Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > Newbie Help

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Apr 1, 2011, 8:40 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default 70mm-300mm vr zoom lens

I just got my first dslr (d90) camera two weeks ago. It was a kit that came w/ 2 lenses. The 18-55mm and the 70-300mm. I'm attending my daughters fashion show that is held in her schools gym. I was going to take the 70-300mm lens. I'm not sure if I need to use the hood that came w/ it? Also, do I use a filter to protect the lens? I bought a uv filter that the sales lady said I should use.

The manual is overwhelming. Any tips or settings I should try in this environment would be greatly appreciated. I've only played w/ Auto, A, and around the dial pre-sets.

Thank You
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Apr 1, 2011, 9:33 AM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Staten Island, NY
Posts: 41
Default

Which 70-300 did you get? Does it have VR?

You should always use a hood to protect the lens. The hood also reduces flare. Leave off the UV filter. First, the D90 won’t respond to UV light, so it isn’t necessary. Second, filters degrade image quality, so they should only be used when their benefit outweighs their disadvantage.

When you’re new to a camera and to photography, and you’re about to take pictures that count, your best bet is to go with the Green Auto mode...also referred to as the “Point-and-Shoot” modes (see page 34 of the manual.) I have no idea what the lighting will be like (maybe dark with a lit runway?) so it’s difficult to give advice. So my advice is this...at this point the camera knows more about photography than you do...let it make the decisions. During a discussion over at another forum, more than one courageous shooter admitted to use the auto mode with flash when he knew he needed flash, but couldn’t quite figure out the lighting.

Review page 36 of the manual to check out your available settings. The one setting that’s not there, and can make all the difference, is ISO. You should start with Auto ISO. Read page 74 on how to change ISO. I can tell you right now that the camera will be shooting at ISO 800...it must if the built-in flash is going to have any reach. You’ll need to be within 14 ft. of the models if you expect the flash to light anything up. Page 266 of your manual lists the ranges for various combinations of aperture and ISO. If you’re 20 ft. from the models then you’re going to have to switch to ISO 1600, and if you’re 28 ft. away, then ISO 3200. The built-in flash is pretty weak. An SB-600 or SB-700 flash unit will let you shoot at ISO 800 and be 50 ft. away.

Try to use your 70-300 first, and if you’re not getting the framing you want then try the 18-55. Check out fashion shots on the Internet...pay particular attention to the height that the camera must have been at to take the shots. Ask your daughter about the stage and seating arrangements...maybe you can get yourself an ideal location if you ask for it.
Graystar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2011, 11:57 AM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default

Great advice. Thanks for the page numbers.

Yes, it has VR.

I have another general question. In Auto I'm dissapointed in the color quality. It appears gray and dull. My little point and shoot takes brighter pictures. Why the difference?
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2011, 1:42 PM   #4
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Staten Island, NY
Posts: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett K View Post
Great advice. Thanks for the page numbers.

Yes, it has VR.

I have another general question. In Auto I'm dissapointed in the color quality. It appears gray and dull. My little point and shoot takes brighter pictures. Why the difference?
The VR version of the 70-300 is better than the older version, so that’s good.

The Green Auto mode tends to boost colors a small amount...images should not be gray and dull. The only time the images will appear gray and dull in the camera is if you have selected a color space of Adobe RGB (see page 167.) Internally, the D90 is not color managed. So what does that mean?

Well, this is digital so numbers are used to represent colors, right? The camera offers two color spaces...sRGB and Adobe RGB. For the current discussion, all you need to know is that the same shade of, say, a dark red will have one number in sRGB, but a different number in Adobe RGB, even though it’s the same color. When displaying colors on the LCD, the camera only knows about sRGB, so the Adobe RGB colors are interpreted incorrectly.

This can happen on your computer as well. ViewNX, the software that came with the D90, should always display the images correctly. But other software might get the colors wrong if you select Adobe RGB. Adobe RGB is for advanced users, so check the setting and make sure it’s on sRGB.

If that’s not the problem, then you’re simply used to seeing the heavy color boost that compact cameras apply to images. The D90 has something called the Picture Control. This allows you to change the look of your image. There is a PC called Vivid that will give you that boosted-color look. Unfortunately, if you’re shooting in Auto mode then you can’t change the PC (you’re stuck on Standard, which still boosts the colors a small amount.) You will have to shoot in the RAW format and then select the Vivid PC in ViewNX for the images. That’s a pain.

