Sooc shots of Osprey. Not sharp, Lots of noise

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
Digital Shutterbug Veteran Member • Posts: 5,487
Re: Sooc shots of Osprey. Not sharp, Lots of noise

Elliern wrote:

Ok, folks, I am looking for help again before I have to return this camera. I posted some replies in another thread earlier today about problems I have at long end of zoom. Tomorrow is the last day of my free trial. I really want to like this camera, but I seem to have some issues with sharpness at the long end.

Just so you know:
1. Yes I often use my car window to stabilize the camera

I rarely have success doing this. The window is very thin. You will rock around on the edge. Roll the window down and use the frame for stability.

2. Yes the motor is ALWAYS turned off as is the radio.

Very important.

3. The Ospreys are only 200-300 ft from my home, so the engine has not been running long and shouldn’t be overly hot.

Are you shooting across the hood? It's a large heat radiating surface. Avoid shooting across the hood at anytime. Certainly at 1:30 in the afternoon.

4. Sometimes I stand up and rest my elbows on the car door to help stabilize the camera.

I don't think that is good technique. The distance from your elbows to the camera is a long distance with lots of shaking possible, even held against your face. Try to brace your arms much closer to your wrists.

5. I hold the view finder tight against my eye to help minimize shake, I never use the screen view.

Very good.

I am posting two shots SOOC no changes whatsoever. One was taken earlier in the morning and the other at 1:30pm. But I could hear a lot of ruckus from the birds and went to see what was going on. One had a fish and was eating it in his favorite tree and the other was circling overhead screeching. The lighting at that time of day is pretty bright but decided to give it a go anyway on the chance one of the shots might be acceptable. Sadly none were.
I only shoot jpeg. I make any minor adjustments after downloading to my phone/iPad. I shoot in Aperture or Shutter priority modes most of the time.
High ISO NR is off, continuous shooting is low, focus area is expand flexible spot, but have also used lock on AF:flexible spot medium. AF with shutter is on. Disp. cont. AF area is on. Phase detect area-on.

Phase detect area-on has no bearing on image quality at all. It simply turns on a rectangle on the display to show you the outer borders of the focus detection points.

ISO is usually 100 but sometimes up to 400. ISO AUTO min. SS was 1/1000. Metering Mode-spot-large. Spot metering point was center. (It was suggested I use focus point link instead). AEL with shutter-on. White balance- auto. Priority set in AWB-standard. DRO/auto HDR-off.
Creative style: vivid, contrast +1, Saturation +/-0, sharpness +2.

That much sharpening in-camera is not helping the noise level. I would prefer to keep it low and discretely sharpen in PP.

That’s all. So here are two images. All suggestions are welcome. All SOOC

I thank any and all who take the time to read this long post and offer any suggestions.

Shooting at any aperture smaller than f/5.6 with a 1 inch sensor is not recommended. Past f/5.6 you are getting into diffraction. You can sometimes get away with f/8, but I try to avoid it when possible. Shooting mid-day is certainly possible to keep the aperture open to f/5.6 or more.

You're a long distance from the birds. Maybe you can't do any better, but you can't expect great results at that point. The birds simply don't cover enough pixels on the sensor. You are enlarging too much and the image quality goes to pot. In addition any noise just jumps out at you. Do your best to get as close as possible. Easier said than done.

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