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Old Oct 25, 2004, 3:31 PM   #11
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I know this is probably not the right solution for you, but I was going to purcahse a 550EX or a Sigma 500 DG Super. I ended up buying an Alien Bee AB800 with stand, umbrella, strobe, and carrying bag for $349.00. I loved it so much I ended up buying two.When I compare how much money I was going to spend on on-camera flashes I think I got a deal. I will never go bacxk to on camera flash.

I have a Vagabon Battery system on order and will be able to easily shoot group shots indoors or out...






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Old Oct 25, 2004, 4:12 PM   #12
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JohnG wrote:
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...Why is shooting in Tv with ETTL a bad thing when using the flash? What does having both the camera AND the flash in manual buy you - over say having just the flash in manual? Just trying to learn from everyone else.
1. Shooting in Tv with E-TTL will not let you control the aperture -> in case you need to control the DOF.

2. E-TTL is an evaluative system based on the AF points... depending on where the camera focuses -> you can end up with overexposure if the AF sensor lands on a dark spot, or underexposure if the AF sensor lands on a bright area. The 10D and dRebel do not take the distance information into consideration. http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...42&forum_id=37

3. Shooting with the camera on manual will let you control both the shutter and the aperture while the flash is still on automatic E-TTL. The difference here is the exposure is not based on the AF points area anymore, but rather on a center-weight averaging -> more consistent exposure!

4. Shooting with both the camera and the flash on manual will allow you total control of the exposure -> you determine what it is and not the camera
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Old Oct 25, 2004, 4:57 PM   #13
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You can rent strobes at many camera stores. Calumet rents their Travelite strobes for the whole weekend for the price of one days rental if you get it on Friday.

I have a Canon 420EX on my Canon Digital Rebel. I use it in open areas, in other words I would not have everyone stand against a white wall because then you will get dark shadows behind everybody on the top row. You will need some sort of diffuser to spread and soften the light which will reduce your power.

A trick I learned is to point your camera at something far away and dark. Press and hold the FEL lock button. Your camera will do a preflash set for a distant object. This will make you flash fire at full power. If you have a white wall behind the group your picture may come out dark because the Flash will read the light reflectioncomming back from the wall as well as the people. A dark color behind or open space behind I think will make the people look brighter.
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Old Oct 25, 2004, 9:47 PM   #14
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minutephotos

When you press FEL (*) the camera metering is changed to partial, almost a spot within 9% of the viewfinder screen. This works the same in both ambient and flash mode on both the 10D or dRebel -> I prefer this mode over the centerweighted metering of the camera/flash on manual.

In the FEL (*) spot metering mode of the flash, the brightness (or darkness) of the wall behind the subject has no effect on the center 9% area of the subject being metered, ie the subject exposure will come out correct!

* see the Function Availability Table on page 122 of your 300D manual (*With AE lock)
... or page 100 of the 10D manual.
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 12:34 AM   #15
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Man - this is getting interesting. To minutephotos.com - Awesome pix with the Alien Bees! Was that like just the units or with Umbrellas???

When I used the White wall, I was all the way across the room & we "juiced up" the overhead lightsdirectly above them. Another note - I tried some candid pix of my girlfriend & her Best friend since 1st Grade, whileat the dinner table & they almost sucked! I also did some pix of them with her A80 & they blew the 300D pix away! Of course, I can Brighten the 300D images with my computer. I think my 300D/420EX would have worked MUCH better, but like a dummy I kept it on my EOS-3 for only 6 shots. Hmmmm . . . .

OK NHL - if I don't shoot in TV Mode which is what I use ALL the time when outdoors on ALL of my Canons & get really Great results, what mode do you recommend while indoors with external flash? And, one last thing - I was at a friend's restaurant the other day & after lunch I brought in my 300D with the 20-35 Canon & left the 420 in the car & just for the heck of it took a closeup of him & 2 of his waitresses using only the on-board flash & the camera in TV Mode & it looked really great! I was surprised!
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 7:33 AM   #16
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NHL,

Just trying to absorb all your wisdom :roll:

If I understand there are two ways to get better flash exposure.

