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ulik Feb 8, 2004 5:07 PM

Night/low light shooting

I've got a Fuji S602 camera and am satisfied with it except for the time when I have to make some night shots... I tried many tricks (tripod, shutter, external flash) but it still doesn't give me what I want. There is no problem with static shots - when I use tripod I always get beautiful pictures (landscapes for example). But when it comes to some movement at night - it's either out of focus or just blurred (when set to slower shutter). External flash works only for close ranges...

Is there a camera with similar features to S602 (I don't need more pixels, in fact I never shoot more than 3MP) but with greater low light shooting capabilities? I definitely need better focusing and ability to shoot sport events at night...

Any ideas/comments greatly appreciated.


voxmagna Feb 8, 2004 6:34 PM

You can push the ISO to 400 and use Neat Image noise reduction to clean up afterwards. ISO 800 to 1600 unfortunately drops the res. to 1Mpix. Ocasionally, I've used this in churches down the long aisle and been surprised with the results. If the new Fuji cams with higher Mpix (S3?) are still doing pixel combining, can you get 800/1600 and closer to 3Mpix? You'd have similar problems shooting indoor sports action with a film cam.

Many years ago I played with flash bulbs called PF 7's (I think), they were monsters full of magnesium like you see the press hacks using in the old movies! Today there are some electronic flashes with a longer reach that use lenses, and you can also get wireless flash slave units which can be put closer to the action if you know where it is and are allowed to. Fortunately the S602 has a hot shoe.

For low light indoors, you probably have to use exclusively manual settings for everything. You can push up the shutter a bit, accept some under exposure if the white balance is OK, and pull back the levels afterwards in editing. Again, noise reduction software will help clean up the pics. VOX

ulik Feb 9, 2004 3:05 AM

Thanks for the reply Vox! I'll think about getting a couple of wireless flash units...

I never played a lot with special noise reduction software, used photoshop instead. So it was a bit difficult to get clear and sharp picture with high ISO settings. The only way I know to reduce noise in photoshop is to blur the original image. I think noise reduction software works in the same way, doesn't it? I've heard of some software that actually compares pixels before blurring the image; in that case it would be possible to reduce noise without loosing sharpness. I'll give Neat Image a shot!

Any ideas regarding changing the camera? Will I get better results?

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