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Thread: Not as sharp as it should be?

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    Not as sharp as it should be?

    Hi all,

    Just was playing around with using RAW instead of JPEG. In Lightroom, I was processing a little bit and when zoomed in as a 1:1 ratio, it looked super grainy. Most of my shots look really grainy when at 1:1, but seem ok when viewing the entire photo. Is this normal?

    Taken on a 7D with 24-105mm f4L and 580EX ii.

    Photo:

    IMG_1097.jpg

    Sharpening:

    Screen Shot 2011-08-18 at 6.24.52 PM.png

    portion of the 1:1 view

    Screen Shot 2011-08-18 at 6.22.57 PM.jpg

  2. #2
    It's all about the Light!
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    EXIF...

    Camera Maker: Canon
    Camera Model: Canon EOS 7D
    Lens: EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM
    Image Date: 2011-08-18 16:18:01 +1000
    Focal Length: 24.0mm
    Focus Distance: 1.23m
    Aperture: f/4.0
    Exposure Time: 0.017 s (1/60)
    ISO equiv: 1600 << Grain!!
    Exposure Bias: none
    Metering Mode: Matrix
    Exposure: program (Auto)
    White Balance: Auto
    Flash Fired: Yes (enforced)
    regards, Kym Gallery Honest & Direct Constructive Critique Appreciated! ©
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kym View Post
    EXIF...

    Camera Maker: Canon
    Camera Model: Canon EOS 7D
    Lens: EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM
    Image Date: 2011-08-18 16:18:01 +1000
    Focal Length: 24.0mm
    Focus Distance: 1.23m
    Aperture: f/4.0
    Exposure Time: 0.017 s (1/60)
    ISO equiv: 1600 << Grain!!
    Exposure Bias: none
    Metering Mode: Matrix
    Exposure: program (Auto)
    White Balance: Auto
    Flash Fired: Yes (enforced)
    That was nice and quick! Thanks Kym.

    While we are on this topic, is there any way of checking the EXIF on a Mac without using Photoshop or importing to Lightroom? I can't seem to find a way like you can with Windows.

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    It's all about the Light!
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    If you use Firefox there are a bunch of EXIF viewers available.
    Google 'firefox exif add-on'

    Probably for Safari as well

    In your image on the 7D ISO 1600 is noisy.

    Check the workflow in the library http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...t_all_together
    (Process noise early in the workflow and sharpening as the last step)

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    Thanks, Kym. I was just doing some further reading on ISO numbers after you posted. Learning a lot. I will take a look at the link you posted also.

    Thanks!

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    Ausphotography Regular agb's Avatar
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    As I see it the biggest problem, and the one which is probably the culprit in causing the noise, is the fact that it is underexposed. Keep the histogram a bit to the right without blowing the highlights will help with keeping noise down to acceptable levels. I do not know how you did that shot but with the flash firing I am surprised that the shutter speed is 1/60 at f4 when the iso is 1600 and you are only 1.25 m away from the subject. I am not up to speed with flash but I am surprised nevertheless. I am sure someone else can help here.
    This is a good essay on what is happening rather than me trying in my clumsy way to explain it.
    One last thing, doing some noise reduction and sharpening is almost always necessary. Just demosaicing a photo is not good enough
    The age of entitlement isn't over, it's just over there where you can't get to it.
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    What's the minimum focus distence on the lens?
    1.23m seems quite close for this type of lens and could well be at the very minimum limit which wouldn't help any.
    I have a 28-135 f4-4.5 Minolta AF lens and minimum focus on this beast is 1.5m (in normal mode, it does have close focus/macro @ 28mm)
    I have found that photos taken at the absolute minimum limit aren't as sharp as those from even just little further into the focus range.
    Mind you this is an old lens and the EF 24-105 may have a lot closer minimum focus (I don't know)
    Just a thought and putting it out there, and may well not be a contributing factor in this case.
    CC always welcome and appreciated.
    Tweaks welcome but please add how and why.



