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Use of a digital camera for records
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giannattasio
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2009 9:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Go for it Eleven! The best way to figure out photography is just dive in, you won't break or ruin anything. The great thing about digital is you can make one mistake after another while learing and it doesn't cost you a cent. I set my camera on automatic and turn the flash off, doc. pictrues come out great. Buona fortuna.
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Carole
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 3:24 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

I became intrigued by this thread, though I have never visited an FHC - don't even know if they exist in Italy...

But I just wanted to try photographing a document from my screen to see if it worked. It's a form to request docs from State Archives and it seems to have worked pretty well. I'll try on a ships manifest in a minute, or maybe a census form.

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Carole
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 3:43 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

This was a document that Emmy had posted via Image Shack.

This one didn't come out too bad either. My digital camera is really old Fuji S340 and I used a bit of zoom., so I was quite pleased with the results...

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Eleven
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 10:03 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Thats pretty good, Carole. I'll tell ya, its a lot better than the copies I got 16 years ago, from their copier. Some were very dark.

Oh..I notice its not the entire document. Are those using cameras at the FHL getting the whole thing..or in two parts?
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qnana
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 10:27 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Since reading this thread I have been photographing documents at the FHL with very good luck. I use my husband's Kodak EasyShare Z812. Kodak advises you to use a tripod but I just steady my arm on the side of the viewer and have gotten some great images. I move the image to the left of the viewscreen and stand slightly to the right so I can avoid the glare from the light of the viewer onto the image. I don't use flash and have the camera set on TEXT. I am camera illiterate but have had great success. I have even shared some of my images with a friend in Florida for his research and he thinks they are great. One thing - I turn the camera off between shots and don't have any problem shooting views over a 3 hour period. I say, go for it! You have nothing to lose!
Here's to saving money and getting good images! qnana
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Emmy
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 2:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Hi Carole
Did you enlarge the image before you took the picture from your monitor screen and then used the zoom on your camera?
Emmy

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charliemis
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PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2009 12:43 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Carole wrote:
I became intrigued by this thread, though I have never visited an FHC - don't even know if they exist in Italy...

But I just wanted to try photographing a document from my screen to see if it worked. It's a form to request docs from State Archives and it seems to have worked pretty well. I'll try on a ships manifest in a minute, or maybe a census form.

Hi Carole,

There are quite few FHCs located in Italy.....I found locations for my cousins in the cities of Foggia and Bari.....they are listed at:

www.familysearch.org/e...et_fhc.asp

There are about 45 listed.....I think you are located near the Swiss border and there is one in Como (not sure how far that is from you).....you might want to check the list for others which might be closer.

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Eleven
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PostPosted: Thu May 14, 2009 8:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Ok...help.

My husband got a digital camera for xmas. I believe its an inexpensive one. Its a sanyo. Until this past weekend, he only tested it in my livingroom..it took decent pix. Saturday, we went to my grandsons communion.. Out of over a dozen pix..only a few came out good. He had the resolution set way too high, so I had to shrink them all, but that wasnt the problem. The problem (i think) is the day was overcast. Most of the outside pictures have too much blue in them. I dont know if he has something set wrong, or what..and he really doesnt know what he is doing with it (God forbid he tries to read and learn). I dont want to touch it..its his.

I had been toying with the idea of going back to the FHL. My FHL is the one that you have to wait for the volunteer to put your film in the printer...not a scanner, they dont have one..the regular printer. If I have to deal with that..I wont go...so I wanted to use the camera.

Because Carol tested hers on her computer and it gave such a nice clear pix, I decided to try his. I shut the lights in the room..the way it would be at my FHL..dim to little light. I pulled up a couple of documents (which werent all that good to begin with, but I took that into consideration). I took 3 shots, 3 different resolutions, no flash and the zoom on. They all came terrible...and all had that same bluish cast.

Oh, I forgot to add, I made it so I could see the entire document on my screen. I have a 17 inch widescreen, but the document left a couple of inches on each side of it, black. I notice carole did a partial document. Is that what you guys are doing..taking the document in two sections?

Does anyone know if thats due to the settings or its just a crummy camera?

Can someone recommend a camera to me..that will take decent microfilm pix for under 200 dollars (I am thinking about getting my own).
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tjbrn
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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2009 9:11 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Quite a lot to reply to. Three photos are hardly enough to get to know the limitations of the camera, the conditions, etc. I'm sure others have their own preferences in cameras but mine is Canon. You can pick up a Canon A1000 IS for about $120. It is a 10 megapixel resolution with a 4X optical zoom. I am not familiar with Sanyo; however, the general rule of thumb is to stick with a company that specializes in a given product and applying that to cameras I'd look at Canon and Nikon although there are others. Also don't use digital zoom, just the optical zoom or your photos will tend to be grainy. The camera has an abundance of user adjustable settings so you can experiment to your heart's content if you are curious to try out different shooting modes. The camera uses two AA batteries. I've owned three Canons so far and all of them have had excellent battery life. By the way all of those cameras are still in operation and taking good photos.
Here is a link to an independent review of the A1000 IS www.digitalcamera-hq.c...views.html

And one to the camera on Canon's site: www.usa.canon.com/cons...elid=17479

Hope this helps.

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Emmy
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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2009 2:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

This may sound a silly question but what is the difference between optical zoom and digital zoom. ?

