Cameras forum

General discussion

Basketball pics in Gym are dark.

by naga1209 / March 3, 2006 7:40 AM PST

I have an HP 935 Photosmart that I am having trouble with so I plan to buy a new camera. But the only complaint we had with the HP was that VB or BB (action) pictures inside a gymnasium always turn out so dark.

Some claim that is normal for a digital camera while others say a faster 'write' speed memory card will help. Now I hear that a camera with greater ISO limits would solve it.

I am shopping for a new camera.

Comments about this problem and recommendations as to a new camera that won't have the same problem would be greatly appreciated.

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The problem of dark shots is that the camera did not get
by Kiddpeat / March 3, 2006 9:54 AM PST

enough light, but you are not telling us enough to say why that happened. It is no more 'normal' for a digital camera to do this than it is for a film camera to do it. A faster writing speed has nothing to do with how much light the camera is getting.

Did you have the flash on? Some cameras may snap the shutter to fast if a flash is used in a gym. The flash will not be effective in such a large place, but the camera may assume that it will be. ISO can help somewhat. The two other things which control the amount of light are aperture and shutter speed. How were these set?

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camera settings
by naga1209 / March 4, 2006 12:35 AM PST

Having never taken "Photography 101", we simply use the camera's auto settings 90% of the time. We've occasionally used the "action" mode, but never saw a difference in quality.

I do generally increase the "exposure compensation" setting when filming indoors to help as much as possible.

I use Picasa2 editing software and did some searching and found information about each picture (prior to today I didn't know it existed).

I see that most of my "dark indoor VB or BB pics", taken using the camera's "auto" setting, have the following characteristics:

- flash on
- aperture f/4.8
- exposure time 1/125
- ISO 200

A few with "flash off" that are also equally dark have settings of:
- aperture f/4.8
- exposure time 1/125
- ISO ranging from 7760 to 10960!!!!

I found a few that looked pretty good, and the settings are:

- flash on
- aperture f/3.2
- exposure time 1/90
- ISO 177

Now what can I learn from this???

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The photos that worked better had more light.
by Kiddpeat / March 4, 2006 5:23 AM PST
In reply to: camera settings

The aperture was wider (3.2 rather than 4.8) which let in more light. The shutter was open longer (1/90 rather than 1/125) which also let in more light.

I would turn the flash off in a large area like a gym. It's not helping. Figure out what setting gave you the 3.2 and the 90. Use that setting, or study the manual and find out how to use the manual controls.

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Camera Settings
by snapshot2 Forum moderator / March 4, 2006 7:30 AM PST
In reply to: camera settings

I agree with Kiddpeat.....turn that flash off.

Another way to get more light is to not use the optical zoom. Some of your shots had a f-stop setting of f4.8 - this means you had the lens set at 3X zoom.

If you use no zoom, the camera can shoot at f2.6

Most lenses will lose light when zoomed.
Your lens is rated f2.6-f4.8
Which means at no zoom it is f2.6 and with 3X zoom it is f4.8

..............

Since you camera has manual controls, try this.
Set the camera to Shutter Priority mode.
Set the f-stop at about 1/60th of a second (you will need to read the manual to see how to do this).
Do not use flash.
Do not use zoom.

This will give you the best chance of getting a good exposure.

Make sure you take the photo with the camera set for 5 megapixels. This will let you do some cropping of the photo with software. When you can't zoom, you can always crop, to get closer to the center of attention.

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Basketball in Gym
by snapshot2 Forum moderator / March 3, 2006 11:22 AM PST

Shooting action shots in low light situations is very difficult for most cameras that cost less than about $850.

A fast memory card will not help.

A higher ISO setting will help.
But most lower cost cameras only have a maximum ISO setting of 400.

You might try the Fujifilm S5200, it has a maximum ISO setting of 1600.

Here is a short course in understanding exposure settings (Shutter speed, Aperture, and ISO):

http://www.pbase.com/otfchallenge/the_basics

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Actually, Photoshop might be helpful !
by jump1127 / March 3, 2006 12:50 PM PST

In this case, you can use Photoshop manipulating your shootings. You can either correct the exposure using adjust level ( for midtone, highlight, and shadow ) or adjust highlight & shadow directly. Nevertheless, do not overadjust the highlight & shadow since the picture may end up too unrealistic. I also add noise ninja plug-in to Photoshop CS2; it is so powerful for reducing unwanted noise level. I'm not sure whether your camera allow shooting in RAW. Here's a link shown how pictures can be improved using Photoshop; unfortunately, it's in Thai. But, it may give you some clues how to correct bad shooting pictures.


http://www.rpst-digital.org/forum/showthread.php?t=9213

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