Pack of Nooblet Questions

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by GTX, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. GTX

    GTX TPF Noob!

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    I've been reading here in TPF about all kinds of stuff. I recently purchased a Nikon D60 and have been LOVING it. I had a point-and-shoot Kodak for awhile to get used to photography stuff and finally saved up enough for a nice, GOOD camera.

    Now I feel I haven't learned enough <.<

    I have several questions and, while some were answered on TPF already, there's some I'm either not quite clear on, and a few that just didn't seem to fit / apply to my predicaments.

    So, I hope someone could answer my questions or at least point me to an anti-nooblet guide. :)

    To start, a few questions with terms and such:

    How exactly does ISO settings effect a picture? I'm trying to figure out what ISO settings are best for particular scenes. Would something of an ISO 1600 be great for a dark scene, or would I be better off increasing the exposure time or aperture setting to produce a brighter image? (For slow or non moving objects, for example.) I know I would need a faster shutter speed to catch a fast moving object (car or a plane, let's say), so would it be better to increase the ISO in such a case?

    I know that the f/# represents the aperture setting on a lense, but that's ALL I know about it. Why does the aperture get larger with a smaller number? What does the number actually represent? How would I be able to visualize the size of the aperture based on that number?

    One question is for my camera particularly, in which case I've either missed this answer in the guide that came with it or I'm just blind: Why does the aperture limit change (min/max) even though I'm using the same lense (AF-S Nikkor 18-55 1:3.5-5.6G). (Secondly to this, what does the last part mean: 1:3.5-5.6G?)

    Lastly, and probably the biggest, question I have: What's the best zoom I can get for under $500? I want a nice, good lense that can capture high speed (I like air shows... which will be the primary use... and I would LOVE to capture aircraft upclose in high-speed flight). I've read some stuff here on TPF already and have seen some reccomendations, such as a
    NIKON Nikkor AF 80-200mm/F2.8 ED or a Sigma 70-200 F2.8... but I'm not sure if those would be best for air show stuff. It's unlikely that I will be using a zoom lense at night, as my 18-55 is decent, but that possibility still remains.

    I think I would still have the primary focuses of being able to handle a fast shutter speed and the largest aperture possible for high-speed shots when it comes to a new lense.

    I hope I didn't bombard you guys with too many questions at once. Tell me I need to read the forums more, and I will. I want to get good at this stuff. I'm going to post some pictures I took of the recent air show I was at (Dayton, OH) to get some C & C, so, expect those soon :)

    Cheers!
     
  2. eterrisinCYQX

    eterrisinCYQX TPF Noob!

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    ISO, as I understand it, is your cameras sensitivity to light. High ISO allows faster shutter speeds and smaller apertures but allows more grain and vice versa. Your aperture changes throughout the zoom because of your lenses construction (maybe someone else can elaborate). Finally, my only concern about the Sigma would be if it's long enough.
     
  3. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    Yw
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
  4. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    First look up or get a book on exposure. As its a very large subject. But here is the extreme short course.

    ISO, Shutter speed, and Aperture settings are part of the exposure triangle. All three affect propper exposure. Basically ISO is how sensitive film or the digital sensor is to light. Shutter speed determines how long light is allowed to shine on the film or sensor. Aperture determines the quantity of light hitting the film or sensor. Each one affects exposure. But each one has its own different effect on the picture as well. Deppending on how you want your picture to look determines which one to adjust. Also in some cases you may need to adjust 2 or all 3.

    Shutter controls stop action. A slow shutter allows the picture to show movement. A fast shutter make things moving, look like they are standing still. For your example of a plane flying, a fast shutter will make it look like its standing still. A slower shutter will make it look like its in motion. But if too slow, it will be just a blur.

    A large aperture (smaller number like f/3.3 on your lens) has a small depth of field (DOF- this is the area of sharp focus in the scene). A small aperture (larger number like f/22 on your lens) has a very large DOF. Best way to describe DOF is in a scene you are taking a picture of a fence say 20' long with one end close to you and the other end far away from you. If you focus on the most middle picket 10' from you. With a large aperture F/3.3 you may only get pickets 9' to 11' from you in sharp focus. The rest closer and farther from that middle area will be out of focus. Now if you choose a smaller aperture say f/22 on your lens. You may now get all of the fence pickets in focus except for maybe the very closest ones to the camera. So, basically aperture determines the range of what will be in sharp focus. Basically aperture is a hole in the back of the lens that lets light through. The smaller the number the bigger the hole. The bigger the number the smaller the hole.

