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Old Nov 29, 2004, 9:42 PM   #11
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I agree with newbeX What does it do for me? I just ordered one and now I would like someone to tell what to do with it if possible. My Alien Bee 800 don't have different F-Stops on the slide bar how do I know what a F-11 is compared to a F-8 or anything else. Thanks for any info.

Chad
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 8:11 AM   #12
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The settings on your camera consistof three things:

Shutter speed, ISO (Sensitivity) of the Focal Plane, and F Stop (Opening in the lens that controls the amount of light reaching the focal plane).

When you use external flashes you lose control of the shutter speed. The Flash becomes your shutter when it fires and the flash only lasts 1/1000 - 1/100,000 of a second (controlled by the power setting).

This short amount of time is too short for you to see (OK you can see it but it is difficult to judge). Also your camera is not designed to detect the flash and use that as a metering value (which is why you need to be in manual mode).

You set the meter for the ISO to match your camera (for DSLR usually you use ISO 100 or 200 for low noise). Fire the flash and the meter gives you an instant reading of what F Stop matches the lights. The shutter is set to 1/60 or 1/125 typically (it opens, flash fires, it closes).

The F Stop of the camera is set to match what depth of field you want in your picture (higher gives a bigger DOF)you then adjust the power of thelights to match this number.

--------------------------
Normal setup using a flash meter:

Set the meter to what ISO you are shooting at, use the dome(or diffuser) on the meter. Plug the cable (or transmitter) into the flash meter

1)Put the meter under the chin of the subject (yes it really is like in the movies for once).:-) Aim at the main flash then fire the flash and adust the power to match the ISO/fstop you want to fire at.

2) Now aim at thefill flash and repeat but set the fill to 1 or two stops less

The list is as follows (One stop increments)

1.4 - 2 - 2.8 - 4 - 5.6 - 8 - 11 - 16 - 22


3) Shoot your picture.

---------------------------------------------------

If you change the distance to the subject of the lights. Repeat the above steps.

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Old Nov 30, 2004, 11:34 AM   #13
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Thank you so much CastleDude for that last post I learned so much from it. I keep reading it over and over. Now I just wish my flash meter would hurry up and get here. I will be practicing more tonight. One question for shooting in a studio should I leave my white balance on auto or switch it something different?

Thank you,

Chad
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 12:29 PM   #14
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AWB will work usually unless your ambient lights are strange (fluorescent, etc)

Flash or Sunlight are the next choices up.

A custom white balance is best (use a grey card). You can also shoot through the top of a Pringles can (sounds strange but it does work). The commercial equivalent is the expodisc.

For just starting outgrab something you know and put it into the shot then you can have itnear the computer and do the adjustment then. I use a Kodak color card like my avitar shows (about $20). But about anything can be used. The ultimate is the MacBeth cardbut these run $80-$300.
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 2:00 PM   #15
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I found that an Amazon.com packing slip is the perfect green color to set your white balance for warm images.
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 2:20 PM   #16
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Another reason why this site is the best. One guy asks a question, we all get to benefit. Just too good...Best regards,

KennethD
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 6:55 PM   #17
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Wow..that was awesome CastleDude...thank you. That helped a lot!!!
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 8:43 PM   #18
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Hello all,

I'm at home practicing now with my D70 can anyone give me an idea or a ballpark figure of were I should have my shutter speed for hand held shots. I'm just looking for a starting point. Thank you,

Chad
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 8:52 PM   #19
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cdteo wrote:
Quote:
Hello all,

I'm at home practicing now with my D70 can anyone give me an idea or a ballpark figure of were I should have my shutter speed for hand held shots. I'm just looking for a starting point. Thank you,

Chad
Not from me, LOL. I went from a Canon D30/DSLR to a Minolta A1 because my hand-holding blows!
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Old Nov 30, 2004, 9:13 PM   #20
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Are you using the strobes?
  • if so, the shutter speed must be your cameras sync speed or slower and the flash duration (around 1/10000sec or faster)becomes your shutter speed. [/*]
  • if not, minimum recommended hand holding shutter speed is 1 over focal length [/*]
  • See Kalypso's response above, and use a tripod, without strobes or a fast shutter speed handholding is not easy to get sharp images [/*]
cdteo wrote:
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Hello all,

I'm at home practicing now with my D70 can anyone give me an idea or a ballpark figure of were I should have my shutter speed for hand held shots. I'm just looking for a starting point. Thank you,

Chad
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