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Photography QnA: Digital Image Problems

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Category: What's Wrong With My Photographic Technique? : Problems with Images : Digital Image Problems

Trying to avoid grainy digital images? Wondering how to soften digital images? Ask these questions and more in this Q&A discussion.

Page 2 : 11 -20 of 25 questions

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Photography Question 
Jade Carambot

member since: 11/28/2002
  11 .  Why aren't my pictures coming out clear?
When I first started using the camera with new batteries, it worked fine. I uploaded the pictures onto my computer and they came out clear. Then, later on in the day when I used my camera and uploaded the pictures onto my computer, the image I got back came back all messed up. Also, when I try to use it as a video camera, the same results happen. I don't think its a matter of light.
What's going wrong?

11/28/2002 9:22:56 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member
gregorylagrange.org

member since: 11/11/2003
  Nobody answered. Oh well, it's been a year, but I'll try anyway. First, messed up can mean many things. Are they only good during the middle of the day, or only when you have fresh batteries, and what does messed up mean anyway. If they are dark, you film speed setting may not be high enough for later in the day. I know it's a digital camera, but I still say film speed.

11/16/2003 1:20:57 AM

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Photography Question 
Robin A. 

member since: 11/16/2002
  12 .  light colors come out pink
How do I correc this? When I shoot a digital pic with my Polaroid PDC640 the light or white colors come out "Hot Pink" any suggestions? I have "Ulead" editing software but I can't seem to take it out with that either.I shoot alot of pics for Ebay auctions (my own) and they are terrible H-E-L-P !!
Thank You!
Robin Carter

11/16/2002 5:39:07 PM

Dustin L. Gzym

member since: 11/20/2002
  Two possible ways to fix this Robin:

Is it a simple camera setting that is doing this ?? On my particular digital there are white balance settings for indoor, outdoor, or automatic. If it's a problem fixable with the camera itself, I'd say look to your settings, whatever that particular camera gives control over.

If not, you can repair an image pretty easily for your purposes. Does your editing software have any tint or hue control ?? If so, steer away from a red tint towards a blue or green one, until you can get any whites white again. If not, I SHOULD.. I usually recommend Microsoft's Picture It photo for anyone wanting maximum control without learning PhotoShop.

12/5/2002 10:43:34 AM

Robin A. 

member since: 11/16/2002
  Thank You! I'll see if that helps.By the way this is a great site!!
Robin

12/5/2002 11:26:26 PM

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Photography Question 
Lindsay K. Revere

member since: 10/28/2002
  13 .  Resolution Problems
 
  dresser
dresser
grainy
© Lindsay K. Revere
 
  Group Shot
Group Shot
This is better, but subjects were pretty close to the camera
© Lindsay K. Revere
 
Hi,
I am having problems getting good resolution with my digital camera. If I am more than two feet away from my subject, the image is grainy. When I do portraits and get up close to my models, the pictures are fine. The colors in the dresser shot are about 95% correct. I refinished my dresser and wanted to email it. Anyway, resolution 2160x1440, F8.0, 1/250, Flash used. Sony DSC-S85. Even if I slow down the shutter to let more light in, the image did does not have much detail. I want to do more work with full body shots and they always come out bad. The group shot has a lot of orange tones. Tarra Cotta walls are to blame for that. Specs on this shot: same resolution, F2.1, 1/25, Flash used. My blacks are not solid in color either. Do I need more light, or should I adjust the settings on my camera? Even when I increase the focus distance it does not seem to help. Please help, thanks!

11/4/2002 9:33:57 PM

doug Nelson
DougNelsonPhoto.com

member since: 6/14/2001
  What this sounds like is a troublesome feature called digital zoom. Turn it off and use only the optical zoom feature. Also, always shoot at the highest quality setting your camera can do, even if it means buying a larger memory card. That way, you have the option of printing, archiving to CD or reducing (if you're SURE you only want it to send or put on a web page). Shooting at less than the best quality reduces your options. BTW, these are only guesses on my part.

