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03-19-2016, 01:57 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Suarez Quote
Er, not sure, about 10-12 feet I think? Maybe less?

No, I dont like cropping my images, where I can help it, for that reason. f5.6 does seem to be round about the sweetspot for that lens.

---------- Post added 03-19-16 at 01:34 PM ----------



I also saw 'fine-tuning' Option through the menus, I dont know enough about this. If i increase this to the maximum (+10) will this incresase the sharpness of the photo's. Any disadvantages to tuning it so high?
No, adjusting af fine tuning moves the point of focus forward or backward to fine tune the lens and camera together. It must be done carefully under tightly controlled conditions or you can make things worse.
A good tool but not to be used casually.

03-19-2016, 02:22 PM   #17
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No, fine tuning is not necessarily the answer. There are plenty of photographers who never touch that feature. The truth is that if you're new to photography and the k5 is your first DSLR then you are in for a steep learning curve. Tac sharp photos require good lighting and a tripod. You can get still get reasonably sharp photos hand held with good technique and practice, though. I'm not the greatest photographer myself. I've been practicing on and off for only eight years and I'm just an amateur, so I'm not the best for dispensing advice. There are plenty of wise and experienced photographers on this site to learn from, as well as a lot of good books. So, keep learning, keep practicing. Don't forget to ignore the art of composition. You are going to take more bad photos than good ones. Be kind to yourself and have fun.

Last edited by sundr; 03-19-2016 at 02:41 PM.
03-19-2016, 02:22 PM   #18
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Both of those photos show me sharper areas in other areas than the intended subject. For example, in the first photo the man's hand seems detailed, sharp, moreso than his face. In the next photo, the rock in the right side seems more sharp.

Here are the possible causes for this:
a) Smudged, dirty lens. Check for finger prints, especially the back lens element. If you find anything, be careful how you wipe, as wiping it wrong can damage the lens! There are tutorials online about this
b) Focusing issue. Maybe the wrong focus point was chosen or something like that, but it is also possible the focus just needs to be adjusted/calibrated. There are some threads ant tutorials about this, as well.
c) Decentering. It is possible the lens is somehow damaged. Decenetering is an issue where the AF and everything works, but the image is consistently blurred on one side or in one corner because some lens element is off the optical center. You can test this is different ways. Basically look at whether the lens is always soft on one side but not the other.

The DA 50mm f1.8 should be fairly sharp at f5.6. But also keep in mind that the "tack sharp" photos you see online are taken in raw and then digitally developed (post processing), where a lot of sharpness is added. Digital sharpness has to be added these days, because our expectations are so high. If you shoot jpeg, you can go into the Info menu and choose jpeg mode (Bright, Natural, Portrait, etc.), and press Info again to edit it. There you can add a little more sharpening if you want.

QuoteOriginally posted by sundr Quote
No, fine tuning is not necessarily the answer. There are plenty of photographers who never touch that feature. The truth is that if you're new to photography and the k5 is your first DSLR then you are in for a steep learning curve. Tac sharp photos require good lighting and a tripod. You can get still get reasonably sharp photos hand held with good technique and practice, though
This is golden advice, as well. If you look at my photos, it took me a long time to figure out my gear, the camera and the lens and how they work together and which settings to use, until I would finally get sharp photos. And I still sometimes get soft, misfocused, shak-blurred photos. And it seems inexplicable to me, but that is only because I have not yet learned everything. Even things like my stance, the way I hand-hold the camera, the way I press the shutter button affect image quality (and Tripod with timer is the surest way to avoid these factors)

Last edited by Na Horuk; 03-19-2016 at 02:28 PM.
03-19-2016, 02:28 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Both of those photos show me sharper areas in other areas than the intended subject. For example, in the first photo the man's hand seems detailed, sharp, moreso than his face. In the next photo, the rock in the right side seems more sharp.

Here are the possible causes for this:
a) Smudged, dirty lens. Check for finger prints, especially the back lens element. If you find anything, be careful how you wipe, as wiping it wrong can damage the lens! There are tutorials online about this
b) Focusing issue. Maybe the wrong focus point was chosen or something like that, but it is also possible the focus just needs to be adjusted/calibrated. There are some threads ant tutorials about this, as well.
c) Decentering. It is possible the lens is somehow damaged. Decenetering is an issue where the AF and everything works, but the image is consistently blurred on one side or in one corner because some lens element is off the optical center. You can test this is different ways. Basically look at whether the lens is always soft on one side but not the other.

