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09-05-2010, 05:10 PM   #16
Pak
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Thanks all for the ideas, I will definitely try some of the suggestions in the next days.

Focal length of the first picture was 48mm and I was focusing on the center of the picture.

I just did some quick test and I bumped the sharpening from 0 to +2 it seems to make a difference, I will have to try it outside though.

@interested observer
I'm not sure I understand the whole crop thing. All I did was to crop the image in photoshop and save it, I thought that was a 100% crop. Also it seems that imgur.com doesn't keep the exif data.
The mountain is called Cataract Peak and the picture is taken from the Pipestone Valley in the canadian rockies.

09-05-2010, 05:42 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
That seems to suggest what you have done here. The nearest branch in the lower left hand corner and the fir tree in the lower right hand corner were probably pretty close. Walking back into the frame things (for their relative size) are pretty well defined, and then beyond that, they still look good - again given their respective distance and the amount of detail you can actually use.
Looking at the original image, I agree. To put it succinctly: the focus is somewhere in the foreground. No surprise the background isn't that sharp.

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 09-05-2010 at 09:56 PM.
09-05-2010, 06:23 PM   #18
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Sounds like using Auto Focus with 11 points (the default) for me. Then the K-x can't lock focus on anything because everything is white.

I would recommended setting your Auto Focus to Center, then learning how to confirm focus from the viewfinder. Don't use LiveView, Auto Focus is simply too slow and fails many times in that mode.

Second, as mentioned, it helps taking pics between f/8 and f/11 with the 18-55mm. In daylight, shake reduction and ISO 400-800 you can take it without any risk of motion blur. Abuse the fact K-x high ISO noise is low, and use smaller apertures to get sharper images.

Like they also said, try without the polarizer filter. If it's cheap, it makes image go soft because of it's internal refraction, specially with all that snow reflecting light.

PS: Take my comment with a grain of salt, as I'm a photography newbie!
09-05-2010, 07:15 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by hcarvalhoalves Quote
Sounds like using Auto Focus with 11 points (the default) for me. Then the K-x can't lock focus on anything because everything is white.

I would recommended setting your Auto Focus to Center, then learning how to confirm focus from the viewfinder. Don't use LiveView, Auto Focus is simply too slow and fails many times in that mode.

Second, as mentioned, it helps taking pics between f/8 and f/11 with the 18-55mm. In daylight, shake reduction and ISO 400-800 you can take it without any risk of motion blur. Abuse the fact K-x high ISO noise is low, and use smaller apertures to get sharper images.

Like they also said, try without the polarizer filter. If it's cheap, it makes image go soft because of it's internal refraction, specially with all that snow reflecting light.

PS: Take my comment with a grain of salt, as I'm a photography newbie!
Few nitpicks here for learning's sake:

if it's on auto 11 point and can't find focus, then using center wouldn't be able to find focus either, it also wouldn't lead to soft pictures because unless you are using AF-C, you can't take a picture unless AF is complete

auto 11 point is the most dependable for finding something to focus on, but it's not always what you want to focus on, that's when you start using different focus modes, I too recommend center point focus

Aperture, shutter speed and ISO are a system working together, if you stop down to F/11, then you'll have to raise the ISO and lower the shutter speed, both will soften the image, it could even cancel out the effects of stopping down depending on the light, a tripod eliminates all compromise

09-05-2010, 07:30 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pak Quote
Thanks all for the ideas, I will definitely try some of the suggestions in the next days.

Focal length of the first picture was 48mm and I was focusing on the center of the picture.

I just did some quick test and I bumped the sharpening from 0 to +2 it seems to make a difference, I will have to try it outside though.

@interested observer
I'm not sure I understand the whole crop thing. All I did was to crop the image in photoshop and save it, I thought that was a 100% crop. Also it seems that imgur.com doesn't keep the exif data.
The mountain is called Cataract Peak and the picture is taken from the Pipestone Valley in the canadian rockies.
I took me about 2 minutes with Google Earth, but I am figuring out that Cataract Peak was about 8 to 10 miles away (using the ruler in the tools menu), which would make each pixel in your crop be about 6'x4' (on the peak). At 48mm, the depth of field is 35' to infinity, with an view angle of 27 degrees. So the small trees in the foreground are farther away that what they appear. At 35' you had great resolution on them, along with the ground cover. I believe that you were almost directly south in the meadow area with a ridge line off to your right. That pretty much fits with your angle of view.

With the polarizer, and everything, I would say that its a wonderful image, the filter pulled out and defined the sky real well (it might have reduced the overall resolution a bit). I think that its as sharp as you can expect. I do not know that any camera for this image will do much better. And for a kit lens - I think that you were able to pull every last bit of resolution out of this.

To get sharper, you might try an FA 43 Limited, along with a DA* 40. However, each of those lenses will put a hefty dent in your check book (compared to the kit lens). Since your at 48mm anyway, any of the K50, or M50 or A50 prime lenses at f2, for about $20 to $50 will give you a marginally better image. But, I am thinking that you probably captured 90% of what is attainable. Everything else will be adding a few % points.

In terms of the crop your posted image is 569 x 475 pixels. The crop that I took from the original is 469 x 356 at 100%. In order to match your crop, I needed to zoom in another 25% or so. I do not know what went on.....

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Last edited by interested_observer; 09-05-2010 at 07:36 PM.
09-05-2010, 07:49 PM   #21
Pak
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Thats some fine e-detective work right there! I just checked google earth and it's closer to 5 miles; the picture was taken from Fish Lake just west of the peak. But yeah, your point still stand.

Also, I came to the realization that most of the picture that look amazingly sharp are usually reduced in size.

@hcarvalhoalves
I used center point for this one
09-07-2010, 03:58 PM   #22
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I'm not sure if this is relevant, but there is a soft setting on the Kx, I believe it is for portraits...
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