September 20, 2014, 12:36:35 PM

Author Topic: People that don't shoot in manual...  (Read 27412 times)

schill

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #165 on: August 01, 2013, 04:06:05 PM »
But again, I'm a total noob, my 5D3 is my first DSLR and I'm trying to learn everything it *can* do, and keeping in manual most of the time, is the best way to figure things out IMHO.

I can't say that your approach is wrong, but I don't agree with "keeping in manual most of the time, is the best way to figure things out."

Learning how to use the camera in manual mode will probably help you understand exposure.  But, it will do nothing to help you learn some of the other things your camera is capable of.  The Av and Tv modes are valid tools and they are worth understanding and using.

This thread has demonstrated a couple times that there are people who are stuck in one mode and think that it's the only "real" way to use the camera.  They try another mode like Av once and because they have never spent any time using it before they think it doesn't work.

You need to spend time learning other capabilities of the camera before you rule them out.

Personally, I don't see any reason for manual mode to be the "best" way to learn about exposure.  The best way is to understand what the camera is doing (whatever the mode is) and see what the effects are.  If I understand what aperture and shutter speed affect, then no matter how they are set I can figure out what's happening with the exposure.

When I shoot in Av or Tv mode, I don't ignore the other value just because I'm not setting it.  If I have the shutter speed set to 1/1600 in Tv mode, I do check what the camera is giving me for aperture.  If I don't like it, I change the ISO, exposure compensation, or shutter speed.  I pay attention to what the camera is telling me and I make the decisions.

If I decide to work in manual mode, it's almost exactly the same thing - except no settings change on their own.  I'm still looking at aperture, shutter speed, and ISO - I just don't have exposure compensation in the mix (which isn't needed here if I'm fixing all the others).

Personally, and everyone can be different, it seems like a waste to have a nice camera and never experiment with different modes - even while learning.  And after "mastering" one mode, you are allowed to use the others.  But if you never try them out and practice with them, I can see that you might think they don't work as well as manual mode.

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #165 on: August 01, 2013, 04:06:05 PM »

unfocused

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #166 on: August 01, 2013, 04:29:08 PM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....

With all due respect to Syl Arena, Joe McNally, Strobist and all the other advocates of manual flash, they have thousands upon thousands of hours of experience working with strobes and know them inside and out. While it's a good exercise to try to learn manual controls, to me it's a little like the original topic of this thread: if a tool is available that makes your life easier, why not use it?

If I live long enough, I may someday have enough experience to confidently set my speedlights on full manual. But, in the meantime, I figure I paid for Canon's top line strobes so I might as well take advantage of the technology they offer.  As so many others have said about the original topic of this thread: it's about the results, not about how you got there.
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KyleSTL

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #167 on: August 01, 2013, 05:29:01 PM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....

With all due respect to Syl Arena, Joe McNally, Strobist and all the other advocates of manual flash, they have thousands upon thousands of hours of experience working with strobes and know them inside and out. While it's a good exercise to try to learn manual controls, to me it's a little like the original topic of this thread: if a tool is available that makes your life easier, why not use it?

If I live long enough, I may someday have enough experience to confidently set my speedlights on full manual. But, in the meantime, I figure I paid for Canon's top line strobes so I might as well take advantage of the technology they offer.  As so many others have said about the original topic of this thread: it's about the results, not about how you got there.
Bravo.  I don't think I'll ever have enough time to confidently and efficiently set up stobes in manual mode.  I'm sure I could figure it out using tables, trial-and-error and other methods, but I don't do it every day (nor do I think I ever will), so there is no advantage to manual flash when I can just set up camera in manual mode, and play around with ISO, shutter speed and FEC and get similar results in about the same (or less) amount of time.
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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #168 on: August 02, 2013, 02:42:39 AM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....

With all due respect to Syl Arena, Joe McNally, Strobist and all the other advocates of manual flash, they have thousands upon thousands of hours of experience working with strobes and know them inside and out. While it's a good exercise to try to learn manual controls, to me it's a little like the original topic of this thread: if a tool is available that makes your life easier, why not use it?

