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Old Jun 11, 2005, 11:14 PM   #1
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I am seeking advice on two issues. If anyone knows what I am doing wrong, please help.
Issue #1 Quite often use my Z3 for action shot of sporting events, children playing, etc. I have pretty good success outside on sunny days, but I have had a lot of problems with indoor events like basketball and indoor soccer. Pictures are either very dark and/or blurred. Even if there seems to plenty of lighting, this seems to happen.

Issue #2 When zoomed in to take pictures of people on stage during programs, graduations, etc., pictures again are very dark and/ or blurred. I tried taking shots from the front row (about 10 feet away) to 3rd or 4th row back (maybe 15-20 feet). I tried it with flash and without flash. I also tried it on M, S, P, A and auto. Auto gave me a better shot, but still was not what I wanted. There seemed to be plenty of natural and artificial lighting in the room, and the pictures taken without the zoom seem fine. I have searched the manual for help, but became more confused. Not sure if my problem was exposure, white balance, ISO, shutter speed or what to do about it. I love the action and zoom that I can get outside, how do I get that inside? Please advise!!!javascript:emoticon(':sad:',%20'images/emoticons/icon_sad.gif')
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Old Jun 12, 2005, 2:51 AM   #2
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Hello there Nealy. Having owned used the Z3 for several months, I can say that I've just about explored the limits of this great little digicam. When it comes to taking pictures in low light, all digicams - even the higher end 8mp ones are quite limited in this. It's not about being indoors or outdoors. It's just that there is a minimum limit of light availability for these digicams to take an acceptable picture. Exposure is affected by several settings in your camera:

1) ISO (higher ISO- more sensitive to light and more noise)

2) Aperture: Bigger aperture=more light . Largest aperture in the Z3 is f/2.8 at full-wide and only f/4.5 at 12x optical zoom

3) Shutter speed: Faster speed=less light. For action shots, you generally want faster speeds (say 1/500 minimum) to stop action.

Both aperture opening and focal length (zoom) affect depth-of-focus. Generally-Larger apertures=less DOF; Longer focal lengths=Less DOF

If your really want to get to know the limits of the Z3, use it in Manual mode and try out changing these settings in different conditions. The option to view live histogram is a great help in determining wether your shot will come out over or under exposed. When shooting at less than optimum light conditions, I set my camera to ISO 200. With this I can get the same light (compared with ISO 100) at faster shutter speeds or smaller apertures. Pointless to use the Z3for low-light action shots, I discovered.

Like I said, the Z3 is a great little camera.Like any other camera, we just have to know its limits. If you want to see some of my Z3 pics, I've included some links below. Hope this helped.




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