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How does DSC_0625 look to you?
underexposed 50%  50%  [ 4 ]
just right 38%  38%  [ 3 ]
overexposed 13%  13%  [ 1 ]
Total votes : 8
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2007 8:08 pm 
I thought I'd start a fresh thread for this as it's a pretty serious concern to know-nothing D80 users like me :shock: !

Elsewhere Thomas wrote of his D80 set up which I think is identical to mine, 'I leave everything at factory default and shoot at fully auto or aperture-priority. I never experienced overexposure, and never lost any highlights in my pics'.

Oh dear!

This means either I'm doing something fundamentally wrong with my camera (this is very likely!) or the matrix meter on Thomas' D80 works better than mine...in which case I want a word with Nikon!

Let me stress, I AM a complete beginner, so it could be that I have unrealistic expectations of what the camera can do in bright conditions, or even that I don't know a 'correct' exposure when I see one, or I'm doing something dumb.

To illustrate the problems I'm experiencing I've put 6 sample images here, 3 with -0.7 EV and 3 just as Mr Nikon intended. At this point I was shooting in P mode. As I've said elsewhere, I have now knocked this on the head and tend to shoot in manual as I find it the easiest way to overcome what you will see below....

http://www.flickr.com/photos/7930206@N03/?saved=1

To save you the trouble of going through the 'more properties' link I've noted the main info for each shot in comments below each pic..apologies if I've noted anything down wrong.

I'd be really interested in fellow Nikon users' comments and experience. As I say, I'm learning so forgive me in advance if it's something obvious!

Cheers
Tony


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2007 8:30 pm 
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Well, DSC_0437 is clearly overexposed, I don't think my camery would have done this.
DSC_0615 is overexposed at the womens top, but not much. The RGB-Histogram shows quite a nice distribution of all tones.
But I would call DSC_0625 also slightly underexposed. Some of the dark hair and the shadows under the trees is below 5 (on a scale from 0..255). My assumption would be at -0.5EV. Unfortunately though both pics in the garden are not comparable.

From the settings, I detected some differences:
Colour Mode: you: MODE3a / me: 1a
Image optimisation: you: CUSTOM / me: Normal
Saturation: you: ENHANCED / me: Auto
Saturation: you: High saturation / me: Auto

So mabe these deiffernces can explain some of the different outcomes...

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 7:41 pm 
Hmmm, thanks for that Thomas.

I don't think I have a way of viewing the histograms of the images once they're out of the camera. You don't happen to know of a way of viewing this (without having to buy software) do you? I think it would help me to analyse the exposures much better.

Cheers
tony


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2007 9:08 pm 
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I do with CaptureNX, but you can always load a pic back into your D80 and use the built in histogram function.

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Last edited by Thomas on Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 9:37 am 
http://www.nikonians.org/cgi-bin/dcforu ... e=threaded


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 11:38 am 
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For the record, my D80 tends to over-expose using matrix-metering too. I take mainly landscapes and to get around this 'problem' I tend to use centre-weighted metering. I keep most of the optimization settings on normal except for sharpness which I usually turn up one notch. I almost always use aperture-priority.

When I do use matrix metering I set it to under-expose by 1 full stop. Usually works out fine.

Where's that building?

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:35 pm 
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Still the judgment is out whether DSC_0625 is a little underexposed for something that is in full sun.
Post you vote (at the beginning of the thread)!

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:50 pm 
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It looks just right to me. If it was my image I might be tempted to lighten the right-hand side but that would just be my preference. Otherwise I think it's pretty much bang-on.

Zorro.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 3:56 pm 
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I've downloaded the image, loaded it into Lightroom and produced a histogram. Here it is:

Image

I had my mouse in the highlight recovery area of the histogram which can be seen on the right hand side. It looks like the photo is ever so slightly over exposed.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2007 4:53 pm 
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It looks like this from within CaptureNX:
Image
Interestingly CaptureNX shows some red lights between 200 and 235. But normally it is a clear indicator that the image is underexposed, when the main color body lies below 200.
If you look at the full image here: http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1109/570 ... bbae_o.jpg
you can see on the left side which parts of the image lie over the threshold of 210.
When I'm shooting under these conditions I have always some highlights at/over 250. If you call that overexposure, then so be it...

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:13 pm 
Blimey, a poll! :shock:

First of all, thanks to everyone for going to the trouble to comment / analyse the piccie in question....

...however, I don't think whether 0625 is over, under or just right is really the point!

My concern was that my D80 has a tendency to over-expose in matrix mode. The images that are taken at 0 EV are the ones that will show this, or not.

I think everyone agrees at least one of the examples I've given (there were a lot more, but I trashed them in camera as soon as I played them back) is definitely over exposed.

It would seem that the D80's perceived overeposure in matrix mode is a global isuue (thanks Zorro, Antman).

That's fair enough. I can work round it if I feel the need. My concern was that I had a 'bad copy' of a D80, or I was doing something wrong. I don't think I do /am (at least as far as metering is concerned!).

Thanks again for all your feedback

Cheers

Tony


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:30 pm 
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Everything's fine with your D80. Don't worry about it.

I was out today and took loads of shots with 1 stop under-exposure dialled in using matrix metering and they came out pretty much perfect. It's just something you get used to. No two cars drive the same yet someone who can drive one will be able to drive another, with a period of acclimatization.

Or maybe that's nonsense. :wink:

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2007 9:42 pm 
Agreed! :wink:


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2007 10:21 pm 
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Agreed on "nonsense", or what :twisted:

But don't forget that different monitors make for different impressions (see the thread here: http://www.cameralabs.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=352)
So maybe, just maybe, your monitor is bleaching colors out a bit...
I'd judge the quality of exposure by the histogram of the D80. If it normally shows some color clipping at the high end, you've certainly some copy of the D80 that's overexposing. Me, I never had any problem. When clipping occured it was in well defined situations, where the main subject was very good exposed.

And again consider the non factory default settings that you use!

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 4:25 am 
Ken Rockwell had same problem :)

"I set my exposure compensation to -0.7 because my D80's metering firmware is defective. It usually overexposes.

Set -0.7 by holding the +/- button we just used for reset and turning the rear dial two clicks to the right.

Sadly we'll often have to adjust this depending on the subject. It's no big deal: just look at the image on the LCD and click it towards the left (+) to lighten the image, and to the right (-) to darken it for the next shot. This is why I prefer my D200, which has a superior meter because it rarely needs any fiddling. "


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