Thoughts on DxO Labs measurements

The search for reliable information on cameras is a very difficult task nowadays. There are websites that kind of measure something and even justify their measurements technically. However all those measurements have nothing to do with real life (and I am not talking about the photos of nearby brick walls or indoor photos under the artificial lighting). It is sad when such a “reliable” source emerges and starts to stamp reviews that rule the public consciousness, despite the fact that not everything in those reviews corresponds to reality.

If you are still able to perceive this world sanely, then such website is clearly not for you, because one does not simply understand what he does when he rates the almost fully cut down oddball thing designed for fans of compactness higher than a powerful versatile multi-purpose tool, which already proved itself by hundreds of masterpieces and countless thousands of beautiful shots made by professional and amateur photographers.

You may object that, in this case, it was a comparison of sensors and not the cameras. Well, the sensor does not make photos per se and can’t be examined apart from the camera. There can be lots of various measurements, but in real world, when you will take both cameras and try to use them to the max in different photographic situations, you will soon realize that the pocket oddball thing simply can’t be compared with the well-regarded photo camera. And if we then will return again to the fact that the sensor does not make photos per se (such return is just a result of using a common sense), then even the comparison of these cameras will look like a nonsense: a 18.5mm fixed prime lens with not especially desirable speed of 2.8 for a 1.5x cropped sensor camera (being a 28mm equivalent, this lens is not suitable enough to enjoy full-scale landscape photography or portraiture in its various aspects) vs. a whole lineup of full-frame lenses covering a focal range from ultra-wide to super-telephoto, and everything in between.

Such approach has nothing to do with photography. Those who like to argue using measurements from that website, not paying attention to the real images, do not understand the photography also.

There is no doubt that DxO Labs are biased and diligently promote such brands as Nikon (a manufacturer of cameras) and Sony (a manufacturer of sensors). Their website is an odd source of numbers, figures and tests discussed by immature and inexperienced minds at forums. In fact, it alienates people from the roots of photography, diluting its conception and relegating it to the level of bare numbers and their interpretations. It’s a very dangerous way built on biased promotion of select brands, full of errors and even specially prepared, accurately dosed misinformation in regard to competitor’s brands. There’s not much to do: increase this rating a bit, decrease that a bit, emphasize here, and a simple brain manipulation is ready. A machine of disgusting viral marketing at its beauty.

Alas, such websites should have been emerged, sooner or later. They are also a sign of our corrupt, unprincipled and deceitful times. And lie drags everything else, leading us to a shameful mechanistic thoughtlessness. Unfortunately, no one can disallow publication of ambiguous data obtained “using company’s own methods and procedures”, that’s why the DxO “virus” became an acceptable argument of the modern photographic discussions and spreads further over the Internet forums.

On the other side, it’s not all that scary for those who are able to see and differentiate. And for DxO fans, if you are only interested in mindless consummation of numbers without deeper analysis – then read and get “enlightened”. You deserve it.


DxO user - 11.02.2017 в 23:56

«rates the almost fully cut down oddball thing designed for fans of compactness than a powerful versatile multi-purpose tool»
While the author may be right in that the particular comparison is misleading, it is only if you believe that a superior sensor is the only thing you need for a quality image. The message is offset by relentlessly blasting DxO as a company that is, in the author’s opinion, focused mostly on misleading marketing. I have been using their software for many years for stock photography images, and also to demonstrate to my friends the power of RAW format. In many cases, it was revealed that many cameras simply have lousy in-camera JPEGs, but if one uses RAW from the same camera, the result can be considerably better. So, in that area the DxO people certainly know what they are doing. That statement, of course, does not contradict that they may be guilty as charged at biased marketing, but it is probably more productive to argue that the sensor alone does not determine the quality, and that to use its capabilities to the fullest, one has to use RAW processing. If your camera does not offer RAW, there is not much you can do to improve the JPEGs. No affiliation to DxO, just a happy customer.

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