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Old Apr 12, 2010, 1:00 PM   #1
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Default Just had a very bad trip with my FZ5... my fault

Last night I was reviewing the photos I took while on a two-week business trip to Sydney, Australia.

Out of 1300 photos, I think I might have 30 or so keepers, and I completely blew some shots I really wish I hadn't.

Most of it was my fault, some of it the camera's.

I should have used Shutter-priority during action shots (my first high-speed action shots, really) and in low-light pics of moving objects. While the camera had the aperture wide-open most of the time, it was reluctant to raise the ISO on P. However, I would have gladly accepted noise over the inadequate shutter speeds I ended up with. I don't think it took a single picture over ISO 200. I lost what would have been a spectacular shot of a polo match as a result of a 1/100 shutter. (It's got three players, all of which have their horses in mid-stride, a mallet just starting to swing down, great facial expressions, the works. I have a noise-free ISO 80 shot of motion-blur.) You live, you learn.

Most of my previous shots have been landscapes, zoo shots, that kind of thing... which means I have kept the dial on P and A most of the time, with generous amounts of exposure compensation when necessary.

As far as the camera goes. I have obvious, horrible fringing in some shots, and macro shots less sharp than I was hoping for. My night shots have clearly-defined lit objects, but objects consisting of lights themselves (an amusement park) come out like a blob of light.

Overall, I can't really blame the camera. It's just that I picked a horrible time to expand my picture-taking situations. The pictures I took of things I am used to taking (well-lit landscapes and relatively stationary animals) turned out exactly like what I have come to expect from my camera. I simply learned the limits of slow shutter speeds at great cost in all those other shots. In the past, I only really looked at the shutter speed to determine how steady I would need to hold the camera. Intellectually, I knew that moving objects required faster speeds (duh!) but I never really paid attention to it before.

Yes, a DSLR probably would have chosen to bump the ISO and sped up the shutter on general principles, since the noise sacrifice is not as great. Some of the newer compacts with "scene detection" would have "seen" the moving objects and done the same thing. But in the end, it was my fault. I knew exactly what those numbers on the display meant, I just chose not to pay attention.

I just wish I had picked a better time (about ten timezones closer to home) to learn that lesson.

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Old Apr 12, 2010, 3:08 PM   #2
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Could you maybe post a few of the pics with the EXIF data. Lets see if you can get some constructive input form the mentors. Maybe we can all help.
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