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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone have one? Its supposed to be a decent camera but darn if I can get it set to take decent pics. Will someone please post or PM me, the best settings. TIA!!!!!
 

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Nicole, I sent a email to Fishdaddy, he's an admin in absentia, asking him if he could pop in and help. He has a couple Olympus and is an accomplished photographer.
What kind of probs are you having?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks, Doug. I just cant seem to get a shot that looks like it does in life. Either the coloring and/or the lighting are not right. Shutter speed, you name it....I need help. The manual assumes you already know a lot and then goes from there. I need a 1.2.3. step direction. I see great photos on here and think I should be able to do the same.
 

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are we talking film or digital camera? I shoot Minolta XD-11 (old man focus) for film but I have a Kodak digicam, bout the only options on it are reg/macro setting and flash off/on/fill, but it does OK
Basically if you are shooting film, it will always have a wierd color cast because of the way film reacts to artificial light, flash can help but you have to avoid the hot spot on the glass. I try to get the lense right up to the glass, turning off pumps and stuff will help with the blurries. But basically shoot at the fastest shutter speed you can with a medium aperture setting.
I know its not much but its a start.
 

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Hi Nicole,

Doug gives me too much credit for photography, but I'll take a stab at trying to help.

I've got an Olympus C-3000, among others, and the 3000 is similar but yours has more features. There are many variables, depending on your settings and what you are trying to shoot, but generally, I try to shoot either in (A)Aperture or (S)Shutter Priority. (P) Program is essentially the auto setting and should give you pretty good results at the default settings in most conditions so long as you have enough light.

Because the C-Series have most of the options within hidden menues, some of your settings could be off.

A good starting point would be to make sure you have these settings:

Use Center Weighted Metering. You should have 3 options displayed on the LCD, being a rectangle with a dot in it (Spot); plain rectangle (Normal or Matrix metering), and a rectangle with a dark area and a larger dot (Center Weighted). Make sure the little flower isn't selected unless you are trying to take an extreme closeup.

Half-press the shutter to lock in the focus and exposure of your main subject. I can't remember if the 3040 has external Automatic Exposure Lock (there will be an AEL) button on the camera if it does). If so, then aiming the camera at the part of the subject that matters most to you and pressing the AEL button will lock the exposure.

All Reset: Off (otherwise the camera will reset to the default settings each time you turn it off)

White Balance: Cloudy Even on bright days, this seems to give good results.

ISO: 100 Higher ISO settings can help in very low light but can result in grainy pictures.

Quality: SHQ You can use HQ but SHQ will give you more pixels to work with, especially for printing or cropping smaller sections of the picture. Of course, SHQ will give you roughly half the number of pictures available on your card.

Sharpening: Normal

Contrast: Normal

EV: 0 On a very bright day, you might try -0.3 or -0.7. This essentially darkens the image.

Digital Zoom: Off. Digital zoom is a gimmick and should not be used. You can do the same thing with a computer program which just enlarges the image, though quality may suffer.

For flash, the onboard flash isn't very effective beyond 7-10 feet indoors.

What settings are you using and what type photos are you trying to take?

For an overview that explains the settings and controls, this very good free online "Short Course" might help to point you in the right directions:

http://www.shortcourses.com/guides/olympus/c3040guide.htm

Just a few tips on technique:

Shutter Lag: Digitals do have a momentary lag between the time you press the shutter and when the camera actually takes the picture. You have to anticipate this and hold the camera steady after you press the shutter button. You also have to anticipate the shot if a target is moving. Be sure to always half press the shutter button momentarily before pressing the button all the way down. This allows the camera's computer to read the exposure and lock in the focus before the shot.

Make sure you have enough shutter speed according to the settings you have selected. It is difficult to hold most digitals for sharp photos below 1/60th sec. Faster is better but in lower light conditions, may not be possible. A tripod is a big help if shooting lower shutter speeds.

These are the things I can think of off the top of my head. I will be glad to attempt answer any questions. I'm just a novice myself and certainly no expert, but I've spent quite a bit of time trying to learn.

HTH,
Dick:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks, Dick, for taking time for me. Some of this stuff is just going WAY over my head! I am printing off the short course you recommended....all 20 pgs.!!!! I guess my biggest complaint is not getting the colors right. Example: my blue damsel should NOT be pink in the pic. Let me take a look over this stuff and I'll get back with you with specific questions.
Thanks again!!!!
 

