Want to buy a new digital camera to replace my Nikon 5700,..

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Hi, All.

Many of you are aware of the problems I've had getting
well-exposed, consistent exposed pictures when using
flash on my Nikon Coolpix 5700 with Sunpak's excellent
433D external when shooting cars in dark museum
settings. A few weeks ago, I bought a Nikon 8800 with
Nikon's SB-800 external, but results were even worse,
despite my best efforts, help from the camera store and
help on this NG. So, I returned it for a charge credit.

In a nutshell, I have no problems whatsoever in
daylight, but when I shoot car pictures in museums,
results vary considerably. About 1/3 are OK, another 1/3
are underexposed by 2 f/stops, while the rest are under
by 5-6 stops. I really don't want to get into another
long discussion about why I'm shooting flash and not
available light on a tripod, suffice that I want to.

I've long been enamored with EVF cameras because I could
see instantly if I did or did not get a decent exposure.
But, I'm being lobbied by the camera store and by others
that I'll /never/ get good flash with /any/ Nikon EVF
because their underlying flash exposure systems just
aren't up to the task. Maybe this is bunk or maybe
somebody's DSLR really is the best camera for me.

The camera most often recommended to me right now is
Canon's Digital Rebel XT with DIGIC II. My local store
recommends that I also buy Canon's Speedlite 550EX,
because it has the power I need and is fully adjustable
for EV. I'm not worried about buing a "pig in a poke"
because the store manager will give me a 10-day trial,
as he did with the Nikon 8800.

I'm looking for a recommendation for a new digital
camera, flash. 8 mega pixels is more than enough, I'll
actually be shooting at only 3 or 5 MP. I'm, of course,
interested in sharpness and low noise, which I would
normally expect in any camera in the price range of the
Canon Rebel XT.

I'm also looking for recommendations for a zoom lens for
the Rebel (or other EVF or DSLR) longer than the 28-85mm
equivalent that comes with the Rebel "kit". I'm looking
for something that is at least 35-150mm, preferably 28-
200mm equivalent.

Canon apparently has a wide angle-to-zoom lens to fit my
needs/wants but is pricey (sorry, I can't remember the
model number). I don't want to be "penny wise but dollar
foolish" and buy somebody else's glass, but would like
to get the best quality I can at a reasonable price (who
doesn't, right?)

I'll keep this post short for brevity but will gladly
answer any questions you may have to help guide me in my
quest. Thanks so much in advance.

--
ATM, aka Jerry
54 answers Last reply
More about want digital camera replace nikon 5700
  1. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "All Things Mopar" <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote in message
    news:Xns966BA4DC8B0B3ReplyToken@216.196.97.131...

    > I'm looking for a recommendation for a new digital
    > camera, flash. 8 mega pixels is more than enough, I'll
    > actually be shooting at only 3 or 5 MP. I'm, of course,
    > interested in sharpness and low noise, which I would
    > normally expect in any camera in the price range of the
    > Canon Rebel XT.
    >

    Actually, let me ask first & foremost--why buy an 8 megapixel camera if
    you're only going to be using 3 or 5 megapixels of it? You might as well
    save a lot of money & get a 3-megapixel camera in the first place. (I've
    never understood the point of buying a high-megapixel camera only to not use
    all of it, seems like a waste of money to me.) Think a used Nikon Coolpix
    990 or 995, they have an external flash connector; with proper adaptation,
    you could probably hook up all the Vivitar 283's or 285's you want and you'd
    have plenty of flash power.

    I don't know that EVF cameras would do any differently than D-SLR cameras.
    One thing about Nikon EVFs is that they don't have true TTL flash. They have
    a conventional flash sensor mounted in the built-in flash that does the
    metering, in that aspect they're like the old-time "classic auto" flashes
    where you used "blue" or "red" mode & the corresponding aperture--only with
    the Nikon you can use any aperture you please.

    The Canon Rebel XT would be fine, and the 550EX would have the power. One
    thing, though--the guy said the 550 was fully EV adjustable. Well the
    Digital Rebel XT has flash exposure compensation, so that doesn't matter.
    You could get the 420EX and still have the ability to vary your flash
    output.

    One last thing--a D-SLR would be hugely helpful if you shoot without
    flash--I know, you said you want flash, but if you find it too problematic
    getting enough flash power in such a huge setting, you might end up
    resorting to no-flash output. In that case, a D-SLR is hugely advantagoeus
    because of the much higher performance in high-ISO situations.

    LRH
  2. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    > The camera most often recommended to me right now is
    > Canon's Digital Rebel XT with DIGIC II. My local store
    > recommends that I also buy Canon's Speedlite 550EX,
    > because it has the power I need and is fully adjustable
    > for EV. I'm not worried about buing a "pig in a poke"
    > because the store manager will give me a 10-day trial,
    > as he did with the Nikon 8800.

    I have a 300D and a 550EX and think that the XT + 550EX would be a very good
    combo for you. What the heck; try them for 10 days!

    > I'm also looking for recommendations for a zoom lens for
    > the Rebel (or other EVF or DSLR) longer than the 28-85mm
    > equivalent that comes with the Rebel "kit". I'm looking
    > for something that is at least 35-150mm, preferably 28-
    > 200mm equivalent.

    Look at the Canon 75-300 IS lens. It's a good buy. Here is a shot taken
    with that lens and a 300D at full-zoom and hand-held from a moving tram ride
    in the Florida Everglades:
    http://home.comcast.net/~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/site1056.jpg
  3. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Charles Schuler commented courteously...

    > I have a 300D and a 550EX and think that the XT
    > + 550EX would be a very good combo for you.
    > What the heck; try them for 10 days!

    Thanks for the fast reply, Charles! I need to be a
    little circumspect here, though. I want to try to "do my
    homework" before going back to my local store with a
    lame "OK if I take another camera out for a test drive?"

    > Look at the Canon 75-300 IS lens. It's a good buy.

    I assume this is 75-300mm equivalent? What I'm after is
    something that goes to 35mm or better still 28mm
    equivalent at the wide end, and at least 150mm,
    preferably 200mm at the tele end. I really don't want to
    lug lenses with me.

    Is my need/want even feasible?

    > Here is a shot taken with that lens and a 300D at
    > full-zoom and hand-held from a moving tram ride in
    > the Florida Everglades:

    > http://home.comcast.net/
    ~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/sit
    > e1056.jpg

    Great bird shot, Charles! Do you by chance "know" Ron
    Lacey? He's also a terrific bird photographer.

    Have you had any experience in museum shooting? Doesn't
    necessarily need to be cars, although that's my first
    and nearly only love! Museums are always a challenge
    since the flash gets almost no help from ambient
    lighting and there're plenty of things that can "fool"
    the AE, particularly reflections off shiny car paint,
    the old wide WSW tires, etc.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  4. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    > I assume this is 75-300mm equivalent? What I'm after is
    > something that goes to 35mm or better still 28mm
    > equivalent at the wide end, and at least 150mm,
    > preferably 200mm at the tele end. I really don't want to
    > lug lenses with me.

    No, it's 1.6 x (equivalent) due to the smaller sensor in the 300D/350D/20D.
    I also have an EFS 17-85 (27-135 equivalent) that I can recommend for use
    with the 300D/350D/20D.

    > Is my need/want even feasible?

    Perhaps not.

    > Have you had any experience in museum shooting? Doesn't
    > necessarily need to be cars, although that's my first
    > and nearly only love! Museums are always a challenge
    > since the flash gets almost no help from ambient
    > lighting and there're plenty of things that can "fool"
    > the AE, particularly reflections off shiny car paint,
    > the old wide WSW tires, etc.

    Car museums allow flash photography whereas art museums do not (each, of
    course, sets their own rules). In those that do allow flash, a diffuser or
    the use of bounce flash is worth considering.
  5. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Charles Schuler commented courteously...

    > Car museums allow flash photography whereas art
    > museums do not (each, of course, sets their own
    rules).
    > In those that do allow flash, a diffuser or the use
    > of bounce flash is worth considering.

    Thanks again, Charles, but a diffuser won't help, as
    what I encounter is /deep/ underexposure. Likewise,
    bounch flash is infeasible as there isn't anything
    overhead to bounch off - ceilings typically 12-15 feet
    above the floor.

    The real question is whether a Canon XT with their flash
    is or is not likely to return well-exposed pictures of
    /anything/ in a museum environment.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  6. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Larry R Harrison Jr commented courteously...

    > Actually, let me ask first & foremost--why buy
    > an 8 megapixel camera if you're only going to be
    > using 3 or 5 megapixels of it?
    [snip]

    Thanks so much for the reply, Larry!

    The answer to your question is easy: I do /not/ want a
    P&S, I want an advanced amateur or "pro-sumer" camera
    with all the photometric bells and whistles, good glass,
    tight sensors, low noise, etc., etc., and have a budget
    of at least $1,400. The fact that I only want to shoot
    (today) at 3-5 MP isn't really the issue. My main
    interest, for the foreseeble future, is getting reliable
    flash exposures of cars in museums as well as excellent
    quality in daylight. The mega pixels I shoot at doesn't
    mean diddly when it comes to exposure capability.

    I know that many will dispute me, but for my purposes -
    screen display and /not/ large prints - more than 3 MP
    is just wasted CF card space. And, I see no need for RAW
    right now, even though I understand why it is
    advantageous.

    > I don't know that EVF cameras would do any differently
    > than D-SLR cameras. One thing about Nikon EVFs is
    > that they don't have true TTL flash. They have a
    > conventional flash sensor mounted in the built-in
    > flash that does the metering, in that aspect they're
    > like the old-time "classic auto" flashes where you
    > used "blue" or "red" mode & the corresponding aperture
    > --only with the Nikon you can use any aperture you
    please.

    This is true for the Coolpix 5700, but Nikon presumeably
    redesigned it's TTL for the 8800, calling it iTTL, which
    is why I bought that last month. Alas, it did not come
    close to doing the job!

    I posted a number of queries on this very subject whilst
    I still had the Nikon 8800 under trial. No one could
    explain what was going on, so I simply gave up and
    returned it. I don't know why an EVF vs. a DSLR could
    possibly make any difference, except if my store manager
    is right - and Nikon just can't make a flash TTL/AE
    system that works.

