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Stop The Waxing!


Jano
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madmaxmedia, agreed.... I had the X-Pro1 and the original X100 and they were great.  The appearance of the second generation X Trans sensor saw the arrival of the wax effect. 

 

Fuji have never commented on the wax effect, despite numerous complaints since the X Trans II sensor came out, so it is possible that they screwed up on the design and perhaps it cannot be corrected. 

 

Perhaps the problem is caused by the sensor design, and not by the firmware. 

 

As Fuji have refused to comment or correct in all this time, it is possible that the sensor design is flawed.  I guess it may be fixed with the new sensor that is rumoured to feature in the yet-to-be-announced X-Pro2 and X-T2.

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madmaxmedia, agreed.... I had the X-Pro1 and the original X100 and they were great.  The appearance of the second generation X Trans sensor saw the arrival of the wax effect. 

 

Fuji have never commented on the wax effect, despite numerous complaints since the X Trans II sensor came out, so it is possible that they screwed up on the design and perhaps it cannot be corrected. 

 

Perhaps the problem is caused by the sensor design, and not by the firmware. 

 

As Fuji have refused to comment or correct in all this time, it is possible that the sensor design is flawed.  I guess it may be fixed with the new sensor that is rumoured to feature in the yet-to-be-announced X-Pro2 and X-T2.

 

Hi Paul, I think it has to be a JPEG engine issue only, if the workaround of shoot RAW at -2 EXP COMP, and then push-processing 2 stops in-camera eliminates the problem completely.

 

What the workaround does is basically apply Fuji ISO 1600 NR, to ISO 6400 images. And the resultant JPEG's looks absolutely fine. It's possible that they might have incrementally more noise than first-gen cameras due to different sensor, but even if so, that's not what people are complaining about- Fuji JPEG high-ISO noise looks incredibly organic- very fine with little blotchiness or harsh digital-looking artifacts, or chroma noise.

 

Does the X-A1 or X-M1 have first or second gen XTrans sensor? Because they also have the waxy skin effect.

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Hi Madmaxmedia,

 

I believe the X-A1 and X-M1, all the later Fujis, have the second generation sensor.

 

So far, despite many complaints in many Forums, Fuji has declined to comment, and declined to fix the issue.  My guess is that they can't, or don't know how to, which is why they are working on yet another sensor.

 

I think the extremely blotchy noise, and even solarisation, is part of the problem.... I am fairly certain it's caused by the sensor, and cannot be fixed with firmware.

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Does the X-A1 or X-M1 have first or second gen XTrans sensor? Because they also have the waxy skin effect.

 

Waxing hasn't anything to do with the sensor.

 

It's about EXR I vs. EXR II. It's probably hard-wired in the processing engine, just like JPEG compression (can't changed by firmware, wither).

 

Let's see what EXR III has in store.

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Thanks for that clarification Flysurfer, I had an idea it might not be fixable, but thought it was the sensor, not the processor. 

 

No point, then, continuing to ask Fuji to fix it, if it can't be fixed by firmware.

 

We will just have to upgrade our cameras when the new ones come out and hope, as you say, that the EXR III might have a pleasant surprise.

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Fuji and their (probably mostly Asian and middle-eastern) target audience consider the waxing an improvement and major feature.

That is repeatedly said but then why doesn't Fuji apply it at lower ISOs? Haven't read a good explanation of that so to me it sounds a lot like an excuse...

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It's about EXR I vs. EXR II. It's probably hard-wired in the processing engine, just like JPEG compression (can't changed by firmware, wither).

Rico, you know that an ISO 1600 RAW is exactly the same as ISO 6400 RAW. And as I've shown (got that tip from you!) the camera can push ISO 1600 two stops without waxing. So saying this couldn't be resolved through FW is obviously wrong.

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Rico, you know that an ISO 1600 RAW is exactly the same as ISO 6400 RAW. And as I've shown (got that tip from you!) the camera can push ISO 1600 two stops without waxing. So saying this couldn't be resolved through FW is obviously wrong.