If I live long enough, I may someday have enough experience to confidently set my speedlights on full manual. But, in the meantime, I figure I paid for Canon's top line strobes so I might as well take advantage of the technology they offer.  As so many others have said about the original topic of this thread: it's about the results, not about how you got there.
Bravo.  I don't think I'll ever have enough time to confidently and efficiently set up stobes in manual mode.  I'm sure I could figure it out using tables, trial-and-error and other methods, but I don't do it every day (nor do I think I ever will), so there is no advantage to manual flash when I can just set up camera in manual mode, and play around with ISO, shutter speed and FEC and get similar results in about the same (or less) amount of time.

How about a lightmeter?

Instead of shooting a lot to try to get the flash to fire the way I want, I simply use a lightmeter, set the flash, turn it off, do the next one and turn all of them on, it's done within three minutes, and then I can shoot and move, and no matter if I move so that I have the flash directly to the camera or hidden I ALWALYS know I have the exact same light hitting the subject. That's why I always use manual flash. I have shot with ETTL and found it very frustrating that I had to stand in the same place or the exposure would change, for example having a flash towards the camera suddenly everything is three stops under.


Manual flash sounds difficult, while it's really the opposite.
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Lawliet

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #169 on: August 02, 2013, 02:57:06 AM »
so there is no advantage to manual flash when I can just set up camera in manual mode, and play around with ISO, shutter speed and FEC and get similar results in about the same (or less) amount of time.

Caveat: ETTL will try to keep the amount of light it sees constant. Sounds nice. Until you realize that this means area*intensity is constant, and for example your subject tilting the head a bit changes the first component. The second is what you want constant for consistent images, so you need to evaluate&adjust at every slight change. An RT flash at least lets you use AFlash, thus eliminating most of the randomness inducing factors. Still not very graceful with overlapping zones of illumination, but at least consistently off.

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #170 on: August 02, 2013, 03:03:19 AM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....
With all due respect to Syl Arena

I've got Syl's book and as just flipped through it again, in the second part there are a lot of portrait scenes with details explained ... almost all of his outdoor shots and even most of his indoor shots are ettl, he uses m flash outside if he needs full power and doesn't want the ettl pre-flash to drain part of it.

The_Arsonist

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #171 on: August 03, 2013, 12:38:14 PM »
I'm surprised to see everyone saying they only use flash in M mode. While I am normally in M for flash work, I sometimes shoot flash in Av mode with a locked ISO so that the changes in ambient light will be picked up automatically by the shutter changes. Of course, I guess that is assuming manual flash; many people probably stick to E-TTL?

Using Av for flash and with a locked ISO will affect the one thing flash photographers need to control the most... shutter speed. If we can't control our shutter speed, we can't control how much ambient is mixed with our flash.

IE: Bounced flash mixing with ambient at a reception, event or mixed lighting situation.

Yes, that's my point, let the camera choose the ambient via the shutter speed. You can control the ratio of ambient to flash with exposure compensation, and control the flash power with aperture. That way, when the ambient changes, the camera compensates while keeping the same flash ratio/power/etc.

Yeah that's great but you'll still have wildly different exposures if the meter catches a bright light, and guess what? You have to dial in expo comp, then flash expo comp. then again when the light goes away... It's great if you like to fiddle a lot with that.

I find it easier to just set my settings in M mode, then simply control the flash exposure comp of the guests with ETTL. Then I have control of the ambient and the flash will be variable to changing light to get a good exposure on the guests. This works way better and I can concentrate on composition more than twiddling dials all night.
Ah, ETTL, that's the kicker. I only have manual flashes, and I am envisioning an ambient situation where there's not going to be something throwing off the camera's metering.
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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #171 on: August 03, 2013, 12:38:14 PM »

RLPhoto

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #172 on: August 03, 2013, 12:40:45 PM »
^------- ETTL-II with the 600RT and 5D3 combo doesn't have the bad flash exposure problems my 5Dc had & older canons have. I have to admit nikon had it right for years until canon finally got it right. I felt the same way about shooting M-Flash but now, ETTL works nicely. I almost ditched all my canon stuff for a d700 about two years ago, but I'm glad I waited.

cayenne

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #173 on: August 03, 2013, 07:55:49 PM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....

With all due respect to Syl Arena, Joe McNally, Strobist and all the other advocates of manual flash, they have thousands upon thousands of hours of experience working with strobes and know them inside and out. While it's a good exercise to try to learn manual controls, to me it's a little like the original topic of this thread: if a tool is available that makes your life easier, why not use it?