    > The Canon Rebel XT would be fine, and the 550EX
    > would have the power. One thing, though--the guy said
    > the 550 was fully EV adjustable. Well the Digital
    > Rebel XT has flash exposure compensation, so that
    > doesn't matter. You could get the 420EX and still
    > have the ability to vary your flash output.

    I asked about the 420EX at my local camera store. I know
    the manager, and I think he is a knowledgeable, reliable
    dude, albeit one with a sales target. It is /he/ that
    says the 420 isn't enough.

    Where, besides dprewview.com, would you suggest I
    investigate the various Canon flashes?

    >
    > One last thing--a D-SLR would be hugely helpful
    > if you shoot without flash--I know, you said you
    > want flash, but if you find it too problematic
    > getting enough flash power in such a huge setting,
    > you might end up resorting to no-flash output.
    > In that case, a D-SLR is hugely advantagoeus
    > because of the much higher performance in high-ISO
    > situations.

    Definitely! But, again, the problem is /not/ getting
    enough flash power - my Sunpak 433D has GN=120 and the
    Nikon SB-800 I used with the 8800 had GN=100. The
    problem was that the flash pulse was shutting down
    prematurely, underexposing the image.

    For brevity I didn't mention my year-2000 FujiFilm 4900,
    which did an outstanding job being it only had a small
    built-in speedlight. I also tested my wife's Kodak 6330
    ($150) and my daughter's Kokak 7000 ($200) - each
    performed flawlessly in the same museum shoots that both
    my Nikon 5700 and the 8800 failed so miserably at
    (within their flash range, of course).

    That's why I simply refuse to believe that competant
    pro-sumer cameras are incapable of good flash exposures,
    particularly when I set up very detailed, elaborate
    tests varying both camera and flash EV, ISO, metering
    modes, etc., for both my 5700 and 8800, but could /not/
    get good results.

    The camera store guy was willing to take back the 8800
    "no questions asked" because he'd predicted it would
    fail. Now, the $64,000 question is: Why?

    Thanks again for your insights.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  7. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "All Things Mopar" <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote in message
    news:Xns966BBAB73264EReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    >
    > I know that many will dispute me, but for my purposes -
    > screen display and /not/ large prints - more than 3 MP
    > is just wasted CF card space. And, I see no need for RAW
    > right now, even though I understand why it is
    > advantageous.

    I am stressing to be courteous here, but I am one of those people. Frankly,
    I don't think cameras should give even users the OPTION to shoot at lower
    resolutions. JPEG full-sized or RAW, that's it. If you don't need more than
    3 or 5 megapixels of resolution, it's a total waste of resources to buy that
    much & not use it. Sort of reminds me of those people who buy Corvettes and
    never go above 35 mph. I'm like--WHY!!

    I do apologize if I'm being a hard-one about that. CF card space is cheap,
    so is CD storage on your computer. If your CF card is at least 512
    megabytes, you can get over 150 or so photos even at Large/Fine JPEG.

    You never know what you may use the photo for. It could end up being
    published, or asked to be blown up if you're doing this for a client. In
    that case, 3 megapixels isn't going to cut it. If 5 is enough, then maybe
    the Canon EOS300D (the OLD Digital Rebel) should be considered as it shoots
    at 6 and is a bit cheaper than the new Digital Rebel XT.

    If you really want the SLR experience but no more than 3 megapixels, try
    finding a used Canon EOS D30. That's a 3.5 megpixel D-SLR which you can find
    used for almost nothing, right at $350. It would use any Canon flash like
    the 550 or 420, too.

    One other thing, too--if you go for any of the Canons and shoot in Av mode,
    be prepared--the Canons are weird in that they assume "slow sync flash" in
    Av mode--a characteristic I find peculiar. The other brands have "slow sync"
    as a particular mode you deliberately enter into--otherwise, it keeps the
    shutter speed near X-sync so you don't get blur. The Canons enter "slow
    sync" in Av and it can lead to blur. (Except for the "old" Digital Rebel
    without the Wasia hack, you can override this with a custom function.)

    LRH
  8. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:

    > Hi, All.
    >
    > Many of you are aware of the problems I've had getting
    > well-exposed, consistent exposed pictures when using
    > flash on my Nikon Coolpix 5700 with Sunpak's excellent
    > 433D external when shooting cars in dark museum
    > settings.


    Yep.

    Did you say you got good results with family's $200 digicams? Heh, why
    not do that then?

    I do think your expectations are unreasonable. Flash is awfully
    difficult to use effectively from what I see around here and doubly so
    for highly reflective subjects. For the kind of particular requirements
    you want, I don't think auto exposures on a small sensor camera with an
    on-camera flash are going to work.

    The advantage of a DSLR is the larger pixel size and ability to shoot in
    low light with high ISO. This is real. Outdoors in full sun you can get
    great shots with a smaller pixel camera but the ISO adjustment can make
    a big difference with a DSLR in low light.

    But don't think a DSLR is going to be easy and you are correct in
    worrying about needing a bunch of lenses for different situations
    because the whole system is bigger, the lenses are bigger & less
    adaptable than a small pixel camera. The kind of subject matter you are
    talking about is very difficult being very reflective you will have
    highlights from the flash blowing out and illumination simply will
    bounce off & be lost.

    Cars being rather large and three dimensional, depth of field is also a
    serious issue. If you got a fast lens you could still only get a narrow
    slice in focus which would only be capable of rather 'artsy' looking
    pictures like the front fender in focus & the rest a blurry mirage.

    I can only relate to folks talking about shooting small model cars &
    similar products like jewelery where it's common to build a tent of
    translucent fabric with big hot lights on all sides in order to get
    suitable illumination for a reflective subject like that. The equivalent
    for flash would be bouncing off the ceiling at relatively low 'fill'
    levels and boosting ISO to make use of the available light in reasonable
    proportions. Something that special is unlikely to work reliably with
    auto metering though so you will still be looking at manual metering and
    careful experimentation.

    I will mention again though if it's at all possible to set up a tripod,
    the museum lighting is probably great and the results could be
    exquisite, just like you see with your naked eye.

    unexpertly yours,

    --
    Paul Furman
    http://www.edgehill.net/1
    san francisco native plants
  9. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    >
    > I'm looking for a recommendation for a new digital
    > camera, flash. 8 mega pixels is more than enough, I'll
    > actually be shooting at only 3 or 5 MP. I'm, of course,
    > interested in sharpness and low noise, which I would
    > normally expect in any camera in the price range of the
    > Canon Rebel XT.
    >
    > I'm also looking for recommendations for a zoom lens for
    > the Rebel (or other EVF or DSLR) longer than the 28-85mm
    > equivalent that comes with the Rebel "kit". I'm looking
    > for something that is at least 35-150mm, preferably 28-
    > 200mm equivalent.
    >
    > Canon apparently has a wide angle-to-zoom lens to fit my
    > needs/wants but is pricey (sorry, I can't remember the
    > model number). I don't want to be "penny wise but dollar
    > foolish" and buy somebody else's glass, but would like
    > to get the best quality I can at a reasonable price (who
    > doesn't, right?)

    My own flash experience is limited, but I do know that the 350D is an
    excellent camera. I have just bought the Canon 580EX flash - and expect to
    get some decent pictures in the right circumstances. I'm not sure that the
    museum environment is the right place for a camera mounted flash. If you
    can't bounce the flash off an adjacent surface then you are going to have
    harsh shadows.

    Try the 350D body with a high specfication wide angle lens. I have bought an
    L series lens and they really are much much better than the cheaper lenses
    (a second is on order). Also. the 350D has a sensor that is capable of using
    high ISO without too much noise. A high spec lens and high ISO may help by
    allowing you to use flash as fill in only.

    John
  10. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    eatmorepies commented courteously...

    > My own flash experience is limited, but I do know
    > that the 350D is an excellent camera. I have just
    > bought the Canon 580EX flash - and expect to get
    > some decent pictures in the right circumstances.

    > I'm not sure that the museum environment is the
    > right place for a camera mounted flash.

    John, I agree that museums nor anyplace else are not
    good places to shoot with only one flash mounted atop
    the camera. But, at the risk of sounded like an ingrate
    for refusing your help and advice, the problem /still/
    is underexposure. I have no complaints whatsoever with
    flash glare or any of the other limitations of the way I
    choose to shoot my cars.

    > If you can't bounce the flash off an adjacent surface
    > then you are going to have harsh shadows.

    Yes, I will, but I am a "documentary" photographer, not
    an artist. Hence my goal is to capture the car "in all
    its glory" without regard to how "dramatic" or well-
    composed the photos are. Thus, while I don't like harsh
    shadows better than the next person, they don't bother
    me nearly enough to do anything about them.

    > Try the 350D body with a high specfication wide angle
    > lens. I have bought an L series lens and they really
    > are much much better than the cheaper lenses (a
    > second is on order). Also. the 350D has a sensor
    > that is capable of using high ISO without too much
    > noise. A high spec lens and high ISO may help by
    > allowing you to use flash as fill in only.

    I don't understand what you mean by "high
    specificication wide angle lens". What I want is
    something in the range of 35mm-200mm equivalent. The
    long end is for outdoor shooting of both cars and
    general subjects, not the cars in the museums, where
    wide angle-to-normal is normally necessary. I just don't
    want buy nor haul around a bunch of lenses.

    Please explain your take on "fill flash". I understand
    the term and can do it but, again, the /issue/ is a
    given camera's ability to properly expose images
    consistently, /not/ reducing harsh shadows or much
    anything else.

