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Thread: Need help !

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    As Keen As Mustard NikonNellie's Avatar
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    Need help !

    Thought I would take some photos of my son's new guitar last night. I used my Cactus V4's to fire off an SB800 set on Manual at varying light strengths and my Yonguou 460 also set manually. The lens I used was the Nikkor 50mm. Sometimes I had the room's downlights on and other times I just used the flashes in the darkened room.
    Unfortunately, most of my images ended up with a large black line on one edge of the image. See the example below. I had this problem when I first started using a flash and somehow fixed the problem but for the life of me I cannot remember why it happened and how I fixed it.
    Can anybody help me identify the problem and tell me how to fix it.
    Last edited by NikonNellie; 30-07-2010 at 9:23pm.
    CAMERA: Nikon D800, Nikon D7000
    LENSES: AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Macro, Sigma 10 - 20mm F/4 - 5.6, Sigma 150 - 500mm F/5 - 6.3 APO DG OS, Nikkor 18 - 200mm F/3.5 - 5.6 VRII,
    Sigma 70 - 200mm f2.8 APO EX DG OS, Tamron SP 24 - 70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD, Sigma 85mm F/1.4 EX DG, Nikkor AF-S 16-35mm F/4 ED VR
    MY WEBSITES: www.nawimages.com, http://nelliewajzerphotography.smugmug.com/, http://NellieWajzerPhotography.blogspot.com



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    Oops pressed the wrong button. Here's the example:
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    This looks like a flash sync speed problem; ie, you're using a shutter speed too fast for synchronisation with your flash.

    I'm not familiar with the Nikon, but try dialling the shutter speed down to 1/200th or less.

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    Yip, nikon sync speed is 1/250s though you can use high speed or fp sync to increase that but reduces flash power
    Darren
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    Thanks John - I knew you would come to my rescue. I had a feeling it was the flash sync speed. I think I had my SS at 1/250 and my flash is set to sync at 1/200. I was sure I had tried the SS at 1/180 for the above reason but looking at my exif data all the images appear to be at the same shutter speed and aperture. Must have been in a daze!

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    For the guitar shot, not a lot of flash power is needed, but yes, sync speed is definitely the problem.

    I have sometimes experienced it when shooting at max sync speed.

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    Hmm, 1/250s should be ok

    Possibly issue here is the mix using the 3rd party light not syncing

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    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    Thanks John - I knew you would come to my rescue. I had a feeling it was the flash sync speed. I think I had my SS at 1/250 and my flash is set to sync at 1/200. I was sure I had tried the SS at 1/180 for the above reason but looking at my exif data all the images appear to be at the same shutter speed and aperture. Must have been in a daze!
    Ah, glad I could help you there.

    The problem should alleviate if you dial your camera's shutter speed down to 1/200th or slower.

    PS: Nice image. One tip: blow the dust off the pick guard (I'm a guitarist).

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    Thanks John. I didn't realise the dust was on the guitar until after I had taken 30 odd images - must get No.2 sun to dust his room!
    I think I will have another go at these useing your suggested SS and I will make sure I give the guitar a good dust before I start clicking. I was actually quite pleased with some of the light in the images - it was a pity they had the black line on them I have managed to salvage a couple with cropping.

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    Are you using bare flashes for this shoot?

    A softbox or brolly would provide a nice, diffused light source.

    If you want to borrow some lighting gear, let me know.

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    I had an omni on the SB800 and fired it around 1/8 strength and the Yongnuo was bare but fired at 1/32. I may take you up on that offer sometime soon - Judy and I are starting an 8 week portraiture course on Tuesday even though neither of us have any gear. We are hoping to use the School's equipment.
    When I took the photo of my avatar I used a piece of white cloth hung up on one side and fired the flash through that which diffused the light quite well. Didn't even think to use it for these guitar photos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    I had an omni on the SB800 and fired it around 1/8 strength and the Yongyuou was bare but fired at 1/32.
    I don't have an Omni, but this will provide a better quality of light than a bare strobe.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    I may take you up on that offer sometime soon - Judy and I are starting an 8 week portraiture course on Tuesday even though neither of us have any gear. We are hoping to use the School's equipment.
    Let me know how you go. I have various brollies, a softbox and a pair of 3.1m air-cushioned light stands. I also have an 80cm reflector/diffuser dish with gold, silver, white and translucent surfaces.

    I haven't used my lighting gear for a while, but I have a few shoots in the next month.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    When I took the photo of my avatar I used a piece of white cloth hung up on one side and fired the flash through that which diffused the light quite well. Didn't even think to use it for these guitar photos.
    That's a good approach for lack of actual lighting gear.

    What you can also do is grab a white bed sheet, hang that up and bounce the flash off it. A larger surface will provide softer, more even light.

