I spent a good while with the camera and am really impressed with its potential. I shot several images at a variety of sensitivity settings, including all the way up to ISO 204,800. Even on the small 3.2″ LCD, it’s easy to tell that these ISO 204,800 images look like crap. I can’t see where they would be usable in any circumstances – just tons of mush and chroma noise.
Back it down to ISO 12,800 and you’ve got another story. I shot a few frames at ISO 12,800 that looked clean at first glance. I zoomed the image into 100% and, sure, there’s noise there, but it’s mostly fine grain luma noise with just a hint of chroma noise mixed in. It looks like Canon has nailed the noise control on the 1D X though, because ISO 12,800 may become the new ISO 3200.
My hands on with the Canon EOS 1D X shortly after the camera's launch at PhotoPlus 2011:
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