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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 4:55 pm 
Hello all,


Thought i'd register on the site and see if could get a bit of advice from you pro's :)

Now I'm quite new to DSLRs and photography in general. Got the Sony A230 last year and have been playing with it on and off since. Been reading up and sort of understanding all about lenses, shutter speed, aperture, iso etc.

Now, it was my engagement do a few weeks back so decided to stump up cash for a SONY DT 18-250mm f3.5-6.3 Lens beforehand so could get a few photos on the day without having to get right close up using kit lens (plus had also been been bit annoyed by lack of zoom during family holiday previously). Our do was indoors, had quite a few windows and was quite well lit. Had passed camera to a friend who could take pics however a lot (most) of the photos happened to come out blurred or grainy :( Good job we getting pro photographer for big day!

Now, having read up more and more, I'm thinking that for that particular occasion I bought the wrong type of lens. My friend was taking full use of the zoom and from my very limited knowledge I'm guessing the lack of light caused camera to bump up ISO (hence some grainy pics) and slow the shutter speed (hence blurry photos). So we came out with not many good pics of the day :(

Was that what is most likely to have happened - what would have been suggested with that setup? Or could it not really have been done with such a lens?

Anyways, few days ago my nieces were round, beautiful 7 months old twins... so out came the camera. Was taking photos indoors again - on the floor and it was bright day and was what i thought, quite a bit of light in the room.

I wasn't taking advantage of zoom as was close up... now with flash, the photos looked wrong and artificial. Without flash, photos were becoming blurred (slow shutter speed I'm guessing) so I ended up missing another opportunity of some great pics. :(

A lot of my photos are portrait style or group shots (family) and a lot are also of landscape (on holiday etc). Is there any advice anyone can give to help this newbie photographer? (preferably without further investment)

Just feel stupid at times knowing I got what cost me over £700 worth of camera equipment and I still struggle to take what I used to think of normal and easy shots :(


Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 5:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 8:47 pm
Posts: 202
Location: Osijek
hi gsp,

it seems you have indoor problem with your 18-250mm lens. you see all lenses are marked with their focal length (18-250mm), and with an apreture nuber (f3.5-6.3). the f number is a measure of how open your hole in lens is that lets the light trough towards the sensor.. since it is actually a fraction number, the bigger the number is the smaller the opening in lens is thus allowing less light trough. on so the less light trough you need longer shutter speed and higher iso to make correct exposure and that introduces blur and grain..

now those 2 f numbers you have f3.5 and f6.3 are the smallest possible numbers that you can have when your lens is max zoomed in (f3.5) and max zoomed out (f6.3) so when your friend used zoom indoors it caused the apreture to be very small and it increased the shut. speed and iso..

if you look around the forum you will see that when people talk about indoor photography everybody talks about 50 or 35 mm lenses with that have no zoom possibility but have the smallest f number at f1.8 or even f1.4, these f numbers allow you to capture a lot of light into your camera indoors and increase your shutter speed and decrease your iso..

please take a moment to see this link
http://www.cameralabs.com/lenses/lens_buyers_guide/Sony_Alpha_lenses/Recommended_Sony_Alpha_lenses.shtml

that will take you to cameralabs sony lenses guide witch will explain most of your lens problems i believe [/url]

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 5:23 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Boca Raton, FL, USA
Quote:
Now, it was my engagement do a few weeks back so decided to stump up cash for a SONY DT 18-250mm f3.5-6.3 Lens beforehand so could get a few photos on the day without having to get right close up using kit lens (plus had also been been bit annoyed by lack of zoom during family holiday previously). Our do was indoors, had quite a few windows and was quite well lit. Had passed camera to a friend who could take pics however a lot (most) of the photos happened to come out blurred or grainy Good job we getting pro photographer for big day!


