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Wide Gamut Colorspace Reduces Noise, Avoids Posterization

The choice of color space can have a large impact on noise (which makes most of the “objective tests” of digital camera noise misleading at best to anyone looking for real image quality).

More noise, but possibly posterization

At best, the effect of using a narrow-gamut color space such as sRGB or AdobeRGB simply means more noise in one color channel. But in some cases it means posterization of image detail, with an accompanying color shift and destruction of detail.

Black and white conversion

More noise in one channel might not matter for an RGB image very much, but it matters a great deal if one wants to extract a black and white image from a particular channel, or mix channels together (a noisy or posterized channel will pollute the result). For black and white conversion, the individual channels offer a useful hunting ground, but sRGB is generally so awful that it often is best avoided.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

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