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Old Sep 24, 2005, 7:55 PM   #1
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I am using a FZ 20 and seem to be getting a lot of pictures out of focus using the Auto focus. I have been using spot focus a lot would that be a problem?

I have been working on action shots but i have had problems with stills also.

Any ideas or settings that wouls help?
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 9:10 PM   #2
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Spot focus should be fine. Is IS turned on and if so try mode 2. Are you sure the camera is signaling in focus before you fully depress the shutter. Are you sure the camera is not picking something in front of the subject and focusing on it (a fence, a limb or leaf etc.). Other than that most of your pictures should be in focus, of course we all get some that are not. Also, for action shots be sure and shoot in burst mode. All I can think of, hope it helps.
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 9:12 PM   #3
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I also use spot focus with the FZ20 and It works pretty good not 100% success rate but maybe 90%.

One thing I can not use is continuous autofocus ..I always have it turned off.

The FZ20s autofocus is slower than the FZ5 or 30 but it should be fine for still shots. And some get good results with action shots but I have some trouble with that , mysuccess rate falls to maybe 50%.

Maybe try the 3 pt autofocus as it is faster.

Are you aware that it needs a vertical edge to focus on?



[b]FZ 20 and seem to be getting a lot of pictures out of focus using the Auto focus. I have been using spot focus a lot would that be a problem?

I have been working on action shots but i have had problems with stills also.

Any ideas or settings that wouls help?
[/quote]
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 9:57 PM   #4
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What are you refering to when you say vertical edge to focus on?
I am not familiar with this?
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 10:04 PM   #5
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The is a pic that to me just does not look sharp.

Only thing I have done is resize.


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Old Sep 25, 2005, 1:10 PM   #6
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I don't know; looks like a nice shot to me. I think it looks 100% better with a little PP. I usually just use Picasa2, cause it's so quick and easy for basic fixes. Here's the same shot with quick auto contrast and auto sharpen. Second one is added warmify.
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Old Sep 25, 2005, 1:11 PM   #7
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Second one, added warmify:
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Old Sep 25, 2005, 3:32 PM   #8
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Now I do not think thats a bad photo at all but I do agree that the focus seems to be a little off...usually when that happens there is a spot in the photo that is in better focus than the subject but I do not see that in this photo.

Was there something in the cropped portion of the picture that the camera focused on?



What I meant by a vertical edge is if the camera is held in the normal position to take a picture there must be an edge of fairly strong contrast for the focus to lock on.

In that photo the right edge of her shorts would be good.. but it would be better if the shorts were black.

And if the camera were held in like the portrait mode, the edge would need to be horizonal.

I am not sure I explained that very well.
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Old Sep 26, 2005, 1:36 AM   #9
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the FZ20 doesn't need a 'vertical edge' so much as something with contrast to focus on. give ita reasonably sharp transition between colors - horizontal or vertical isn't really important - and it should do fine. but sometimes if you're using spot mode, and you're focusing on a largearea or subject thathas little contrast, the camera will have a hard time focusing, and sometimes won't focus at all. in this photo, if you were using spot mode and focusing on the golfer's yellow top, there might not have been enough contrast within thespot mode targetzone for the camera toachieve a sharp focus. if you have trouble with this, try using center 1-area focusing; it expands the focal area and increases the camera's ability to 'find' something in the focus area with enough contrast to let the autofocus work. if that still doesn't work, do as genece suggested, and try the 3-area mode, although if you can't achieve a clear focus with single-area mode, chances are the 3-area focus won't help much.

also, make sure you're half-pressing the shutter to let the camera focus before you press the shutter all the way. it takes about half a second to focus. if you're shooting in a situation where the subject won't hold still long enough, focus on something a couple of feet closer than the subject itself, hold the shutter half-pressed to lock the focus, then recompose and shoot. you can also do this with manual focus.
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Old Sep 26, 2005, 1:45 AM   #10
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Thanks for the help.

I was using spot focus most of the day and I would focus on the golfer before the swing and hold the button half way down until she would swing. Sounds like I must not have had a good place to focus. I will try the other focus modes and see if that helps. I also noticed that Corcoj really made the picture look a lot better. I am trying to learn Elements, are there any quick clicks that I should try on this series of photos to clear them up. Any Ideas. I am real new to photo shop.
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