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07-07-2017, 05:00 PM   #1
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Strange motion blur happening from the camera K3II-any ideas what caused this?

in the moments before the fireworks show tuesday night, I brought out my K3II, mounted it on my tripod(locked all movement down) on a sturdy flat rooftop. I plugged in a cable release and turned off the 2-sec timer so i could shoot bulb bursts of the fireworks. I turned on GPS to allow EXIF embedding, but made sure Astrotracer was off(it was).

I fired several test shots and most, but not all are smeared horizontally like the sample pic posted here. It looks like the camera was panning, but i was not. Some shots were just fine intermittently mixed with these streaked shots. Shutter speeds were from 2-13 sec depending on my aperture.

In a panic with seconds to spare, i removed battery, rebooted camera and raced thru settings turning things on and off, such as shake reduction, GPS, auto leveling, etc.... I never figured out what was causing it, but luckily, the pictures went back to normal after this.

Any ideas what happened here? I'm not blaming the camera at this point, but do not want to experience it again.

thx!

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07-07-2017, 05:10 PM   #2
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Hmm, I wonder if you inadvertently enabled multiple exposure mode?

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07-07-2017, 05:16 PM   #3
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Did you switch off Pixel Shift?
07-07-2017, 06:47 PM   #4
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Strange! It looks like the sensor steadily panned about 1/8th of a frame before stopping or hitting the limit. Moreover, it did not pan straight across but with a very slight drop. And it looks like it panned for much of the 13 seconds before stopping for the rest of the exposure.

I got questions (but no obvious answers...)

Are you sure Astrotracer was off? Is there any way the composition adjust was doing something? Is there anything different in the full EXIF data (compared to shots taken after the battery pull)? Is the framing the same on all the shots? Are the shorter exposure shots totally streaked or are they the unstreaked ones?

Or maybe the Hayward fault let out a nice smooth move!

07-07-2017, 08:26 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Not a Number Quote
Did you switch off Pixel Shift?
i confess, i have never once used pixel shift, so it was off.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 08:27 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Hmm, I wonder if you inadvertently enabled multiple exposure mode?
dont think so, but that would still need the camera to be moving to look like it does, right? as opposed to just burning in the same base image but with moving boats, planes changing.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 08:31 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
Strange! It looks like the sensor steadily panned about 1/8th of a frame before stopping or hitting the limit. Moreover, it did not pan straight across but with a very slight drop. And it looks like it panned for much of the 13 seconds before stopping for the rest of the exposure.

I got questions (but no obvious answers...)

Are you sure Astrotracer was off? Is there any way the composition adjust was doing something? Is there anything different in the full EXIF data (compared to shots taken after the battery pull)? Is the framing the same on all the shots? Are the shorter exposure shots totally streaked or are they the unstreaked ones?

Or maybe the Hayward fault let out a nice smooth move!
ok, good questions here for sure. thanks all.

Astrotracer was off.
I dont have composition adjust (in the live view options) enabled.
I should post one of the 2.5sec shots, which i recall shows a similar range of movement despite the shorter exposure.
I don't know about the EXIF, on cursory review, i saw no differences besides the turning off of the GPS coordinates for some.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 08:38 PM ----------

here is another, this time 2.5 sec



---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 08:40 PM ----------

and then here is a matched pair of images where one is ok and the other is smeared, but with a firework burst that is somewhat sharp...the hell??


both are 6sec shutter, and no apparent differences in EXIF

Last edited by mikeSF; 07-07-2017 at 08:42 PM.
07-07-2017, 09:50 PM   #6
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A perplexing mystery.

QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
...and then here is a matched pair of images where one is ok and the other is smeared, but with a firework burst that is somewhat sharp...the hell??
Emphasis mine. That last part is easy to explain. Something moved throughout the 6 sec exposure to blur the ground, and the firework came in near the end of the exposure so moved for a lesser duration. That doesn't solve what's causing the blur.

