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44 votes
Accepted

Why is it called dynamic range?

Because "dynamic range" does not refer to a range that is dynamic, but rather to a range of dynamics. For example: range of luminosities or reflectances in photography, or a range of ...
Kahovius's user avatar
  • 2,758
30 votes

Lighting up a subject during sunset without a flash?

That's a nice silhouette! You're running into the same problem that anyone runs into when photographing a very backlit subject: a lot of light is coming from the background and creating a drastic ...
OnBreak.'s user avatar
  • 20.5k
20 votes
Accepted

Why don't cameras record light data throughout the entire shutter?

It's been done in X-rays. The TimePix is a 256x256 detector. It has three operating modes: the usual "total energy in this pixel since we started integrating"; Time-over-Threshold (TOT): the ...
Eric Towers's user avatar
20 votes
Accepted

What are physical causes of clipping?

What exactly limits modern digital camera sensors in capturing light intensity beyond certain point? In terms of the physical properties of the sensor itself: The number of photon strikes and the ...
Michael C's user avatar
  • 175k
19 votes

Why don't cameras record light data throughout the entire shutter?

You are missing some obvious problems with this idea. You want to "continously" capture the light data, but that's already being done. Apparently you mean to have a series of images available after ...
Olin Lathrop's user avatar
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18 votes
Accepted

Sunny day in the shade - how to deal with white balance and exposure settings?

This is the situation when you use fill-flash. Contrary to common belief, flash is NOT to be used in darkness. In darkness flash lights up the foreground and leaves background pitch black. Flash is ...
Agent_L's user avatar
  • 2,090
16 votes
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How can I maintain brightness in a landscape without overexposing the sky?

How can I make my shots look like this one? I added an emphasis to the question you asked, which is pretty much the answer: You make an image like that. There's no way your camera will produce an ...
null's user avatar
  • 8,514
14 votes

If, brightness → dynamic range... white balance → what?

The phenomenon you describe is called color constancy, and it is enabled partially by the human vision system's chromatic adaptation and partially by something I will describe using the scientific ...
mattdm's user avatar
  • 143k
13 votes
Accepted

Why don't cameras show an "accurate" histogram?

Why don't cameras show a histogram based on the RAW data rather than on the JPG preview? My notion is this: Because it would not be useful, because raw images don't yet have white balance in them, ...
WayneF's user avatar
  • 12.9k
12 votes

Why don't cameras record light data throughout the entire shutter?

You suggest "Or every time a photon hits a pixel on the sensor give it a timestamp" — this would be a huge amount of data. A quick search suggests that each pixel — or sensel — in a digital camera ...
mattdm's user avatar
  • 143k
12 votes

Lighting up a subject during sunset without a flash?

Changing the exposure compensation or using manual exposure can brighten your subject, but it will also make the sky brighter. Too bright to see the effect of the sunset. You can't change the laws ...
Mike Sowsun's user avatar
  • 12.3k
10 votes

When is it better to use HDR rather than just pulling extremes from a RAW file?

It is appropriate in situations where you can't capture the dynamic range in one shot and in situations where lifting the shadows would reveal too much noise. Certain landscape shots and night time ...
MirekE's user avatar
  • 5,205
10 votes

When is it better to use HDR rather than just pulling extremes from a RAW file?

The short answer is: When the dynamic range of the scene exceeds the dynamic range you can capture in one shot with raw. A somewhat longer answer is that is that there are complicating factors, for ...
Linwood's user avatar
  • 2,363
10 votes
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Why are my sunsets not turning out well?

There is no problem with this photograph, there is a 'problem' with the scene. There is a lot of dust in the air. The dust in the air scatters light around, therefore you 'lose' light from the ...
Orbit's user avatar
  • 1,530
10 votes
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Why is the earth not overexposed in this star photo from the ISS?

