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Poor quality still images. Is this Normal?
2381 12 2015-12-21
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Iron Oak
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United States
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I am a professional photographer and recently had a chance to try out a Phantom 3 Pro. I was amazed out how easy these were to operate and I really enjoyed the well thought out interface. I enjoyed it so much that I am now considering one for myself or possible the Inspire 1.

My question is this. The above photo is really poor quality. The settings were completely fine for proper exposure but there is a lot of ghosting, moire and chromatic aberration in the image. Especially the trees. I have tried to correct this as much as possible in post but it seems unexceptable.
It was still while I took the photo. (meaning not moving while in flight). The shutter was high enough where it should not of caused a motion blur effect. I have also experienced this in other photos taked with this drone on seperate days.

I want to know if this is the norm for the Phantom 3 Pro or if there is possible something wrong with the camera on this particular drone?

I am use to full frame cameras and I understand this wont be the same quality but I at the very least expect the same as a GoPro or my iphone.

Eagerly awaiting your feedback.



2015-12-21
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DJI-Amy
DJI team

Hong Kong
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Hi, what is your camera setting? Could you please upload the original files in the micro SD card?
2015-12-21
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Geebax
Captain
Australia
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The sensor in the P3 Pro camera is the same as used in the GoPro H4, however in comparative tests, the H4 had an edge over the P3. There have been issues with cameras giving poor performance as delivered, so I would suggest you try out another one before making a decision. However, in defence of the P3 Pro, if you want the best results, you should have available a selection of ND filters and also an IR cut filter.
2015-12-22
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Iron Oak
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United States
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DJI-Amy Posted at 2015-12-22 02:53
Hi, what is your camera setting? Could you please upload the original files in the micro SD card?

The original file is a DNG (raw). Too big to upload here and Flickr won't accept it.

The settings were ISO 200, 1/1000th sec at f2.8 exposing for the highlights.
2015-12-22
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Iron Oak
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United States
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Geebax Posted at 2015-12-22 03:32
The sensor in the P3 Pro camera is the same as used in the GoPro H4, however in comparative tests, t ...

While I understand what you're saying about performance and the filters, it isn't as critical for stills as it is for video. As with video, you are using the filter to help stop down the exposure to have it more in line with the Frame rate choice. I should really only need a ND filter for a bright sunny day. Otherwise I will lose too much in the shadows
2015-12-22
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KaosImagery
lvl.4
Flight distance : 495463 ft
United States
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Iron Oak, your image is similar to my results in similar lighting.

Before I purchased the P3P, I was used to my Canon 5D Mark III and 7D Mark II images.  The small sensor is nothing like the big dslr.

I find that the P3P raw files don't have the dynamic range headroom of the Canons and not even as good as my iPhone 6.

That said, I have some good images and see many good images posted from the same product.  I think the small sensor tends to like alot of light, low / flat light images don't come back in post like the bigger sensors.  Lately I've been shooting 5 bracketed frames (as long as you can keep the shutter speed up and it's not very windy) and blending them in Lightroom to get a little more dynamic range.  Clarity and contrast boosts seem to help more than sharpening.  The dehaze slider can be beneficial too.

As a photographer, I wish the camera was better, but for an all in one flying camera package, it's a pretty good start.  Sharing them online I keep them to 1200px on the long side or less, depending on how they look.  I have printed many up to 8x10 that look decent.

Here are a few of my shots:

https://flic.kr/p/xYsaE8

https://flic.kr/p/zjwDBa

https://flic.kr/p/ARHwy6

https://flic.kr/p/As6vys
2015-12-22
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Geebax
Captain
Australia
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Iron Oak Posted at 2015-12-22 23:18
While I understand what you're saying about performance and the filters, it isn't as critical for  ...

Yes, you are quite right about the ND on bright sunny days, but where I live, that is most of the time.
2015-12-22
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DJI-Amy
DJI team

Hong Kong
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Iron Oak Posted at 2015-12-22 20:05
The original file is a DNG (raw). Too big to upload here and Flickr won't accept it.

The setting ...