    Don't forget to adjust the flash zoom to a wide setting to spread the beam of light across more of the sheet's surface area.

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    I also have a light tent that I made myself and sometimes I shoot the flash through that as well. I have a couple of boxes in the garage that I have been going to turn into soft boxes but haven't had the time to do so yet. My hubby really doesn't like me spending money on my photography equipment so I have had to be a bit thrifty with my purchases. I think he would divorce me if I suggested buying myself some lighting gear!

    Such a generous offer John - I'll have a word with Judy on Tuesday at the class and see if she would be interested in borrowing your equipment for a practice session together. Judy and I only live two minutes away from each other. I will PM you if we do want to borrow it and then maybe you could bring it along to the Camp Cove meet.

    Thanks so much for your helpful suggestions ,e.g the bed sheet - wouldn't it be nice if everyone had your attitude towards sharing your knowledge.
    Last edited by NikonNellie; 30-07-2010 at 10:48pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    I also have a light tent that I made myself and sometimes I shoot the flash through that as well.
    Light tents are great. I have an 80cm cubic tent, and I've used it for some of my still-life work.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    I have a couple of boxes in the garage that I have been going to turn into soft boxes but haven't had the time to do so yet. My hubby really doesn't like me spending money on my photography equipment
    We all have our vices. :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    Such a generous offer John - I'll have a word with Judy on Tuesday at the class and see if she would be interested in borrowing your equipment for a practice session together. Judy and I only live two minutes away from each other. I will PM you if we do want to borrow it and then maybe you could bring it along to the Camp Cove meet.
    No problem at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by NikonNellie View Post
    Thanks so much for your helpful suggestions ,e.g the bed sheet - wouldn't it be nice if everyone had your attitude towards sharing your knowledge.
    It's a pleasure to be able to give something back to the photographic community, as I've gained so much from it in my years.

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    as i use a full manual flash like the vivitar 285hv, everytime if the curtain closes to soon (i.e the black burnt part) id just bring down the shutter speed lower to say 1/160 from the max 1/200 or 1/250. shud work fine after!

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    The problem is solved ( flash synch speed too high ) but I would like to add a few thoughts.

    The max synch speed of the D80 is rated at 1/200 -- but -- that is when used with either the on board flash, a camera mounted Nikon speedlight or a Nikon speedlight used as a remote with Nikon CLS. Remote triggers and or 3rd party branded flashes may not work at the maximum speeds or even at around 1/160.
    The lower the power that the flash fires at shortens the flash duration and in turn allows the faster shutter speeds.
    Going back to the basics behind this shot with your ability to control ambient light effectively with either the rooms downlights on or in a darkened room I think as an exercise you should go back to experimenting with shutter speeds starting at 1/60 and going no higher than 1/125.
    The first thing to keep in mind if hand holding the camera is the age old focal length versus shutter speed rule and at 1/60 with a 50mm lens you have that covered. In a darkened room, 1/60 and ISO 100 should effectively kill any ambient light and then the exposure will be purely controlled by the flash output power and your selected aperture. If you have the room lights on then you may find that 1/125 will be more appropriate to keep ambient light at bay.
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    Thanks for the advice Azri and Andrew.

    Andrew - It took me quite awhile to remember the focal length vs shutter speed theory and I had many a blurred photo but I think I have finally got this aspect of photography embedded in my check list that I have in my head. I am going to attempt this shoot again and I will certaily keep in mind your suggestions about experimenting with the shutter speeds. Thankyou so much for taking the time to explain everything - I have found it very helpful. Much appreciated.

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    OMG, reading this I am almost scared to use my flash. It seems SO complicated, sync speeds etc.
    Nikon D90 with Nikon 18-200mm f3.5-5.6 Nikon 50mm f1.8, Tamron 90mm macro f2.8, Sigma 10-20mm f/4 - 5.6, SB-600, Manfrotto tripod and head.
    Software: Elements 10 and Aperture.


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    Quote Originally Posted by judybee View Post
    OMG, reading this I am almost scared to use my flash. It seems SO complicated, sync speeds etc.
    Don't worry Judy - your memory is much better than mine so you will remember the finer details of flash photography such as sync speeds!

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    Quote Originally Posted by judybee View Post
    OMG, reading this I am almost scared to use my flash. It seems SO complicated, sync speeds etc.
    It's not that complicated. Re flash sync speeds, all you need to know is that you should not use a camera shutter speed faster than your flash's max sync speed, which depending on the model will be 1/200 or 1/250.

    Flash exposure is controlled by aperture. You can also control the power output of the flash.

    You can also control the amount of light by increasing or decreasing the position of the flash in relation to the subject.

    When I shoot models I baseline at 1/16th and f/5.6 on the lens, and adjust from there.

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