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Thread: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

  1. #1

    Default Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Hi all! My first time posting on Clubsnap and would really appreciate some help. I'm new to photography and own a Nikon D40 Kit. I was requested to help take photos as an official photographer for an upcoming dinner event, for presumably at least 300 people.

    Setting wise, it should be in a function/ball room kind of place. Would the D40 with Kit Lens suffice to take photos for such an event? Also, would it still be possible to take relatively ok pictures without an external flash unit?

    Pls also recommend on the kind of settings on the camera that would be most appropriate for the night (ISO, WB, Priority Mode?, Flash Mode, etc). I really hope to take some decent photos so that I don't disappoint. Your advice are greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Yes, your kit lens should suffice. However you might need a flash (Like SB400, 600, 800) for better exposure. If the place has a low ceiling, you can bounce the flash.

  3. #3
    Member Buggy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    it'll be helpful if there's external flash. perhaps you can consider renting one unit for that day's event?

  4. #4
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    flash is a must.

    get a SB800 if you can, it is more powerful
    get a bounce card too, if you can't than shoot direct
    flash ttl, always check your lcd, no good re take, if over or under adjust flash compensation
    always check your distance, even the most powerful flash also can't let you shoot from far far away.

    camera manual mode
    ISO 400~800,
    shutter speed 1/60
    aperture, solo f4, group f5.6~f8
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
    www.benjaminloo.com | iStock portfolio

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    My DnD settings with flash

    Flash set to rear syn

    Shutter: 1/30

    Aperture: F4 for solo, F5.6 for group (Increase if needed)

    ISO 400 - 800

    The rear syn is to freeze the subject and allow more light in, so that it appears more nature.

    So far so good, no complains yet

  6. #6

    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Hi everyone, thanks alot for your inputs, really appreciate it. Looks like I need to get an external flash somehow. Haha I'll try renting it maybe =) Any idea what are the main differences between the SB 600 and SB 800? Could somehow like explain in pretty layman terms because I don't get alot of photography jargon and acronyms yet. =P

  7. #7

    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    In ur usage, SB800 would be good as it is more powerful than the SB600(i.e. can output more light).
    Chanxj
    my blog @ http://sgsnap.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Quote Originally Posted by chanxj View Post
    In ur usage, SB800 would be good as it is more powerful than the SB600(i.e. can output more light).
    ... so it can reach further if you are shooting from a distance

    or make the picture look brighter with a milder setting on your flash (while you need to +0.3 maybe from a SB600)

    But otherwise, i find that the time for the flash to recharge after firing once is quite comparable. the difference in recharging time (also maybe known as refresh time?) decreases when you +1, +2, +3 on your flash output.


    for 300 people, so it's a small ballroom?
    suggested before in earlier post was bounce against low ceilings. if you find colour cast due to orange roofs, then add in your bounce card and expose just a little bit to throw some light in front to make the light falling on your subjects whiter.

    if high ceiling, rely on bounce card. point flash head 30 degree forward from an upright position, so that your attached flash card is also tilting forward. this throws more light forward seemingly.

    but flash unit aside, you need to control your shutter speed well.

    adjust aperture for the sharpness you want. using f5.6 or such keeps all your subjects in focus. this is in contrast to taking group photos with f2.8 then you focus on the front person, with everyone standing behind looking not sharp even though they are not moving.

    adjust shutter speed for your effects. 1/60 is safe enough for handling. 1/40 (shutter open longer a bit), might be susceptible to your own handshake. but that allows more light to enter and thus ambient light is better.

    reverse: if you increase speed, 1/125 eg. you can easily handle people walking stage for performance or speech etc, but your background will appear darker even though your subjects are well lit by your flash.

    someone also suggested using rear-sync. can google this if you not sure what it does. this setting, you better experiment first. it needs some practice to use it effectively. if not all your shots might appear "moving". but that's ok if you meant to capture motion like people dancing. just remember to pan a little and "lense-follow" your subject if they are dancing.
    Last edited by GaoZi; 14th March 2008 at 08:24 PM. Reason: typo error at "if high ceiling..."

  9. #9

    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Hi chanxj and GaoZi, thanks alot for your advice. I now know more or less the settings for the night, just that applying it is a different issue altogether.

    Gonna cross my fingers and hope the little experience I have photography thus far can pull me through the night. Wish me luck guys! And thanks for all the honest and helpful inputs you guys have given me. Clubsnap is the way to go!!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Quote Originally Posted by jonsoon View Post
    Hi chanxj and GaoZi, thanks alot for your advice. I now know more or less the settings for the night, just that applying it is a different issue altogether.

    Gonna cross my fingers and hope the little experience I have photography thus far can pull me through the night. Wish me luck guys! And thanks for all the honest and helpful inputs you guys have given me. Clubsnap is the way to go!!
    Hope you have more practice before the real events with your DSLR + Flash settings.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Equipment Set-up and Settings for Dinner event

    Quote Originally Posted by Snowcrash View Post
    Hope you have more practice before the real events with your DSLR + Flash settings.
    ya man. being the official pg for a 300 people event is no joke. good luck and see if u wana post your pics here after that.

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