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Disappointed with Canon 750d - what should I do?

Discussion in 'Beginner's Corner' started by Gregston, Nov 8, 2019.

  1. Gregston

    Gregston New Member

    First of all, this is my first post on this site. Not sure if the flickr links are the best way to show example photos?
    Anyway, a while ago I bought the 750D as my entry into the world of DSLR photography. I'm using it with the Sigma 18-300 lens which has had very good reviews (eg here: https://www.digitalcameraworld.com/buying-guides/best-superzoom-lenses-for-canon). While I'm quite happy with telephoto shots like this one https://flic.kr/p/2hFk2KB, I've been disappointed with the more wide angle, landscape photos. The one here for example https://flic.kr/p/2hFiSB7 isn't that sharp and there seems to be colour fringeing at the edges. This is even though the aperture wasn't that small, and the exposure was fast enough that camera shake shouldn't have been a problem (I think). This one I found on Flickr of a similar view seems much better in those areas: https://flic.kr/p/2bfJ498
    Now I realise that just buying a good camera isn't going to turn me into a good photographer, but I was hoping for more general detail, sharpness and contrast. What do you think might be the problem? Is it just that the lens is weak at that length - could it even be faulty? I have read other posts about the focus not being great on this camera. Do other photographers usually sharpen their images (these are untreated)? Should I think about moving up to a full frame camera? Or maybe they're basically OK - I just need to take better photos?!
    Thanks for any comments.
  2. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    In the picture with the leaves framing the landscape: the leaves look acceptably sharp to me so my guess is that's where your point of focus lies. In that case the background could simply be outside of the acceptable focus zone.

    When you say that "This is even though the aperture wasn't that small" do you mean that the aperture display gave a number greater than (say) 8 or that the hole in the blades was quite large? As the number gets bigger the hole gets smaller and the depth of field gets greater.

    To check your lens put it into manual focus and set it on infinity. Then take a shot similar to your example. If all is OK with that test, you may have your AF area set too wide so that closer objects to the side are being taken as the main point of interest and focussed on.
  3. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome. The picture you said wasn't sharp (lake view) doesn't look too bad to me. The focus is quite close in as shown by the fine detail in the plants against the water at the bottom of the frame toward the left. Superzooms are convenience lenses where you trade quality for flexibility so they are never going to be as sharp as a good prime lens or zoom.

    Edit: Andrew replied while I was composing.
  4. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    Hi, and welcome to the forum.

    My recommendation would be to avoid going down the rabbit-hole of chasing sharpness for its own sake - that's a mug's game. Pictures don't get 'better' simply because they're sharper. You'll risk spending a lot of money - on more and more equipment - and you'll always be left thinking there's something else you should buy. (Don't ask how I know this. ;))

    Your shot of the goose looks pretty good, so far as sharpness goes, and the lake is, IMO, perfectly acceptable. I'd suggest just getting out and using the perfectly good kit that you've already got, and make the most of it.
  5. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    Noticing f11 on one shot I would comment that this is probably at a point where diffraction is setting in, which will reduce definition. With regard to sharpening images it depends on the settings you use in camera, I would opine that sharpening in an image editing programme is probably preferable but is not vital.
  6. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    On sharpening: If you are saving images as jpegs then the camera will apply sharpening by default. With high pixel count cameras it isn't as critical to the end result as it used to be because edge detail is well resolved. It is generally damaging to an image to over-sharpen because this can introduce artefacts, particularly along high contrast edges.

    If saving raw files the processing software will also apply some default sharpening and with 24 MP this is usually enough. Sharpening will not recover missing detail.
  7. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member


    Your point of focus point appears to be in the centre of the image, did you focus and recompose?


    There is chromatic aberration in the top left, in the very high contrast areas. This is common, and is a behaviour of the lens, not the camera.


    It's trivial to remove if you use a RAW editor such as Lightroom, or some of the other options. Do you shoot RAW or is this shot as JPG from camera?

    All superzoom lenses are a compromise. Being the best superzoom doesn't mean the images are superb, it means they're the best in class, but superzooms (18-300 for example) are always likely to be less sharp and have more aberration than a similar priced lens with a shorter zoom range, or a prime.

    I don't think there's any fault with the camera or lens.

    The photo you link as a comparison has neither lens nor camera information, so it's impossible to compare.

    I suggest you take lots more photographs (and have fun doing it) and borrow differenet lenses and see how they behave.

    Also, don't pixel peep. Look at the image at the size you want the image to be and assess it at that level, don't look at it 1:1 and think 'oh it looks blurry'.
  8. daft_biker

    daft_biker Action Man!

  9. Gregston

    Gregston New Member

    Many thanks to everyone for your replies, very illuminating.
    Thanks for pointing out that I'd focused on the water in front of the distant trees. I can't remember if I'd recomposed, or if I'd read about not focusing on infinity in order to get maximum depth of field near and far. The focus information box in 8BitTony's post (how do you get that by the way?) suggests the subject distance as being between 2.39 and 2.95m but the red box is clearly showing a further distance. Maybe the reflection on the water is confusing things?
    As for the f number, when I said "even though the aperture wasn't that small" I was referring to the idea that if you stop a lens right down to try and get maximum dof you'll get diffraction problems.
    Interesting info about sharpening.
    Can I ask people if you were taking this shot of the lake and wanted everything to be in focus, roughly what aperture would you go for and where would you focus? (I was using single point focus by the way). Am I right in thinking camera shake shouldn't be an issue with this focal length (18mm) and shutter speed (1/125)?
    Thanks again.
  10. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    If you want to get (almost) everything in focus, you'll need to use the appropriate hyperfocal distance for the focal length/aperture combination being used.

