Camera shake is the cause for many blurry and unclear pictures. It occurs when the camera is moved during the exposure and results in a shift or ghost-like image of everything in the picture. When holding the camera, it is recommended that the SteadyShot® function be turned on to reduce the effect of camera shake. Also, if shooting in low light, using the flash may help.
Keep in mind, however, there are times when using SteadyShot will not be as useful and using the flash may not be practical - such as when shooting with long shutter speeds or using a lens with a high zoom. With slow shutter speeds and high zoom lenses, camera movement that would ordinarily not be noticeable becomes more apparent. Even shooting stationary objects, it is recommended the camera be mounted on a tripod or placed on a stable surface when shooting in these situations.
Be aware of the shutter speed when taking pictures. The generally accepted rule to prevent blurring is to use a shutter speed as fast as "1 divided by the focal length." For example, this means if shooting with a focal length of 50mm, then you should use a shutter speed of 1/50 sec or faster. Use a shutter speed of 1/100 sec or faster when shooting with a 100mm focal length, and so forth.
If your subject is moving when taking the pictures and the subject appears blurred, then the selected shutter speed may be too slow. Increasing the shutter speed can help you capture the subject in sharper detail.
- The camera shake warning may appear when the camera selects slower shutter speeds.
- You can check the shutter speed of pictures you have already transferred to a computer with photo software by reviewing the Exif data for each photo.
Something else that may cause your pictures to appear blurry is if the camera is having difficulty auto focusing on your subject. First try shooting a few pictures using Manual Focus (MF) and compare them to the pictures you took with Auto Focus (AF).
It may be difficult to get sharp focus of your subject with AF when shooting in low light. To achieve proper focus make sure the flash is turned on and set the AF illuminator option to On or Auto. When the shutter button is pressed, the AF illuminator causes the camera to send out a momentary strobe of light to briefly illuminate your subject and allow the camera enough time to focus.
NOTE: The AF illuminator only works when using the AF mode. It is not available when using MF mode. If you are using a compact camera, your options to avoid camera shake and motion blur might be limited compared to more advanced and/or interchangeable lens models.