The DA 50mm f1.8 should be fairly sharp at f5.6. But also keep in mind that the "tack sharp" photos you see online are taken in raw and then digitally developed (post processing), where a lot of sharpness is added. Digital sharpness has to be added these days, because our expectations are so high. If you shoot jpeg, you can go into the Info menu and choose jpeg mode (Bright, Natural, Portrait, etc.), and press Info again to edit it. There you can add a little more sharpening if you want.


This is golden advice, as well. If you look at my photos, it took me a long time to figure out my gear, the camera and the lens and how they work together and which settings to use, until I would finally get sharp photos. And I still sometimes get soft, misfocused, shak-blurred photos. And it seems inexplicable to me, but that is only because I have not yet learned everything.
Thank you as i dont really know what im doing I may just take the kit to my local photo store and have it all cleaned etc. I think as you say alot of post processing is done to get exceptionally high sharpness and I think thats where I kind of need to manage my expectations

03-19-2016, 02:33 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Suarez Quote
I think as you say alot of post processing is done to get exceptionally high sharpness and I think thats where I kind of need to manage my expectations
You can just dismount the lens and look at the back element, see if there is anything on it. A cleaning tends to cost around $50 for each item, regardless of how necessary it is. But if you do take it for a cleaning, ask them to calibrate the gear, as well. You see, sometimes a lens and camera are at opposite factory tolerances and they end up being a bad combination. This is when you will need calibration. Calibration can be a slow process. Lots of pros just take all their gear to a shop to get it all calibrated, so it works well together.
This variation is dependent on the specific camera and lens - not on camera model and lens type, but the actual copies you have in your hands.
Regarding the PP thing, you can do the Info menu thing that I mentioned, or if you shoot raw, you can just play with the sharpening settings in the software that you use.
03-19-2016, 02:39 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
You can just dismount the lens and look at the back element, see if there is anything on it. A cleaning tends to cost around $50 for each item, regardless of how necessary it is. But if you do take it for a cleaning, ask them to calibrate the gear, as well. You see, sometimes a lens and camera are at opposite factory tolerances and they end up being a bad combination. This is when you will need calibration. Calibration can be a slow process. Lots of pros just take all their gear to a shop to get it all calibrated, so it works well together.
This variation is dependent on the specific camera and lens - not on camera model and lens type, but the actual copies you have in your hands.
Regarding the PP thing, you can do the Info menu thing that I mentioned, or if you shoot raw, you can just play with the sharpening settings in the software that you use.
Ok, yeah il check the back element on the lens if cleaning is that much!

Yeah, I shoot in Raw, il play with the sharpening a bit more in Lightroom
03-19-2016, 03:09 PM - 1 Like   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Suarez Quote
Yeah, I shoot in Raw, il play with the sharpening a bit more in Lightroom
So here is the thing with sharpening in LR. You can hold the left Alt button on keyboard while you adjust the various sharpening sliders. For portrait, I would start with 1.4 px, 45 sharpening, and 40 detail, and 30-40 masking. Since the subject in the photo is a man, I would also add 15-35 clarity. You can add this by brush to apply it only to one area instead of the whole photo
If you apply the lens profile, only do so for CA (set distortion to 0, as distortion correction, imo, can decrease image quality a bit. Only use distortion correction when distortion is making your photo look weird and it has to be corrected).

Edit: and just one more thing. Aside from the little focusing issues, you did well. The photos are not bad, but focusing is critical and difficult, as it is one of the things that cannot be easily corrected in PS
03-19-2016, 03:29 PM - 2 Likes   #23
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If I may make a couple of observations, hoping I don't repeat too much of the above.

Your technique seems sound.
At 10-12 feet your depth of field with that lens at that aperture should be sufficient. There is DoF calculator Online Depth of Field Calculator that can assist understanding.
In focusing on the face and recomposing you are moving, ever so slightly, your subject is also likely to move as well. DoF should in theory allow for this slight movement.
While you are intending to focus on the eyes the camera has no way of knowing this and is more likely try to focus on the face as a whole, or even somewhere else entirely, especially if you are using the zone focusing matrix. Try centre or selective point if you are not already doing this. Even using the centre point there is no guarantee the camera will focus on the the eye rather than the nose.
At that distance the eyes are a very small proportion of the subject and would be represented by very few pixels, fine details may not even be captured. Examining the image at 1:1 would tend exaggerate this blur. I have recently activated the facial recognition facility in Lightroom and have been shocked by the very blurry looking thumbnails it produces from full length portraits. Viewed full size, the photos seem to be in focus but once the face is isolated, things appear to go down hill quickly.
Use Hi-Speed multi exposure to capture several photos and select the best one. Often I find the second or third is sharper than the first.

