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Digital Cameras - HP Photosmart R707 Test Images

 

I've begun including links in our reviews to a Thumber-generated index page for the test shots. The Thumber data includes a host of information on the images, including shutter speed, ISOsetting, compression setting, etc. Rather than clutter the page below with *all*that detail, we're posting the Thumber index so only those interested inthe information need wade through it!

 

"Sunlit" Portrait:
(This is my new "Outdoor" Portrait test - read more about it here.)

Better than average, but somewhat high contrast at the default setting. Low contrast option helps, but hurts color saturation.

Contrast is a little high at the default contrast setting, but the R707 still manages to hold onto some highlight detail. The low contrast setting does an excellent job of preserving highlight detail, but cuts color saturation a fair bit in the process.
The extreme tonal range of this image makes it a tough shot for many digicams, which is precisely why I set it up this way, and why I shoot it with no fill flash or reflector to open the shadows. (The color temperature and main/fill balance here closely match that of summer sunshine here in North Georgia.) The object is to hold both highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat" picture with muddy colors, and the HP Photosmart R707 had a little trouble.

The shot at right was taken with a +0.3 EV exposure compensation adjustment, and the contrast set to low. (Here's the shot at the default contrast setting, which results in slightly dark shadows.) Shooting at the low contrast setting resulted in the camera doing an exceptionally good job with the highlight detail, but at the cost of rather washed-out looking color. I stuck with the Auto white balance setting, though both the Daylight and Manual settings produced good results with only slight color casts.

The HP R707's color is technically more accurate than that of many digicams, but most consumers will likely see its images as being a little flat, because it doesn't have the boosted color saturation of many competing models. The colors in this shot are actually pretty close to being on the money, relative to how the scene looks in real life. My only complaint is that Marti's skin tones look just a tad yellowish to me. As noted though, I suspect that most consumers would find this image a little dull-looking, being accustomed to seeing more pumped-up color from most consumer digicams.

The R707 has a lot of native resolution, but a lot of it is unfortunately lost in this shot to anti-noise processing. This is particularly visible in the smudging of fine detail in Marti's hair, and in the almost painterly appearance of some of the flowers and foliage.) Detail is also very low in the shadows, with high image noise.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.0 EV, see files R7OUTAP0.HTM through R7OUTAP3.HTM on the thumbnail index page.

Contrast Series:
A good range of control, but too much interaction with the color saturation adjustment.
Contrast Series
Low
Normal
High


Saturation Series:
A good range of adjustment. Many consumers will like the "high" setting.

Saturation Series
Low
Normal
High

Adaptive Lighting Series:
The R707 offers HP's exclusive Adaptive Lighting technology, which acts like a "digital fill flash." For high contrast or backlit subjects, the camera can automatically brighten dark areas without increasing the highlights. The feature works very well, but the High setting decreases color saturation slightly, and the brightened shadow areas can show a lot of noise. Still, a very nice feature for a consumer camera.

Adaptive Lighting Series
Off
Low Setting
High Setting



 

Closer Portrait:
Adjusting the contrast to low helps the exposure, but produces very flat-looking color.

Stronger resolution and detail, and very good control of highlight detail with the low contrast setting , but rather flat color as a result.

Overall results are similar to the wider shot above, and the R707's 3x optical zoom lens prevents any geometric distortion of Marti's feature. The shots at right were taken with a +0.7 EV exposure compensation adjustment and the camera's contrast control set to its low setting. The net result is actually a pretty nice image, particularly considering the deliberate harshness of the light source. The low contrast setting further cuts the camera's already modest color saturation, but in this image it looks quite nice. Resolution and detail are stronger in this close-up, with better definition than in the wider shot above. Still, high image noise obscures detail in the shadows. All in all though, a nice job with a very tough subject.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.0 EV, see files R7FACAP0.HTM through R7FACAP3.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

Indoor Portrait, Flash:
Normal Flash
+0.3 EV
Slow-Sync Flash
Default Exposure

A bright flash, even at the default exposure. Some orange color cast from the room lighting, however.