    I apologize again for perhaps being abrupt with you, I
    really don't mean to sound like a twit. It is just that
    I am /so/ frustrated in not being able to explain what I
    need/want without people giving me Photography 101
    lessons. I appreciate that, of course, but it doesn't do
    much for me if I can't get reliable exposures in the
    first place.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  11. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "All Things Mopar" <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote in message
    news:Xns966BB24DA84B0ReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    > Charles Schuler commented courteously...
    >
    >> Car museums allow flash photography whereas art
    >> museums do not (each, of course, sets their own
    > rules).
    >> In those that do allow flash, a diffuser or the use
    >> of bounce flash is worth considering.
    >
    > Thanks again, Charles, but a diffuser won't help, as
    > what I encounter is /deep/ underexposure. Likewise,
    > bounch flash is infeasible as there isn't anything
    > overhead to bounch off - ceilings typically 12-15 feet
    > above the floor.
    >

    Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers," the MiniBounce and the
    PocketBounce. These allow you to bounce flash when not in an environment
    that would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall ceilings.

    --
    Skip Middleton
    http://www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
  12. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    On Sat, 04 Jun 2005 15:12:15 -0500, All Things Mopar
    <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote:

    >Hi, All.
    >
    >Many of you are aware of the problems I've had getting
    >well-exposed, consistent exposed pictures when using
    >flash on my Nikon Coolpix 5700 with Sunpak's excellent
    >433D external when shooting cars in dark museum
    >settings. A few weeks ago, I bought a Nikon 8800 with
    >Nikon's SB-800 external, but results were even worse,
    >despite my best efforts, help from the camera store and
    >help on this NG. So, I returned it for a charge credit.
    >
    >In a nutshell, I have no problems whatsoever in
    >daylight, but when I shoot car pictures in museums,
    >results vary considerably. About 1/3 are OK, another 1/3
    >are underexposed by 2 f/stops, while the rest are under
    >by 5-6 stops. I really don't want to get into another
    >long discussion about why I'm shooting flash and not
    >available light on a tripod, suffice that I want to.
    >
    >I've long been enamored with EVF cameras because I could
    >see instantly if I did or did not get a decent exposure.
    >But, I'm being lobbied by the camera store and by others
    >that I'll /never/ get good flash with /any/ Nikon EVF
    >because their underlying flash exposure systems just
    >aren't up to the task. Maybe this is bunk or maybe
    >somebody's DSLR really is the best camera for me.
    >
    >The camera most often recommended to me right now is
    >Canon's Digital Rebel XT with DIGIC II. My local store
    >recommends that I also buy Canon's Speedlite 550EX,
    >because it has the power I need and is fully adjustable
    >for EV. I'm not worried about buing a "pig in a poke"
    >because the store manager will give me a 10-day trial,
    >as he did with the Nikon 8800.
    >
    >I'm looking for a recommendation for a new digital
    >camera, flash. 8 mega pixels is more than enough, I'll
    >actually be shooting at only 3 or 5 MP. I'm, of course,
    >interested in sharpness and low noise, which I would
    >normally expect in any camera in the price range of the
    >Canon Rebel XT.
    >
    >I'm also looking for recommendations for a zoom lens for
    >the Rebel (or other EVF or DSLR) longer than the 28-85mm
    >equivalent that comes with the Rebel "kit". I'm looking
    >for something that is at least 35-150mm, preferably 28-
    >200mm equivalent.
    >
    >Canon apparently has a wide angle-to-zoom lens to fit my
    >needs/wants but is pricey (sorry, I can't remember the
    >model number). I don't want to be "penny wise but dollar
    >foolish" and buy somebody else's glass, but would like
    >to get the best quality I can at a reasonable price (who
    >doesn't, right?)
    >
    >I'll keep this post short for brevity but will gladly
    >answer any questions you may have to help guide me in my
    >quest. Thanks so much in advance.

    I don't do cars, but I have had recent experience with museum
    photography as an amateur, and, like you, I'm a "documentary" shooter.
    These were taken in the Air Force Mueum in Dayton, Ohio. This museum's
    director (an AF General) specifically wants the lighting to be
    "dramitic", which means low ambient light, with the planes spotlit.
    This means low light levels, even on the planes. On-camera flash
    leaves most with unsatisfactory pics.
    My camera is a Digital Rebel/300D, with a Sigma EF 500 DG Super flash.
    These pics were shot using the kit lens.

    Ambient light, ISO 800, 1/15 sec, F:3.5, handheld:
    http://pippina.com/misc/no-flash1.jpg
    http://pippina.com/misc/no-flash2.jpg

    Flash, ISO 100, 1/60 sec, F:3.5:
    http://pippina.com/misc/flash1.jpg

    In my opinion( considering the fact that I took over 300 pics there),
    ambient light is better. And that means (IMO) a DSLR, fairly
    obviously.

    Now, I don't do cars. But I do do museums. Sometimes the flash (with a
    little quick 'n dirty post processing - in this case, PSP's One Step
    PhotoFix - is pretty good. Not pro quality by any means, but very
    serviceable for my needs.

    From the Carillon Historical Park:

    Using Flash:
    http://pippina.com/misc/flash2.jpg

    Ambient light, ISO 400, 1/80 sec, F:5.0, handheld:
    http://pippina.com/misc/no-flash3.jpg

    The ability to use higher ISO numbers, IMO, lets you shoot ambient
    light with good results, if you're steady enough.
    But flash or no flash, a DSLR is much better than even something like
    the Oly C-8080 for this type of photography.

    And, a hint: shoot at full resolution; get another card or two if
    that's what it takes. You never knowwhat might come along, or if,
    after viewing your pics, you really wish you'd shot *that* pic at full
    res. As well, in the future, you may full well kick yourself for
    shooting at low res when you had hi res available. Your next printer
    may be able to use that resolution.

    --
    Big Bill
    Replace "g" with "a"
  13. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Paul Furman commented courteously...

    > I do think your expectations are unreasonable.
    > Flash is awfully difficult to use effectively from
    > what I see around here and doubly so for highly
    > reflective subjects. For the kind of particular
    > requirements you want, I don't think auto exposures
    > on a small sensor camera with an on-camera flash
    > are going to work.

    If flash is so unreasonable, why does Nikon get $330 for
    their external and Canon get up to $370? /Somebody/ must
    think this is double plus good!

    > The kind of subject matter you are talking about is
    > very difficult being very reflective you will have
    > highlights from the flash blowing out and illumination
    > simply will bounce off & be lost.

    I know that! I'm not concerned about flash glare or lost
    highlights nearly as much as I am about severe
    underexposure and inconsistant exposure. Can you please
    stay on-point?
    >
    > Cars being rather large and three dimensional, depth
    of
    > field is also a serious issue.

    Not really. For a front 3/4 view of an 18' car using a
    50mm equivalent lens at f/3.5, I can get enough of
    entire car "in focus" by doing the AF lock at the A-
    pillar and taking advantage of the 1/3-2/3 DOF rule. I
    don't at all care about the background, for DOF or
    exposure. It's the car, the car, the car!

    I do appreciate people's attempts to help me, but again,
    it is most frustrating for me to see the talented folks
    to go off into the tall weeds (to my very specific
    needs/wants), and begin telling me I'm all wet. I know
    that, too!

    Now, what I'd /really/ like to hear are what the /best/
    camera/lens/flash combos I should look at in order to
    get the best overall flash /exposures/. I'm sure there
    are experts here on all brands and models of digitals
    and I look forward to some good suggestions on how to
    improve my car pictures.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  14. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:

    > Paul Furman commented courteously...
    >
    >>The kind of subject matter you are talking about is
    >>very difficult being very reflective you will have
    >>highlights from the flash blowing out and illumination
    >>simply will bounce off & be lost.
    >
    >
    > I know that! I'm not concerned about flash glare or lost
    > highlights nearly as much as I am about severe
    > underexposure and inconsistant exposure.


    I'm suggesting that maybe the flash light is bouncing off the reflective
    surface and not really doing much or behaving in extreme ways that
    confuse the metering. Can you post examples of these troubled
    mis-metered flash shots? Email a few to me & I'll post them. Maybe there
    is some glare that throws off the metering or the contrast with the
    background. Is the problem with light or dark colored cars?


    --
    Paul Furman
    http://www.edgehill.net/1
    san francisco native plants
  15. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    On Sun, 05 Jun 2005 09:05:56 -0700, Big Bill <bigbill@PIPPING.COM>
    wrote:

    ....
    >This museum's
    >director (an AF General) specifically wants the lighting to be
    >"dramitic", which means low ambient light, with the planes spotlit.
    ....
    Wow! If I could spell...
    "dramitic" should be "dramatic".
    Also, I'm using a laptop, as my desktop's mobo is at Gigabyte for an
    exchange. I hate the laptop's keyboard! :-(

    --
    Big Bill
    Replace "g" with "a"
  16. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Skip M commented courteously...

    > Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers,"
    > the MiniBounce and the PocketBounce. These allow
    > you to bounce flash when not in an environment that
    > would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall
    > ceilings.

    That's very interesting, I'll investigate. In the meantime, what
    do these "bounce" flash aids bounce off if there's nothing above
    the scene? Museumes are bad enough, but outdoors?

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  17. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:
    > eatmorepies commented courteously...
    >
    >
    >>My own flash experience is limited, but I do know
    >>that the 350D is an excellent camera. I have just
    >>bought the Canon 580EX flash - and expect to get
    >>some decent pictures in the right circumstances.
    >
    >
    >>I'm not sure that the museum environment is the
    >>right place for a camera mounted flash.
    >
    >
    > John, I agree that museums nor anyplace else are not
    > good places to shoot with only one flash mounted atop
    > the camera. But, at the risk of sounded like an ingrate
    > for refusing your help and advice, the problem /still/
    > is underexposure. I have no complaints whatsoever with
    > flash glare or any of the other limitations of the way I
    > choose to shoot my cars.
    >
    >
    >>If you can't bounce the flash off an adjacent surface
    >>then you are going to have harsh shadows.
    >
    >
    > Yes, I will, but I am a "documentary" photographer, not
    > an artist. Hence my goal is to capture the car "in all
    > its glory" without regard to how "dramatic" or well-
    > composed the photos are. Thus, while I don't like harsh
    > shadows better than the next person, they don't bother
    > me nearly enough to do anything about them.
    >
    >
    >>Try the 350D body with a high specfication wide angle
    >>lens. I have bought an L series lens and they really
    >>are much much better than the cheaper lenses (a
    >>second is on order). Also. the 350D has a sensor
    >>that is capable of using high ISO without too much
    >>noise. A high spec lens and high ISO may help by
    >>allowing you to use flash as fill in only.
    >
    >
    > I don't understand what you mean by "high
    > specificication wide angle lens". What I want is
    > something in the range of 35mm-200mm equivalent. The
    > long end is for outdoor shooting of both cars and
    > general subjects, not the cars in the museums, where
    > wide angle-to-normal is normally necessary. I just don't
    > want buy nor haul around a bunch of lenses.
    >
    > Please explain your take on "fill flash". I understand
    > the term and can do it but, again, the /issue/ is a
    > given camera's ability to properly expose images
    > consistently, /not/ reducing harsh shadows or much
    > anything else.
    >
    > I apologize again for perhaps being abrupt with you, I
    > really don't mean to sound like a twit. It is just that
    > I am /so/ frustrated in not being able to explain what I
    > need/want without people giving me Photography 101
    > lessons. I appreciate that, of course, but it doesn't do
    > much for me if I can't get reliable exposures in the
    > first place.
    >
    Apology considered, for someone not meaning to sound like a twit, you
    sure are doing a good job of it.

