Does anyone here have insight into the inner workings of on-camera jpeg processing software?

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by Jock Elliott, Mar 9, 2016.

  1. Jock Elliott

    Jock Elliott All-Pro

    Jan 3, 2012
    Troy, NY
    Curiosity has bit me, again. This time it’s about how different cameras process jpegs.

    Here’s why: I have a fondness for photographing the sky – sunrises, sunsets, clouds structures, and the like. Sunrises and sunsets tend to be problematic. Getting the intensity, the color, the subtleties of hues right has generally been bothersome. With my LX100, I typically have to diddle the jpegs to get them to look something like what I saw in my mind when I took the image. I tried shooting raw and that after a lot of work, the results weren’t as satisfying as the jpegs that camera could produce. I’ve read articles about the difference between the response of the imaging chip and human eye, thinking that was the reason for my frustration.

    Then I bought the OM-D E-M5 with the 12-50, primarily for its dust and moisture resistance and a lens that didn’t extend and retract like a trombone. But – surprise, surprise – it does sunrises and sunsets superbly. Put it in vivid mode, crank in 1/3 stop exposure compensation, and the jpegs look like what I saw. Wow!

    Why? Does Olympus have some secret recipe – 11 herbs and spices – that render the jpegs that way or could any camera be tweaked to get the same results if I were sophisticated enough to make the adjustments? Would changing the lenses change the results I am getting now? If you have any insight or can point me to a resource that would be useful, I’d appreciate it.

    Cheers, Jock
  2. bartjeej

    bartjeej Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Nov 12, 2010
    I think that, given enough experimentation, you can get pretty nice jpegs out of most camera's, provided you can tweak the jpeg settings extensively enough. Many camera makers have turned the jpeg modes like Vivid, Landscape, Vintage etc into caricatures, but you can often get really nice stuff out of them if you change some of the parameters. I think one of the things that Olympus is know for, it its slightly warmer default white balance than most.
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  3. I've found that Olympus does marvellous processing, from the most lowly of P&S up to the top range stuff. Not that I've had any of that. But I have had Oly P&S, superzooms, and I still have my C760uz and XZ-1 and I have never been disappointed with either of them, I also wish I had not sold the Stylus 1020. I have some lovely shots from that.

    Examples follow (of course)
    Stylus 1020
    8574140202_a8b920f426_z.jpg Sunrise and Surf

    6179958727_1c85eff7bc_z.jpg sunsetcc

    25594870021_1cde4dcf4c_z.jpg Lake Macquarie Sunset

    6738241761_1c61cacc41_z.jpg Before Dawn

    7416888856_d8b25407ed_z.jpg Reflected Cloud

    6778014473_0338ae42fd_z.jpg Bright Dawn

    8262035135_9443165b6b_z.jpg 2007 - Pasha Bulker
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  4. Jock Elliott

    Jock Elliott All-Pro

    Jan 3, 2012
    Troy, NY
    Wow, you have certainly made your case (the defense calls no further witnesses) -- those are gorgeous, every last one of them.

    BTW, that bulker looks like it is about to surf up onto the beach . . .

    Thanks for sharing.

    Cheers, Jock
  5. 2007, Jock, thats exactly what it did. There was a huge storm and it was grounded on Nobbys for around 6 weeks before they managed to get it off. It was already grounded when I shot that (and a few others too)