Re: Focus problems on SP570UZ at full 20x zoom?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mark Thomas, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. Mark Thomas

    Mark Thomas Guest

    DudeBoyz wrote:
    > I'm having some issues when I try to use the camera at the full
    > 20x zoom provided. They primarily seem to be related to
    > auto-focusing. I'm not sure if the shots are coming out blurry
    > when zoomed all the way in at 20x because of the Image
    > Stabilization, the AF Illuminator, the flash or what

    First up, almost every 'superzoom' has a compromised long end - the lens
    won't be as sharp as at its 'sweet spot/s' and will probably have
    reduced contrast. Are you viewing at 100%? Your expectations may be
    too high.

    Second, IS only gives you a bit of additional hand-holding ability. The
    old rule of using a shutter speed of about 1 over the focal length (35mm
    equiv) may only be helped by a stop or two. Check your exif - if you
    are shooting at say 500mm with IS on, your shutter speed still needs to
    be up around 1/250, imo, or you may encounter camera shake.

    Motion blur/camera shake *looks* different to out of focus - why not
    post a small crop (at 100% view) of the images and let us take a peek at
    the problem?

    Third - because your lens operates at a smaller aperture at the long end
    the AF will be less reliable, especially in low light. And your AF
    illuminator and flash will have a limited range (check manual).
    Mark Thomas, Sep 8, 2008
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  2. Mark Thomas

    Mark Thomas Guest

    DudeBoyz wrote:
    > Thank you for the well thought out reply. I appreciate the tips.

    Thanks for the appreciation!

    > In most cases, zooming in all the way to 20x just isn't necessary
    > for me, but I was trying to "torture test" the thing to find the
    > limitations.

    Better to find out about what your camera can do *before* you actually
    need it, so keep it up!

    > Is it possible that changing the metering type might aid in
    > preventing the problem?

    No. I can't see any way that changing your metering could help the AF
    or lens sharpness! Tripod, yes. Lots of light, yes. Slow, smooth
    half-press, yes. Backing off from the full >500mm focal length, yes... (O:

    > I have left it at the default ESP, but
    > there are two other modes. The "dot" mode means that the AF
    > target mark area is metered, while the "dot-in-circle" mode
    > meters a wider area.

    (This may also help a little with your other question...) I had an
    older model Olympus (C8080 - great camera!), and the ESP exposure thingy
    worked well for most general purpose metering - I can't claim to be an
    expert, but I got the impression it was a little like Nikon's matrix
    metering (which is a good thing..). The dot (spot-metering) mode is
    useful where you might have a background that will throw off the
    exposure, while dot-in-circle (centre-weighted-average) is the 'common'
    sort of metering (not as good as ESP, I found).

    But, the *iESP* thing - which is for AF only - is a very different thing
    and I hated it! Maybe they have improved it, but I found it made some
    very strange focus decisions (seemingly to prefer the background over
    almost anything else!) and I quickly changed over to the Spot focus
    method, mostly using the old-fashioned-but-tried-and-true half-press method.


    Mark Thomas, Sep 9, 2008
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