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Old Apr 22, 2011, 11:35 AM   #1
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Default HS10 struggling with close-ups and macro focus

I've just started using my HS10 and am struggling to get focus for close-ups or when in macro mode. I find the manual confusing, or maybe I'm just losing grey matter as I get older!
Let's use the common example of photographing a bee on a flower. You can't get too close with the camera or you disturb the subject. So you may have a shooting distance of, say, 12inches. Whether in Auto or SRAuto more I have the same difficulties - I can't get it focused in non-macro mode (using manual or autofocus) and I can't get it focused in macro mode (using manual or autofocus) unless I pull way back from the subject and then lose any close-up shots. If I half-press the shutter button, I can see the autofocus go from blurred to focused then to blurred again, but my shots are all blurred.
I am hand-holding the camera, which is how I aim to use it in all cases, carrying a tripod doesn't exactly go with a walk in the country or one of those occasions when you take the camera "just in case". So I understand that some shake might affect the focus - I do get the blur/camera shake symbol and sometimes !AF symbol for failure to focus - even at relatively low levels of zoom. However, I'd had no similar problems with my old Olympus when zooming in macro modes. I've been using Auto or SR Auto in order to let the camera make the most appropriate settings choices, so that I could concentrate on the focus. I really need to master this, since I often take such close-up shots, it's something I could do with my older, cheaper, simpler camera but not yet with my HS10.

I'd appreciate help from those who have gone before.
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Old Apr 22, 2011, 1:05 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by alan81 View Post
I've just started using my HS10 and am struggling to get focus for close-ups or when in macro mode. I find the manual confusing, or maybe I'm just losing grey matter as I get older!
Let's use the common example of photographing a bee on a flower. You can't get too close with the camera or you disturb the subject. So you may have a shooting distance of, say, 12inches. Whether in Auto or SRAuto more I have the same difficulties - I can't get it focused in non-macro mode (using manual or autofocus) and I can't get it focused in macro mode (using manual or autofocus) unless I pull way back from the subject and then lose any close-up shots. If I half-press the shutter button, I can see the autofocus go from blurred to focused then to blurred again, but my shots are all blurred.
I am hand-holding the camera, which is how I aim to use it in all cases, carrying a tripod doesn't exactly go with a walk in the country or one of those occasions when you take the camera "just in case". So I understand that some shake might affect the focus - I do get the blur/camera shake symbol and sometimes !AF symbol for failure to focus - even at relatively low levels of zoom. However, I'd had no similar problems with my old Olympus when zooming in macro modes. I've been using Auto or SR Auto in order to let the camera make the most appropriate settings choices, so that I could concentrate on the focus. I really need to master this, since I often take such close-up shots, it's something I could do with my older, cheaper, simpler camera but not yet with my HS10.

I'd appreciate help from those who have gone before.
You might want to back off with the camera a little bit more. Play with distance from the subject without zoom then move out and zoom in. SRAuto is good but not perfect. It's a little tricky at first but, you'll get used to it. Once you do, you'll be ready for a Raynox DCR-150 or 250!
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Old Apr 22, 2011, 3:26 PM   #3
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Gary, thanks for the input. Clearly, I need more practice to develop the right technique. BTW: some of the close-up/macro shots in your Shutterfly gallery are just the type of thing I'm after. I'll get there!
Regards - Alan
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Old Apr 22, 2011, 4:47 PM   #4
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Gary, thanks for the input. Clearly, I need more practice to develop the right technique. BTW: some of the close-up/macro shots in your Shutterfly gallery are just the type of thing I'm after. I'll get there!
Regards - Alan
Shutterfly? I haven't been on there in a long time. I host my own gallery now.

The HS-10 takes a little getting-used-to, Alan. It's not your typical bridge camera. But, with practice and not being afraid to experiment, you'll get it down.
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Last edited by gjtoth; Apr 22, 2011 at 4:49 PM.
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Old Apr 22, 2011, 9:56 PM   #5
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G'day Alan

Following on from above ~ try some practice in your kitchen ... bees move too quickly
Try
1- zoom to about 5x ... rock your body/camera back/forward onto a subject and see its focus distance
2- zoom to 10x & 15x ... do the same & check how the camera to subject distance changes as the zoom changes

This will give you a better handle on your camera to subject distances per each zoom setting

Hope this helps ...
Regards, Phil
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