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eysha Jul 8, 2014 7:46 AM

Advice please
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I have been taking photos through my kitchen window in the hopes of getting some good bird shots. I have the 200 mm lens on. I have also been using sports mode to get a faster shot - but I cannot get a good sharp shot so help and advice is needed please.

Here is a typical shot - blurred - how can I get it sharper - what settings should I be using?
The settings for this shot are F 4.4 - EXPOSURE 1/125 ISO 250 FOCAL LENGTH 86.
I have tried apature and sports mode with the same results.
What do you advise to get a good sharp shot?
Thanks in advance.

JohnG Jul 8, 2014 8:43 AM

Can you show the original shot before you cropped it? Overcropping is a big culprit in reducing image quality. So, if you show how the image was framed before the crop, that will give us an idea of how much that might be contributing to your problem.

eysha Jul 8, 2014 9:13 AM

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Thanks for the reply John G. here is a shot taken at the same distance as the one before which I cropped but didn't keep the original. It is untouched - straight out of the camera but saved for the web for the uploader size.

This was taken today at F 3.8 Ex 1/80 ISO 400 Focal Length 79mm.

The bird feeder never gets moved.
Do I need a better lens, better magnification or better settings?
Thanks for the help.

Raghu Jul 8, 2014 9:17 AM

Since you are asking for suggestions, let me offer these:
1. Try without an additional lens first. The weight of the lens may shake your hand. FZ38 should be capable of reaching this bird without an extra lens.
2. Use a tripod, or at least rest the camera on a solid surface and then shoot.
3. Manual focusing would come in very handy, provided the bird sits there for a few seconds at least.
That's a cute bird, and we would like to see you good images of that. Please keep trying.

eysha Jul 8, 2014 9:41 AM

Thanks Raghu, the camera is on a tripod to stop shake. These little birds are very fast so manual focus wouldn't work which is why I tried sports mode.
I will try without the long lens out of curiosity but I think the distance is too far for the camera.
all advice welcome Raghu as I still need a lot of help. Garden birds as I don't get out too much too.

JohnG Jul 8, 2014 10:18 AM

If you are using a tripod, shake should not be a problem. However, nothing is really sharp here. The feeder and post aren't that sharp. I suspect a big part of the problem may be the window you are shooting through - shooting through windoes is going to be problematic in good circumstances, much less with rain involved. Are you able to open the window so you're not shooting through the glass? Even still - you're doing some pretty hefty crops. So, even if you remove the window from the equation, that's a lot of cropping for such a small sensor.

sucama Jul 8, 2014 12:30 PM

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hi Eysha : maybe some retouch or pp help you.
add some contrast and focus mask in silkypix:)

eysha Jul 8, 2014 2:05 PM

Thanks Sucama but I need to learn how to get sharper photos.

jjdog2 Jul 8, 2014 8:10 PM

Eysha, sometimes I think that you want more out of the FZ38 then it is capable of producing.

It is a great camera but it has it's limitations. You can't expect it to preform well on the long end of the zoom shooting a small subject under bad light. Nope, forget it.

But it can be a fun camera, you just need to understand the limitations and adjust how you shoot to compensate.


eysha Jul 9, 2014 5:25 AM

I do understand that cameras, like people and everything else, has limitations JJdog, I was simply asking those more knowledgable than me for help and advice. I didn't expect miracle but I did think that someone may suggest some settings I hadn't thought of or wasn't using, me still being a novice to photography.
I have found this forum helpful in the past, perhaps it's better not to ask for help but just show great photos - I can try.
Thanks for your reply.

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