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Subject: "(D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them." Previous topic | Next topic
Michael Baca Registered since 06th Jan 2011Sun 03-Jul-11 08:58 PM
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"(D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."


Pueblo, US
          

I spent the day at the lake and took 365 photos, got home and most (not all) of them look good until I zoom in on the image and then they are out of focus and blurry.

Also there is a TON of noise with my new lens (AF-S DX Nikkor 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6) and it's starting to get on my nerves. ISO is at 200. I know there is something that I'm doing wrong, but I'm not sure what.

Here is an exmaple:
http://i51.photobucket.com/albums/f363/jesterdev/DSC_0296.jpg

And a close up:


Ideas, suggestions are very welcomed.




Visit my Nikonians gallery.

Attachment #1, (jpg file)

  

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Replies to this topic
Subject Author Message Date ID
Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
jpFoto
03rd Jul 2011
1
Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
Michael Baca
03rd Jul 2011
2
     Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
gkaiseril Gold Member
03rd Jul 2011
3
Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
blw Moderator
03rd Jul 2011
4
Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
Michael Baca
04th Jul 2011
5
     Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
Stonecherub Silver Member
04th Jul 2011
6
     Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
blw Moderator
04th Jul 2011
8
     Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
blw Moderator
04th Jul 2011
7
          Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
Michael Baca
08th Jul 2011
9
               Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
blw Moderator
08th Jul 2011
10
Reply message RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them.
tclune
13th Jul 2011
11

jpFoto Registered since 25th Jun 2010Sun 03-Jul-11 09:32 PM
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#1. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

Hi Michael

First, your images look good to me, but after fielding a couple of these questions and concerns, I would ask whether or not you were using a filter. Some of the cheap filters definitely degrade your images.

jP

  

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Michael Baca Registered since 06th Jan 2011Sun 03-Jul-11 09:47 PM
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#2. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 1
Mon 04-Jul-11 05:36 AM by Michael Baca

Pueblo, US
          

Thanks for the reply. I'm not using any filters, I actually left them at home. I guess what I want is tack sharp photos, and that's just not what I'm getting. A few of the shots like the one above came out tack sharp, but most where not.

Perhaps I'm just being anal, which is they way I am with my photos and art.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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gkaiseril Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Oct 2005Sun 03-Jul-11 10:44 PM
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#3. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 2


Chicago, US
          

A camera lens has one exact focus distance parallel to the film plain. Everything else near that distance is within acceptable focused distances or the mis focus is not noticed. The more you crop the more you will notice the differences between the focused distance and the near focused distances. Also you will be dealing with the enlargement of the pixel sites and magnifying their edge boundaries that are square and not round. With natural objects this will more apparent then with square or rectangular man made objects.

George
My Nikonian Galleries

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Sun 03-Jul-11 11:13 PM
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#4. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 0


Richmond, US
          

> there is a TON of noise

Noise is not a function of a lens, at least not directly. The things that create noise are high ISO and poor exposure. So the first question is what ISO were you shooting at when you got noise? From the light levels that appear to be present here, I'd guess you were in pretty good light, so likely at a low ISO.... and in fact, it's at ISO 200. So if you've got others at ISO 200 that are noisy, your issue is almost certainly underexposure - and you had to adjust them up to get them to be "normal" brightness. That produces noise.

> then they are out of focus and blurry

It's important to be clear as to which is which. This particular one looks like it is in OK focus - in particular, nothing else is in better focus. So probably the problem - for this one - is motion of some sort. The shutter speed is 1/160th, which is not usually enough to get a sharp image hand-held - without VR. I can't tell if this was taken with VR on or off - if it's off, I'd say that's your first problem. If it's on, I can't really diagnose this one. Focus seems OK, 1/160th seems quick enough to stop a goose that's swimming, and it's definitely enough to avoid camera motion if you have VR turned on.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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Michael Baca Registered since 06th Jan 2011Mon 04-Jul-11 05:51 AM
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#5. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 4


Pueblo, US
          

Yes, the ISO was set at 200, which is as low as I can get. I don't think VR was on during most of the shots today. I keep reading different things, although it's been awhile. Some say to turn VR off, others say to leave it on. Apparently I need to make up my own mind and just keep it on. And your right, I do adjust the exposure in lightroom afterwords. So at least I now know where the noise is coming from. I knew it was me.