11/5/2002 10:27:11 AM

Lindsay K. Revere

member since: 10/28/2002
  Thanks Doug,
But I did not zoom with either of these shots, and the resolution is set to the highest, 4.1 MP camera. This is not the problem. Anything else you can suggest?
Thank you,

11/5/2002 3:20:49 PM

doug Nelson
DougNelsonPhoto.com

member since: 6/14/2001
  Some digital cameras have an ASA setting, to simulate different speeds of film. Could it be set too high? If so, try 100.

11/6/2002 8:38:33 AM

Wanda Harris Black

member since: 5/15/2003
 
 
  Almost 8 months pregnant
Almost 8 months pregnant
Wanda Black,4pm,Salisbury,NC
 
 
My images are also very grainy. I have Microsoft Picture It, but how would I use it to get the grainy look out? My camera has a "Fine" and "Normal" Camera setting.It has auto focus, and you can focus yourself, and control the shutter speed. When I have been taking pictures, I have been using the "normal",auto focus,and normal shutter speed. As you can tell I'm very new, but I want to learn desperatly learn. Wanda

6/23/2003 5:31:24 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member
gregorylagrange.org

member since: 11/11/2003
  Use the fine setting. The bigger the file for an image, the sharper it comes out for a given film speed. Such as if your film speed is 100 and everything is exposed correctly, the fine setting should give a better image, but will take up more room on your card. Like on my camera, if I go from Large fine to a Large normal setting, I can get over twice as many shots on a card, but the large fine setting is what's better for blowing pictures up.

11/16/2003 1:31:32 AM

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Photography Question 
James Wolosin

member since: 10/9/2002
  14 .  Worsening photo quality with image editing
I shoot in 35 mm format with a canon slr but have been scanning my negatives with a canoscan fs2720u scanner. I am very happy with the scanner but the more that I edit the images with photoshop LE, the grainier and less sharp the images become. Also, I am not entirely happy with prints from my HP970cse even at the 5x7 range. They are OK but just don't seem to have the quality that I am used to from standard photo processing even though I scan and print at very high resolutions. What am I doing wrong or is this what I should expect??

10/9/2002 1:38:24 AM

Jeff Galbraith
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 8/20/2001
  Hi James,
I can't comment on the quality of prints you are getting from your printer, as I have no experience with the printer that you are using. However, the image quality loss that you are experiencing may be a result of editing compressed image files (JPEG.) If this is the case, try saving your original scan as a TIF (which is a non- compressed image format) then do your image editing. The non-compressed image files suffer very little, if any, quality loss compared to compressed files during editing. Hope this helps.

10/9/2002 5:11:20 AM

James Wolosin

member since: 10/9/2002
  Thanks for the response. I am saving the files as either .psd (photoshop) or .bmp not jpeg.

JW

10/9/2002 11:33:37 PM

doug Nelson
DougNelsonPhoto.com

member since: 6/14/2001
  Jeff's response was the first thing I thought of, too. If, in Image/Image Size,you have a resolution of at least 240 ppi when you scale the image to 5 x 7, you're OK there.
Recently in my learning curve, I found that I was over-manipulating some images. I wonder if certain Photoshop operations are more destructive than we think.
To minimize image degredation, scan at a high resolution and also at the highest color bit depth you can. Do your tonal corrections (Levels OR Curves, not both)BEFORE changing in Image Mode to the 8-bit mode. Look at your histogram after you have the tones the way you want them. If there are no gaps showing no information in those places, then you've done it right. If you see a snaggle-tooth effect, you've over-manipulated the image and degraded it.
I've over-used such tools as the rubber stamp and Dust and Scratches to the point of ruining an image.
Look at Wayne's comments on sharpening at scantips.com. He will tell you how to pull this off without ruining image quality.

10/10/2002 8:49:43 AM

Piper Lehman
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/20/2001
  I wonder if you are printing from your raw image or after compressing. I learned the hard way that printing a compressed image is a waste of time. I'm sure there are others out there who know how to do this correctly, but I've never been able to get a good print from a compressed image no matter how large the image or small the print size. Doug, is it an actual file compression when printing, say, a 5x7 print size from a big file? If I print from the original scanned size, I get a better-looking image than if I squash it down to size in PS. Does this make any sense?

