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Old Jun 15, 2013, 5:59 PM   #11
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Hi, yes it's in AF and IS is on, i have been on dslrtips.com and watched every single video lol. I did borrow my brothers 1.8 50mm for a few days and got some ok shots with it, but found it a bit hard to get used to, i didn't realise until i got to a show and went to take a pic of a car and had to walk back miles from the car to get it in, it was ok once i got the hang of it but it's not really an all round lens. Saying that, i still managed to get some blurry ones with that too.

Here is an example of full auto, i have played around with the lighting and colour to make it look a bit better but the focus you can see is blurry.
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Old Jun 15, 2013, 6:01 PM   #12
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i just posted a sample but it's not here??
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Old Jun 15, 2013, 6:14 PM   #13
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I have just been looking back over the pics i took with the 1.8 50mm and i hadn't realised how much better they are compared to the kit lens, i remember not being that pleased with them on the day but since i have been looking over my pics with the kit lens and now gone back and looked at the prime lens pics again it's a massive difference.
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Old Jun 15, 2013, 7:20 PM   #14
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While it is possible that the 18-55 you happen to have purchased might not be a good copy, it is unlikely, but just to be sure, you should go back to the camera store and see if they'll let you try another.

One of the things that often confounds new dSLR users is the very shallow Depth of Field the larger image sensor gives them. And while the 18-55 is not a "Pro" level lens, it's no slouch either. It does need to be stopped down to f/8 or f/11 to perform at its best, and even then it wouldn't give you the DoF you may be accustomed to from your experience with P&S cameras.

But since it seems that your 50/1.8 outperforms your 18-55, I suggest you try to exchange it for a better copy.
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Old Jun 15, 2013, 11:47 PM   #15
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You've gotten some good advice so far, but I'll toss out a couple of things. The image you posted appears to me to have experienced horizontal camera movement during the exposure. Look at the vertical lines, for instance the hood support on the white car (license C99UUE). There are two of them a cm apart. Also look at the fellow above the white dog, he has two noses. I don't see similar multiple images in the vertical direction. This does not show up much in the black car in the foreground because it has mostly horizontal lines and is closer to the camera so is less affected. It looks as though the camera was pivoted to the right or left during exposure more than like it was shifted to the right or left.

I wouldn't rule out this being a lens problem. I think it might be an issue with the stabilization system. I suggest you download and print a test chart and put it about 10' from the camera, taped to a wall, and take some very careful shots of it with the camera on a tripod or held steady on a table, IS off, and using the settings outlined below (if without flash) or do this and use flash since the quick burst of flash will help with some of the potential issues outlined below. Also, try some hand held shots of the test chart with IS on and off. Take five shots in each case and compare only the sharpest ones. And, if the hand held ones vary in sharpness, that could be a lens issue, but also suggests an operator problem.

A good field test would be to shoot from a tripod or from a bean bag on a fence post or with the camera braced against a building or pole. Do this with the IS turned on and off. Take several shots and compare the sharpest ones. If all are sharp, then it seems you are moving the camera a bit during the shot when you don't have something to stabilze the camera. Or shooting at too slow of a shutter speed.

Here's a checklist for sharp images from your system (I have the same lens and find it amazingly sharp for it's $150US kit price).

Tense up your body and squeeze the shutter slowly as you breath out (with or without IS turned on.) Brace yourself against something whenever possible (fence post, wall , etc.)

Shoot around f/8 (or a bit lower ... I read one review that said this lens is sharpest just below f/8). This lens will be softer wide open as will any lens. Stay between f/5.6 and f/11 for the sharpest images (sharp at the object you focus on). Above f/11 you will see increasing softening due to diffraction but if you need deeper depth of field, you may need to accept some diffraction (try to stay below f/16 even where you need greater depth of field).

Push up the ISO so that you can shoot at 1/focal length or higher. I.e., 1/50th of a second if you are shooting at 50mm. A higher ISO may introduce some noise that will soften the image if it needs considerable correction, but this still may give a sharper image. Stay below ISO 3200 if possible. With IS you should be able to shoot below 1/focal length, but try staying at 1/focal length or faster until you have the issue resolved.

That the 50/1.8 gave you better results suggests that your hand holding technique is good, but I wonder if you were being more careful because you knew that the 50/1.8 does not have IS.

Squeeze the shutter very slowly, always, but be especially careful if shooting a shutter speed below 1/focal length.

Use good camera holding practice; right hand on the right side, left hand under the body and supporting the lens with those fingers, elbows against your body tightly.

If you are a jpeg shooter, shoot at the highest jpeg quality and resolution, anything less will show up when you look at the results critically. If you want maximum sharpness, shoot RAW at the highest resolution and downgrade resolution for web delivery or smaller prints only as the last or near last step in your processing.

If you have a situation where you have to violate one or more of the above, you will get softer photos or just a limited area well in focus or you will have to deal with some noise.

Good luck. Let me know if you have any questions or I wasn't clear on something.

Last edited by Hclarkx; Jun 15, 2013 at 11:51 PM. Reason: typo
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Old Jun 16, 2013, 6:52 AM   #16
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The prime lenses are always sharper then a zoom lens. Zooms you have to accept compromises. The 18-55 will never be able to match the 50 1.8. But as others have mention, you might want to go to the shop and try another 18-55 to see if it performs better.
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Old Jun 19, 2013, 10:52 AM   #17
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Canon kit lens is actually a pretty good one. Using a DSLR is different from a P&S camera and it takes a little time to get used to it and learning how to use it. Most DSLRs don't work well with indoor flash pictures in the automatic mode. You will be disappointed if you are using that. for indoor pictures. To sum it up, this is a process which everyone has to go through, sort of like a learning curve.

I agree with shoturtle on learning how to set the camera using tutorials. Or, you can get a book which will teach you how to use the camera. Amazon.com is a good place to find such a book.
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