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Old Mar 1, 2010, 3:09 PM   #1
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Default Received FZ38 - Not good results so far :(

hi guys,

Today i am the proud owner of a panasonic FZ38 and have had a playabout with it indoors. So far unfortunately, i'm getting the same issues that i had with the panasonic TZ7.

I used the following settings:-

ISO 80
FLASH ON/AUTO (for most photos as some coming out totally dark)
SHUTTER = 1/25 (Due to fast movements of baby and kids)
APR = F7.1
SATURATION = 1

The photos are coming out noisy, the background is kind of dull/dark and the subject is either very overexposed or sometimes underexposed.

LOT OF NOISE AND IMAGE IS KIND OF DARK, EVEN THOUGH FLASH WAS USED:-
http://img408.imageshack.us/img408/8646/p1010011cl.jpg

EXTREMLY DARK!:-
http://img695.imageshack.us/img695/4176/p1010010jo.jpg

AGAIN DULL/DARK AND IF YOU LOOK AT THE TV, YOU CAN SEE A LOT OF NOISE:-
http://img682.imageshack.us/img682/7703/p1010008o.jpg

BABY'S PHOTO IS VERY DULL/DARK AND IS UNEXPOSED:-
http://img411.imageshack.us/img411/6029/p1010029r.jpg

FYI, these are indoor photos with energy saving light bulbs. I expect some dim shots, but they should still be fairly clear.

Any suggestions pls?

Last edited by amateurman; Mar 1, 2010 at 3:28 PM. Reason: Added description to photos
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 3:58 PM   #2
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Default Strange!

amateurman,not sure what the problem is, but there is certainly something
not quite right, as that is not what I am experiencing at all.
First of all I would start by checking the camera image defaults i.e. Contract,
Noise Reduction etc are all set to 0 (and that it has not been set at -2 etc.
by mistake). Then I would set to P mode and try using a f/4 (all your images
were taken at f/7.1) and ISO of not more than 200. Also try doing a longer
exposure. I wonder if the auto aperture is faulty or something????
Keep us posted.
Regards
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 4:02 PM   #3
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what mode are you shooting in? are you trying to shoot manual and guess an exposure? because these are way off.
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:01 PM   #4
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@ dbnnet - is there a way of doing a factory default setting again? Also once this is done, what settings do u recommend i change - pls bear in mind that its indoor shooting, some slight fast motion, although mainly still photos and the lighting is bog standard energy saving bulbs.

@hards80 - i'm shooting in manual mode mate and i used settings that mark1616 recommended on this thread:- http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...or-photos.html
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:20 PM   #5
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ok, for the shots in which the subject is further away i would expect these results. the manual settings outlined in that other thread were aimed at stopping action by underexposing the ambient scene and then letting the flash do all of the work. the flash output of these small pop-up flashes makes this not work at long distances.

and the really dark scene, the flash didnt fire, so of course that one will be very very dark.

one thing that is somewhat perplexing is the baby shot. that one appears to be shot pretty close-up, where the flash should hv plenty of power to illuminate the scene. the ttl metering got fooled by something. and i really don't have a good reason why. at this distance the shot should have looked like mark's final picture he posted of himself.

ok, for shots at longer distances, or you want to illuminate the whole room, i would probably try shooting in P mode, as the flash output alone isn't going to be powerful enough to illuminate a whole room on its own, with the exposure set to underexpose.

for the baby type shot, maybe try increasing the exposure a bit. try opening up your aperture to f4 or something, maybe bump up the iso to 100-200. maybe it was an anomoly too and the flash just got fooled by something.
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:23 PM   #6
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thanks hards80. I hope u don't mind, but since i hardly have a clue about these camera, can u pls tell me which settings on my FZ38/FZ35 i need to change? How do i set the exposure to underexpose?

Also what should the WB be set to for a room with yellowy energy saving bulbs?
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:26 PM   #7
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Default Not manual!

Since you are starting out, and I take it these shots are test and are not "mission critical", then set the camera to iA (wait Sarah!), take about 20 shots indoors, then have a look at the resulting settings the camera chose in your computer.

This will give you a guide as to the apertures and shutters speeds to use.

Coming from using my FZ18, I would not be using Manual mode at all - indoors you need the aperture wide open at all times - shutter speed will be determined by the ISO either you or the camera set.

So really all you can do with these cameras indoors is experiment with the ISO with and without flash, play with the in-camera picture adjustments such as contrast, saturation and noise reduction, and eventually you will find a balance that suits you. If you get a nice shot that has a bit too much noise, then this can be dealt with on the PC

Panasonic recommends lowering the saturation, and contrast for indoor shots

You have to accept that you may only get 50% keepers in challenging indoor conditions, especially with the little ones.

G'luck
Greg
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:27 PM   #8
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the settings from mark's post are set to underexpose without flash indoors. therefore, the point of that post you linked was to underexpose the scene, and then let the flash provide the illumination.

so the settings you used here were set to underexpose without flash, then the flash should compensate and illuminate. but like i said, sometimes the flash can be a bit underpowered for a large room, or if you are far away from the subject.

since you are completely new to this camera. i would suggest shooting in P mode for at least a little while, it should give you decent flash and non-flash shots both.

and for shots like the one of your baby, your baby is not moving, so you really don't need to use those suggestions in mark's post for stopping action. p-mode with flash on should be fine.
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:29 PM   #9
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later after you are more familiar with your camera, you will notice that shots indoors where action is present the p-mode may not be working for you.

then you can revisit mark's post, or ask again.

but for now i would suggest familiarizing yourself with your camera and working on things step by step.
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 5:45 PM   #10
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hi guys, thank u so much for ur help. Since i really don't have an understanding of these settings, i decided to try out greg's idea of setting the camera back to iA mode and then see what settings it uses. I was amazed that it used ISO 400 & 800.

The photos as u can see are very noisy and very yellowy.

iso400, f3.0 1/5 - no flash:
http://img27.imageshack.us/img27/3041/p1010086o.jpg

iso400, f3.4 1/4 - no flash:
http://img175.imageshack.us/img175/2860/p1010084.jpg

iso800, f2.8 1/13 - no flash:
http://img121.imageshack.us/img121/8632/p1010082w.jpg
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