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 Post subject: Low lighting question
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 6:00 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2011 2:13 am
Posts: 17
Hello All,

I attended my cousin's wedding this past weekend and when I was at the reception dinner it was rather poorly lit. I was in Aperture Priority mode but the camera had a hard time focusing. I had a 50mm lens on my D7000 (I know I need more lenses) but would an external flash helped out more than the pop up flash on my camera along with a lens capable of 2.8 aperture?

Thanks in advance.

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Nikon D7100
Nikkor 24-70mm/f2.8, Nikkor 35mm/f1.8, Nikkor 50mm/f1.8, Nikkor 70-200mm/f2.8 VR II, Sigma 8-16mm/f4.5-5.6, Tamron 80-210mm/f4.5-5.6, SB-900
On the list 14-24mm/f2.8, 24mm/f1.4, 28mm/f1.8, 85mm/f1.4, 105mm/f2.8, 400mm/f2.8, Nikon FX Camera Body
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 6:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 5:02 pm
Posts: 294
Location: Illinois, United States
Any external flash is better than the one your camera is fitted with. So yes, it definitely would have helped and if you plan on doing more weddings I would definitely invest in one!

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Jason

Just a new guy learning his way

Film: Olympus XA2
Digital: Nikon D3100 w/SB-600: , Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G, Tokina 12-24MM F4 Pro II


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 8:31 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 12:33 pm
Posts: 442
Location: St. John's, NL, Canada
In addition to Daden's comments, I'd like to add some thoughts. What were you focusing on exactly? The focus system on DSLR's work by "hunting" the focus back and forth until it finds a fine line on the focus point. In a dark room there is lots of black, so what would normally be "fine lines" in light, would just look like a black wall to the camera and thus it wouldn't find anything to judge weather or not its in focus. A trick would be to focus (push shutter release half way) on a object (that is equidistant from you and your subject) that has fine lines (pillar, candle, light). then reframe the photo, and then take the photo (fully push the shutter release).

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Trevor Harris

Nikon D200
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YN-560 II
YN RF 603 x 4
Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8
Nikon Series E 50mm f/1.8
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2011 6:03 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 8:57 am
Posts: 1551
Location: Winterpeg, Manisnowba, Canada
One focusing tip is to use the AF assist illumination (the bright light on the front that flashes, if yours is turned off you can turn it on through the menu), assuming that it's not too bright, or even bring along a flashlight with you. That should help the camera focus nicely. If that fails, a good trick is to use live view. A few months back I shot a dinner as well, the lighting was terrible! Our table's light was actually burnt out, so lighting was a challenge. I actually ended up mounting on my old 50mm f/2 AI-S lens and manual focusing with Live View, assuming that you can keep the camera steady enough, you can even use the zoom feature to get an even more precise focus.

Regarding flash, it's always good to invest in one. The pop-up flash on your D7000 gives a disgusting, harsh, reflective light that's very unappealing. When you invest in a flash, you get much more power to light more, you can bounce the flash off walls and ceilings for a more natural light, or even buy a mini softbox to soften the flash's light. You should take a look at Nikon's new SB-700, an excellent high-quality flash, or if you're on a budget you could probably pick up a second hand SB-600 anywhere from $180-$220.

By the way, you don't need more lenses, you WANT more lenses. Of course, there's no such thing as too many lenses! :)

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-Evan

Gear: 7 Nikon Nikkor AI-S and AF-S lenses, SB-700 flash, Nikon D7000, Nikon FM, variety of accessories

"There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs."
- Ansel Adams


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2011 7:28 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 13, 2009 10:57 am
Posts: 129
Location: Sydney, Australia
If you get a flash like the SB-600 or better, it has an AF-assist IR lamp/grid/projection thing. It works wonders in difficult situations, and its a lot less noticeable than the bright af-assist lamp built into the body.

Large aperture lenses also AF in low light, but if your camera was having trouble at f/1.8, not much more can be done there.

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ยป Nikon D90 | Nikon D7000 + MB-D11 | Nikon 18-55mm VR | Nikon 17-55 f2.8 | Nikon 80-200 f2.8D | Nikon 35mm f1.8 | Nikon 50mm F1.4 | Sigma 85mm f1.4 | Nikon SB-600 | Think Tank UD-60


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