Canon PS 8 megs...lower light photos..advice?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by courtneyclv, Sep 20, 2008.

  1. courtneyclv

    courtneyclv TPF Noob!

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    Hi,
    I recently took a vacation and took photos with my Canon PS SD870IS

    I am never sure how to take photos when there is natural light, cloudy conditions, outside or indoors. Photos turn out great when the flash is on and I am in the auto mode. If I turn the flash off though..I get a red warning and yes, the photos are grainy and blurry. I tried different things in these light conditions...

    I attempted to use the manual mode and put the white balance on 'cloudy' and 'vivid' 'my colors' and auto ISO..but my green/foliage came out very yellow toned and there is grainyness in the photos. In the vivid mode the photos printed TOO vivid..people are orangy/red and trees and plants are too yellowish.

    I also tried the 'indoor' setting and and 'foliage' setting. I was in the jungle and the monkeys are out of focus and blurry..and they were not even moving much. I have one good shot of the monkey..but that is when the flash did go on..which scared him of course!

    I also tried other options like autofocus, image stabilization always on, no flash, and face detection..still a bit of noise/grainyness. I never adjusted the ISO myself..always let the camera do it..was this the problem? I am new to adjusting everything myself..I usually just point and shoot but am tired of mediocre grainy photos. I tried the Face Detection AiAF and center AF. Never sure what to choose when I only have a few seconds to shoot...

    Anways..i messed with so many options..I am wondering what is the best for indoor or outdoor natural light (not sunny) I am confusing myself now!!!

    I also took some videos in the jungle at the 640 fps mode,cloudy white balance and again, grainy.

    Thanks!
    Courtney
     
  2. potownrob

    potownrob TPF Noob!

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    I have come to the conclusion that the smaller Canon Powershot SD cameras are terrible in low light situations, not that P&S cameras are known to be good in low light in general. I had an SD 630 that was just terrible in most anything short of well-lit outdoor settings. Even with the flash, only very close-up subjects are well lit (weak flash). My sister has that camera now and reaffirms this every time she puts an album online. Don't bother with Hi-ISO either; just makes the shots super grainy. Maybe the A series Powershots are better in low light. I know my Panasonic FX35 is much better in low light, though it doesn't come close to the low light performance of my Panasonic FZ7, let alone that of any dSLR.
     
  3. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry TPF Noob!

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    sounds to me like you dont have too many options here, in low light situations its either high iso or fast lens, high iso will give you grainy shots, and even a fast lens on a moving subject may not give a fast enough shutter speed to freeze motion,which in turn produces camera shake, hence blurry images. As you also found, flash scares animals so really the only option is high iso. Try using noise ninja or similar program to deal with the grain problem and turn off your "vivid" setting, do all post processing of this sort on your PP program, its a case of making the most of a bad job really, even for a pro, a decent image is better than none at all. Hazzo
     
  4. courtneyclv

    courtneyclv TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the advice. :)

    What do you believe would be the best option for my situations? Not even for monkeys or somewhere darker like a forest..but just indoors (not dark but just lower natural light) or on a cloudy day?

    Do you know of any sites that can help me with this? This sucks..just got this camera and did a TON of reviewing online to choose it. Thought it was good..maybe it is..but just not on a cloudy day!?


    I will say that I have printed with Walmart.com and had good results. I just looked at the photos on my pc compared to actual photos..the ones on my pc look a lot better. The greens look green, not yellow..and people's skintones look more 'normal' not orangy.

    Still the noise though..

    wbs
    Courtne
     

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