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Old May 23, 2007, 11:15 PM   #11
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Hi,

I'm finding that there's no difference between auto and manual focus - either is as bad as the other.

Most of the time the camera is on Aperture Priority (I'm attempting to learn one setting at a time, so I've started on this one) - usually at f8.

Most of the time I'm on MF, because I'm most interested in manually focusing, but I've also tried AF on many occasions (the focus isn't any clearer on auto). Sometimes I use a combination of that autofocus button (the one on the same control as the MF/AF switch), to let the camera focus first, and then I manually focus it until I'm sure its as close to being in focus as I can get.

There have been a few times when it hasn't ever got to the yellow ring; sometimes it indicates that I need to turn the focus ring more in one direction, but it can't turn any more beyond where it already is (as in, the ring can still physically be turned, but it won't do anything).
Other times the yellow ring has appeared, but often it's not really in focus.

Now that I've got it working okay for high contrast shots, using the tripod and timer to make sure there's absolutely no camera shake, this has made a difference, but the normal daylight shots are still out of focus.
I took a photo last night of a tree without leaves quite a way in the distance, and as it looked almost black against a pinkish sunset, the focus was pretty good on that. Normal daylight settings are the problem I have yet to overcome.

I'll look into getting a program to keep the EXIF data in the next couple of days (I didn't realise that Flickr was stripping some info too).

Thanks so much for your help! I really appreciate it!
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Old May 23, 2007, 11:59 PM   #12
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This is a pretty good one - and it's free...

http://www.irfanview.com/

Before you take a shot, does the scene in your viewfinder appear to be in focus? Do you wear corrective lenses?

the Hun

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Old May 24, 2007, 12:51 AM   #13
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Oh thanks! I'm not sure if it's compatible with Apple computers though, but I'm sure there's something similar out there my computer can use. I'm going to look into this later tonight after work.

The viewfinder is also out of focus (I tend to use that over the LCD, since it's easier to see things properly). When I the photos are out of focus, the viewfinder is always out of focus too - so I know the photos are out of focus but often it's the best I can do.

No corrective lenses (no sight problems at all).

I've just re-shot the same pictures that I tested in the evening yesterday, now in daylight, and there's a huge difference in quality - the night ones with more contrast on the tree (with hardly any leaves - so not *too* detailed) in the distance are quite okay, whereas the daylight ones where the tree is orange against a blue sky (far less contrast) are less in focus. I'll post a couple of examples after I download a program tonight/tomorrow.
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Old May 24, 2007, 9:18 AM   #14
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I could be wrong, but I don't think IrfanView is compatible with your computer - sorry.

All things considered, if the image in the viewfinder is blurry, there's no chance the resultant photo will come out sharp. Now, to find out why...

Try this...put the camera on a tripod. Set up to take a picture of that telephone pole against the sky that you previously posted (bird nice, but optional). Put the camera in 'AUTO' mode. Put the camera in S-AF focus mode. Aim the camera at the center of the pole. Zoom in to the max. Depress the shutter button half way. Did you get a double 'beep' sound? Did the AF frame get smaller? Does the pole appear to be in focus? Fully depress the shutter release and review picture. Does the picture look sharp? Or, did you not get a double beep, and did you get a !AF symbol on your viewfinder screen? Either way, repeat the exercise with the camera zoomed half way. Any difference?

Assuming the shot came out good, take another pic by aiming at the center of the pole, again. Depress the shutter release half way. Now, while continuing to hold the shutter release half way, offset the camera so that the pole is off to the right of the viewfinder screen, and wires are visible in the center. Take a pic. Are the wires in focus?

Let me know.

the Hun


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