Sony a-380 Blur!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by stoi689, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. stoi689

    stoi689 TPF Noob!

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    Hello everybody.

    I'm a complete DSLR novice! As a boxing writer I got fed up with my Casio digital camera missing all the best shots and giving me a grainy image, so after weeks of careful consideration I went for the Sony a-380 mainly when the shop owner assured me it would be perfect for my boxing work, even under less bright ringside lighting and using no flash.

    I bought it yesterday for a media workout that takes place tomorrow and tested it out on my son running about last night and my wife clapping, basically motion pictures and to my horror they are all badly blurred :grumpy:

    I put it into sports mode as instructed in the guide book but still no joy.

    After fishing this excellent forum I see things about shutter speed, ISO, Aperture, shaking etc all of which would maybe effect my blurring. Is the problem mine or is this camera just not very good? More importantly will I be able to get some quality snaps at that workout! (Which will be in the daytime).

    Any tips or advice is MASSIVELY appreciated. I can see myself spending a lot of time in here :sexywink:
     
  2. boogschd

    boogschd TPF Noob!

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    i suggest a fast zoom lens :D

    an f2.8 something .. not familiar with sony lenses srry

    btw welcome to the forum :D
     
  3. fokker

    fokker No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Off the top of my head the 380 has built-in image stabilisation which will help you a bit.

    To avoid blur you need a fast shutter speed - this means that the sensor isn't exposed to light for very long so to give the amount of light it needs to produce an image of acceptable brightness you need to use a large aperture (low f number - probably you can only go down to f3.5 or so but the lower the better). Also you may want to use a high ISO speed (greater sensitivity to light), the tradeoff to high iso being image noise/grain - but this is still better than motion blur.
     
  4. stoi689

    stoi689 TPF Noob!

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    Brilliant stuff. I can't wait to get home and try out these things. I was gutted when the camera seemingly wouldn't work so hopefully I can rectify my errors and learn how to operate it properly!
     
  5. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I believe you may need to learn few things first regarding "Shutter speed", "Aperture" and "ISO". Especially their relationship and how they affect your exposure.

    Pick up a book called "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson.


    In your situation, motion blur usually caused by low shutter speed. In order to use a faster shutter speed and still able to have a properly exposed photo, you may need to use a wider aperture (lower F number in your camera aperture setting), use a higher ISO settings or both.

    But the problem is the lens usually shipped with the camera generally not fast enough. In other words, the max. aperture of the lens is not wide enough. So you may have no choice by bump up the ISO settings.

    However, the higher the ISO settings, the noisier the photos. Of course, if you have one of those High ISO king such as Nikon D700 or D3 will be nice. You may want to try to use a higher ISO settings and see if the photo is acceptable.


    Of course, if the environment has enough light, that's a different story.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2009
  6. EleanorW

    EleanorW TPF Noob!

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    Fokker is correct - Sony has built in camera shake. What kit lens did the camera come with? The camera should be fine, as everyone else has mentioned, it'll be settings you control that will make your pictures better.
     
  7. benlonghair

    benlonghair TPF Noob!

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    This, without a doubt. I got it thinking that I understood exposure. Turns out I really didn't. It's not so much that I didn't know how each point of the exposure triangle worked, I just didn't have a real firm grasp on how they interacted.
     
  8. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    IS does absolutely nothing to stop motion. Boxing is a sport of fast motion. This requires fast shutter speeds.

    Sports photography is my main interest. If you look at my gear list you will see the bodies and glass I use. All fast with good AF capabilities. My gear is built around a sports as the main focus and serves me well with other interests.

    A couple of things to do to improve your keeper rate. First, use one focus point. Usually I use the center point, but in certain situations I will use one of the inside ring points. This cuts down focus hunt that occurs with multiple focus point on fast action.

    Second, get your focus off of the shutter button and onto a button on the back of the camera if this is possible. You will have to check your manual. This will allow you to track the action constantly and get a split second faster shutter response than using the shutter button as your focus button.

    Action photography requires fast shutter speeds. Fast shutter speeds means getting the camera out of what I call the Idiot modes and into Aperture value, Shutter value or full manual.

    First let me say that if you are using one of the other modes, I am not calling you an idiot. I call modes like "portrait," "sunset," "sports," etc idiot modes because the camera has for each of these modes a set formula of aperture, shutter speed and ISO to work from. It has no clue what you are actually shooting or the problems you are encountering and can not make the proper adjustments. That is where the human brain comes in.

    If you do not feel comfortable shooting in manual then I would suggest you use Aperture value. For low light sports you need wide apertures to gather as much light as possible. If you looked at my gear you see that there is not a lens that is slower than f2.8. For boxing I would suggest that you look into a prime lens that is fast. Your subjects have a lot less room to move than say basketball players, football players etc. A prime lens will be faster usually and will cover the ring. You will have to decide what focal length you want.

    Set you camera to Aperture value and shoot your lens wide open or very close to wide open. To stop the motion blur you now need to get a shutter speed to do so. You want a shutter speed of at least 1/250th of a second. 1/320 to 1/500 would be better. To achieve this you need to crank up the ISO. You might get some noise in you shots from higher ISO but a noisy shot with the action frozen is much better than a shot with no noise of a big lump of blur.

    Finally, take some time, got to the gym an practice. Just like the athletes train, a good sports photographer does as well. I shoot college sports here in the midwest. I have been going to different college football and soccer practices to get my skills back up to par for this season. Good luck and enjoy.
     
  9. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    Image Stabilization will only hurt you here. Best to turn it off.

    edit: beat me to it.
     
  10. stoi689

    stoi689 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for all the great advice. With regards to my equipment I think I have just the basics. The lens that came was an 18-55mm (does that sounds right?) and I bought an additional lens on the shop assistant's advice: a Tamron AF70-300 F/4-5.6 for long distance shots.

    gryphonslair99, the fact that you are a sports photographer gave me confidence. Like you said practise makes perfect and I will be going down the local gyms to photograph sparring, padwork and bags for experience and getting used to motion shots.

    I am also scouring Amazon for the exposure book. Cheers guys :thumbup:
     
  11. stoi689

    stoi689 TPF Noob!

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    I changed my settings to:

    Aperture - F4.5 (the lowest it would do)
    Shutter speed - 1/4000
    ISO - 3200 (the highest it would do)
    Aspect Ratio - 3:2 or 16:9???
    Quality: RAW, RAW & JPEG, Fine, Standard??

    Yet....the image is still so dark you can see nothing :grumpy:

    Still tweaking away!
     
  12. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    You'll need a lot of light for 1/4000 shutter speed. Are you paying attention to the light meter in the viewfinder?
     

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