Exposure is ALWAYS a problem, I can never to seem to get it just right. I pay attention to what my camera says is a good exposure and it seems to be too dark or to bright most of the time, at least when looking at the shot in my camera, so I readjust to what I think is correct then take the shot again. Just realized that I need to stop doing that.

I've been doing this for a long time now, but in short spurts, then I get frustrated and quit for awhile, and forget allot of what I learned. I personally think the issue is that I am an artist by trade, so I want all of my photos to have that creative look, and I want the details to be there. I think I need to stop trying to be so creative, and start to focus more on the shot that I'm taking. Later I can get creative.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Stonecherub Silver Member Nikonian since 03rd Jan 2011Mon 04-Jul-11 11:32 AM
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#6. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 5


Tucson, US
          

If you want "perfect" photographs, you need to get a different world. All lenses are compromises, especially zooms. Enlarge enough and they're all fuzzy. I suspect you hand-held that loon picture from a boat and it looks fine to me, even the feathers you think unsharp.

I have an 18 - 200 AF-S Nikkor zoom on a D5000 which I use to photograph carved gravestones and volcanoes. I use tripod for nearly everything except when I'm hiking across the lava. A fast shutter speed reduces but cannot eliminate motion blur and I accept the "snap-shots" I get. If the subject is important, out comes the tripod.

To improve sharpness, I bought a Gigapan robot to make composite panoramas of the cones. With the lens at 200 in manual focus, the machine click-click-clicks through 120 images that are stitched in the computer. The viewer can look at the entire volcano and zoom to examine individual bombs on its slopes but viewer zoom eventually ends in a blurry mess. Blame physics.

Also, a friend of mine who makes gigantic prints (larger than 16 * 20) generates "sharpness" using fractal geometry in post-processing.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Mon 04-Jul-11 12:57 PM
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#8. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 6


Richmond, US
          

> All lenses are compromises, especially zooms.

That's literally true, but...

> Enlarge enough and they're all fuzzy.

Also literally true, but... they are actually good enough for most purposes. The 18-55VR, for example, is easily sharp enough that it can make a huge print that is tack sharp, given a big enough sensor and good technique. By huge I don't mean 8x10, I mean 40x60. Inches. And there are a number of lenses sharper than the 18-55VR, including zooms.

> A fast shutter speed reduces but cannot eliminate motion blur

Again, literally true, but 1/4000th (available on every Nikon DSLR) is enough to stop an IndyCar at 245mph. I think it's fair to claim that most subjects aren't going that fast. Certainly the OP's goose was not, and neither are Half Dome or the lights of Paris.

> gigantic prints (larger than 16 * 20) generates "sharpness" using fractal geometry in post-processing.

That's not necessary for medium-sized prints such as 16x20 unless you are working from a small crop, or your sensor was very small to begin with (eg a 4mp D2h).

----

In general, I think you're setting the goals too low. For many - most? - subjects, extreme measures need not be taken to get excellent results. However, good technique is required most of the time.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Mon 04-Jul-11 12:46 PM
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#7. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 5


Richmond, US
          

> the ISO was set at 200, which is as low as I can get.

Well, that's good and bad. It's good in that it doesn't inherently create noise. It's bad *IF* you choose an ISO that's so low that it creates other problems - for example with a slow lens (this is one) you may need a higher shutter speed to get crisp results. Many people mistakenly go for the lower ISO, reasoning that they want the better IQ. But that's false economy: a slightly noisy frame that is pin sharp usually works a LOT better than a totally noise-free frame that has motion blur. The noise can be addressed in post processing - especially if it's minimal - but the motion blur is hopeless.

> I don't think VR was on during most of the shots today.

