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Old Mar 1, 2003, 1:44 PM   #1
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Default Why are my pics out of focus??

I recently bought a D100 with a Nikor f:3.5-4.5D 28-105mm lens. Today I shot off about 25 pictures of a cardinal in my back yard. Took them from my window about 30 feet away. Was shooting handlheld at 1/500 sec, bracing my elbows on the window sill, so I thought it should be quite steady. All shots were focused directly on the bird.

To my dismay, all of the pictures of the birds were somewhat blurred! I don't know why. Below are a couple of examples of the shots, cropped to only show the birds, followed by a screen cap of the exif data (wish there was an easier way to capture and save this data!!)

Anyway, would appreciate comments, critiques, suggestions, etc. on how I can get sharper focused pictures.



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Old Mar 1, 2003, 3:51 PM   #2
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It doesn't look like you have this problem, but I'll mention it any ways. It has been reported a fair amount on other forums that I read that the D100 can suffer from a "back focus" problem.

What happes is that the camera clames that the subject is in focus, but in fact it isn't. The camera has actually focused behind the subject a little ways. I have not heard a solution to this.

Are those pictures only crops, or did you enlarge as well?
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Old Mar 3, 2003, 5:27 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply.

No, those are unretouched and unresized crops from the orginals. As can be seen from the exif data, the originals were 2240 x 1488. I did not want to waste a lot of bandwidth here, so I only cropped the area that I was interested in.

I took about 25 of these, all centered on the bird, some with spot metering, although I don't think that would affect the focus, but I tried it anyway. They were all out of focus. I figured that with a shutter speed of 1/500 sec, even if I had a bit of hand shake, that speed should not have shown it like this.

Furthermore, I took another hundred or so photos of people, with flash, the next day, and again, was very disappointed with the focus.. all seemed soft and lacked sharpness.

The reason I bought this model was because I was impressed seening examples of others' photos taken with this camera. Now I am wondering if there is a fault with the camera, the lense, or me!
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Old Mar 11, 2003, 4:17 PM   #4
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Paul,

I think I have the same problem here!!!
I even sold my 80-400 VR because I tought it was defective.

When I press the shutterbutton it looks like I have the subject in focus just right, but when I look at the pictures on my pc afterwards they look out off focus too.

Does anyone else had this problem with his/her D100??

Gerard
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Old Mar 11, 2003, 5:32 PM   #5
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nok85

If you have some example pictures with the problem that would help a lot. Of course, having sold the lens, I'm not sure how much it matters.

[ NOTE: I don't have this lens. I have read a lot about it because I'm interested in that focal length.]

The AF speed is really slow on that lens. Did you give it time to focus? I've heard it refered to as the slowest AF lens nikon sill makes. Don't know if its true, but clearly its really slow.

I've read that the 80-400VR takes a little while to settle down with the VR mechanism. If you took the picture too quick, that might have been it. Did yoiu try using it with VR disabled?

I've also read a lot of complains that it's soft at the longer ranges... but quality does differ a lot between samples on this one (very un-nikon like.) I've seen good pictures with it, and then some posts with "this is the best I can do, and it sucks. I'm selling it."

YMMV,

Eric
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Old Mar 12, 2003, 4:17 PM   #6
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Here are some examples made with my 70-200 VR:

Birds looked razorsharp in viewfinder, enough light, fast shutterspeeds, but still a little off-focus.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14229970
http://www.pbase.com/image/14231010
http://www.pbase.com/image/14231011

What do you think?? backfocus problem or is it just me??
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Old Mar 12, 2003, 11:13 PM   #7
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From looking at the second picture, I'd say that it is. The woodpecker isn't in focus, but the tree to the right (which looks to be further away than the woodpecker) is in focus.

The first one is harder to tell. I think the wooden post is in focus better focus, but its hard to tell (at least to me.)

The third one is also hard. I really can't see anywhere which looks in focus. That is normally a *very* sharp lens, I am surprised. I don't know how sharp it is supposed to be at F4... but I'd expect much better than this (especially for the money.)


If it's under warentee, I believe this should be covered and is fixable. This only a guess. I'd do some google searching on something like "Back focus D100" or something and see if you can find others talking about what they did. Or check out dpreview.com, their forum has had a lot of talk about this in the past. Just use their search on the "Nikon SLR forum" and I'm sure you'll get tons of info.

BTW, this problem should be happening with basically any lens. So if it's only a problem with this one I'd consider swapping it with another. I'm sure they are churning this out as fast as possible... so some turkeys could have gotten through Quality Control.

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Old Mar 13, 2003, 6:53 AM   #8
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I have had the same problem with my 80-400 and with my 24-85.
With the 24-85 it's harder to tell because the DOF is different.

The 70-200 VR should be Razorsharp at f4.

I suppose the Cam is toast ;-)
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Old Mar 13, 2003, 5:16 PM   #9
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Here are some pictures taken with the 70-200 VR which are pretty nice I think. Give this lens a lot of light and it realy is a beast 8)

http://www.pbase.com/image/14264767
http://www.pbase.com/image/14264768
http://www.pbase.com/image/14264769
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Old Mar 13, 2003, 11:35 PM   #10
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nok85

I wouldn't say "toast" because it's fixable. But it could cost money if it isn't under waranty. And in some posts I've heard that Nikon doesn't officially acnolage the problem. But I'd think this is fixable!

I'd love to that that new VR lens. Sigh.

That first one looks quite sharp and in proper focus. I'm not sure what the problem is with the others. This is much better than that other batch of photos.
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