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Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by dejongj, May 25, 2005.

  1. dejongj

    dejongj
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    I found myself to have to stay an unexpected other night away from home, bored in my hotel room with nothing to read. So I started reading the manual for my camera (Nikon D70 but inmaterial to the point I think...)

    Wow, why didn't I do it before. The manual looks quite daunting, boring, etc. yet has got a wealth of information for ultimate control over the camera. I've just been sitting down and trying the various manual settings plus P, A, S programs and really noticed the different effects.

    I think the time was probably right after 2 months ownership of my camera to start pushing the creativity. I wouldn't have realised it earlier....

    The general point is; I can really advice anyone to after a while of point and shoot with crossed fingers (Lotto style) to take the time...You may be ready for it as well...The d-SLR isn't as daunting as it first seem and I am really happy I made the step...

    On a more specific note regarding the Nikon D70. I am really pleased with the user interface and assistance (warnings) it is providing. The two control commands work really well together to avoid using the menu, and I know see the real advantage to having the LCD info panel at the top. And most of all now understand why the camera sometimes is display LO or HI and how to correct it...Would I be on my way to less post process corrections in RAW, or just like a golfer have a lucky streak now? LOL That is a retorical question...

    PLEASE Don't turn this into a my controls are better than your camera thread...I would just love to hear from other digital camera newbie's who are venturing into manual control and discover happiness with their camera....

    Regards,
     
  2. mr jones

    mr jones
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    i didnt so much read the manual ( i tend to skim read it - im male, i can program a video recorder thus i dont need a manual for anything)

    i started in automatic mode, then i realised i wanted more control over the apature, so set it to apature priority, i then got stuck in a venue with a bright blue light behind the subject and this totally screwed the camera up, it kept wanting to hold the shutter open to long, so i tapped it onto manual and started to use the light meter to control the exposure, and learnt that way. :)


    manuals are useful when learning "wot button do's wot" :D :clap:
     
  3. seany

    seany
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    "The general point is; I can really advice anyone to after a while of point and shoot with crossed fingers (Lotto style) to take the time...You may be ready for it as well...The d-SLR isn't as daunting as it first seem and I am really happy I made the step..."

    Goes without saying that's only if they have any interest in doing so;)






    I went from a point and shoot to dslr in about 15 months. I did have hold of a Nikon D100 for a bout six of those 15 months, which "witters" ended up buying on this forum. I never really used it that much, and when i did i never really knew what i was doing, never new anything about aperture/ lenses ect. Still never knew anything after i sold it (wasn't mine)

    I had no plans of buying one when i bought a more manual digi cam the canon S1. But i liked the more manual control it had over my ixus and i started to learn more about aperture and shutter speeds and what was needed where ect. Also made me realise it's limitations like the IS was very handy for low light but was no good for moving subjects, and iso 400 was hardly great and noisy above 200.

    So, i started to think that i wanted more, and when jessops agreed to give me a credit note for the S1 (if i bought a 20D) after canon repaired it because of a fault. I put it towards the 20D and i'm really glad i did. Pretty much know what lenses suit me best after months of research, know what’s needed where ect, had no idea before.

    Lenses, well what can i say. Just been fantastic doing the research and learning all about them.

    I've had my camera for about 7 months and pretty much know it inside out. What i really need to do now is get to grips with RAW, i've never even used it yet!!! yep that's bad.. a couple of 1g cards on the way is going to change that;) Then i think lighting will be my next venture. A photography course eventually, just opened me up to a hole new world


    [One thing i'd like to say is, this is about people who have bought a dslr and want to share their experiences about their learning process, it's not about digi cams V dslrs, that's pointless , I’m not going to let dejongj’s thread turn in to that so if you’ve no interest in dslrs there’s no need to post]
     
  4. dejongj

    dejongj
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    Interesting to see the different paths we all take...I think I understand RAW and the potential power it has, though making that statement immediately proves the opposite if you belief in the theory of knowledge domains....

