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Old Dec 29, 2003, 1:54 PM   #1
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Default recently bought optio 550 and don't understand it

I recently bought an optio 550 camera new. I bought from the reviews on this board about . I have looked at posted pics taken from the camera also, What I don't understand is the pics i take look like they were taken from a NO megapixel camera......let alone a 5. The awb is awful, the focus is terrrible, it will only focus when the flash is used, if I don't use the flash everything is a complete blurr....more like a smearing of colors. And the pics have absolutely no detail. I will post some when i get a chance I sure hope someone can help me on this.....I have used many digital cameras before, but have never had these problems. I am not knowledgable on AE, shutter speed, resolutions, lighting settings, sharpness, contrast, saturation, et c.....I know that I must be doing something wrong, because of all the positive reviews and the sample photos I have seen, this camera is supposed to take excellent quality pics. If I were to post some I know you would not believe they came from this camera. Is there any base settings I should use to start with, even with the camera picking everything in auto mode it is terrible both indoor and outdoor at every range.

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Old Jan 3, 2004, 10:13 AM   #2
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I'm sorry you are having so much trouble.
I just bought an Optio 450, like you I don't know much about apertures & f stops and I'm using it in the auto mode at the minute. Perhaps there is something wrong physically with your camera, you should be able to take great pics right away. I've had no problems and I'm thrilled with the 450. I do know there are issues with noise in low light shots with the 550, but that doesn't sound like your problem.

Can you post any of your pictures online?
I put a page up at http://www.ourtown.ca/pentax/pentax.html
that big photo is right from the camera - auto focus, auto white balance - I didn't do anything except zoom in.
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Old Jan 30, 2004, 5:59 AM   #3
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Hi bristolrat,
I have a pentax optio 33 wr and approx. the same problems as described above.
But I see from your sample pic on the web that, in my opinion, it seems a bit "grainy" (I understand from surfing on the web that all Pentax suffer from this). I can say this because my brother-in-law has a canon a70 which produces sharper images.
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Old Feb 1, 2004, 11:12 PM   #4
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If the camera is out of focus flash pictures are blurred as well. The camera is obviously focusing. That leaves motion blur.

Pay attention to the shutter speed in your LCD. At wide angle you need about 1/40 second and at full telephoto you need about 1/200 sec. Anything slower and you will get blur handheld.

At wide angle you have f2.8 and will get your 1/40 second or more in the shade on a sunny day or on most overcast days at a very useable ISO 100 or maybe even 64. You canít get that speed indoors except maybe in exceptionally bright light unless you go up to ISO 400. Then you get a lot of noise but can take the picture.

The f reduces to 4.6 at telephoto and you will have problems getting the 1/200 sec except in sunlight. No way you are going to take an indoors shot at telephoto without the flash.
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Old Feb 7, 2004, 10:28 PM   #5
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I,m wondering if you are holding the camera correctly, or if you are letting your fingers block the sensors on the camera. The Optio 550 will produce excellent images, IMHO second to none. Something is radically wrong for you to have the experience you describe. I would tkae the camera back, or contact your Pentax rep.
Once you set the dial on P, everything should fall into place, as far as WB, AE, and AF is concerned. My experience with the camera has been that the lens is a little too sharp and contrasty for "people pictures", but for anything else, you can't beat it.
I have used it in Europe, the Caribbean, and here in NYC.... all different weather conditions, and the results are excellent.
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Old Mar 23, 2004, 4:23 PM   #6
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I just uploaded my first batch of photos from the Optio 550, and they are HORRIBLE. I have a 3-year-old Olympus D-490 Zoom that blows it away. After all the reviews, I expected the clouds to part and the angels to sing.

The images are grainy - almost pixelated, on my computer screen. I can toggle between almost identical photos taken with the Olympus (1.8 megapixels) and my Optio 550 with 5 mpxls.

Someone suggested that it's possible to block the sensors - I can't imagine that's what I did.

Is it possible that you can set the resolution TOO HIGH for standard computer display? I am using a 256mb SD card, which on my Olympus gives me hundres of photos. With the current setting on the 550, I will get less than 200, and that tells me it's storing a lot more data per photo. Is it possible to shoot too much data?

What should my resolution and image quality be for standard com[uter (LCD) screens and photo prints at the local drugstore kiosk?
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