Fool questions

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Stuart Noble, Apr 23, 2005.

  1. Stuart Noble

    Stuart Noble Guest

    Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I have
    some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.
    At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity? Do you always need a remote
    lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the button that causes the shake?
    On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed and
    not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure? I've
    tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I can see
    a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.
    So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me the
    best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice is
    likely to not be the best?
    Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual, feel
    free to say so :)
     
    Stuart Noble, Apr 23, 2005
    #1
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  2. Stuart Noble

    Ed Ruf Guest

    On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 11:29:53 GMT, in rec.photo.digital "Stuart Noble"
    <> wrote:

    >Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I have
    >some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.
    >At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity? Do you always need a remote
    >lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the button that causes the shake?


    Depends upon the person, but is a contributor. A typical rule is to use
    1/f, where f is the 35mm equivalent focal length of the lens as a
    delimiter. You can do better with this in practice and the 995 also has a
    the BSS function which will help you get the best shot from several of the
    same subject. You can use the self timer on a tripod if you don't want to
    spring for the not so cheap remote.

    >On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed and
    >not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure? I've
    >tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I can see
    >a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.


    Unlike a 35mm camera which you might be familiar with, the actual focal
    length of compact cameras is very short, leading to large depth of field
    even at the largest apertures. So varying the aperture doesn't give you the
    large change in depth of field as with a 35mm camera. The lens on the 995
    isn't the fastest, so the program mode will tend more toward the wide open
    side unless you are in very well lit situations. How you choose you
    exposure will depend upon the subject. Landscapes and wide angle shots can
    be shot with slower shutter speed, wildlife or longer telephoto shots
    require higher shutter speeds.

    >So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me the
    >best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice is
    >likely to not be the best?


    Yes, the Nikon auto WB doesn't do a great job when the flash is used, best
    to set manually to Speedlight. Indoor lighting dominated by incandescent or
    fluorescent should also be manually set for best results. Some may argue
    sunrises/and sunsets need you explicitly set daylight, however that has not
    been my experience.

    >Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual, feel
    >free to say so :)


    Some useful links:
    http://webpages.charter.net/bbiggers/DCExperiments/html/cp_99x.html
    http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam/User-Guide/995/



    ----------
    Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html
     
    Ed Ruf, Apr 23, 2005
    #2
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  3. Stuart Noble

    John DH Guest

    Your questions are not dumb, but the answers to them are not short. You do
    need to read the manual, but also read up on basic photography. There is an
    enormous amount of resources on the net, try this link to start
    http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html Although this
    author talks about film, 99% applies to digital. This one
    http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it a little further
    on.

    As you get the hang of it, you will find that manual control of your camera
    is more likely to give the results you are looking for.

    These two sites answer your questions better than I can.

    Happy Shooting

    John D

    PS Keep asking the questions :)

    "Stuart Noble" <> wrote in message
    news:Rkqae.2398$...
    > Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I

    have
    > some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.
    > At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity? Do you always need a remote
    > lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the button that causes the

    shake?
    > On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed and
    > not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure?

    I've
    > tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I can

    see
    > a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.
    > So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me the
    > best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice is
    > likely to not be the best?
    > Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual,

    feel
    > free to say so :)
    >
    >
     
    John DH, Apr 23, 2005
    #3
  4. Stuart Noble

    Stuart Noble Guest

    "Ed Ruf" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 11:29:53 GMT, in rec.photo.digital "Stuart Noble"
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >>Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I
    >>have
    >>some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.
    >>At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity? Do you always need a

    remote
    >>lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the button that causes the
    >>shake?

    >
    > Depends upon the person, but is a contributor. A typical rule is to use
    > 1/f, where f is the 35mm equivalent focal length of the lens as a
    > delimiter. You can do better with this in practice and the 995 also has

    a
    > the BSS function which will help you get the best shot from several of

    the
    > same subject. You can use the self timer on a tripod if you don't want

    to
    > spring for the not so cheap remote.
    >
    >>On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed

    and
    >>not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure?
    >>I've
    >>tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I can
    >>see
    >>a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.

    >
    > Unlike a 35mm camera which you might be familiar with, the actual focal
    > length of compact cameras is very short, leading to large depth of field
    > even at the largest apertures. So varying the aperture doesn't give you
    > the
    > large change in depth of field as with a 35mm camera. The lens on the

    995
    > isn't the fastest, so the program mode will tend more toward the wide

    open
    > side unless you are in very well lit situations. How you choose you
    > exposure will depend upon the subject. Landscapes and wide angle shots

    can
    > be shot with slower shutter speed, wildlife or longer telephoto shots
    > require higher shutter speeds.
    >
    >>So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me

    the
    >>best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice

    is
    >>likely to not be the best?

