Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

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Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby Sunil.G » Sun Apr 06, 2014 7:09 pm

Guys i have 3 concerns as i am bit new to this and this photography bug is keeping me busy and very much interested :) eventhough my questions might be silly but i need to learn kindly assist me on this..

1)i have been trying to get some snaps majorly of the birds in flight or sometimes when they are resting and i normally use Tamron 18-270MM DI II VC lens as the birds are quite far and the lens is always in its Max Zoom range of 270MM, focus is in AF-C (some times it creeps) , Shutter Priotity Mode, Shutter speed of Constant 1/1000, ISO 200(because of brighter light) and Aperture Varies between f7 to f9, AF area is Dynamic Area Focus ,and Metering normally Spot Metering and JPEG format.when i take the snap and Crop it the subject is not sharp and crisp as i want and some times the Feathers are Crisp but Eyes and Beak are little blurred.. inspite of Lower ISO some times i see the Grains.. what should i do to get Crisp image as the birds are constantly in motion and i cannot keep a constant focus locked on the eye..

2) I do have Nikkor 55-200MM VR AF-S lens which i dont use much but by using this will there be any difference in clarity but again i have to sacrifice on extra 70mm zoom if am not using the Tamron lens but again will this make any difference when i crop the image kindly suggest..

3) Also planing to buy Sigma 150-500MM F5-6.3 DG HSM lens again here my question is although it is an HSM lens but it is DG not DC so will the Auto Focus work on my APSC camera without the built in Focus Motor (Nikon D3100) ? if it does not work then is there any good Zoom Lens with Auto focus with in the same Budget as of this Sigma Lens which is compatable with my DX camera kindly suggest..


Here are few snaps

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Sunil.G
Nikon D3100,Nikon 18-55,Nikon 55-200,Tamron 18-270, Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM.
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby oldCarlos » Mon Apr 07, 2014 8:19 pm

Hi Sunil. Presumably these were mainly taken at some distance (less than 1MB crop) so you aren't going to achieve amazing detail.

`Cropping` a bit less will give you better images. Get your ISO down to 100, which will give a faster F# (F5.6 on distant subjects is fine. It's only when they are much nearer that F7 - F9 will help you with DOF)

You can slow the shutter down to around 1/250th sec on static birds, but 1/1000th - 1/2000th (depending how fast they're moving) for birds in flight.

Also try dialling in some + EV if against the sky/brighter background (try 2/3rds first, but in strong light probably much more) or - EV against darker BG.

Re lenses, I think you're probably beyond the limit of your existing Tamron. Have you seen the new Tamron 150-600mm? (out soon in Nikon fit) But maybe not within your budget yet.

Also, do you have photoshop, or any other programmes for post-processing your images?

I just lightened one of your images from Flickr, hope you don't mind (i'll delete it if you wish) but although there isn't much detail, it gives you an idea of how PP'ing can help.

Image Image
Image btw,He who dies with the most toys, WINS!
Nikon D800E & D700 bodies + Nikon 200-400mm F4 VR1, 50mm F1.4G, 16-35mm f/4G VR, 105 F2.8 VR macro, 70-300mm lenses. A couple of filters, Giotto tripod & ballhead. Lowepro Slingshot 302 AW
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby 4xxxx » Tue Apr 08, 2014 1:58 am

+1 to Carlos comments, with birds and other fast moving objects high shutter speed is the only way to go and let the camera choose the aperture and ISO and use the best quality setting the camera can produce. I’m not sure if your shots are heavily cropped or its camera shake, some lenses are quite heavy when first used and it takes a bit of practice to get used to the weight and panning smoothly.

Not sure about keeping focus on the eye as it’s so small, If I focus on the bird I still can get a sharp finish with 21 point area focus. I think you will find you get lens creep with all long lenses when pointed at a certain angle.

If you don;t have editing software there are many free on the web.

Your post mentioned the Sigma 150-500 as a possibility, from test shots a guy shot for me on my card using the same camera turned me off the Sigma due to poor IQ. Although the guy used auto setting for the shots I would have expected them to be better as I’ve seen great shots with the Sigma.

