Nikon Coolpix 5700 help/advice

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by wtdedula, Apr 12, 2007.

  1. wtdedula

    wtdedula TPF Noob!

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    Hello All;
    I purchased the Coolpix 5700 and SB-50DX Speedlight to hopefully take better pictures in more difficult situations but for all of the time I've had it, I really couldn't come close to getting the results I'd like. I have purchased several photography books which explain the basics of how DSLR-type cameras work and I think I understand the basics but still can't get the results I'd like. I wonder if some of you who have this camera (And perhaps Speedlight) may be able to offer me some useful tips to get better results. Or even if you don't have my equipment, perhaps you still have suggestions.

    This is actually a 2-part question.

    First, the location I am taking pictures is inside a large exhibit hall. I have tried the fully automatic mode and also some of the manual settings and when using the Speedlight or even the built-in flash, my closeups are always way overexposed. I have experimented with different aparture settings and shutter speeds but my pictures are still overexposed. Anyone have any suggestions about what I can try to get better results ? I also don't understand how the Speedlight works with the camera and what the various settings on the Speedlight does though I have experimented with various power settings but without success.

    And the second part of my question is this ... One of the things I am trying to take a picture of is a screen with a projected image on it along with people around it. If I use a flash, the people come out fine but the projected image on the screen is washed out which seems perfectly logical. I can take a long exposure with no flash but then everyone has to stand perfectly still or the image is blurred which also makes sense. Is there any way to get this image to come out good (people and screen exposed properly) using a short exposure of perhaps 1/60th of a second?
    Thanks for any advice you can provide on either or both issues.
    Tim
     
  2. StreetShark

    StreetShark TPF Noob!

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    Well, first the Coolpix 5700 isn't a DSLR, Second you don't always need flash. so for the first one don't use flash and try a setting that allows you to aether change shutter speed or aperture and sets the other on its own. Thats all I can as I'm also new to photography.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    When shooting with flash, there are actually two exposures...one is the ambient exposure (result of shutter speed and aperture) and the 2nd is the flash exposure (result of flash power and aperture).

    With a dedicated flash and TTL metering, the flash will match it's output to the aperture you are using...so to change the exposure from the flash, you need to adjust FEC (flash exposure compensation). Adjusting the shutter speed will change the ambient exposure...but probably won't change the exposure of a flash lit subject (except for motion blur etc.)

    In your second question...if the screen is far enough away that the flash won't affect it...you could set the aperture and shutter speed to expose for the screen, then use the flash to expose the people. If that's not possible, you may need to blend two exposures together for the final image.

    As for the first question...can you show us some examples with the related details? That would help us diagnose the problem.
     
  4. Zatodragon

    Zatodragon TPF Noob!

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    I forgot if the speedlight 50 can bounce, but if you can bounce it from a ceiling or wall, that will solve a lot of your problems right there, plus having really nice lighting effects! But if a ceiling is too high, it won't work. Diffusion screens might also help a good deal.
     
  5. wtdedula

    wtdedula TPF Noob!

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    Hello All;
    Thanks for all of your helpful suggestions.

    Following Big Mike's suggestion, I was going to post some attachments but I can't see any way to do that. Keep in mind that I just subscribed to this forum this morning. Do I need to post a specific number of messages before being rewarded with the ability to post attachments ? I actually had some fairly decent results today setting the shutter speed to 400 and turning off the flash. When I took te pictures the camera indicated that the shutter speed was 1/15 and after looking at the pictures, they didn't seem blurry which is a good thing. If you can tell me how to post pictures, I can attach some examples. I am actually out of town at a museum where I am going to take pictures tomorrow (Friday) and Saturday so suggestions would be helpful. Also, Big Mike, from your post, it seems like you really know this stuff but you may need to simplify things for me as I am a beginner. Thanks a lot. - Tim
     
  6. wtdedula

    wtdedula TPF Noob!

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    In response to your question, Zatodragon, Yes ... my flash can bounce I believe (It does swivel upward) but for the museum I am at today through Saturday, the ceiling seems too high and it didn't seem to work when I tried it today. So unless I'm missing something, I don't think I can use this for this weekend's event.

    Tim
     
  7. wtdedula

    wtdedula TPF Noob!

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    Hello all;
    OK I think I figured out how to post photos.

    This picture seemed to turn out pretty good but it is technically closer than most of my photos will be ...

    http://news.webshots.com/photo/2348146790030076408lLajTg

    The next two photos are a more appropriate distance but they turned out a bit too dark...

    http://news.webshots.com/photo/2502932940030076408szgtnY

    http://news.webshots.com/photo/2836512950030076408Oaufyv

    These are both taken with the Nikon Coolpix 5700, shuttler speed of 400, and no flash. Lighting in the museum is on the dark side (We turned a few of the overhead lights off so guests would see the display well).

    Tim
     

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