    Try this to eliminate as many variables as possible.

    Put the camera in manual mode, center weighted metering and STANDARD
    *NOT MATRIX* TTL.Set your shutter speed to around 1/125 and F stop as
    desired taking into consideration subject distance and flash range. See
    if that doesn't get you close. My experience with the earlier SB80DX is
    that you probably will have to dial in about +1 stop of compensation on
    the flash (NOT ON THE CAMERA) for best results.

    Nikon (my area of experience) wants to try to do balanced fill flash
    most of the time. You have to almost beat them to death to get plain old
    TTL flash. I'm interpreting here from my SB80 experience which is that
    standard TTL is set on the flash by making sure that only TTL shows not
    TTL with the little matrix symbol. With the matrix thing showing you're
    going to get auto balanced fill flash.

    I have not used the 8800, but from all I've read in the Nikon groups I
    frequent, it works just fine as does the SB800. The SB800 gets rave
    reviews by most.

    By the way, the only info I could find on the Sunpak 433D indicated it
    was dedicated for Minolta cameras. There are 433AF units dedicated for
    Nikon, Canon and others, but all I found on the 433D was Minolta.

    I also am of the opinion that the store manager either has an ax to
    grind with Nikon or is getting a better profit margin from Canon or
    someone else. Canon and Nikon are both very capable systems and either
    the Canon Rebel or Nikon D70 would suit your needs. All that being said,
    from what you've said in your previous posts, I'd give the 8800 another
    try. Specs seem to meet all you requirements. Once you solve the flash
    exposure thing it should be perfect for you. (I know solving the flash
    thing is you major concern, but I believe that it's more operator
    error/confusion than camera/flash problems. Just MHO.)

    Hope some of this has helped.

    Best Regards,
    Dave
  18. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    You can also get very nice IS (image stabilized) lens that give you more
    stops (latitude) for hand held low light that complements the ability to use
    fast lenses and higher ISOs with reasonably low noise

    I have 3 Olympus P&S that work well for specific environment (hand held -
    low light indoors is not one of them) and will be getting a Canon 20D and
    some good lenses prior to my september vacation - partly to have more lens
    choice, partly due to the aggrevation of shutter lag, partly to use in low
    light environment

    I wonder if you could rent some DSLR combo to test


    "Paul Furman" <paul-@-edgehill.net> wrote in message
    news:3NednT_twsXzDj_fRVn-hA@speakeasy.net...
    > All Things Mopar wrote:
    >
    >> Hi, All.
    >>
    >> Many of you are aware of the problems I've had getting well-exposed,
    >> consistent exposed pictures when using flash on my Nikon Coolpix 5700
    >> with Sunpak's excellent 433D external when shooting cars in dark museum
    >> settings.
    >
    >
    > Yep.
    >
    > Did you say you got good results with family's $200 digicams? Heh, why not
    > do that then?
    >
    > I do think your expectations are unreasonable. Flash is awfully difficult
    > to use effectively from what I see around here and doubly so for highly
    > reflective subjects. For the kind of particular requirements you want, I
    > don't think auto exposures on a small sensor camera with an on-camera
    > flash are going to work.
    >
    > The advantage of a DSLR is the larger pixel size and ability to shoot in
    > low light with high ISO. This is real. Outdoors in full sun you can get
    > great shots with a smaller pixel camera but the ISO adjustment can make a
    > big difference with a DSLR in low light.
    >
    > But don't think a DSLR is going to be easy and you are correct in worrying
    > about needing a bunch of lenses for different situations because the whole
    > system is bigger, the lenses are bigger & less adaptable than a small
    > pixel camera. The kind of subject matter you are talking about is very
    > difficult being very reflective you will have highlights from the flash
    > blowing out and illumination simply will bounce off & be lost.
    >
    > Cars being rather large and three dimensional, depth of field is also a
    > serious issue. If you got a fast lens you could still only get a narrow
    > slice in focus which would only be capable of rather 'artsy' looking
    > pictures like the front fender in focus & the rest a blurry mirage.
    >
    > I can only relate to folks talking about shooting small model cars &
    > similar products like jewelery where it's common to build a tent of
    > translucent fabric with big hot lights on all sides in order to get
    > suitable illumination for a reflective subject like that. The equivalent
    > for flash would be bouncing off the ceiling at relatively low 'fill'
    > levels and boosting ISO to make use of the available light in reasonable
    > proportions. Something that special is unlikely to work reliably with auto
    > metering though so you will still be looking at manual metering and
    > careful experimentation.
    >
    > I will mention again though if it's at all possible to set up a tripod,
    > the museum lighting is probably great and the results could be exquisite,
    > just like you see with your naked eye.
    >
    > unexpertly yours,
    >
    > --
    > Paul Furman
    > http://www.edgehill.net/1
    > san francisco native plants
  19. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Steven Toney commented courteously...

    > You can also get very nice IS (image stabilized)
    > lens that give you more stops (latitude) for hand
    > held low light that complements the ability to use
    > fast lenses and higher ISOs with reasonably low noise

    Thanks, Steven.

    Please stick to my question: what camera/lens/flash
    combo(s) should I be looking at given that I /want/ to
    shoot flash?

    I know I can shoot high ISO at low shutter speeds with
    an IS lens, preferably with a tripod, I just don't want
    to! When I go to a museum, I'm looking to take several
    hundred "documentary" pictures in a few hours. I don't
    have time for a tripod. And, if the place is at all
    busy, setting up a tripod is problematical; in fact, the
    curator may balk since it disrupts his museum for the
    other visitors.

    > I wonder if you could rent some DSLR combo to test

    Possibly. I'm hoping to home in on a "better mouse
    trap" and take advantage of my local store's liberal
    trial buy. The problem I'm having with this thread is
    that everyone is telling my I can't do what I want to do
    for this, that, and the other reason.

    What I would really like to hear is "given that you
    understand the limitations of flash, here's the
    cameras/lenses/flashes you should look at". Then, I
    could read the reviews on dpreview.com and go to my
    local store to see how the various cameras "feel", get
    an idea on total price, etc.

    Can you help me in my quest? Thanks again.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  20. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Dave commented courteously...

    > Try this to eliminate as many variables as possible.
    >
    > Put the camera in manual mode, center weighted
    metering
    > and STANDARD *NOT MATRIX* TTL.Set your shutter speed
    > to around 1/125 and F stop as desired taking into
    > consideration subject distance and flash range.
    > See if that doesn't get you close. My experience
    > with the earlier SB80DX is that you probably will
    > have to dial in about +1 stop of compensation on
    > the flash (NOT ON THE CAMERA) for best results.

    Dave, I tried this already. First with my 5700 and
    Sunpak 433D and again more recently with the 8800 and
    SB-800. I tried Programmed Auto, Aperture Priority (to
    play with DOF), and Manual. And, I tried TTL, Auto, and
    Manual on the flash.

    No combination of flash and camera settings would do the
    job most of the time (>70% were badly underexposed). I
    know that sounds impossible, but I have the images on my
    HD to prove it, with carefully documented shooting notes
    to augment what is in EXIF.

    Still, to stay on point, I've given up on the 5700 and
    already taken the 8800 back. What I'm looking for right
    now is what I should try /next/.

    > Nikon (my area of experience) wants to try to do
    > balanced fill flash most of the time. You have to
    > almost beat them to death to get plain old TTL flash.

    That's putting it mildly, Dave! My less complimentary
    term would be "incompetant engineering". I can't
    understand why all that money and brain power would
    require you or I to "beat them to death" - it should
    just plain work - 99 44/100% of the time.

    > I'm interpreting here from my SB80 experience which
    > is that standard TTL is set on the flash by making
    > sure that only TTL shows not TTL with the little
    matrix
    > symbol. With the matrix thing showing you're going to
    > get auto balanced fill flash.

    Thank you. Tried this also, and tried Matrix, Center
    Weighted and Spot in the 8800. No effect whatsoever that
    I could detect while shooting 4 different times in the
    Walter P. Chrysler Museum.

    > I have not used the 8800, but from all I've read
    > in the Nikon groups I frequent, it works just fine
    > as does the SB800. The SB800 gets rave reviews by
    most.

    I read the same rave reviews in dpreview and other
    places, hence my purchase decision. Yet, /no one/
    commenting /anyplace/ I've read has direct real-world
    car museum experience, so they in effect don't speak
    with authority to me.

    > By the way, the only info I could find on the Sunpak
    > 433D indicated it was dedicated for Minolta cameras.
    > There are 433AF units dedicated for Nikon, Canon and
    > others, but all I found on the 433D was Minolta.

    No. The 433D is specifically designed for the 5700 TTL
    system and has the 3 extra hot shoe contacts. It
    wouldn't work on the 8800 because of its new tech iTTL
    system.
    >
    > I also am of the opinion that the store manager either
    > has an ax to grind with Nikon or is getting a better
    > profit margin from Canon or someone else. Canon and
    > Nikon are both very capable systems and either the
    > Canon Rebel or Nikon D70 would suit your needs.

