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  1. #1
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Digital Camera Advice

    I have a Sony DSC-P9 digital camera that I bought 4
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  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Al,

    I have seen vey similar problems with other similar cameras. The flash just doesn't provide sufficient lighting for subjects that are not close to the camera.

    StuartR

  3. #3
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Hi Al

    The simplest answer is that a flash only has a certain range. If you zoom , you are effectively seeing a "narrower" view of the world which is an enlarged image further away(blue cone below). When you set off your flash (grey cone below) it can only go to a certain point.

    In the old days all we did was open the F stop/aperture or lengthen the exposure time, so the only thing to do is go over to manual...if you can with that model and increase the exposure time.
    Jerry

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    You're probably correct, Stuart. She was about 30 feet away when I zoomed in for that shot. Afterward, when she was sitting in the gallery with the rest of the participants, I took this shot which was about 10-15 feet away and it's a little bit better, but not good. Maybe it's one of those things one has to live with. I do know that if there is SUFFICIENT lighting that I can take a shot without the flash, the zoom works just fine for my amateur needs.
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  5. #5
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Thanks a lot, Jerry! That graphic illustrates the problem nicely. I'll have to poke around in the camera settings to see if there's anything I can do to increase the exposure time. As you can see in the referenced review, it seems to bear out your illustration when it says: Flash range 0.5 - 3.8 m (1.8 - 12.5 ft). So, I may be swimming upstream but I'll do a little more playing in the camera settings to see what I can come up with. Thanks again...

  6. #6
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Hi Al

    Now somewhere or the other I seem to remember a few tricks to increase power of the flash...I'll have to dig it out if I can. In the interim it appears the Sony DSC-P9 seems to have a thing called Flash +/- compensation and Slow Sync (Twilight Portrait scene mode) I don't know what they are but it sounds like something to investigate
    Jerry

  7. #7
    4 Star Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Al,
    I would not label myself a camera buff, but here are some thoughts from a non expert photographer. By the way, if you want me to give your photo a "digital adjustment" I would be glad to see if I can improve this special photo for you - PM me.

    Your camera has a flash range of 12.5 ft., and that is probably a generous spec number from Sony. So if you are farther away than that you are pushing you illumination luck. However, you camera has flash compensation settings and I suggest you play with this in some test shots. Flash output increases or decreases according to the amount of flash compensation (on some cameras anyway).

    On a dimly lit, distance shot like you took, I would opt for smaller optical zoom (more light into camera) and a full resolution setting (2272x1704) and do the extra zoom with the digital image on the computer. Also, I would make sure the camera is set to fine and not standard image quality. Lastly, I would set the white balance to fluorescent mode if that is the bulk of the illumination in the room.

    Paul

  8. #8
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Right, I knew it was in the dark <img src=/S/pun.gif border=0 alt=pun width=22 height=18> recesses of my mind. I call it ASA (American Standards Association) equivalentg to the ISO number (International Standards Organisation)

    As I mentioned above you can change light in the DSC-P9 like most cameras. In the DSC-P9 although you can't choose the camera's aperture or shutter speed settings directly, you do have access to a few exposure options, including color balance, image sharpness, metering options, ISO, and light / dark adjustments.

    The higher the ISO number the better "it can see in the dark" but the images may become a bit more grainier. So balance quality over light....your choice but the beauty of the digicam it easier to experiment and not so costly as old film cameras ...enjoy
    Jerry

  9. #9
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    I just went in to the settings and changed the focus to "infinity" and the flash setting to "high" and those were hard to find in the complex menus of the dadburned camera! I took a couple of test shots here in the house, down the hall about 20 feet or so and the result looked a little better. But, I do think the flash "distance" is probably the clue to this whole problem. Jerry: I'm looking in the user manual now for the ISO setting and it says to use a higher number for shooting a fast moving subject or under "darker" conditions, so I'll continue to investigate. Thanks to both of you for joining in...

  10. #10
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Well, at 30 feet, you are about 2.5 times the max distance for the camera's internal flash. If the camera has an external flash attachment (shoe), and you take a lot of inside flash pictures, you might want to consider the purchase of a more powerful exteral flash.
    Legare Coleman

  11. #11
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    You can also improve it some with software. The attached is a copy of the low resolution copy you posted enhances with Paint Shop Pro.
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    Legare Coleman

  12. #12
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    Yeah, that's a tough one, Legare! I do use the camera a lot indoors and 50-50 the flash isn't even required if there's enough light. But on those occasions where there's not, it's a tough question. I've never given a thought to an external flash device, so I don't have any idea if there's something available for this ol' camera or, if so, would it be a waste of money rather than buying a "better" and more capable camera.

  13. #13
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    >fast moving subject or under "darker" conditions

    Spot on Al, in the days when I regularly used my Nikon F3 (see below) and I was taking action shots (normally sport) or indoor shots I would move to 400 ASA to allow higher light capture while retaining the equivalent aperture settings to keep depth of field....you need to set a higher ISO setting for your indoor shots. May I suggest that you keep a marker card in your camera case so that you can adjust the camera settings "on the fly". My F3 used to have a slot in the back which I used to drop a cheat card in for this very reason.

    Sorry, nostalgia here....I still love this camera, it used to go everywhere with me <img src=/S/sad.gif border=0 alt=sad width=15 height=15>


    <IMG SRC=http://www.nikonimaging.com/global/products/filmcamera/slr/1980-1984/f3_high-eyepoint/img/pic_001.jpg>
    Jerry

  14. #14
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    I won't bore the readers with continual sample shots, but I did plow around and saw that ISO was set to "Auto" with available settings of 100, 200 or 400. So, I set it for 400, leaving the focus set for infinity and the flash to the "high" setting I mentioned and a shot taken down my long hallway seems a little better. I need to try it "out in the field" tomorrow to see what I can do at these settings.

    I'm grateful for everyone's help so far. Thanks...

  15. #15
    Platinum Lounger
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    Re: Digital Camera Advice

    I have never failed to be amused by TV coverage of football and rugby matches where general views of the watchers in the stands show random flashes all over the place as people try to take photographs of the action on the pitch tens of metres away, under the misapprehension that the flash will improve the picture!

    John
    <font face="Script MT Bold"><font color=blue><big><big>John</big></big></font color=blue></font face=script>

    Ita, esto, quidcumque...

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