Canon 400d/xti rebel question..

Discussion in 'Canon' started by the_niner_nation, Apr 21, 2007.

  1. Hi..I got a canon 400d slr as a birthday gift and it's my first DSLR camera,
    Ive always used a sony cybershot compact digital until then.

    Im a little dismayed at the picture quality that the 400d is taking so far
    ( using the kit lens 18-55mm), all my pictures seem to be really soft
    looking and not razor sharp like the sony cybershot.

    now as a newbie, i am certain that im either not using the camera properly,
    or have the correct settings, but im finding that even using the full auto
    mode the pictures still dont seem as crisp and sharp as they do with the
    cybershot.. I have even used a tripod and the results are still a little
    dissapointing, I was expecting the images to be crystal clear and very sharp

    any thoughts and advice would be very welcome!!

    thanks :)
     
    the_niner_nation, Apr 21, 2007
    #1
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  2. the_niner_nation

    Rudy Lacchin Guest

    Menu 2 > Picture Style > Standard > Sharpness. See if that helps?

    R.
     
    Rudy Lacchin, Apr 21, 2007
    #2
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  3. the_niner_nation

    Joel Guest

    P&S and DSLR are 2 different beats so you have to treat them different
    than each other. P&S usually give pretty good displaying image as it has
    most or just about all setting calculated for you automatically (you may
    have option to change ISO, Flash etc.), when DLSR depends on many different
    things.

    I don't own 400D but I believe it's a very fine DSLR, and just like most
    if not all DSLRs it may require a higher level of requirements.

    - Lens is one of the most important parts of DSLR photography

    - Sharp lens if you want to capture detailed image

    - Fast lens if you photograph sport, and low-light

    - The lens-kit 18-55mm isn't in the top_of_line, may not even in middle
    range, but it should be able to capture pretty sharp image depending on the
    camera setting, and good lighting etc.. IOW, you can get much sharper image
    with the 18-55mm lens-kit if you know how, but I don't recomment this lens
    (cuz it requires extra work, and probably end up with more miss than hit).

    - POST PROCESSING (yup! I type in CAPITAL) is a very very very important
    part of photography, especially DSLR that you can't get around without good
    post processing skill.

    And if you are very fast leanrer, it may still take 1-2 years heavy
    practicing to be usable, and probably 5-20 years of experiences to master
    few tricks .. or to be in higher level. And with the combination of DSLR
    and Post Processing skill you will never want to work on most image captured
    by P&S camara (if you work on very small detail).
     
    Joel, Apr 21, 2007
    #3
  4. Hi,
    I got a 350D 9 months ago, had exactly the same experience. Quite simply,
    it's the lens. The 18 - 55mm the ships with the camera is not very good. I
    bought a sigma lens, didn't change anything else, and the difference was
    stunning.
    Mike
     
    michael Cunningham, Apr 21, 2007
    #4
  5. the_niner_nation

    Pat Guest

    Most point and shoots have a fairly high f-number compared to what you
    can get with a dSLR. So my first thought is that you might be using
    too low of an f-stop. Set the samer in the f-5.6 or higher range if
    you can.

    Second off, a dSLR can give you a slower shutter speed and induce some
    shake if you are not watching the settings. Go to at least 1/60 (or
    higher) to eliminate that. Over 1/100th is better.

    It takes a while to make the switch and to learn what's going on.
    Start by reading the manual. Then do some browsing on the web or get
    a good book to read.

    In the mean time, set your ISO to 400. When you learn enough to think
    about changing it, then change it. Until then, it's fine and leave it
    alone.

    Then, take your camera off those stupid pre-defined modes and spin the
    dial over to Tv. Set the speed to 100. If you still have blur, go up
    a little.

    You could also set it to Av at f-5.6 or f-8 (and some people will
    argue for that) but for a starter, I'd set Tv to 100 and start
    there.

    Go shoot some pictures and check then over. Then when you get to
    reading your "new" book in a few days you'll have a better
    understanding of what it's talking about.

    Have fun, good luck, keep shooting.
     
