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Thread: Settings for fireworks

  1. #1

    Red face Settings for fireworks

    Hi! All. I wana shoot NDP fireworks not sure abt something need advice.

    1) which locations are ideal to shoot?
    2) how to focus (auto or manual)
    3) the settings required
    4) How to anticipate where the fireworks will show up?

    I'm using a D5000 with kit lens18-55mm AF.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Aiyo, you miss the shots tonight liao ! ! !

    MBS skypark . . . from the news.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    1) which locations are ideal to shoot?

    Few places.
    - One Fullerton outside
    - Merlion there
    - Esplanade there
    - Marina Bay Sands
    - Helix Bridge
    - The area beside Marina Bay Sands, ... near the sail or something like that.

    2) how to focus (auto or manual)
    - Auto

    3) the settings required
    - ISO 100, f16, bulb mode (hold trigger for 1 to 6 seconds depending on the firework)
    Do experiment

    4) How to anticipate where the fireworks will show up?
    - The locations are fixed. Go to NE Shows and Preview to find out the locations. Or look at photos posted by people here and you will know the locations.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by shelomoh View Post
    1) which locations are ideal to shoot?

    Few places.
    - One Fullerton outside
    - Merlion there
    - Esplanade there
    - Marina Bay Sands
    - Helix Bridge
    - The area beside Marina Bay Sands, ... near the sail or something like that.

    2) how to focus (auto or manual)
    - Auto

    3) the settings required
    - ISO 100, f16, bulb mode (hold trigger for 1 to 6 seconds depending on the firework)
    Do experiment

    4) How to anticipate where the fireworks will show up?
    - The locations are fixed. Go to NE Shows and Preview to find out the locations. Or look at photos posted by people here and you will know the locations.
    urm focus should be manual set to infinity (: if you dont have a shutter release, you can do like 3-5 seconds. but counting that the fireworks this week was so intense, maybe 1s for the last few shots will do (:
    -YANLING :)-
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Jacobs's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    You can use a "black card" during bulb exposures to temporarily cover the lens instead of closing the shutter each time. Simply hold the card in your hand, and move it in front of the lens (without bumping the camera!) to momentarily reduce the amount of light entering the lens.

    By the way, "black card" can be made very easily from corrugated cardboard, black cloth, or even a black hat, if that's all you've got handy.

    Enjoy the shooting..
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Erm focus should be manual not auto.
    Its not about how good your equpiment is, its how good the person behind it is.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    last weekend i went to marina bay sands skypark to take fireworks, tripod banned so i used the tripod to prop over other ppl heads and handhold the camera to take pic. results were not bad
    Canon 550D Sigma 17-70mm f2.8-4 HSM OS | 50mm f1.8 II | 55-250mm f4-5.6 IS | Di622 | BP-550D

  8. #8
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    1) which locations are ideal to shoot?
    You have to go scout yourself. Different people like different views and perspective. But once you find your ideal spot, you need go there early, setup and camp.

    2) how to focus (auto or manual)
    Manual of course. Focused using hyperfocal distance preferred. A very sturdy tripod is a must.

    3) the settings required
    Suggest Manual and bulb mode. Base ISO. Small Aperture F8-F16. . With a wire remote (wireless remote dangerous, many people with same system will be around). But need to meter the scene for the ambient lights, so you will not blow the stationary lights.

    If you want multiple fireworks in the same frame, you need to be leave the camera on bulb mode, and use a black card to cover the lens where there are no fireworks in sight. lift the black card when the fireworks come. Shutter speed best to be on bulb mode. Must watch it that the total exposed time (when black card up) is not too long so as not to blown the stationary lights.

    4) How to anticipate where the fireworks will show up?
    Experience. When you see the first streaks, fire the shutter/black card.

    Read more HERE.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 1st August 2010 at 11:10 AM.

  9. #9
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by shelomoh View Post
    1)
    2) how to focus (auto or manual)
    - Auto
    Quote Originally Posted by pinkpiggy209 View Post
    urm focus should be manual set to infinity (: if you dont have a shutter release, you can do like 3-5 seconds. but counting that the fireworks this week was so intense, maybe 1s for the last few shots will do (:
    Focus should be set to Manual focused to the hyperfocal distance not infinity.

    And leave lots of room for the fireworks (i.e. take a ,much wider view). You will need that space to do perspective distortion correction, so that the buildings do not "lean" inwards and crop after.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 1st August 2010 at 11:16 AM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Focus should be set to Manual focused to the hyperfocal distance not infinity.