    >
    > Yes, the Nikon auto WB doesn't do a great job when the flash is used,

    best
    > to set manually to Speedlight. Indoor lighting dominated by incandescent
    > or
    > fluorescent should also be manually set for best results. Some may argue
    > sunrises/and sunsets need you explicitly set daylight, however that has
    > not
    > been my experience.
    >
    >>Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual,
    >>feel
    >>free to say so :)

    >
    > Some useful links:
    > http://webpages.charter.net/bbiggers/DCExperiments/html/cp_99x.html
    > http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam/User-Guide/995/
    >
    >
    >
    > ----------
    > Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    > See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    > http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html


    Thanks Ed. Much appreciated.


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    Stuart Noble, Apr 23, 2005
    #4
  5. All Things Mopar, Apr 23, 2005
    #5
  6. Stuart Noble

    Stuart Noble Guest

    "All Things Mopar" <> wrote in message
    news:Xns96415BAA09BDCReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    > John DH commented courteously...
    >
    > [snip]
    >> http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html
    >> http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it

    > a
    >
    > Just lurking here, but I wanted to thank you for the two
    > excellent web site links.


    Agreed.
    What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your camera
    was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the shutter speed. Or
    vice versa for that matter.
    What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for free. I
    suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read anything about
    fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so it's a good way to
    learn.
     
    Stuart Noble, Apr 23, 2005
    #6
  7. Stuart Noble commented courteously...

    [snip]
    > What I love about digital cameras is that you can
    > try things out for free.


    Me, too! But, I have to be constantly aware of not getting
    "vomit of the pictures" by taking too many of the same
    thing in order to ensure I've "got it right". So, I need
    to be ruthless culling out the near-dups and/or the ones
    that aren't really that nice from a composure standpoint
    or some technical issue.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
     
    All Things Mopar, Apr 23, 2005
    #7
  8. Stuart Noble

    Ed Ruf Guest

    On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 14:44:38 GMT, in rec.photo.digital "Stuart Noble"
    <> wrote:


    >Agreed.
    >What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your camera
    >was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the shutter speed. Or
    >vice versa for that matter.


    If you have a fixed aperture lens, the only thing to vary is shutter speed.
    And yes if there were a fixed shutter speed, you could vary the aperture.
    Yes, there are combinations of both which result in the same exposure. This
    is know as the Reciprocity Rule. See for instance (from a google search on
    camera reciprocity):
    http://www.parkwestcameraclub.org/tips/reciprocity.html
    http://www.apogeephoto.com/feb2003/Mkees2_2003.shtml

    >What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for free. I
    >suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read anything about
    >fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so it's a good way to
    >learn.


    There you go. Nothing ventured, nothing learned.

    ----------
    Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html
     
    Ed Ruf, Apr 23, 2005
    #8
  9. Stuart Noble

    paul Guest

    Stuart Noble wrote:
    > "All Things Mopar" <> wrote in message
    > news:Xns96415BAA09BDCReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    >
    >>John DH commented courteously...
    >>
    >>[snip]
    >>
    >>>http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html
    >>>http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it

    >>
    >>a
    >>
    >>Just lurking here, but I wanted to thank you for the two
    >>excellent web site links.

    >
    >
    > Agreed.
    > What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your camera
    > was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the shutter speed. Or
    > vice versa for that matter.
    > What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for free. I
    > suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read anything about
    > fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so it's a good way to
    > learn.




    The best way to learn is do some test shots with different settings and
    either write them down or check the EXIF to see exactly what happens.
    This way you learn how it works specifically on your camera &
    specifically in those conditions.
     
    paul, Apr 23, 2005
    #9
  10. Stuart Noble

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Stuart Noble wrote:
    > Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I have
    > some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.
    > At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity? Do you always need a remote
    > lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the button that causes the shake?
    > On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed and
    > not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure? I've
    > tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I can see
    > a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.
    > So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me the
    > best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice is
    > likely to not be the best?
    > Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual, feel
    > free to say so :)
    >
    >

    The shutter speed at which a tripod is needed depends on a number of
    things, such as the size (max f-stop, ie, lowest number), and the
    steadiness of the photographer. When I was young, I could hand-hold
    nice solid 3-4 second exposures. I have never owned a tripod because it
    conflicts with the type of photography I do. Now, I am not nearly so
    steady as I was, and I am thinking of getting a tripod.
    A remote shutter release can be nice for certain types of pictures, not
    to reduce the effect of pressing the shutter button, but for
    convenience. Newer cameras offer wireless ones that will let you get
    into the picture without using a timer, or just make it easier to set up
    poses.
    The main reason shutter speed is varied for bracketing is that it is
    easier to control that quickly than to change the aperture.

