Photography forum: Canon support

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
May 16, 2015 12:40 PM CST
I recently bought a Canon PowerShot SX600 (fire engine red so I can find it easier when set down) and have been pretty happy with it. I did, however, find the paper manual to be minimal and the on-line manual to be not so handy (I'm often out in the field or out in our camper when I'm trying to figure something out and not near a computer). After mucking around a bit on my own, just scrolling through the menus etc., I called the tech support line with a couple of specific questions I was having trouble resolving. The wait time was very acceptable (less than 5 minutes), and the tech was very helpful. After working my way through most of my confusion in a clear way, he also offered me unsolicited tips and then encouraged me to call anytime with similar questions. I was very pleasantly surprised at this great customer service and thought I would pass it on here.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
St. Croix, USVI (Zone 10a)
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Orchidquiltfish
Jun 7, 2015 10:32 AM CST
I take lots of pictures with my phone but they are not as clear or detail as I would like them to be. I have been searching the internet looking for a great not so expensive camera that will be used most for taking pictures of flowers, plants, insects, nature and people. I will read up on the camera you purchased. Its always great when you get great tech support for an item purchased. Hope you enjoy your new camera.
Name: Peggy C
Graham NC USA (Zone 7b)
hand drumming with friends
Region: North Carolina Butterflies Irises Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Level 1
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PeggyC
Dec 19, 2015 10:39 AM CST
Have a Canon PowerShot SX60 HS that goes where I do .. even out to pick up the newspaper at the end of the driveway.
Do have a manual, PDF, downloaded - from that I have some 'cheat cards' tucked in the camera bag. Settings usually used for preferred subjects.
Although, discovered a couple of cameras back - if one takes a shot on each setting -- ONE is bound to turn out !
All my cameras have been Canon - starting with Canon PowerShot A80 [ 4mb ].. a photographer friend said "buy as many mb as you can afford". At that time, that was it!
Guess the rotating LCD is one of the best features - cause when I'm in the market for another Canon - if that isn't part of the package - I move on to another Canon.
Have had great customer service, too. With SX20 IS - walked me through the 'lens error' ... told him "you need a raise; whatever you are being paid isn't enough"... he thanked me as he laughed!
Thumb of 2015-12-19/PeggyC/550ea5
- taken with Canon PowerShot A80
Anna Maria Island, FL -- neighborhood interest



Thumb of 2015-12-19/PeggyC/c3d507
- taken with Canon PowerShot SX60 HS
Road going up Mount Jefferson, NC

Thumb of 2016-04-25/PeggyC/037963
2016 - Azalea

Live !

This isn't a dress-rehearsal ~
[Last edited by PeggyC - Apr 24, 2016 6:20 PM (+)]
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Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
May 21, 2016 7:41 AM CST
I have a Canon PowerShot also but the Elph model that my daughter bought for me. It takes wonderful pictures but the problem I am having with it is that the pictures that it takes are such a huge size in the MB range, that when I want to crop a single flower picture, which I need to have no more than 80KB, I loose most of the picture in cropping. Is there a way to set the camera to take smaller pics instead of pics that are in the 3mb range??? I take a lot of pics of my flowers to list on the Lily Auction and they are required to be no more than 80kb.
Lighthouse Gardens
Name: Asa

Bee Lover Garden Photography Region: Utah Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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evermorelawnless
May 21, 2016 8:49 AM CST
Cindy,

You're missing a couple of key elements here (and I read your post in the composition thread, too).

The file size (in MB) depends on a number of things, but we can reduce those to two for the purpose of your question:

1) The actual size (in pixels) of the original photograph itself (if it's a 6mb shot coming out of a Canon, I suspect that they're ~5184 x 3456 pixels) - think about that as the x,y axis (like a 3x5 index card - that's 15 square inches). That's the first factor.

2) The depth of information in the picture. For example, a color photograph has more information than a black and white - more colors = more information - and therefore is going to result in a larger file size. Think of that as the z-axis...or the "thickness" of the photograph.

So what you're trying to do is get your photos from 6mb to 80kb (which is pretty tiny).

The first question thing to do is figure out how big they are when they're displayed. Even if we reduced their x,y dimensions by a factor of ten - to 518x346 and they were only going to be displayed at 259x158, they'd be four times larger than they needed to be...that is to say that they'd have four times the information (file size) than what would be displayed. So, you need to find out, in pixels, how large the pictures are when they're displayed on the site. So get those dimensions.

After you have those, the process will be:

1) Crop the photo to contain whatever you want. Don't worry about the size (except in rough x,y proportion - if it's going to be displayed at 300x200 pixels, make the width of the crop roughly 3x the height). Just get it looking like you want. We'll fix the file size in a minute.

2) When you save the crop, most photo editors will allow you to save it at the dimensions you choose (and will do the math to keep it proportional). For example, you can tell it to save the crop at 300 pixels wide.