10/10/2002 2:45:24 PM

doug Nelson
DougNelsonPhoto.com

member since: 6/14/2001
  If you use the Image/Image Size screen and keep Resample unchecked, reducing the image dimensions should not give you a worse print. The total pixels will be squashed into a smaller space, which should give you a better print. After doing that, you might even bump up the dpi final print setting in your printer driver to deliver an even better print.
Don't do any compression at all, JPEG or LZW (for TIF) until you get ready to either post the image on the web or save it to some storage medium where space matters. CD's are so cheap, it's best to archive your images as full size TIF's or as PSD's, if you want to preserve layers.

10/10/2002 2:55:42 PM

Piper Lehman
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 7/20/2001
  Doug, I think this is essentially what I am doing, only in a different way. After I scan the image, I'm not saving it or anything before I print. When I go to print preview, I manipulate the dimensions using only the inches-by-inches tool in the preview box. The pixel size stays the same, as does the file size since I'm not changing the actual file in any way. As long as the file is around 300ppi to start with, I'm okay for 5x7's, right? I really hate this. Makes my head hurt...

10/10/2002 3:01:46 PM

James Wolosin

member since: 10/9/2002
  Thanks for all the input. I have been trying to keep it simple and have not been using the histograms. Rather I have been using the color adjust tools as well as brightness and sharpening tools. I think that the latter may be causing some of the problems.

10/11/2002 12:43:08 AM

Abigail Klinton

member since: 9/11/2013
  Hi there
I have never tried to edit an image .But I am planning to get a powerful image program which supports to edit image directily.I have got a free trial package from this image program;
http://www.rasteredge.com/how-to/csharp-imaging/
It is amazing.But it is expensive.Is there any cheap one?Thanks a lot.

12/8/2013 11:08:34 PM

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Photography Question 
Nicole C. West

member since: 10/1/2002
  15 .  Seeing Every Pixel in My Prints
I am totally frustrated and am in need of someone's knowledge, expertise, and help! I have been taking pictures with my digital camera, but when I print them you can see the pixels.

I have tried purchasing a new printer (HP 5550), uninstalling and reinstalling all my programs (MGI Photosuite, Photoshop 6, Photoshop Elements 2.0, HP printing software, and my camera software). I also tried to download new drivers for my camera, but was told mine were current. I am only trying to print 4X6's and 5X7's. One thing I have noticed is that when I open an image in Photoshop it says my resolution is 72ppi. I have tried changing this to 360 once the image is open, but it doesn't do anything on my printed version. Do you know a way to change this in the settings before an image is opened? Do you know what else could be causing my problem?

Oh yeah, my camera is a Sony Cybershot DSC-P30. Only 1.3 megapixels, but that should still be enough to get an okay 4X6 or 5X7 (at least that is what I was led to believe). Any help, advice, etc. would be greatly appreciated!!! Oh yeah, the pictures still look fine on line, just not when printed.

10/1/2002 2:26:40 AM

doug Nelson
DougNelsonPhoto.com

member since: 6/14/2001
  You're lucky you have Photoshop 6.0. Open an image that is the highest quality your camera can produce, and go to Image/Image Size. The resolution will read 72, but the dimensions will be monstrous. Uncheck the Resample box. Check Constrain Proportions. If it's a 5 x 7 you want, enter 7 inches in the box for the long dimension. The other dimension will scale itself proportionally. You will see the resolution jump up, because Photoshop is squeezing the same total number of pixels into a smaller (printable) space. Hit OK. The image will not go smaller, because your file size is the same. Print that and see what happens.

If the print is disappointing, go back into Image, Image Size, keep the check settings as before, and change only the resolution block to the minimum resolution your printer manufacturer tells you will give you a decent print. For many printers, it's 240 pixels per inch. Your dimensions will automatically drop to the best size you will get for that resolution.

