Reducing Noise with ACR (and Lightroom)

It’s been commented  on several reviews that the G9 is a little noisy due to having so many pixels on a small sensor (less and bigger is better for cutting noise) but its is not as bad as every one makes out, a lot of reviews seem to want the ultimate perfect camera and now! They are getting frustrated at the slow speed of technology and overtly nit picking because the camera manufactures put in features that in some ways is a step backwards.

To reduce noise the exposure is an important aspect and is best moving the exposure to the right (on the histogram) and so it is not touching the Left hand edge. Noise is caused by light hitting the pixel but not being enough to measure a bit like putting a bucket out to catch rain, it may be wet inside from a light shower but can be hard to measure so deliberately adding more exposure is like adding a measured amount of rain so the bucket (pixel) has something to measure

For the G9 at ISO 800, Thomas Niemann (of PTLens fame) has suggested the following settings in ACR Details page: (ACR = Adobe Camera Raw as found in Photoshop CS/Elements and Lightroom)

Sharpening
amount=60
radius = 0.8
detail = 30
masking = 0

Clarity -25

Noise reduction
luminance = 80
colour = 100

Source: Luminous Landscape forums

These settings can be saved as a preset in ACR and Adobe Lightroom

There is also Neat Image, Noise Ninja and Noisewear that are specific noise reduction programs and are worth checking out, the pro versions also work with RAW files and Noisewear do a limited but free community edition

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6 thoughts on “Reducing Noise with ACR (and Lightroom)

  1. That explanation of cause of noise in digital cameras is really helpful… thanks.

    Also, I’ve used Neat Image for noise reduction on quite a few photos and its really good… particularly for a relative beginner.

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