    Anyway, RAW helped me overcome the mistakes and lack of understanding in exposure and whitebalance. But it does make the postprocessing more lengthy and thus less time to photograph and create a backlog...Adjusting the curves and white balance 'corrections' and exposure in camera is starting to reduce the need for RAW...

    Lighting is a also on my horizon, though a long way off...I've got an external speedlight which in auto mode produces some great results, much better than I get with the built-in one; i.e. no shine and controlled shadows (or not at all when desired)...However I am no where near brave enough to explore the manual modes...Mine came with a nice glossy picture brochure of what you can achieve, but I don't quite understand it yet....

    I am enjoying the learning process though, very much so...
     
  5. seany

    seany
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    You can afford to be brave when you can afford to fail, that's the thing about digital. you can see where you went wrong and it wont cost you anything. Ok dont try it out a your childs 1st birthday say but do it in the garden your lounge ect..


    I just started researching right away what shutter speeds/aperture/iso were best suited to a given subject and just tried them. Another great thing to do is check the exifs on Pbase out of your camera and lenses combo ect and copy them to see how they turn out for you
     
  6. tomson

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    I've always used fully manual - I came from using manual film slrs, learned to use them in college as part of a course - never really saw the point of buying a dslr and using it like a point and shoot. But... i have (in the past year or so i guess) started using aperture priority quite a bit if i'm just taking snaps.

    The most useful tool when shooting manual, for me, is the histogram and understanding what it's telling me about the shot i've just taken - i'd really miss not having it now.
     
  7. dejongj

    dejongj
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    It definitely makes it easier to adopt the learn-by-doing approach. I tend to be a bit picky or focussed as I like to call it and understand one subject fully before I move on to the next so that my foundation is solid. I attribute that to my Montessori education...

    @Tomson: Sounds like you had a good base before you moved into d-SLR. Are you sure you can't get the histogram after you shot? I'm certain that the 350D is providing that view option. Maybe be a case of reading the manual to understand what the buttons are doing as MrJones said...
     
  8. HotblackDesiato

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    Understanding the histogram, and getting to grips with the differences between linear and corrected gamma have probably been the biggest hurdles in my transfer from scanned slides to getting the best from dSLR...and where i wish i read more sooner rather than later. ;-)
     
  9. ASH1

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    Hi Tomson, same here I went from a film slr and used mostly manual controls. I've also done courses for B&W and colour using the dark room for developing. I now shoot about 95% raw with my 350D.

    ASH1
     
  10. tomson

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    i think you mis-read my post
     
  11. dejongj

    dejongj
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    Yep you are quite right, stayed up too late or woke up to early....Oh why is the English grammar the other way around from Dutch? That is a retorical question....
     
  12. SeaneyC

    SeaneyC
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    Still learning the ins and outs of my new Canon, it has so many more options and settings, it's hard to know where to start. I've had it for almost a month now, and think i have just about got the controls working how i want, now i can actually begin experimenting!! Am going to try pushing the histogram to the right which is supposed to be the surefire way to be able to get the best out of my sensor, although i mainly shoot Jpeg when i'm photographing motorsport (90% of my photos) so there will be less chance of recovery compared to RAW. Off to more racing this weekend, so am looking forward to a first proper experimentation.
     
  13. seany

    seany
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    I'm still reading up on dynamic range

    Taken from
    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml

    This realization carries with it a number of important lessons, the most important of them being that if you do not use the right-hand fifth of the histogram for recording some of your image you are in fact wasting fully half of the available encoding levels of your camera



    That shocked me when i first read it.
     
  14. mr jones

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    try taking pictures in near dark conditions with varying strength lights flashinga around you and no flash, then you realise the use of raw :)
     
  15. seany

    seany
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    Jamie mate i know you're right, it was cost of the cam and a lust for lenses that stoped me getting some decent cards sooner, but i'm sorting it. I do take photos in clubs and bars with varying forms of light, and i need what RAW offers big time.
     

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