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Old Mar 23, 2007, 8:20 AM   #11
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Definately seems a bit soft to me. I can't but wonder if it was doing multi-zone focus & simply got the best average it could = it didn't really focus on anything specific.

You could test the AF system indoor (ain't spring great it interrupts the cold with rain....rain...rain :-)). Simply pick something across the room & shoot a flash shot. Watch where the AF is focusing (green box/boxes) or turn it to center to make sure it's focusing on that object. If the pic is clear then you know the AF is working.

Still think it should be a tad sharper, unfortunately I deleted my test shots.....but....there's a thread http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=11that has some pics. They're at the long end of the zoom but they're pretty sharp (taken through a window & they're shrunk down for photobucket).

From what I've read @ some sites Kodak is pretty good about making things right.
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Old Mar 28, 2007, 4:59 PM   #12
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The first image is blurry due to camera movement (slow shutter as mentioned). The other shot of a deck is not crack sharp, but I am not sure of the mode you were in or how it was held.

Actually, there could be many reasons why the pictures seem a bit soft and out of focus. To perform a more meaningful test,I suggest you place the camera on a table or other stable surface and use the Self-Timer feature. This will eliminate any possible camera shake while the picture is taken.

Asyou are about to take a picture while holding the camera, a good stance is important in getting a good picture. Stand with your legs about two feet apart with your arms close to your sides. Hold the camera comfortably, but in a way that is not blocking the flash or the meter of the camera. If you are going to take a picture using the viewfinder, keep this stance and bring the camera gently to your forehead. View the image with both eyes openif your using theEVFand compose the picture. When you are ready to snap the shutter, press the shutter half way to set the camera mechanics for exposure. When ready to capture the image, do it slowly, yet deliberately, avoiding any jerky motions. Note: Digital cameras take just a split second longer to capture the picture so keep your position for just a second longer than you would with a film camera. Your camera is fast but it is still a good idea to do this, it will help you prevent blurring due to removing the camera from the picture taking stance too soon.

If you are going to use the view-screen to preview your composition, use the same techniques as noted, but do not hold the camera to your forehead. It will be a bit more difficult to keep a good stance, as you will not have the option of steadying the camera against your forehead. So, to limit blur, lean against a wall, rest your elbows, or use some other object, if possible. Try to rest your arms on something in front of you. The object here, is to make sure you have the support to steady the camera and prevent camera movement during exposure.

If the images are clear, and sharp, using the self timer, consider this process each time you take a picture. It will soon become second nature to you. If this does not help,share 2-3 sample images, directly from the camera without editing. This way we will be ableanalyze them better.

Talk to you soon,

Ron Baird
Eastman Kodak Company

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Old Mar 28, 2007, 10:42 PM   #13
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We finally had some sun today - yeah spring! I was able to try Bailey59's testing protocol and got good sharpness both times.

I am resizing these down to 640 x 480 for easy posting but performing no further editing. I do have the ability to host them fullsize elsewhere. Would there be advantages in that?

I have reasonably decent picture taking stance - I was on the rifle team in college and try to apply those lessons learned for bracing and breathing with a standing shot- but I certainly could be falling prey to the shutter lag! I'll watch that, plus play with a self timer and a tripod.

I also have taken the majority of my shots in completely lazyauto mode and, based on what I'm learning here, think that perhaps I may be able to address some of my issues by working in PASM mode instead and selecting settings appropriately. I'll have to dredge up that high school photography class knowledge!

We're going to the San Juans next week for spring break - it'll be a good test lab time. Thanks again!

Sun shot:

Shade shot:

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Old Mar 29, 2007, 9:00 AM   #14
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They look pretty good to me (& hurray for the sunshine - lol).

If you view them full screen (actual pixels) that statue should be sharp, it looks like it is in the pictures.

I'd say I shoot 90% of my stuff in "P". Allows me to see the shutter speed & make changes accordingly. For example if I'm @ ISO 80 & see 1/25th I know the odds are low I'll get the shot. Dial it up to 200 & I should be around 1/100th = high odds of getting the shot.

From there it's just a matter of bracketing the exposure under tough lighting conditions, adjusting the focus & metering zones = good to go.

In truth the only time I use aperature or shutter priority is when I'm doing something specific like controlling depth of field.

Enjoy the trip! (and don't forget to post some pics when you get back :-) )

EDIT - forgot to mention, that 1st pic is why I like Kodak cameras - the colors are excellent. The rust & the grass look really good.

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Old Mar 29, 2007, 9:18 AM   #15
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Just a few comments. Both shots were taken at full wide angle which is not a really hard test of the auto-focus but it does appear to be working as the sculpture appears sharp withprogressively decreasein sharpness as objects move away from that plane. Thebright light photo exposure was [email protected]/640 and in that photo we see the increased DOF due to stopping the lens down one stop and perhaps a bit of sharpening from improved lens performance at f4. The overcast exposure was [email protected]/40. Motion blur, even without IS should not have been much of an issue at the focal length of 35mm equiv and I don't think it was. The principle differences between the two photos was f4 vs. f2.8 with its attendant effects on DOF and inherent differences in lens performance between f4 and f2.8. I believe both shots are within normal expectations but people will more likely respond to the bright sunlit picture because of the higher lighting contrast.

It appears that the exposure program in auto mode is biased toward shutter speed. That is it increases shutter speed until another increase would put it over the 1/1000 limit and then it begin stopping down the lens. That may be an over simplification but it should give you a feel for what's happening in daylight photos.

Both photos produced an increased appearance of sharpness with IrfanViews sharpness filter. You might want to experiment with changing the cameras own filter setting to High for non-people photos. Most people over the age of 10 don't care for High sharpness.
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