Grainy Photos?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by My3Boys, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. My3Boys

    My3Boys TPF Noob!

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    Are these photos grainy? What causes that? Is it my lens, the lighting, an unsteady hand, or just my inexperience? Is there anything I can do to edit them to make them less grainy?

    I'm really trying to learn how to take better photos with my new Rebel XT. Any suggestions/comments/criticism is greatly appreciated! Thanks! :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I know...that random foot from his brother is rather distracting!
    [​IMG]
     
  2. akazoly

    akazoly TPF Noob!

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    - To avoid noise use the lowest ISO number (of course with lowest ISO you need light).
    - Don't use a small shutter speed, under 10.
    - Try to avoid camera shake at small shutter speeds. Use a good tripod at low light!
     
  3. My3Boys

    My3Boys TPF Noob!

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    Okay, thanks for those tips! :)

    So....I guess this means I need to get out of 'auto' mode then? LOL! I'm just not brave enough yet...need to practice going on my own with the manual setting!
     
  4. akazoly

    akazoly TPF Noob!

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    I think manual is more flexible. The light meter is your friend in manual (check your camera manual).

    And finally manual is not hard to learn. You need to know a bit about: aperture, shutter speed and use the light meter on camera.
     
  5. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    They look perfect to me.
     
  6. djrichie28

    djrichie28 TPF Noob!

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    Try the 'P' mode if you are not yet comfortable setting exposure. "p" will allow you to set your ISO and then the camera will set the shutter and aperture to obtain the correct exposure. "P" is the closest to auto you can get. Giving you just enough control.

    But I must agree with the above comment that they look fine. Can't see the noise.
     
  7. Sandspur

    Sandspur TPF Noob!

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    quick answer. They look pretty good to me. But do this anyhow. Then after you become really comfortable, you can use other modes.

    1. Use P, Program mode. It's still fully automatic, but far more sophisticated than Auto and offers more options. Shooting in Auto is worst possible thing you can do to your photography, and to the possibility of learning something. Ultimately, you'll probably end up switching between Aperture and Shutter Priority or Manual.

    2. Choose 400 ISO and leave it there - indoors, outdoors, flash, no flash. And, NO, it won't be too grainy! People say use the lowest ISO setting to reduce grain. BUT, in low light, a low ISO will cause as much digital noise as a high ISO, in fact, more.

    3. Stay with Auto White Balance. It's right most of the time.

    4. Shoot jpg, not RAW ... until you understand enough about density and color control, etc. to use it intelligently. Trust me on this: most people - including a lot of professionals - never need to use RAW.

    5. Always shoot at the highest possible jpg setting - both resolution and size.

    Of course, if you're going to do more than a little editing in post processing, you should convert the jpg original into a TIF or PSD copy.

    I hope some of this helps. I know some of these recommendations will fly in the face of some of the others who frequent this territory. And you'll probably hear from them.

    As you gain experience you'll develop your own working techniques.

    But it seems to me that you want to be taking good pix right now ... because those kids won't wait on you to become a better photographer before they start growing up.
     
  8. Jedo_03

    Jedo_03 TPF Noob!

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    Is it the effect of the narrow DOF he's talking about?
    Is what he's calling "grainy" the thrown-out-of-focus effect of an open aperture??
    Can't see any "grain" or much "noise" in any of these pics...
    Do you mean "out of focus..?"
    Jedo

    Edit - My3Boys - maybe a she... if so apologies...
     
  9. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Your Images are not grainy, I can show you grainy shots, I have thousands.

    What this looks like to me is Depth of Field issue stemming from AF target confusion.

    This is remedied by taking an additional half second prior to each shot to make sure the AF has found the correct target and locked before releasing the shutter.

    If you just point and shoot the AF tends to literally just guess and some times misses.
     
  10. My3Boys

    My3Boys TPF Noob!

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    Thanks so much for these tips! This is very helpful to me since I am still leaning about my camera, as I've only had it a few weeks. I will do some more experimenting today. Great suggestions! :)
    I am a woman! ;) And thanks for clarifying that 'grainy' versus 'out of focus' for me. I see now that they are out of focus rather than grainy/noisy.

    Ah, I see - Thanks so much! Would you mind terribly to post a 'grainy/noisy' shot for me so I can see what that does look like and tell me what causes it. I may be able to better avoid it then. We'll see! :)
    I really appreciate everyone taking time to comment on my photos and give me suggestions for improvement. That's why I'm here! GREAT! :mrgreen: I need much, much more practice to get the photos I'm really striving for.
     
  11. Battou

    Battou No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    There are two different types of grain in todays photography, there is film grain and Digital Noise. I am no expert on the latter but I can be of some use on the former. Contrary to popular belief they are not the same, but merely similar. They both appear as light and dark spots with in an aria of solid color, Picture if you will static on a television set, just not as drastic.

    What Sandspur said about ISO is a big factor in it. Film and sensor speeds have this effect. The Higher the speed the more noise or grain you will have, this is also exadgerated by the duration the shutter is open and extent of croping.

    Sadly I can't say I have anything, particurlarly good for comparison but to show Film grain, and odly enough I do not have any particularly noisy images.
    But to give an example of what grainy images look like:

    This was shot at ISO 400 onto film and un cropped
    [​IMG]

    This was shot at ISO 400 onto film and heavily cropped
    [​IMG]

    This was shot at ISO 800
    [​IMG]

    This was shot at ISO 800 onto Film over a long period of time
    [​IMG]

    There are other ways to get grain and noise but these are prolly the most common, High ISO and over cropping.
     
  12. My3Boys

    My3Boys TPF Noob!

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    Battou - thanks so much for those examples. I'm understanding that better now. :)
     

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