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Old Jan 3, 2006, 9:10 PM   #1
Mav
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Hi, i owna Olympus C-720 UZ Digital Camera and i'm now experiencing a focus problem, when i press the shoot button to the middle to have it focus what i want, it focus wright for one moment and when it stabilizes the focus it stays blurry! It only focus fine on very close objects or in some levels of zoom! Is there any service menu i can access to calibrate the focus or any other way of doing this or will it have to go to repair? Sorry for my bad english!

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style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Thanks!
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Old Jan 4, 2006, 2:43 PM   #2
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Well, first of all, I wouldn't assume that it's an Autofocus calibration problem.

You could be doing something wrong, or have a setting impact your Autofocus.

For example, if you're in low light (and a well lit interior is low light to a camera), it's harder for a camera to "see" to focus.

So, if your subject doesn't have enough contrast, the camera may not be able to lock on. Are you getting AF lock?

When you half press the shutter button, it should either lock or not. Most models will have a steady light telling you when it locks, and a blinking light when it doesn't. Some even use different colors. You'd need to check the manual for your camera.

If Autofocus is not locking, it may be due to lighting and subject contrast.

Your focal length (zoom settings) will also impact Autofocus speed and accuracy.

For example, at longer focal lengths, you've got more camera shake (it's magnified as more optical zoom is used). This can make it harder for the camera to recognize contrast in a subject for Autofocus purposes. Also, with most models, lenses are not as bright at longer focal lengths (again, impacting a camera's ability to see).

The other problem you may be experiencing is closest focus distance. Check your camera's specificiations for focus distance. It's probably different, depending on how much optical zoom you're using.

A setting problem could also be at fault (for example, leaving it in Macro mode).

Most manufacturers are not going to divulge the key combinations needed to enter hidden service menus. Also, they can be dangerous to use, especially AF calibration.

For example, I've got a little Konica KD-510z with a hidden service menu, and if you accidently enter it's AF calibration menu, it will begin a calibration without any further prompts or notice. This can really mess up your camera, because it's expecting a test target at a specific focus distance in order to peform the calibration.

If the test target isn't there, at the distance it expects it, with your camera properly positioned on a stable tripod, your camera's AF is going to be really messed up (and I know this from personal experience). ;-)


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Old Jan 4, 2006, 4:25 PM   #3
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Hi, thanks for the response! For example, using the camera in full automatic, when half pressing the button, the focus locks but the image is not sharp, it's kind of blurry! If i just touch the shooter button a bit withut having it to lock the focus, the image stays sharp, it only stays blurry when it locks! If i try to focus something that is really close, then i can make it to focus! If i try take a outside daily picture with good ilumination to a landscape for example, it never focus, it locks but the image will be terrible! That's why i was asking for the menu, but if it's that hard too, i'll have to send it to Olympus

Thanks!
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Old Jan 4, 2006, 7:45 PM   #4
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Are you sure you don't have the focus mode set to Macro?

If so, it's only going to focus properly at closer distances.

The middle button with the flower icon controls this, and allows you to cycle between Spot Metering, Macro Focus, Macro Focus with Spot Metering, or Normal focus modes.

Leaving it in one of the Macro modes could be causing your problems.

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Old Jan 4, 2006, 8:41 PM   #5
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No it's on normal focus mode

This is what i normally get:





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Old Jan 4, 2006, 8:59 PM   #6
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Any add on lenses or filters? That could impact it.

Are you sure you're not seeing blur from camera shake or subject movement versus a focus issue?

I'd try resetting your camera to factory defaults, just to make sure a setting isn't the issue.

One way is to go under your Setup menus, and make sure the "All Reset" menu choice is turned ON (if so, it resets your camera settings each time the camera is turned off).


Also, are you sure you're not just seeing a problem in the camera's viewfinder? I'd make sure the diopter adjustment is correct (little wheel by your viewfinder), and check the images on a PC screen for sharpness versus the camera's viewfinder or LCD.

You may also want to post an example of an image so we can tell what it's doing.

If you can downsize an image using something like irfanview (downloadable from http://www.irfanview.com ), we can see the camera settings used. After loading an image, select IMAGE, RESIZE/RESAMPLE. Then, resize it to around 640 pixels wide for posting here in the forum. Use the "Save As" menu choice and give it a new filename as not to overwrite your original.

You'll see a way to attach an image to a forum post when you are typing one (a Browse Button will be underneath the box you are typing in).

Or, if you have a way to post a full size image somewhere else, we can look at the problem in greater detail (our forums won't allow larger images, or a file size exceeding around 248KB).

It's possible that you have an AF calibtration issue. But, they're pretty rare with non-DSLR models (since the AF sensor is the CCD). So, I think we should rule out other causes for your out of focus images before jumping to any conclusions.

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Old Jan 4, 2006, 9:05 PM   #7
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Well i posted a reduced picture,and yes, i already made a reset all,and this one is almost the best i get:


style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Oh and the camerais pretty standard, no add lenses or anything else, just how it came out of the box.


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Old Jan 4, 2006, 9:11 PM   #8
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And here is another one resized with that program:


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Old Jan 4, 2006, 9:33 PM   #9
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Mav wrote:
Quote:
And here is another one resized with that program:

That's what I was looking for (a photo including camera settings).

Your shutter speed was 1/2 second.

That's way too slow to get a sharp photo without a tripod. In other words, it's motion blur from camera shake (the most common cause of blurry photos when users try to take photos indoors without a flash or tripod).

Indoors with most non-DSLR models, you're going to need to use the flash. Otherwise, shutter speeds are going to be too slow. Light is much lower than it appears to your eyes indoors in most lighting.

If you've got very steady hands, and squeeze the shutter button smoothly, you might be able to get a usable photo without a flash in some indoor conditions, if you stay on the wide angle lens setting (the more optical zoom you use, the more blur from camera shake you'll have). Staying on the wide end of the zoom scale will also allow more light. You'd also need to raise your ISO speed.

However, this photo was taken at ISO 200 and f/3.5 and needed a 1/2 second shutter speed for proper exposure. So, even if you stayed on the wide end of the zoom, and increased ISO speed to 400 (which would add noise), shutter speeds would have still been too slow for a hand held photo without blur. You'd need a tripod or flash in that lighting to get a sharp photo.

The rule of thumb for preventing camera shake is to make sure you've got shutter speeds of 1/focal length or faster. For example, if shooting at a focal length equivalent to 50mm, you'll want to make sure you've got shutter speeds of 1/50 second or faster. If shooting at 100mm, you'll want shutter speeds of 1/100 second or faster. If shooting at 300mm you'll want shutter speeds of 1/300 second or faster, etc. This is only a rule of thumb (some users can hold a camera steadier than others). But, your shutter speed is so slow (1/2 second), that you're not going to get any good photos that way.

With a non-DSLR model, your available ISO speeds are limited to a maximum of around ISO 400 with most models (each time you double the ISO speed, the camera can use shutter speeds that are twice as fast for any given aperture and lighting condition).

So, in most indoor lighting, you'll need to use a tripod if not using a flash with your camera.

Your entire problem is most likely blur from camera shake (a 1/2 second shutter speed is just too slow to hand hold a camera without using a tripod). I'd retest using a tripod (and use the self timer so that you don't shake the camera when pushing the shutter button).

Also, try taking the photos using a flash. Based on the shutter speed used in the posted image, I doubt anything is wrong with the camera (the light is just too low for taking photos unless you use a flash or tripod).


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Old Jan 4, 2006, 9:48 PM   #10
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Ok, a new photo, with the cam on top of the desk and with flash (i'm not sure but i think the previous photo was also with flash):
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