Well first off, not to insult your friend at all, but it's likely though he can take photos, he might not be highly knowledgeable about camera settings - a skilled photographer probably could have told you right from the beginning that this wasn't the optimal combination for that type of shooting, but also would have known to default to a higher ISO to keep the shutter speeds faster and the exposure proper - though higher ISO does produce more graininess, the graininess is usually more destructive and noticeable when the shot isn't properly exposed. And blur would only have occurred if the photog wasn't using a fast enough shutter speed. Honestly, you probably could have gotten by shot in A priority, held wide open at F6.3 or wider depending on the zoom amount, and an ISO manually set to 800 or 1600. Without knowing the exact lighting where you were, I can't say for sure, but that would be my guess based on my indoor shooting with that same lens.

Quote:
Now, having read up more and more, I'm thinking that for that particular occasion I bought the wrong type of lens. My friend was taking full use of the zoom and from my very limited knowledge I'm guessing the lack of light caused camera to bump up ISO (hence some grainy pics) and slow the shutter speed (hence blurry photos). So we came out with not many good pics of the day


Basically, yes. Though it is quite an excellent lens, and probably one of the best overall wide zoom travel lenses for all-purpose use, for specifically low light shooting and indoor shooting, the lens isn't optimal. It can do the job, if the camera settings are correct and the photographer takes some time to work the shot and nail the settings...but certainly if you wanted a lens that would be specifically designed to cope with that type of shooting, you would have had to spend some money for something 'faster', which is to say with a bigger aperture as denoted by the F-stop number being lower.

Quote:
Was that what is most likely to have happened - what would have been suggested with that setup? Or could it not really have been done with such a lens?


Again...it can be done to shoot indoors or in low light with such a lens and with your camera, but some care must be taken to get the settings right - which means proper exposure is paramount and manual setting of ISO and aperture is likely needed as Auto modes won't do it.[/quote]

Quote:
Anyways, few days ago my nieces were round, beautiful 7 months old twins... so out came the camera. Was taking photos indoors again - on the floor and it was bright day and was what i thought, quite a bit of light in the room. Without flash, photos were becoming blurred (slow shutter speed I'm guessing) so I ended up missing another opportunity of some great pics.


You really would be best to read a bit about exposure - how to manipulate shutter and aperture, and when to raise ISO to stay within certain shutter speed parameters when shooting a moving subject - so you can set to Aperture priority or Shutter priority as needed and get those shots. Your camera can do it, and though that lens isn't a low light lens, you can use it with the right camera settings. if you know you're going to be taking many such shots, you can look at picking up a fast prime - you can get cheap Minolta 50mm F1.7 lenses for under $100 used - and those will be indoor kings in lower light...but then you'll have to read up and prepare yourself for shooting with very shallow depth of field!

Here are some old photos I have with a cousin camera to yours...I used to have a Sony A300, which came just before the A230 and shares the same basic sensor and abilities...and these were using the same Sony 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 lens...these might give you some idea of watching the shutter speeds when shooting indoors with moving subjects but you can get usable results from that camera and lens in low light with movement:

Image

Image

Pick up an el cheapo 50mm like I mentioned above, and you don't have the zoom ability...but with the big aperture, you get much better low light ability. These shots with the 18-250mm lens would have required ISO6400 to get the same shutter speed...not even possible on the A300 I was using...but with an F1.7 lens I could shoot at ISO1600 and get handholdable shutter speeds without blur:

Image

Image

Image

Notice the shots are able to get much better brightness and light, even though they were extremely dark? And only ISo1600 needed. Normally, ISO1600 on our cameras would be very grainy when a shot is underexposed - but that's where it becomes important to 'nail' the exposure - if you use the right aperture and shutter speed to achieve a properly exposed photo, then even the higher ISO levels will come out much cleaner and with much less grain and noise. Noise is mostly the result of shadow and underexposure.

Hope that helps a bit!

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Sony DSLR-A580 / Sony 18-250mm / Minolta 50mm F1.7 / Sigma 30mm F1.4 / Tamron 10-24mm / Tamron 150-600mm / Tamron 90mm F2.8 macro / Minolta 300mm F4 APO
Sony A6000 / 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 / 55-210mm F4-6.3 / 10-18mm F4 / 35mm F1.8 / 16mm F2.8 / via manual adapter, lots of Pentax K mount, Konica K/AR mount, and Leica M mount manual lenses

Galleries:
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 1:44 pm 
Thank you both for your replies... Helped loads :)


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