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  1. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #1  
    Does anyone else have this problem? Every single time I try to take a night photo of the landscape, it always ends up blur no matter how hard I try to keep my hands still.

    The only time I've been able to capture a clear night shot was when I propped my hand against a wall for stabilization. However every attempt take photos free hand all ended up blur. IMO it kinda defeats the purpose of having a camera that can take photos in the night if every photo which I take free-hand ends up looking blur like crap.

    (and yes, I do know how to focus)


    EDIT: Hey all just an update: I played around with the phone a bit and realized that the blurness only happens when I manually set the scene type to "Night". When it's set to auto, the picture still remains pretty clear. However when it's set to "Night" I need to be absolutely steady. If anyone has the time, could you test this out and tell me if you experience anything similar?
    Last edited by aelesiaa; 12-12-2012 at 01:10 PM.
  2. n3rfh3rd3r's Avatar
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    #2  
    Last night was my son's Christmas Musical so I was there with my wife and our other child to watch. The teachers said that no flash photography or video capture was going to be allowed - you had to pay $12 for a DVD of the performances. I used my Lumia to snap a few photos but overall the quality wasn't that great but considering how poor the lighting was I think the camera did a fantastic job. I played with the shots in Creative Studio to bump up the sharpness some and it helped, but I know they could have been better if I was closer and had better lighting.

    I did have some blur to them, but that was partially due to the back of my phone not being clean. If I wiped down the lens before I took a photo the resulting shots would have faired a little better. I probably could have benefitted from changing the scene used and not relying on "auto/auto/auto" for everything.
  3. #3  
    you're not as steady as you think, its not the camera. its not a focus issue, you're shaking too much still while the shutter is open for a longer amount of time due to having to let more light in

    practice makes perfect ;)
  4. LazyLemming's Avatar
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    #4  
    You can manually set the ISO higher. This will allow the camera to capture a brighter picture while keeping the shutter open as short as possible. Unfortunately it also creates additional noise in the photo. Since our camera is still just a moderately better cell phone sensor, it still uses long shutter times to take bright pictures at night.
  5. dlusted's Avatar
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    #5  
    I would suggest tap to take pictures....
    I had the same issue when using the camera button on dark photos that pressing caused too much motion causing blur....

    Tap to take really helps!
  6. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #6  
    Hey all just an update: I played around with the phone a bit and realized that the blurness only happens when I manually set the scene type to "Night". When it's set to auto, the picture still remains pretty clear. However when it's set to "Night" I need to be absolutely steady.

    If anyone has the time, could you test this out and tell me if you experience anything similar?
  7. SoloXCRacer's Avatar
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    #7  
    This happens because "Night" mode increases your exposure time. When you have a longer exposure time, the shutter remains open for a longer period to allow more light in. When this happens, any movement from you or the subject will cause blur. The best night or low light photos I've taken were always taken in "Auto". It also seems to me that the "Night" mode probably works better for non-PureView cameras. I find better results if I just let the PureView work its magic when taking low light photos. In many cases, in low-light conditions, I generate better photos with the flash off than with the flash on. For low-light conditions like dim rooms (bars, restaurants, etc), I find keeping the flash off takes better pictures. The the darker it gets (closer to pitch black), the pictures look better with the Flash turned on.

    Below is an example in a dimly lit room:

    Flash Turned on (Scene: Auto)
    orbeaoccam29er_flashon.jpg


    Flash Turned Off (Scene: Auto)
    orbeaoccam29er_flashoff.jpg
  8. congusano's Avatar
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    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by LazyLemming View Post
    You can manually set the ISO higher. This will allow the camera to capture a brighter picture while keeping the shutter open as short as possible. Unfortunately it also creates additional noise in the photo. Since our camera is still just a moderately better cell phone sensor, it still uses long shutter times to take bright pictures at night.
    The sensor has nothing to do with the length of time it takes for night photos. The amount of light that is let in does, and that is a function of aperture, shutter speed, and ISO (sensitivity)
  9. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by SoloXCRacer View Post
    This happens because "Night" mode increases your exposure time. When you have a longer exposure time, the shutter remains open for a longer period to allow more light in. When this happens, any movement from you or the subject will cause blur. The best night or low light photos I've taken were always taken in "Auto". It also seems to me that the "Night" mode probably works better for non-PureView cameras. I find better results if I just let the PureView work its magic when taking low light photos. In many cases, in low-light conditions, I generate better photos with the flash off than with the flash on. For low-light conditions like dim rooms (bars, restaurants, etc), I find keeping the flash off takes better pictures. The the darker it gets (closer to pitch black), the pictures look better with the Flash turned on.