To be able to select the Vivid PC in the camera, you can shoot in P mode with Auto ISO. This is almost as good as using the Auto mode, and might possibly be better for you in this situation, as you can set the Auto ISO to cover your full range of ISOes and not worry about it. Read page 166 of the manual on setting Auto ISO. You want to set a “Maximum sensitivity” of 3200. The “ISO sensitivity” should be 200. The shutter speed setting doesn’t matter when using flash. Also, read up about Picture Controls on page 108 of the manual.

The problem with P mode is that now, other functions are under your control as well. Make sure White Balance is set to Auto when using flash...the color of the flash is used to determine white balance (no, that’s NOT what the “Flash” white balance setting is for...set it to Auto.) Make sure your Exposure Compensation is set to 0. Make sure your Flash Exposure Compensation is set to 0. Make sure you are NOT using SLOW, REAR, or Red-eye on the flash. Make sure bracketing is turned off (if it’s on you likely did it accidentally while trying to pop the flash.) Set the metering mode to Matrix (though shouldn’t matter too much with flash.) Make sure you’re in AF-A focus mode. Models will be moving so use Dynamic Area AF. Center your focus point and lock it. Are you getting all this?

Good luck on the shoot.

Last edited by Graystar; Apr 1, 2011 at 1:46 PM.
Graystar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2011, 9:22 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default

This is a huge help. It will take me a bit to digest the info. I'm going to work on it tonight and practice shooting tomorrw. The students have a practice tomorow so I can give it a test before Sun.

Thank you for your time and expertise!
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2011, 4:46 PM   #6
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default

This was a great exersice to know my camera better. I made all the changes you suggested. All seems to look good. The settings gave the picture the wake up color it needed.

Two questions.

When using your suggested settings there is no flash going off. I don't think I need one. Just want to make sure I didn't miss anything.

Also, when I tried to take a pic. of my daughter and her friend together side by side they were blury. I assume it's b/c of the dynamic area setting. So would I just switch to green Auto or go through menu to Auto-area.

Much fun...

Thanks again
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2011, 7:21 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Staten Island, NY
Posts: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett K View Post
This was a great exersice to know my camera better. I made all the changes you suggested. All seems to look good. The settings gave the picture the wake up color it needed.

Two questions.

When using your suggested settings there is no flash going off. I don't think I need one. Just want to make sure I didn't miss anything.
In the green auto mode the flash pops up when the camera thinks you need it. When you're in P, S, A, or M mode then you must pop the flash yourself if you want to use it. There is a flash symbol in the viewfinder display, all the way to the right (lightning bolt arrow...see page 9 of the manual.) This indicator will blink if the camera thinks you need to use the flash (also, if the flash is up then it blinks when the flash is charging.) If you really don't care for the camera's opinion on the subject, you can turn off the indicator with the custom setting d11:Flash Warning on page 183 (that's what I do because I know when I want and don't want to use flash.)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett K View Post
Also, when I tried to take a pic. of my daughter and her friend together side by side they were blury. I assume it's b/c of the dynamic area setting. So would I just switch to green Auto or go through menu to Auto-area. Thanks again
It's not the AF-area mode...it's the fact that the focus point wasn't on the subject. Certainly, using the Auto AF-area is one way to solve the problem. The camera recognizes and gives priority to human faces and should lock in on any faces in the frame This also helps with metering.

Despite these nice features, photographers usually prefer to control exactly what point the camera will try to focus on, and will stick to one of the other AF-area modes. In Dynamic AF-area, you would simply move your selected focus point. Unlock the 4-way controller and move the selected focus point to one of the subjects. That will give you correct focus.
Graystar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2011, 11:12 AM   #8
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default

Okay, I'm hanging w/ ya. This is all making sense. T minus 1 1/2 hrs. lol

One last question if I may? The F stop? I see I can change this. Do I want the lowest wich is giving me around a 5. Also, I have the lens in M/A. This is what I want too??
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2011, 12:07 PM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Staten Island, NY
Posts: 41
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brett K View Post
Okay, I'm hanging w/ ya. This is all making sense. T minus 1 1/2 hrs. lol

One last question if I may? The F stop? I see I can change this. Do I want the lowest wich is giving me around a 5. Also, I have the lens in M/A. This is what I want too??

Yes, you must use the smallest F-number. If you shoot in P mode, you don't have to worry about this. If you shoot in A mode, then just zoom to 70mm, set it as small as you can (f/4.5) and don't mess with it. And yes, you want the lens in M\A...that's the Auto Focus mode.

Remember to check your distance...you can't be too far away to use the flash. Have fun!
Graystar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2011, 5:45 PM   #10
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 13
Default

Well at least I tried! I need to download the images and take a look. However, looking at the images on the lcd screen I noticed "flashlight eyes". Let me settle in and I'll check back w/ questions I'm sure! Thanks again for your time and help.
Brett K is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 8:54 PM.