    If you're not familiar with the term "Hyperfocal Distance" then I suggest reading up on it here. There's an alternative on-line calculator for it here, which you might find easier to use.
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019
  11. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    At 18mm the dof is quite great, my own preference is to use f5.6, most modern lenses will perform better than when stopped down further, in this scene it might not cut it, so I would probably try to take several at different apertures and focus points, generally you have more behind the focus point than in front. 1/125 and camera shake? It is surprising when shake can occur, less likely with a lens that has stabilisation, I will always increase the ISO setting to raise the shutter speed to try and prevent it, rather than take a chance, noise is much less of an issue with modern cameras and can be reduced afterwards, shake can be improved in editing, but is a basic fault and it's better to get it right initially.
  12. peterba

    peterba Well-Known Member

    You're right - it shouldn't be a problem... but that doesn't mean that it won't be. ;)
  13. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    The information shows that the centre AF point was used for focus aquisition. It doesn't necessarily mean that you focussed in the middle of the scene. Looking at the picture I'd say you focussed on the plants in front of view then, holding the shutter release, recomposed the shot. This is consistent with the ~2.5 m that Tony's information tool (I guess this is a third party EXIF analysis tool, I could not find that information in DPP after downloading your original file from Flickr) reports.

    For something like that I'd probably use F8 or F11 on a full-frame camera and focus 2/3 into the picture and let the foreground go soft. I can't offhand find an example.

    Camera shake depends much on you and practice. A common issue when you start using a camera, made worse using a zoom lens is "snatching" whereby you press the shutter release and at the same time as you drop the camera thinking the picture is done. Keep the camera to your eye for a moment after you take the shot. Otherwise "yes" a rule of thumb for someone with a steady hand would be use an exposure time no longer than 1/(1.6*focal length) where 1.6 is the Canon crop factor - so 1/30 s in this case.
  14. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    Shake: Don't forget, it's not just your hands which are moving. If there's a breeze, then the water and leaves are all moving.

    Data: I use a plugin for Lightroom called Show Focus Points - http://www.lightroomfocuspointsplugin.com/ - beware the focus distance number, it's notoriously unreliable.

    Practice: It's useful to ask other people what they would do, but I believe it's more useful to take your camera out and shoot the same thing with different settings. Keep the shutter speed the same but vary the aperture and see what effect it has. There's no cost any more (other than time) to shooting loads and loads of test shots. I read everything, I knew about depth of field but I still didn't realise just how narrow an aperture I needed to get a leaf in focus at the minimum focus distance on a 105mm lens until I kept trying it. Pick a view from your house, and shoot it at different focal lengths, different apertures, and different shutter speeds, and see how they behave.
    John Farrell likes this.
  15. Michael Smith

    Michael Smith Member

    Everyone is absolutely right over here and I can't think of anything else to add, honestly. Just know that there are no bad cameras or lenses out there. The EOS 750D is a perfectly good entry level camera and so is your lens. Just keep practicing, researching, and rinse and repeat. You will reach there in no time.
  16. Gregston

    Gregston New Member

    Thanks again for your comments. As you say I need to experiment more and get to know the equipment I have better.
  17. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    You say 'I bought the 750D as my entry into the world of DSLR photography', and looking at its specifications I would suggest you will need time and patience to get the best from it. I suspect that many modern digital camera bodies are over complex for many users, which makes the learning process longer. After using DSLRs for about 12 years (and film SLRs for 35 years before that), I find that I now use only a small fraction of the facilities on my DSLR because experience has helped me to know how many features I don't need.

    Initially I would concentrate on focussing and exposure, and refer to the user manual for some guidance in how the various options for controlling how these work. If you got the camera and lens secondhand without the manual, it can be downloaded from Canon's website :


    To be positive, at least learning will only cost you your time and patience. Older Forum members (like me) had to learn using film which cost money to buy and process.

    As explained above, the colour fringes are not your fault but a weakness of the lens/camera body digital sensor combination. I would not worry about them now (you can learn later about their removal if you want to get large prints), until you have mastered the focus and exposure settings.

    Have fun.
  18. Snorri

    Snorri Well-Known Member

    Having used its older sibling for years (600D) and with no intention or need to replace it, I would say your choice of body is good. The lens I would say is the week link but should not be to bad, I agree with what has been said and the only thing I would add is get familiar with the P, Tv and Av modes. Leave M for later I don’t use it except in studio environment using controlled light, and forget the rest of the modes they are useless IMHO.
    You are right the camera won’t make you a better photographer, but it helps and having the right tool for the job gives you a great place sto start from.
  19. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    I think the desire to get "everything" in focus is somewhat misplaced. You can get everything "acceptably sharp" but not everything can be in focus. May I suggest a book on photography to find a better explanation than I can give.
    EightBitTony likes this.

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