How do I know if it is a bad lens or just user error?

Two Peas is Closing
Click here to visit our final product sale. Click here to visit our FAQ page regarding the closing of Two Peas.

Posted 3/4/2013 by Jen in NCal in General Photography
 

Jen in NCal
PeaFixture

PeaNut 175,686
November 2004
Posts: 3,471
Layouts: 4
Loc: Counting the days until I return to Kim's Perfect BB World.

Posted: 3/4/2013 2:55:19 PM
I decided I really needed to make an effort to learn my Tamron 70-300 lens. For the life of me, I cannot get it to focus. The pictures are always blurry. Often to the point that I can't even find what the camera did focus on. Everything is fuzzy.

I completely own the fact that I am not a great photographer and still have lots and lots to learn. But should it be this hard to learn the focusing capabilities of a lens? I've taken hundreds of pictures on it in different situations and I've only had a few that I am happy with.


****************************
Canon T1i
Canon 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro - Love this lens!!
Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 - Hate this lens!!!

Check out my Tanzania pics!

paintedmoon
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 150,843
June 2004
Posts: 7,819
Layouts: 213
Loc: Texas

Posted: 3/4/2013 3:27:34 PM
The best way for anyone to help you is for you to post some photos along with your settings. Many people are so quick to make the assumption it's a bad lens when it is more often than not user issues. And I'm guessing that is a fairly heavy lens, so your settings and how you shoot could really make a huge difference in how sharp your photos are.

Anne

paintedmoon
Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 150,843
June 2004
Posts: 7,819
Layouts: 213
Loc: Texas

Posted: 3/4/2013 3:27:36 PM
The best way for anyone to help you is for you to post some photos along with your settings. Many people are so quick to make the assumption it's a bad lens when it is more often than not user issues. And I'm guessing that is a fairly heavy lens, so your settings and how you shoot could really make a huge difference in how sharp your photos are.

Anne

Jen in NCal
PeaFixture

PeaNut 175,686
November 2004
Posts: 3,471
Layouts: 4
Loc: Counting the days until I return to Kim's Perfect BB World.

Posted: 3/4/2013 3:31:11 PM
And I see the board hiccup got you too.

Thanks. I'll do that when I get home. The lens is actually lighter than my walk-around and my macro, but I do have hand tremors.

And I'm sure it's me. That's why I wanted to take some serious time to work with it. It's not coming off my camera until I've mastered it. Unless some really neat macro opportunity comes along, then all bets are off.


****************************
Canon T1i
Canon 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro - Love this lens!!
Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 - Hate this lens!!!

Check out my Tanzania pics!

coolbeans
PeaFixture

PeaNut 341,583
October 2007
Posts: 3,185
Layouts: 84
Loc: Erie, PA

Posted: 3/4/2013 3:50:34 PM
Try shooting a still life or an object that is not moving with your camera on a tri pod. Focus on a key spot where you really want clear. This should give you a very clear image. If it does not then post your images and settings for the shot.

Look at some of the exif info from your shots that are blurry. Check out what the shutter and aperture were and see if you can find where you focused. Chances are your shutter may not have been fast enough to hand hold with a slight tremor.


Canon 7D and XTi
Jackie S.

coolbeans
PeaFixture

PeaNut 341,583
October 2007
Posts: 3,185
Layouts: 84
Loc: Erie, PA

Posted: 3/4/2013 3:50:35 PM
Try shooting a still life or an object that is not moving with your camera on a tri pod. Focus on a key spot where you really want clear. This should give you a very clear image. If it does not then post your images and settings for the shot.

Look at some of the exif info from your shots that are blurry. Check out what the shutter and aperture were and see if you can find where you focused. Chances are your shutter may not have been fast enough to hand hold with a slight tremor.


Canon 7D and XTi
Jackie S.

voltagain
OklaPhoma

PeaNut 18,334
July 2001
Posts: 38,143
Layouts: 15
Loc: State of cultural confusion. Yeehaw and Aloha have collided!

Posted: 3/4/2013 8:30:49 PM
This is a lens with relatively small aperture even when wide open. It is only going to perform well in BRIGHT sunlight. Anything less than full sun requires a slower shutter that will give you blurry images if you have the least amount of movement.

When you were a kid did you ever play "crack the whip" where you held hands with friends and tried to run? But the people at the back of the line experienced an exaggerated movement to the motions the kids at the front of line didn't experience? The same principles apply to your lens. A tiny amount of movement where you are holding the camera becomes much more pronounced at the end of the len's zoom.

