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Old Mar 9, 2009, 11:10 AM   #1
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I purchased a DSC-W120 for my wife, for Christmas. Whilst I am pleased with the build quality and the range of features offered, the resulting photos are, well, rubbish.

To be fair, outdoor shots are quite nice - It's indoor shots that are disappointing. The steady shot is definitely enabled, but the photos are blurry and lacking in detail. For example, I took a couple of photos of my young son standing around yesterday. There was very little motion, yet the resulting photos have little-to-no definition! His face is very blurry. If it were only affecting one or two photos, I could live with it. The trouble is, the majority of our indoor photos (which, during the winter months, is most of our shots) are simply unacceptable. We've lost a great many photos due to the poor results from the W120 (some moment that we'll never get again). I've resorted to using my D80 in all situations, for now, just to guarantee I end up with a usable photo!

Am I possibly doing something wrong? Should I dump the camera?

I thought I'd post here before throwing the camera onto ebay. Steve's review helped in making my decision to purchase the camera. As the review was generally glowing, it makes me wonder if there's something wrong with my W120!?

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Old Mar 9, 2009, 7:15 PM   #2
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Without seeing any of your problem photos, two things come to mind ... is the flash firing (and not being blocked by a wayward finger) AND are you gentlypressing the shutter release half way down, then completing the press a fraction of a second later?

If the flash is not firing indoors, then you will get blur. If you are "punching" the release you probably will also not get a good photo, especially since it takes the camera a half second or so to see the subject, focus, and release — especially in low light (indoors) situations.

Try this indoors. First, aim the camera at a subject, hold it very steady, half-press the release, allow the camera to focus and self-adjust, wait for the beep, then press the remainder of the way and don't move anything for an additional half-second or so. Did the flash fire? Is the picture sharp(er)?

Many of my beginner P&S shooters tend to "punch" the release, and on a P&S that just does not work well. Once right technique is achieved, their pictures come out sharp(er).

If you need a camera with no noticable shutter lag, one you can generally "punch" the release on since it has no shutter lag, then a quality dSLR is probably your best bet.

I shoot professional-level dSLRs and occasionallyP&S cameras, and my wife does the reverse; the W170 is her current P&S of choice.Having been a photographer at all levels for over50 years, I cannot remember learning the whens and hows of shooting and the transition learnings to digital. But by watching my wife and kids learn, as well as my students, I have found that the P&S shutter delay takes a bit of getting used to!

However, if the flash does not fire, and/or technique does not help, and you have thoroughly read the manual as to default factory settings, then you probably have a problem with the camera.

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