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5d3: HDR VS Multiple Expsosure vs AEB

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Jamesy:
I have never done HDR with the exception of playing around with the in camera HDR functionality.

My question is I may take some shots this weekend that could benefit from HDR processing and was wondering if I could get some tips on the best approach. From what I can gather, the multiple exposure function is just that, it does not alter the exposure with subsequent frames.

I would think shooting bracketed with at least 3 frames would be best. Obviously I would shoot on a tripod.

- Is AEB bracketing the best approach?
- If so, what are the best settings (0,-,+)
- How many frames should I shoot of each scene?

Thank in advance.

TrumpetPower!:
Use the built-in HDR. It does the bracket, saves the original images, and creates a not-awful JPEG preview for you. The preview is useful in the field to get an idea of whether or not you got the shot you wanted, but it's unlikely you'll want to use it for anything else. The only time AEB makes sense for HDR work is if you're shooting more than three frames. (There are uses for AEB other than HDR, but damned few -- and most of those would be better served by HDR anyway.)

How to process the image once you get back to the computer is a subject of much debate and taste. My own approach is to create masks with a big, soft brush; you're essentially creating your own custom-shaped graduated neutral density filter tailor-made for just that scene. Others like the surrealistic hyper-contrast look of tonemapping. What you go with is your problem.

Cheers,

b&

Jamesy:
Thanks for the insight.

So three frames should suffice then? These will more of a vacation snapshot type deal so simple is better.

This thread was more to gather info on camera operation rather than Post Processing techniques as there are numerous ways to accomplish the end result. That said, garbage in, garbage for the most part. If I capture a half decent sequence then I can drop it into my software of choice for the final image.

Jamesy:
Thanks for the pointers thus far.

If forgot to ask:
- Is it better to shoot M or Av? The 5D3 supports both HDR and AEB in both modes.
- Do you use mirror lock when shooting these scenes along with a remote shutter?

rocket_scientist:
The more room you give yourself, the better.  Depending on the scene, 3 exposures might not be enough.  Some scenes need many more than that.  Make sure you are shooting in raw and in manual.  The histogram is your friend, along with the high light alert.  If you have a lot of time, with a still subject, you begin by exposing the darkest exposure that the highlight alert just shows up with white flashing.  You then begin to systematically increase your exposure, using the shutter, not the aperture, by 1-2 stops each time.  After you take the shot, look at the histogram and when the left side of the histogram begins to go flat (i.e. there are no more vertical lines), you have captured most of the dynamic range of the scene.  This could be any number of exposures.  I have done this and have been very pleased with the results.  If your title is correct, you have a 5D mk III and that allows 7 frame AEB which I would recommend if you don't want to take the time for the above procedure as I said: the more range you give yourself, the better off you will be.  To give you some insight though, before I knew of the above technique, I used the AEB on my 7D with +,- 2 stops for this picture in Sandusky, OH.

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