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Panasonic S1R Multi-Shot High-Res Mode: Evaluating How Diffraction Affects Captured Detail and Micro Contrast

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For years I’ve written about the damaging effects of diffraction versus high-resolution imaging but the Multi-Shot High-Res mode of the Panasonic S1R offers an interesting opportunity to verify the limits that I have observed for 42/45/50 megapixel full frame cameras shot at native resolution, which are as follows:

  • f/6.3 is the smallest aperture at which diffraction can be ignored.
  • f/8 shows subtle but consistent dulling versus f/5.6.
  • f/11 and f/13 invariably cause obvious dulling that damages macro and micro contrast, but the negative effects can be partially offset with diffraction mitigating sharpening.
  • f/16 is so marginal as to be a very poor choice with virtually all image, while f/22 is an unmitigated disaster showing major damage to macro and micro contrast and loss of resolving power.

How about the limits for Multi-Shot High-Res Mode which in effect uses pixels 1/4 the size (1/2 linearly)?

This page looks at the the limits imposed by diffraction for Multi-Shot High-Res mode as well as standard resolution mode. In diglloyd L-Mount Mirrorless,

Panasonic S1R: Panasonic S1R: Diffraction Limits for Multi-Shot High-Res Mode

Along with the Panasonic S1R HighRes mode workflow page, this page is essential reading for anyone using Panasonic S1R Multi-Shot High-Res Mode.

Same image, different apertures = major quality loss from diffraction
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