The R707's built-in flash illuminated the subject very well at its default exposure setting, though I opted for a +0.3 EV boost in exposure compensation for the main shot. The strong incandescent room lighting produced an orange cast in this shot. The camera's Slow-Sync flash mode produced similar results at its default exposure, but with much less orange cast. (This is very unusual, generally the longer exposure time in slow-sync mode results in a greater effect from the room lighting). Increasing the exposure compensation in Slow-Sync mode resulted in strong shifts in color balance, in addition to overexposing the image. At the highest setting, color was strongly orange, while the lower settings resulted in strong blue casts. Overall though, the default exposure setting in slow-sync flash mode produced an exceptionally well-balanced image.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files R7INFP0.HTM through R7INFP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.

To view the same exposure series in Slow-Sync mode, see files R7INFSP0.HTM through R7INFSP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

Indoor Portrait, No Flash:
Auto White Balance
Incandescent White Balance
Manual White Balance

Excellent color balance with all three white balance options. Good exposure as well.

This shot is always a very tough test of a camera's white balance capability, given the strong, yellowish color cast of the household incandescent bulbs used for the lighting. The R707's Auto, Incandescent, and Manual white balance settings all performed very well here, each producing nearly identical results to the others. In the end, I settled on the Manual option for the main shot, as it was just a shade warmer than the other two. The blue flowers in the bouquet are very dark and purplish (not surprising, given the light source), and the red flowers appear almost fuchsia. The main exposure was taken with a +0.3 EV exposure compensation boost, which is much less than the average amount required for this shot. All in all, the HP R707 does much better than average with this difficult shot.

ISO Series:
Noise levels in the R707's images are for the most part low to moderate, but it's clear that this is the result of very heavy-handed noise-reduction processing that trades away much of the sensor's resolution in areas of subtle contrast. - Parts of the ISO 400 image here look more like a painting than a photograph. - Stay at ISO 200 or below for better image quality.

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400



 

House Shot:
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Fine detail in some areas, but a general fuzziness and very soft corners. Good color though.

The R707's Daylight white balance setting actually produced the best overall color here, with a good white value on the house trim and just enough warmth for natural-looking color. The Auto setting resulted in a red cast, while the Manual setting turned out much too cool for my taste. Resolution is high, with a lot of detail visible in the tree limbs and shrubbery, but many details are soft, almost ghostly, and the corners of the image are very soft, the softness extending pretty far into the frame.



 

Far-Field Test

High resolution, but slightly soft details, and very soft corners. Good dynamic range though.

This image is shot at infinity to test far-field lens performance. NOTE that this image cannot be directly compared to the other "house" shot, which is a poster, shot in the studio. The rendering of detail in the poster will be very different than in this shot, and color values (and even the presence or absence of leaves on the trees!) will vary in this subject as the seasons progress. In general though, you can evaluate detail in the bricks, shingles and window detail, and in the tree branches against the sky. Compression artifacts are most likely to show in the trim along the edge of the roof, in the bricks, or in the relatively "flat" areas in the windows.

This is my ultimate "resolution shot," given the infinite range of detail in a natural scene like this, and the R707 picked up a lot of fine detail, although details are generally a little softer than I'd expect from a 5-megapixel camera. The camera picks up good detail in the bright white paint surrounding the bay window, a trouble spot for many digicams. (Although the R707 was helped by the rather hazy, overcast sky the day this shot was taken.) Detail is also fairly strong in the shadow area above the front door. Overall color looks good, and exposure is about right. The table below shows a standard resolution and quality series, followed by ISO, sharpness, saturation, contrast, and Adaptive Lighting series.

Resolution Series:

Wide Angle "Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
2,592 x 1,952
R7FAR2592F
R7FAR2592N
2,048 x 1,536
R7FAR2048
-
1,280 x 960
R7FAR1280
-
640 x 480
R7FAR0640
-


ISO Series:

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400


Sharpness Series:

Sharpness Series
Soft
Normal
Sharp


Saturation Series:

Saturation Series
Low
Normal
High


Contrast Series:

Contrast Series
Low
Normal
High


Adaptive Lighting Series:

Adaptive Lighting Series
Off
Low
High



 

Lens Zoom Range

A typical 3x zoom range.

