This article shares the results of an Olympus OM-D E-M1X ISO invariance test. My base image for this test was a tripod assisted photograph captured at ISO-6400. I then took successive images at ISO-3200, ISO-1600, ISO-800, ISO-400 and ISO-200 while shooting in Manual mode.
My skill set in post processing doing this level of recovery is very limited, so I apologize to readers in advance. I’m sure that someone more experienced with these types of adjustments would have done a far better job than I was able to do.
To set a benchmark for this E-M1X ISO invariance test, let’s have a look at all of the corresponding jpegs.
Now let’s have a look at these same images after the corresponding RAW files were adjusted in post. I used my standard post processing approach with DxO PhotoLab 2, CS6 and the Nik Collection.
Our last comparison in this article is to look at each out-of-camera jpeg and its corresponding RAW image after it was adjusted in post.
While I would seldom create a dark image purposely, other than for creative effect, it is reassuring to know that the RAW files from the Olympus OM-D E-M1X respond well in post.
I recently had a practical example of the benefit of this when capturing some family photographs. Due to lighting conditions some of my photographs were underexposed by 1-2 stops even when shooting at ISO-6400. Not expecting particularly good results, I lightened these family images in post. The quality of the finished images was a very pleasant surprise. They were absolutely useable and I would be comfortable printing reasonable sized enlargements from them.
Some people put a high emphasis on sensor size when choosing a camera and assume the worst about small sensor cameras like M4/3. Factors like IBIS performance, Handheld Hi Res mode (HHHR) and the degree of ISO invariance can impact how a camera like the Olympus OM-D E-M1X performs in lower light conditions.
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Some images are out of camera jpegs while others were produced from RAW files using my standard process.
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