Am I doing something wrong? Sony A57

Started Jan 31, 2013 | Discussions thread
Jeadm Senior Member • Posts: 1,673
Re: Am I doing something wrong? Sony A57

JajoB wrote:

...Shutter speed: 1/40 sec

F stop: f/3.5

ISO: 6400 (I'm guessing this is where things went wrong)

Focal length: 18mm

Here's another picture, with the same effects, probably even more exaggerated.

Shutter speed: 1/60 sec

F stop: f/3.5

ISO: 3200

Focal length: 18mm

Step back and zoom in a little if you can. 18mm isn't the sharpest point of a kit zoom. Spot focus on the eyes, them recompose if necessary. You gotta practice this and be quick, because they're quicker.

Light matters a great deal, without it and/or a fast expensive lens you're going to have problems. Get some good light on that kid, that's really the bottom line. Indoor lamps don't really cut it. Without it your camera will just be pushing that ISO up and it'll kill all the detail. I'm assuming you're only shooting jpegs. On camera flash will be harsh, toss some tissue (kleenex, toilet paper) over the flash and see if you can get the diffused light you need without blowing out the subject like a direct flash normally does.

That said, I don't know why the camera would select 6400 in Auto ISO, something's not right there. ISO 800 or less as much as possible (closer to 100 the better). Get off auto ISO and see if you can get control of that first. Not only do you need a shutter speed you can handhold but you also need one fast enough to stop his moving (kids always move just when you hit the button, and it only gets worse as they get older). A faster prime like 35mm f1.8 really helps with this kind of thing.  External flashes too.

I'm assuming you're using the kit zoom. I don't think this is your main problem, but each lens has a sharpness sweet spot at certain apertures depending on where you are in the zoom range. 18mm @ f5.6, 35mm @ f6.3, 55mm @f8-11.

You can try adjusting your in camera creative style settings (contrast, sharpness, saturation).

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