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Old Sep 30, 2005, 6:59 PM   #1
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Hi, I have recently purchased a Canon 20D and I am finding a lot of my pictures are out of focus. The attached photo has the following settings:

P Mode

1/80 F5.0

ISO 200

70-300mm Sigma lens

Focal Length 214.0

I am also finding if I take a group photo of people,some of the people are blurry,some are not. In others ,if someone is standing slightly behind another,the person at the rear is blurred. I am new to Digital SLR and any help appreciated.
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Old Sep 30, 2005, 9:58 PM   #2
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for large group shots, try setting you camera to A-DEP. this shoud try to bring everyone into focus by setting a large depth of field. Otherwise make sure your auto focus point is set to the center point for normal shots. At the longer focal lengths camera shake can also come into play, a tripod of monopod will do wonders even though they sometimes can be a hassel. Or try to brace yourself or the cameraagainstsomething solid to steady it.
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Old Sep 30, 2005, 11:20 PM   #3
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First try at a DSLR :-).
Search about there are quite a few posts that meniton that all images from a DSLR probably require some post processing.
The DSLR's do not automatically sharpen and pump up the color like the point & shoots.

I applied a few steps to your image (small jpg, not my normal raw's so not much to work with:blah

Steps applied in PS CS2
Action: defog
neatimage
unsharp to L channel
Action: basicWorkFlow including dropping back the background
shadow/highlight adjust


For the group shots your F stop is probably not big enough for a large enough DOF with a long lens Try DOFMaster to figure out what would be in focus at a given focal length, f-stop and distance.



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Old Sep 30, 2005, 11:32 PM   #4
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Um, not to sound like a jerk, but are you using autofocus? If so, is it turned on?
Also, a lot of entry level lenses can have some serious quality control issues, so you may want to have it checked out to make sure your lens is ok!
Otherwise, do a little reading on how shutter speed and aperture (f/stop) affect your images. Your problem with some people being a little blurry is affected by whats called 'depth of field' A little book reading can certianly go a long way!
Good luck with your 20D. I know you will love it as you learn it better.
David
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Old Oct 1, 2005, 4:12 PM   #5
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Did you take this shot handheld?? Look at your photo settings! I quessing your new user on Dsrl

I think this photo has camera shake caused by too slow shutter speed (1/80). Remember when your shooting using long focal lengths you should keep your shutter speed fast enought. etc. 1/250

Good rule to calculate minimum shutter speed to avoud camera shake when not using tripot is to multiply your focal length by 1.6

etc.

Focal length 218mm (218 X 1.6 = 1/348 sec shutter speed)
Focal length 70mm (70 X 1.6 = 1/112 sec shutter speed)

When your shooting group of peoples you should set your camera for larger depth of field pumping up the F number ... If your shutter speed goes too slow... turn up your ISO
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Old Oct 1, 2005, 11:11 PM   #6
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I agree, 1/80s is way too slow for handheld at 214mm. It's probably also too slow for taking a picture of a bird that could possibly move on you.

Until you get used to your camera and get steadier with your hand-held technique, use the 1/(focal length x 1.6) rule of thumb that Bache mentioned. Note, that this is just to prevent blurred photos from camera shake, not from subject movement. If the bird could suddenly move, I would probably use something like 1/500s.

For candid shots of people, I use a minimum of 1/250s, even at 24mm. Especially for kids since they always seem to have the jitters.
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Old Oct 3, 2005, 2:40 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the help.Things seem a lot clearer now. Like I said, I am new to DSLR photography.

Gandalf065, you don't sound like a jerk,but I am using auto focus, but how do you turn it on?

I got a new Manfrotto tripod for my birthday today,so I'm sure I'll put it to good use. Once again, thanks for the help.
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Old Oct 3, 2005, 8:01 AM   #8
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Hey thanks for the understanding. I just wanted to make sure that you had your autofocus turned on.
I tend to agree with Bache and the other guys... 1/80 is too slow for handheld at 218mm, unless you are steady as a rock!
Best hopes for you in the future. Enjoy your 20D!
David
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