10/2/2002 1:29:52 PM

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Photography Question 
Diane C

member since: 8/16/2002
  16 .  Shooting gold jewelry
 
  Gold ring
Gold ring
© Diane C
 
I have been trying to shoot gold jewelry on a white background using my digital camera. I can never get the background to look white. If I shoot silver jewelry the background is white. I'm using a light tent with a photoflood on either side, Olympus 3020 zoom with macro lens. Any ideas.

8/16/2002 4:11:59 PM

John A. Lind
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 9/27/2001
  Diane,
It looks as if the background is picking up the color cast of the yellow gold as it reflects light from your photofloods onto the background. Any time an object with a non-neutral color (other than white or true gray) reflects light, the reflected light will pick up the color of the object, and if that light falls on something else nearby it will shift its color. How much depends on many factors. It's more noticeable here because the background you are using is white.

-- John

8/25/2002 12:58:32 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member
gregorylagrange.org

member since: 11/11/2003
  Are you using auto exposure. The gray look to the white looks like slightly underexposure. Or could be using auto white balance, so the gold from the ring could be throwing it off.

11/16/2003 1:43:50 AM

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Photography Question 
Greg 

member since: 7/23/2002
  17 .  Digital images
Why does the subject look placed (using Photoshop) onto the background on my 8x10's? Is this normal?

7/23/2002 11:07:56 PM

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Photography Question 
Nicolas Melendez

member since: 7/22/2002
  18 .  I cant open the files from my SmartMedia Card
What could I be doing to corrupt the images on my Smart Media card? I try to work with the images in Photoshop 5.0, Photoshop 6.0, Corel, and others and the images will not open. The message that the file is corrupted and unreadable is displayed. What should I do, these are really important photographs. I appreciate all your help.
Nicolas Melendez
M&N Photo Image
Professional Wedding Photographer
jul/22/2002 5:19 pm

7/22/2002 5:16:00 PM

Lem Metro

member since: 8/15/2002
  You probably have a bad memory card. I have two platforms that use Smartmedia and 6 total memory cards. I have one 32MB card that will not work with either camera. The card is bad!

8/16/2002 2:59:47 PM

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Photography Question 
Todd Allen

member since: 5/25/2002
  19 .  How Do I Eliminate Digital Distortion?
 
  Mason's Bath Time
Mason's Bath Time
Background distortion, ex. 1
© Todd Allen
 
  Activity Table
Activity Table
Background distortion, ex. 2
© Todd Allen
 
I have a Sony DSC-S75 (3.3 Mega Pixel) camera. I love the images I take but in many of my photos the background is distorted. It only seems to happen with light colors (beige, light yellow, off white, gray). It's sort of like a digitized "blur." It even happens sometimes on skin tones if it's a close up. If I have dark or sharp colors in the background (reds, blues, dark green etc.) it's not an issue at all.

This is very frustrating especially to my wife who can't understand why I spent all the money I did to get a digital camera in the first place.

Is this an issue of my settings? Lighting? Digital cameras in general?

I love the possibilities a digital camera provides but it's not a long term direction if I can't get this issue resolved.

Thanks for your help.

Here are some examples of my photos with this problem.

5/26/2002 12:39:06 AM

Vicky Steven

member since: 6/10/2002
  Your problem could be solved by applying a simple colour management system. If I could invite you to visit our website, www.lmal.co.uk we could help you improve your picture quality through calibrating your monitor, scanner and printer. This will then allow you to be confident that the image you see on your monitor will be the same as what is printed.

6/10/2002 9:00:39 AM

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Photography Question 
Harry L. Santos

member since: 5/10/2002
  20 .  How to get good quality digital pics?
Even at the highest resolution possible in my camera (Sony DSC-P20 1.3MP) I still get blurry images, for example when trying to take a portrait shot.

5/10/2002 6:59:00 PM

Jeff S. Kennedy

member since: 3/4/2002
  Are you using a tripod? There are just some things that are true in photography whether you are using digital or film. If you want sharp pictures then use a tripod.

5/13/2002 12:18:30 PM

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