I've got this camera two weeks (bought it used). It worked fine at first resulting in great sharp pictures with proper lighting. But suddenly the good results started to be lesser and lesser. Ofcourse I went through the menu couples of times to get to know the camera better. This is the problem: when pointing the lens towards a light source it is resulting in pictures with strange vertical beams of light and the pics look heavily over exposed. There seems to be some pattern repeating also. Like when I take a picture of the tv with the pioneer logo on it, you will also see the logo floating in the air above the tv. I did set everything in auto mode and the lighting metering in ESP. At night time it is not that obvious but a light source (lamp) will result in a straight vertical beam of light like a laser.
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Please, install the Olympus ib program which originally is on the internal memory of the camera, or install the better and free Olympus Viewer program. It will automatically install the needed driver for the camera. I use the latter program on my notebook and pc and both are using Windows 7 (64bit) and it works splendid with the Olympus SP800uz.
First is to power off the camera and detach and reattach the lens just to make sure you are getting a good connection for the auto-focus
The second thing you want to do is shoot in RAW format to be sure you are able to retain the most information in the image.
Make sure the noise reduction is turned off in the camera menu
If you aren't using a cable shutter release you can opt to have the shutter delay after pressing the button. This will allow the camera to stop shaking from you pressing the button before it releases the shutter. You can find this option in the menu. Camera 2 > Anti-Shock > 3 sec.
Another consideration is the quality of the lens you are using. The G10 has great glass while a kit lens from Olympus may not give the fidelity throughout like the G10 does. You can try another lens if you have one available to see if this is the case. The G10 is a single purpose camera that has a great lens on it. The E-500 may need a better quality lens on it in order to achieve the sharpness you desire. Olympus makes a great 50mm macro that has an f2.0 brightness.
You can also set the camera to manual focus and then choose to do focus bracketing. This is a little more involved and you can find out how to do so in the manual for the camera.
The best thing I EVER bought for my Olympus was the Re-chargeable Lithium Ion battery. The worst thing I did was buy an off brand. That was a waste. I ended up getting the more expensive brand Olympus recommended and all was GREAT again!! 1,000's of pictures later and they still work great. Good Luck
You didn't say what type of batteries you are using. Best are CR-V3 lithium which should give 500 shots. 2300 mAh Ni-MH rechargeable batteries should give 200 shots. Worst are alkalines which Olympus do not recommend. Have you checked the contacts in the bottom of the battery chamber for cleanliness?
I bought this camera off ebay. I do not have any software for it. I cannot get it to transfer pictures to my computer. I think i need to install a driver. It is a Sharp 3x Optical Zoom Digital Still Camera VE-CG40. Where can I download a driver?
Check any adjustments that have to with resolution. Do they look more pixellated when you look at them on the computer. Or do the pictures look out of focus?
You should check under the Shooting guide #3 (blurring background) to see if this helps you.
If none of the settings (ISO settings, resolution, lighting, image stabilization mode) help you, contact HP next.
This camera, if I recall correctly, is a fairly basic camera. I would contact HP and see what they can do for you. Since the camera is close to the warranty period of one year, they should cover it under warranty.