    Below is an example in a dimly lit room:]
    So far I've noticed that setting the scene to "Night" seems to produce better results and colours. May not be true for all situations, but in general it has in my experience. Here's a sample:

    Auto:


    Night:


    Flash, Auto: (Night looked almost similar but was slightly grainy)


    All photos were taken with almost no light btw. Here's a photo taken with my iPhone 4 just for comparisons sake on how dark it really was:



    Edit: Updated with Flash picture + iPhone 4 comparison shot. Apologies about the large and inconsistant sizes.
    Last edited by aelesiaa; 12-12-2012 at 02:38 PM.
  10. SoloXCRacer's Avatar
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    #10  
    Interesting! I also find that I can keep the phone more stable if I tap the screen to take a photo, as opposed to pressing the camera button.

    The Night mode tests I've done had been at racing events during the night. And when you try to get group shots, it's hard to get everyone to stand still. Though it can produce some cool looking artsy effects some times.
  11. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #11  
    Yup, using the button is fine in the day, but in the night I try using tap instead.

    I think if I'm trying to take a group photo, it's best to stick with auto and either lower the ISO or turn on flash if it's still blur. But if I'm trying to take a still night shot then I can afford to use "Night" mode for the best colours.
  12. MaulerX's Avatar
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    #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by aelesiaa View Post
    So far I've noticed that setting the scene to "Night" seems to produce better results and colours. May not be true for all situations, but in general it has in my experience. Here's a sample:

    Auto:
    http://i.imgur.com/f4GB1.jpg

    Night:

    http://i.imgur.com/3kzaD.jpg


    Both those photos were taken with almost no light btw. Pureview seems to work really well even in those situations. My iPhone 4 couldn't even pick up anything apart from darkness in that scene.

    Holy **** that second shot looks incredible!
  13. ttsoldier's Avatar
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    #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by MaulerX View Post
    Holy **** that second shot looks incredible!
    +1
  14. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #14  
    Another update: I tossed in another photo taken with Flash, and a 4th one taken with my iPhone 4 on post #9 just to show you guys how dark it really was.
  15. VisceralMonkey's Avatar
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    #15  
    So should we leave it on night for all pictures, including day? And just use screen tap?
  16. SoloXCRacer's Avatar
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    #16  
    No, you may get unintended side effects during the day.
  17. aelesiaa's Avatar
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       #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by Visceral Monkey View Post
    So should we leave it on night for all pictures, including day? And just use screen tap?
    I tried a few scenes, but it doesn't make that big a difference when the scene is well lit. So far from my limited testing this is what I've observed:

    - Steadiness required for low-lit scenes as the camera lens stays open longer, otherwise it'd be blur
    - Night tends to give the best colours and brightness (although it may vary from scene to scene), however it requires a really steady hand in low lit conditions otherwise it ends up blur. Probably not a good idea to take people with it as they will probably move around. Best suited for taking still scenes of the landscape.
    - Auto requires far less steadiness but still does a pretty good job. Best to use as an all-around setting.

    Conclusion: Use the Night setting for taking still pictures of the landscape, and auto for everything else.
  18. George Ponder's Avatar
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    #18  
    Try holding the camera in position for about a second after you press the shutter or tap the screen. I found at night moving the camera too early will cause blur. It's as if the sensor is still powered up recording the image even though the screen has refreshed and gone back live.
    George Ponder
    Reviews Editor - Windows Phone Central
    Email: george.ponder@wpcentral.com
    Twitter: @coppertop004

  19. tebugg's Avatar
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    #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by aelesiaa View Post
    All photos were taken with almost no light btw. Here's a photo taken with my iPhone 4 just for comparisons sake on how dark it really was:
    http://i.imgur.com/TLc6h.jpg

    dont mean to get off topic, but lol @ the iphone's camera shot.
  20. tebugg's Avatar
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    #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by George Ponder View Post
    Try holding the camera in position for about a second after you press the shutter or tap the screen. I found at night moving the camera too early will cause blur. It's as if the sensor is still powered up recording the image even though the screen has refreshed and gone back live.
    i noticed this also. it seems on screen the picture focuses then takes the pic but if you delay your movement a second or 2 after the pic got taken you get a better result.
  21. congusano's Avatar
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    #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by tebugg View Post
    i noticed this also. it seems on screen the picture focuses then takes the pic but if you delay your movement a second or 2 after the pic got taken you get a better result.
    don't forget though, that if it is dark enough, the phone could be taking a shot with an exposure time of a full second (or more), so after the shutter "clicks", it still needs to be held for a full second.

    I tried out a night shot, checked the EXIF and it showed a second long exposure time.

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