iPhone 6 Noise Reduction too Strong?

SCMedic

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 8, 2008
186
41
Seems my wife noticed her pictures look "smeared or like watercolor" out of her iPhone 6 plus. She mentioned it to me tonight and I had just read a similar post here.

I, personally, am see tack sharp images without the smearing. Possible it's a sensor issue and not software? If it's software, hopefully Apple tunes it up. Most reviews on the camera from major tech blogs rant and rave about how sharp and beautiful it is. Is this a few isolated cases?
 

lienhart

macrumors 6502
Jun 24, 2013
322
116
I noticed my camera is a little off as well... It seems grainy at times. It could be the lighting but I don't know what to do :(
 

SCMedic

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 8, 2008
186
41
I noticed my camera is a little off as well... It seems grainy at times. It could be the lighting but I don't know what to do :(
I'm guessing since it's how the software is processing the image, Apple can "turn it down" a bit, and make the images sharper. I think it's how they're getting less noise in the low light stuff, but it looks crappy.
 

SCMedic

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 8, 2008
186
41
ISO 125 at 1/8th second shutter speed via my 6+

Regular and then 100% crop. See how bad the details are smudged. I think my 5s had more noise in low light but was overall sharper. Anecdotal of course, as I didn't compare the two side by side. Anyone else have any thoughts?
 

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munkydust

macrumors member
May 2, 2010
99
1
The outdoor pictures have looked good to me but the indoor ones are not what I thought they would be. The reviews had me thinking they were going to look much better than what I am experiencing.
 

munkydust

macrumors member
May 2, 2010
99
1
ISO 125 at 1/8th second shutter speed via my 6+

Regular and then 100% crop. See how bad the details are smudged. I think my 5s had more noise in low light but was overall sharper. Anecdotal of course, as I didn't compare the two side by side. Anyone else have any thoughts?
Thanks for posting that. That is similar to what I am seeing indoors.
 

SCMedic

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 8, 2008
186
41
Thanks for posting that. That is similar to what I am seeing indoors.
Bright light this thing is amazing. No question.

It looks like they tried to reduce the low light noise so much that they're losing detail. I'll take a little noise over this.
 

munkydust

macrumors member
May 2, 2010
99
1
Bright light this thing is amazing. No question.

It looks like they tried to reduce the low light noise so much that they're losing detail. I'll take a little noise over this.
Yeah, I was thinking maybe something was wrong with my phone or I was doing something wrong (like a setting needed changed) based on the reviews that have highlighted the great indoors performance.

Still don't understand why there is such a gulf between our results and those of the reviewers?
 

hunkim

macrumors newbie
Oct 1, 2014
26
0
I don't think they're reviewing w/ close enough scrutiny honestly... hopefully this is an issue they can address in future software updates.

Yeah, I was thinking maybe something was wrong with my phone or I was doing something wrong (like a setting needed changed) based on the reviews that have highlighted the great indoors performance.

Still don't understand why there is such a gulf between our results and those of the reviewers?
 

pjstrrns

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2014
32
0
Yeah, I was thinking maybe something was wrong with my phone or I was doing something wrong (like a setting needed changed) based on the reviews that have highlighted the great indoors performance.

Still don't understand why there is such a gulf between our results and those of the reviewers?
I have been asking the same question. Why the difference in reviews? It makes me feel like there might be a bug with the processing or auto focus because it seems to effect some more than others.

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/1790221/
 

hunkim

macrumors newbie
Oct 1, 2014
26
0
Apple's not reading these forums, so I think all of us need to definitely provide feedback to them that NR/Sharpening is way too strong on:

https://www.apple.com/feedback/iphone.html

I'm going to feedback at least once a week asking them for an update. ;)

I have been asking the same question. Why the difference in reviews? It makes me feel like there might be a bug with the processing or auto focus because it seems to effect some more than others.

https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/1790221/
 

iosuser

macrumors 6502a
Mar 12, 2012
965
703
I noticed the very heavy smearing after taking the very first picture with my iPhone 6. After reviewing my past photos from iPhone 4 on, it looks like the smearing is the heaviest on the iPhone 6. Now I know pixel-peeping is unhealthy, but this smearing can be seen at about 50% magnification. The heavy jpeg compression is not helping either. Most photos are less than 2MB each.
 

