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Why is the quality of the Canon R6 Mark 2 grainy when compared to a DSLR image (vs. Canon 6D)?

LouD
Apprentice

When I look at photos from my new mirrorless Canon R6 Mark II vs. my old DSLR Canon 6D the images from the R6 are terribly dirty and 'digital' looking, especially when zoomed in, even just a little!?

I understand that ISO and light plays a huge part of whether a photo is grainy or not, and that is NOT the solution to my inquiry. What I'm seeing is something that is showing up whether I'm shooting at 100 ISO or 3200 ISO. It's a grainy look, and I think to myself "this cannot be right...I would much rather blow up a CR2 from my 6D rather than use any of CR3's from my R6..."

I purchased a Canon R6 Mark II because I had read (and been told by folks who have mirrorless Sony's) how the mirrorless handles low light better etc. I decided to get a Canon version because I'm familiar with the brand, own a number of lenses, am familiar with the operating system and heard good things about this R6 Mark II version. 

Are other people experiencing this? Is there some setting in the camera that can be switched to make this better? I feel like this literally can't be something everyone is excited about...it must be something that I haven't switched off or on....I shoot RAW + JPG, and yes, once I have the RAW file I mess around with the images settings, but I know what was possible with the DSLR images and what I could push...and it's just not true of these RF images. 

Help!? 

I've attached a sample comparison image (I'm not going to provide the details of the images, because for my purposes, it doesn't matter. What I see in the quality is happening if shooting at 100 ISO or 4000 ISO, so I'm not looking to be told "use a smaller ISO or more light"). I use Canon lenses, some are RF (when using the R6 Mark II body) and some are EF (with a Canon adaptor). 

I have a comparison image attached - The left is of food and the right is lace from a dress. They both have been zoomed in on 110%. The left image (bowl of food) is with the R6 Mark II and the right (dress) is with the 6D. 

If you look at the bowl of food, it's not exactly 'pixelation' that's happening, its some sort of grain or color spotting that is creating the image in a way I've seen iPhones build an image.... I can only refer to it as a very 'digital' look. The lace, is handling the dark areas much more gracefully and could be pushed farther if needed.

It's not the quality I would expect of Canon, so I'm assuming I must be doing something wrong? Is this a setting? Do I need to turn something off or on? Is this just the way mirror cameras look (if so, I don't think I want it anymore). 

What's up? 

Screenshot 2023-12-16 115720 (1).png

 

10 REPLIES 10

shadowsports
Legend
Legend

Greetings,

Welcome LouD!

I'd agree that the food shot looks very poor.  The good news is this is not a reflection of mirrorless vs DSLR.  While the technologies are different, both are capable of capturing great quality images.  Differences between .CR2 and CR3.  These are file types (containers) and don't influence the quality of your images.

If you want to make a comparison, shoot the same subject side by side under the same lighting conditions, lens, etc.  If you would like our help and advice, you'll need to share your shooting settings, lighting, mode, lens, ISO, aperture and shutter speed.  Actually, these settings do matter.  We may ask for RAW samples as well.  Food photography is harder than you might think.  The edge of your plate appears to be at the same FL as the food.  Why is it so badly out of focus?  Give us the data so we can rule out the obvious and make informed conclusions, not guesses. 

What you have presented is not the quality I would expect or have seen from Canon either.  I really enjoyed my DSLR's but mirrorless has been an even more rewarding experience.  We'll do our best to help, but cannot be as effective without the facts.  Respectfully, an out of focus grainy photo isn't going to be enough.   Look forward to your reply.      

~Rick
Bay Area - CA


~R5 C (1.0.6.1) ~RF Trinity, ~RF 100 Macro, ~RF 100~400, ~RF 100~500, +RF 1.4x TC, +Canon Control Ring, BG-R10, 430EX III-RT ~DxO PhotoLab Elite ~DaVinci Resolve ~Windows11 Pro ~ImageClass MF644Cdw/MF656Cdw ~Pixel 8
~CarePaks Are Worth It

Peter
Authority
Authority

Share raw files and, as already has been said, side by side comparison. No need for JPEG because they are already embedded when you shoot raw.

 

Waddizzle
Legend
Legend

“ I understand that ISO and light plays a huge part of whether a photo is grainy or not, and that is NOT the solution to my inquiry. “

Welcome to the forum!

I completely disagree with the above statement.  

Exposure settings aside, you are comparing IQ of an APS-C sensor camera with a FF sensor camera.  The FF image sensor gathers significantly more light than an APS-C sensor.  This is because given an equal sensor resolution, the FF sensor will have larger photosites, which are the elements that collect light.

