Wookey hole caves – high iso with a K-5

Walkway in wookey hole caves

Since I bought my Pentax K-5 one of the things I’ve been most impressed with is the low noise at high ISO settings. This picture is one which demonstrates this. I’ve already posted about the K-5’s low noise performance and used a small version of this picture in that post, but I think this picture is quite nice on its own merits so I thought I’d do a separate post featuring it.

We were on holiday in Wookey Hole in Somerset. It was raining, dull and the kids were bored so we decided to go to the wookey hole caves, which were a couple of hundred yards up the road. The caves themselves were, to be honest a bit of a disappointment. They were very expensive at about £50 for two adults and two children, and the trip through the caves was only about 30 minutes. I think the caves at the cheddar gorge are better and more spectacular. However, from a photographic point of view they gave me the opportunity to try some shots in near darkness with the iso setting on the K-5 turned up. Since I couldn’t take a tripod into the caves I had to hand hold as well, so I’m pretty impressed that I got any sort of pictures.

This particular picture was taken looking back at the walkway across the river Axe. It was lit by the lights shown in the picture and one more out-of-shot which is causing the pool of light to the top right. Although this looks reasonably light, as I recall it seemed pretty dim at the time.

I needed to do a bit of post process color cast correction to get the white balance corrected and I applied a bit of noise correction, but not too much so there doesn’t seem to be too much detail lost.

  • Pentax K-5
  • 1/50 sec
  • f/5.0
  • iso3200
  • 18mm


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