Canon EOS 5D III fights Nikon D800E with software

Canon has responded to Nikon?s claims for higher image resolution in the D800E by introducing Digital Lens Optimizer in its latest version of the Digital Photo Professional (DPP) software package. Released to coincide with the launch of the Canon EOS 5D III, DPP v3.11 features a new module that Canon says is designed to correct optical issues such as vignetting and curvilinear distortion, but also ?loss of resolution caused by a low pass filter?.

The software module works by understanding exactly how light passes through Canon lenses and filters before reaching the sensor. With the focus distance, focal length and aperture data included in the exif header of the image file, the software knows what aberrations to expect. It then corrects them by ?applying an inverse function? to the image. Canon says this then takes the image ?closer to how the scene looks to the naked eye.?

Last month Nikon announced a version of the D800, the D800E, that uses a new high pass filter that effectively cancels itself out. The idea is that while this leaves files open to the introduction of false colours and possible moiré patterning in fine weave fabrics and high frequency detail, the new filter passes more information to the sensor, and thus images will be higher in resolution than those shot through a standard high pass filter. Canon?s EOS 5D III does have a high pass filter, but Canon claims the Digital Lens Optimizer (DLO) module of DPP can reverse the degradation of the optical path caused by a low pass filter, and inject more resolution and detail back into the file.

It isn?t clear yet whether this element of DLO will be backwards compatible with previous EOS and PowerShot G models as the program will presumably need to understand the characteristics of every model it works with. Neither is it clear exactly how much extra resolution we should expect, but we?ll update you when we have more details.

See our main Canon EOS 5D III news story here