Dark Pictures-Canon 20D

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Marge, May 6, 2005.

  1. Marge

    Marge Guest

    Hi:

    I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the camera.

    When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a living
    room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim but
    adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done in
    the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the rest"
    ..

    You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which is
    want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    without any processing.

    This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point and
    shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    processing them.

    My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    from anyone who has experienced this.

    Thank you in advance.
    Marge, May 6, 2005
    #1
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  2. Marge

    Guest

    I'm probably not the best person to answer as I don't have the 20D -
    but *which* `basic zone mode` were you using? I think some of those
    modes are weighted towards things that conflict with indoor shooting
    under incandescent lighting... Does the camera underexpose outdoor
    images as well, in all modes or just some?

    Forgive me for saying this, but in my opinion DSLR's like the 20D are
    probably not the best choice of camera, if all you want to is print
    directly from the memory card, not do any processing, and leave it in
    fully auto mode...

    But to solve your underexposure problem you *should* be able to do it
    by selecting the best mode for that purpose, using a high ISO setting,
    and maybe tweaking the brightness/contrast settings (if you can do that
    in those 'modes').

    If you do a lot of this sort of thing, why not get a decent
    on-camera-bounce-flash setup? I presume you don't like the harshness
    of direct flash, otherwise the problem would not exist...
    , May 6, 2005
    #2
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  3. Marge

    Ryadia Guest

    Marge wrote:
    > Hi:
    >
    > I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the camera.
    >
    > When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a living
    > room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim but
    > adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done in
    > the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    > the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the rest"
    > .
    >
    > You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which is
    > want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    > brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    > $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    > without any processing.
    >
    > This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point and
    > shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    > processing them.
    >
    > My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    > from anyone who has experienced this.
    >
    > Thank you in advance.
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >

    Change the exposure mode from multi point (which exposes for the
    brightest part) to another mode like area average or centre average.
    While you are at it, change the focus mode from multi point to centre
    point and what you point at will be in focus.

    If you use the symbols on the dial to help you choose the right
    combination, you'll get the results you have. Try using the 'P' mode and
    my suggestion. Eventually you will discover the functions allow you to
    adjust for contrast and exposure so you can indeed print from the card
    and produce very nice results.

    Don't be afraid of the custom functions. Just read about them and if you
    don't like what you've done, re-set them to defaults and start again.
    The 20D is a near perfect camera for shooting at events and printing
    from the card to a non-connected printer. It just needs it's custom
    functions set for that purpose.
    Ryadia, May 6, 2005
    #3
  4. Marge

    Skip M Guest

    Welcome to the world of ETT-L II. There is a constant undercurrent of
    grumping from 20D owners, and some Rebel and 1D mkII owners, too, about
    consistent underexposure with either the built in flash or Canon own branded
    flashes. There are two solutions, or actually three. Shoot in manual,
    using a shoe mounted flash, shoot with your Flash Exposure Compensation
    dialed up somewhere between 1 1/3 and 2 stops, or use an non-Canon flash.
    My wife and I get abysmal results with Canon flashes ( I won't go into the
    details, but the flash defaults to fill with any ambient light at all) and
    excellent results with Quantums, which, unfortunately run about $1000 for a
    flash set up. But I've heard of others getting excellent results from
    Sunpak, Vivitar and Metz flashes, which run somewhere between $150 and $350,
    depending on flash power.
    BTW, avoid the "Basic" modes, they cripple the camera too much. If you want
    the camera to do your thinking for you, use the "program" mode over on the
    "Creative" side of the command dial. There, you have options for metering
    and exposure, not to mention expanded parameters and custom functions, not
    available on the "Basic" modes.

    --
    Skip Middleton
    http://www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
    "Marge" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi:
    >
    > I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the
    > camera.
    >
    > When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a living
    > room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim
    > but
    > adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done
    > in
    > the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    > the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the
    > rest"
    > .
    >
    > You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which is
    > want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    > brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    > $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    > without any processing.
    >
    > This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point
    > and
    > shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    > processing them.
    >
    > My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    > from anyone who has experienced this.
    >
    > Thank you in advance.
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Skip M, May 6, 2005
    #4
  5. Marge

    Mark B. Guest

    "Marge" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi:
    >
    > I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the
    > camera.
    >
    > When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a living
    > room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim
    > but
    > adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done
    > in
    > the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    > the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the
    > rest"
    > .
    >
    > You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which is
    > want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    > brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    > $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    > without any processing.
    >
    > This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point
    > and
    > shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    > processing them.
    >
    > My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    > from anyone who has experienced this.
    >
    > Thank you in advance.
    >


    A point 'n shoot the 20D is not. What ISO did the camera set? I have to
    wonder how high of an ISO it will automatically set even in room lighting.
    Believe it or not, lighting that may appear adequate to our eyes can still
    benefit from an external flash. You didn't mention one, so I assume you
    weren't using one. The 18-55 lens isn't overly fast, so even wide open it
    may require ISO 800 or 1600 w/o any flash.

