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Old Dec 26, 2013, 11:14 AM   #1
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Default photographing lights at night (FZ150)

I've been trying to photograph some of the local Chistmas light displays, and they always turn out blurry, the lights that is. The surroundings seem ok. I've tried most of the settings I can think of, except for a long explosure.
Is there something obvious I should be doing?
.... john
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Old Dec 26, 2013, 11:36 AM   #2
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Any kind of photo at night will, to a great extend, be a few greatly overexposed point light sources surrounded by a vast, greatly underexposed area. Cameras' exposure systems generally work very well for reflected light (usually from the Sun, but occasionally from a flash or two), but not so well from direct light. So relying entirely on the autoexposure system for a properly exposed image of point light sources will be problematic.

What you see as "blurry" is probably the point light sources being overexposed and oversaturated. I would suggest adjusting the exposure compensation to get the lights better, but that will probably underexpose the surroundings (even more than they are already.)
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Old Dec 26, 2013, 2:28 PM   #3
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G'day John

As TC says - it's har to get it 'perfect'

You can try several things tho ...
1- camera on tripod & in "S" mode & iso-400
2- try 4sec then 1-sec then 1/4-sec and see what you get

3- camera hand-held & "S" mode & iso-3200
4- try 1/4-sec then 1/15-sec then 1/60-sec and see how it turns out

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Old Dec 27, 2013, 6:55 PM   #4
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Hi TCav/Phil,
The S Mode was a good idea. The results were a significant improvement over previous attempts. 1 second looks like the best exposure time. Oddly enough, 4 seconds was nearly identical, except for a slight increase in brightness of the lights.
..... john
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