone has suggestions please leave a comment :)

posted by Wye Jon at Sunday, October 19, 2008 (permalink) | 0 comments | trackbacks

Somebody's Birthday is coming!

Somebody's birthday is coming up!

posted by Wye Jon at Sunday, October 19, 2008 (permalink) | 0 comments | trackbacks

Monday, October 13, 2008

Nikon D90: The effect of VR in Movie Mode

I bet this is something that has been on many people's mind. Does VR (Vibration Reduction, Nikon's term for the stabilised lens) work when taking videos with the Nikon D90. It does! But only if you have a VR lens of course :)

This video was shot using the AF-S Zoom-Nikkor ED 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF DX VR at 200mm (to make hand shake more obvious). The first half of the video is with VR off. You'll hear a click sound halfway through the video. That's the sound of me turning on the VR switch on the lens. The second half of the video is with VR on.

I think you can clearly see the effect that VR has on the videos. This is the same effect you see thru your camera's viewfinder when taking pictures if you are focused and have VR on.

posted by Wye Jon at Monday, October 13, 2008 (permalink) | 4 comments | trackbacks

Thursday, October 09, 2008

My 2 seconds of fame (syok sendiri)

Most of those who know me will know I'm working for HP now. Yesterday HP announced the building of its new mega campus in Cyberjaya and the DPM was there. Where the DPM goes that's where TV3 is and because of that I've got my first TV appearance and my 2 seconds of fame.

I'm at 6:38 :)

And here's a screen shot to prove it.

buletin utama 002

posted by Wye Jon at Thursday, October 09, 2008 (permalink) | 0 comments | trackbacks

Nikon D90 Movie Test Shot

Here's a sample video I shot with the Nikon D90 in my living room.

One of the D90's biggest claim to fame is the video functionality. It's the first DSLR that can record video.

Took me a little figure out how to record videos because I haven't had time to read the manual. Basically all you do is press the LV (live view) button to activate live view then click on OK to begin recording. You end recording by clicking on the OK button again.

When the D90 first launched along with the Chase Jarvis campaign (Google for it if you want to know more) the highlight of the campaign was the video feature. In short the videos they shot were awesome.

In truth the D90's video capabilities aren't that great.

In the embedded video I was trying to show off the depth of field effect. That's where I separate the subject from the background by having a sharp in focus subject and a nicely blurred background.

It's a cool effect but you have to focus the lens manually. There's absolutely no autofocus support when you're doing video on the D90. Also if you tend to have shaky hands you must remember there's no built in stabilisation in the camera too (note to self: test video with VR on).

One other flaw you can see with the video is the flickering. I believe this is caused by the fluorescent lights in the living room which most people probably have.

There's another problem called the rolling shutter problem. I shot another video to illustrate the problem but couldn't get it uploaded. I'll try again tonite then blog about it.

posted by Wye Jon at Thursday, October 09, 2008 (permalink) | 7 comments | trackbacks

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Nikon D90 High ISO Test Shots

I've finally gotten my D90. I've wanted one months before it was even announced. So when it announced in August I couldn't wait to get my hands on it and now I have :) I'm not too sure about the other features of the camera but I got it primarily for the High ISO performance.

First impressions:
  1. It's not that big. I knew all along that it was going to be D80 sized but still...
  2. The LCD screen rocks!
  3. So many buttons! I actually feel a little overwhelmed. Shows how much of a noob I am.
  4. Same thing for the menu. Going to take me some time to get familiar with it.
  5. Took some pictures and wondered why they look so washed out. Quickly changed the camera to use the vivid profile :D
For those who don't know, the ISO number basically represents the sensitivity of the camera sensor. Typically you will see ISO numbers like ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800 and so on. The higher the ISO number, the higher you sensor's sensitivity is.

Without going into the details, a higher sensor sensitivity enables you to shoot pictures better in situations where there is insufficient ambient light (like in a badly lit room). However there is one major problem with higher sensitivities and that is the problem of "noise".

In short, noise are the grainy artifacts you see when you shoot pictures using a digital camera. The higher the ISO number, the worse the noise.

Take a look at a series of test shots I did using several different ISO values. I turned off the noise reduction when shooting these pics. Also I'm depending 100% on ambient light (i.e. no flash!). The pictures are JPGs taken directly from the camera.

ISO 800
ISO 800

ISO 1600
ISO 1600

ISO 3200
ISO 3200

ISO 6400
ISO 6400

These aren't the full size images (they have been resized to fit the blog) so the noise isn't too clear but it's obviously there in the ISO 6400 and ISO 3200 pictures (hint: when looking for noise always look at the dark areas). I think we're also seeing some color shifting in the ISO 6400 picture.

Now let's look at the 100% crops of the above pictures to get a better idea of the noise problem.

ISO 800 crop
ISO 800

ISO 1600 crop
ISO 1600

ISO 3200 crop
ISO 3200

ISO 6400 crop
ISO 6400

Now do you understand the problem with noise? I'm very happy with what I'm seeing in the ISO 800 picture. ISO 1600 ain't perfect but I think it's still good. Unfortunately things seem to go to hell from ISO 3200 onwards.

I'm probably never going to use ISO 6400 again but the noise problem in the ISO 3200 picture can be fixed somewhat in post processing. Here's an example:

ISO 3200
ISO 3200


ISO 3200 NR
ISO 3200, noise reduced in post production

ISO 3200 crop
ISO 3200


ISO 3200 NR crop
ISO 3200 100% crop, noise reduced in post production

Not too bad, eh? So far I love what I see. Of course you can't compare the D90 to the full frame monsters like the D700 and D3. Those are superior but cost much much more.

posted by Wye Jon at Tuesday, October 07, 2008 (permalink) | 3 comments | trackbacks

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