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-   -   Is this salvageable? (http://www.railpictures.net/forums/showthread.php?t=5342)

Wonka001 06-02-2007 04:52 AM

Is this salvageable?
Is this photo salvageable?
If anyone wants to see the photo in it's full glory, I can send it..

Also, one more question, is it just me, or is it my camera, it seems it's inconsitently producing slightly out of focus photos, I'm using a Nikon D100
with a nikkor 70-300 zoom for some of my pictures, and those are the ones that seem to give me the most trouble.. any ideas for a cure would be greatly appreciated.

bigbassloyd 06-02-2007 05:10 AM

1 Attachment(s)
I tinkered with contrast, sharpening, and saturation in irfanview and came up with pretty tasty looking results. the powerlines / poles hurt the shot a little IMO, and the sky appears just a tiny bit noisy, but they hit with your undersharpened, so Id sharpen a bit and try it again.

are you using a tripod for your night shots?

good luck!

Loyd L.

alexramos 06-02-2007 06:49 AM


Originally Posted by Wonka001
Is this photo salvageable?
Also, one more question, is it just me, or is it my camera

It's your lens.

Take Care,
Alex Ramos

Wonka001 06-02-2007 08:21 AM


It's your lens.

Maybe I'll take this one to work and tinker with it in Corel and see if I can sharpen it better.

alan-crotty 06-02-2007 08:33 AM

Focus testing
Good Morning Wonka,

Auto Focus is not infallible, especially in low light conditions.

Lenses do get out of calibration.

Users do make errors.

If you want to test the focus of you camera/lens combination try the test detailed on the link shown below:


The author suggests using the target at close range, that's fine, but also try the test from you "normal" taking distance, using, for instance, a railing fence or similar as the target, but keeping the 45 degree angle.

Don't forget to try at different apertures.

I'm sure the most likely cause of focus errors in low light is the inability of the AF system to function. Both the Canon and Nikon SLR AF systems are of the phase detection type, they need a change of contrast to 'bite' onto.

When I'm taking night shots I try to use a high contrast area to set the focus, sometimes that is not the subject, but an object at a similar distance from the camera. Then compose the picture without changing the focus or focal length.

I see you were working at f8 looks like about 20secs, I would have thought that would have been about the optimum aperture for your lens.

Using a smaller aperture will of course increase the depth of field which will help increase the in focus area, however this will lead to longer exposure times which may not suit you.

Checkout the depth of field for your lens:


I guess your using a tripod?

Looking at your shot the power lines appear sharp, yet the front of the locomotive and the rails ahead are not. This does point to back focusing error (the camera/lens is focusing behind the chosen point of focus.

Try the test at various focal lengths and apertures.

Let us know how you get on.

Best of luck :grin:


Joe the Photog 06-02-2007 03:33 PM

So to answer the question, I don't think this shot can be salvaged. It's not just undersharpened; it's out of focus. Night time shots are the hardest for me to put in focus and it seems they either work or they don't; there's no middle ground like daytime shots where you might can make a shot work in post.


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