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Old Aug 21, 2010, 1:36 PM   #1
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Default Canon SD 4000 takes photos with blur/noise?

i thought canon sd4000 was the best camera to buy, nice pics and HD videos but when i zoom the photos i can see this problem

images removed by moderator due to copyright concerns

JimC



i don't know if the correct term for this problem is blur or noise, but the photos look like they were taken with a cellphone or with a sony cybershot

I stop buying sony cybershots for this reason, but now canon? what a shame! so what canon camera should i get if i dont like this kind of photos?

Last edited by shoot21; Aug 22, 2010 at 11:39 AM.
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Old Aug 21, 2010, 3:18 PM   #2
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I assume what you posted above are 100% crops? Under what light conditions were the above pictures taken and with what ISO?

The best pocket size camera from Canon is the S90/S95
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 11:35 AM   #3
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hi i've been seing s90's photos and they are not impresive at all.

what i'm looking for is a canon ($300 as maximum) and no noisy photos
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 12:07 PM   #4
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what i'm looking for is a canon ($300 as maximum) and no noisy photos
Add a zero ($3000 versus $300), and look at the Canon EOS-5D Mark II with a bright prime for starters (for example, a 50mm f/1.4). But, you can still get some noise with that kind of camera if ISO speeds are set high enough and light is very low. So, I'd also budget for a good external flash to use with it. ;-)

Your photos do not include EXIF information (a header in the image file that lets members see camera settings used). Without knowing more about the conditions you were shooting in, and what camera settings were used, it's hard to say what any issues are.

But, if you're looking at 100% crops (versus a downsized image like you'd normally use for web posting or printing), you can usually see some noise in underexposed areas of most images with most cameras if ISO speeds are higher. That first photo also looks like it's got some blur from camera shake adding to the problem; and the other crops you posted are underexposed (and noise is going to be worse in underexposed areas of an image).

Were you using a flash *and* making sure you were within the rated flash range for that camera? If not, you can expect some noise and blur from most smaller cameras like that if you're trying to shoot indoors, especially if you're zoomed in much (since the lens on that type of camera gets dimmer as you zoom in, requiring higher ISO speeds and slower shutter speeds for proper exposure if you're not using a flash; and reducing flash range if you are using a flash).

You're probably not going to get much helpful advise unless you can post some downsized images including camera settings used, versus posting crops from images you don't like.

IOW, changing camera models (like your comments from Sony models to your current Canon model) may not help anything at all; as most smaller Point and Shoot models from major manufacturers are going to have similar image quality in the same condtions. In the Canon Point and shoot lineup, as already suggested, look at the S90 (or in a bit larger camera with a hotshoe for an external flash, look at the G11), and you might see some improvement. But, you'll need to learn to live within any camera's limitations (usable ISO speeds for the lighting you're shooting in [for your desired print/viewing sizes], flash range limitations, etc.).

There are tradeoffs with any solution.

So, instead of jumping from camera to camera trying to find one that works better, you may want to post some downsized samples including camera settings used (aperture, iso speed, flash settinigs, etc.) and see what you may be able to do differently to get better images from a camera in your price range.

Cameras in your price range have very tiny sensors. The built in flash in a model that small can also leave something to be desired.

It sounds like you want dSLR performance in a pocketable camera at a budget price. ;-)

Yet, your earlier posts looking for a new camera indicated you were looking for a smaller camera for facebook photos. You can't expect great image quality at 100% viewing size from a small, pocketable P&S camera in all lighting condtions, especially if you're not using a flash or not within the camera's rated flash range.

It's all a matter of balance (with size, weight, cost and desired print/viewing sizes entering into the equation).

If you can bend on the budget and size requirements some, you may want to look at an entry level dSLR model, adding an external flash to it for use in lower light (so you can bounce it for more even and diffused lighting).

But, don't expect to get great photos without some work on your end, understanding how the camera settings influence results, especially in tough lighting conditions.

There are tradeoffs with any solution.
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 1:09 PM   #5
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It's reasonably likely that the problem is behind the camera rather than inside it.

In good light any camera on auto mode works reasonably well. When you start pushing the parameters all cameras require greater skill from the operator. Just going for a more expensive camera might not help, more expensive cameras require more skill not less.

