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Old Jul 25, 2006, 6:32 AM   #1
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Hi all

I finally got to try out my H1 at an air show, Farnborough Air show.

It was a lot trickier than I expected.

I managed to get some wonderful shots of the slower aircraft, like the Airbus A380, and after some practice some nice shots of fighters, although it was a struggle to be able to select the best zoom and focus fast enough to get sharp shots of those.

I ended up with about 10 acceptable fighter shot, and at least 50 blurred squibs, but I will put that down to just needing more experience.

I also got some very nice shots of the helicopters, but I hate the blades looking so static in the final results.

I spoke to some professional photographers near where I stood and they suggested reducing the shutter speed from 1000th to 60th in order to getthe desired effect of movement, but this is where I become very frustrated........

When using 60th the helicopters just seamed to vanish from the sky,like they did not even exist, and even if I was able to focus on one it would appear to just keep fading into nothing, so in the end I gave up and just excepted that I would have to live with solid looking rotors.

My main complaints would be;

1.Slower shutter speeds appeared to be useless.

2. Once I have focused on a faster moving aircraft and hit the shutter button, a small delaybetweenhitting the shutter and the shot being taken meant thatmost of thedesired shots I wantedwere never taken, and so the final results were never what I wanted.

Conclusion: any good shots were pretty much flukes I think.

I really hope someone can point out where I went wrong, because I really want to make this camera work!!

Many thanks for reading.

Shane


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Old Jul 29, 2006, 5:34 PM   #2
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You need an SLR for these kind of shots. Reasons: a proper viewfinder that lets you see the aircraft coming from miles away, not lost in the pixels of an electronic finder, and just about zero shutter lag. Forget sharp helicopters with blurred blades, the two requirements are just not compatible. The simple facts are that unless you want movies, small size and absolutely the lowest prices, DSLRs at £375 make the Sony H range redundant for your kind of photography.
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 10:45 PM   #3
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Perhaps its the actual time to getfocus (half press of shutter release) you have the problem with, not with the already focused, pressed shutter fully and waiting for click time ...

Once you are actually focused on an object then shutter lag is timed at 0.01s (8 times faster than the Canon S2 or S3 !)

You could try the Canon S2 or S3 if you want, they in general (when they can actually get a focus ) do so faster than the Sony H series..


You could also try focusing on an object on the horizon or the other side of the airfield (aka infinity..), go to manual focus, that will lock the focus at infinity, and then just fully press the shutter release when the subject is in view.

Some people that take getting birds in flight and airplanes in flight seriously attach a red dot sight to their camera.

A little tricky for the H1 since there is no topmounted hot shoe so you can mount it off axis on a flash bracket ..

Similar to the Pany at

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...essage=9831684

By mounting the sight sidewards you may even be able to get it over the lens for a better centered view ..

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...p;changemode=1

As a quick method you could even superglue the sight to the Sony tube adapter, making sure it was properly aligned first though before it was set, I have the better pemaraal tube adapter so the Sony one can be used and abused !

Remember unless you have a very very fast dlsr you don't just point the camera at the fast moving plane hold the camera still and press the shutter and hope for the best, you would do better by tracking andkeeping the plane in the viewfinder/lcd or as mentioned above the red dot sight.

Takes a lot of practise butyour keeper percentage should goup..



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Old Jul 31, 2006, 4:27 AM   #4
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Thanks to both of youfor replying.

I have to say that I am a little upset now, especially as this camera was recommended by a few different people (unbiased recommendations) for just this sort of photography, with its fast zoom etc.


Quote:
You could try the Canon S2 or S3 if you want, they in general (when they can actually get a focus ) do so faster than the Sony H series..
Sounds like a great idea, but back on earth I don't have the kind of crash to chop and change cameras.

I made my choice after spending hours in thisveryforum and getting the information that this camera is up to the job, and so now I have the Sony H1!

Should I have had the focus area set as a dot rather than a small square (for want of the more technical word)?

Why do helicopters vanish in my view finder at 60th of second, but not at 1000th?, after all im still looking through the same view finder only with a faster shutter speed set!!

What's the big deal with getting blurred blades and a sharp helicopter? £300+ and all I have is acompact camera with zoom?? please don't let it be so:-?

Like I said before, hopefullyfast focus issue is something I just have to learn to master.

Sorry to sound a little short, but I really wanted to enjoy this camera, but it appears thatmy first leap from an oldcompact film camera to what I thought would be a state of the art do-it-all camera has justbeen an expensive mistake.


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Old Jul 31, 2006, 12:48 PM   #5
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You should be able to photograph aircraft with no problem with your H1, for jets and fast planesuse the highest shutter speed possible, to get props to blur by using a slower shutter speed you must pan when taking your shot.


Go to: http://www.jetphotos.net/and seach Sony H1 and you will find many examples.

This shot belowtaken withmySony DSC-F707.



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Old Aug 1, 2006, 3:51 AM   #6
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Thanks for the positive feedback Wirraway

I did get some good shots of the slower aircraft (I will post them when I get a chance), in fact I did get some good shots of the tornado at speed, butI was onlygetting one out of 20 good ones.

I hope to get better with experience.

What I still don't understand is

Quote:
Why do helicopters vanish in my view finder at 60th of second, but not at 1000th?, after all im still looking through the same view finder only with a faster shutter speed set!!
I was panning butthe aircraft kept becoming thinand thenvanishing from the viewfinder, this didnt happen on 1000th!


Are slow shutter speeds supposed to effect what you see in the finder like mine?

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Old Aug 1, 2006, 4:30 AM   #7
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I was panning butthe aircraft kept becoming thinand thenvanishing from the viewfinder

if I was able to focus on one it would appear to just keep fading into nothing

Could you explain exactly what you mean?

Do you have any examples / photos that would help explain what you mean ?
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Old Aug 1, 2006, 4:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
Could you explain exactly what you mean?
Ill try to make it clearer.

Using 1000th, I am able to easily track aircraft across the sky using the viewfinder or screen.

When I dropped to 60thall I could see was a sky with no aircraft when using the screen, but when using the eyepiece it was slightly better, in that I could just aboutmake outaircraft (in this case a helicopter), but even when fully zoomed the heli kept vanishing into thin air and all I could see was sky.

I kept dodging between 60th and 1000th to make sure I wasn't going mad, and sure enough the faster I made the shutter the more visible the heli's become.

I never got any shots in 60th because it was impossible to find anything in the sky.




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Old Aug 9, 2006, 6:49 AM   #9
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I guess there is no answer to that:-?
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Old Aug 16, 2006, 3:49 PM   #10
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The focus issue has been answered.Switch to manual focus and set it to infinity. I don'tknow about the U.K. but in the U.S.the aircraft are not permitted to get closed than 500 feet to the crowd in an airshow.This would be infinity on most, if not all,cameras.

The other answer is that in full daylight 1/60th is so slow there is not a small enough (high F number) aperature to take the picture. It is so overexposed that the image is simply washing out. This would be especially true if you went into manual mode to alter the shutter speed. If you did it this way the f stop would remain fixed at what it needed at 1/1000 sec.

You might try using manual mode and setting the aperature at the highest (smallest)available setting and then lowering the shutter speed in steps until you get to the point where it gets overexposed. The histogram will help with this. Also, make sure you are using the lowest ISO setting.
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