    I can see why you'd suspect the camera dude, but iffn he
    had an ax to grind, why would he let me shoot 500+ pics
    on the 8800 and still cheerfully give me my money back?
    Yeah, he'd like to sell a Rebel XT but he's also got
    Minolta, Fuji, and others, yet still says the Canon is
    best for his understanind of my flash needs.

    But, to be sure there's no bias towards Canon, I posted
    this message. I don't want to buy from a "bigot-
    anything", although you can imagine I'm pretty soured by
    two really back Nikon buys.

    > All that being said, from what you've said in your
    previous
    > posts, I'd give the 8800 another try. Specs seem to
    meet
    > all you requirements.

    Specs don't mean anything if the camera can't perform in
    real picture taking situations. And, no, there's no
    second chance for the 8800. I had it over a week and I'm
    convinced I did everything possible to make it work,
    including some excellent advice I got on this NG the
    last time I posted.

    > Once you solve the flash exposure thing it should be
    > perfect for you. (I know solving the flash thing is
    you
    > major concern, but I believe that it's more operator
    > error/confusion than camera/flash problems. Just MHO.)

    Dave, I've /never/ dismissed operator error! And,
    solving flash /is/ a major concern. I'll stay with my
    minimally reasonable 5700 until I can find something
    which is demonstrably better.

    So, again, can /anyone/ tell me what to look at next,
    and /please/ stop playing "Monday morning QB" on what I
    shoulda/coulda done?

    Thank you, all.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  21. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:
    []
    > For brevity I didn't mention my year-2000 FujiFilm 4900,
    > which did an outstanding job being it only had a small
    > built-in speedlight. I also tested my wife's Kodak 6330
    > ($150) and my daughter's Kokak 7000 ($200) - each
    > performed flawlessly in the same museum shoots that both
    > my Nikon 5700 and the 8800 failed so miserably at
    > (within their flash range, of course).

    Is it at all possible that the Fuji and Koday cameras had a longer shutter
    opening time, so that areas which were not lit by the flash appeared
    brighter, because the natural illumination had chance to register more
    photons? Perhaps these cameras had the equivalent of what the 5700 calls
    "slow flash" (IIRC)? I know that sometime with the 5700 I would
    deliberately set slow flash to capture both a sharp flash picture together
    with some natural lighting or movement - exposures could be quite slow
    under those circumstances (say 1/10..1/2 second).

    Cheers,
    David
  22. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    David J Taylor commented courteously...

    > Is it at all possible that the Fuji and Kodak
    > cameras had a longer shutter opening time, so
    > that areas which were not lit by the flash
    > appeared brighter, because the natural illumination
    > had chance to register more photons?

    No, David, these little P&S cameras are /not/ using long
    shutter speeds. Puleeze! These aren't sophisticated
    machines, I just mentioned them to make my point that
    good flash /is/ possible with even a cheap camera, so
    why not an expensive one?

    And, backgrounds are lit by whatever light there is, it
    makes no difference whatsoever what the camera is used.
    I shot these test shots one-after-the-other in identical
    situations.

    > Perhaps these cameras had the equivalent of what
    > the 5700 calls "slow flash" (IIRC)? I know that
    > sometime with the 5700 I would deliberately set slow
    > flash to capture both a sharp flash picture together
    > with some natural lighting or movement - exposures
    > could be quite slow under those circumstances
    > (say 1/10..1/2 second).

    No. You're doing it again, I'm afraid. Do you really
    think I'd not notice a 1/10 second shutter? Puleeze,
    again! I may not be the sharpest tool in the box, but
    I'm also not an idiot.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  23. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Sorry, I can't answer on experience with car museum photography

    I can say that with my 3 Olys - C750, C5050, and new C8080 -- I have had no
    underexposures with the use of their built in flashes on a variety of indoor
    shots, but without trying them in your environment I have no idea if the
    camera would work for you. I have an exteranl flash for the Olys coming to
    try some more fill/bounce techniques for indoors just to learn

    Although I'm buying a Canon 20D by September, I recently picked up a C8080
    at $500 and it is so far a great camera for it's niche

    I moving to dSLRs for variety of reason hand held, lowlight, IS lenses to do
    some tough indoors w/o flash is one use. There are time flashes are not cool

    I'll be retiring from the military in a few years and want to get better
    with a variety of photographic skill, to perhaps supplemental my retirement
    with some income generated by various photography projects, if no income is
    realized, it's a fun hobby anyway


    "All Things Mopar" <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote in message
    news:Xns966C67EEFA1FFReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    > Steven Toney commented courteously...
    >
    >> You can also get very nice IS (image stabilized)
    >> lens that give you more stops (latitude) for hand
    >> held low light that complements the ability to use
    >> fast lenses and higher ISOs with reasonably low noise
    >
    > Thanks, Steven.
    >
    > Please stick to my question: what camera/lens/flash
    > combo(s) should I be looking at given that I /want/ to
    > shoot flash?
    >
    > I know I can shoot high ISO at low shutter speeds with
    > an IS lens, preferably with a tripod, I just don't want
    > to! When I go to a museum, I'm looking to take several
    > hundred "documentary" pictures in a few hours. I don't
    > have time for a tripod. And, if the place is at all
    > busy, setting up a tripod is problematical; in fact, the
    > curator may balk since it disrupts his museum for the
    > other visitors.
    >
    >> I wonder if you could rent some DSLR combo to test
    >
    > Possibly. I'm hoping to home in on a "better mouse
    > trap" and take advantage of my local store's liberal
    > trial buy. The problem I'm having with this thread is
    > that everyone is telling my I can't do what I want to do
    > for this, that, and the other reason.
    >
    > What I would really like to hear is "given that you
    > understand the limitations of flash, here's the
    > cameras/lenses/flashes you should look at". Then, I
    > could read the reviews on dpreview.com and go to my
    > local store to see how the various cameras "feel", get
    > an idea on total price, etc.
    >
    > Can you help me in my quest? Thanks again.
    >
    > --
    > ATM, aka Jerry
  24. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > So, please stay and home and play with your toys. I was
    > educated as an engineer, not a theoretical
    > mathematician, so I've lived the life of a pragmatist. I
    > simply don't care what the "best" method of taking
    > pictures is, I only want a better camera/flash. And, I
    > never claimed to be any kinda great photographer. I
    > /only/ want to buy something that is /reliable/.

    It could simply be that if you want results like professionals
    produce, you're going to have to get them using the same methods and
    equipment that professionals use. If professionals take photos like
    that with tripod-mounted cameras firing studio flashes on stands with
    exposures set using incident flashmeters, instead of using handheld
    cameras with on-camera flashes and automatic metering, then maybe
    you'll have to do the same.
  25. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:
    > Dave commented courteously...
    >
    >
    >>Try this to eliminate as many variables as possible.
    >>
    >>Put the camera in manual mode, center weighted
    >
    > metering
    >
    >>and STANDARD *NOT MATRIX* TTL.Set your shutter speed
    >>to around 1/125 and F stop as desired taking into
    >>consideration subject distance and flash range.
    >>See if that doesn't get you close. My experience
    >>with the earlier SB80DX is that you probably will
    >>have to dial in about +1 stop of compensation on
    >>the flash (NOT ON THE CAMERA) for best results.
    >
    >
    > Dave, I tried this already. First with my 5700 and
    > Sunpak 433D and again more recently with the 8800 and
    > SB-800. I tried Programmed Auto, Aperture Priority (to
    > play with DOF), and Manual. And, I tried TTL, Auto, and
    > Manual on the flash.
    >
    > No combination of flash and camera settings would do the
    > job most of the time (>70% were badly underexposed). I
    > know that sounds impossible, but I have the images on my
    > HD to prove it, with carefully documented shooting notes
    > to augment what is in EXIF.
    >
    > Still, to stay on point, I've given up on the 5700 and
    > already taken the 8800 back. What I'm looking for right
    > now is what I should try /next/.
    >
    >
    >>Nikon (my area of experience) wants to try to do
    >>balanced fill flash most of the time. You have to
    >>almost beat them to death to get plain old TTL flash.
    >
    >
    > That's putting it mildly, Dave! My less complimentary
    > term would be "incompetant engineering". I can't
    > understand why all that money and brain power would
    > require you or I to "beat them to death" - it should
    > just plain work - 99 44/100% of the time.
    >
    >
    >>I'm interpreting here from my SB80 experience which
    >>is that standard TTL is set on the flash by making
    >>sure that only TTL shows not TTL with the little
    >
    > matrix
    >
    >>symbol. With the matrix thing showing you're going to
    >>get auto balanced fill flash.
    >
    >
    > Thank you. Tried this also, and tried Matrix, Center
    > Weighted and Spot in the 8800. No effect whatsoever that
    > I could detect while shooting 4 different times in the
    > Walter P. Chrysler Museum.
    >
    >
    >>I have not used the 8800, but from all I've read
    >>in the Nikon groups I frequent, it works just fine
    >>as does the SB800. The SB800 gets rave reviews by
    >
    > most.
    >
    > I read the same rave reviews in dpreview and other
    > places, hence my purchase decision. Yet, /no one/
    > commenting /anyplace/ I've read has direct real-world
    > car museum experience, so they in effect don't speak
    > with authority to me.
    >
    >
    >>By the way, the only info I could find on the Sunpak
    >>433D indicated it was dedicated for Minolta cameras.
    >>There are 433AF units dedicated for Nikon, Canon and
    >>others, but all I found on the 433D was Minolta.
    >
    >
    > No. The 433D is specifically designed for the 5700 TTL
    > system and has the 3 extra hot shoe contacts. It
    > wouldn't work on the 8800 because of its new tech iTTL
    > system.
    >
    >>I also am of the opinion that the store manager either
    >>has an ax to grind with Nikon or is getting a better
    >>profit margin from Canon or someone else. Canon and
    >>Nikon are both very capable systems and either the
    >>Canon Rebel or Nikon D70 would suit your needs.
    >
    >
    > I can see why you'd suspect the camera dude, but iffn he
    > had an ax to grind, why would he let me shoot 500+ pics
    > on the 8800 and still cheerfully give me my money back?
    > Yeah, he'd like to sell a Rebel XT but he's also got
    > Minolta, Fuji, and others, yet still says the Canon is
    > best for his understanind of my flash needs.
    >
    > But, to be sure there's no bias towards Canon, I posted
    > this message. I don't want to buy from a "bigot-
    > anything", although you can imagine I'm pretty soured by
    > two really back Nikon buys.
    >
    >
    >>All that being said, from what you've said in your
    >
    > previous
    >
    >>posts, I'd give the 8800 another try. Specs seem to
    >
    > meet
    >
    >>all you requirements.
    >
    >
    > Specs don't mean anything if the camera can't perform in
    > real picture taking situations. And, no, there's no
    > second chance for the 8800. I had it over a week and I'm
    > convinced I did everything possible to make it work,
    > including some excellent advice I got on this NG the
    > last time I posted.
    >
    >
    >>Once you solve the flash exposure thing it should be
    >>perfect for you. (I know solving the flash thing is
    >
    > you
    >
    >>major concern, but I believe that it's more operator
    >>error/confusion than camera/flash problems. Just MHO.)
    >
    >
    > Dave, I've /never/ dismissed operator error! And,
    > solving flash /is/ a major concern. I'll stay with my
    > minimally reasonable 5700 until I can find something
    > which is demonstrably better.
    >
    > So, again, can /anyone/ tell me what to look at next,
    > and /please/ stop playing "Monday morning QB" on what I
    > shoulda/coulda done?
    >
    > Thank you, all.
    >
    Jerry,