 

Fuji won't change their JPEG engine, they never do, and much of this processing is hardware based, as it has to be really fast. So this is something that might be different with EXR III, but wo knows? I don't. Hope dies last.

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@Phil

 

If you need iSO 12800 RAW just set ISO to 6400, underexpose by one stop and push accordingly in the processing. This is exactly what the ISO setting would make, with the exception that withiut ISO setting the EVF will be one stop too low. The Fuji sensor is ISOless. So there is no amplification or so to increase the number of electrons per light when you increase the ISO setting. Rico and others have explained that. I believe Canon do have sensors with true ISO settings. But as amplification also increases noise the overall performance seems to be not better at the same sensor size and time of development.

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I for one am glad that LR supports the film simulations now so I don't have to worry about this nearly as much. Fuji RAW are way too grey for my liking and every shot requires tons of work, but as long as they're in the Astia calibration profile in LR they come out workable from the start with gentle colors and really nice tones compared to the true RAW. 

 

If it wasn't for that, I might be tempted to shoot JPG like others here. 

 

Either way Fuji needs to stop this terrible smoothing effect or at least give us an option to disable it. If it's hardwired into the CPU (plausible enough) then they need to hard-wire it in with a SWITCH so it can be disabled! 

 

As anyone who's used the Detail block in LR knows, any noise reduction that works is going to do horrible damage to your detail. It's a travesty that Fuji would force users to deal with such strong NR and not even give us a way to disable it, even if it's just in JPG. 

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High ISO is one of my favourite shooting modes - my favourite thus far is the 1Dx from Canon at 204k ISO - amazing IQ with some acceptable grain as well.

 

The XT-10 apparently goes to 51200 ISO but I'm not sure if that is a native ISO 12800in RAW or 3 stops pushed via jpeg processing.

 

All the same, I'm not liking the waxy look. I'm not a jpg user, have loved RAW in LR since first I tried it, but occasionally think about shooting RAW + JPG, but with that outcome - no point, I'd just bin the JPG.

 

As for shooting in film days - I ;pve nothing more than laoding up a roll of ASA3200 and pushing it 12800 for hand held shooting at 3am when at work. Yes, the iamges were grainy - but they showed atmosphere. I often wonder if we are spoiled by the high ISO's or being robbed?

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  • 3 months later...

Helo, I've noticed this too and I agree! fuji really should let us have more control over the noise reduction! like -4 or so :)

so... ^"stop the waxing fuji ... please" put some pressure on them folks!

 

However, I have also found that adding a bunch of local contrast with certain settings works quite good of getting back some texture and ultimately amplifying noise! I do this in Darktable, I have no idea what the equivalent for [photo editor] would be.. I borrowed your image Jano; if anyone uses Darktable the settings I have is;

 

Coarsness: 10

Contrast: 5

Detail: ~1.3

 

And I also have a parametric mask that spares the upper highlights and shadows and '2' maskblur The full sized one: https://www.dropbox.com/s/g5si592hd6k90bu/cryBaby_01.jpg?dl=0

 

The original:

post-352-0-73977700-1440692517.jpg

 

Raw

post-352-0-17807000-1440692533.jpg

 

With local contrast boost

post-9862-0-73966400-1451078087_thumb.jpg

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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

So hopefully Fuji solved waxing issue:

 

http://jonasraskphotography.com/2016/01/15/the-fujifilm-x-pro2-review/

 

The reason why I sometimes still pull out my X-Pro1 (besides from the OVF experience) is the ability of the X-Trans I sensor to render high ISO jpegs without the excessive noise reduction that the X-Trans II cameras apply at these high ISO values. The result of this noise reduction is the dreaded “waxy skintones” problem! – Fujifilm solved this issue as far as I can tell in my testing. I have had zero “waxy skintones” even at ISO 10000! – You can actually also set the noise reduction to -4 now instead of -2. THANK YOU Fujifilm!

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