Post some images as requested above. We'll see if we can help.
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 2:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoot21 View Post
i thought canon sd4000 was the best camera to buy, nice pics and HD videos but when i zoom the photos i can see this problem

i don't know if the correct term for this problem is blur or noise, but the photos look like they were taken with a cellphone or with a sony cybershot

I stop buying sony cybershots for this reason, but now canon? what a shame! so what canon camera should i get if i dont like this kind of photos?
Hi Shoot21,

IMAGE-1:
-----------
For image-1 you said "but when i zoom the photos i can see this problem". One major reason why blur can happen when you zoom is because the SD4000 lens is rated at F2.0 at wide and F5.3 at tele. That is almost a 3 stop difference. Each stop loses 1/2 the light of the previous stop. So 3 stops is not 1/3 the light but 1/8 the light.

When you zoomed in you lost a lot of light. I’ll bet that the shake warning appeared on the screen when you took that photo. If so, the camera was warning you that the image would probably be blurred (unless you happened to hold the camera rock steady at the instant the shutter was tripped). The great loss of light combined with the zoom (which amplifies shake) results in blurred images. The reason loss of light results in blurred images is that in lower light situations, the shutter has to remain open longer to compensate. Shutter speeds slower than about 1/60 second make it hard to hold the camera steady for that duration. Sometimes 1/30 second is ok but things go down hill below 1/60 second.

One way to overcome the shake warning if it comes on is to zoom back out in steps until the warning goes off. Zooming back out lets in more light which allows faster shutter speeds resulting in less blurred images. Then crop the photo in post processing to get the zoom you wanted. Just be aware that the more you crop, the more apparent the imperfections will become. But the image of the menu will still be a lot better than the one you posted. Using sharpening and a noise reduction software like the free "Neat Image" can make this type of pseudo zoom look very acceptable.

IMAGE-2 Girl’s face:
----------------------
You listed “ISO 5000, F2.0”. In most small sensor cameras, the maximum ISO with acceptable noise is about ISO 400. It might be higher with the SD4000 but for sure ISO 5000 is light-years too high to expect noise free images from a small sensor camera. If there’s a way to limit the maximum ISO that the camera will use, try experimenting to see what ISO value is acceptable to you and set the max to that number. You can override that setting for “gotta take the picture no matter what” situations.

Sky

Last edited by skylark; Aug 23, 2010 at 3:17 AM.
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 2:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoot21 View Post
i thought canon sd4000 was the best camera to buy, nice pics and HD videos but when i zoom the photos i can see this problem

i don't know if the correct term for this problem is blur or noise, but the photos look like they were taken with a cellphone or with a sony cybershot

I stop buying sony cybershots for this reason, but now canon? what a shame! so what canon camera should i get if i dont like this kind of photos?
Overall, I think I understand the circumstances, and if right, your images are pretty good given the conditions.

The girl at f2 and iso 5000, means it was dark. The image is grainy, expected for anything over iso 800. Did you try some noise reduction software? That will probably clean it up a bit, although the in camera processing probably did as much as it could. The camera does have a flash, and the flash usually is used in dark situations. If you choose not to use the flash, well - you get what you get.

The first one. Zooming out to a wide angle (where the lens is f2) and then stepping in to get closer would have been better. That way you would have had the f2, keeping the iso (what ever it was - which appears to be just fine), and zooming with your feet.

Just because you have a good low light camera does not mean that it will take great images in total darkness. The user needs to take some responsibility here. Practice and learn a bit of what the camera is capable of, what it can do, and how to help it do what it does. Understand the situation and then as an intelligent thinking user who understands the situation, put the camera in a position to help it take the best image possible.


Last edited by interested_observer; Aug 22, 2010 at 2:51 PM.
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Old Aug 22, 2010, 3:28 PM   #8
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Can we see some photos:

(1) at normal resolution under low light conditions.
(2) at normal resolution under normal outdoor lighting.

This will give us a beginning point from which we can move forward with helping you.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Aug 23, 2010, 5:32 AM   #9
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The photos (the two first at least) seem to be taken from here:
http://www.infosyncworld.com/reviews...-is/10995.html
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Old Aug 23, 2010, 6:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoo View Post
The photos (the two first at least) seem to be taken from here:
http://www.infosyncworld.com/reviews...-is/10995.html
Thanks.

shoot21

Please do not embed images in posts unless you are the one that took them, and you are the copyright holder.

If you want to discuss images you found elsewhere, post a link to the page you found them on instead.
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