How sharp is sharp?


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David

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Mar 21, 2002
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I downloaded the images I shot with my digital cam and was pleased with most of the images. But the horror comes when I zoom in on them!!! I realize they are not so sharp afterall -- blurred like out-of-focus if not due to camera shake.

So how sharp is sharp? Does it mean to capture a good image, if I enlarge it I should still see a reasonable amount of details? (I'm not referring to the images becoming pixelated. This is expected if one goes beyond a certain limit...)
 

Falcon

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The images you view on the LCD screen are very misleading. One way is to zoom in when you are at preview mode of your camera. This is one way to check when the subject is in focus or not.
 

Jed

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Sharpness should be self-explanatory really. Something's either sharp or it's not. Below is an example of what a sharp shot should look like:


The full frame view.


A cropped portion of the shot. If you are looking at this on a 72dpi monitor, then the effective enlargement size is 28"x42". No unsharp mask has been applied, so the shot could appear to be sharper. This is the kind of detail that you can pull out of a shot with good focusing and technique.
 

erwinx

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To continue the example I will post crops of raw images. No processing whatsoever. I've posted the original resized images in the World of Nature forum earlier




Coolscan IV scan. Using a teleconverter
somewhere in world of nature...


Coolscan IV. No teleconverter. (my Crowned Pigeon shot)
http://forums.clubsnap.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=4872



Nikon Coolpix 995 JPEG fine
http://forums.clubsnap.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=4761


p.s. testing homex.coolconnect webspace. hope the bandwidth is ok.
 

rumraisin

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Originally posted by David
I downloaded the images I shot with my digital cam and was pleased with most of the images. But the horror comes when I zoom in on them!!! I realize they are not so sharp afterall -- blurred like out-of-focus if not due to camera shake.

So how sharp is sharp? Does it mean to capture a good image, if I enlarge it I should still see a reasonable amount of details? (I'm not referring to the images becoming pixelated. This is expected if one goes beyond a certain limit...)
What cam are you using? If you have a cam which can shoot in RAW format, like a G2, you should try it. It yields sharper, finer-detailed, unpixellated images especially when blown up big.
 

Goondu

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Originally posted by rumraisin


What cam are you using? If you have a cam which can shoot in RAW format, like a G2, you should try it. It yields sharper, finer-detailed, unpixellated images especially when blown up big.
Your reply is a little misleading, shooting raw does not gives you sharper images. Raw only gives you the ability and more flexibility to carry out post processing of your images.

Like what Jed said, good focusing and techniques are important. :)
 

rumraisin

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Originally posted by Goondu


Your reply is a little misleading, shooting raw does not gives you sharper images. Raw only gives you the ability and more flexibility to carry out post processing of your images.

Like what Jed said, good focusing and techniques are important. :)
But I experimented and it seems that all other things being equal, the RAW image is clearer and more real. Isn't something lost in the translation to Jpeg?
 

Goondu

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#9
Originally posted by rumraisin


But I experimented and it seems that all other things being equal, the RAW image is clearer and more real. Isn't something lost in the translation to Jpeg?
You need to convert to either Jpeg or Tiff since you cannot see RAW image in the first place. Yes, I do agree that the camera in-processing is not as good as some of the commercial software available. This may lead to some loss of quality.

However, this loss may not be significant to render the picture as not sharp.

For your information, I have shot both Jpeg and RAW modes before and some of the Jpegs are even better than those shot in RAW and doing the conversion via software.
 

Necroist

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#11
How do you guys maginify one part of the pic in photoshop? Can't seem to do that. My way was to crop and then image size. Wondering if there's another way?

Oh btw, that cat... so similar to my favourite cat out of my 7 cats... Except it has a black lip hehe and black eyerings.

Paws are black, grey and black stripes... damn.. wish I could take a shot of it...
 

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