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Old Nov 30, 2002, 5:26 PM   #41
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After reading this thread, I almost decided not to buy an Olympus C-4000. But for various reasons I did anyway. The following link will direct you to my first photos:

http://www.amenta.com/temp.html

Can some of you that are familiar with the kind of focusing problems being discussed here please let me know if my camera seems to suffer from the same defect?

Thank you very much!
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 3:32 AM   #42
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Hi Ted, from what my eyes see, let me comment on your pics: The first one shows out-of-focus portions, especially the evergreen trees in the foreground, and generally, most of the image, except for the top 20% of the mountains (above the tree line).
The 2nd photo is much clearer, but again, the sharpness increases as the distance increases and the mountain top is sharpest.
Your third pic doesn't enter into the focusing problems, because your subject fills your frame. The focusing problems most of us are having involves 'landscape' situations with fore-mid-and/or background objects that are not in focus.
Good luck, Blessings, Johnny...
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 5:32 AM   #43
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Ted,

Viewed at 1:1 your pics look fine to me. However, for a more searching test, I suggest you shoot some scenes in SHQ or TIFF and max. resolution: the 1024x768 mode does not resolve fine detail that well. After all, why buy a 4Mp camera if you only want to use 1Mp?

For general use, I think you'll get a better result at 1024x768 if you initially shoot a larger size and then resize down using software with a good resizing algorithm. I used to shoot at 1024x768, then I discovered that with a larger original image a) I got better prints, b) I could more easily crop unwanted material from the image and STILL end up with the size I wanted and c) when I got a monitor with 1280x960 resolution, the pics were still big enough to fill the screen. If you don't want to pay a lot of money for image-processing software, try Irfanview - it's freeware and as good as anything available for resizing and cropping.

Oh, and always keep the original image so that you can revert to it when your equipment improves or your expertise grows.

Your third pic looks sharp, but the lower resolution has brought out the "jaggies" on diagonals, and the high contrast of the subject has blown out some highlights. Look at the white woodwork just under the roofline. More than one user has suggested "tweaking" the C4000's contrast down to -3 or -4 and there is an interesting thread on dpreview today about the merits of reducing both contrast and sharpness settings to -5. This assumes you are going to do some work on the shot in Photoshop or PaintShop Pro or similar.

So far as the first pic is concerned: this is the only one where a substantial depth of field is needed to resolve both the foreground trees and the mountains in the background. At this resolution it's difficult to judge the foliage in the central pine (can a C4000 resolve a pine needle at 20 metres? - unfair question). However, the branches on the left look OK and they are a better test. I find that in P mode the C4000 tends to select a large aperture and a fast shutter speed. For scenes like this, it would be better to switch to Aperture priority and select a smaller aperture: smaller aperture (larger f number) = greater depth of field. The C4000 manual doesn't say much about depth of field I find the "AF Area" setting clunky and virtually unusable. It's worth finding out how DOF is affected by lens aperture, focal length and distance focused: it can be a tricky balancing act.

There is an odd vertical white streak on the first pic that does not appear on the second (aircraft trail?) and what appears to be a file corruption near the top of the third. I assume this is not on the original?

fenlander
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 8:33 AM   #44
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Hello there Ted,
I LIKE your pictures. Please can you tell if you used a tripod and did you have the sharpness set to default?
If only I got the results you have I would be very

Also, did you sharpen them more in software?

Regards,
David
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 9:39 AM   #45
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fenlander,

You seem to know the C-4000 well. I don't do a lot of post processing. What do you think the best settings for everyday shots in regards to sharpness,contrast and saturation would be or does it vary with one's particular camera?
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 12:04 PM   #46
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Pipeman,

I don't think there's any one answer to that: it depends on what you do with your pics after you take them. I mainly view my pics on screen, but I like to print a selection at anything from 6x4 to A4.

I post-process everything: about two thirds of the pics I take end up on the cutting room floor. The others all get adjusted to some extent. I generally use contrast -3 or -4, sharpness 0 to -2, saturation 0, but that's just my preference.

When I print I use Qimage and that adds some sharpening of its own. I shoot at 4Mp SHQ and create a reduced version with Irfanview for viewing on screen because the pic loads quicker and there's no degradation due to the viewer downsizing the picture.

I do think it's always worth using the highest quality the camera is capable of: you can always down-size. You can't do the opposite.

Just as an example, this is a pic I took in Bryce Canyon in October. It was taken in SHQ with contrast at -3, sharpness 0. I trimmed it in PaintShop Pro and increased the contrast and sharpness. It was then reduced to its present size (1024x766) in Irfanview using the Lanczos filter. I'll make this one a link as it's quite big - about 256Kb.

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/fenlander/bryce_1024.jpg

Bear in mind that this version was saved with the jpeg compression at 15 to reduce the file size. Normally I use 2.

Below are three clips. The first is from the original, unretouched file.
The second is post-processing, but at full size. The third is from the 1024x766 version, but I have re-enlarged it for comparison purposes so that it's about the same size as the other two versions.



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Old Dec 1, 2002, 10:20 PM   #47
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fenlander,
Since I purchased a c4000 that can focus at distance I thought that the images that I am now taking were much better....technically speaking,of course. However ,after viewing the images that you are photographing with the c4000,I see that I have much more to learn with the camera!! Your pics taken with this camera shows that you are a master with it and Illustrates just what can be done with the c4000! Sorta gives me something to shoot for .....so now I am enjoying myself learning how to capture images to the level that you have shown that these cameras are capable of producing.
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Old Dec 1, 2002, 10:32 PM   #48
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fenlander,

Thanks for the info. I have a lot to learn. I will try to have a work flow that fits my needs. You have shown a good example and given me ideas to work with.
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Old Dec 2, 2002, 12:31 PM   #49
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Thank you all for your feedback!

Macroangles,

Do you have any idea why the top of the mountains woulkd be more in focus than the bottom when they are both several miles away? It would seem to me that focal length should not be an issue in this case. And if there is something wrong with the camera, all pictures should suffer the same problem. No?

Fenlander,

I will try as you suggest and will post other examples latter in the week. That white streak is a jet trail, the second picture is looking at a different part of the mountain. Can you please say more about what you mean by "what appears to be a file corruption near the top of the third"? I do not understand.

David,

Thanks! No I did not use a tripod. I also, did not make any adjustments to the factory defaults and shot in P mode. I know that I have alot to learn about how to use this camera better. For now I was just trying to see if the camera was obviously defective or not.

Thanks again to all of you!
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Old Dec 2, 2002, 12:57 PM   #50
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Ted,

I meant this:



Nothing to do with the camera, I'm sure. Just an upload fault.

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