3) Check the file size of what you've saved. If it is more than 80kb, go to step 4.

4) You're likely saving the pictures as a .jpg. That's the file type. And if a .jpg's file size is larger than you want it, you can decrease the information that it contains by using your photo editor. For example, in microsoft's photo editor you would go to Picture ---> Compress Pictures and select one of the radio buttons.

Look at the screen shot below. The picture is some random thing from ATP (apologies, Vickie) with an original file size of 281kb (and is 1000x667 pixels in its original form). By telling it to compress for "Web Pages", it knocks the file size down to 44.1kb (well within your limits) but also reduces it to 488x299 (cutting it roughly in half).

Thumb of 2016-05-21/evermorelawnless/051468

Well, shoot. That wasn't exactly what I had in mind. It looks like when microsoft "compresses" pictures, it doesn't do anything with the depth of information on the z-axis, but rather shrinks it while keeping the quality of the .jpg.

Most other photo editors will allow you to specify the "quality" of the .jpg which, really, is the depth of information...the z-axis above.

If this doesn't make sense...or you're unable to get them small enough after following these instructions, post here and let me know what photo editor you're using.

But shooting from afar or shooting to crop or even shooting at a lower resolution isn't the right answer. Dealing with the size of the file proper is.


I share this blog with the unwashed cetacean - have a look! - http://garden.org/blogs/view/evermoredorphins
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
May 21, 2016 9:19 AM CST
Picture size is 4608 x 3456 and I am using the Canon cropping software. I do not see in the editing function where you can use a compress photo choice. I am going to experiment with this software for awhile and see what I can come up with. I printed out your comments and go from there. Thanks.
Lighthouse Gardens
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
May 21, 2016 10:02 AM CST
I tried both the Canon and Microsoft Windows Photo Gallery editing programs and neither one has that compress feature. I never had trouble like this when I was using my Nikon Coolpix 3.2 mp camera. The Canon is a 16mp camera. Does the size of the pixels make a difference? I am about ready to go back to using my Nikon. It was so much simpler.
Lighthouse Gardens
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Houseplants Cat Lover Birds Cactus and Succulents Garden Photography Butterflies
Hummingbirder Garden Sages
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gasrocks
May 21, 2016 11:12 AM CST
Compress is the wrong word. At any time you can make the file size (picture size) anything you want, larger or smaller. If you chose larger the software "invents" pixels that were not there before based on info from surrounding, existing pixels. If you chose smaller, it deletes some pixels while altering the pixels that will remain a bit so that little info is lost. Goals being in both cases to have the result look like the original. I use Irfanview, the most popular free photo software in the world. It is user friendly. On the top tool bar click on image, then on resize/resample. Common sizes are already listed for you to chose from. So is double and half. But you can just type in any number you want. Easy. You need to save your original picture in the size that the camera made. But you can create another copy of any size at any time. Many web sites have a limit on how large a picture can be for them to be able to handle it. For them you'd make a copy and resize it smaller. Gene
Name: Asa

Bee Lover Garden Photography Region: Utah Garden Ideas: Master Level Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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evermorelawnless
May 21, 2016 11:36 AM CST
Always shoot at max resolution. Use your Canon. Figure out how to make it work for you. There's no sense in taking pictures at a decremented resolution to fulfill some arbitrary constraints from a website.

Irfanview is a wonderful, free program and I'd highly recommend it. It's pretty powerful for what it is and has a small footprint.

In addition, not only can you vary the size of the x,y dimensions as Gene mentioned, but you can also adjust the compression (the z-axis or color depth that I mentioned - or "altering the pixels" as Gene explained). See example:
Thumb of 2016-05-21/evermorelawnless/f4beaf

By setting the quality to 27%, I managed to save an image that is 1000x677 pixels without a huge loss in quality - right at 80kb:
Thumb of 2016-05-21/evermorelawnless/65dc69

But the really huge question that you've not answered yet is at what resolution (pixels x pixels) are they going to be displayed. It would make NO sense to kill the quality (depth using this technique to decrement the quality) of a 4000 x 3000 if it were only going to show up at 200 x 150 on the website/screen. That's the first question in any of this.



I share this blog with the unwashed cetacean - have a look! - http://garden.org/blogs/view/evermoredorphins
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Houseplants Cat Lover Birds Cactus and Succulents Garden Photography Butterflies
Hummingbirder Garden Sages
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gasrocks
May 21, 2016 11:41 AM CST
If you look closely at Irfanview's resize/resample page, you might notice it offers 6 different algorithms for the sampling. Using the default one is fine. Hey, thing are complicated enough as it is. Gene
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
Hybridizer Irises Butterflies Charter ATP Member Birds Cat Lover
Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Vegetable Grower Daylilies Hummingbirder Heucheras
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Hemlady
May 21, 2016 11:49 AM CST
Thanks to both of you. Sounds like Irfanview is worth a try.
Lighthouse Gardens

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