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help with sx 70 hs (1 Viewer)

hi all I am struggling to get sharp pics using the above camera any advice would be appreciated this bird was on almost full zoom 1600th/sec 800iso f6.5 light not great the second pic is even worse am I missing a trick the sx 50 hs seemed to produce better pics or perhaps I am more critical as I have just started using DPP Thanks ps I am a complete novice by the way but love getting out :)
 

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MalR

Well-known member
I think it's generally accepted that the SX50 had better image quality than either of its successors. Having said that, you were setting a small-sensor camera quite a challenge by attempting to photograph those woodpeckers in such poor light. The second image in particular is ruined by noise.

Have you had more success in good light or are you struggling in all conditions?

It's really important to understand and work with the limitations of this type of camera. The huge zoom is all very well, but the small sensor and slow aperture at the long end mean that they struggle in all but good light.

I went from the SX50 to the Sony RX10 IV. While its sensor is still small, it's significantly bigger than those in the SX series, and the lens is F4 at the long end. But I still don't like using it in poor light.

Malcolm
 
I think it's generally accepted that the SX50 had better image quality than either of its successors. Having said that, you were setting a small-sensor camera quite a challenge by attempting to photograph those woodpeckers in such poor light. The second image in particular is ruined by noise.

Have you had more success in good light or are you struggling in all conditions?

It's really important to understand and work with the limitations of this type of camera. The huge zoom is all very well, but the small sensor and slow aperture at the long end mean that they struggle in all but good light.

I went from the SX50 to the Sony RX10 IV. While its sensor is still small, it's significantly bigger than those in the SX series, and the lens is F4 at the long end. But I still don't like using it in poor light.

Malcolm
Malcolm thanks I have had the camera around 2 weeks now and I am struggling to be fair I have had some good results today in bright light and my settings in tv/v are probably miles away from where they should be the view finder is a lot better and the auto focus .to be fair the woodpecker altho on full zoom was pretty close to me I hope as I am a novice that my settings are off and I can improve a little. I said to my wife today actually that I cannot yet get along with the camera and want a new one - her look was not very pleasing :( but The Sony RX10 IV looks like a step up except the zoom but my thinking is would a crop of an image on the Sony at 25x to 50x be better than an image on the canon at 50x :)
 

MalR

Well-known member
I'm not sure whether a cropped image from the Sony would be better than an image taken with the Canon at full zoom, but the larger sensor on the Sony means that images taken in good light do stand up well to quite severe cropping. This, to a certain extent, negates the relative lack of reach of the lens.

The Sony also has a feature called Clear Image Zoom, which doubles the equivalent focal length to 1200mm, although it's only available when shooting Jpeg, not raw, so I don't use it.

Having said all that, one major reason why I opted for the Sony was the fact that is uses a phase detect autofocus system, which is excellent for birds in flight. That might not be important to you.

Also, of course, the Sony is significantly more expensive.

Malcolm
 
Thanks Malcolm I do try and take pictures of birds in flight quite often and have had some success with the sx 50 and a couple of slower birds have come out ok with the 70,Sony is a lot more expensive yes but if what I am reading then I think perhaps the Sony may be the way to go,a lot of my photos are at the long end though as I usualy have the family with me and any close up wildlife usualy scarpered due to the noise of my children and dog :)
 
Malcolm I took these today in good light and they are to me an improvement on a lot of my pics a liitle bit of auto correct,if I could get most of my images somewhere close I would be ok with them IMG_0233.JPG
 

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MalR

Well-known member
As a self-described novice, you should be pleased with those, Alan. Given that you've only had your camera for a couple of weeks, I think it's worth you perservering with it for a while yet rather than switching to a different model. It probably took me a month to become comfortable with the Sony RX10, although admittedly that was a completely new camera for me whereas you've stayed with Canon.

FolIowing our discussion about the merits of cropping an image taken with the Sony RX10 compared to one taken at full zoom on your SX70, I was out with the Sony today, and in the hope that it might be useful to you, here are two shots I took showing the original, uncropped/unprocessed image and then the cropped/processed one.

Whether the SX70 at full zoom would have performed better, only you can say. Also, of course, what you ultimately do with your images will influence how much loss of detail by cropping you are prepared to tolerate. For my purposes, the detail in these images after cropping is acceptable.

Malcolm
 

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As a self-described novice, you should be pleased with those, Alan. Given that you've only had your camera for a couple of weeks, I think it's worth you perservering with it for a while yet rather than switching to a different model. It probably took me a month to become comfortable with the Sony RX10, although admittedly that was a completely new camera for me whereas you've stayed with Canon.

FolIowing our discussion about the merits of cropping an image taken with the Sony RX10 compared to one taken at full zoom on your SX70, I was out with the Sony today, and in the hope that it might be useful to you, here are two shots I took showing the original, uncropped/unprocessed image and then the cropped/processed one.

Whether the SX70 at full zoom would have performed better, only you can say. Also, of course, what you ultimately do with your images will influence how much loss of detail by cropping you are prepared to tolerate. For my purposes, the detail in these images after cropping is acceptable.