    ISO is the sensitivity to light. The larger the number the more sensitive to light it is. So, why not always use the highest ISO? Well there is a draw back. For film to be very light sensitive it has to have large grains in its makeup. The larger they are the more sensitive it is. But when you print the picture, it looks grainy (smooth things don't look so smooth). In digital when you use higher ISO's the picture comes out with more noise (equavillent to grain in a picture). So this is unwanted. Basically you try to find a happy medium. Obviously the lowest ISO setting will produce the smoothest / less noise in a picture. But becasue its not as sensitive to light, you have to make adjustments to other areas.

    So, exposure is adjusting the 3 elements (shutter, aperture, ISO) to get the results desired in the final basic roduct - the picture.

    As for your lens. F/3.3 - f/5.6 is the max aperture you lens has (the largest the aperture will open). Now because of the way the lens is designed. As you zoom from 18mm going towards 55mm. The aperture gets smaller. At 18mm your largest aperture size is f/3.3. As you zoom out, and get to 55mm the largest aperture size is f/5.6. Basically as you zoom out, the aperture hole gets smaller.

    As for the telephoto zoom lens. A 70-200 f/2.8 is a good lens. Since you want to take airshow pictures maybe, a good fast lens will help. A fast lens means it has a large aperture. A f/2.8 lens is fast. A f/1.4 lens is faster (lets more light in over the f/2.8). A f/5.6 lens is considered a slow lens. Now these are max apertures - the widest opening the lens has. As all of them have a f/5.6 setting. But with a lens that has f/5.6 as its largest size, it doesn't let in as much light as a lens with f/2.8 as its maximum.

    This is really just the tip of the ice burg. As entire books are written on just exposure.
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Check out Wikipedia for specifics on aperture and other technical aspects of photography like ISO, shutter speed, white balance, depth-of-field, rule of thirds, etc.

    Google and other search engines are good for locating informational resources and TPF has an embedded search feature found at the top right of each forum page.

    Here's a good informational resource I found using my favorite Internet search engine
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
  6. GTX

    GTX TPF Noob!

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    Sweetness. You all have given me a ton to read for the next few days. This will definitely help out a ton :D

    I'm going to go read all this 10 times over before I even THINK about having any more questions.

    Thanks, and cheers!

    Edit: I posted up some pictures I've taken in This thread. ^.^

    And this reading has been VERY helpful. Thanks again :D
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
  7. GTX

    GTX TPF Noob!

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    Ok, from working keeping me busy and such, I've now been able to get through pretty much both those sites KmH mentioned and got it all through my head. Now I'm on to lenses.

    Since I have an idea of what kind of lense I would need (Fast, such as f/2.8 or better, from my understanding), and the size (75-300 with a 2x teleconverter, possibly), all I need to know now, for now, is where to find some stuff like this online for good prices.

    So far I know of the following sites: Ritzcamera.com, Porters.com, and Newegg.com (Where I actually got the camera from). Would those be pretty good at looking for new lenses, or where else could I look?
     
  8. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    Amazon.com
    Google.com
    Camera Price Buster - UKs cheapest camera gear (great for finding the cheapest retail price... that isn't from an independent shop.)
    Ebay.com

    I recommend finding what lens' you want to use then search EVERYWHERE for the best price, mark them all down, then go to your local Camera shop ( Independent shops, none of this B&H and Jessops crap, shops for photographers, ran by real photographers are better... supply them with your prices and ask if they can beat the price, if not just say okay thanks bye, buy it online and be done with it :)
     
  9. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Aperture is "the ratio of focal length to effective aperture diameter."

    You do not need to know the "size of the aperture based on the aperture number" since it is a ratio. In other words, for the same F-stop number such as F/4, the actual aperture size of the 50mm lens is different from a 85mm lens.

    Why the smaller the aperture number, the bigger the aperture?
    Well F/4 vs F/12, actually it is 1/4 vs 1/12, which number is larger?
     
  10. GTX

    GTX TPF Noob!

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    Out of all this, I think I'm good. This has pretty much got me up and going in the basics (and seems like slightly advanced) of nice, shiny, expensive cameras.

    Now, my next goal: To get and know you people.

    I'll be lurking the forums more. :D
     
  11. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    Oh god, thankyou for not being one of those people who ask a question then leave!!!
    Those people are so ignorant :).
     
  12. boogschd

    boogschd TPF Noob!

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    +1
     

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