Some days ago I mentioned I would be checking out DxO Optics Pro as an alternative to Adobe Lightroom as raw converter. This was based on a suggestion that the DxO software might do a better job at processing high ISO Sony files than other converters.
Well here is the best I could get out of Lightroom 2.2 with a particular ISO 1600 test image:
And this is the result with DxO Optics Pro 5:
Here are some 100% crops, first Lightroom:
And then DxO:
I find the DxO easier on the eye without sacrificing detail. The noise is not as prominent or obtrusive, and the overall result is a little more contrasty than I could achieve with Lightroom.
Something to think about.