As Carlos mentioned the Tamron 150-600 will give the Sigma 150-500 competition and I think around the same cost. Link below for the Tamron shots at 600mm.

viewtopic.php?f=18&t=33479

Have Fun,

Cheers
Nikon D7000, Nikkor 80 - 400G, Nikkor 18- 200 VR II, f3.5-5.6.
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby Sunil.G » Tue Apr 08, 2014 5:37 am

Carlos thanks for the tips and also the for the snap it looks better and bright :) i have installed PS C6 but not sure how to use it need to spend some time on tutorials on using Photoshop..
Also regarding lens few suggested me on Sigma bcoz tamrons 200-500 is expensive than Sigma 150-500 as you told if Tamron is coming out with 150-600 then probably will wait until its launched for Nikon bodys..
Sunil.G
Nikon D3100,Nikon 18-55,Nikon 55-200,Tamron 18-270, Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM.
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby Sunil.G » Tue Apr 08, 2014 5:51 am

@4xxxx thanks for your inputs too.. let me go out and try some more now focusing on birds and regarding Sigma lens i dont own one but few of them advised me to go for sigma rather than tamron although they are not pros but they have been using Sigma lenses as i am investing so i need to know which one is good for nikon APSC cams Tamron or Sigma ?
Sunil.G
Nikon D3100,Nikon 18-55,Nikon 55-200,Tamron 18-270, Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM.
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby 4xxxx » Wed Apr 09, 2014 3:17 am

Sunil, You still can get good shots at 200 – 270 mm. This bird shot was a grab shot as it was flying past, although cropped I think it’s not to bad, I always park my camera shutter speed at 1/1000 in the event of fast flying birds/planes which means I just have to turn the selector to S if I’m in another mode.

App mode @ 200 mm, f5.6, 1/2000 sec, ISO 200 and –0.7 EV

Link here. search.php?keywords=petrel&terms=all&author=4xxxx&sc=1&sf=all&sk=t&sd=d&sr=posts&st=0&ch=300&t=0&submit=Search


Cheers
Nikon D7000, Nikkor 80 - 400G, Nikkor 18- 200 VR II, f3.5-5.6.
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby robbon44 » Fri Apr 11, 2014 10:38 pm

Ditch ps and go for lightroom. :D
Canon 550D, Canon EFS 17-85 IS USM, Canon EF 75-300 IS USM, Canon EFS 10-22mm USM, Canon EF35mm F2.

Got some of the gear but really still no idea...:)
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Re: Need advise on the Sharpness of the Picture.

Postby maxjj » Sat Apr 12, 2014 10:03 am

totally agree with all of above,

shoot raw and get LR.

I use center focus only , or use one of the cross focus points only and try and get the eye or head. Using more focus points confuses things.High shutter speed is a must, iso noise is no big deal , especially if you use LR to fix it

I find using multiple focus points creates problems, as you don`t know what you are focusing on. Try and get a shot with camera in portrait mode, ie turn it vertical.

Noise is better than motion blur.

Get focus spot on.

I have a couple of custom setting for birds in camera set up

C1 AI Servo with iso 400 and f 6.3 - for tracking bird in flight and in good light
C2 Manual mode with 1/800 AV 7.1 and auto iso and AI Servo - for bird in flight when light not so good
C3 iso 800, one shot focus and f 5.6. for most bird photography, freezing birds in action.

I leave metering in evaluative mode, personally I believe the camera gets it right more often when it meters everything. Spot metering is too hit and miss, due to the small spot its easy to get the camera to meter on the wrong thing. When shooting a bird into bright light I increase exposure by a stop, for me its easier to get good results by just dial a bit more or less exposure.

then I generally use av mode to fine tune for local conditions.

take lots, have fun :D
Canon Powershot S95, Canon 6D,7D, Canon 40 2.8 STM, Tamron 24-70 2.8 VC, Canon 17-40 L, Canon 15-85, Canon 85 1.8, Sigma 30 1.4, 50mm 1.8, Canon 100 2.8L Macro, Canon 70-300L +Kenko 1.4 Pro 300DGX, Canon 430EX II and RS 4 Classic
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