Malcolm
Malcolm many thanks and thanks for sharing the cropped images I would be very happy with also- I think the detail on the originals are great and I am not convinced the 70 matches these, Catching a bird in flight is a different beast to master altogether and something I have not come close to mastering I will persevere a while longer thanks for the candid advise Al
 

BruceBerman

Well-known member
Malcolm many thanks and thanks for sharing the cropped images I would be very happy with also- I think the detail on the originals are great and I am not convinced the 70 matches these, Catching a bird in flight is a different beast to master altogether and something I have not come close to mastering I will persevere a while longer thanks for the candid advise Al
Malcolm has given you some great advice, Alan. About 2 years ago I upgraded my SX-60 and bought the RX-10, Model 4. I won't say that I don't have any complaints but as a former professional photographer, now retired, who absolutely does not want to carry a DSLR with a long lens, IMHO the Sony is a great compromise. But, compromise it is and I often still get crappy shots in low light situations and with the smaller-than-DSLR-sensor, I still cannot enlarge the images as much as I'd like without losing detail. However, my images are head and shoulders above what they were with my Canon. I posted some pics from my Texas trip a couple of weeks ago and you can see the detail that just isn't there with the Canon. I'll attach a few for you to examine. Hope they look decent as I've had to downsize them to around 1280 X 900. The oriole and the warbler were in low-light conditions. Good luck!
 

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Bruce hi, thanks for taking the time to get in touch your pics look great to me , I am still getting to grips with the 70 and believe I will probably swap to the Sony at some point if it had a 40 or 50x zoom then I would have one now :) some of my pics are of a quality that I am happy with but saying that most are of relatively still subjects and I also think I need to get to grips with settings as probably my photos would improve if I had chosen the right setting or shutter speed for example - So on this front I cannot blame the camera plus all my shots are hand held, its a fine line at the moment whether I stay with this camera or not and my wife would not be too pleased if I changed so quickly as she rightly points out that the images only get shared on social media and never printed so "be happy" with what you spotted Below is a few of my recent shots, thanks and any advice is more than welcome
 

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BruceBerman

Well-known member
Bruce hi, thanks for taking the time to get in touch your pics look great to me , I am still getting to grips with the 70 and believe I will probably swap to the Sony at some point if it had a 40 or 50x zoom then I would have one now :) some of my pics are of a quality that I am happy with but saying that most are of relatively still subjects and I also think I need to get to grips with settings as probably my photos would improve if I had chosen the right setting or shutter speed for example - So on this front I cannot blame the camera plus all my shots are hand held, its a fine line at the moment whether I stay with this camera or not and my wife would not be too pleased if I changed so quickly as she rightly points out that the images only get shared on social media and never printed so "be happy" with what you spotted Below is a few of my recent shots, thanks and any advice is more than welcome
You've got some nice images there, Alan. If it's okay, I'll share a bit of knowledge.

I think you mentioned usually using the TV mode which controls the shutter speed. CORRECT! I almost always use that setting. There are two motions you need to stop and TV controls the shutter speed which controls the appearance of motion. Those motions are any movement of your subject and the "shake" of your hands when you are holding the camera. When you are at full zoom, any motion will be exaggerated and your images will not be sharp if your shutter speed is set too low. A rule of thumb that I learned in college is the formula 1/the focal length of the lens for your shutter speed to eliminate camera shake. So, if you are zoomed in to 1000mm, your shutter speed should be set to 1/1000 or higher. I usually shoot at 1/2000 or 1/2400 if I can, that is if there is enough light to use such a fast shutter speed. Although the Sony lens only zooms to 600mm, the larger sensor DOES enable more enlargement without the image breaking apart and is generally superion to the SX-70. Still, it's not a DSLR. Here are examples of disappointing images shot with my Sony where the details were lost.

In the first shot, the wagtail was in good light but the image had to be enlarged so much that it pushed the sensor past its limits. In the second shot, same problem with enlarging AND the bird was in shadow.
 

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Bruce many thanks again altho your first shot of the wagtail looks perfectly fine and detailed to me and the second one also I would be happy with, I managed to get some decent shots of a gull this evening and I was on a high shutter speed but the images would only take the smallest of crop . saying this I wonder if you first image heavily cropped at 600mm would result in the same quality if I had used the 1000mm on the 70- it is surely a conundrum :) But I am in no doubt the the quality of the Sony out performs mine and so it should - the zoom factor and crop is something I would like to explore further ,thanks again
 

BruceBerman

Well-known member
Bruce many thanks again altho your first shot of the wagtail looks perfectly fine and detailed to me and the second one also I would be happy with, I managed to get some decent shots of a gull this evening and I was on a high shutter speed but the images would only take the smallest of crop . saying this I wonder if you first image heavily cropped at 600mm would result in the same quality if I had used the 1000mm on the 70- it is surely a conundrum :) But I am in no doubt the the quality of the Sony out performs mine and so it should - the zoom factor and crop is something I would like to explore further ,thanks again
Guess it's my pro photographer's eye. :-D I'm a bit demanding when it comes to my images WHICH, like you, I'm basically only posting on social media. Stick to your SX-70 for now and get the most out of it. When it's time to replace it, or when your wife isn't looking, see what else is available.
 

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