Well, that was your problem with this shot. The shutter speed was 1/160th, but the focal length was 300mm. The rule of thumb is that you need a shutter speed of 1 / (focal length + 50%) to hand-hold and get a sharp result, assuming that (a) you're about average in hand-holding technique and (b) you don't have a subject motion problem. In this case I would need roughly 1/450th which I'd round up to 1/500th. You are 1/500 -> 1/250 -> 1/125 or almost two full stops below that. And, as a beginner, your technique is very possibly less than average. If you'd have had VR turned on, it would get you about three to four stops better, converting this one from blurry to possibly quite sharp.

> I keep reading different things, although it's been awhile. Some say to turn VR off, others say to leave it on

I don't know what you're reading. This is a topic on which there is pretty much universal consensus: turn VR on unless you're using a tripod. If you're on a tripod, turn it off unless you have one of the special high-end (> $4500) lenses that have a special tripod mode VR implementation. It has no effect for shutter speeds faster than 1/500th or so, but you can just leave it on in those cases. It uses a little extra battery, but modern batteries are so long-lived that it won't make a difference unless you're going days without a recharge.

> Exposure is ALWAYS a problem

It shouldn't be. Modern meters are quite accurate, although they can be fooled in some cases and you do have to understand what they are doing. I highly recommend Bryan Peterson's Understanding Exposure. Exposure is the most basic thing in photography, and if you don't get it right, nothing else matters.

> it seems to be too dark or to bright most of the time, at least when looking at the shot in my camera

How are you judging this? By looking at the image on the LCD, or with the histogram? If the former, be aware that the LCD is not calibrated (and cannot be), while the latter is fairly objective.

> I readjust to what I think is correct then take the shot again. Just realized that I need to stop doing that.

Nothing wrong with that, really. You should get to the point that you are satisfied when you check, but check and reshoot is one of the key ways to avoid missing shots.

> I think I need to stop trying to be so creative, and start to focus more on the shot that I'm taking

I think I'd express it a different way: you need to master your tools. You wouldn't get far as an artist without having good control over paint or chisel, and it's no different in photography.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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Michael Baca Registered since 06th Jan 2011Fri 08-Jul-11 02:36 AM
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#9. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 7
Fri 08-Jul-11 02:45 AM by Michael Baca

Pueblo, US
          

>I think I'd express it a different way: you need to master
>your tools. You wouldn't get far as an artist without having
>good control over paint or chisel, and it's no different in
>photography.

I can't thank you enough for all your help so far. I have actually been taking all your advice to heart and recently been paying more attention to what I'm doing. The result has been amazing. I really just needed to slow down and as you said "master my tools". I was so busy always trying to capture the shot that I did not really pay much attention to anything else. These past few days have been very inspiring for me.

You can see some of my recent photos in my Nikonians gallery, I personally can see a huge difference.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Fri 08-Jul-11 12:36 PM
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#10. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 9


Richmond, US
          

> The result has been amazing. .... You can see some of my recent photos in my Nikonians gallery, I personally can see a huge difference.

You're right, those are much better. It is obvious that you have an artistic "eye."

> I was so busy always trying to capture the shot that I did not really pay much attention to anything else.

Indeed. I'm not sure what kind of artist you are, but the following analogy makes sense to me: it was a bit like the painter was rushing around capturing his impression on canvas, but didn't take time to notice that he had put the wrong end of the brush in the paint!

> I really just needed to slow down and as you said "master my tools".

Slowing down is just temporary. After a while you will become comfortable with the tools, and you can let your fingers do most of the work.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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tclune Registered since 15th Dec 2010Wed 13-Jul-11 06:08 PM
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#11. "RE: (D5000) Photos not sharp when zoomed in on them."
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

According to the EXIF data, you were shooting 300mm at 1/160s and f/22. This lens is not stellar at 300mm under the best of circumstances, but when you push it to f/22 you will add diffraction blurring, and when you shoot at 1/160s you are counting on the VR to stabilize the shot. I would set the f-stop to somewhere between f/8 and f/11 with that lens, and get the speed up as much as that would allow. That should improve the crispness. FWIW

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Forums Lobby GET TO KNOW YOUR CAMERA & MASTER IT Nikon D5300/D5200/D5100/D5000/D3300/D3200/D3100/D3000 (Public) topic #3962 Previous topic | Next topic


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