    I rarely use manual settings because for the type of photographs I take,
    I don't have time to deal with them. When I do, they are available, and
    sometimes none of the automatic modes are suitable for a specific condition.

    I hope these rather general answers are helpful.


    --
    Ron Hunter
     
    Ron Hunter, Apr 23, 2005
    #10
  11. Stuart Noble

    Ron Hunter Guest

    John DH wrote:
    > Your questions are not dumb, but the answers to them are not short. You do
    > need to read the manual, but also read up on basic photography. There is an
    > enormous amount of resources on the net, try this link to start
    > http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html Although this
    > author talks about film, 99% applies to digital. This one
    > http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it a little further
    > on.
    >
    > As you get the hang of it, you will find that manual control of your camera
    > is more likely to give the results you are looking for.
    >
    > These two sites answer your questions better than I can.
    >
    > Happy Shooting
    >
    > John D
    >


    >
    >
    >

    Re: Manual settings.

    A good photographer will make good pictures with manual settings, or
    with auto settings.
    A bad photographer will make lousy pictures with manual settings, and
    fair ones with auto settings.
    A new photographer may be so intimidated, and disappointed with his
    results with manual settings that he will give up. I would suggest a
    slow working into manual settings as experience grows. Also, not
    everyone can be a NASCAR driver, some of us do well to control our Honda
    Civics. It is similar with photographers and cameras.


    --
    Ron Hunter
     
    Ron Hunter, Apr 23, 2005
    #11
  12. Stuart Noble

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Stuart Noble wrote:
    > "All Things Mopar" <> wrote in message
    > news:Xns96415BAA09BDCReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    >
    >>John DH commented courteously...
    >>
    >>[snip]
    >>
    >>>http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html
    >>>http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it

    >>
    >>a
    >>
    >>Just lurking here, but I wanted to thank you for the two
    >>excellent web site links.

    >
    >
    > Agreed.
    > What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your camera
    > was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the shutter speed. Or
    > vice versa for that matter.
    > What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for free. I
    > suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read anything about
    > fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so it's a good way to
    > learn.
    >
    >

    Yes, you could. Basically, there are three things you can change.
    Aperture, shutter speed, and lens 'speed' (amount of light gathered).


    --
    Ron Hunter
     
    Ron Hunter, Apr 23, 2005
    #12
  13. Stuart Noble

    Scott W Guest

    As for what shutter speed you will need a tripod, the best thing to do
    is try a bunch of shots and get a feel for it. When zoomed out you can
    use a long shutter time and when zoomed in less. Using the optical view
    finder will help hold the camera steady.

    There is a neat trick you can do with the 995, when put in timer mode
    you can get a 3 second time, rather then the normal 10. You will have
    to look in the manual but I believe you do two pushes of the shutter
    button, when in timer mode, to get the shorter time. This is very
    useful when using a tripode as three seconds will give the camera time
    to get stable.

    Make sure you have the current firmware in the camera, go to Nikon's
    site to check. The older firmware did a bad job of WB in incandescent
    lights.

    Scott
     
    Scott W, Apr 23, 2005
    #13
  14. On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 11:10:18 -0400, Ed Ruf <>
    wrote:

    >On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 14:44:38 GMT, in rec.photo.digital "Stuart Noble"
    ><> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Agreed.
    >>What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your camera
    >>was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the shutter speed. Or
    >>vice versa for that matter.

    >
    >If you have a fixed aperture lens, the only thing to vary is shutter speed.
    >And yes if there were a fixed shutter speed, you could vary the aperture.
    >Yes, there are combinations of both which result in the same exposure. This
    >is know as the Reciprocity Rule. See for instance (from a google search on
    >camera reciprocity):
    >http://www.parkwestcameraclub.org/tips/reciprocity.html
    > http://www.apogeephoto.com/feb2003/Mkees2_2003.shtml
    >
    >>What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for free. I
    >>suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read anything about
    >>fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so it's a good way to
    >>learn.

    >
    >There you go. Nothing ventured, nothing learned.
    >
    >----------
    >Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    >See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    >http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html



    Ed,

    My dad was a professional photographer and we discussed the
    reciprocity rule when I was first playing around with my brand new
    Minolta 101. Whew! 35 years ago! Well in any case he suggested I set
    my camera up on a tripod and take a series of pictures of this flower.
    So I did and sent them off to be developed. When I got them back,
    they were all exposed correctly. Dad asked me what else I noticed
    about the pictures. Of course the more inportant lesson that my dad
    was pointing out is what happened to the depth of field as I changed
    the F stop.

