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Sony Alpha NEX 6 Ken McMahon, Jan 2013
 
 

Sony NEX-6 Multi Frame Noise Reduction

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  Sony Alpha NEX-6 results
1 Sony NEX-6 Quality JPEG
2 Sony NEX-6 Quality RAW
3 Sony NEX-6 Noise JPEG
4 Sony NEX-6 Noise RAW
5 Sony NEX-6 Multi Frame NR
6 Sony NEX-6 Sample images

One of the eight apps currently available for the NEX-6 is Multi Frame Noise reduction. Multi Frame NR was introduced on the SLT-A33 and is also available on the RX100, but hasn't previously been available on NEX models, so the option of adding it as an app for just a few dollars is a very worthwhile investment for those who frequently shoot in low light.

Multi Frame Noise Reduction, fires-off six frames in quick succession and stacks them into a single image in an attempt to lower noise levels. The big difference between MFNR and Hand-held Twilight mode is the former can be applied at any sensitivity up to and including the 25,600 ISO setting and in any of the PASM modes.

On this page I've put it to the test, comparing it against the normal single-frame ISO settings.


The image above was taken with the Sony Alpha NEX-6 with the 16-50mm f3.5-5.6 power zoom.. The sensitivity was manually set to 100 ISO and the NEX-6 set to Aperture priority exposure mode with the aperture set to f4. The metering selected an exposure that would have resulted in underexposure of the church interior, so to achieve a better result I applied 1.3EV exposure compensation, resulting in a shutter speed of one second. The Multi Frame NR shots were also shot in Aperture Priority mode at f4 with the same level of exposure compensation.

In practice, the Multi Frame Noise Reduction app works in much the same way as on models where it is a 'core' feature. The main difference is that on models like the RX100 it's selected from the ISO sensitivity menu, on the NEX-6 you select it from the app menu and from thereon in any other settings, like exposure compensation are applied from menu selections within the app, rather than in the usual way. One exception to this is that you can still use the right button on the rear control wheel to change the ISO sensitivity.

Looking at the crops, the results from the app are very simlarly to what we've seen from Multi Frame noise reduction on other models. At the lower ISO levels there's really no advantage and all that's achieved is a slight softening of the detail, but from around 800 ISO up, there's a marked reduction in noise levels in the MFNR crops compared to the single-frame crops.

The maximum impact is achieved at the 1600 to 6400 ISO settings, where the softening is preferable to the increased noise at those sensitivities, but MFNR continues to produce improvements right the way up to the maximum 25600 ISO setting. Now head over to my Sony NEX-6 sample images to see some more real-life shots in a variety of conditions, or head straight for my Verdict.


Sony NEX-6 single frames
 
Sony NEX-6 Multi Frame Noise Reduction
100 ISO
100 ISO
200 ISO
200 ISO
400 ISO
400 ISO
800 ISO
800 ISO
     
1600 ISO
1600 ISO
     
3200 ISO
3200 ISO
     
6400 ISO
6400 ISO
     
12800 ISO
12800 ISO
     
25600 ISO
25600 ISO
     


Sony Alpha NEX-6
results : Quality / RAW quality / Noise / RAW Noise


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