    One last thing to try. Put your flash on auto (camera on manual) and see
    if that works. Should eliminate the cameras from the issue or point
    directly at them. This assumes the 433D does auto flash. i.e. uses the
    sensor on the flash unit itself.

    You could also try getting Thom Hogan's excellent Nikon Flash Manual at:
    http://www.bythom.com/
    Much better written than any camera/flash manuals I've ever read.

    He also responds to E-Mail questions if needed.

    Hope this all works out for you.

    Best,
    Dave

    PS - I'm quite happy with my Nikon D100 with the SB80DX flash once I
    read the Hogan manual and got rid of all the manual confusion.

    D
  26. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "All Things Mopar" <noneofyour@busi.ness> wrote in message
    news:Xns966C7059A4EA8ReplyToken@216.196.97.131...
    > Skip M commented courteously...
    >
    >> Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers,"
    >> the MiniBounce and the PocketBounce. These allow
    >> you to bounce flash when not in an environment that
    >> would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall
    >> ceilings.
    >
    > That's very interesting, I'll investigate. In the meantime, what
    > do these "bounce" flash aids bounce off if there's nothing above
    > the scene? Museumes are bad enough, but outdoors?

    A diffusing panel. Bounce flash is not as harsh ... looks more natural and
    reduces the shadows.
  27. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar wrote:
    []
    > No. You're doing it again, I'm afraid. Do you really
    > think I'd not notice a 1/10 second shutter? Puleeze,
    > again! I may not be the sharpest tool in the box, but
    > I'm also not an idiot.

    OK, Jerry - I was simply trying to see what it might have been about the
    Fuji and Kodak cameras that allowed them to produce successful pictures
    when others did not. It seems to go against reason that better kit
    produces worse pictures, everything else being equal.

    I appreciate your frustration with this.

    Cheers,
    David
  28. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > Many of you are aware of the problems I've had getting
    > well-exposed, consistent exposed pictures when using
    > flash on my Nikon Coolpix 5700 with Sunpak's excellent
    > 433D external when shooting cars in dark museum
    > settings. A few weeks ago, I bought a Nikon 8800 with
    > Nikon's SB-800 external, but results were even worse,
    > despite my best efforts, help from the camera store and
    > help on this NG. So, I returned it for a charge credit.
    >
    > In a nutshell, I have no problems whatsoever in
    > daylight, but when I shoot car pictures in museums,
    > results vary considerably. About 1/3 are OK, another 1/3
    > are underexposed by 2 f/stops, while the rest are under
    > by 5-6 stops. I really don't want to get into another
    > long discussion about why I'm shooting flash and not
    > available light on a tripod, suffice that I want to.

    Hmmm.. I've used noth Nikon's and Canon's dedicated
    flash systems - and in my opinion, this is an area
    where Nikon's technology is better than Canon's.

    Still - TTL flash photography is difficult, and both
    Canon's E-TTL and Nikon's iTTL bodge a shot sometimes.

    I've no explanation for the bad results you're getting.
    Some bad results can be expected if you run on fully
    auto, but 1/3 of the shots underexposed by 5-6 stops
    are unheard off.

    Shooting cars in a dark museum is a difficult assigment.
    I assume the museum too large for bounce flash to
    work. A single, on-camera flash and shooting something
    as big as a car will give you ugly light whatever you do,
    but the exposure should be right.

    However, getting the exposure right shouldn't be a problem.
    Just make a test shot, look at the histogram, and dial
    in the required compensation for the actual shot. That
    should sove the exposure problems you mention. I assume
    the cars are stationary, so you have time for tests.

    > I've long been enamored with EVF cameras because I could
    > see instantly if I did or did not get a decent exposure.
    > But, I'm being lobbied by the camera store and by others
    > that I'll /never/ get good flash with /any/ Nikon EVF
    > because their underlying flash exposure systems just
    > aren't up to the task. Maybe this is bunk or maybe
    > somebody's DSLR really is the best camera for me.

    Yeah, that's a loot of bunk. Nikon's iTTL is the best
    dedicated flash system there is (IMHO). I think you
    need to work on your technique.

    If I were shooting cars in a dark museum, and had to
    use battery operated flash guns, I would bring at
    least 5 or 6 strobes, as well as modifiers such as
    umbrelleas or soft boxes. This is what you really
    need to get a evenly lit shot of an object as large
    as a car inside a huge, large room.

    Replacing the camera - but sticking to a single, camera
    mounted flash - is not going to solve your lighting
    problems on this assignment.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  29. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Gisle Hannemyr commented courteously...

    > Hmmm.. I've used noth Nikon's and Canon's
    > dedicated flash systems - and in my opinion,
    > this is an area where Nikon's technology is better
    > than Canon's.

    Hi, Gisle! Couldn't prove the above by my experience!
    <grin> Still, I have /no/ flash problems with my 5700 in
    "normal" environments, such as my home or local church,
    where there are low ceiling and walls, even when
    shooting with the flash straight ahead. It's /only/ a
    problem in museums. My too fav ones are the Walter P.
    Chrysler in Auburn Hills, Michigan, and The Henry Ford
    Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.

    I have the really bad images to "prove it" from both
    places. And, to avoid you're having to read all the
    replies-to-replies-to-replies, I've tried Programmed
    Auto and full Manual on my current Nikon 5700 and the
    8800 I had for a week. And, I've ran my Sunpak 433D on
    manual (with the 5700 on manual, of course), plus I ran
    the Nikon SB-800 on all of its modes, to no real
    advantage.

    > Still - TTL flash photography is difficult, and
    > both Canon's E-TTL and Nikon's iTTL bodge a shot
    > sometimes.

    Given the obvious challenges of a dark museum, I'd
    expect maybe 10-15% to need something at the
    camera/flash end, such as a change in EV, but haven't
    been able to find a good solution.

    I discovered only recently that upping the ISO on my
    5700 from 100 to 200 or 400 produces /much/ better flash
    pictures, albeit with significantly more noise. I need
    to do some more work to see if turning the camera's NR
    feature on works. Or, if I clean up the noise with PSP
    9's DCNR.
    >
    > I've no explanation for the bad results you're
    > getting. Some bad results can be expected if you run
    > on fully auto, but 1/3 of the shots underexposed by
    > 5-6 stops are unheard off.

    Unheard of for me, too, on my first digital, a FujiFilm
    4900 4MP I bought in January, 2001. For its day, the
    Fuji was a fine camera, with very low noise, good
    sharpness, and reasonable color balance.

    I didn't encounter this unusual "1/3 are bad" problem
    until I bought the Nikon 5700 last July. I even sent it
    back to Nikon service thinking it was broke. Then, when
    I evaluated the 8800 for a week and 500+ museum shots -
    over 60% were severely underexposed, I just gave up.

    I'd posted a "cry for help" here on this NG while I was
    testing the 8800 and got some good ideas, none of which
    worked well enough for me to keep the camera. I only had
    10 days for the eval, and the store manager wanted me to
    keep the total number of shots taken to around 500.
    Naturally, the camera store manager was motivated to
    help me to avoid a return-for-credit. But, he couldn't
    explain it, either, so he gave me my money back.

    I'd thought I'd researched the 8800 and SB-800 enough to
    have made an intelligent buying choice based on Nikon's
    new iTTL technology, so it pained me badly to have to
    return it. /Everything/ about the 8800 was better than
    the equivalent feature on my 5700, principally better
    sharpness and noticeably less noise.

    But, iffn I can't get good flash, the $1,400 800/SB-800
    is useless to me.

    > Shooting cars in a dark museum is a difficult
    > assigment. I assume the museum too large for bounce
    > flash to work.

    Yes, both the WPC and HF museums have very high ceilings
    - over 12', and there's no walls to bounce the flash
    off.

    > A single, on-camera flash and shooting something as
    big
    > as a car will give you ugly light whatever you do,
    > but the exposure should be right.

    Yes, you're right. I can deal with the uneven lighting
    across the length of the car in PSP 9 and can even fix
    the deep underexposures, albeit with quite a bit of
    work. I just want better exposures first time through
    and less post-processing work.

    (my calculator says that the rear of an 18' car should
    be about 2 stops under compared to the fender if
    shooting at a 30-45 degree angle).

    > However, getting the exposure right shouldn't be a
    > problem. Just make a test shot, look at the histogram,
    > and dial in the required compensation for the actual
    > shot.

    About the only thing I didn't try was a histogram
    adjustment. I tried every other photometric parameter
    available on the flash and 8800. I certainly had enough
    time, and I took good notes to inspect the images once I
    got home. But, I never discovered a combination of
    settings that would get me to the 85-90% range for
    exposure +/- 1 stop or two that I desire.