1. (your prefered) - use FEL. When you use this, is the metering the same regardless of mode (Tv vs. Av vs P)? Also, should you 'aim' central focus point for a certain part of the image when pressing the FEL button or just aim at the center?

2. Use Manual mode, which in addition to allowing control of both aperture and shutter will also switch things over to center weighted metering rather than using the focus points.

Is this correct? All of this is extremely useful as I am going to a wedding in a couple weeks and it will be the first time using my new flash in a large hall with poor lighting (reception hall). I especially like the idea of using the FEL since many of the shots will be more candid and I don't want to have to mess with using manual mode (still a novice and working one or the other is enough for me right now when shooting people :-))

Thanks very much for your help.
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 8:20 AM   #17
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JohnG wrote:
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1. (your prefered) - use FEL. When you use this, is the metering the same regardless of mode (Tv vs. Av vs P)? Also, should you 'aim' central focus point for a certain part of the image when pressing the FEL button or just aim at the center?
Yes the 'partial' metering is the same for P, Tv, Av and A-Dep (check the table on page 122 of your dRebel) when you hit the FEL button. It's default is the 'Evaluative' based on the problematic randomness of the AF sensors. When on spot, aim at a neutral area (such as a face), don't aim for area of brightness (wedding dress) or low-key (tuxedo) or you're asking for trouble just like the AF sensors...



Quote:
2. Use Manual mode, which in addition to allowing control of both aperture and shutter will also switch things over to center weighted metering rather than using the focus points.
Again check page 122: The default is 'centerweighted' on manual, which you can also overide to 'partial' metering with the FEL button!



Quote:
Is this correct? All of this is extremely useful as I am going to a wedding in a couple weeks and it will be the first time using my new flash in a large hall with poor lighting (reception hall). I especially like the idea of using the FEL since many of the shots will be more candid and I don't want to have to mess with using manual mode (still a novice and working one or the other is enough for me right now when shooting people :-))
YES, you have now the power of control over your flash
... not that candid! Each time you press FEL, the camera shoot a pre-flash measurement :?
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 10:49 AM   #18
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To John G. Going to the wedding - advice from me (although I don't do weddings, but have several friends who do). TAKE ALONG AN ASSISTANT! You will need someone to help you. And Good luck!
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Old Oct 26, 2004, 12:09 PM   #19
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Thanks for the advice, but I do not want to mislead - I am only a guest. My photographs are for my personal use. I am not crazy enough :?to take photos in an official capacity (I've read enough of the warning posts to know better) :G

I just know from past experience that wedding receptions are where many digicams and internal flashes start to fall short. These are exactly the situations I bought an external flash for and want to make sure the photos come out right!
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Old Oct 27, 2004, 3:49 AM   #20
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Quote:
Was that like just the units or with Umbrellas???
shot wastaken using the umbrella's a 32" and a 36". I am thinking of getting larger photogrnec umbrella's (any advice welcome).

My first wedding I was scared to go manual and shot the whote thing on AUTO. Since then I forced my self to always shoot manual. Now I have more contol and know more closely what results I will be

I was forced to figure out the FEL issue on myDRebel specifically to make it not pre-fire. Before I had wireless triggers I was using Canon 420EX to trigger the Aileen Bees.The 420EX pre-flash was making bees fire at the wrong time. By point my camera at the floor and pressing and holding FEL I could now take shots with no pre-flash.

Difference is my exposure is set by strobes not 420EX. If 420ex is your only light source this will probaly technique will probablythrough off your exposure and E-ttl settings.

The shot below is completely unedited. This is how it came directly off camera using sekonic l358, two AB800's, Joesauction wireles striggers and EF 55-200 lens.

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