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Photography Question 
Munzoor E. Shaikh

What Causes Grainy Pics?

A very basic question: I took several pictures of a fountain on a cloudy day with a 70-300 zoom and Kodak 400 film. The shorter my shutter speed was, the grainier the picture. Is that because there was too little light? Should I have used a much larger F value to compensate? In general, what causes grain, and how can I try to avoid grain? Thanks.

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5/17/2004 7:52:17 AM

Kevin M. Krawczuk   When using a longer lens, and higher ISO film, it will create grain. When shooting on cloudy days with moisture in the air, you multiply the problem. I would try using a 100 ISO film, and try moving closer to the subject so as not to use the 300mm. You should notice a big improvement.

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5/17/2004 10:10:15 AM

Munzoor E. Shaikh   Kevin, thanks, I thought along the same lines and got ISO 200 but didn't try going physically closer to the subject. Will try it soon. Although on a sunny day I should probably be fine since so much light is already present, right?


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5/17/2004 1:25:50 PM

Mathieu G. Cool   Another thing that might cause that is actually where you get your pictures developed. If it's underexposed they have it grainy instead of realy dark. Maybe you should ask where you got them done - they might be able to give you insight.

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5/19/2004 5:27:19 PM

BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/28/2002
  When you shorter the exposure time, you have to open up the aperture to compensate. Otherwise, you keep underexposing the negative. For example: 1/125 sec. at f8, 1/60 sec. at f5.6 and 1/30 sec. at f4 will give you the same exposure (although it has a different effect on the image).

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5/19/2004 6:31:56 PM

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