Nikon D5100 - Part 5 - "In the field" - Sharpening in Photoshop.

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom
Nikon D5100 18-55mm Zoom ISO 100 Multi-image panoramic stitch

If nothing else comes from my buying the D5100, it has made me come up with a new set of parameters for Adobe Camera Raw conversion in Photoshop, that improves the sharpness of files from cameras with quite strong anti-aliasing filters. 

I came back with a set of images yesterday, taken on the D5100, that I liked in terms of colour, but was somewhat frustrated by in terms of sharpness. Like most of the images I have taken so far with the camera, I was somewhat concerned by the lack of "bite" in them. I spent a long time trying to see if I could come up with something that improved this without increasing the luminance noise. For those that are interested I came up with this.


This does improve things somewhat, and while I'm sure I'll be tweaking in the coming days, it does give a better result. There's also a couple of other things I'm working on in Photoshop but overall I'm pleased with these results.

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

I really do like the "punchy" colour from this camera. Nikon DSLR's often produce quite "flat" colour and need some Photoshop work to get them looking good, but the D5100 produces good saturated colour straight off.  Even if the light is not great.

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

As I've said often enough, selling my images via websites means that they have to have impact and get noticed as thumbnails. Good strong colour is an element in this.
Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

Nikon D5100 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 zoom

While I was out shooting yesterday, it occurred to me that if I was using this same camera 4-5 years ago, it would have been total state-of-the-art. Now its just an "entry-level" camera. Nikon still only have one camera, the D3X, that has a larger sensor, and the articulated screen gives it an edge for me over the D7000, while still retaining that cameras image quality and high ISO performance. 

This Sony Exmor sensor that is now in two Sony, two Nikon and one Pentax DSLR's is a real beauty. I've used it so far in the Sony A55 and Pentax K-5, and it hasn't disappointed in either of those cameras. I certainly prefer it to the 18MP sensor Canon are using in their current APS-C cameras. I'm going to be doing some high ISO tests in the near future, but for the bulk of my work which is at low ISO's I am very pleased with the sensors performance. Particularly now, since I've worked out how to get clean, sharp results from the Nikon.