Shooting @ 16:9

Shooting at 16:9 with the HS20EXR

A number of folks will have looked at the various file options for output for the HS20 as they would do with any camera. Depending upon location (travelling for example) subject matter and any number of other reasons you may want to get as much as you can onto the one SDHC memory card as you can.

As I dont shoot video with these types of camera large memory cards are not as big a concern. I have a couple of class-6, 4 gigabyte cards and they are fine for the photography work I do.
If I set the camera to Large (12mp) @ 16:9 I get 813 shots on a 4 gigabyte card. You may think that that’s a lot but I can easily shoot 800 or more shots at a motor racing event when using burst mode, although I usually only shoot “Top 4” to maintain image file size.
If you are wanting more shots you could switch to 16:9 @ 6Mp giving 1285 images but there may be too much image quality reduction in doing so. It will be up to the photographer at the time to decide what would be appropriate for the current environment.
So why shoot 16:9 format?
Partly as we have widescreen TV’s and LCD monitors in this format. The human eye’s visual acuity is more efficient in a panoramic field of view. For those interested there are some links at the end of this post that make for interesting reading. For me at least looking at an image in 16:9 format like my TV is far more restful to the eye. I notice the same difference looking at photos on my PC monitor as well. When looking at these images I get the impression of being more visually involved with the image. This may sound odd but is something we can all try if we have access to a LCD widescreen monitor or TV.

The following two photos are of the same subject, the old cowshed at the back of our house, shot using standard 4:3 mode and then in 16:9 mode. Both are shot in EXR Resolution Priority mode at the Full sensor resolution. The camera uses the same resolution for both shots but crops the wider shot in camera leaving a 12Mp file size rather than a 16Mp file size. According to my PP software the crop is approx 30% of the original, and this is born out in the second image.

When viewed one after the other I find that the widescreen format gives the impression of being more a part of the image than the more standard box size. One of the really nice features to this is you still get all the resolution and IQ from the 16Mp file but neatly reduced to the wider visual format. This means that detail is preserved and PP work remains a smaller job than it otherwise may have with a smaller image size.

Res Priority @ 16 MP 4:3 Ratio
I have included a number of shots in this format in an album that can be viewed here. 16:9 format gallery.
These images here are the full sized file, just click through to get the larger file and right click and choose “Save As” to download
to your computer.
Settings used for these images are the same as those found below.

EXR Mode = Resolution Priority Settings.Shooting Menu

Image size = Medium 4:3 @ 8 mega pixels.
Image quality = Fine
Film Simulation = Provia (Standard)
WB Shift = Default
Color = Mid
Tone = Std
Sharpness = Hard
Noise Reduction = Low
ISO = 100 (change as required)

Setup Menu
Focus Check = Off (When not using manual focus.)
The AF lag appears more pronounced with the HS10 but firmware updates have seen this now become for the most part no longer a problem.

External Menus & Buttons
White Balance Auto ( change if under lights)
AE ( Photometry) average (changed as required)
AF mode= Center
AF Focusing = Continuous (for most shots)
EV = variable depending on light and location.

For me at least I think we may have found one of the “Sweet Spots” for this camera, where IQ, minimal sensor noise and performance etc.. are all working in tune. There was a similar “Sweet Spot” noted in the HS10 when using the camera in the F 6.4 to 7.1 range, this also gave very good results.
In any event have a play with your camera in this mode and see what you think, you may just be pleasantly surprised.

Some links to articles regarding the 16:9 format.

Posted by R. McKenzie at 2:19 PM





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