    > Yeah, that's a loot of bunk. Nikon's iTTL is the
    > best dedicated flash system there is (IMHO).
    > I think you need to work on your technique.

    I commented on that to other poster. Again, I sought
    help on this NG, implemented what people suggested, and
    went back to the store 3 times. Everyone's advice was
    sound but I couldn't make it work for me. As I said
    earlier, I have /never/ dismissed "operator error", but
    couldn't lock onto solution(s) that I could readily use
    in the field.
    >
    > If I were shooting cars in a dark museum, and
    > had to use battery operated flash guns, I would bring
    > at least 5 or 6 strobes, as well as modifiers such as
    > umbrelleas or soft boxes. This is what you really
    > need to get a evenly lit shot of an object as large
    > as a car inside a huge, large room.

    What you say is exactly right, if you're a pro and have
    plenty of money and plenty of time. But, again, my
    complaint /wasn't/ uneven lighting or flash glare, it
    was (and still is with the 5700) severe underexposures
    way too much of the time.

    > Replacing the camera - but sticking to a single,
    > camera mounted flash - is not going to solve your
    > lighting problems on this assignment.

    Your experience is superior to mine, but I can't accept
    it completely since my crummy old Fuji worked so well.
    Even my wife's Kodak $150 6330 worked well at the WPC
    side-by-side with the 5700 and 8800 (so long as I stayed
    under its 10' flash range).

    Frankly, I have no explanation for any of this. I don't
    now nor have ever expected anything approaching
    "perfection" for a camera-mounted strobe, but I /do/
    have an expectation for at least /reasonable/ exposures.

    Meanwhile, my investigation continues. Thanks for your
    insights.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  30. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "Skip M" <shadowcatcher@cox.net> writes:
    > Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers," the MiniBounce and the
    > PocketBounce. These allow you to bounce flash when not in an
    > environment that would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall
    > ceilings.

    That is unfortunately not the case.

    The LumiQuest devices only spread the light. This works fine in
    an environment with a light walls and ceilings, which then will
    reflect the light spread by LumiQuest back on the scene. But
    with no reflective surfaces, the light spread by the LumiQuest is
    just wasted. Outdoors, for intstance, it is useless.

    These diffusers doesn't magically turn the strobe from a point light
    source to an area light source. Modifiers that actually has area,
    such a soft boxes and umbrelleas, will do that.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  31. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Gisle Hannemyr commented courteously...

    > "Skip M" <shadowcatcher@cox.net> writes:
    >> Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers,"
    >> the MiniBounce and the PocketBounce. These allow
    >> you to bounce flash when not in an environment that
    >> would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall
    >> ceilings.
    >
    > That is unfortunately not the case.
    >
    > The LumiQuest devices only spread the light. This
    > works fine in an environment with a light walls and
    > ceilings, which then will reflect the light spread
    > by LumiQuest back on the scene. But with no
    > reflective surfaces, the light spread by the LumiQuest
    > is just wasted. Outdoors, for intstance, it is
    > useless.

    Well, at least my early-onset Alzheimer's isn't too bad
    yet! <grin> I Googled for "lumiquest" and looked at a
    number of sources of info. I was befuddled by the claims
    of bounce working when there was nothing to bounce the
    light off, so I gave up.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  32. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    "Gisle Hannemyr" <gisle+news@ifi.uio.no> wrote in message
    news:q5hdgc9tk0.fsf@viisi.ifi.uio.no...
    > "Skip M" <shadowcatcher@cox.net> writes:
    >> Lumiquest makes a couple of flash "bouncers," the MiniBounce and the
    >> PocketBounce. These allow you to bounce flash when not in an
    >> environment that would normally allow it, like outdoors or with tall
    >> ceilings.
    >
    > That is unfortunately not the case.
    >
    > The LumiQuest devices only spread the light. This works fine in
    > an environment with a light walls and ceilings, which then will
    > reflect the light spread by LumiQuest back on the scene. But
    > with no reflective surfaces, the light spread by the LumiQuest is
    > just wasted. Outdoors, for intstance, it is useless.
    >
    > These diffusers doesn't magically turn the strobe from a point light
    > source to an area light source. Modifiers that actually has area,
    > such a soft boxes and umbrelleas, will do that.
    > --
    > - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    > Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    > ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Gisle, it is not wasted any more than any other light source. It is just
    more diffuse, that is all. True, they are not as diffuse as an umbrella,
    but far more practical for putting on a shoe mounted flash. And
    considerably softer than a direct source.

    --
    Skip Middleton
    http://www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
  33. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > > The LumiQuest devices only spread the light. This works fine in
    > > an environment with a light walls and ceilings, which then will
    > > reflect the light spread by LumiQuest back on the scene. But with
    > > no reflective surfaces, the light spread by the LumiQuest is just
    > > wasted. Outdoors, for intstance, it is useless.
    >
    > Well, at least my early-onset Alzheimer's isn't too bad yet! <grin>
    > I Googled for "lumiquest" and looked at a number of sources of
    > info. I was befuddled by the claims of bounce working when there was
    > nothing to bounce the light off, so I gave up.

    The Lumiquest pocket bouncer is a small umbrella-like thing about 8
    inches across. This is enough to get some diffusion for small
    subjects (say a portrait) even outdoors. The usual wisdom about
    softboxes is to use one about the same size as the subject you're
    shooting, which means an enormous one (or several merely large ones
    with multiple strobes) if you're shooting a car. For a shot of
    someone's face, the Lumiquest is enough to make a big improvement over
    direct flash.
  34. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Paul Rubin commented courteously...

    > The Lumiquest pocket bouncer is a small umbrella-like
    > thing about 8 inches across. This is enough to get
    > some diffusion for small subjects (say a portrait)
    even
    > outdoors. The usual wisdom about softboxes is to use
    > one about the same size as the subject you're
    shooting,
    > which means an enormous one (or several merely large
    ones
    > with multiple strobes) if you're shooting a car.
    > For a shot of someone's face, the Lumiquest is enough
    > to make a big improvement over direct flash.

    Thanks for the quick clarification! I can easily see the
    use of an 8" umbrella for portaits but fail to see how
    that would help an 18' car in a dank musuem...

    And, once more, diffusion of light vs. flash glare is
    /not/ one of my complaints. I understand why I get glare
    with a straight-on blast of light, but I accept it for
    "documentary" shooting. A pro attempting to get an
    artistically pleasing, evenly lit car would not accept
    this, and would take the steps you and others a have
    suggested.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  35. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > John, I agree that museums nor anyplace else are not
    > good places to shoot with only one flash mounted atop
    > the camera. But, at the risk of sounded like an ingrate
    > for refusing your help and advice, the problem /still/
    > is underexposure.

    That a Nikon 8800 with an dedicated SB-800 flashgun in
    auto iTTL mode should give you underexposure in 2/3 of
    the images is unheard off.

    I would say this is either a case of operator error, or
    faulty equipment.

    > I apologize again for perhaps being abrupt with you, I
    > really don't mean to sound like a twit. It is just that
    > I am /so/ frustrated in not being able to explain what I
    > need/want without people giving me Photography 101
    > lessons. I appreciate that, of course, but it doesn't do
    > much for me if I can't get reliable exposures in the
    > first place.

    I appeciate your frustration, but there are too many people
    out there that get excellent exposure with similar equipment
    under similar circumstances. That is why I doubt that just
    buying new gear will solve your problems.

    Btw. did you try to use the SB-800 in "auto" mode (as opposed
    to iTTL)? Auto is simpler, and in some situations it works
    out better than iTTL.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  36. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Gisle Hannemyr commented courteously...

    > I appeciate your frustration, but there are too many
    > people out there that get excellent exposure with
    > similar equipment under similar circumstances.
    > That is why I doubt that just buying new gear will
    > solve your problems.

    I've not "talked" to anyone actually shooting cars, but
    your general statement makes sense. See my other reply
    to you about my possible operator error.
    >
    > Btw. did you try to use the SB-800 in "auto" mode (as
    > opposed to iTTL)? Auto is simpler, and in some
    > situations it works out better than iTTL.

    Yes, I did. It was the camera store manager who first
    suggested Auto rather than TTL. Results were sometimes
    better, sometimes worse than TTL.

    The only basic difference between under- and correct-
    exposures seemed to be the amount of ambient light
    available. That is, cars lit by the WPC museum's large
    2-story windows were fine, but ones lit by only the dim
    overhead spots were dismal. And, while light colored
    cars were generally better than dark one, paint color
    wasn't the only factor.

    Back to operator error for a moment. What is so
    difficult about pointing the camera at the car, making
    sure the flash has recharged fully, verifying that all
    the flash and camera settings are correct, then
    expecting a "good" exposure "most" of the time?

    To be as sure as I could be, I reset both the SB-800 and
    the 8800 to factory defaults and reshot a series. Total
    junk. From an operator error standpoint, what obvious
    thing(s) am I missing here?

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  37. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > Back to operator error for a moment. What is so difficult about
    > pointing the camera at the car, making sure the flash has recharged
    > fully, verifying that all the flash and camera settings are correct,
    > then expecting a "good" exposure "most" of the time?
    > To be as sure as I could be, I reset both the SB-800 and the 8800 to
    > factory defaults and reshot a series. Total junk. From an operator
    > error standpoint, what obvious thing(s) am I missing here?

    If some highlight on the car is confusing the flash sensor, you'll get
    an underexposed shot. That has been explained to you several times
    already. Try setting the exposure manually, either from a guide
    number calculation, or by taking repeated test shots until you get to
    an exposure that looks good on the LCD.
  38. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Paul Rubin commented courteously...

    > If some highlight on the car is confusing the flash
    > sensor, you'll get an underexposed shot. That has
    > been explained to you several times already.

    Paul, I'm getting tired of your style comments on my
    technique. Go back and re-read my posts in this thread,
    as well as the ones I made while I had the 8800 two
    weeks back, then tell me again why I'm all wet.

    > Try setting the exposure manually, either from a guide
    > number calculation, or by taking repeated test shots
    > until you get to an exposure that looks good on the
    LCD.

    Do you have a reading comprehension problem or do you
    just enjoy "taking me on"? I already discussed this -
    several times, and I think I did it right.