The movement seems perfectly horizontal in some, mostly horizontal with slight vertical in others. You say you locked everything down so it's not a loose panning head. The only thing I can think of beyond that is sensor movement glitch, or the roof was vibrating due to an HVAC unit or other equipment. I presume there wasn't an earthquake.

I put the last pair into PS layers and flipped back and forth. #1 (the first half of the pair) shows motion that is mostly left to right with a little downward movement. *If* it was camera or tripod movement, the camera aimed right and a little up during the exposure. #2 is sharper. #2 doesn't start exactly where #1 left off - *if* it's camera movement there was additional movement between those frames.


There's also a green light near center probably a boat. In #1 of the pair it left a short line because something moved in the same direction the boat traveled. In #2 the line is longer, and the continued shift between frames is obvious.
07-07-2017, 09:51 PM - 1 Like   #7
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Tripod wobble? What was the tripod setting on? Many structures are less than rock solid.


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07-07-2017, 10:08 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
Strange motion blur happening from the camera K3II-any ideas what caused this?
Assumption:
Due to the sensor floating on top of a plate, the SR mechanism is always running even when "SR" is switched off, the sensor is magnetically held at a fixed position in the center, that fixed position in the center of the sensor plate is also reach by using the SR servo. In order not to drain battery power, sensor is actively maintained in the center position only when the AE sensor is active. Every time the AE sensor is reactivated, it is possible to hear some noise from the inner part of sensor block, this is actually the SR mechanism reactivating the coil to place the sensor back at the center of the SR plate in anticipation for a new shot. Looks like SR mechanism was drifting away from the center position because of an constant error between actual and expected position of the sensor, a power down / power up cleared the error.


Last edited by biz-engineer; 07-07-2017 at 10:24 PM.
07-07-2017, 10:41 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Tripod wobble? What was the tripod setting on? Many structures are less than rock solid.


Steve
the tripod(Manfrotto aluminum) was locked from all motion, but after the first blurred shot, i went through and re-tightened all clamps and head just in case. problem continued for about 13 more bad exposures intermittently after that.

I was standing on a horizonal rooftop which was tarred and shingled, very flat and very even surface. the tripod could not slip on this surface at all.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 10:44 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Assumption:
Due to the sensor floating on top of a plate, the SR mechanism is always running even when "SR" is switched off, the sensor is magnetically held at a fixed position in the center, that fixed position in the center of the sensor plate is also reach by using the SR servo. In order not to drain battery power, sensor is actively maintained in the center position only when the AE sensor is active. Every time the AE sensor is reactivated, it is possible to hear some noise from the inner part of sensor block, this is actually the SR mechanism reactivating the coil to place the sensor back at the center of the SR plate in anticipation for a new shot. Looks like SR mechanism was drifting away from the center position because of an constant error between actual and expected position of the sensor, a power down / power up cleared the error.
hmm, i just dont understand much of this explanation, but it sounds like you know what happened.

What is the AE sensor? auto exposure sensor?? did it get confused and allow the sensor to drift? Should i be concerned it will happen again? thanks!!
07-07-2017, 10:47 PM - 1 Like   #10
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How long is the cable release? Possible you pulled or pushed on it? I looked at an old cable release I have and it is only 12 in. Doesn't take to much of a jerk to cause what you have. Test this at home and try a small jerk.

Other question about heavy traffic roadway. I chased a problem awhile back with the tripod on attached patio and ended being dog walking on patio.

Clamps tight or not what was tripod sitting on? How well coupled to the roof? Coupling is biggest problem with tripod movement.

RONC

Last edited by rechmbrs; 07-07-2017 at 10:52 PM.
07-07-2017, 11:03 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
... or the roof was vibrating due to an HVAC unit or other equipment. I presume there wasn't an earthquake.
...
no HVAC equip on this building; it's an old Victorian up Telegraph Hill in San Francisco.
no earthquake, thankfully.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 11:15 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by rechmbrs Quote
How long is the cable release? Possible you pulled or pushed on it? I looked at an old cable release I have and it is only 12 in. Doesn't take to much of a jerk to cause what you have. Test this at home and try a small jerk.

