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Thread: What is bracketing?

  1. #1
    Senior Member erictan8888's Avatar
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    Default What is bracketing?

    hi,

    i am using the nikon D70.... dun know what they call it in other brands, but i believe other cameras should call it the same....

    i have learnt about aperture and shutter speed liao...
    also experimented with spot metering, matrix etc....

    i have always put bracketing aside, feeling it is very difficult to understand.... and i have just read up the manual on bracketing... and i have not much idea what it does and when to use it....

    can someone please enlighten me ?

    thanks
    Hope to learn from everyone here....

  2. #2

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    Bracketing is used when you are not too sure about the correct exposure to use. So say you set at 0 EV, depending on your settings, the camera will then take 1 image and apply 3 different exposure compensations on the image. -1 EV, 0 EV and +1 EV. (can be of different stops also)

  3. #3
    Senior Member sammy888's Avatar
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    Bracketing is the general term use in photography to describe "kiasu" procedure. It is not a term exclusive to Nikon.

    It is about taking a picture of a subject or scene but at more then one setting. Usually it is 3 settings though it can be more if time and film permits.

    This is not exclusive to digital photographer. People like myself have been doing this for years and is quite well known practice among most pro shooters especially those doing studio shots.

    For example....with the meter reading taking off our D70 for say a picture of the Merlion is F8 at speed of 125. Now we might not be sure if speed of 125 might be fast enough to freeze the water in its track coming from the Merlion mouth. So what we do is we will shoot say 3 shots by changing the speed of the shutter. We can set your camera to shutter priority. So now you can shoot one frame at 125 and then another at 250 and yet another at 500. This process is called bracketing. This is especially useful if you dont know how to guage your shot's final result since with film, you have to develope it then can you see the result unlike DSLR. WIth DSLR you still need to do this sometime as the LCD monitor on the camera is too small to see the details. ANd your meter reading might not be accurate if you took the reasding wrongly or use the wrong metering perimeter like matrix or spot or pin spot.

    This is call speed bracketing. But you can also use this to adjust DOF and exposure too. Bracketing can be done but manually changing the setting manual ( change speed setting or apecture ) the other way is to use the preset dial. You will notice that older SLR has that +1+2+3 or -1 -2 -3. This is indicative of anything from half stop to third stop in between. By selecting difference numbers it would select to stop down by either changing the speed or the apecture setting for you. Your D70 is able to now do this for you automatically. You can select the bracketing of 3 shots be in incremental of 1/2 stops or 1/3 stop in either - or + EV direction. Meaning. When you snap the first shot, the camera actual metering setting will be use. The next shot you trigger, the atuo bracket mode will do a -1stop from that first setting and then fire. The 3rd and last shot you fire, the auto braket will change to +1 and then fire. So now you have a shot that is correctly exposed base on the camera mettering and then one shot will be shot brighter and the last one darker. Or if could be to set to speed ..so you have one shot in "normal" speed and then a second frame which is 1 stop faster and the last frame which will be 1 stop slower.

    Being able to do this manual is a big advantage these days. In the earliers days you have to do this manually if your SLR does not have a compensation bracket dial. Or you still have to do this manually if the bracketing stops you choice happens to exceed the settings provided by the camera.

    For me...when I use my D70 to shoot crucial light shots or need to get more control on DOF.. I will normally bracket my shots up to 4 or more times. This is playing safe heh. It might waste film in the earlier days but if you can;t afford to go to the same place again to reshoot a second time...best to shot more then you need in various setting...then sorry. When I use to get professional studio to shot product shots that is what they do too as a precaution.

    This is especially so when you shoot slides as the exposure dynamic range for slide is not as wide as negatives. So if you get your light reading wrong you could be too far off that the picture you shot is worthless ( over exposed or too much highlight )
    Last edited by sammy888; 22nd December 2004 at 05:46 PM.

  4. #4

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    apart from the abovementioned exposure bracketing, there are also focus bracketing and whitebalance bracketing for certain cameras

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    Senior Member erictan8888's Avatar
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    guys, thanks so much for your advice...]
    esp. samy888 who took so much time to explain... you made it very clear and easy... thanks again....

    but one more question: how do i do bracketing on the D70?
    i mean how do i tell the camera i want to do bracketing and also, do i press my button once and the camera auto fire 3 shots or do i have to press 3 times?

    thanks
    Hope to learn from everyone here....

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by erictan8888
    guys, thanks so much for your advice...]
    esp. samy888 who took so much time to explain... you made it very clear and easy... thanks again....

    but one more question: how do i do bracketing on the D70?
    i mean how do i tell the camera i want to do bracketing and also, do i press my button once and the camera auto fire 3 shots or do i have to press 3 times?

    thanks
    Once you have set the bracketing mode, it will set the EV for you for the next series of shots. Check your manual for the bracketing modes. It has steps of 0.3 EV, 0.7 EV, 2 shots, 3 shots, etc. Your D70 should have a bracket button.

  7. #7
    Senior Member sammy888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erictan8888
    guys, thanks so much for your advice...]
    esp. samy888 who took so much time to explain... you made it very clear and easy... thanks again....

    but one more question: how do i do bracketing on the D70?
    i mean how do i tell the camera i want to do bracketing and also, do i press my button once and the camera auto fire 3 shots or do i have to press 3 times?

    thanks

    no problem lah...holiday mood...so not in the right frame of mind to work at the office heheh..

    Nope...D70 does not take your one frame you shot to then apply automatically the -1 stop and +1stop. You have to press one or two more times to do that. D70 only let you bracketing just 2-3 shots. I think Amekaze meant this too but typed too fast and explained it wrongly heh. I have a habit of doing that too sometime heh..so check properly what I write heheh might be misleading you

    The problem here is this...with this auto setting. If you forgot how many times you press the shutter..you might over or under shoot.

    You have to "ENABLED" that mode and if you want to stop doing so.."DISABLE" it. So if you forgot and start to shoot normally...you end up shooting the rest of the day in bracket mode hehehe ( over exposed on moment, correct the next and under exposed the next..etc)...so watch out. Check your led control panel for see what setting you are on to make sure you are out of auto bracket mode. And as I mentioned ..in auto bracket mode you have to remember you fire 3 shots if not you might end up just firing short or maybe more by an extra shot. When that happens...the next scene you bracket will start one EV difference. Hope you know what I mean. Of course looking at the led information screen will tell you that but if you keep watching from your viewfinder you might lose count.

    From what others have written you will now know bracketing is good for alot of reasons. As I said...it is a "kiasu" procedure. But I think a very valid procedure to adopt if you are shooting very important subjects or scene.

    and yes...very sorry ..I tend to be too long winded...know how to start but not sure how to finish heheh. Just read what you need and ignore the rest LOL

    To recap:

    Btw...you can also configure it to re-arrange the sequence. Instead of e.g under > normal > over, you can change it to normal > under > over
    Last edited by sammy888; 22nd December 2004 at 07:58 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member erictan8888's Avatar
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    thanks .... you have been a great help....
    Hope to learn from everyone here....

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