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Thread: How will you setup your camera...

  1. #1

    Default How will you setup your camera...

    ...in a dimly lit restaurant?

    I was having a group dinner last night n was trying to take some pictures.

    Set camera to A mode, iso1000, f8, built in flash on. Pictures were bad.

    Not wanting to keep the group waiting, I switched to the green auto mode. Pictures looked ok on LCD, so we shot happily.

    However, after I got home n loaded up the pics, I realized that they were super noisy when viewed at 100%.

    So my question, how will you setup your camera in such a situation?

    I'm not asking for exact settings but rather asking for each user's experience so that I an try them out in future.

  2. #2
    Senior Member edutilos-'s Avatar
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    I would use an external mounted flash with a bounce card. Or not shoot.

    Alternatively, if it is not that dark, a fast lens would be able to do the job as well. But I see you have a 50mm F/1.8, so I presume you used that and it was not that helpful.

    What ISO was used for your Green Auto Mode pictures? The D7K should be relatively clean up to ISO3200 given the right know-how.

  3. #3

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    Didn't use the 50mm, too tight liao. Was using the 18-105mm at 18mm. ISO in green mode is at 500. I guess my know how of cam still lacking. Thought in green mode it should all b auto?
    Last edited by SkimMilk; 12th August 2011 at 10:22 AM.

  4. #4

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    Btw I didn't expected place to be so darn dark! From the pics it look bright. I would have brought my sb700 otherwise.

    Lesson learnt: do not assume, bring ur gear if u think u have the slightest possibility of using it!

  5. #5
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    my guess is you let the group sit at it is, the front person maybe too close to you and the rear person is 2 or 3 meters behind the first person, using built-in flash as main light the result will be disastrous.

    anyway, the high ISO photos are fine, as long you don't view it at 100%, don't print it big, post it on facebook is just nice.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    If bringing an external flash is not convenient, DIY a namecard flash bounce card and bring it along. May just save the day when you find yourself caught in such situation.

    For group photos, if you don't have a way to bounce the flash, I try not to position them in a "V" or "U" shaped, cos most of the time (*pardon my skills*), the front person will become ghosts and the last man behind will be underexposed.
    Too many great equipments but too little quality photos. [My Flickr] | [My Blog]

  7. #7

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    f8 is too much to ask for in low light hand held.
    You will have to use the widest aperture on you 18-55mm (I presume its around f3.5 to f4.5 at 18-35mm)
    That buys you 2 stops.
    D7K you should be able to use ISO3200 w/o much of a problem if you are picky on noise.
    ISO6400 should also work if you are not pixel peeping
    I'd also determine if the low light is tricking the camera to overexpose for the dark parts of the photo and put in a -EV compensation accordingly.

    Typically, if I'd use flash if I can.
    This will be bounced from the ceiling at an angle if possible.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    I would bump up to ISO3200, turn on Noise reduction, aperture to control depth of field depending how many people in the frame. I think it's ok for the group to wait up a while, at least get 2-3 shots, make sure no eyes go blinking.

    Next time bring your SB-700 along, bounce your flash to the ceiling. Either you use TTL or manual mode. You should get better results than the built-in flash.

  9. #9

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    wah, thanks for the input! You guys are enlightening me as I read!

    Catchlights: yup, they sat as it is.
    Skystrike: they are in V!!! Thanks for the namecard bounce card suggestion! Never thought of this!
    Pinholecam: thanks for the advice! I'll try it out next time! PS: I'm a pixel bitch (i'm a guy though)! I try not to exceed ISO 1600... =p
    wmayeo: i'm a noob and have a bad habit of not letting pple wait. Guess I should slow myself down in future!
    Last edited by SkimMilk; 12th August 2011 at 10:24 AM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    At 18mm, you'll have a deef DOF. You could have tried f/4 or f/5.6
    Alpha

  11. #11
    Member akszaksz's Avatar
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rashkae View Post
    At 18mm, you'll have a deef DOF. You could have tried f/4 or f/5.6
    That's true.

    I believe for most of the dark conditions, ISO1600 or 3200 with flash should be just fine, probably except for light from built-in flash might be too harsh.
    Some people may also try to use manual mode, set the iso, shutter speed, aperture & exposure manually.



    But of coz, never go indoor shots without an external flash. Ceiling bounce, bounce card, lambency sphere, or even diffuser cap, it's always better than built-in flash, haha.
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Quote Originally Posted by SkimMilk View Post
    wmayeo: i'm a noob and have a bad habit of not letting pple wait. Guess I should slow myself down in future!
    it's okay one. just tell your friends nicely, be spontaneous and interact with people even you are preparing.

  13. #13

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by wmayeo

    it's okay one. just tell your friends nicely, be spontaneous and interact with people even you are preparing.
    Thanks for the advice n encouragement!

  14. #14

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    U can diy a diffuser by using tissue paper, covering the built in flash.

    F8 is a no no. Try using the widest aperture.

  15. #15

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Quote Originally Posted by donut88 View Post
    U can diy a diffuser by using tissue paper, covering the built in flash.

    F8 is a no no. Try using the widest aperture.
    The TS was trying to take a group photo, I believe that f8 is required, using the widest aperture will cause some of the faces to be OOF. An external flash will help a lot.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    I d put iso 1600 or 3200, 1/20sec, f/5.6 (4 if its really dark) mirror up, bounced from an external flash with white card. if you have a tripod, use slow sync also can.
    F3, FTN, D700, just primes =)
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  17. #17

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Most of the times f/5.6 should suffice for group photos. Sometimes even f/4 is good enough for small group like this:



    This was shot in Av mode, f/4, ISO1600 with external flash bounced off the ceiling.

    Don't have to view 100% for photos like these, you're not going to blow them up anyway. If you pixel peep, I think you will never be satisfied.

    A 'noisy' photo is always better than a blur photo.
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Quote Originally Posted by mimik07 View Post
    Most of the times f/5.6 should suffice for group photos. Sometimes even f/4 is good enough for small group like this:



    This was shot in Av mode, f/4, ISO1600 with external flash bounced off the ceiling.

    Don't have to view 100% for photos like these, you're not going to blow them up anyway. If you pixel peep, I think you will never be satisfied.

    A 'noisy' photo is always better than a blur photo.
    thats nice.. did you balance the flash colour temperature with a tungsten gel?
    F3, FTN, D700, just primes =)
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  19. #19

    Default Re: How will you setup your camera...

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Ang View Post
    thats nice.. did you balance the flash colour temperature with a tungsten gel?
    Nope. Used a diffuser.
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  20. #20

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    My setting will be,
    M mode
    F-stop 4-8 depend on group
    ISO 200
    Shutter speed 1/60 - 1/80
    External flash

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