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Old Jun 24, 2010, 9:04 AM   #11
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You have received some very good information on a range of topics. Wanting to photograph your two girls as they grow-up would be made much easier with the addition of a good external flash which would allow you to better manage your lighting.

Sarah Joyce
I totally agree! ... an external flash is a must with growing children ... forget my earlier suggestion because I didn't read that you already got the 55-200mm lens ... instead invest in a Nikon Speedlight SB-600 or SB-800 flash and it will serve you well for many years to come even when hou decide to upgrade to a newer Nikon DSLR
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Old Jun 24, 2010, 9:55 PM   #12
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Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I appreciate all of your help and replies to my post. I am going to stop comparing and try to figure out how to use the camera with all of it's features. I think I am just a little overwhelmed not knowing much about DSLR cameras. I will defiinitely check youtube and look into a class at a college in my area. I am off of work for the summer so I have some spare time (well as much spare time as I can get having a 6 year old and a 9 month old that has just started crawling and pulling herself up on everything.) :-)

Thank you again for all the suggestions and help. This forum is awesome!
Rachel
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 12:42 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post
RD-

You have received some very good information on a range of topics. Wanting to photograph your two girls as they grow-up would be made much easier with the addition of a good external flash which would allow you to better manage your lighting.

.

Sarah Joyce
Why is that ? (as apposed to the built in unit)
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 12:47 PM   #14
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The buillt in flash has the effective range of about 9 feet and is somewhat marginal at that. The external flash will allow you, shoot longer shots, bounce for a more natural look and with a diffuser manage the redeye problems.
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 2:08 PM   #15
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Why is that ? (as apposed to the built in unit)
Built in flash does not cover the same distance, slower, uneven lighting during group shots, casts shadow when using bigger lens with lenshood whereas external flash gives you the additional height to avoid lens shadows, red eye ... also much more powerful, faster flash recycle time (time taken betwen firing 2 flash shots), wider coverage, bounce flash etc etc etc
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 2:16 PM   #16
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I think I am just a little overwhelmed not knowing much about DSLR cameras.
Rachel
Here is some good news ... all the overwhelming features of your DSLR/Lenes are just machines which don't change, whereas your skill will only get better as you use.
Happy shooting
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 8:12 PM   #17
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The buillt in flash has the effective range of about 9 feet and is somewhat marginal at that.
This is not accurate, but can serve as an opportunity to educate newbies about guide numbers. The power of the D5000 is reported in terms of guide number. What is that? Well, expressed in feet, the guide number for the D5000, when set to ISO 200, is 56. This number needs to be divided by the aperture that you set your lens to. Using the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, you could set your aperture to as little as 3.5. Dividing the guide number 56 by 3.5 gives you 16. So the longest reach of the built-in flash using the kit lens at its short focal length would be 16 feet. If you wanted to use the kit lens at its long reach for some reason, you would have a maximum aperture of 5.6. Dividing 56/5.6 gives 10. So, at the long end of the kit lens, the built in flash would only be good up to 10 feet. If you switched lenses to, say, the 35 mm f/1.8, the maximum reach of the built-in flash would be over 30 feet.

Flash reach is reported in guide numbers typically because its reach varies with ISO and aperture size. Without specifying those variables, it is meaningless to talk about the reach of any flash unit. FWIW

Last edited by tclune; Jun 25, 2010 at 8:26 PM.
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Old Jun 25, 2010, 10:17 PM   #18
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This is not accurate, but can serve as an opportunity to educate newbies about guide numbers. The power of the D5000 is reported in terms of guide number. What is that? Well, expressed in feet, the guide number for the D5000, when set to ISO 200, is 56. This number needs to be divided by the aperture that you set your lens to. Using the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, you could set your aperture to as little as 3.5. Dividing the guide number 56 by 3.5 gives you 16. So the longest reach of the built-in flash using the kit lens at its short focal length would be 16 feet. If you wanted to use the kit lens at its long reach for some reason, you would have a maximum aperture of 5.6. Dividing 56/5.6 gives 10. So, at the long end of the kit lens, the built in flash would only be good up to 10 feet. If you switched lenses to, say, the 35 mm f/1.8, the maximum reach of the built-in flash would be over 30 feet.
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Flash reach is reported in guide numbers typically because its reach varies with ISO and aperture size. Without specifying those variables, it is meaningless to talk about the reach of any flash unit. FWIW
Good post. Simple, clear and concise...
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Old Jun 26, 2010, 6:39 AM   #19
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Good post. Simple, clear and concise...
Thanks. Let me muddy it up just a tad by mentioning how ISO changes things. This is a tiny bit harder, but quite useful to know. If your guide number is reported for a given ISO, you can calculate the guide number for a different ISO by dividing the desired ISO by the ISO given, taking the square root of the result, and multiplying the given guide number by that. For example, given a guide number of 56 at ISO 200, the guide number for ISO 400 would be: 400/200 = 2, the square root of 2 is roughly 1.4, and 1.4*56 is about 78. So the guide number at ISO 400 would be 78. At ISO 100, the guide number would be 100/200, or 0.5 square root of 0.5 = approx. 0.7, and 0.7*56 is approximately 39.

An easy way to remember the effect of ISO on guide numbers is that doubling the ISO gives an EV of +1, halving the ISO gives an EV of -1. FWIW
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Old Jun 27, 2010, 7:45 PM   #20
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The other "first thing" to do with the D5000 is go into the menu system and make sure the file numbering sequence is 'on'. Nikon's apparent defaulty is 'off' (at least on my D40 and D90) which rersets the file # back to zero after transfer. With set "off" you run the risk of overwriting (irrecoverable) prior files with the same numbered file name. Particular problem is Nikon transfer is set to transfer into a single directory (which may be default) tather than creating new sub-directories. Would suggest changinging that set-up option too, so it creates a subdirectory with each transfer, unless you override, wanting the additional photos in the prior created directory.

I know I lost a few that way. Also, I was in a camera store and overheard a lady getting the bad news.

Last edited by tizeye; Jun 27, 2010 at 7:49 PM.
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