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Old Oct 26, 2004, 1:34 PM   #1
idq
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Hi! I've a Minolta DiMage XT at the moment. I'm quite disappointed with its picture quality at night. It's always blur. Totally unacceptable. I'm quite fed up with it.

Can you guys recommend me a good slim digicam that perform acceptably well at taking low lighting shots?

I know it requires fast shutter speed...

Thanks!
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 3:34 PM   #2
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idq wrote:
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Can you guys recommend me a good slim digicam that perform acceptably well at taking low lighting shots?

I know it requires fast shutter speed...

Thanks!
No it doesn't! It requires a slow shutter speed. Nigth shots are a low ligth situation, so you need a slower shutter speed so more info enters the camera sensor.

Anyway, a XT isn't the ideal nigth shots camera...maybe a DSLR?? If you're looking for a small camera for taking pics at nigth sheck out the Sony, they have some cameras wit AF assist ligth. At what distance from the subject are you taking pics at nigth? The flash has a limited range.
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 4:18 PM   #3
idq
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I just want to capture some sceneries at night.

I tried using my friend's digicam and the pix turns out good coz his cam's shutter speed is really fast.

My cam on the other hand is super blur. Whenever I turn off the flash and capture, the cam will take 10 seconds to process every picture taken. The result is always blurry.

If I were to use flash, everything will be very dark.
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Old Oct 27, 2004, 8:43 AM   #4
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Help... can anyone recommend me a good compact camera that has sharp image quality for low lighting shots as well as night shots ie. night scenery and fireworks? I spent countless hours reading steve's review but I still can't decide which one to buy....

Steve... u there?

help...
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Old Oct 27, 2004, 9:47 AM   #5
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idq

There's 3 reasons I can think of off the top of my head that a night shot comes out blurry for you.

1) Its night - there's not a lot of light entering the camera lens, so the sensor has to be exposed longer. Because its a long exposure, if you don't have it on a tripod or otherwise out-of-your-hands, you will shake the camera too much to get a decent picture. Nothing about you - we're just not built to keep something perfectly stationary.

2) Its night - so there's not much light for the auto-focus to work with. The autofocus is looking for contrast at the location you're pointing it at, and not finding any. Many cameras won't take at all if they can't lock focus, but it may be that yours is locking it badly. It can also make the start of the capture slower, trying to acquire it.

3) Because there's a long exposure, any pictures you take of moving objects will turn out blurry because the camera sensor is averaging them over time. This can be a neat effect if used properly (for instance, taking pictures of cars moving), but means that people shots are pretty much out.

Ways to work around these problems are:

1) get more light into the camera. On an SLR (or other exchangable lens system), a faster lens will allow more light in, but probably not enough to make a huge difference. Every built-in flash that I've heard of on a camera is pretty weak, and won't provide enough for a night shot unless you're shooting people within a few feet of the camera. If your camera supports an external flash, you can get a few more feet out of it. A flash is not suitable for landscapes.

2) Increase the gain, aka "ISO" setting so named for the grain of film its comparable to. This results in grainer pictures, but will shorten the length of exposure. Most cameras that support this will require you to be in an advanced mode to set this. It still won't make shots instant, but reduce the time greatly.

3) Use manual focus if available. Your eye works better than most AF systems in low light.

4) Keep the camera stationary for the entire exposure - use a tripod! You may even have the ability to do a remote release of the shutter so you don't have to touch the camera directly. On SLR systems, a mirror is actually moving when you release - for these, you'll probably want to use a "mirror lockup" feature so that any vibrations caused by a moving mirror will dissipate before the image starts being collected.

Simply upgrading your camera won't make any of these problems go away, though you can shop towards cameras that have features to allow you to compensate. Night shots are difficult, but can be very neat if they turn out right.

Hope this helps!

Seth


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Old Oct 29, 2004, 5:39 AM   #6
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Thanks for the reply. I really appreciate it.

Btw, I've survey a few cameras that might help in my quest of searching for a better night shot cam.

What do you think about the Sony T1, Casio QV-R51, EXILIM ZOOM EX-Z50. The Panasonic DMC-FX5 seems pretty good with their built in image stabiliser.
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