hello everyone...can you help with some questions?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by rickztahone, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. rickztahone

    rickztahone TPF Noob!

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    hi, my name is Ricardo. i bought an Olympus E-420 a few months back and i really enjoy using the camera. i have read a couple of books that deal with SLR cameras as well as my manual. i also purchased a zoom lens that extends to 150mm. some of the questions i have off the top of my head would have to deal with taking pictures in dark situations. i always find myself increasing the ISO and i get image noise which is a pain. i really do not like using the built in flash because i feel like it washes out the subject(s). any tips to avoid this? should i be taking pictures in aperture priority or shutter priority in such a situations? anyways, the two main reasons for me purchasing an SLR was for taking better pictures of my daughter and also of my fish tank. the aquarium pictures have proven to be a complete PITA because they move so much. i increase the shutter speed but i'm not getting the pictures i want. i try messing with the white balance as well but it does not really improve the lighting either. i find that i can't really zoom in as much as i want to because the camera will not focus on the subject and will not get as close as i want it to. just yesterday i purchased a macro attachment to help me with closer pics but after reading the reviews and such i think it might have been a bad idea, lol. it says that it's best with manual focus and that is one thing i have had a problem with. well i hate to rant on so i'll stop here and hopefully get some great tips. i have read some of the posts so far and it is very informative. here's a sample picture of my fish (which i need help on).
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    that image had to be cropped and i used some editing software as well to try to fix the colors to closer match the natural color of the fish. thank you for reading
     
  2. Steph

    Steph No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Hi Ricardo and welcome to TPF.

    When available light is low you have a few options:
    - Use a lens with a wide aperture (also called a fast lens) to gather more light. The problem with that is that these lenses are usually quite expensive and if light levels are really low, it won't be enough.
    - Increase the ISO but as you noticed yourself, this considerably increase the noise level, particularly on a camera such as the E-420, which is known for its poor performance at high ISO compared to the competition.
    - Use an external flash (such as the FL36-R or FL50-R). You can use them off camera so you can place the light source where you want. That might be a good option for you fish tanks and portraits of your daughter.

    As for shooting close-ups, there are some special lenses called macro lenses, with which you can focus on your subject even if you get very close. Again they can be pricey.
     
  3. rickztahone

    rickztahone TPF Noob!

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    thank you very much Steph, really appreciate it. when i got the camera it was really on a whim and i didn't have much time to research it. so far, i have been happy with it because i'm not really after professional pictures. as you said, i have noticed that at higher ISO it does affect the quality of the picture in a major way. i just couldn't pass up the price tag of the E-420 ($375 w/ lens). i did get a macro lens but i have yet to get it in the mail. it is a Raynox DCR-250 Super Macro Conversion Lens. hopefully the macro lens will help with the aquarium pics. would you suggest i stick with shutter priority with a higher shutter speed or should i switch up to aperature priority or manual focus? the dart around quite a bit which is why i had the shutter so fast. when i am outside around the evening time it takes superb pictures, at least comparitevely to what i am use to. moving up from a regular P-A-S has been the best thing i have ever done and i'm not looking back. i never use the auto settings but at times it hinders the potential of a picture i think. hopefully reading up here can help me with basic tips that i might have missed reading from the manual. ​
     
  4. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    As far as not washing out subjects with the in camera flash, I would hope the E-420 has a manual mode for the flash so you can reduced the power output. On my Nikons I usuallykeep the flash in manual mode and set at the 1/64 power level.

    Again, not being familiar with the E-420, I was wondering if it has a high ISO NR (Noise Reduction) feature you can turn on in the camera menus.
     
  5. rickztahone

    rickztahone TPF Noob!

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    yes i have both but i usually do not turn it down to 1/64, i will try that for sure next time. also, i have seen the noise reduction but i wasn't too sure what it was for, i will mess with that feature as well. thank you
     

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