If I live long enough, I may someday have enough experience to confidently set my speedlights on full manual. But, in the meantime, I figure I paid for Canon's top line strobes so I might as well take advantage of the technology they offer.  As so many others have said about the original topic of this thread: it's about the results, not about how you got there.

Well, in controlled conditions, with manual, you seem to have IMHO, much more control of the look that you want...rather than the computer chip in the camera trying to tell you what you want.

Not saying it doesn't have its place, but when you have the time and control of the subject and environment, it seems to me at my new place on the photo experience totem pole, that you get more control of what you desire out of manual flashes, especially if you're shooting multiple ones..?

Just my opinion so far...

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cayenne

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #174 on: August 03, 2013, 07:57:09 PM »
...I kinda go with what I heard Syl Arena say, that he only uses ETTL when the distance between the lens and the subject are moving....

With all due respect to Syl Arena, Joe McNally, Strobist and all the other advocates of manual flash, they have thousands upon thousands of hours of experience working with strobes and know them inside and out. While it's a good exercise to try to learn manual controls, to me it's a little like the original topic of this thread: if a tool is available that makes your life easier, why not use it?

If I live long enough, I may someday have enough experience to confidently set my speedlights on full manual. But, in the meantime, I figure I paid for Canon's top line strobes so I might as well take advantage of the technology they offer.  As so many others have said about the original topic of this thread: it's about the results, not about how you got there.
Bravo.  I don't think I'll ever have enough time to confidently and efficiently set up stobes in manual mode.  I'm sure I could figure it out using tables, trial-and-error and other methods, but I don't do it every day (nor do I think I ever will), so there is no advantage to manual flash when I can just set up camera in manual mode, and play around with ISO, shutter speed and FEC and get similar results in about the same (or less) amount of time.

How about a lightmeter?

Instead of shooting a lot to try to get the flash to fire the way I want, I simply use a lightmeter, set the flash, turn it off, do the next one and turn all of them on, it's done within three minutes, and then I can shoot and move, and no matter if I move so that I have the flash directly to the camera or hidden I ALWALYS know I have the exact same light hitting the subject. That's why I always use manual flash. I have shot with ETTL and found it very frustrating that I had to stand in the same place or the exposure would change, for example having a flash towards the camera suddenly everything is three stops under.


Manual flash sounds difficult, while it's really the opposite.

I just bought a light meter...the new sekonic touch screen one...hope to have some time to figure it out soon.
:)

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emko

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #175 on: August 03, 2013, 09:02:17 PM »
only time i cant shoot manual is if i shoot kids soccer with 100-400mm when i am zooming the aperture changes, rest of the time manual i use the metering to get me close then i adjust for perfect settings.

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #176 on: August 03, 2013, 10:58:13 PM »
The only time my camera is not on fully manual, is when I hand it to someone else to take pictures of me so I set it to aperture priority so that they don't have to keep saying "why is the photo so dark here when it was fine over there" and all that stuff.
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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #177 on: August 04, 2013, 01:34:04 AM »
Only time I shoot manual is when I turn the selection dial to M -position.

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #177 on: August 04, 2013, 01:34:04 AM »

ishdakuteb

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #178 on: August 04, 2013, 03:05:14 AM »
imo, when you know how to operate your camera in the right way, it does not what mode are you shooting in (p, av, tv or m), it should come out the same.  the draw back is that you have to hold ae-l to maintain same exposure which you have to act pretty quick on selecting your focus point (only if you do not prefer focus lock and re-compose).  however, if  you are holding a 1d series (if i understand 1d correctly via reading 1dx manual.  fyi, i do not have 1dx... just read it for fun and compare to my 5d iii), then it is a different story since exposure lock can be hold much longer...

note:  if you do not care about having same exposure in every shot as you are shooting with the same lighting condition, then disregard what i am saying above...
« Last Edit: August 04, 2013, 03:07:36 AM by ishdakuteb »

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #179 on: August 04, 2013, 04:43:05 AM »
Only time I shoot manual is when I turn the selection dial to M -position.
Sometimes I do that - and then (before taking the shot) I turn it to the green rectangle ;)

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Re: People that don't shoot in manual...
« Reply #179 on: August 04, 2013, 04:43:05 AM »