Good luck

03-19-2016, 03:40 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bruce Clark Quote
If I may make a couple of observations, hoping I don't repeat too much of the above.

Your technique seems sound.

In focusing on the face and recomposing you are moving, ever so slightly, your subject is also likely to move as well. DoF should in theory allow for this slight movement.
I dont know if this makes any difference but I am actually focusing on the subjects eye, and not just the face as a whole.
03-19-2016, 04:16 PM   #25
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Are you sure you're keeping the shutter release button half pressed the whole time you're recomposing?

This could happen if you aim at your target, press the shutter release button to let the camera focus, then let go of the shutter release button, then recompose and press the shutter release button fully to take the photo. In doing this, your camera is going to refocus since you've let go of the button - every time that button goes to half pressed status (including going through a full press of the button) its going to trigger the camera to refocus.

Try aiming directly at your subject (the part you want in focus the most) and just take a snapshot and see if that part is in focus. No recomposing. That should show if it's the camera/lens setup needing adjustment or if it is some situation with the technique.
03-19-2016, 08:11 PM   #26
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I feel you, the focus is off. Please reset the settings and make sure there arn't any focus adjustments in the menu that are turned on. YOu may need to manually check to make sure they are turned off.

Also, try another lens. F 5.6 should be PLENTY. Also, ISO 800 wouldn't make the image look this way.
03-20-2016, 02:55 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Suarez Quote
I used single focus (i think its called, sorry only just started photography) focused on his eyes and then re-compossed the photo with the shutter half pressed.
You need to choose a single focus point that covers one of your subject's eyes in the final composition (as you shoot). You can then crop the file to adjust the composition some more if necessary.

If you choose the centre point, focus on the subject's eye, then recompose so the subject's eyes are well away from the centre of the frame, you will defocus quite a bit at wide apertures. The point of focus will now be in front of the subject's eyes.
03-20-2016, 05:29 AM   #28
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For portraits I typically use a tripod to eliminate camera shake. This also helps reduce the need for higher ISO. With my K3 anything over ISO 800 I have to apply some noise reduction. Too much camera shake can ruin a good portrait even with SR. The DA 50 1.8 is shaping lens. You could have some front/back focus issues. The photos you posted are in some challenging lighting conditions. I would try some more shots in better lighting conditions.
03-20-2016, 05:30 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
Are you sure you're keeping the shutter release button half pressed the whole time you're recomposing?

This could happen if you aim at your target, press the shutter release button to let the camera focus, then let go of the shutter release button, then recompose and press the shutter release button fully to take the photo. In doing this, your camera is going to refocus since you've let go of the button - every time that button goes to half pressed status (including going through a full press of the button) its going to trigger the camera to refocus.

Try aiming directly at your subject (the part you want in focus the most) and just take a snapshot and see if that part is in focus. No recomposing. That should show if it's the camera/lens setup needing adjustment or if it is some situation with the technique.
Definitelyhave the shutter release pressed half way, I have the focus beep turned on and will check to make sure the green octagon is highlighted at all times
03-20-2016, 07:04 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blacknight659 Quote
I feel you, the focus is off. Please reset the settings and make sure there arn't any focus adjustments in the menu that are turned on. YOu may need to manually check to make sure they are turned off.

Also, try another lens. F 5.6 should be PLENTY. Also, ISO 800 wouldn't make the image look this way.
iso will have an issue on the grain if underexposed, which it does look like an issue here. It doesn't change the focus. Quite possibly exposure compensation was changed, so that should be checked. Sometimes I notice it is changed even when I don't use it. I must accidentally hit when searching for other buttons. It looks like the metering mode used was manual, so it is possible this is just underexposed on top of the focus issue.

Spot metering was also used, which I am curious where the reading was taken? It may be best to use a center weighted metering to the get a better exposure. That would help the grain issue.
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