P4P vs P4 Camera resolution comparison

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I bought a P4P this weekend specifically for its larger imager and higher resolution camera. My application is photogrammetry as it applies to gold exploration so still image quality is more important than movie quality.

The good news - resolution is better than the P4.
The bad news - its not as good as I had expected.

The photo below shows a comparison between the P4P (left), the P4 (middle) and an iPhone 6 Plus (right).

Photos were taken from a distance of 9 metres with both drones static on a table (similar results were obtained when the drones were flown 10 metres above the target).

The increase in resolution over the P4 is significant but what is disappointing is the amount of colour fringing in the P4P image. The target was purely monochrome and yet parts of it in the P4P image appear coloured.

Also disappointing was the comparison between the P4P and an iPhone 6 plus. The P4P is better than the iPhone 6 Plus but the difference is not as great as I would have expected considering the comparison is between an 8mp image and a 20mp one and between a 1/3" sensor and a 1" one.

In order to minimize the colour fringing, I stopped the P4P down to F11. This did produce substantially less colour fringing but did little to improve overall quality.

Phantom 4 vs Pro vs iPhone 6 9m distance comparison 1.jpg

Phantom 4 vs Pro 9m distance comparison 1a.JPG
 
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I bought a P4P this weekend specifically for its larger imager and higher resolution camera. My application is photogrammetry as it applies to gold exploration so still image quality is more important than movie quality.

The good news - resolution is better than the P4.
The bad news - its not as good as I had expected.
The Phantom is an aerial camera and you'll get a much better idea of its abilities by shooting in the air rather than static targets at 9 metres.
Look at these two shots from another member to get a different perspective:
Does anyone try a range test for your new p4p? I did but totally disappointed><"
Does anyone try a range test for your new p4p? I did but totally disappointed><"
 
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The Phantom is an aerial camera and you'll get a much better idea of its abilities by shooting in the air rather than static targets at 9 metres.
Look at these two shots from another member to get a different perspective:
Does anyone try a range test for your new p4p? I did but totally disappointed><"
Does anyone try a range test for your new p4p? I did but totally disappointed><"

As I said in my original post, I performed a similar test flying at 10 metres. Similarly disappointing results.
 
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I think your mistake was stopping down to F/11. You have probably gone into the diffraction area where smaller apertures produce less sharpness. My friend has an X5 camera on his inspire and couldn't get sharp images at small apertures. Around F/5.6 was OK. This problem is common in all aspects of photography not just the P4P camera. Every lens is different and has its own special optical characteristics where diffraction starts to impact on sharpness.
 
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I think your mistake was stopping down to F/11. You have probably gone into the diffraction area where smaller apertures produce less sharpness. My friend has an X5 camera on his inspire and couldn't get sharp images at small apertures. Around F/5.6 was OK. This problem is common in all aspects of photography not just the P4P camera. Every lens is different and has its own special optical characteristics where diffraction starts to impact on sharpness.

The reason for stopping down was to see if it minimizes the colour fringing - it did but as you say it did not improve resolution.
 
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I was about to pull the trigger. I thought it was going to be a huge improvement.

Going to keep flying the Mavic and Phantom


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Just out of curiosity have you tried doing the comparison using frames taken from a video of the target?



From OPs post it is a huge improvement over a P4?

Yes I have compared with a 4K video frame. Subjectively the 4K video frame is very similar to the Phantom 4 12 megapixel image - slightly worse resolution as you would expect.
 
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I was about to pull the trigger. I thought it was going to be a huge improvement.

Going to keep flying the Mavic and Phantom


PhantomPilots

lol. It is a significant improvement. Much better than what you are working with. Look at the images in the first post.
 
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Also, is it fair to capture an image from the same distance on a 12MP and a 20MP camera, enlarge them equally and and expect an apples to apples result? Would that not be analogous and equally unfair If I was to put an 14mm (14mm is the 20mm at 35mm equivalent for a Nikon crop sensor) Lens on my Nikon D80 10MP and also my Nikon D7100 24MP and capture the same graph @ 9 meters and then crop in to a 1:1 on the D7100. No. The D80 would be pixilated, blurry and look like crap. Shoot the P4 at half the distance of the P4P for a one to one comparison. Unless of course that you are checking the amount of crop that can be tolerated without a problem then the greater MP will win.
 
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The real advantage of a larger sensor is less noise in low light, not resolution.


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A larger sensor also helps a good lens system to project a sharper, clearer (better contrast) picture onto the sensor. So, even with the exact same pixel count, you end up with a much sharper, clearer picture. I think the P4P camera is good - certainly better than the prior P3P and P4 cams. However, the lens system - not so sure: Focus may be an issue here and there and what disturbs me most is the very pronounced vignetting and softness of images towards the edges at 3:2 ratio.
 
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A larger sensor also helps a good lens system to project a sharper, clearer (better contrast) picture onto the sensor. So, even with the exact same pixel count, you end up with a much sharper, clearer picture. I think the P4P camera is good - certainly better than the prior P3P and P4 cams. However, the lens system - not so sure: Focus may be an issue here and there and what disturbs me most is the very pronounced vignetting and softness of images towards the edges at 3:2 ratio.

Haven't had the chance to test my p4p in depth for now, but here's my 2 cents !

I can understand why OP is disappointed, and doing photogrammetry does require sometime to shoot from a short distance - thus sharpness at this distance is very important.
But then, if you really need too, there's still better drones than phantom series for a professional usage - such as the inspire series, or even bigger drones able to carry DSLRs.

I read in a previous post that the vignetting on the p4p does not appear in JPEG shots - so I assume there is a lens profile built into the p4p specifically designed to correct this vignetting.
DJI may provide a lens profile working with Adobe LR - at least I hope so !

Anyway I'm used to vignetting when shooting in wide angle (my Sigma 10-18mm tends to have some strong vignetting), but it's rarely an issue as far as I can correct it in LR.

To conclude, judging by the images in OP's post, it seems that p4p is still a huge improvement compared to p4 !
 
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lol. It is a significant improvement. Much better than what you are working with. Look at the images in the first post.

It's an improvement but in my opinion it isn't HUGE. I would not sell a P4 for the pro. Just my opinion it isn't a monumental leap in quality. It's better, as expected, just not the improvement I expected.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
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It's an improvement but in my opinion it isn't HUGE. I would not sell a P4 for the pro. Just my opinion it isn't a monumental leap in quality. It's better, as expected, just not the improvement I expected.


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Doubling dynamic range from 5 stops to 12 is pretty huge. Plus being able to control FSTOP is a big deal as well. And now that they fixed dlog, the end results should be even better. And recording in h265 also improves scenes with motion like rivers or faster pans.

But if you don't really do any post processing of your images and videos, or you don't have an interesting in changing settings like fstop, iso, etc, then yea it doesn't make sense to upgrade to the newer camera. I'm just a hobbyist, but I do post correction of images and video, and the difference is substantial to me.


Plus, there's non camera related things, rear OA sensors, 30mph in P mode with OA on great for tracking fast moving objects or flying to places faster with OA, longer range (4 miles), side sensors for tight spaces when used in tripod mode, backtrack RTH, etc.
 
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It's an improvement but in my opinion it isn't HUGE. I would not sell a P4 for the pro. Just my opinion it isn't a monumental leap in quality. It's better, as expected, just not the improvement I expected.

The ability to change camera settings, the quality in low light, and the dynamic range are HUGE improvements over the p4's camera.

You must just be a drone flyer, and not a photographer.

WTH.jpg
 
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