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Old Jun 19, 2005, 9:33 PM   #1
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Hi. New here. I have a Canon power shot a70, nice camera, but get blurred pictures, I'm sure because of my movement sometimes, and not always good color at night, inside. I bought a Nikon Coolpix 8700, great camera, due to viewfinder or lcd screen option, lens and options. However, it is very expensive, with accessories, etc. Any thoughts as to how I can improve on my techniques with the Canon 3.2, or is the best option to go with a higher end camera, like the Nikon? Sort of a nuance question. Any thoughts would be helpful. So glad I found this website and forum!
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Old Jun 19, 2005, 10:24 PM   #2
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I hope I am not misunderstanding, but you seem to have things to learn about photography, although I am still a novice(or so I consider myself), here are a few things which would be interesting for you to know.
I would think that the A70 should be able to give you good results and its not a new camera and specially not more megapixels which will make your pictures suddently turn out better.

There are certain rules of physics to respect in photography. And unless you get a camera that can take good pictures with high ISO, then you will find yourself facing the same problem. While with a camera with high ISO possibility, then u will simply delay those problems.

You need to understand how the shutter speed works and to check it when you take a picture, usually you'll be able to know if your picture will be blurry or not. The rule of thumbs for hand held shots is that shutter speed of your camera should be 1/focal length. In other words, with your A70 at wide angle, you should not use a shutter speed any slower than 1/35s(because of 35mmwhen you are hand holding the camera. For maximum telephoto it would be 1/105s(because of 105mm). Then you should also take in consideration the shutter speed versus the speed of the moving object(if it moves) and the closer you are to the minimum, the higher the risks of seeing your target move if he/she moves a lot.

Then, the next thing to consider is the aperture, aperture has a direct effect on the shutter speed. Aperture determines how wide the shutter will be opened, it is measured in a fraction like 1/aperture. So an aperture of F2.8 is giving a bigger opening than F8.0 since it means 1/2.8 vs 1/8.0. So that means u could try to reduce the shutter speed if you want to use a faster shutter speed.

The last thing to consider is the ISO sensibility. This is how sensible the sensor will be to the light. ISO 50 is less sensible than ISO 400, so it will take a slower shutter speed to let in more light with ISO 50. Why not always use ISO 400 ? Because of the noise, you want your picture to have the least noise possible and that is why you prefer to nearly always shoot at ISO 50.

Once you take those things into consideration, you will surely be able to control better your blurred shots.

As for the other thing, the bad colors at night, I would suggest that you use manual white balance in those circumstances. The camera is surely on auto white balance most of the time and that suits you specially for natural lighting. But with artificial lighting the camera may choose the wrong color as being white, thus changing all the colors. You can see that by, for example, setting white balance by pointing a green object instead of a white one. Then you photograph a white object, you will see a HUGE difference which would never be that bad because green and white really isn't similar, but it can be funny to make such experiment. So yeah, the different lighting are - I am not sure - producing light at different heat and that affects how the camera perveives the colors. So what you do is that you take something which is pure white and u set the white balance with it in the lighting which you will be shooting.
As you can see here is an example of how well(or bad) the A70 manages to have the proper white balance in different situations when set on the different settings available: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canona70/page12.asp

I hope I helped you and specially that I was expressing myself clearly.
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Old Jun 20, 2005, 11:42 AM   #3
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Thanks so much for the great info,Nicolas! I do usually use my cameras on automatic, and they do right well. I hope to continue to learn more about camera usage. You are right about the issue of one camera vs another. If I don't know how to use the basic one the higher end will present the same issues for me. Again, thanks. I do like both cameras.
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