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  1. #1
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    Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    I am new to photography and I'm trying to learn how to use my own settings instead of the pre-set buttons on my Nikon D3000. I am going crazy in the process. No ONE manner of explanation does the trick for me. It takes me reading a bazillion different websites and watching lots of videos to pick up little pieces here and there. The hardest part for me seems to be memorizing how the values affect the photos (numbers going up sometimes do the opposite of what my brain wants to think they will do, ie with the light). Also, while I think I have conquered ISO (keep that one lowest unless absolutely necessary to get more light?), I have no idea how to use the aperture/speed combinations, and the biggest thing I don't get, is how these are affected by my 3 lenses. Mainly the 55-200 and 70-300. If anyone has a tidbit of knowledge to toss in, please do. Every little bit helps, and I never know when that dawning moment will finally hit me. The more simplified, the better, it seems!

  2. #2
    Member gryphonslair99's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size


  3. #3
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    Thank you!

  4. #4
    Senior Member armando_m's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    if you can, take a picture of the numbers on the third mystery lens and share with us ... we'll be able to help you better

  5. #5
    They call me P-Wac JETA's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    I just replied in another thread you started. I was right where you are at now years ago. You have to learn how to read your lens specs. Once you know the limitations of your lenses, it will start to come together for you.
    It's not blurry. It's bokeh.

    Canon EOS 1D Mark IV
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    Canon 24-70mm EF f/2.8L
    Canon 24-105mm EF f/4L IS
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    Canon 17-40mm EF f/4L
    Canon 15mm F/2.8 EF Fisheye Lens
    Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
    Canon 50mm f/1.8
    Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite
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  6. #6
    They call me P-Wac JETA's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    It's not blurry. It's bokeh.

    Canon EOS 1D Mark IV
    Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    Canon EOS 1D Mark III
    Canon 24-70mm EF f/2.8L
    Canon 24-105mm EF f/4L IS
    Canon Zoom Telephoto EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
    Canon 17-40mm EF f/4L
    Canon 15mm F/2.8 EF Fisheye Lens
    Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
    Canon 50mm f/1.8
    Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite
    Canon 580EX Speedlite
    Canon EOS Rebel 300D

  7. #7
    They call me P-Wac JETA's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    aaaaaaaaaannnnnnnnnnnnnnd, one more book recommendation.

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0817463003
    It's not blurry. It's bokeh.

    Canon EOS 1D Mark IV
    Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    Canon EOS 1D Mark III
    Canon 24-70mm EF f/2.8L
    Canon 24-105mm EF f/4L IS
    Canon Zoom Telephoto EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
    Canon 17-40mm EF f/4L
    Canon 15mm F/2.8 EF Fisheye Lens
    Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro
    Canon 50mm f/1.8
    Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite
    Canon 580EX Speedlite
    Canon EOS Rebel 300D

  8. #8
    project forum co-moderator Frog's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    If you are wanting to use the dreaded "M" for manual, just keep your eye on the viewfinder.
    Not sure how it shows in the 3000 but there should be a series of green dots that are either to left or right of center. If you change aperture from 3,5 to 8.0, you should see the green go to the left or below the center line. If you go opposite, you should see the dots go the other way. Close to center is where you want them as this is proper exposure for the scene.
    The same thing will happen if you change shutter speed. Increasing the speed will move the line left and decreasing the speed will move them right. Try to find the aperture and shutter speed that keeps you close to center or proper exposure.
    I'm not sure if that is what you need to know but hope it helps.
    Keep Shooting!

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  9. #9
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    My 2 cents worth

    First step is to compose your image. This includes picking the focal length of the lens so that at your chosen shooting distance you include just the right amount of your subject.

    Second step is to choose your shutter speed (largely dependent on the focal length you have chosen) so that you will get an image that is not blurred due to subject movement or due to camera shake:

    - at least 1/125s to freeze subject movement (faster if the subject is moving fast. 1/400s for a propellor-driven airplane, for example)
    - at least 1/the focal length of the lens to avoid camera shake

    Choose the faster of the two. For instance if using a lens at 200mm then use at least 1/200s rather than 1/125s

    Third step is to choose the aperture so that the depth-of-field is enough to have all the important subject matter is focus. Obviously you choose an aperture that your lens can actually do (no bigger than f4 on most of your lenses)

    Last step - set the ISO so that for the shutter speed and aperture that you have chosen the sensor will receive just the right amount of light.

    Reality check: often for indoors shooting in poor light you discover that your camera can't do a high enough ISO to do what you want. Not many solutions:

    1. Move in closer so that you can use a shorter focal length and slower shutter speed
    2. Get a lens with a wider maximum aperture. A 50mm f1.8 at f2 captures 4 times more light than than your 55-200 at 55mm f4
    3. Get a camera that can go to higher ISO
    Charles

    Nikon D800, D7200, Sony RX100m3
    Not buying any more gear this year. I hope

  10. #10
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    I'm also new and learned through reading books (Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson, etc.), internet sites, and getting out and shooting. Nothing really clicked until I actually got out and started shooting.

  11. #11
    Junior Member emoxley's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    Here's some sites that should help. This first one is an interactive page, that will help with shutter vs aperture. It shows how one affects the other, and lets you make changes so you can see how the other is affected: Sim-Cam - The online camera exposure simulation

    These are sites the instructor of a night class I took, gave us to check out on nights we didn't have class.
    Using Your Digital Camera-Contents
    Take better photos: Digital photography tips and ideas - HP Digital Photography Center
    Exposure
    http://digital-photography-school.com/
    Digital Photography Tutorials
    http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography...mls/depth.html
    Digital photography tutorials & free online digital photography instruction
    Focus on Photography - Composition

    Each site will have some of the same info that the site before it had. The way one site explains it may be easier to understand than another site. So, check them out. The best teacher is practice. You can use "Auto" setting too, and see what settings the camera used, and then use those settings for some other pics, under similar light and circumstances.

    I use the auto white balance on my camera, and shoot 90% of my pictures on the Aperture Priority mode setting. Depending on what depth of field (DOF) I want in a picture, I'll set my f-stop, and let the camera choose the shutter speed by what it meters for the light. To use Manual mode, you really need to understand how each setting is going to affect the others, and know pretty well how the picture is going to come out. For this reason, I think most people use Aperture Priority mode most of the time. Of course, for long exposures, and stop action shots, you'll need to use Shutter Priority mode. I hope this helps some. Play with the first site I linked to, with being able to interact with the aperture and shutter settings. Good luck!
    Gripped Nikon D7000~Nikkor 18-105mm~Tamron 70-300mm VC~Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Macro~SB-900~Ring Light

  12. #12
    Junior Member magi48's Avatar
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    The strongest strength of digital cameras is the ability to constantly take pictures. You don't like your results, toss the picture. Shoot again. Photography is all about light. Practice taking pictures with your smallest lens first. Play with the dials. Experiment!

  13. #13
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    Re: Aperture, speed, ISO and lens size

    Quote Originally Posted by magi48 View Post
    The strongest strength of digital cameras is the ability to constantly take pictures. You don't like your results, toss the picture. Shoot again. Photography is all about light. Practice taking pictures with your smallest lens first. Play with the dials. Experiment!
    Can't help but agree with that.

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