General question about focus.

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by b3nfather, Dec 29, 2006.

  1. b3nfather

    b3nfather TPF Noob!

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    Hello, im just an amatuer photogrpaher with a general quetion here. I have a Casio Exilim EX-Z60. I find that if I switch the flash off, and jus take a picture using the natural light, however steady I hold it I can never get as sharp non-blurred picture as I do when the flash is on.
    With the flash on I can take great sharp cystal clear photos, but with the flash off it is almost impossible to get a non-blurred, even if only slightly, photo.
    I can understand that if I have a long exposure time, like on the night time setting, that unless its reasting on something completely still its going to be blurred, but even with a quick photo it is difficult. Basically are there any tips or ways that you more advanced photographers know to prevent this from happening?
    On my camera I notice you can either press down hard on the snapper to take it straight away or press it softly and it seems to take it slower. I dont know what this is, maybe something to help improve the sharpness of the photo? Any help appreciated.
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    I don't know if you camera shows you the exposure information...but if it does, then check it out. The exposure time (shutter speed) is usually measured in fractions of a second. To get sharp, non blurred images, you need a fast shutter speed. The amount of camera shake and the length of the lens are factors as well. The flash photos are sharp because the flash is very, very short...likely less than 1/1000 of a second.

    Back to shutter speed...1/10 of a second may seem like a fast exposure...but it's not. 1/10 will likely give you some blur. 1/60 is better and 1/125 is better yet. Some cameras go up to as fast as 1/4000 or 1/8000 of a second.

    Now you can't just make the shutter speed faster...because that will let in less light and your image would be underexposed. To compensate for less exposure time...you have to open the aperture (your camera probably does this automatically)...but the problem is that there is a limit to how far you can open the aperture. So once it's open as big as it can...the only way to make the exposure...is to keep the shutter speed longer....which causes blur.

    The third variable is ISO...the higher you set the ISO...the faster your shutter speed can get...but the trade off is digital noise.

    To solve all of these problems...just add light to the scene. If there is enough light...then the shutter doesn't have to be open as long. So go outside into the day light. Or, you could use a tripod...but that won't help to freeze moving subjects...it will just eliminate camera shake.
     
  3. b3nfather

    b3nfather TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the explanation and advice, I will look into the shutter speed I am using. :)
     
  4. Boxurian

    Boxurian TPF Noob!

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    My hands tend to shake a little bit so things don't show like I want them to. I will go in after in an editing program like Photoshop Elements and then try the sharpen feature
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Sharpening with software isn't really a cure for blurry or out of focus photos. It can help the image to appear slightly sharper...but it's really best to get it sharp when you shoot it.
     

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