Tuesday, July 14, 2009

HDR with Photomatix and LUMIX LZ8 compact camera

A while ago, I posted a short explanation on what is HDR? I did not create my own HDR.  However, having this below USD100 Panasonic Lumix LZ8 compact camera, it has this feature that allows it to automatically shoot the same image with three different exposure compensation.  I believe many compact cameras also have this feature these days.  This actually makes sense for a HDR experiment with images from a compact cameras.

Using the feature, which can be found by setting it to “A/S/M” mode on the top dial (Manual mode) and then pressing the exposure compensation button as shown below (circled in red).


You will be in the auto bracket setting mode and you can specify the 3 exposure settings using the right and left buttons.  I took the following pictures using –1/ 0 / +1 settings (maximum). (Note that the camera will take in the following order 0, –1 and +1).

P1000180 This is the –1 exposure compensation where the objects outside the window is exposed correctly whilse the bottle in-doors is under-exposed.


This is the default exposure where neither the in-doors nor the out-doors are expose correctly and it’s in between.

P1000182 In the picture above, the label on the bottle can be seen but the out-doors are over-exposed.  None of the images above would be deemed as properly exposed if you want the whole image.

High Dynamic Range (HDR) helps to give more dynamic range in your images, and following the example found on hdrsoft’s website, I used their trial software to test it out. (This is not the freeware version but a trial version of their software).

It is a simple to use software and the result is as below.  Note that since this is a trial software, it has photomatix watermark on it.

test(You can download the 800 x 600 image above by clicking on it).

As you can see, it combines the 3 images taken and the bottle’s label and the outdoors are exposed appropriately.


Chee Siang said...

How's the noise level?

Ian Tan said...

Reasonable, note that the window actually has a insect netting over it, hence the "noise" around that area.

Chee Siang said...

Hm..... that day I tried to make an HDR from a single RAW file. Very noise leh... lol

kuanhoong said...

hmm getting better in HDR