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Old Jun 10, 2010, 5:04 PM   #1
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Default A different technique for P&S indoor shooting

I posted this on a different website but am posting it here to get opinions from folks who may not visit that website.

Had a thought about a different technique for P&S indoor shooting and would like your pros and cons on it. This technique is for folks who don’t mind doing post processing to obtain the best indoor picture quality. If nothing else, it might be interesting to discuss.

BACKGROUND INFO:
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Factor-1 is that all P&S cameras now have zoom lenses. Typical zoom aperture ranges are from about F3 at wide to F5+ at full zoom. Shooting at full wide allows the most amount of light to hit the sensor.

Factor-2 is the insane megapixel race that the manufacturers are engaged in. We’re stuck with that but since that’s a fact, why not use it to our advantage?


THE WIDE INDOOR SHOOTING TECHNIQUE:
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Taking the two factors above into consideration, what if all “typical” indoor shots are taken at full wide and never zoom when shooting those indoor shots? Full wide will allow the maximum amount of light to hit the sensor which should result in the lowest ISO necessary, least amount of noise with consequently the least amount of camera noise reduction. This should result in the best quality low light image (including flash) that the camera is capable of producing.

Step-2 is to take advantage of the high megapixels and do all zooming in post by cropping. All that is needed for 4x6 inch prints is 2.88 MP and for 5x7 inch prints is 3.15 MP (at 300 dpi). So cropping 10+ MP images down to the appropriate MP will not result in any image degradation.

The cropped image may need some exposure improvement but usually that can be just one click in Photoshop or similar image editing software. If spot or center weighted metering is used and the half-press, reframe technique is used then even exposure improvement may not be necessary.

What do you think?
Sky

Last edited by skylark; Jun 11, 2010 at 4:22 AM. Reason: Made minor corrections.
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Old Jun 10, 2010, 7:24 PM   #2
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Skylark-

The theory sounds good. Any photo samples or a link to your original posting elsewhere.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jun 10, 2010, 7:50 PM   #3
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Skylark-

The theory sounds good. Any photo samples or a link to your original posting elsewhere.

Sarah Joyce
Hi Sarah,

No photo samples yet since the idea just surfaced and I posted it right away to see if others could see flaws in it. If they do, it could save some needless testing.

I also posted it in the Open Talk forum in DPreview here:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...hread=35544238

Thanks for your input,
Sky
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Old Jun 10, 2010, 9:09 PM   #4
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Why not zoom with your feet and just get physically closer?? If you're already at your widest, just moving closer to the subject will allow you to do less cropping. Get the composition right in camera and you have more flexibility in the future. If you want more than 4x6 prints, excessive cropping will prevent you from getting good quality. I'm not a big fan of throwing away pixels when you crop.
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Old Jun 10, 2010, 9:37 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by rjseeney View Post
Why not zoom with your feet and just get physically closer?? If you're already at your widest, just moving closer to the subject will allow you to do less cropping. Get the composition right in camera and you have more flexibility in the future. If you want more than 4x6 prints, excessive cropping will prevent you from getting good quality. I'm not a big fan of throwing away pixels when you crop.

I'm thinking of photos taken at events where moving closer would be inconsiderate or embarrassing.

For example at a Christmas party at a friend's home where Santa is giving each kid a present and letting him/her sit on his lap. Moving closer for every shot and blocking the view and shooting of the other guests would be quite inconsiderate. Zooming in for the best framing would be optimum but the amount of light allowed into the camera quickly drops off with more zoom.

Another example is at a wedding. It would not be kosher to move up closer to the couple during the ceremony but non flash shots could be taken from one's seat. --- Or at the reception when the event is being recorded by a videographer. It would be unfair to the couple for one to insert themself into the video to get the best framed shot.

There are multitudes of situations where one is relegated to shooting from a distance indoors.

Thanks much for your input. I appreciate every thought,
Sky

Last edited by skylark; Jun 11, 2010 at 4:29 AM.
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Old Jun 11, 2010, 12:33 PM   #6
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Sky-

A Slave Flash would provide the extra light needed and you could stay right where you are and zoom as required.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jun 11, 2010, 1:49 PM   #7
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Sky-

A Slave Flash would provide the extra light needed and you could stay right where you are and zoom as required.

Sarah Joyce
You're so right Sarah. In fact I bought an optical slave trigger for my FL50 flash after reading about your success using slave flashes with your P&S'. It worked well with the ZS7 that we had, especially in bounce mode, though I'll need to tailor the camera settings after I settle on a new P&S for my wife. Her camera, my toy .

I love experimenting with cameras but my wife won't do it. She only wants to take it out of her purse, turn it on and press the shutter. Hence my search for ways to squeeze the best possible indoor picture quality from the modern, too small sensor, insanely high megapixel, NR heaven, compact P&S cameras that can fit in her small purse.

Thanks,
Sky

Last edited by skylark; Jun 11, 2010 at 2:03 PM.
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