Then please try to upload it to MEGA or Dropbox:
2015-12-22
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Sailor P3
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Canada
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Hi Iron oak,

I am also a "serious" amateur photographer. I just returned from a trip to Tanzania in October. My wife and I were on a Safari and we each took about 3500 pictures with a Canon 5D Mark III, with 70-200 f 2.8, and fixed 300 f 5.6 (and my wife with my previous 60D body).

I really enjoy the P3P (which I own since last June, and no, I didn't take it with me on that trip in Africa).

As far as quality is concerned, honestly, we just can't compare the P3P with the full frame 5D Mark III with that kind of glass.

I believe we can get very decent results with the P3P for posting on the Web or to print up to 5 X 7.

But realistically, don't expect that small camera and fixed lens to ever compare with almost professional equipemnt for stills.

Let's just make the best of what I think is an amazing piece of equipment.

Enjoy and have fun!
2015-12-22
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Westside Osprey
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Flight distance : 95915 ft
United States
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Iron Oak Posted at 2015-12-22 07:05
The original file is a DNG (raw). Too big to upload here and Flickr won't accept it.

The setting ...

I saw the original DNG, Sam emailed it to me.

Here is a jpg w/o adjusting:


It was exposed correctly for the Sky but the ground was very under exposed. Pushing up the left side will always yield terrible noise in a cheap camera. And this is a very cheap cam DR is probably about 6-7 stops.

And the lens is also very cheap and probably has large variations from one to another, even the cheap UV filters probably introduce problems. You can't compare these photos to a camera like a 5DmkII/III with a good lens. If you need really clean photos get a Zenmuse for a 5DkII on  S900 or check out the new 5XR on the Inspire.

What I would have done if I needed the best results from the P3P, is either shot 5-6 stills changing the exposure and then done a HDR composite, this would give very nice results even with cheap cams. Or you could have waited for the Sun to hit all of the Race Track, that would have been very nice, especially if the surrounding area was in the shade. With HDR you could manipulate this in post to get that look.

I am actually very impressed by this incredible cheap P3P, but it is really not a Pro Photography setup. However with some clever manipulation or planning/luck with the lighting you can get fantastic results. Panoramic stitching works very well as well.

I have some video I shot with Sam's P3P and it is about the same as I get from mine, so I do not think she has a faulty unit.
Also iso 100 is much cleaner than 200.

Merry Xmas, maybe we will meet some day up here and compare notes.

Olof
2015-12-23
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wmw1490
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United States
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Sailor P3 Posted at 2015-12-22 22:56
Hi Iron oak,

I am also a "serious" amateur photographer. I just returned from a trip to Tanzania in ...

Agree completely....no fair comparison with a great digital camera combo.  Much better than prior generations, but still a way to go for the technology to catch up with something that can be carried as a reasonable camera payload.  It's all about compromises when designing and fitting.  
2015-12-23
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mrginhop
lvl.2

United States
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wmw1490 Posted at 2015-12-23 10:09
Agree completely....no fair comparison with a great digital camera combo.  Much better than prior  ...

I just recently got the P3A (just 10 flights so far) & have just started taking serious photos. See below. I am also a very serious photographer. I shoot Nikon (D4, D810).
Here are my earlier observations re. image quality:1) Shooting above ISO 800 generates incredible noise. Forget 1600 ISO. Not correctable with LR/Photoshop noise (e.g. NIK) plugins it appears.
2) Best to be on the right (highlight) side of the histogram.

So some questions for the P3 still photo vets:

1)Does HDR really work on this machine? I tested it out on the ground. When I click it I only hear one shutter release so I'm assuming this is doing a single image HDR & processing it as HDR? Will the HDR image stay RAW for LR processing?
2)What's the slowest shutter speed you've been able to use without noticeable camera shake?. I realize wind plays a big role here so the answer is probably going to be "depends upon how still conditions are"... So I guess the question should be with little or no wind how low can I drop the shutter speed?

My challenge: shoot low light stuff (pre- or post sun rise/set) & keep the ISO at or under 800.

Thanks for your observations/advice!


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2016-1-10
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nigelw
First Officer
Flight distance : 518084 ft
United Kingdom
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mrginhop Posted at 2016-1-10 18:17
I just recently got the P3A (just 10 flights so far) & have just started taking serious photos. See ...

See my test here for shutter speed  http://forum.dji.com/thread-39468-1-1.html

Still more testing to do.
2016-1-10
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