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Old Nov 16, 2005, 2:44 PM   #1
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I take many school pictures of teams playing in our school gym. When I turn the flash on, the pictures turn out too yellow. When I turn the flash off, the shutter speed is too slow and everything is blurry. I have tried shooting in continuous mode don't have much better luck. I am using a canon proshot1. I don't know a lot about photography itself, pretty much what I read in the manual. Does anyone know how to get around thisor what settings I need to set the camera at? Thanks in advance.
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Old Nov 16, 2005, 8:58 PM   #2
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Set your ISO (sensitivity) to the highest setting (like ISO1600 or ISO3200).

Then shoot shutter speed priority, 1/250th of a second.

Hopefully, your lens aperture will be wide open.

Then cross your fingers.

What kind of camera are you using?

-- Terry
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Old Nov 17, 2005, 3:08 AM   #3
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The yellow cast is due to an incorrect white balance setting. Are you shooting Auto WB? If you set the WB to something cooler (like incandescent) you might get better results. If you can do a custom WB that would probably be even better. Check your manual to see if that can be done.
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Old Nov 17, 2005, 5:34 AM   #4
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rologuth wrote:
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I take many school pictures of teams playing in our school gym. When I turn the flash on, the pictures turn out too yellow.
What this means is the flash on the camera is not powerful enough: Electronic flash is balanced to approximate daytime light, i.e. if enough lighting had come from the flash then the color should have been balanced already and not yellow...
-> You need a more powerful external flash! :idea:

A flash burst is very fast in the order of thousandth of a second or less and will stop any moving subject on its track - What you're seing is the effect of ambient light of the gym instead, which is "semi"(see explanation below) continuous and will be affected by slower shutter speed

Also doing a white balance to an arc type gym light is a moot point because its color varies at a 60Hz duty cycle due to the on/off sinusoid nature of the AC line - At higher shutter speeds, i.e. above 1/60s you're only capturing a spectrum of this light which may not be the same as the next one you shoot at.... :O
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Old Nov 17, 2005, 10:46 AM   #5
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See here: http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=54



rologuth did say he used a Canon Powershot Pro1 - and the built-in flash is kind of limited:

From Steve's review
1.0 – 3.5 m (3.3 – 11.5 ft.) (T)
(When sensitivity is set to ISO 100 equivalent.)

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Old Nov 17, 2005, 1:19 PM   #6
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I don't know your camera, it might have an option to select white balance settings. See the manual for correct white balance settings that correspond with your flash.

Most picture editing software is able to correct these yellow pictures, often in one simple step that requires no skills. The results can be magic. I've seen pictures from someone who had made a huge mistake with his camera settings, all his pictures showed red people with red hair, red clothes in a red room with red furniture. After One step photo fix in Paintshop Pro they all looked perfect.
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Old Nov 17, 2005, 3:37 PM   #7
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Not exactly sure what a "canon proshot1" is, but if you have a PowerShot Pro 1 you are likely just exceeding the capabilities and flash range of the camera.

I have yet to encounter a camera that doesn't set the white balance correctly for flash shots when left on auto WB. Zoomed out you have an 11.5 foot flash range at ISO100, which is probably the default ISO for flash shots since the range is given at ISO100. Your flash shots probably appear yellow because you are shooting out of range. One of the disadvantages listed by dpreview of the Pro1 is that the artificial light WB is poor and you don't have any WB fine tuning. Shooting out of range of the flash often results in poor WB with any camera in artificial light.

If you just want snapshot sized pictures you can crank the ISO up to 400 and extend your telephoto flash range to around 23 feet. The pictures will be noisy at ISO 400, so you can't crop a lot or blow them up much, but you will get useable flash shots if you can get within about 25 feet of the action you are trying to shoot. You will extend your range out to about 30 feet or so in wide angle with ISO400, but most people don't shoot sports it wide angle.

By the time your shutter speed gets to reciprocal of the focal length the lens is wide open and the camera is giving you all of the shutter speed it can. There is no magic manual setting to overcome the fact that the camera doesn't have enough light to freeze action other than crank your ISO up to 400. The shots will be even noisier than the in-range flash shots at ISO 400, but you could possibly get decent snapshots.

Your best solution is a decent flash attachment. I have a Vivitar 285HV. It has a zoom head and quite a bit of power for an under $100 flash. At ISO 100 it will reach out over 50 feet in telephoto with the head zoomed.. It is a bit bulky and flash units that are not dedicated TTL units require the reading of the flash manual and a little effort for the initial setup. But once you understand the settings you don't have to mess with the settings during shooting unless you change the parameters a lot. A Canon dedicated flash would be pricier to get the kind of power and range you get with the 285HV, but easier to use. The Sunpak 383 is also popular with the same power as the 285HV and more compact, but without the zoom head doesn't have quite the range in telephoto.

If you want to get sport action photos inside a gym you should invest in a decent flash unit. If you are interested in getting a good flash unit for your use you might start a thread on the Canon forum to see what others have had success with.

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Old Nov 18, 2005, 12:26 AM   #8
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rologuth wrote:
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I take many school pictures of teams playing in our school gym. When I turn the flash on, the pictures turn out too yellow. When I turn the flash off, the shutter speed is too slow and everything is blurry.
When using flash, your camera is automatically setting the White Balance to the color temperature of the flash, which is very close to daylight. Indoor lighting tends to be more yellow, and that is why you are seeing the color cast.

If pictures are not too blurry when using flash, it means either the flash is stopping the action, or the shutter speed is high enough. With a yellow cast, it indicates the flash is not stopping the motion, but the camera is selecting a higher shutter speed to go with the flash.

What all this means, is that you need to learn how to use the camera in either full manual, or in shutter priority mode. I am not familiar with this camera, so can't help much with how to set it up. Try setting shutter speed to 1/250 s, and see what happens. You may find it is all you need to do.

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Old Nov 22, 2005, 12:34 PM   #9
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thanks everyone for your input. I have learned a lot in the past week just reading posts on here. I am in the process of experimenting with your suggestions.
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