HS50 focus woes

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
DickyAus
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HS50 focus woes
11 months ago

First a word of thanks to Lloydy for his help with my earlier post. Camera Raw looks like an excellent tool; unfortunately I only have Photoshop Elements. I will search for something similar and cheaper so I will be able to diagnose my own faults without having to pester people on this forum.

Myu focus woes:

1. Using zoom.

The fiddler craps in the next few shots are quite small, the carapace is about 30mm across. The focal point shows as the carapace in all shots.

Reasonable focus

Fair to poor

and then this happens

I get so many shots like this, I took the shot just to show what happens. I had several attempts to get focus

Then focus returns (a bit)

Again less than perfect

Is there just too much zoom and I need macro on? If I zoom out a little I get the desired focus. The focus point here is the sand midway between the two crabs:

Mine's bigger than his!

The lady just wasn't interested.

The thing I liked in the last shot was all the tiny crabs I hadn't seen with the naked eye.

And I thought I was having a bad day

2. Metering mode focus point in all pics is the sand just before the sea.

Pattern

Average

Use Spot and the camera won't focus at all. If I shift the focus point to the grass alongside the tree I get this Ignore all faults except focus.

Not a shot I would normally take

If I then shift focus point back to the sand

The camera does come back into focus a bit

Just a little history of the place

If anyone has any idea whit I am doing wrong I would welcome their advice and ease back on the blood pressure tablets. (Barossa Shiraz).

Dicky.

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jcmarfilph
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to DickyAus, 11 months ago

1. If subject is too close even if you are not shooting macro, enable macro mode.

2. Spot metering is not advisable for landscape unless you know how to use it. It is generally used for critter shot. Center or average metering is appropriate for landscape shot.

-=[ Joms ]=-

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DickyAus
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to jcmarfilph, 11 months ago

Good points. Thank you. The only problem with the zoom at short/medium range is that the LCD doesn't have the resolution to show the poor focus (even with full zoom in playback); it's not until I get them on the big screen that I see exactly what I've got. Perhaps time and experiment with distance and zoom will give me a better appreciation of when to try macro or shoot both with and without to improve my chance of a better shot. I must admit I haven't tried spot on landscapes before, I nearly always use average. What is the technique for using spot in a scene such as I tried today?

Regards, Dicky

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cantanima
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to DickyAus, 11 months ago

I notice the aperture on the landscape w/spot focus is f/2.8. The others are all higher. Could that be part of the problem? You want a larger depth of field for a landscape.

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jcmarfilph
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to DickyAus, 11 months ago

DickyAus wrote:

Good points. Thank you. The only problem with the zoom at short/medium range is that the LCD doesn't have the resolution to show the poor focus (even with full zoom in playback); it's not until I get them on the big screen that I see exactly what I've got. Perhaps time and experiment with distance and zoom will give me a better appreciation of when to try macro or shoot both with and without to improve my chance of a better shot. I must admit I haven't tried spot on landscapes before, I nearly always use average. What is the technique for using spot in a scene such as I tried today?

Regards, Dicky

Point then recompose is the right technique for using spot-metering on landscape scene especially with lots of DR like this:

-=[ Joms ]=-

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DickyAus
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to jcmarfilph, 11 months ago

That has worked well - a very good example thank you. I will give it a go and see what I can do.  It is clear the HS50 is not as 'point and shoot' friendly as my old HS20. I carry my camera everywhere and sometimes see something and need to just grab it and click away; the HS20 set to EXR always returned acceptable results - the HS50 often disappoints. When my copy of "Digital Photography Field Guide" arrives I will get a lot more serious about my retirement hobby. I think I have the only HS50 in Australia so I can't find anyone nearby to compare results with.

Dicky

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DickyAus
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to cantanima, 11 months ago

Good point - I must remember to spin the dial to select the best aperture and shutter combination.

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Jerry Mucci
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to DickyAus, 11 months ago

DickyAus wrote:

That has worked well - a very good example thank you. I will give it a go and see what I can do.  It is clear the HS50 is not as 'point and shoot' friendly as my old HS20. I carry my camera everywhere and sometimes see something and need to just grab it and click away; the HS20 set to EXR always returned acceptable results - the HS50 often disappoints. When my copy of "Digital Photography Field Guide" arrives I will get a lot more serious about my retirement hobby. I think I have the only HS50 in Australia so I can't find anyone nearby to compare results with.