To counter small amounts of camera shake the shutter speed needs to be twice the speed of the focal length. At 70mm your minimum ss needs to be f/140. At 300mm your minimum speed needs to be f/600. If you can't achieve those speeds in your lighting conditions you will need a tripod. If your hand shake even a bit more pronounced you may need to go with a tripod even at those shutter speeds.


What Your Kit Lens Can Do For You

Canon 60d, Canon 24-70mm 2.8L, Canon 70-200mm 2.8L, 50mm 1.8, 28-80, 75-300mm and Tamron 90mm 2.8 macro

cindylou62
PeaAddict

PeaNut 251,766
March 2006
Posts: 1,735
Layouts: 191
Loc: minnesota-brrrrrr

Posted: 3/5/2013 10:48:13 AM
Volt gives great advice! She should write a book, her answers fit the questions and at the level the person asking understands.

This forum is sooo lucky!

Jen in NCal
PeaFixture

PeaNut 175,686
November 2004
Posts: 3,471
Layouts: 4
Loc: Counting the days until I return to Kim's Perfect BB World.

Posted: 3/5/2013 12:12:01 PM

Volt gives great advice! She should write a book, her answers fit the questions and at the level the person asking understands.

This forum is sooo lucky!
Volt always gives good advice. And most of it I actually understand. Coolbeans gave good advice too.

I'll try to take some pictures this afternoon, but it's supposed to rain.


Volt, with your advice, this should be a good lens in Africa shooting in the midday sun, yes? Beanbags will be my friend for stability.


****************************
Canon T1i
Canon 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro - Love this lens!!
Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 - Hate this lens!!!

Check out my Tanzania pics!

voltagain
OklaPhoma

PeaNut 18,334
July 2001
Posts: 38,143
Layouts: 15
Loc: State of cultural confusion. Yeehaw and Aloha have collided!

Posted: 3/5/2013 2:48:55 PM
Volt, with your advice, this should be a good lens in Africa shooting in the midday sun, yes? >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Yes, as long as you don't have a true lemon lens, it will be great for midday Africa. Not sure what conditions you'll be shooting under (in a jeep? on an Elephant? ) but you might consider a monopod. They don't take up the room of a tripod but offer a good bit of stability and I think it would be more easily transported than a bean bag but I might be wrong.


What Your Kit Lens Can Do For You

Canon 60d, Canon 24-70mm 2.8L, Canon 70-200mm 2.8L, 50mm 1.8, 28-80, 75-300mm and Tamron 90mm 2.8 macro

dwisker
Squillen's Best Bud

PeaNut 297,159
February 2007
Posts: 7,055
Layouts: 20
Loc: Montrose, NY

Posted: 3/8/2013 3:52:08 PM
If you are shooting in Africa during the mid day then you should have a polarizing filter. It makes a world of difference, especially if you are going during their winter/dry season when everything is washed out and dry.

I used the Tamron 28-300mm lens and rented a Canon 100-400mm L series. We had the luxury of bean bags or foam on the rails of the Land Rovers to steady the cameras, so we did not need tri or monopods.


Deb Wisker

My Blog



Canon 60D
Canon 50D
Canon Rebel XT (retired)
Canon 24-105mm f/4L
Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 VC
Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3VC
Canon 50mm f/1.8
Canon 85mm f/1.8
Canon Speedlite 580 EX
Lightroom 5
PSE 11

verohdzg
PeaNut

PeaNut 327,356
July 2007
Posts: 233
Layouts: 71
Loc: Mexico

Posted: 3/10/2013 5:54:54 PM
I'm so glad I read you guys because I have to admit I've given up on my Tamron 70-300 because of the same problem,
Still I've found that it doesn't do very well with the autofocus of my camera, I have to set it on manual, which is ok for still photos but no so great on on other situations is there some settings I should consider?


Veronica

voltagain
OklaPhoma

PeaNut 18,334
July 2001
Posts: 38,143
Layouts: 15
Loc: State of cultural confusion. Yeehaw and Aloha have collided!

Posted: 3/10/2013 9:37:56 PM
Still I've found that it doesn't do very well with the autofocus of my camera, I have to set it on manual, which is ok for still photos but no so great on on other situations is there some settings I should consider?
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

From reading the reviews the focus on this particular lens is a recurring complaint it is slow to focus. If your's is doing well for stills but not for movement then I'd say the issue is the slow focusing and that seems to be inherent to the technology of this lens.


What Your Kit Lens Can Do For You

Canon 60d, Canon 24-70mm 2.8L, Canon 70-200mm 2.8L, 50mm 1.8, 28-80, 75-300mm and Tamron 90mm 2.8 macro
Show/Hide Icons . Show/Hide Signatures
Hide
{{ title }}
{{ icon }}
{{ body }}
{{ footer }}