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    Ausphotography Regular agb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CAP View Post
    What's the minimum focus distence on the lens?
    1.23m seems quite close for this type of lens and could well be at the very minimum limit which wouldn't help any.
    I have a 28-135 f4-4.5 Minolta AF lens and minimum focus on this beast is 1.5m (in normal mode, it does have close focus/macro @ 28mm)
    I have found that photos taken at the absolute minimum limit aren't as sharp as those from even just little further into the focus range.
    Mind you this is an old lens and the EF 24-105 may have a lot closer minimum focus (I don't know)
    Just a thought and putting it out there, and may well not be a contributing factor in this case.
    MFD on the 24-105 is 0.45m so there is no problem with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by agb View Post
    As I see it the biggest problem, and the one which is probably the culprit in causing the noise, is the fact that it is underexposed. Keep the histogram a bit to the right without blowing the highlights will help with keeping noise down to acceptable levels. I do not know how you did that shot but with the flash firing I am surprised that the shutter speed is 1/60 at f4 when the iso is 1600 and you are only 1.25 m away from the subject. I am not up to speed with flash but I am surprised nevertheless. I am sure someone else can help here.
    This is a good essay on what is happening rather than me trying in my clumsy way to explain it.
    One last thing, doing some noise reduction and sharpening is almost always necessary. Just demosaicing a photo is not good enough
    To be honest, this was taken on auto while I was testing out my new speedlite and lens. I am going to try lower the ISO and change some other settings when I have a go in manual. It was just something I noticed and wasn't sure what the contributing factor was.

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    Quote Originally Posted by agb View Post
    ..... I do not know how you did that shot but with the flash firing I am surprised that the shutter speed is 1/60 at f4 when the iso is 1600 and you are only 1.25 m away from the subject. I am not up to speed with flash but I am surprised nevertheless. I am sure someone else can help here.
    .....
    By the looks of the 'shadowing' (or more accurately lack of any), there's a very high possibility that the flash head was bounced off the ceiling, and possibly a diffuser dome was also used.
    Normally, when flash is used, ISO is kept to an absolute minimum, and the flash is supposed to control the exposure.
    When you bounce flash you lose a lot of the power of the flash. It makes for much less and softer looking shadows, but the power loss is huge. If you did bounce your flash, did you go the 'whole hog' and set it to 90°? If so, try opening up the angle a bit more to get a bit of direct light from the flash as well as some bounce, or use a white card to re direct a bit more light towards the subject, if you maintain that 90° angle. I think the 580 model is a high end flash from Canon, so it may have an inbuilt pop out whitecard. If you open this up whilst the flash head is at 90°(instead of using a diffuser dome), you'd be surprised at how much extra light throw is directed towards the subject in front of the camera

    That is, if you set the camera to ISO200 or 400 for example, the flash will then create more light to compensate.

    Also of note is that in the exif data, is that the program mode used in the camera is listed as Normal mode!
    Normal??? Normal relative to what? .. Is there an abnormal setting too?
    Was that manual mode? did you set all the variables in the camera yourself, or was it all automagic?

    For exif viewing: If you can find a 'front end' to ExifTool for Mac, then this is probably the ideal solution for exif data management.
    My only issue with exiftool is the commandline interface. For Windows there is ExifToolGUI and GeoSetter that both use it to view and/or edit exif data.. I have no idea on what is available for Mac tho!
    ExifTool itself runs on Mac, so if you feel comfy with using command line go for it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    By the looks of the 'shadowing' (or more accurately lack of any), there's a very high possibility that the flash head was bounced off the ceiling, and possibly a diffuser dome was also used.
    Normally, when flash is used, ISO is kept to an absolute minimum, and the flash is supposed to control the exposure.
    When you bounce flash you lose a lot of the power of the flash. It makes for much less and softer looking shadows, but the power loss is huge. If you did bounce your flash, did you go the 'whole hog' and set it to 90°? If so, try opening up the angle a bit more to get a bit of direct light from the flash as well as some bounce, or use a white card to re direct a bit more light towards the subject, if you maintain that 90° angle. I think the 580 model is a high end flash from Canon, so it may have an inbuilt pop out whitecard. If you open this up whilst the flash head is at 90°(instead of using a diffuser dome), you'd be surprised at how much extra light throw is directed towards the subject in front of the camera

    That is, if you set the camera to ISO200 or 400 for example, the flash will then create more light to compensate.

    Also of note is that in the exif data, is that the program mode used in the camera is listed as Normal mode!
    Normal??? Normal relative to what? .. Is there an abnormal setting too?
    Was that manual mode? did you set all the variables in the camera yourself, or was it all automagic?

    For exif viewing: If you can find a 'front end' to ExifTool for Mac, then this is probably the ideal solution for exif data management.
    My only issue with exiftool is the commandline interface. For Windows there is ExifToolGUI and GeoSetter that both use it to view and/or edit exif data.. I have no idea on what is available for Mac tho!
    ExifTool itself runs on Mac, so if you feel comfy with using command line go for it.
    I used the white flashcard at 90 degrees. I think I should have changed the ISO by the sounds of it. Because it was taken on automatic, I find it strange it chose that ISO though...

    Thanks for that. Took a look and the terminal line is annoying so I might keep trawling around to see what else I could find.

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