At first I thought it may mean that you dont use the zoom lense on the camera but I just got myself all confused Embarassed Embarassed so I thought I'd better ask Smile

Emmy

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tjbrn
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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2009 3:56 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Basically optical zoom uses the 'optics', that is the lens to magnify or bring an object closer whereas digital zoom is more like a software enhancement whereby a portion of the image is magnified simulating an optical zoom. Some advertisements tout a camera's zoom as 12X but look closely at that as it might be including both the optical 3X and the digital 4X zoom properties--3x times 4x = 12x. The 3X is what really matters as one can use a quality photo editing program to achieve the same effect as digital zoom. Up to a point, the higher the resolution (megapixel count) the more detail the camera can capture. It hasn't been that long ago that many believed 10 megapixels was too much to cram on a CCD chip but technology has made significant improvements since then. Zoom and resolution are features which are independent of each other.

Here is a link to a more thorough explanation of the difference between optical and digital zoom. www.photoxels.com/arti...-zoom.html

I recently purchased a Canon SX10 IS (10 megapixels with a 20X optical zoom) so I am still getting acquainted with all of its features. I haven't tried it out on documents yet although I will later in the year when I get back to working on more films at my local FHC. I opted for that particular camera as a compromise between my other point and shoot cameras and stepping up to a DSLR. The price was less than half an entry level DSLR and I didn't have to fork out the big, big bucks for an Image Stabilized lens or Vibration Reduction lens depending on manufacturer terminology--the deals on DSLR don't generally include image stabilized lens, one has to read the ads very carefully. That means no lens changing, which in turn means no stints in a camera shot for cleaning (dust) because of changing lens, etc. The 20X optical zoom is the equivalent of a 500 mm lens for a 35 mm camera so I can take wildlife shots as well as tame ones Wink Sorry, that is really more information than you need!

BTW here are some shots I took with the SX10IS the week I got it. The photos are greatly reduced for the web but you should get an idea of the detail that a 10 megapixel camera will give you. Click on one of the images and then click on it again to open it up so that you get the effect of the detail. Once opened up you can scroll through the photos faster. Just a hint on the way the web software I am using works.

tomarie.tzo.com/wp/gal...rleston%2F

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Emmy
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PostPosted: Fri May 15, 2009 5:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Thanks Tom
I think I understand the difference now, and it certainly does give a better photograph with more clear details. I have an Olympus ?10 35mm camera too which I havent used for a long time since getting my digital camera. I have a few extra lenses for the Olympus, which were quite expensive when I bought them, only problem with that camera is its quite bulky and heavy when all the other bits and pieces are in the camera bag and also quite heavy when any of the lenses are attached, I have a tripod for it too but so far havent used it. My digital camera is much more convenient when I go on holiday but I've just recently dicovered I can purchase an Olympus digital camera which would enable me to use those same lenses. Pity I hadnt found out about that before I bought the digital I have now Sad
I'm seriously thinking about treating myself in the near future.

Thanks again for the information Tom
Emmy

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Eleven
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PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2009 2:00 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Thanks for the suggestion. We used the camera again late today. My granddaughter was going to her senior prom..so you know grandma had to be there to see them.

My daughter has a Kodak. Hers took beautiful pix. My husband used his..and we still got that bluish tinge to some of the pix. I think they were pix not taken in direct sun.

Believe me, the last thing I was interested was in cameras. My kids use theirs and send me the pix, so I had no real need. My husband still thinks its the 50s and when he got this camera he mumbled that he didnt want pix on his computer... he wanted them developed...lol Heh, he cant use the camera with his laptop..it doesnt seem to be compatible, or something (his laptop is about 5 years old). I have to do use my computer.

Anyway...I dont think he knows what he is doing..similar to how he doesnt know what he is doing on his laptop..but, in that case, he has me...who does. I know nothing about these cameras..so he is on his own. If I read the book..he will then give me agita when he uses it. He has no patience and I dont think he has much interest, because the little he does read, he doesnt remember..lol So..I decided to just get my own..so that if I do go to the fhl..I will know what I am doing.
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lilbees
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PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2009 8:58 am    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Before going to the center to try taking some pics of the films, I went through the suggested settings for my camera and took a bunch of pics to see what the various settings were.

Some of the suggestions were:

1. Use a tripod (a short one) to keep the pic from blurring. I found a cheap one and tried to use it a few times but later gave up and just hold it.

2. Take the pic in black and white

3. Depending if your camera takes landscape or portrait make sure you turn the camera so it will take a portrait shot.

4. I set mine to macro with no flash. (The macro setting on my camera is for taking a closeup pic of a single flower for example). I do have image stabilization on my camera so I don't have to worrry as much about shaking, etc.

5. I practiced using a sheet of 8 1/2 x 11 white paper on a surface and aiming my camera so I could take it all in with one shot. I tape a sheet to the surface at the fhl and make sure my document is sized to that then I take the pic. Works for me!

There are probably some other things I do but can't remember right now.

lilbees

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Eleven
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PostPosted: Sat May 16, 2009 4:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Use of a digital camera for records Reply with quote

Thank you so much. I pasted those tips to notepad. I went out today to look for that canon. Actually, I went out for a bunch of other things and ended up in walmart. They had it on display but they had none. I am going out again tomorrow, I will look again...maybe in best buy. If not, I saw them online...I can order one there.
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