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Old Aug 28, 2005, 6:24 PM   #1
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Has anyone else encountered any image quality issues with the V550? I have had the camera for about a week, and the skin tones on our two children are just terrible, particularly on inside shots. I have printed the photos at home, and at a processor, but print quality does appear to be the issue, as they both came out bad. In a couple of shots, my one sons skin looked like something out of a wax museum. In other shots, where my child was wearing a purple outfit, it came out blue.

On my indoor shots, I also rarely get the "blur indicator" to show green, for a good shot after a picture is taken. 95% get either a yellow or red warning.

I have played with the different preset functions, as well as using the "auto" feature. I had previously used an old DX3900 that took much better quality photos. I am wondering if it is a problem with this particular camera, or if I just got a bad one from Kodak. (If I go with another camera, I was considering the Canon SD400 or SD450).

Any help would be appreciated.
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Old Aug 28, 2005, 11:34 PM   #2
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I suppose your problem is lack of colors (wax surface doesn't have many color/brightness variations). This may be caused by improper exposure or insufficient lighting.

Under enough lighting conditions, my subjects skins are just perfect, both on LCD monitors (haven't tried CRT), and printed (by external printing shops). Of course, in dark rooms and if I don't want to flash, pictures may show lack of colors.

Might be Kodak is good to we "yellowish people", not so pale

Have you tried to play around with:

Menu > ColorMode > HighColor

and

Menu > Sharpness > High



Could you post some problem pictures, with extracting their EXIF values (or Metadata as some image editors call it)? E.g. ISO, shutter speed, aperture ...etc.

Or you may find some better scene/exposure conditions by looking at the "histogram" (press up-cursor 2 times in shooting mode). A "flat" histogram implies a good color saturation.


Or if your pictures are "over-exposed", some darker details might be lost. Try tune down the EV compensation (left-cursor) to e.g. -0.3 or -0.7.
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 6:15 AM   #3
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"...On my indoor shots, I also rarely get the "blur indicator" to show green, for a good shot after a picture is taken. 95% get either a yellow or red warning...."

That's a common problem with all DC in insufficient lighting conditons (unless it's got a very good optical stabilization).

Either you increase the ISO so the exposure time will be shorten to avoid blurring due to vibration, or you grip the DC (or use tripod) more firmly.

Kodak is just nice to give your the yellow or red warnings (other DC may just silently get pass the problem to produce blurred images w/o giving you any warnings).


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Old Aug 29, 2005, 9:02 AM   #4
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Potato - thanks for your help. Attached is a picture in particular that we were diappointed in. It does not show up as poor on our screen, as it did when processed (and then printed at home on our Canon i560s printer). The skin tones were extremely waxy looking. They came out looking pretty poor on a number of our shots, again, particularly on the indoor shots.

I could extract the file information, so I copied the properties down

Shutter: 1/60sec
Ap: f2.80
Focal Length: 36mm
ISO: 80
Flash: fire / auto
Exposure: normal

Thanks again for your assistance.
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 9:24 AM   #5
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michdog wrote:
Quote:
It does not show up as poor on our screen, as it did when processed (and then printed at home on our Canon i560s printer). The skin tones were extremely waxy looking.
The file number of your photo is very much like the file number the camera would assign. But, if this is the original file, you have extreme JPEG artifacts in it -- very blocky, very diminished in color scope. It might look okay reduced on-screen, but your printer will not be able to inject any more picture information than what's in the file sent to it-- and there is not much here.

What processing did you do? If you saved multiple times, each time as a JPEG, your picture quality will deteriorate very quickly.

If you didn't do multiple saves, possibly you have your camera set at the lowest quality, at low resolution? I'm not familiar with your camera, but Kodak's color and picture defaults are generally right on for pix of kids.

Dave
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 9:33 AM   #6
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Dve - The file size has been reduced here from 912KB to 210KB in order for it be able to uploaded onto this forum. I did not alter the original photo at all before being printed, so it was processed with the original file. A number of our photos had this "waxy" appearance to them. I checked the lens, and it appeared to be clean. The camera is set at the highest setting with a 5MP size.

Thanks
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 9:41 AM   #7
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Agh - and I thought maybe I had an easy answer...

There might be something going on with your flash... it might be a bit strong, which is not the usual problem with on-camera flash.

Maybe try taking some indoor pix in similar circumstances with my favorite flash-throttling solution: multiple (at least 4) layers 1of the fairly thick Scotch satin finish GiftWrap Tape.

I've even gone over the tape with a black Sharpie (off the camera, please -- it bleeds through) to bring the light under control. But that's for macro shots, where the on-camera flash is way too strong.

Dave
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 3:06 PM   #8
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michdog - do any of Steve's sample photos for the V550 show the same problem?

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2005_...0_samples.html
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Old Aug 29, 2005, 3:12 PM   #9
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Hi Dave,
No, not noticing any of the issues on his pics. He only had one inside picture of a person, and the photo / skin tones looked completely fine to me.

Thanks

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Old Aug 29, 2005, 3:27 PM   #10
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In whatever editing (or print preparation) software you're using, could you crop (out of one of the untouched camera files) one of your problem photos to a region that takes only 250k, andillustrates what you mean?

Depending on subject, you should be able to get to nearly 1000 x 800 pixels, saved as 80% quality (20% compression / "good quality" depending on how your software couches it).

Safety factor: be sure to save it with a new file name so you don't lose the original.

Dave
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