    Pat, Apr 21, 2007
    #5
  6. the_niner_nation

    bworthey Guest

    - Fast lens if you photograph sport, and low-light

    Joel, since you mentioned this in this post, I have a question. What
    constitutues a "fast" lens? Thats something that I have seen mentioned, but
    is not something I fully understand when it comes to all of this with
    photography. I'm relatively a newbie. I feel like I have a decent
    understanding of apeture, shutter, ISO, that sort of thing, and I can set my
    camera up to what I need it to do in the conditions I'm in, etc, but some
    things I don't understand. Can you help me with that one?

    B-Worthey
     
    bworthey, Apr 21, 2007
    #6
  7. the_niner_nation

    Pat Guest

    A "fast lens" in one with a large aperature, esp. one with a large
    aperature for it's size.

    A 300mm f-2 lens is "fast". A 50mm f-2 is also fast, but a f-1.2 is
    faster. A 50mm f5.6 wouldn't be considered fast while a 1000 mm f5.6
    would probabaly be considered fast.

    You use fast lenses for low light and high-speed action. They also
    produce a relatively small depth of field.
     
    Pat, Apr 21, 2007
    #7
  8. the_niner_nation

    Joel Guest

    Fast lens is the lens with large aperature like F-1.2, F-1.4, F-1.8, F-2
    (these are usually Prime or none-zoom) and F-2.8 is the most popular (most
    if not all fast zoom lens are f2.8)

    - They are more expensive and many people call "Fast lens", "Good Glass"
    etc. because they are made from best quality glass, and capable of capturing
    sharp clean image at wider aperature.

    - And they can focus faster than cheap glass f3.5, F4.0 etc.. But do not
    mistaken with some top_notch F4 lens, they may not do f2.8 but they made
    specific for long zoom and great quality. IOW, they are good glass except
    not design for wider aperature.

    - Yes, with some camera you can boost up the ISO to 400-800-1600 to do
    low-light, but you probably end up with lot of noise, blur etc.. and the
    F2.8 can do ISO 400-800-1600 too, and it should have a better quality.

    So FAST LENS, or lens can do F1.2, F2.8 etc..

    - for sport you can get sharp image because it focus faster, don't hunt
    alot.

    - It's made with good glass so you will have better IQ, and it's capable of
    getting good quality at F2.8 or F1.2, so if you photograph at f3.5 or f5.6
    (or smaller) then it will give even shaprer quality.

    - Slow lens means it only capable of capturing acceptable image at F3.5, and
    you may have to shoot f5.6 or f8 to get sharper image.
     
    Joel, Apr 21, 2007
    #8
  9. ">
    Thanks, pat...I'm going to take on board your advice, but I am curuous that
    on full-auto mode I don't get a crisp shot even in decent lighting
    conditions, etc..
     
    the_niner_nation, Apr 22, 2007
    #9
  10. the_niner_nation

    Joel Guest

    F-STOP is what you need to control for Sharp/Soft as well as DOF etc.
    Since Canon has many full-auto-modes not many people could be able to guess
    which auto-mode you have in mind.

    - There are semi-auto modes which auto-adjust *most* or *some* of the
    setting

    - There are full auto-modes the camera does all the auto-setting

    - And most of the modes you can control the F-Stop or Shuttle by adjusting
    the ISO. Some mode you control (camera auto-setting) either F-Stop or
    Shuttle by adjusting either F-Stop or Shuttle speed.

    Or just like operating an automobile, you have the Gas paddle to increase
    the speed, while you have Brake to slow down the speed, and steering wheel
    to turn to wherever you want. And you are the driver who have full control
    of what you want to autmobile to do (except accident of course <bg>)

    And my technique is to make thing simplest to understand than finding an
    easier way to make thing more difficult <bg>
     
    Joel, Apr 22, 2007
    #10
  11. the_niner_nation

    Rod Guest


    The above post is good advice. I don't think any
    DSLR's are designed to give razor sharp images
    like the point and shoot cameras. I think that
    most people that own them want the flexibility to
    sharpen the amount they want. You don't have that
    option with point and shoot because they are
    oversharpened in the camera. I also know that
    lenses have sweet spots where a higher
    number/smaller aperture will give the sharpest
    image. I have a 350D with a 28-105 3.5-4.5 USMII
    lens. This is better than the kit lens but buy no
    means a great lens. f6.3 seems to be it's sweet
    spot. Pictures at f3.5 to 4.5 are terrible. f5.6
    looks OK but 6.3 is great. That was a little
    disappointing to me. I have a lens that will go to
    3.5 and I can't use it. Once I understood over
    sharpened, over saturated pictures are not
    realistic it became clear the advantages of
    dslr's. I post process everything and can make
    good pictures into great pictures. The way I see
    it, if someone wants good pictures right out of
    the camera and doesn't want to spend the time post
    processing, they should stick with a point and shoot.
     
