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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 4:05 am 
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AnderssonPhoto wrote:
pretty much sharp all the way when I tried the Leica 50mm Summicron regardless of aperture ^^


For $7000 it'd better be!

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:38 am 
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oldCarlos wrote:
Do you notice images `less sharp`than you'd like, across the whole range? (wide-normal-zoom)
Are shutter speeds fast enough Vs any movement in your subjects?
Is there enough light to keep ISO low enough so as not to introduce too much noise (maybe iso 800 .... or ideally less?)

Have you tried the different AF settings? If you want focus on a particular area, have you tried `spot/centre`, rather than Auto? (or vice versa)


Hi, Carlos, thanks for responding. I should have made it clear that I have a fixed lens camera, because I know that different lenses have different strengths and weaknesses. One of the things that makes it difficult to even accurately describe the problem is that it seems it can happen any time and with any camera - it comes and it goes, and it's hard to tell why.

As far as I can tell, it's not dependent on zoom or light levels. In fact I can say that the P7700 is actually very good in low light (good for a compact, that is).

I'll try posting some examples that I took when I first got it (I'm assuming that you use the "Img" button). The images were taken in auto mode using the default settings. I can't remember the details since I was concentrating on other things at the time. I was using a monopod, so I would assume that camera shake wouldn't be an issue (I got good results even in near-dark conditions).

It's interesting that you mention AF. I have a gradually growing suspicion that ANY camera using AF may be prone to occasional blur, since no AF system will be foolproof or perfect, even top-notch DSLRs. If that was one of the causes of less-than-sharp images, it would explain the elusive and intermittent nature of the problem.
I haven't got round to trying different AF modes or manual focus, and that may turn out to be the answer. If it is, it may be possible to fine-tune the technique by experimenting with DOF and aperture, as in the original query.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 3:33 pm 
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Hi Ron.
Autofocus should be pretty good tbh, providing there are obvious lines of contrast for it to pick up on. I think if you try out the `spot/centre weighted` setting, or even `face recognition` if you're taking pics of people, it might help.

Yeah if you get chance to post a couple of pics it might give a better idea of any issues. (i'm not the least bit techie btw, but some of the more experienced posters might be able to chip in with some good tips/help )

Cheers, Carl.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 10:56 pm 
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Plymer's truly excellent images are good examples of why sharpness and precise focus are not the most important factors in making an interesting, memorable, desirable image. :) A soul-less robot can compose and record a clinically sharp and precisely focused image; it is the human photographer that creates a work of art.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 11:09 pm 
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Wow, thanks so much for the mad props Rex :D

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:30 pm 
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I've learned quite a bit from this thread, but I think that Plymer's reminder of the right perspective is the most valuable lesson.

Haven't sussed out what a third party server is yet, but I'm still trying.

One of the things that prompted me to start this thread is the fact that I'm a long way from being alone in wanting sharper pics, and wanting to know what to do or avoid doing. From what I've seen, that group includes people who have no shortage of expensive kit. In fact I think it's fair to say that there can't be many people who have never been disappointed by a lack of sharpness in their pics. As a general problem, it has many causes, but it seems it can still happen to those who know most of the DOs and DON'Ts.

Would I be right in thinking that if sensors become more sensitive (without incurring increased noise levels), the technique being discussed (small aperture for increased sharpness) would become more viable since aperture could then be reduced without having to use unfeasibly long exposure times?
And was I right when I suggested that the focus (excuse the pun) has gone off this technique because of digital photography (due mainly to wanting to avoid high ISOs because of the increased noise)?

There I go again - more than one question. Please feel free to comment on whatever strikes a chord.


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