Other question about heavy traffic roadway. I chased a problem awhile back with the tripod on attached patio and ended being dog walking on patio.

Clamps tight or not what was tripod sitting on? How well coupled to the roof? Coupling is biggest problem with tripod movement.

RONC
cable release, i tie a loop and it hangs from a non-adjustable protrusion on the tripod to minimize having an effect on the camera body. it was in my hand with cable slack at all times i was pressing it.

roadway traffic below, but very slow cars and three stories down to street level,

coupling was very good - tar and shingle flat roof. tripod has big chunky rubber feet. my camera bag hanging from center column to pull it down a little. minimal wind.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 11:18 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
A perplexing mystery.



Emphasis mine. That last part is easy to explain. Something moved throughout the 6 sec exposure to blur the ground, and the firework came in near the end of the exposure so moved for a lesser duration. That doesn't solve what's causing the blur.

The movement seems perfectly horizontal in some, mostly horizontal with slight vertical in others. You say you locked everything down so it's not a loose panning head. The only thing I can think of beyond that is sensor movement glitch, or the roof was vibrating due to an HVAC unit or other equipment. I presume there wasn't an earthquake.

I put the last pair into PS layers and flipped back and forth. #1 (the first half of the pair) shows motion that is mostly left to right with a little downward movement. *If* it was camera or tripod movement, the camera aimed right and a little up during the exposure. #2 is sharper. #2 doesn't start exactly where #1 left off - *if* it's camera movement there was additional movement between those frames.


There's also a green light near center probably a boat. In #1 of the pair it left a short line because something moved in the same direction the boat traveled. In #2 the line is longer, and the continued shift between frames is obvious.
thanks for the analysis with overlays.
07-07-2017, 11:33 PM - 1 Like   #12
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FWIW, if biz-engineer is right about the AE turning off, there's a setting in there somewhere that controls how long the AE sensor stays on.
07-07-2017, 11:41 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
no HVAC equip on this building; it's an old Victorian up Telegraph Hill in San Francisco.
no earthquake, thankfully.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 11:15 PM ----------



cable release, i tie a loop and it hangs from a non-adjustable protrusion on the tripod to minimize having an effect on the camera body. it was in my hand with cable slack at all times i was pressing it.

roadway traffic below, but very slow cars and three stories down to street level,

coupling was very good - tar and shingle flat roof. tripod has big chunky rubber feet. my camera bag hanging from center column to pull it down a little. minimal wind.

---------- Post added 07-07-2017 at 11:18 PM ----------



thanks for the analysis with overlays.
Cable release have braided metal cover?

I think that the cable plug on side of camera could transmit some movement. Back when I used mine it attached to the shutter so movement would be vertical and tripods are very solid that way. I'd try a test to see how much jerk is necessary. SR probably goes wacky with large enough jerk. I have a seismograph app on my phone. You might look for one to measure any tests.
RONC
07-08-2017, 12:17 AM - 1 Like   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by rechmbrs Quote
I'd try a test to see how much jerk is necessary.
Zero...the cable release is an electrical cabled remote and actuates through a switch. Mike's precautions would have been more than adequate.


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07-08-2017, 12:30 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by rechmbrs Quote
Cable release have braided metal cover?

I think that the cable plug on side of camera could transmit some movement. Back when I used mine it attached to the shutter so movement would be vertical and tripods are very solid that way. I'd try a test to see how much jerk is necessary. SR probably goes wacky with large enough jerk. I have a seismograph app on my phone. You might look for one to measure any tests.
RONC
neither the camera nor tripod moved. i seems it was likely a drifting sensor as biz-engineer explained
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