Dicky

I am not aware of ANY reason why the HS50 would not be "as point ans shoot friendly" as an HS20.  Unless, perhaps, if a deeper menu setting was set wrong for his purposes.  If anything, the EXR mode would be MORE point and shoot friendly on the HS50 because of its quicker focusing and better low light focus capabilities.

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DickyAus
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to Jerry Mucci, 11 months ago

Jerry Mucci wrote:

DickyAus wrote:

That has worked well - a very good example thank you. I will give it a go and see what I can do.  It is clear the HS50 is not as 'point and shoot' friendly as my old HS20. I carry my camera everywhere and sometimes see something and need to just grab it and click away; the HS20 set to EXR always returned acceptable results - the HS50 often disappoints. When my copy of "Digital Photography Field Guide" arrives I will get a lot more serious about my retirement hobby. I think I have the only HS50 in Australia so I can't find anyone nearby to compare results with.

Dicky

I am not aware of ANY reason why the HS50 would not be "as point ans shoot friendly" as an HS20.  Unless, perhaps, if a deeper menu setting was set wrong for his purposes.  If anything, the EXR mode would be MORE point and shoot friendly on the HS50 because of its quicker focusing and better low light focus capabilities.

I agree, but from day one with my HS50 'point and shoot' has been hit and miss. My initial delight with the first shots I took turned to despair and the thought that something  may be intermittent wrong with my camera. Alas there will be zero support from Fuji-film Australia - they don't even market the HS50 here. I'm off to 'the top end' next month so I don't want to send it back to Japan for what would probably be month's of maintenance turnaround. I hope the one year warranty is good, so I'll consider my options when I get back.

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cantanima
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to DickyAus, 11 months ago

DickyAus wrote:

I agree, but from day one with my HS50 'point and shoot' has been hit and miss. My initial delight with the first shots I took turned to despair and the thought that something  may be intermittent wrong with my camera.

I don't know if it will be any consolation, but day one w/my HS25 'point and shoot' seemed hit and miss. I've had ups and downs since then, more ups lately than before. Nearly a year ago, I went on vacation to Arizona. At the time, I was still new to the HS25, and didn't really understand all the settings. I took a few out-of-focus landscape shots like yours, because I was trying to keep it in the highest aperture possible. I only realized my mistake now, after reading your shots & reading the EXIF data.

(Why didn't I just use P mode? Don't ask. I always seem to find the hardest way to learn my lessons. I still haven't even tried P mode! :-P)

Still, I don't consider these "point and shoot" cameras; they have a learning curve. These days, I keep a much higher proportion of the photos I take, and I like the ones I keep a lot more. I've learned a few things about postprocessing, but I still do very little of it. (Mostly crop, resize & a little color improvement; I like more contrast & saturation than most cameras provide.) Climbing the curve is very much worth it, but there's a curve nonetheless.

...& that's fine w/me. I didn't consciously want a P&S; I wanted something that would give me nice photos & teach me a little. This camera taught me a lot more than I expected, & given the exasperation I sometimes give my wife and kids, I probably should have gone w/something a little simpler. In hindsight, I'm glad for it.

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DickyAus
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Re: HS50 focus woes
In reply to cantanima, 11 months ago

Thanks for the encouragement, I will persevere. I don't mind problems when I can see them in the viewfinder or in replay. In this shot the camera can only focus on the background even though the focus point is in the blurred object.

Switch to macro and:

Subject and background at a similar distance and it will find focus without macro

A bigger subject is not a problem

I know the camera can deliver what I want, especially if the subject cooperates:

My, Granny! What sharp toenails you've got.

Point and shoot though gives mixed results.

Exactly what I wanted

Zoom in on the fountain and:

Out of focus

Similar shots with my HS20 a couple of years ago. Ok different time of day and mid-winter.

Of the 100+ shots I took that day none were throw away. Point my HS20 ant anything and it seemed to cope:

I naturally expected the latest and greatest in the HS series to be easier and better in all respects. It is of course quite obvious that when I or the HS50 gets it right the images are far superior to the HS20.

Dicky.

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