    And leave lots of room for the fireworks (i.e. take a ,much wider view). You will need that space to do perspective distortion correction, so that the buildings do not "lean" inwards and crop after.
    ok >< sorry :x thanks!
    -YANLING :)-
    Flickr

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    uncle old fashion... do correct me if i am wrong.

    i tot to shoot firework... just set shutter speed to Bulb, 35mm~50mm lenses with apecture set to F8~F16, focus set to manual and infinity on a sturdy tripod with a a remote control cable with lock and a piece of matt black cardboard or cloth. multi exposures by uncover the lense when firework burst in sky and cover lense to prevent unwanted light. usually 3~5 firework bust per shot can produce stunning picture. wash out details can be recover in darkroom. no?

  12. #12
    Member Alan Chan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Nikon D700| 70-200mm f/2.8G VR2| 28-70mm f/2.8D| 85mm f/1.8G| 50mm f/1.8G| SB900/SB28| MB-D10

  13. #13
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by albertchng View Post
    uncle old fashion... do correct me if i am wrong.

    i tot to shoot firework... just set shutter speed to Bulb, 35mm~50mm lenses with apecture set to F8~F16, focus set to manual and infinity on a sturdy tripod with a a remote control cable with lock and a piece of matt black cardboard or cloth. multi exposures by uncover the lense when firework burst in sky and cover lense to prevent unwanted light. usually 3~5 firework bust per shot can produce stunning picture. wash out details can be recover in darkroom. no?
    Really depends on the location. 35mm to 50mm to reduce the occurrence of Keystone effect. But that is film days. Nowadays, with digital PP, you can correct distortion a lot easier. So it is no longer taboo to shot UWA. Plus, the locations really determine if need UWA. If shooting in Fullterton or Merlion, UWA is needed to get the fireworks in.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    I've my first experiences in shooting fireworks recently, I follow guidelines but based on my very newbie experience, I did not focus to infinity, it depend on situation isn't it?

    At infinity, the backdrop buildings I'm shooting (MBS) are blur, so I focus on the buildings, use AF (pre-focus) on MBS then change to MF, fine adjust if necessary. At F16, the fireworks are in focus together with MBS, helix and flyer.

  15. #15
    Senior Member sinned79's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    This works for me (at least for me):

    Settings:
    - Manual focus (set to infinity)
    - ISO 100
    - f16
    - 30 secs (shutter speed)

    PS: I am not too sure how to use bulb mode... so rely on very slow shutter speed.

    Tools:
    - Camera + lens of course
    - Steady tripod
    - Remote

    Result:

    (Ermm u can see the moon in this photo and some smoke from the fireworks, not flares btw)
    Last edited by sinned79; 2nd August 2010 at 04:35 PM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    my own setup:
    1. i autofocus first, then switch to manual (as the infinity setting of manual focus results in slightly OOF image)
    2. ISO 100
    3. Manual mode: f/5.6-f/8, 4-8 sec shutter + black card to control exposure (hard 2 do bulb cos i have no cable release for now).
    4. tripod w/ball head

    nice to have:
    1. UWA lens (or a spot that doesn't require UWA)... otherwise your fireworks get cropped and/or you don't get all of the skyline you want.
    2. cable release (i have yet to buy this)
    3. a really really good spot (go there early).

  17. #17
    Member iAltair's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by nathaniel View Post
    my own setup:
    1. i autofocus first, then switch to manual (as the infinity setting of manual focus results in slightly OOF image)
    2. ISO 100
    3. Manual mode: f/5.6-f/8, 4-8 sec shutter + black card to control exposure (hard 2 do bulb cos i have no cable release for now).
    4. tripod w/ball head

    nice to have:
    1. UWA lens (or a spot that doesn't require UWA)... otherwise your fireworks get cropped and/or you don't get all of the skyline you want.
    2. cable release (i have yet to buy this)
    3. a really really good spot (go there early).
    what if I do BULB and without remote?

    would I spoil the picture due to the shake?

  18. #18

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post

    3) the settings required
    Suggest Manual and bulb mode. Base ISO. Small Aperture F8-F16. . With a wire remote (wireless remote dangerous, many people with same system will be around). But need to meter the scene for the ambient lights, so you will not blow the stationary lights.

    If you want multiple fireworks in the same frame, you need to be leave the camera on bulb mode, and use a black card to cover the lens where there are no fireworks in sight. lift the black card when the fireworks come. Shutter speed best to be on bulb mode. Must watch it that the total exposed time (when black card up) is not too long so as not to blown the stationary lights.
    Let say it's required 25 seconds for metering the scene, how many seconds should one leave for the Firework when using the black card ?

    I presumed NR should be set to OFF ?

    Thanks.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by iAltair View Post
    what if I do BULB and without remote?

    would I spoil the picture due to the shake?
    A remote is a MUST for BULB as there is no way to press the shutter ( any small disturbance will impose blurriness on picture ).

  20. #20
    Member iAltair's Avatar
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    Default Re: Settings for fireworks

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy1 View Post
    A remote is a MUST for BULB as there is no way to press the shutter ( any small disturbance will impose blurriness on picture ).


    is it will end up like this?

    Edit: Sorry, i don't know how to resize the picture.

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