T3i jpeg presets

bobandcar

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What kind of presets for
Sharpness
Contrast
Saturation
Color tone

Are u guys using under the picture style menu?

I have had mine on auto and don't know what it picks.
Now my photos normally seem soft to me and wondering if this has something to do with that

T3i
18-55
55-250
 

pgriz

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Well, presets are somewhat of a crutch. You do have a picture style editor which allows you to customize your presets or styles, but if you want better results, you could consider shooting in RAW, and applying your adjustments using a photo editing software (such as DPP, GIMP, Lightroom, Photoshop, etc.).

Basically, shooting to JPG in camera means that the camera captures the image, then applies the processing steps represented in the Style profile, and then compresses it to JPG format, for final display/printing. During this processing/compression, it throws away up to 80% of the information in the image. If you want to make changes later, you are working with the 20% not thrown out.

Contrast that to working with RAW: The RAW file is much bigger because no information is thrown away. Contained in the RAW file is a small JPG thumbnail to which the
Styles ARE applied. When you inport the RAW file into a RAW processor, you have all the information that the camera had. In effect, you have a digital negative. Then, you use the editing programs to apply whatever changes you want, and the editing programs give you much more control than the camera does, over the final appearance. As a side benefit, the changes as stored as additional processing instructions, and the original image data is NOT changed or destroyed. After you finish making your editing adjustments, you can save the result as a JPG file for general viewing.
 

Big Mike

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I agree, don't worry so much about the picture style setting on the camera, and work out a good workflow where you can make those adjustments on your computer.
 
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bobandcar

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I shoot Jpeg for the majority of my shots. I do use raw if I am on a specific mission(ex:birds, landscapes)

Just wondering if it would be better for my jpegs to start using the picture style presets more to my advantage. That way there would be less post processing on my jpeg's.
 

bratkinson

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Your reference the pictures being soft from your T3i is possible being the result of the automatic focus picking the wrong subject to focus on. Carefully check your photos for where it's focusing in the pictures. What seems the sharpest point(s)? Also, when shooting, the camera will show which focus points are being selected (of 9) in the viewfinder when the shutter button is pressed slightly. When I'm shooting in Auto, I frequently have to release the shutter and try again to get my 60D to pick the focus points I want it to pick in single-shot focus mode (especially when there's people/objects/animals closer to the camera than what I want to focus on).

Alternatively, note that although the consumer-grade lenses on your camera produce very good pictures, they won't be drop-dead sharp pictures like those produced by the "L" series of Canon lenses.

Also, per the Canon user manual for your camera at: Canon U.S.A. : Consumer & Home Office : EOS Rebel T3i 18-55mm IS II Kit on page 80-81, it shows 'generally' the jpeg adjustments it will make under each of the picture styles available in your camera. If you don't have the manual, you can download it from there to your computer.
 
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pgriz

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Picture styles give the camera control over four attributes: Sharpness, Contrast, Saturation, and Colour Tone. All of these are applied to the image being taken, in a global way, and the end result is encoded in the JPG format (along with the discarding of about 80% of "non-essential" information). If, after taking a look at the image on your computer that the image needs adjustment, you will very little to work with. But if you shoot perfect pictures all the time and under exactly the same conditions, where no further adjustment is necessary, then using picture styles is a great time-saver. Personally, I don't know what adjustment is needed for a specific image until I load it onto my computer and have a chance to examine it in detail - then the editing tools allow me to extract the most out of the image I have captured.

As for your images looking soft, bradkinson mentioned one possible source: the camera selects a different focus point than your subject. There are other sources as well: too shallow a DOF, shutter speed too low allowing camera and/or subject movement. It is also possible that your camera is front or back-focusing. The quality of consumer-level glass can also contribute to softness, but to see this you need to pixel-peep as the overall quality of images from consumer glass is usually very good.

Edit: Looking at some of your other posts, you say you're trying to shoot birds and are using the 55-250mm zoom at its limit. To prevent camera shake, you need to shoot at about 1/300 or 1/500 sec, and your aperture will probably be almost fully open, which gives you a very narrow depth-of-field. If you are shooting birds surrounded by foilage, and you are using the camera's autofocus, then the camera may be focusing on the foilage and not the bird. That would put your bird target outside the narrow DOF, and therefore "soft".
 
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bobandcar

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I almost always am shooting in aperture priority mode. But I have my picture style to auto.

I have thought about the autofocus points above and i have noticed sometimes it focuses on something else.

Here's the softness kicker, I have used manual focus with live view on 10x and still see the softness.
 

pgriz

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I almost always am shooting in aperture priority mode. But I have my picture style to auto.

I have thought about the autofocus points above and i have noticed sometimes it focuses on something else.

Here's the softness kicker, I have used manual focus with live view on 10x and still see the softness.

Are you shooting on a tripod? Are you using the center AF point? If you ARE using liveview at 10x, you should have the lens AF set to OFF, so that after you acquire the focus manually, it doesn't re-focus on something else. As well, with the camera on a tripod, there is less chance of either camera shake, or focus drift to be a problem.

If you have used the camera on a sturdy tripod, AF off, IS off, manual focus using live-view at 10x, shutter triggered either by remote or by 2-second delay, and you still get softness, then it could be the lens. But you have to make sure all the other possible causes have been accounted for and ruled out.

How do you know you are getting softness? Are there parts of the image that are sharper than the point you are focusing on, or are you using another criteria for determining softness?
 

belial

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It could somewhat be picture style. Just judging from what other canon Jpeg shooters have said. Try customizing whatever mode you're using and crank up the sharpness a bit. Canon by default tends not to add much sharpening. Tough to tell of that's the problem without more details and/or seeing the pics
 

bratkinson

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Another "soft photo" cause not mentioned previously is a cheap filter in front of the lens. Using the hood instead of a "protective filter" will almost always produce sharper results and provide better protection from bumps and scrapes.
 
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bobandcar

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I had the filter thread awhile ago and sold the uv filters.

I will do some test shooting with my current settings this weekend and post a few examples.

I will only pose ones that were on a tripod.
 
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bobandcar

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All on tripod, manual focus with 10X live view.






1 $_MG_3837.JPG 1/125 f/5.6 iso 100 55mm on 18-55is
2$_MG_3836.JPG 1/180 f/4.5 iso 100 34mm on 18-55is
3$_MG_3835.JPG 1/250 f3.5 iso 100 18mm on 18-55is
4$_MG_3834.JPG 1/180 f/5.6 iso 100 250mm on 55-250is
5$_MG_3833.JPG 1/250 f/4.5 iso 100 135mm on 55-250is
6$_MG_3832.JPG 1/250 f/4 iso 100 55mm on 55-250is
 

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