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Old Jan 14, 2005, 6:16 PM   #1
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Hello everyone. I just have a few questions. I know that indoor concert photos are difficult and that there is no one way to shoot a indoor concert but I thought that some generalsuggestions may help.

I'm using a D70 with the 18-70 f/3.5 outfit lense. The lense doesn't let a lot of light in so I need some advice on how I could compensate for this. I'm thinking that using a ISO of 500-800 may be to grainy. Flash may be aloud for a little while but not the whole time.

The location is just a small town bar that is doing a benefit concert for schools in Katmandu, Nepal that are unwealthy. This isn't very important the people and Ijust wanted to see if I would be able to get a few good shots so we could send them to the schools in Nepal. I'm not getting paid and don't expect to since this would be great experience

Any suggestions with ISO, setting, metering, and WB would help out alot.

Thanx

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Old Jan 14, 2005, 7:25 PM   #2
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Well... I have very little experience taking photos in clubs without a flash. But, I think the best idea would probably be to buy a brighter lens. You can pick up a 50mm f/1.8 for under $100.00 from most dealers in the states, and then use your feet for zoom.

At an EV of 6 (typical for normally lit interiors), at f/4.0 (the largest aperture at around mid-zoom on the kit lens) and ISO 800, shutter speeds would only be at around 1/30 second for proper exposure. This is likely going to be too slow to get many keepers without motion blur. So, you'd need to shoot at ISO 1600 to get shutter speeds up to 1/60 (which is still going to be borderline).

If lighting levels are lower than that (and they may be in the club you're shooting in), then your chance of getting keepers will be even lower.

So, if you can spare the money for a brighter lens, you may want to look into this option. An f/1.8 lens would let you shoot at shutter speeds about 5 times as fast as your kit lens (depending on how much zoom you used with the kit lens) for any given lighting condition and ISO speed. Just keep in mind that depth of field will be shallower at larger aperture settings.

If a new lens is not an option, you may want to consider shooting in RAW -- underexposing by a stop or two if needed to get shutter speeds fast enough to prevent motion blur -- depending on the lighting. Then, use a popular tool like Neat Image, Noise Ninja or Noiseware to clean it up as best as possible later.


If you can visit the bar ahead of time with your camera and take some test shots, you'll have an idea of what to expect. Hopefully, the lighting will be much better than I think it will be. ;-)

If you can use a flash, and stay within the flash range -- problem solved (but the ambience of the lighting will be impacted by the stronger flash).



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Old Jan 14, 2005, 7:39 PM   #3
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I like the sound of taking RAW images and cleaning them up. Since I'm only doing this for the experience, and probably only once or twice, I'm a little tight on the budget to get any lense right now. Thanks for your tips .
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Old Jan 14, 2005, 7:47 PM   #4
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Well, hopefully the lighting will be better than expected. If you stay closer to full wide angle with the kit lens, using your feet for zoom, you'll be able to get faster shutter speeds, too (since more light reaches the sensor through that lens at it's wide angle setting).

If you do need to use higher ISO speeds (and you probably will), and don't already have a good noise reduction program, check out the free "community edition"of Noiseware. It's a stand alone program, only works with 8 bit files, and strips out the EXIF from images -- but, it does a pretty darn good job at reducing the appearance of noise while retaining as much detail as possible.

You'll see the free "Community Edition"at the bottom of the downloads (underneath the more advanced commercial versions):

http://www.imagenomic.com


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Old Jan 14, 2005, 9:12 PM   #5
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How well do you think neat image works for reducing noise? I'll be able to get close so I think I'll be able to use wide zoom.
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Old Jan 14, 2005, 9:27 PM   #6
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Most users think Neat Image is the best (but I've personally been impressed with how well Noiseware works, too).

Chances are, you're going to need to shoot at ISO 1600 if you can't use a flash to keep shutter speeds fast enough to reducemotion blur. So, you'llwant something to reduce the noise later. ;-)

Perhaps I'm wrong, and light will be better than expected (but I wouldn't count on it).

If light is lower than anticipated, you may even need to underexpose (the easiest way would probably be to shoot in Av Mode, selecting the largest aperture (smallest f/stop number), then set Exposure Compensation to a -EV valueas needed for faster shutter speeds.

But, I wouldn't go this route unless needed (because noise will be even worse on an underexposed image -- just as if you used an evenhigher ISO speed).

Chances are, ISO 1600 would do it. I'd take some test shots when you get there, and see what your shutter speeds are.You'll probably want to keep them at 1/60 second or fasterto reduce the number of shots with motion blur -- taking lots of photos to increase the number of keepers (since this won't be fast enough to freeze action if they are moving much).

Added: I'd make sure to take some at slower shutter speeds and lower ISO speedsanyway. If you catch some shots when they're reasonable still (and you're holding the camera steady and squeezing the shutter button to reduce motion blur from camera shake), you may get some better ones this way with lower noise.


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Old Jan 14, 2005, 10:48 PM   #7
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Thanks for the helpful tips.
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