A FF sensor is 36x24mm size.  An APS-C sensor is about 24x16mm in size.  This difference is a 1.5 crop factor, which makes the math easy.  Each is covered with millions of microscopic photosites.

Allow me to make a comparison to an ice cube tray.  Let’s assume that we have an ice cube tray that is 24x16 inches.  We have ice cube cups arranged 24x16.  For arguments sake, lets declare the size of each cup as 1” x 1”.  Let’s pretend this is an APS-C image sensor.

Now let’s upsize that ice cube tray by a 1.5 crop factor to 35x24 inches.  This upsize will also increase the size of the ice cube cups to 1.5” x 1.5”.  This larger ice cube tray is the equivalent of a full frame sensor.

This is where the fun begins.  

Let’s place take each tray outside on a rainy day.  Let’s allow them to collect water for 30 minutes.  The weatherman say it is raining at one inch per hour.  So our ice cube trays should collect about 1/2 of an inch of water.  This falling water is comparable to light falling on the image sensor.

Which tray will collect more water in each cup?  The larger tray will collect more water, just as a full frame sensor will collect more light.  More gathered light means less noise and more detail in the captured image.

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."

While I agree with your summary of comparing cameras with vastly different sized sensor sites, the EOS R6 (1st and 2nd gen) is full frame.

--
Ricky

Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers

Actually, both cameras are full frame.  You might be thinking of the 60D which is ASP-C, but the 6D is full frame.


Gary

Digital: Canon R6 Mk ll, R8, RP, 60D, various RF, EF, and Rokinon lenses
Film: (still using) Pentax Spotmatic, Pentax K1000, Pentax K2000, Miranda DR, Zenit 12XP, Kodak Retina Automatic II, Kodak Duaflex III, and various lenses

Tronhard
Elite
Elite

I am somewhat confused.  The OP's title indicates they are comparing an R6MkII to a Canon EOS 6D, which has a full-frame sensor, so I can't see where the comparison between a crop sensor and a FF sensor comes in.
TBH, one can't expect a good answer when we get two images of JPG files of two different objects, that (as has been mentioned by my colleagues) have already been processed as a JPG, then reduced in size to post here. 

If one wants good analysis, we need a link to the RAW unprocessed files of the same object, under the same lighting conditions with the full EXIF data.  This information is not irrelevant, in fact it's very necessary.  The people here are experienced, many of us professionals or ex-pro's so we can give you good advice, but not without the data.  ISO is also significant, especially if the two images were shot at different settings.  One can get noise at any ISO from under-exposure, and that is where some idea of other settings comes in.

It would also help to know any specific configurations to applied the camera, either in the settings permanently or for these shots - were they both taken in M, AV or whatever mode?  What lighting methods were used and, again, were they both consistent?

I have the R6MkII and it has a brilliant sensor so, as you say, it's not the design of the camera that is the issue.  Technology has come a long way since the advent of the 6D and the R6II is the latest iteration of that.


cheers, TREVOR

"The Amount of Misery expands to fill the space available"
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

I am beginning to suspect the original post has been edited.

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."

Thanks Bill, that makes sense.  That said, I think we need better data to come to any conclusion.


cheers, TREVOR

"The Amount of Misery expands to fill the space available"
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

justadude
Rising Star

Reading over your post, I do not see any mention of lenses, which can play a huge difference.  So in addition to same subject, same lighting, same settings on everything, you also need to compare with the same lenses.

I have recently sold my 6D and my RP.  I have also recently purchased the R6 Mark ll.  Looking at RAW files side by side of night skies (away from light pollution) with all three cameras, and all three using my Rokinon 14mm F/2.8 lens, ISO at 3200, for 30 seconds... The old 6D was a nighttime beast.  With 13 years old technology, the files are similar in noise with the 4 year old RP (but just a slight bit noisier at 100% view).  However the R6 Mk2 has a very noticeable improvement over both of the other cameras.

I also had to look at files from all three cameras using my Canon 70-200mm F/2.8 at ISO 100 on daylight photos.  Pretty much the same results for noise and/or pixelization. 


Gary

Digital: Canon R6 Mk ll, R8, RP, 60D, various RF, EF, and Rokinon lenses
Film: (still using) Pentax Spotmatic, Pentax K1000, Pentax K2000, Miranda DR, Zenit 12XP, Kodak Retina Automatic II, Kodak Duaflex III, and various lenses
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