    Mark
    Mark B., May 6, 2005
    #5
  6. Marge wrote:
    > Hi:
    >
    > I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the
    > camera.
    >
    > When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a
    > living room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The
    > lighting is dim but adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps.
    > All the shooting is done in the Basic Zone Modes where everything is
    > set automatically. To quote from the manual "You just press the
    > shutter button, and the camera does the rest" .
    >


    I have a 20D and I would not recommend it for a point and shoot camera.
    I love my camera, but why spend all that money if you just want a point and
    shoot?

    That said, I often use the "P" function and have no problem with
    exposure. In fact I don't have problems with exposure on any of the
    settings.

    Did the flash activate? What mode setting were you using. It may not
    have been a good choice for the situation. Could you post a couple of
    photos as they were prior to any editing and provide us a link so we could
    see them?

    Are you sure they really are underexposed. Did you try printing one?


    --
    Joseph Meehan

    Dia duit
    Joseph Meehan, May 6, 2005
    #6
  7. Marge

    Ed Velez Guest

    I can vouche for that! I am contemplating switching the 580 to manual or
    just slap on the ole Vivitar 285HV. That has no problem lighting up any
    subject or room.


    "Skip M" <> wrote in message
    news:aNBee.1361$eU.616@fed1read07...
    > Welcome to the world of ETT-L II. There is a constant undercurrent of
    > grumping from 20D owners, and some Rebel and 1D mkII owners, too, about
    > consistent underexposure with either the built in flash or Canon own
    > branded flashes. There are two solutions, or actually three. Shoot in
    > manual, using a shoe mounted flash, shoot with your Flash Exposure
    > Compensation dialed up somewhere between 1 1/3 and 2 stops, or use an
    > non-Canon flash. My wife and I get abysmal results with Canon flashes ( I
    > won't go into the details, but the flash defaults to fill with any ambient
    > light at all) and excellent results with Quantums, which, unfortunately
    > run about $1000 for a flash set up. But I've heard of others getting
    > excellent results from Sunpak, Vivitar and Metz flashes, which run
    > somewhere between $150 and $350, depending on flash power.
    > BTW, avoid the "Basic" modes, they cripple the camera too much. If you
    > want the camera to do your thinking for you, use the "program" mode over
    > on the "Creative" side of the command dial. There, you have options for
    > metering and exposure, not to mention expanded parameters and custom
    > functions, not available on the "Basic" modes.
    >
    > --
    > Skip Middleton
    > http://www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
    > "Marge" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> Hi:
    >>
    >> I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the
    >> camera.
    >>
    >> When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a
    >> living
    >> room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim
    >> but
    >> adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done
    >> in
    >> the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    >> the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the
    >> rest"
    >> .
    >>
    >> You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which
    >> is
    >> want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    >> brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    >> $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    >> without any processing.
    >>
    >> This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point
    >> and
    >> shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    >> processing them.
    >>
    >> My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    >> from anyone who has experienced this.
    >>
    >> Thank you in advance.
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>

    >
    >
    Ed Velez, May 6, 2005
    #7
  8. Marge

    Zippy Guest

    I've has this same problem when using the flash.
    Exposures always seem too dark.
    This if from the on board flash or a 380EX.
    Seems like Photoshop has to help.
    Did we get "bum" units??
    My old G3 still works great with the buit in flash or the 380EX attached to
    the hotshoe.



    "Marge" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi:
    >
    > I have a Canon 20D with the 18-55mm lens that was supplied with the
    > camera.
    >
    > When taking pictures at family birthday parties and gatherings in a living
    > room and dining room my pictures come out very dark. The lighting is dim
    > but
    > adequate with overhead lighting and table lamps. All the shooting is done
    > in
    > the Basic Zone Modes where everything is set automatically. To quote from
    > the manual "You just press the shutter button, and the camera does the
    > rest"
    > .
    >
    > You certainly cannot print directly from the memory card however, which is
    > want I want to do. Every picture has to be processed to increase the
    > brightness. I've taken pictures in the same surroundings before with a
    > $50.00 digital camera and the pictures come out bright enough to print
    > without any processing.
    >
    > This is not a simple camera but at these affairs I'm using it as a point
    > and
    > shoot. I take about one hundred pictures and I don't want to spend hours
    > processing them.
    >
    > My question is whether it's me or the camera? I would appreciate feedback
    > from anyone who has experienced this.
    >
    > Thank you in advance.
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Zippy, May 13, 2005
    #8
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