    Still a great way to get your arms around depth of field and F stops
    for a new photographer. As someone else pointed out, Digital pics are
    free, and can be critiqued almost instantly. Bang away!!! .....dave
     
    CommanderDave, Apr 23, 2005
    #14
  15. Stuart Noble

    Ed Ruf Guest

    On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 17:21:10 GMT, in rec.photo.digital CommanderDave
    <> wrote:

    >My dad was a professional photographer and we discussed the
    >reciprocity rule when I was first playing around with my brand new
    >Minolta 101. Whew! 35 years ago! Well in any case he suggested I set
    >my camera up on a tripod and take a series of pictures of this flower.
    >So I did and sent them off to be developed. When I got them back,
    >they were all exposed correctly. Dad asked me what else I noticed
    >about the pictures. Of course the more inportant lesson that my dad
    >was pointing out is what happened to the depth of field as I changed
    >the F stop.


    True, but as I also stated in an earlier reply, that depth of field change
    is much much smaller with the extremely short focal lengths found in
    compact cameras such as the CP-995. The only see way to achieve it with
    such cameras is at full telephoto, or even better with the use of an add-on
    teleconverter. As can bee seen here:
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Macro/reduced/pages/DSCN2939_JPG.htm
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Tele/3x/reduced/pages/DSCN7520_JPG.htm
    Taken with a CP-990 and TC3.
    ----------
    Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html
     
    Ed Ruf, Apr 23, 2005
    #15
  16. On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 13:45:58 -0400, Ed Ruf <>
    wrote:

    >On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 17:21:10 GMT, in rec.photo.digital CommanderDave
    ><> wrote:
    >
    >>My dad was a professional photographer and we discussed the
    >>reciprocity rule when I was first playing around with my brand new
    >>Minolta 101. Whew! 35 years ago! Well in any case he suggested I set
    >>my camera up on a tripod and take a series of pictures of this flower.
    >>So I did and sent them off to be developed. When I got them back,
    >>they were all exposed correctly. Dad asked me what else I noticed
    >>about the pictures. Of course the more inportant lesson that my dad
    >>was pointing out is what happened to the depth of field as I changed
    >>the F stop.

    >
    >True, but as I also stated in an earlier reply, that depth of field change
    >is much much smaller with the extremely short focal lengths found in
    >compact cameras such as the CP-995. The only see way to achieve it with
    >such cameras is at full telephoto, or even better with the use of an add-on
    >teleconverter. As can bee seen here:
    >http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Macro/reduced/pages/DSCN2939_JPG.htm
    >http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Tele/3x/reduced/pages/DSCN7520_JPG.htm
    >Taken with a CP-990 and TC3.
    >----------
    >Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    >See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    >http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html


    Hello Ed,

    First let me say, I'm just getting my feet wet with digital. I have
    had an Olympus 460Z for 4-5 years, which is basically a point and
    shoot. I have gotten some good pics with it, and have had a couple
    print out to 8x10 with very good results. I have decided to get a new
    camera and have pretty much decided on the D70 as you have. When I get
    that camera in my hands, then it will be time to experiment again.

    I did notice the short range of F stops with your 990.
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Nikon/nikon_cp990.asp

    My 52mm Minolta lens went from f1.4 to f22 if I remember correctly.
    How much does that play into the depth of field comparisons?
     
    CommanderDave, Apr 23, 2005
    #16
  17. Stuart Noble

    Ed Ruf Guest

    On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 18:37:56 GMT, in rec.photo.digital CommanderDave
    >I did notice the short range of F stops with your 990.
    >http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Nikon/nikon_cp990.asp
    >
    >My 52mm Minolta lens went from f1.4 to f22 if I remember correctly.
    >How much does that play into the depth of field comparisons?


    It's the other way around. It's difficult to get a short depth of field
    with compact digicams. This is normally down with wide apertures. The
    problem with compact digicams is even at their widest openings the actual
    aperture size is still very small, due to the small size of the lens and
    their real focal length. while in 35mm equiv it's 38-115mm, it is actually
    an 8-24mm lens, so even at f/2.5 it's still a very small aperture giving a
    very wide depth of field.
    ----------
    Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 ()
    See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index.html
     
    Ed Ruf, Apr 23, 2005
    #17
  18. Stuart Noble

    Stuart Noble Guest

    "Scott W" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > As for what shutter speed you will need a tripod, the best thing to do
    > is try a bunch of shots and get a feel for it. When zoomed out you can
    > use a long shutter time and when zoomed in less. Using the optical view
    > finder will help hold the camera steady.
    >
    > There is a neat trick you can do with the 995, when put in timer mode
    > you can get a 3 second time, rather then the normal 10. You will have
    > to look in the manual but I believe you do two pushes of the shutter
    > button, when in timer mode, to get the shorter time. This is very
    > useful when using a tripode as three seconds will give the camera time
    > to get stable.
    >
    > Make sure you have the current firmware in the camera, go to Nikon's
    > site to check. The older firmware did a bad job of WB in incandescent
    > lights.