    Rod, Apr 23, 2007
    #11
  12. the_niner_nation

    Joel Guest

    DSLR & good glass should give you super sharp that P&S wouldn't match. But
    that will cost you extra money and some experience

    As I have mentioned that some cheap f3.5 lens means that it can capture an
    ok image at f3.5, and if you quality then you may have to go for f5.6 or
    even f8+

    That's what I have mentioned about saving $$$$ for fast lens (f2.8 or
    better)
    Portrait is my main cup of tea, and I rarely use sharpen, and never
    sharpen the whole image. I usually apply soften on female, and
    may be little sharpen on the eyes (or may be lips etc.)
    Well, you may have to pay me to use P&S and pay lot of $$$$ for me to post
    processing P&S (small detail not just to play around). I have gone through
    almost 8-9 P&S before settle for DSLR, I still have 2 P&S which I haven't
    touched for many years.
     
    Joel, Apr 23, 2007
    #12
  13. the_niner_nation

    Pat Guest

    They say that a camel is a horse that was designed by a committee.
    Full auto mode is the same thing. It gets most people by for most
    things but doesn't do a great job for anyone.

    As I remember it, the camera "picks" a recommended f-stop/shutter
    speed combination and you can then use the wheel nob to change the
    settings: one way increases f-stop and decreases shutter speed and the
    other direction moves the settings in the other direction. the
    setting that is dialed in probably has too low of a shutter speed.
     
    Pat, Apr 23, 2007
    #13
  14. the_niner_nation

    rich Guest

    Your Sony probably had built-into-the-camera "image stabilization" which
    covers up a lot of movement and setting errors. DSLR's generally do NOT
    have it in the camera. You have to buy image stabilized lenses ( for big
    $$$) to duplicate that feature.

    Sony is introducing this month or in May, (depending on where you live).the
    DSC H9. When it is available locally, go take a look. You may find a 31 to
    450mm Ultra zoom; image stabilization on camera at all time; speeds to
    1/4000 ths ...is all that you want and need.

    DSLR's are a different beast than what you have been using and will cost you
    more to buy the really good, stabilized glass that it takes to get perfect
    shots. RG (Sony H5 owner)
     
    rich, Apr 24, 2007
    #14
  15. too bad i won't be able to use that on my canon 400d :-(
     
    the_niner_nation, Apr 24, 2007
    #15
  16. the_niner_nation

    RichG Guest

    If, after reviewing all of your options..you might find that the Sony DSC H9
    ( or ANY its many competitors) better serves your needs.

    You could just sell the DSLR and buy an Ultra Zoom. A DSLR is NOT for
    everybody. ,....Nor is an Ultra zoom for everyone..

    I can buy a DSLR if I want to.... I even have Minolta AF lens that will fit
    the Sony A100 DSLR without any further investment. I don't want to carry
    around three or more lenses. I don't want to give up "constant preview". I
    don't want to change lenses every time I want a long shot versus a close-in
    one.

    I look at it as making the choice of a camera based on one's specific needs.
    You received the DSLR as a gift, because someone..... other than you,
    thought it would be a neat gift. Only you know what you want and need and
    use the camera for..

    regards, Rich
     
    RichG, Apr 24, 2007
    #16
  17. it was a gift based on my pending vacations to kenya for a safari expidition
    and then a trip to India, so my primary use was a camera to photograph
    african wildlife

    The more I am getting familiar with my DSLR the less inclined to feel to use
    my compact digital camera ( a sony w12).

    Lugging lenses etc around is well worth the effort for the sheer quality of
    some of the pictures i am learning to shoot.

    I can see that DSL phootgraphy is becoming a labour of love, and the more im
    putting in, the more i am getting out of it.
     
    the_niner_nation, Apr 24, 2007
    #17
  18. the_niner_nation

    Joel Guest

    I did write a similar (kinda long message) but since I don't think the
    original has the same view so I decided not to post the message.
     
    Joel, Apr 25, 2007
    #18
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