Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > What Camera Should I Buy?

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Apr 7, 2006, 4:02 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 4
Default

I am about to purchase this camera on the fact that someone told me it was more than a point and shoot camera. Apparently i can play with shutter speed and appeture. Has anyone out there got one and could advise me on it. I really want to know wether or not its a good buy and if it's the sort of camera that i can get really creative with??????????????????



Thanks
Fitchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Apr 8, 2006, 10:59 AM   #2
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

It depends on what you mean by "get really creative".

Non-DSLR models have much greater depth of field compared to DSLR models with larger sensors.

So, it can be difficult to get a shallow depth of field with larger subjects (people) using a larger aperture (smaller f/stop number) if you want to blur backgrounds to help your subject stand out from them. A DSLR model is best for that use.

More often than not, the greater depth of field in a non-DSLR model can be a good thing, though.

The MJU 800 (a.k.a., Olympus Stylus 800) will give you both Aperture Priority (you pick the aperture and the camera picks the shutter speed) and Shutter Priority (you pick the shutter speed and the camera picks the aperture).

You'll find a review here:

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2005_...stylus800.html

JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 9, 2006, 6:57 AM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 4
Default

Thanks,

I really wanted to know if myaction (sport)shots will not be blurred as they are with my current camera.

I also want to be able to open the shutter enough to get slow waterfall effects and excellent night pictures.

Thats all i mean by Cerative.
Fitchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 9, 2006, 7:24 AM   #4
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

Fitchy wrote:
Quote:
I really wanted to know if myaction (sport)shots will not be blurred as they are with my current camera.
What camera to you have now?

Just because you can set the shutter speed faster on a camera, doesn't mean that you 'll get usable photos that way. That's a common misconception. Often, users will ask why their photos are totally black, when they try to set a shutter speed that's too fast on cameras that allow you to set it.

The length of time the shutter needs to stay open to "expose" the film or sensor depends on the light available, the aperture setting of the lens (and any lens will have a largest aperture that it can open up to), and the ISO speed (which controls how sensitive the film or sensor is to light).

If you use a shutter speed that's too fast for the lighting, aperture and ISO speed, you'll get dark (underexposed photos).

Are you shooting night sports or sports inside? That kind of use is *very* demanding of a camera (and usually requires a DSLR with a very bright lens). DSLR models have larger sensors with higher available ISO speeds with lower noise levels.

Give us some info on your current model, and let us know what conditions you're trying to use it in when you have problems.

Quote:
I also want to be able to open the shutter enough to get slow waterfall effects and excellent night pictures.
In brighter lighting, if you try to leave the shutter open too long, you'll get overexposed images (too bright, or even totally white), depending on the smallest available aperture. Often, a Neutral Density Filter is required to slow down shutter speeds enough in daylight to blur moving water. This kind of filter is designed to block some of the light getting to the lens so that slower shutter speeds are usable. So, you'll want a model capable of taking filters.

As for night photos, you'd want to use a tripod, keeping ISO speed set as low as possible with most models for best results. You'll also want to make sure you can set the shutter speed to a slow enough speed for desired results.

JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 9, 2006, 7:59 AM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 4
Default

at the minute i'm just using a digital point and shoot (olympus MJU 400)

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I'm at the stage where i want to get really creative but can only afford something like the Olympus MJU 800.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Reading you msg i'm am getting the impression i will need DSLR and the MJU 800 will not be capable of taking the pics i have in mind. I'm not a professional photographer i just want a small compact camera that i can take almost everywhere and achieve great snaps and then have the option of blowing them up large if i wish. This means no blurring. Anytime i snap someone/something in action with the olympus 400 its always blurry - this drives me crazy. I won't be taking specific sports shots, i just wanted to know if the camera is capable of doing so.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Asfor the night shots i'm already use a tripod with the Olympus 400 and it just has the one standard setting. The pictures are okbut i get the feeling the quality could be a lot better.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Thanks for taking the time to reply to me, its quite obvious you have a great knowledge of photography which i appreciate. Please advise me whether to purchase the olympus MJU 800 or just save more and get a digital SLR. any camera reccomendations would be greatly appreciated.

What i wd love, Compact, Around 7,8 MP, ability to capture great night and action pics andhave Mpeg movie feature (i know most DSLR don't have this feature)



Cheers Darren
Fitchy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 9, 2006, 8:19 AM   #6
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

Fitchy wrote:
Quote:
Anytime i snap someone/something in action with the olympus 400 its always blurry - this drives me crazy. I won't be taking specific sports shots, i just wanted to know if the camera is capable of doing so.
Let's figure out why you're getting blurry photos first.

Again, the shutter speed a camera is capable of using (and still get properly exposed images) depends on the available light, the ISO speed, and the aperture setting of the lens.

In poor light, most models will already be using their largest available aperture (smallest available f/stop number) for the amount of zoom used, even in auto mode.

So, the only thing that you can do with most models to get faster shutter speeds in poor lighitng (and indoors is low light to a camera) is to increase ISO speed (or just use a flash). Each time you double the ISO speed, the camera can use shutter speeds twice as fast for the same lighting and aperture.

Your existing camera does not allow you to adjust ISO speed manually (most do). But, it is automatically increasing the ISO speed for you in lower light (up to ISO 320).

Most models (especially compact models) also lose a lot of light as you zoom in.

The lens on your Olympus Stylus 400 (MJU 400) is rated at f/3.1-5.2

That means that the largest available aperture at the widest zoom setting is f/3.1, and the largest available aperture at it's longest zoom setting is f/5.2.

The aperture scale (in one stop increments) goes f/1.0, f/1.4, f/2.0, f/2.8, f/4.0, f/5.6, f/8.0, f/11, f/16, f/22, etc. With each one stop move to a smaller aperture (represented by larger f/stop numbers), you will need shutter speeds twice as long for proper exposure.

The lens on your existing camera is more than twice as bright at it's widest zoom setting, versus it's longest zoom setting. So, staying at the wide angle end of the lens can help a lot (don't zoom in as much). This is typical of subcompact cameras.

The MJU 800 does have higher available ISO Speeds compared to your current model, and it allows you to adjust the ISO speed manually. So, it would be an improvement over your current model in low light. Higher ISO speeds will mean higher noise levels if you do set it higher (noise is similar to film grain).

In what conditions are you seeing blurry photos? If indoors, your best bet is to use a flash with most cameras. With a flash, shutter speed is not as critical (since the flash itself can freeze the action in most lighting requiring one).

JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 9, 2006, 9:49 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
mtclimber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 18,143
Default

Darren and JimC-

Another idea is to move to an Olympus E-300. They are currently selling at an all time low price. The price span is not that huge.

MT
mtclimber is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 5:52 PM.