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View Full Version : New camera, soft pictures...



idean
10-25-2004, 11:24 AM
Just got my FZ20 a week ago from CC, and have been struggling with soft focus. The pictures are just so much softer than what I'm used to from my old Canon S40, that I'm thinking that it must be defective?

Has anyone else noticed soft focus pictures? This is with the stabilizer on Mode 2 (which is supposed to keep quality high), JPG in Fine mode (Tiff doesn't seem any better), with and without flash.

Pictures are too large to upload to show, but I took a small section of one from and am including it...

Your comments would be appreciated - I only have 4 more days to return it (and eat the restocking fee).

lumixfan
10-25-2004, 11:37 AM
Not sure, but if you post the EXIF data, people here may be able to help you better. By soft focus, do you mean not focussed or shallow depth of field. What autofocus method have you chosen.
Is it the one in center, or three in a row, or 3x3 matrix kind of focus method. You may be getting some portion sharply focused? Also try on a tripod with aperture f/8. It should be sharp.

I dont have at this point doubt it will be defective

judge9847
10-25-2004, 01:18 PM
Yep, the EXIF data is going to be all-important.

It does look with this image as though the camera was towards or at the extremes of the zoom lens, even possibly into using the digital zoom. It depends on the other settings on the camera at the time so the EXIF data would be a real help.

genece
10-25-2004, 02:21 PM
Try spot focus once, There is something I do not understand about that 9 pt thing.

idean
10-25-2004, 03:45 PM
Yep, the EXIF data is going to be all-important.

It does look with this image as though the camera was towards or at the extremes of the zoom lens, even possibly into using the digital zoom. It depends on the other settings on the camera at the time so the EXIF data would be a real help.

I don't use digital zoom at all - this picture was wide-angle. Remember that this isn't the whole pic - I had to clip a representative section to upload. This particular picture is of the entire car. The whole pic, and most pics (>80-90%) looks like this with nothing as "crisp" as my other digital cameras take. I use mainly Spot or 1-area focusing. I leave contrast and sharpness on Standard, and I've tried setting Noise reduction to Low.

I don't know of a good way to copy the EXIF data in Adobe Album 2.0 (full) or JASC 8.1 or Adobe Elements... here's a retype of some info from JASC 8.1:


Exposure Time: 1/125s
f4.0
Normal Program
ISO: 80
Metering Mode: Pattern
Flash: suppressed
Focal length: 6.7mm


From EXIF-O-Matic:


Make Panasonic
Model DMC-FZ20
Orientation top, left side
X Resolution 1/72 inches
Y Resolution 1/72 inches
Resolution Unit Inches
Date/Time 2004:10:22 14:31:52
YCbCr Positioning Datum point
Exposure Time 0.01 sec
F-Number F4
Exposure Program Program normal
ISO Speed Ratings 80
Exif Version 2.20
Date/Time Original 2004:10:22 14:31:52
Date/Time Digitized 2004:10:22 14:31:52
Components Configuration YCbCr
Compressed Bits Per Pixel 4 bits/pixel
Exposure Bias Value 0.66
Max Aperture Value F2.8
Metering Mode Multi-segment
Light Source Unknown
Flash Unknown (16)
Focal Length 6.7 mm
FlashPix Version 1.00
Color Space sRGB
Exif Image Width 2560 pixels
Exif Image Height 1920 pixels
Sensing Method One-chip color area sensor
File Source Digital Still Camera (DSC)
Scene Type Directly photographed image
Unknown tag (0xa401) 0
Unknown tag (0xa402) 2
Unknown tag (0xa403) 0
Unknown tag (0xa404) 0
Unknown tag (0xa405) 40
Unknown tag (0xa406) 0
Unknown tag (0xa407) 0
Unknown tag (0xa408) 0
Unknown tag (0xa409) 0
Unknown tag (0xa40a) 0
Unknown tag (0xc4a5) PrintIM
Compression JPEG compression
Thumbnail Offset 6804 bytes
Thumbnail Length 8865 bytes
Thumbnail Data [8865 bytes of thumbnail data]
Interoperability Index Recommended Exif Interoperability Rules (ExifR98)
Interoperability Version 1.00

BryanMsi
10-25-2004, 10:48 PM
I would try one thing, and then take it back.

The one thing is to firmly press the autofocus switch on the left side of the lens up. It could be that the camera is in manual mode.


If that doesn't fix the problem...based on your shot and the settings you listed, I would say the camera is defective.

For starters, the image you shared is vertical which means most of it should be in focus even if the camera is choosing an autofocus point outside where you thought it should. Second, this is a brightly illuminated contrasty image that should have no problem for the autofocus system.

The Lumix is capable of extremely sharp images...I would say yours has a problem.

One other trick you might try...place a yardstick on your kitchen table and sit at one end of the yardstick with it pointing away from you. Point your camera at a specific spot on the yardstick - like the 18 inch point - and then take your shot. If the image before or after the spot you aimed the camera at is sharply focused, your autofocus system is off.

judge9847
10-26-2004, 10:48 AM
I would try one thing, and then take it back.

The one thing is to firmly press the autofocus switch on the left side of the lens up. It could be that the camera is in manual mode. If that doesn't fix the problem...based on your shot and the settings you listed, I would say the camera is defective.
Absolutely correct. There is nothing in the EXIF data to suggest the camera was using settings that might contribute to that sort of image quality. Panasonics do deliver sharp images thanks in the large part to the Leica lens.

Look on the side of the lens at the AF/MF switch as advised - there's a strong possibility it's in the MF position.

If not, and if the other experiment doesn't produce the expected results, your camera is faulty.

idean
10-26-2004, 11:49 AM
Thanks for the replies. I'll take it back for a replacement and let you all know how I fare.

skyfree
10-27-2004, 04:45 AM
try to turn off image stabilization.

idean
10-28-2004, 06:38 PM
Thanks for the replies. I'll take it back for a replacement and let you all know how I fare.

I have my replacement, and I am now very happy! Looks like I had a bad one - it seems the lens was misadjusted, with the focus point off from true.

Thank you all for your time in examining and answering - I was hoping I just had a defective one, because I so much wanted to love this camera. My only other possibility (Nikon D70) would have cost me far more while not approaching the zoom level and would have been far bulkier.

Now I have to find a nice big (1GB) SD card.