VSMacOne

macrumors 601
Oct 18, 2008
4,745
1,446
Noticing the same here. I wonder how this is going to impact people who want to print large photos?
 

aliensporebomb

macrumors 68000
Jun 19, 2005
1,844
223
Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth
Ah!

I've seen this in very low light situations. Last friday I took a picture of our party at an outdoor restaurant near dusk before they turned the lights on and it's almost like someone used a watercolor effect on the image. Very strange.

Some have reported better results using Cortex Camera - your mileage may vary.
 

vgamedude

macrumors 6502a
Dec 10, 2013
798
6
ISO 125 at 1/8th second shutter speed via my 6+

Regular and then 100% crop. See how bad the details are smudged. I think my 5s had more noise in low light but was overall sharper. Anecdotal of course, as I didn't compare the two side by side. Anyone else have any thoughts?
That looks terrible, look around the kids right hand how noisy and blurry that is!

YUCK:mad:
 

studio¹³¹

macrumors 6502
Jul 31, 2009
343
182
Bright light this thing is amazing. No question.

It looks like they tried to reduce the low light noise so much that they're losing detail. I'll take a little noise over this.
I'm getting smudgy results in even the brightest conditions (iPhone 6).
 

BuffordT

macrumors regular
Oct 6, 2014
116
0
It's not just the noise reduction, the jpg compression is very aggressive. The same picture taken with an iPhone 5, 8.02 IOS is roughly 50% larger in file size and looks better.

----------

Noticing the same here. I wonder how this is going to impact people who want to print large photos?
Horribly. You won't be able to print anything other than a 5x7 without looking horrible.

----------

I've seen this in very low light situations. Last friday I took a picture of our party at an outdoor restaurant near dusk before they turned the lights on and it's almost like someone used a watercolor effect on the image. Very strange.

Some have reported better results using Cortex Camera - your mileage may vary.
Cortex cam app is much better, but not a perfect alternative to the stock app. It uses longer exposure times so anything other than a still subject won't look good at all.
 

iPhone7ate9

macrumors 6502a
Jun 22, 2014
720
0
Yes. The reason is because Apple is raising the shadow levels (otherwise they'd be black) as to create better dynamic range. That causes noise thus more noise reduction.
 

thebrowncoat

macrumors newbie
Oct 25, 2012
9
0
I've noticed similar problems, particularly with the crop and zoom. Used to be I could fire off pictures indoors, then crop and zoom and get relatively sharp, somewhat noisy pics.

Now, I get really soft focus, less noisy pics - that look noticeably worse.

It's a really disappointing change.
 

ToddH

macrumors 65816
Jul 5, 2010
1,230
1,185
Central Tx
There is an app called camera + and it now has an option to shoot uncompressed tiff images and each exposure is 11 MB thereabouts each. Get it here: Camera+ by tap tap tap
https://appsto.re/us/X-LPt.i

Maybe there's some apps out there that will run noise reduction to make it look better using a higher megabyte file or uncompressed tiff image...I have had very good luck with cortex camera but the object that you're shooting has to be sitting still and it is not to be used on moving objects. That's the only negative side about it. Another cool app for keeping your phone stable is average camera pro. With average camera pro, you can tell your camera to shoot 8 to 128 photos that are stacked on top of each other to get rid of noise. I have come away with digital SLR quality images using this app. Again, you have to set your phone down and don't touch it while it's taking the photos so they will be properly aligned.
Average Camera Pro by Dominik Seibold
https://appsto.re/us/rCtXy.i
 

Jimmy James

macrumors 603
Oct 26, 2008
5,127
3,514
Magicland
I also see what appears to be over aggressive noise reduction for indoor shots. The jpg compression may also account for the loss of detail.
 
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