Assuming this is a single exposure, it must have been taken on the night side of the Earth, and the impression of daylight can be caused by the moon, like in those night time photos. Taking this ISS ...
szulat's user avatar
  • 5,059
9 votes

Why don't digital cameras have better dynamic ranges?

ISO usually is analog amplification, not digital. It is a multiplication factor applied to all sensor data equally. Imagine you shoot a photo at ISO 100. You get values from 1 to 150. Fine, lets up ...
ths's user avatar
  • 7,171
8 votes
Accepted

Which print medium has the highest dynamic range?

It is really complicated because you need to compare brands and systems with the same reference image. This will be an answer just based on my little experience. Paper In general terms the paper must ...
Rafael's user avatar
  • 24.9k
8 votes

Why don't cameras record light data throughout the entire shutter?

What you're asking for, continuous light sampling, might be theoretically possible but practically too expensive. It might be possible to approximate it with a very high sampling rate. This could be ...
dreamcatcher's user avatar
8 votes

Why are my sunsets not turning out well?

As others have pointed out, a large part of the difference between the two is the air quality at the time the image was captured. One was taken in what appears to be fairly clear, dry air. The other ...
Michael C's user avatar
  • 175k
7 votes

How can I maintain brightness in a landscape without overexposing the sky?

I absolutely agree with null's suggestions to a) pick more interesting scenery and b) pick more interesting weather. You may also want to look at neutral density filters and at HDR techniques to help ...
mattdm's user avatar
  • 143k
7 votes

Sunny day in the shade - how to deal with white balance and exposure settings?

Shoot in RAW at the lowest ISO. Expose for the sunlit portion of the picture. In your RAW software adjust the shadows to show some details. The bench is lit by direct sun and the shaded areas are ...
Alan P's user avatar
  • 261
7 votes

Sunny day in the shade - how to deal with white balance and exposure settings?

You are now experiencing the power of nature and the construction of human eye :-). Technically the CMOS sensors are catching like 6-7 EV brightnes/darkness span (dynamic range) at one time (for the ...
Seweryn Habdank-Wojewódzki's user avatar
7 votes

Sunny day in the shade - how to deal with white balance and exposure settings?

I really like several of the other answers here — particularly, use of fill-flash to balance the scene as the top technical measure, and accept the camera as an important alternate way of thinking. I ...
mattdm's user avatar
  • 143k
6 votes

How to take a tunnel photo with a model inside the tunnel?

Sounds like you want the outside of the tunnel to be properly exposed and not blown out. Meter for that and with your camera set to full manual mode use the settings suggested by the light meter. Take ...
Alaska Man's user avatar
  • 3,618
6 votes
Accepted

Can the same sensor have different dynamic range and color depth in different camera makes?

DxO are not specifically inaccurate, but like any lab testing the methodology is important to the interpretation of results. The result as seen in files (used to obtain measurements) is a result of ...
James Snell's user avatar
  • 9,709
6 votes

Does A RAW file exist containing the full dynamic range of a natural scene with a ratio of 100,000:1?

To achieve 100,000:1 dynamic range the raw file would need to store 17 or more bits per pixel, since 2^16 =65536. Which is by no means normal but could be done with CG data.
TopCat's user avatar
  • 221
6 votes

16-bit wysiwyg image? Not RAW

You get the desired result if you convert you raw file to tiff. If you don't like "separate interpretation by every program" as you said in one of your comments, use manufacturers convertor - that ...
MirekE's user avatar
  • 5,205
6 votes

How to take a tunnel photo with a model inside the tunnel?

(Some people might hang me for this but) You could take two shots and photoshop/merge them together afterwards. To do this you would have to take two shots from the exact same spot, maybe use a ...
bweber's user avatar
  • 343
6 votes
Accepted

Dynamic Range and ISO capabilities - Canon / Nikon

Regarding dynamic range and high ISO For the specific application you're inquiring about small differences in overall dynamic range really doesn't make that much of a difference. Most of the scene is ...
Michael C's user avatar
  • 175k

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