This is the difference in photos taken regular and one in the sports mode. Why are they so horrible looking in sports mode?
Assuming that the pics were made under the same lighting conditions. You don't say what camera brand and model was used. Most "sports" modes go for high speed in order to freeze motion. It's possible that your camera bumps the ISO up considerably in sports mode. As a general rule, as ISO goes up, "noise" interferes with picture quality. Some cameras more so than others. Were you just experimenting with sports mode?
Looks like it cranked the ISO up to the max. ISO is the adjustment on your camera that increases light sensitivity for low light shooting. The trade off for more sensitivity is the speckled stuff you see there in the first picture called "noise" or "grain".
Yes, I was trying to get wing action of the birds. I had problems cropping the sports photos on Picasa but with help from another member was able to crop and enlarge but the quality is so poor. I used a Canon S3 IS.
I think I'll just give up on using the sports mode.
You will need a high light bright sunny day, type of scenario, to get the results your looking for. Look in your manual for using TV mode. It takes some practice setting shutter speeds, but it is not too difficult. I took this photo through a double storm window in TV mode, using a Canon S5.
From forum photos
Let me add another 2-cents worth. If you cropped the sports picture quite a bit, that could account for some of the loss of sharpness. Also, upon re-examining the two pics, it appears that perhaps the sports shot was not in good focus. In a nutshell:
1. Sports mode might have given you a high ISO setting
2. Severe cropping will result in apparent loss of sharpness (because you're blowing up a small portion of the original photo)
3. Autofocus might have locked on to something other than the bird.
I suggest you study your manual and see exactly what the sports setting does. When using long telephoto, you might need to use a tripod or other brace. Check the autofocus method you have set in your camera; changing modes sometimes alters the autofocus setting (check manual). Also, be certain that you have image stabilization set (check manual).
Crunchpa is on the right track,....so others!
I also shoot on TV setting , [shutter priority]...set ISO first, around 100 or 200 when light is good, around 400
to 800 when not so good..and so on. Then use shutter speed, wing freeze you should start at around 1/1000.
Also, make sure the camera is set at max. pixels...or largest file setting.
Your cropped shot appears short of pixels. If you were working with *.jpg files ( and I think that is the default storage format for the Canon's IS series), you could be loosing definition by making multilpe copies, from one to another as you 'fiddle' with the image.
Here's the procedure for editing *.jpg files.
1. Never over write the original image. Preserve it. Always work on copies of the original. You may wish to set the file to 'read only' to prevent accidential over writing.
The *.jpg is a compressed format and a lossy one. Processing the image in a photo-editor and then re-writing may cause loss of detail. One common mistake is to ignore the write-back compression ratio.
2. Make a cropped image file to work with and save it under a different name. The new file size should be approximately proportional to the area, that is, the new file size should be at least the ratio of the cropped file divided by the original size times the original file size. If it is not, there has been a loss. See below about adjusting the compression ratio for saveing an editied result.
3. When you save an edited copy, always save it under a different name to protect the original and to save it for re-use; I add a dash number, e.g., if the original file was "img_1220 Land Yatch.jpg", I would save the the edited image as "img_122- Land Yatch-2.jpg". [Use the 'save as' feature rather than the 'save' feature.] Note the file compression that was used. You may have to click on 'details' or some such during the save-as process to see and/or adjust the compression setting.
3. Now compare file sizes: the original of the same cropped size to the edited one. The edited file must be as large or larger than the original image to minimize detail loss. There may be some loss anyway. You'll probably find that the compression setting will be 81 or higher to make the same file size.