    If there's something bright on the car, e.g., the old-
    fashioned wide WSW tires, that will definitely confuse
    the flash, but flash glare shouldn't be that big a deal
    normally. And, for the lurkers who may also be learning
    impaired/can't read English, why is it that my old Fuji
    4900 did just fine, as did my wife's little Kodak? Same
    cars, same "confusing" glare.

    I've used "manual" strobes for 35 years, and flash bulbs
    before that, with a Konica SLR and a 1969 Nikon FTN SLR.
    Never had a bit of trouble with flash in museums or auto
    shows. It wasn't until the world became "automatic" did
    the problems start, and even then I had 4+ good years
    with my Fuji 4900.

    Can't say the same "why don't you try manual?" works for
    either the 5700/Sunpak 433D or the 8800/SB-800. Full
    manual on the flash and camera simply didn't work. But,
    how could you possibly know what the images look like or
    what it said in EXIF?

    And, I paced off the distance to the cars. Even if I
    blew that by twice, I'd still be within 2 f/stops,
    right? (flash power falls off as the square of the
    distance - twice as far away is 1/4th the light).

    Perhaps I'm better off just not asking for help. It's
    like engaging in those rediculous off-topic threads I
    see so often here. It seems that if anyone - not just me
    - doesn't do things the way you "experts" dictate,
    they're written off as some sort of mental deviate who
    has no "skill". Well, this is America (where I'm
    sitting, at least), and you're entitled to your opinion
    - even if its wrong...

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  39. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > Can't say the same "why don't you try manual?" works for
    > either the 5700/Sunpak 433D or the 8800/SB-800. Full
    > manual on the flash and camera simply didn't work. But,
    > how could you possibly know what the images look like or
    > what it said in EXIF?

    Set the SB-800 to 1/1 (full power), manual mode, and take a picture.

    Is it underexposed? If yes, you need a more powerful flash. If no,
    you are on the right track, so adjust exposure until the picture looks good.
  40. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Paul Rubin commented courteously...

    > Set the SB-800 to 1/1 (full power), manual mode, and
    > take a picture.
    >
    > Is it underexposed? If yes, you need a more
    > powerful flash. If no, you are on the right track,
    > so adjust exposure until the picture looks good.

    Now who's acting like a troll? Do the math: GN=100
    divided by say, 12 feet = f/8 at 1/60 or 1/125. Don't
    you think I already tried that?

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  41. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > > Is it underexposed? If yes, you need a more
    > > powerful flash. If no, you are on the right track,
    > > so adjust exposure until the picture looks good.
    >
    > Now who's acting like a troll? Do the math: GN=100 divided by say,
    > 12 feet = f/8 at 1/60 or 1/125. Don't you think I already tried that?

    I don't know. Did you? You set the camera to manual exposure, f/8 at
    1/60, and the flash to manual exposure, 1/1 (full power)? What was
    the result? Did you have the flip-down diffuser in front of the
    flash? GN=100 at ISO 100 sounds about right for no diffuser, with the
    zoom head at the wideangle position and the flash pointed directly at
    the car. If the diffuser was in place, or if you were using a light
    modifier like a bounce gizmo, the GN would be a lot lower and you'd
    have to make adjustments.

    Weren't you leaving?
  42. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > I never asked for advice on how to take pictures of cars
    > in museums. I /only/ asked what the /best/ camera/flash
    > combo would be.

    Well, the /best/ combo would be a Nikon D2X with a Chimera
    F2 Component Lightbank. You may want to check it out.

    But if want something less expensive, I would recommend
    either a Nikon Coolpix 5700 with a Sunpak a 433D, or
    a Nikon Coolpix 8800 with a Speedlight SB-800. Both
    are known to produce reliable results in the hands of
    a skilled operator.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  43. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Gisle Hannemyr commented courteously...

    > But if want something less expensive, I would
    > recommend either a Nikon Coolpix 5700 with a Sunpak a
    > 433D.

    That is exactly what I own today.

    > a Nikon Coolpix 8800 with a Speedlight SB-800.

    And, this is what I evaluated for 500+ shots a couple
    weeks back. You may have missed my posts while I was
    testing the 8800, where I described in detail what I was
    doing and the results I got.

    > both are known to produce reliable results in the
    > hands of a skilled operator.

    True, but how can you judge my skill or lack thereof,
    sitting there reading a text-only NG postings (other
    than simply saying if I get underexposures it is expost
    facto my problem)? Again, please see my comments to you
    and others about operator error.

    There isn't anything magical about pointing the camera
    at the car and getting "good" results! "Great" results
    takes much more work, but I don't think I'm all that
    bad, and I do not expect "exceptional" results.
    Exposures +/- 1-2 stops would be fine for my purposes.
    And, again, why can a $150 Kodak P&S do much better in
    identical situations to a Nikon 8800 and SB-800 flash?

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  44. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > And, again, why can a $150 Kodak P&S do much better in
    > identical situations to a Nikon 8800 and SB-800 flash?

    The SB800 seems to lack the ability to automatically set exposure by
    pure distance (guide number). I'd consider that a deficiency, though
    it's apparently not a problem all that much of the time. You happen
    to be in one of the weird situations where it's a problem. The
    workaround is to set the exposure manually.

    I don't know what the Kodak is doing. Maybe it's using GN for
    exposure setting. Maybe it's simply firing its flash at full power
    because the subject is beyond its "good" flash range and it can't
    think of anything better to do, and using full power turns out to be
    optimal.

    You're beginning to sound like some kind of troll. OK, you've tried
    the automatic modes and they're not doing what you want. That's why
    the manual modes are there. Use them and stop whining.
  45. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Paul Rubin commented courteously...

    > You're beginning to sound like some kind of troll.

    So now I'm a troll because I don't choose to follow your
    advice? And, if I were a troll - which I'm not - why
    have you been so easy to hook?

    > you've tried the automatic modes and they're not doing
    > what you want. That's why the manual modes are there.
    > Use them and stop whining.

    I'm not "whining". Once more, since you obviously don't
    comprende Anglais, I originally asked for advice on what
    to try for /better/ results, /not/ for Photography 101.
    You've yet to "advise" anything new to me, other than
    ever-increasing personal criticism.

    It's like an off-hand comment I made about PSP 9 vs.
    PSE. It's as if the dam broke loose! I really don't care
    who uses what graphics app nor do I care what camera
    people like to use for their own needs/wants nor do I
    care if people think that shooting at less than 8MP
    makes me "the village idiot".

    Think and do whatever pleases you. I'm gone...

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  46. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > Think and do whatever pleases you. I'm gone...

    Don't let the door hit you on the butt on the way out.
  47. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > I discovered only recently that upping the ISO on my 5700 from 100
    > to 200 or 400 produces /much/ better flash pictures, albeit with
    > significantly more noise.

    If upping the ISO works, you may be underpowered.

    > Your experience is superior to mine, but I can't accept
    > it completely since my crummy old Fuji worked so well.
    > Even my wife's Kodak $150 6330 worked well at the WPC
    > side-by-side with the 5700 and 8800 (so long as I stayed
    > under its 10' flash range).

    But if the feeble built-in strobes P&S cameras gives enough
    light, then there should be enough power in the external
    guns you've used!

    Anyway - I would suggest you try to go fully manual.
    Shoot with 100% flash power and the largest aperture.
    If it still is underexposed, then your flash is not
    powerful enough and you need a more powerful flash.

    If it is overexposed, just close down the aperture until the
    exposure is right.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  48. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    Gisle Hannemyr commented courteously...


    > If upping the ISO works, you may be underpowered.

    Underpowered? Are you joking?

    The Sunpak 433D's GN=120! And, the SB-800 GN=100. That
    gives a theoretical range with either of in excess of 30
    feet! The /max/ I shoot cars in museums is a paltry 12-
    15' The problem is, for reasons I haven't been able to
    determine, that the flash pulse shuts down prematurely.
    And, please, no more talk about glare "confusing" the
    TTL sensor!
    >
    >> Your experience is superior to mine, but I can't
    accept
    >> it completely since my crummy old Fuji worked so
    well.
    >> Even my wife's Kodak $150 6330 worked well at the WPC
    >> side-by-side with the 5700 and 8800 (so long as I
    stayed
    >> under its 10' flash range).
    >
    > But if the feeble built-in strobes P&S cameras gives
    enough
    > light, then there should be enough power in the
    external
    > guns you've used!

    Yes, so what?

    > Anyway - I would suggest you try to go fully manual.
    > Shoot with 100% flash power and the largest aperture.
    > If it still is underexposed, then your flash is not
    > powerful enough and you need a more powerful flash.

    Now you're having the same comprehension problem as
    "Paul". What part of "it didn't work on manual" don't
    you understand? I try to read what posters say /in their
    entirety/ before I "run off at the mouth" with a reply.
    You're now mis-replying when I just previously clarified
    the exact point you're refuting.

    > If it is overexposed, just close down the aperture
    until
    > the exposure is right.

    Never got overexposures unless I was way off on distance
    or simply mis-set the aperture/shutter.

    --
    ATM, aka Jerry
  49. Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

    All Things Mopar <noneofyour@busi.ness> writes:
    > To be as sure as I could be, I reset both the SB-800 and the 8800 to
    > factory defaults and reshot a series. Total junk. From an operator
    > error standpoint, what obvious thing(s) am I missing here?

    The car is shiny. Both in auto and iTTL mode, the SB-800
    measures the light reflected back from the object - it then
    uses this reflected light to compute how much power the flash
    should output. (Canon's E-TTL system work in a similar fashion.)

    If the car is shiny, the flash see itself reflected back as
    from a mirror, and believe the scene is much brighter than it
    actually is, resulting in an underexposure.

    The consumer P&S cameras you've mentioned has flash systems that are
    much less sophisticated than Nikon's and Canon's dedicated systems.
    Their flash output is not adjusted based upon reflected light.
    This results - in this case - in a more correct exposure.

    If the above is what happens, the solution is to switch to
    manual. That will "turn off" the iTTL logic and in effect
    turn the SB-800 into a "stupid" flash like those you find
    as the built-in flash in cheap consumer digicams.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
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