I routinely shoot this series of images to show the field of view for each camera, with the lens at full wide angle, at maximum telephoto (3x, in this case), and at full telephoto with the digital zoom enabled. The R707's lens is equivalent to a 39-117mm zoom on a 35mm camera. That corresponds to a moderate wide angle to a moderate telephoto. Following are the results at each zoom setting.

Wide Angle
3x Telephoto
Low Digital Telephoto
Mid-Range Digital Telephoto
Full 8x Digital Telephoto



 

Musicians Poster
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Reddish color casts in response to the large amount of blue in the composition, but strong detail.

This shot is often a tough test for digicams, as the abundance of blue in the composition frequently tricks white balance systems into producing a warm color balance. Both the R707's Auto and Daylight white balance settings fell victim to this trap, and produced strong red casts. The Manual setting erred in the opposite direction, producing an image with a strong blue cast. Despite the blue/magenta color balance, I felt skin tones were closest to reality with the Manual setting though, so went with that as my main selection for this shot. (You could likely warm them up some with image editing software on a computer. The reddish skin tones were much too strong.) The blue background and robe are a bit purplish from the magenta tint as well. Resolution is high, with a lot of fine detail in the embroidery of the blue robe, instrument strings, and flower garland. (The original data file for this poster was only 20MB though, so cameras like the R707 are definitely capable of showing more detail than the poster has in it.) As with the other images from the R707 though, details are somewhat soft and the corners of the frame are very soft. Fine, curved edges tend to have a jagged appearance as well.



 

Macro Shot
Standard Macro Shot
Macro with Flash

An average-sized macro area, but great resolution and detail. Flash has trouble up close though.

The R707 performed well in the macro category, capturing a minimum area of 3.22 x 2.42 inches (82 x 62 millimeters). Resolution is very high, as the brooch, coins, and dollar bill all show strong, well-defined detail. The corners of the frame are rather soft though, and the softness extends quite a ways into the image. The R707's flash had trouble throttling down for the macro area, however, and overexposed the shot. - Plan on using external lighting for your closest macro shots.



 

"Davebox" Test Target
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Good overall exposure, and better than average color accuracy, slightly high contrast.

The R707's Auto white balance setting, though slightly reddish, produced the best overall color and white value here. The Daylight setting resulted in a warmer image, while the Manual option produced a cooler cast. Exposure looks good, though contrast is a little high. Despite this, the R707 distinguishes the subtle tonal variations of the Q60 target pretty well. Compared to the results produced by most consumer digicams, the large color blocks here look a tad washed out, but in actual fact, the R707's color rendering is very close to being dead-on, with little or n one of the oversaturation that's common in consumer digicams. The image as a whole is slightly soft, lens flare around the edges of the frame give the Q60 and some of the swatches of the MacBeth chart an almost ghostly appearance. Shadow detail is quite limited in the charcoal briquettes, and noise is high there as well.


The results in the tests below mirror those seen above in other test shots above. The test series are repeated here without further comment, for the benefit of our more quantitatively-oriented readers.


ISO Series:

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400


Saturation Series:

Saturation Series
Low
Normal
High


Contrast Series:

Contrast Series
Low
Normal
High


Color Series:

Color Series
Full Color
Black and White
Sepia



 

Low-Light Tests

Good exposures even at the lowest light levels and good color, but high image noise.

The R707 produced clear, bright, usable images down to the 1/16 foot-candle (0.67 lux) limit of my test, at all three ISO settings. Color balance was pretty good with the Auto white balance option, with only minor color casts. The R707 would benefit greatly from a lower-noise image sensor though, as image noise was quite high at the ISO 200 and 400 settings, and moderately high even at ISO 100. On a positive note though, the R707 focused well down to the lowest limit of my test. The table below shows the best exposure I was able to obtain for each of a range of illumination levels. Images in this table (like all sample photos) are untouched, exactly as they came from the camera.

