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Old May 7, 2003, 12:00 AM   #1
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Default Coolpix 5700 and Product Photos

I need to take some photos of products to be used on the web. I like the photos that are presented here of the Coolpix 5700 and expect to shoot the products on a white background.

Can anyone recommend some specific products that I would need?

I considered the SB-80DX but suspect I may need something else to reduce the shadow effect.

I'm a newbie so please be specific.

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Erez
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Old May 7, 2003, 6:19 PM   #2
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I would not suggest a shot mounted flash. First and best thing you can do it move the flash off the camera. Next is to make it bigger. Use a small flash head and you'll have essentially a point source of light and hard edged shadows. Umbrellas and softboxes turn a strobe into a big light source with soft, feathered shadows.

As for specifics what kind of products are you shooting? Cars? Jewelry? In between? I'm guessing tabletop stuff. For that I use a 160ws monolight with a large (36"x48") softbox overhead on a boom stand. That's a few bucks more than a shoe mounted flash. How much of a budget do you have?
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Old May 7, 2003, 8:34 PM   #3
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For small object shooting only, I would not invest in expensive studio lighting system . I am thinking about 2 relatively cheap setups possible:
1) some fluorescent light at different angle
2) 2 or more small slave flashes using some kind of reflector to diffuse light , the picnic kind dishes do this job very well .

Of course, getting moonlights and umbrellas may give you the mood to do portrait as well ...
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Old May 12, 2003, 11:44 AM   #4
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You need to decide to use dedicated hot shoe flash or studio system flash. If you intend to use the SB-80 DX flash, first at all you will need to get the flash off of the camera. To utilize all the TTL functions of the flash, you will need the TTL cord. To reduce the unwanted shadow, First you need somekind of light defuser like a softbox, so you can get quality solf light through your flash (check flash acessories for Nikon flash, like Sto-fen products), then you will need two flashes, one to use as key light, and the other one will function as fill light for that purpose. I f you want to go with one flash, you need a reflector, white or silver, howver you will not be able to remove the shadow completely. This method help you to maintain the TTL/wireless flash fucntions with Nikon flash which easily control by camera setting.

You you want to set up a studio flash system, you can start with two lights, same as the above, accept in this case, you can go as cheap as two slave/strobes or all the way two monolights, two umbrellas, PC synchro cord and two light stands (first flash connect with camera via synchro cord, the second one via built in slave). You must also need a flash meter to help you to determine the correct exposure. You can add more lights later when you feel comfortable with the system later on.

Happy shooting.
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Old May 12, 2003, 9:05 PM   #5
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Thanks guys... I'll try implementing the multiple techniques. My first attempt at using the SB80DX off camera on a tripod with 2 'flood' lights yielded decent results, however, the white background is coming out off white. Any recommendations on lights I should use to make it more 'white'? Thanks again! I appreciate the help.



Best Regards,
Erez
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Old May 17, 2003, 11:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erezwolf
Thanks guys... I'll try implementing the multiple techniques. My first attempt at using the SB80DX off camera on a tripod with 2 'flood' lights yielded decent results, however, the white background is coming out off white. Any recommendations on lights I should use to make it more 'white'? Thanks again! I appreciate the help.
Before you move to multiple SB80DX with light modifiers (e.g., umbrella, softbox, reflectors, snoot, etc), consider the cost first. Then, consider the convenience factor. The 5700 has a minimum aperture of F8.0. When multiple flashes are being used, the intensity may require the have an aperture smaller than F8.0 (e.g., F11), which is impossible. Of course, one can use ND filters to reduce the light or set light ratio on each flash. Umbrellas are usually OK and could produce very good results. In general, a closer flash-subject distance yields a better (i.e., softer) result. However, at such a short distance, the intensity of a SB80DX must be reduced to 1/4 or even 1/8. Due to these reasons, I am slowly moving to the Starlite system. I feel I have more control and can see the result and setup lighting more accurately. I started with two medium Starlites and may move to three or four. Give it a try!

CK
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Old Sep 4, 2003, 10:57 PM   #7
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I am having problems getting shots to come out good using the 5700 and the following:

Two (2) Studio BY-240SD Strobes at 36 WS each;

One (1) Pro Studio BY-120E Strobe at 120WS (Watt Second) with 50 Watt modeling light;

One (1) 20" X 28" (with silver reflect inside) Softbox with framework;

Two (2) 34"Umbrellas (silver reflect umbrellas)

Two (2) Bi-Pin Halogen modeling Lamps for the BY-120E strobe.

One (1) Wireless Transmitter (Infrared Remote Slave Trigger)

I amd shooting toys on a blue background (seamless paper) and am very much a newbie... everything I shoot is overexposed. I have no idea how to really position these either. I was told I also need to purchase a flash meter but wow, they are expensize! Any suggestions would be greatful.
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Old Sep 6, 2003, 12:48 PM   #8
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Anyone? Anyone?
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Old Sep 13, 2003, 5:17 PM   #9
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If you join this yahoo group, in the files section you will find several pdf files on studio lighting. I think these will help you. Try link below:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Canon-10D/files/
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Old Sep 20, 2003, 2:42 PM   #10
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Thanks for the reply. I read over a lot of things but still cannot get crisp photos. I am using the coolpix 5700 and 2 umbrella strobes. I am still unsure if I have the settings right. I did end up buying a flash meter but still learning it as well. I have all new to the "manual" photography world. I think the thing I am not sure about is when I pop the flash to get a reading, the f stop # lights up 1/3. From my reading, this equals 1 stop? So do I set it 1 stop higher?

Here are the test pictures:

http://www.sirstevesguide.com/images/misc/test.jpg
http://www.sirstevesguide.com/images/misc/test_cu.jpg
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