Sony A100 + Tamron ??????UV FILTER?????

Discussion in 'Sony' started by infiniteMPG, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. infiniteMPG

    infiniteMPG Guest

    I have a Sony A100 and a Tamron AF 18-250/3.5-6.3 DI II Macro Lens. I
    have been having issues with clarity of my shots and lack of vivid
    colors so I was wondering if my filter could have something to do with
    it. I don't like hauling a lens like that into the wild without a
    filter to protect the lens face. I have a Kenko PRO1 D UV (W) (62mm)
    filter in the face of my lens.

    Could this filter be messing with my autoficus and colors in my

    infiniteMPG, Sep 8, 2008
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  2. Compared to what? Your A100 with another lens, or a different camera?
    RAW images or JPEGs? What colour saturation settings and mode are you
    using on the camera? What happens when you use more vivid settings?
    Chris Malcolm, Sep 8, 2008
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  3. Do a simple test. Shoot the same thing exactly with the same settings
    under identical light, with and without the filter. Unless the filter has
    finger-grease smudges on it, color and contrast should be unaffected.
    If the filter is a rare (for Kenko) not flat one, focus and/or sharpness
    can be affected. More likely, you are expecting too much from a too
    wide range (and therefore performance-compromised) zoom lens.
    --David Ruether
    David Ruether, Sep 8, 2008
  4. It's also possible the OP is comparing first DSLR with previous P&S,
    and is being misled by different default jpeg control settings. We
    don't have enough information.
    Chris Malcolm, Sep 9, 2008
  5. infiniteMPG

    infiniteMPG Guest

    Compared to what? Your A100 with another lens, or a different camera?

    Basically a different camera. Images even with PS-C3 just can't seem
    to be made vivid enough. Used to my old PAS Konica Minolta Z3 which
    gave me very vivid images and clearer pictures without messing with a
    bunch of controls. Biggest thing I "lost" was the ability to preview
    what the settings were doing thru the view finder before I pushed the
    shutter button.
    Been trying both and not happy with the JPEG settings and the RAW
    images I just can't seem to get decent even messing with Photo Shop.

    Been trying stuff across the board but my problem is in the field I
    can't see in the viewer what the alterations made. Then when I get
    back and look on the PC it's hard to remember what I was messing
    with. Been trying to start with everything in automatic mode and then
    just tweaking a few minor things. It seems that as soon as I start
    zooming anything, especially in light other then direct sunlight, I
    get fuzzy images. Unless I'm within a few feet of my subject I get no
    vivid clarity in my shots. Mostly what I want to shoot is outdoor
    nature type shots.

    Didn't know if the filter was maybe causing focusing issues but I'll
    try to see if I take identical shots with and without it and see what
    happens. I shopped for weeks for the lens I got (Tamron AF
    18-250/3.5-6.3 DI II Macro Lens) and basically got good reviews from
    bunches of people including the groups as I wanted a good multi-
    purpose lens so I didn't have to keep swapping lens out (or hauling
    them around) when hiking. So far I've been pretty disappointed with
    the A100 and the lens.
    infiniteMPG, Sep 12, 2008
  6. If that's like most P&S cameras its default JPEG processing settings
    would give brighter sharper more vivid images ex-camera than most
    DSLRs. The reason for that is that most DSLRs have a much wider
    dynamic range than P&S cameras, and you can't get that vividness and
    contrast etc. without losing some of the dynamic range and detail. You
    can possibly adjust the DSLR and certainly edit its images to get that
    same bright vivid sharpness. The reason for making it adjustments you
    have to make is that the wider dynamic range gives you more choice in
    what part of the dynamic range you choose to emphasize, and which you
    choose to lose.
    I have a Sony A350 with the Sony version of the same lens. My usual
    test of how sharp an image is is how much I can downsize it without
    losing detail. I find that when the lens is at its extremes, i.e, wide
    open and at 18mm or 250mm then it's usually only sharp enough for a
    7MP image (downsize to 50%), and sometimes only 4.7MP (downsize to
    33%). Backing off from the extreme ends of zoom and up a stop or two I
    find it's usually sharp enough for a 9.3MP (downsize to 67%) image,
    and sometimes a 14MP image. If I try hard (e.g. tripod and f8 and care
    with focussing and avoiding the extremes of zoom) I can usually get an
    image which justifies 14MP most of the time, although there's clearly
    room for extra sharpness.

    I also have a Sony R1, reputed to have a very sharp Zeiss zoom
    (14.3-105mm, x7), and I find that most of the time, away from extremes
    of zoom or opening, the A350 with the 18-250 produces images with as
    much more detail as I'd expect from 40% more pixels.

    IMHO that's very good performance indeed for a zoom range of x14!

    I've not used an A100 but I suspect it can't be too different in basic
    operation from my A350. On that I get to see the effect of changes of
    settings in the live view screen.
    You don't mention what JPEG settings you're using. I find with my A350
    that the standard default settings produced flat soft images. Turning
    up saturation and sharpness produced images with the kind of sharp
    vividness I'd liked a lot from the R1. But at the cost of losing some
    detail and introducing more sharpening artefacts than I was
    comfortable with. In the end I found the best compromise for my
    general shots was Landscape mode (slightly more vivid colours) with
    sharpness turned up one notch to +1.

    That produces ex-camera slightly flatter and softer images than I
    like, but which are very simply tweakable in an editor to brighten
    them up ans sharpen them a bit more, while losing little if any of the
    extra detail resoltion available in RAW.

    I find Sony's own RAW Image Data Converter produces the best results.
    camera? What happens when you use more vivid settings?
    But you can see the alterations in Live View, and you can scrutinise
    them in a lot more detail by reviewing the shot after you've taken
    it. You may not want to do that all the time, but since you're trying
    to learn how to use a new camera it would seem to be obvious that you
    should use the feedback it provides you with.
    It sounds to me as though your experimental method is too haphazard
    for you to be able to draw any useful conclusions. You need to use a
    notebook, or an audio recorder, or snap along with your photos some
    indications of what you're doing, such as photographing a scribbled

    It sounds as though you might have a focussing problem. To test that
    open the lens wide and photograph something centrally focussed several
    yards away on grass or another textured surface. Then check by looking
    at the grass whether the plane of sharp focus is actually on the
    object you focussed on.
    I've been pleased by how good mine is, the Sony version of your
    Tamron, supposed to be optically identical, and I'm using it with a
    camera with higher resolution than yours. I think you need to test
    more carefully and systematically in order to find out if there's
    something wrong with your lens while you can still return it.

    I'd also look around the image web sites, such as Flickr, to find
    images taken with the A100 to find images which you like. You can then
    check the EXIF data or ask them to see what camera settings and lenses
    etc. they were using.
    Chris Malcolm, Sep 12, 2008
  7. Please provide examples.
    How about comparing shots with and without?
    Do you shoot where salt water, sand, mud or similar things
    fly around?
    A question does not become more questioning, only more
    questionable, by adding multiple question marks.

    How about you try that by removing the filter for some tests?

    Wolfgang Weisselberg, Sep 14, 2008
  8. infiniteMPG

    BlackShadow Guest

    It is more likely to be your settings. All wide zooms are a compromise but
    that lens is one of the better ones for sharpness, colour etc. What WB
    setting are you using, what aperture, etc.? Have you got the "Super Steady
    Shot" turned on? Is it on mode one or two?.

    I won't use any filter on a digital camera, all filters slow the lens down,
    but I know many people do. They serve no useful purpose other than as a de
    facto lens cap.

    BlackShadow, Sep 16, 2008
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