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Old Aug 25, 2005, 10:11 AM   #1
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I tried using my new Rebel XT in (at night) Landscape and Night Portrait Auto Mode and it was slow at shooting and felt that the buttons where getting stuck. The pictures came out blurred and bad. The camera works well in the Portrait and Close Up (daytime) I also use the rectangle (full Auto mode and its ok)

Did I do anything wrong with the Landscape or NIght Portrait?? Or is there something wrong with the camera.

Also I erased my memory card and it says now 260 available shots. I am sure that when I first used it it said 300????

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Old Aug 25, 2005, 10:48 AM   #2
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Sounds like you are not using the camera in the right way for the situation.

Shooting in low light or dark situations will mean than the camera needs more light to properly expose the shot. This will normally mean a longer shutter speed.

When using longer shutter speeds any camera movement while the shutter is open will cause blur on your pictures. You must keep the camera perfectly still and in many cases the use of a tripod will be necessary.

Try shooting again in both the daytime and the dark using the P mode and see what settings the camera chooses for shutter speed.

The reason the green recatangle mode works is probably because the camera is automatically firing the flash to keep shutter speed high in the darkened conditions.

I don't think there's anything wrong with your camera.

Have a search on the internet for cmaera techniques and read all you can about f-stops - shutter speeds and you should get a good grasp of the basics. Remember google is your friend
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Old Aug 25, 2005, 1:40 PM   #3
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So you are saying I should use the P mode if I don't have a tripod at night? What about the daytime. Should it be in P in the daytime or auto rectangle? I understand that the flash won't go off it its in P. So won't lanscape photos come out too dark?? If I take people at night should I also use P but I won't get a blurry background?

Will not be using a tripod going away tomorrow and would like to have a quick lesson if possible.

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Old Aug 25, 2005, 3:28 PM   #4
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Eh? I think you might have misunderstood something before. The main cause will probably be your lens limitation. It's not really suited for dark, non-flash situations.

Imagine you're taking a shot now in the that dark-landscape situation you mentioned before. The "stream" of light that can enter the lens is limited. It's like a kitchen sink; no matter how much you open a faucet there's a maxium amount of water that can come out in a given time.

Say you're trying to fill a glass with water, and it'll take you 5 seconds to fill the glass up. Apply this to photography. In order to get a nicely lit picture (or simply fill up a glass with enough light), you need to have a stream of light coming in for say... 1/15 sec.

That's slow. And if you're holding the camera, you're going to cause shake, which causes the blurred motions. The only way you can reduce the blur is to lower the shutter, but you'll darken the picture.

Unfortunately, you're going to have to learn how to use the creative modes (such as P) in order to deal with ISO. ISO is the camera's sensitivity to light. The higher the ISO is, the more sensitive the sensor will get. You cannot access these functions in the basic modes.

My suggestion is to switch to Tv mode (so you can pick a fast shutter that won't blur the picture) and increase the ISO to 800 (try 1600 if it's still too dark)

As for what shutter times. It depends. But basically, if you're taking static objects (like a landscape) have the shutter set to 1/focal length. For example, if you have it at 18mm, make the shutter at 1/20 sec . If it's 55mm, have it at 1/60. This will NOT work if you take pictures of subjects in motion (like a bird flying).

A tripod would help (or some type of object that you can rest the camera on), but I also don't really like carrying one around.

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Old Aug 25, 2005, 10:21 PM   #5
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Pleaseadvice, you simply can't take night landscapes without using some method of keeping the camera still such as a tripod. The shutter has to stay open far too long to get enough light to expose the picture and in this time, if you are holding the camera, it WILL move and blur your picture. There is no camera/lens in the world that can get around this.
THe best you can do is to select ISO1600 (can't do this in an auto mode) and use an image stabilizing lens like the 17-85IS. This will still cause noisy (speckled) pictures.
Better to put your camera on a table/wall/tripod so it stays still. Even better to use a remote shutter release so pushing the button doesn't cause movement either.
The flash is useless for night landscapes as it can only illuminate things that are close to you, though it is ok for close shots and portraits. A fast lens like the 50mm f1.8 will allow you to take night portraits without flash unless its really dark.
You can fire the flash in P mode by pushing the flash button on the front of your camera. THe flash will pop up and then fire automatically. You can change the aperture (for blurry backgrounds) in P mode by rotating the dial behind the shutter button. Watch the aperture and exposure values change in the viewfinder as you do this.
Hope this helps.
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