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Thread: How to reduce heat shimmer (mirage efect) on hot days.

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    Member cr500's Avatar
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    How to reduce heat shimmer (mirage efect) on hot days.

    OK, I realise with summer coming, it will be hard to get away from heat shimmer or mirage effects when zooming in on long shot on hot days, but I was wondering if there were any tips on how to reduce the scintillations? Would any filters make heat shimmer less obvious? Conversely, if we wanted to increase the heat shimmer (mirage) effect on a day when there is not much mirage around even when zoomed a fair bit, are there any certain filters which would make the heat shimmer more visible?

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Three Qs here: reducing heat haze/shimmer; increasing it; dealing with "scintillations".
    Scintillations are bright lights, usually like sparks, so I don;t think they apply at all.

    I can start with reducing heat haze shimmer...
    First, since it's ever-present as unstable air over hot surfaces, try to avoid the latter. (Open slather, I know.)
    Then, if you must photograph through it, remember that telephoto lenses will magnify (ie, actually enlarge) the
    image of the unstable air, and so, any subject through it.

    A high shutter speed will only freeze the distorted image, and a lower one will only blur the same image. So,
    shorter focal lengths for, if not full avoidance of, photographing the subject.

    Alternatively, just shoot the scene as is.

    To filters and the like as a means of reducing heat haze: none that I know of, and unlikely in light of the foregoing.

    And finally, what's all this malarky about summer coming? - A quick trip to the Northern hemisphere should fix that.

    Actual finally: thread moved to General Shooting Help.
    Last edited by ameerat42; 04-11-2016 at 7:56pm.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    Three Qs here: reducing heat haze/shimmer; increasing it; dealing with "scintillations".
    Scintillations are bright lights, usually like sparks, so I don;t think they apply at all.

    I can start with reducing heat haze shimmer...
    First, since it's ever-present as unstable air over hot surfaces, try to avoid the latter. (Open slather, I know.)
    Then, if you must photograph through it, remember that telephoto lenses will magnify (ie, actually enlarge) the
    image of the unstable air, and so, any subject through it.

    A high shutter speed will only freeze the distorted image, and a lower one will only blur the same image. So,
    shorter focal lengths for, if not full avoidance of, photographing the subject.

    Alternatively, just shoot the scene as is.

    To filters and the like as a means of reducing heat haze: none that I know of, and unlikely in light of the foregoing.

    And finally, what's all this malarky about summer coming? - A quick trip to the Northern hemisphere should fix that.

    Actual finally: thread moved to General Shooting Help.
    Yes you are right, it was when I zoomed in close that it got worse. I was hoping that the pros who were running the big zooms might have had a way around it but maybe not. You mentioned scintillations. I think it was the scintillations that someone told me could be reduced with some filters, but maybe not by the sound of it?

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    Let's do this with a few less words than someone.
    You can only get a photo of what is. If there is heat shimmer than that's the photo you get.

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