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Hmmmmmm Pink Damsels, if they are supposed to be blue, I would say thats serious error, all Damnsels should be black as hades ;)
If the lesson doesn't tell you what you want to know, there are usually online Forums like this but geared to a specif camera brand, I have popped in on the Kodak board a time or 2 :)
Hopefully you will figure out the bugs and begin to enjoy the camera.
I got my no frills digi so I could take tank shots, it does OK but if I had spent $8- more and got the 3600 model I would have gotten 3x optical zoom, mines only digital and like Dick said its a waste of memory.
Anyway I digress, my cam has 8 megs of memory so it will take 49 pics in good quality(as opposed to hi-resolution) with the 32 meg card its 198 and I have a 64 I got cheap, mine uses COmpact Flash cards.
ANYWAY, it was my grandsons 11th BDay yesterday and I let someone use the cam to take pics since I can't get around well yet. I had the cam set for point and shoot, and she comes back and says "is there film in here, I have shot about 3 dozen pics and its not rewound yet;)
I put cam on review and showed her what she had taken, and xplained , No Brandi, you can take about 110 more pics before the card is full and I have a backup.
Right after the party she was heading to WalMArt to look at digicams :D
 

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Nicole,
The color problems sound like White Balance issues....at least that's the first place to check.

You might try some test shots, using identical settings except for White Balance and go through the internal menu, trying each WB setting and then compare results. Aquarium lighting can cause some unusual results if the WB setting isn't compatible with the particular type lights.

HTH,
Dick:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sheeeeeeze!

Im on page 17 now of the short course. Im making progress but then the batteries die and i have to recharge them.
(A)Aperture
What is this? What does it mean?
And this?
ISO: 100 Higher ISO settings
?????????
Sammy- Your photos are the ones that inspired me to figure out how to use this camera. We've had it for 2 years maybe, I think we got it second hand from a guy my husband works with. Dunno. But I know I didnt go out and buy it because it had so many options. I like plain and simple. We have an answering machine that uses the automated voice(havent read that book either), have a cell phone for emergencies that A. I dont know the number to and B. Cant figure out how to check messages. All these things take time to sit and read and play with. Well, if Im online talking to you guys then Im not reading the instructions. All these high tech gadgets that are supposed to make life easier just seem to complicate things. God, I sound old! I sound like my parents. Mid 30's and my 14yo knows more about this stuff than I do. Sammy, I'll need you to help me if you can. Thanks!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Fishdaddy- I am so grateful for your advice. I will work on the white balance as you suggest. I just want to take a clear,sharp,vivid image....like the ones pros get with a 35mm. Is it possible?
 

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Hi Nicole,

Definitely possible to take high quality images with your camera....just takes some fiddlin' and experimenting!

For sharpness, it is critical that the camera be held as still as possible, preferably with a tripod. If you don't have one, you can use something solid as a support to rest the camera on.

Here's an excellent glossary of digital photography terms:
http://www.dpreview.com/learn/glossary/

I didn't see ISO in there but thats a standard, carried over from film, by which different films are rated for susceptibility to light. The higher the ISO, theoretically the less light required to expose the image. There is a trade off in that higher ISO settings, particularly in most digital cameras, produce 'noisy' or grainy pictures. I prefer to use the lowest ISO numbers with my cameras to keep the grain to a minimum and just manipulate the other settings or uses flash to compensate for low light.

Another factor that comes into play in aquarium photography is the refraction of light caused by the glass. Shooting perpendicular to the glass minimizes this effect. It's not so much a problem in acrylic tanks but still can affect the sharpness. Again, experimentation with your tank and lighting will give you the best angle to shoot.

Another factor is reflected light onto the glass from room lights or windows. You will see those reflections in your viewfinder so watch out for that!

Have fun!

Dick:)
 

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Re: Sheeeeeeze!

9fishers said:
Sammy- Your photos are the ones that inspired me to figure out how to use this camera. Sammy, I'll need you to help me if you can. Thanks!!!!
Thanks for the kind compliment! I will definately help. I will send you a complete rundown of the settings I use. Will send soon. :)
 
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