(Note: If you'd like to use a light meter to check light levels for subjects you might be interested in shooting, a light level of one foot-candle corresponds to a normal exposure of two seconds at f/2.8 and ISO 100.)

  1 fc
11 lux
1/2 fc
5.5 lux
1/4 fc
2.7 lux
1/8 fc
1.3 lux
1/16 fc
0.67 lux
ISO
100
Click to see R7LL1003.JPG
2.9201 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL1004.JPG
4.86971 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL1005.JPG
11.68118 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL1006.JPG
14.72947 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL1007.JPG
15.0074 sec
f2.8
ISO
200
Click to see R7LL2003.JPG
2.6806 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL2004.JPG
4.85567 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL2005.JPG
5.99012 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL2006.JPG
7.36247 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL2007.JPG
7.54177 sec
f2.8
ISO
400
Click to see R7LL4003.JPG
1.40367 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL4004.JPG
2.3491 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL4005.JPG
3.02888 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL4006.JPG
3.6818 sec
f2.8
Click to see R7LL4007.JPG
3.79118 sec
f2.8



 

Flash Range Test

A fairly powerful flash, with a range of 9-10 feet, but only a small amount of falloff at the 14 foot limit of our test.

8 ft 9 ft 10 ft 11 ft 12 ft 13 ft 14 ft
Click to see R7FL08.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL09.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL10.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL11.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL12.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL13.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100
Click to see R7FL14.JPG
1/125 sec
f4.9
ISO 100



 

ISO-12233 (WG-18) Resolution Test

High resolution, 1,350 lines of "strong detail." High barrel distortion at wide angle. "Purple fringing" at wide angle, severe coma at telephoto.

The R707 delivered maximum resolution befitting its 5-megapixel class on the "laboratory" resolution test chart. It started showing artifacts in the test patterns at resolutions as low as 600 lines per picture height, in both horizontal and vertical directions. However, I found "strong detail" out to at least 1,300 lines vertically, 1,350 lines horizontally. "Extinction" of the target patterns didn't occur until about 1,650 lines.

Geometric distortion on the R707 is a good bit higher than average at the wide-angle end, where I measured approximately 1.17 percent barrel distortion. The telephoto end fared a little better, as I measured approximately 0.2 percent barrel distortion. While chromatic aberration seems low, the wide angle images show a fair bit of what looks to be "purple fringing", a bright purple fringe around dark objects against bright backgrounds. At telephoto focal lengths, severe coma blurs the corners of the image badly, extending a fair ways into the image area. Overall, its lens appears to be one of the weaker elements of the R707's design.

Resolution Series, 50mm
Wide Angle "Super Fine"
JPEG
"Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
"Economy"
JPEG
2,592 x 1,952
R7RES2592SF
R7RES2592F
R7RES2592N
R7RES2592E
2,048 x 1,536
R7RES2048
-
-
-
1,280 x 960
R7RES1280
-
-
-
640 x 480
R7RES0640
-
-
-

 

Resolution Test, Zoom Series
2,592 x 1,952
(Fine, Wide)
R7RESW
2,592 x 1,952
(Fine, Tele)
R7REST

Sharpness Series

Sharpness Series
Soft
Normal
Sharp


 

Viewfinder Accuracy/Flash Uniformity

A tight optical viewfinder, but very accurate LCD monitor.

The R707's optical viewfinder proved a little tight, showing only about 85 percent frame accuracy at wide angle, and about 84 percent at telephoto. (This is about average accuracy among the digicams I test, but is less than what I consider ideal for consumer cameras.) The LCD monitor fared much better, showing about 99 percent frame accuracy at both zoom settings. Given that I like LCD monitors to be as close to 100 percent accuracy as possible, the R707's LCD monitor is close to perfect in that regard, but I'd like to see the optical viewfinder be a little more precise. Flash distribution is fairly even at wide angle, with just a little falloff at the corners and edges of the frame. At telephoto, flash distribution appears more uniform.




Photosmart R707 Review
Photosmart R707 Test Images
Photosmart R707 Specifications
Photosmart R707 "Picky Details"
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