    Yep. That's something I did manage to do.
    Many thanks to all who have replied to the original post. Plenty to work
    on
    for a beginner.
    As for these
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Macro/reduced/pages/DSCN2
    939_JPG.htm
    http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/CP_990/Tele/3x/reduced/pages/DSC
    N7520_JPG.htm
    well, one day..........


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    Stuart Noble, Apr 23, 2005
    #18
  19. Stuart Noble

    Frank ess Guest

    Stuart Noble wrote:
    > "All Things Mopar" <> wrote in message
    > news:Xns96415BAA09BDCReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    >> John DH commented courteously...
    >>
    >> [snip]
    >>> http://members.lycos.co.uk/RobertSlade/Photo/manual.html
    >>> http://www.silverlight.co.uk/tutorials/toc.html takes it

    >> a
    >>
    >> Just lurking here, but I wanted to thank you for the two
    >> excellent web site links.

    >
    > Agreed.
    > What I can't get my head round is whether, if the aperture on your
    > camera was non-adjustable, you could vary exposure with just the
    > shutter speed. Or vice versa for that matter.
    > What I love about digital cameras is that you can try things out for
    > free. I suffer from a complaint whereby, as soon as I try to read
    > anything about fractions and f stops, my brain goes out of focus, so
    > it's a good way to learn.


    I know the feeling. At the moment I am blocking the location of the
    switch that allows links to work in OE Win XP SP2.

    --
    Frank ess
     
    Frank ess, Apr 23, 2005
    #19
  20. Stuart Noble

    DM Guest

    Stuart,

    > Having recently acquired a Coolpix 995, and being new to photography, I
    > have some questions that I hope won't be too dumb.


    When you're starting out there are no 'dumb' questions (far better to use
    others experience and get on taking better pictures!)

    > At what shutter speed is a tripod a necessity?


    There is no simple answer to this as it depends on how steady your hand is.
    Also, you can learn techniques (stance, breathing) that help. However, as a
    rough guide below 1/60th sec you are probably going to struggle. A good test
    is to go out at night and set the camera to Tv then photograph some distant
    street lights. Alter the Tv and shoot again. At lower speeds the lights will
    faithfully 'trace out' any camera shake. The results will show at what speed
    YOU can actually hand hold the camera.

    Also, before resorting to a tripod there are other accessories (e.g. bean
    bags) that can help in getting a steady shot.

    > Do you always need a remote lead? In other words, is it the pushing of the
    > button that causes the shake?


    Pressing the button can be one of the causes of camera shake & therefore a
    cable release is often a good idea

    > On auto bracketing, the camera always seems to vary the shutter speed and
    > not the aperture. Is that the preferred method of controlling exposure?


    As I tend to shoot in Av mode most of the time (i.e. I fix the aperture) it
    would be for me. If you're shooting in 'Auto' then the handbook will often
    descibe what decisions the camera will make under different conditions.

    > I've tried varying aperture and shutter speed separately and, although I
    > can see a difference, it's difficult to say exactly what it is.


    A wide aperture (small f# e.g. 2.8) will help throw the background out of
    focus and help emphasise the main subject. A narrow aperture (f16 etc.) will
    help in get everything in focus. Try a portrait shot of someone stood 3m
    from the camera with some trees/shrubs say 20-30m behind them. Using Av mode
    take a shot at f2.6 (which I think is the max aperture of your lens at it's
    wide end) and then set the f22 and shoot the same picture. The first should
    have the person in focus & the shrubs nicely out of focus whereas the second
    should have eveything in focus.


    > So far, apart from adjusting white balance, the auto settings give me the
    > best pictures, but are there known situations where the camera's choice is
    > likely to not be the best?


    Once you get used to the depth of field effects described above you will
    probably want to use Av mode most of the time unless you are shooting moving
    subjects when Tv may be more valuable.

    > Thanks in advance for any advice. If it's a case of reading the manual,
    > feel free to say so :)


    It never hurts to read the manual (several times - even when you've owned
    the camera awhile there's bits you forget)

    Regards

    DM
     
    DM, Apr 24, 2005
    #20
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