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Old Mar 29, 2010, 12:38 PM   #1
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Default Cropping Question

I recently purchased the S90 because I was having difficulty getting decent pictures inside of the school. I took pictures at my son's Pinewood Derby and here's my question. I know the S90 is only at it's fastest when it's zoomed all the way out. Should I take all of my pics zoomed all of the way and then crop them to zoom in on my son? I found when I did zoom in at all in the gym, anything that wasn't nailed down still was blurry. Thank you!
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Old Mar 29, 2010, 2:13 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by akmontgomery View Post
... I found when I did zoom in at all in the gym, anything that wasn't nailed down still was blurry.
I assume you are seeing motion blur - the result of to slow a shutter speed.

I's strongly suggest getting an EXIF viewer (likely one came with your camera) so you can tell what settings you were using. Was there motion blur from having to long a shutter speed? Shake in part due to the same? Lots of noise from to high an ISO? To shallow/deep a depth of field from to wide/narrow an f/stop?

Last edited by BillDrew; Mar 29, 2010 at 6:13 PM. Reason: spelling/grammar
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Old Mar 29, 2010, 2:48 PM   #3
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There are three factors that affect exposure:
  • Aperture - The amount of light that passes through the lens to the image sensor.
  • Shutter Speed - The length of time the image sensor is exposed to light.
  • ISO - The sensitivity of the image sensor to light.
If you want to shoot sports/action, you need fast shutter speeds, which means you need to use larger apertures and higher IOSs to compensate. The S90 has a large aperture (f/2.0) at it's shortest focal length, but it's pretty short, and it gets dim fast as you zoom. You can shoot with a short focal length, but you'd have to crop a whole lot to make up for it, and you'd lose a lot of sharpness from that.

As nice as the S90 is, I just don't think it's good enough to do what you want to do. Taking sports/action shots indoors is tough when you have the right equipment.
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
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Old Mar 29, 2010, 3:22 PM   #4
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Default Anything other than an SLR?

Is there any camera that you can recommend that would give me acceptable results without having to go to an SLR? I am reading Bryan Peterson's books right now and trying to grasp all these concepts. It's a little frustrating trying to learn and I really appreciate all of your help.
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Old Apr 3, 2010, 12:46 PM   #5
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Ideally, what you need for the kind of photos you are discussing is a DSLR camera with a powerful external flash unit and a very fast, long zoom lens. However, it might be much more appropriate and cost effective to explore what you can do with your S-90.

An operational comment: Your S-90 is SLOWEST when it is fully zoom out, NOT the fastest.

There are two simple things that you can do with your S-90:

(1) Zoom with your feet. That means move in closer to your subject so you can get the photo that you really desire. You should attempt to reduce zooming and cropping. If you are within 10 to 12 feet (measured from Camera to subject) then the flash on your S-90 will provide sufficient light so that your shutter speed is higher (higher shutter speed=less motion blur) and you will not have to reduce the image quality by excessive cropping.

(2) If you prefer to stand back you will need a good super zoom, such as the Panasonic FZ-35 (18X optical zoom) or the Sony HX-1 (20X optical zoom) that will allow you to zoom in on your distant subject, along with a powerful slave flash like the Canon HF-1 that will project the needed light on to your distant subject.

Sarah Joyce
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