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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    10

    Advice for shooting concert photos

    Tomorrow night I am going to try my second attempt at photographing my son's concert, which will take place on a stage in a school auditorium. My first attempt gave me disappointing results in that there was alot of blurriness. I used the P mode, image stabilizer set to mode 1, flash off and most of the shots were at full zoom. This time I was going to try shooting in S mode, with the shutter speed at 1/50. I've also changed the IS to mode 2. I'll try not to zoom all the way to 12X, but it is so tempting. Do these settings sound reasonable? Any other advice would be appreciated. Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    177
    Is there any chance you could sneak a mono pod into the concert with you? One of the biggest issues with low-light photography is holding the camera steady and a mono pod might be just the edge you need to succeed. Mono pods as opposed to tripods have only one leg and can be kept between your legs, out of other people's way. If you opt not to use a pod then I would suggest you rely on the EVF over the LCD. It is much easier to keep the camera steady if you don't have the camera held out in front of you. Keep your elbows tucked in and practice breathing control. The OIS can only do so much when taking low shutter speed shots.
    Tyler
    Panasonic DMC FZ-20, FZ-50, Wired Remote, Sunpak 383
    DCR-6600, TCON 14B, Nikon #5T+6T
    FZ20 Photo Gallery

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Posts
    647
    Turn on IS mode 2, switch to Aperture Priority, go to F2.8 and let the camera pick shutter speed... one of the biggest advantages of the FZ20 is that it's F2.8 throughout the zoom range, so even at 12X you'll be getting a lot of light (of course, hand shake WILL be a bigger problem - maybe you could rest the camera on something? or - as you sauid - back off the zoom as much as you can). Increase the ISO to 200 at least, you could use 400 if the results look acceptable to you (or if you are willing to do some noise reduction post-processing). Since it's going to be dark-ish (I assume) try dialling in a little negative exposure compensation (-1/3, -2/3 perhaps), that along with the F2.8, higher ISO, and stabilization should hopefully let you get fast enough shutter speeds for sharp pictures.
    HTH
    Last edited by Balrog; 04-12-2005 at 07:18 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    western pa
    Posts
    2,334
    Here is a link to some photos my wife took the other night at a fashion show.
    She will not touch a setting on the camera so I set it to ISO 400 ( no flash allowed) and she took 486 photos with at least 1/2 of them acceptable.
    These photos are straight from the camera. They could stand a NR program run on them but I wanted to post some that are original.
    The exif is included. there are 5 photos from the show.

    http://imageevent.com/grc6/toshareonnet/noise




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    Gene
    http://grc225.zenfolio.com/
    http://imageevent.com/grc6
    one of these days I'll understand!

    Panasonic FZ20 & FZ30,FZ18
    D50 -- D80

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    378
    I would say for the sake of redundancy that a monopod would probably be a huge asset in the situation you describe. Youíd be able to take photos at ISO 200 or less. You could actually use the P mode if you wanted to make things fully automatic or as someone suggested use Aperture Priority.

    One thing that may be challenging if it is dark is the focus. If it is a band concert, I would assume there wonít be much movement. If that is the case, you may want to set your focus before the concert using the manual focus and then the temporary automatic for the stage area. I would check some of those things out, even take some test shots before the show and try to quickly judge the sharpness (as well as one can on the little LCD monitor). I would especially check this out on the high end of the zoom mode. Then when the show starts, you wonít have to worry about focusing too much. I believe if you get it focused in zoom mode, it will still be in focus when you zoom outÖ That has worked for me, although I still donít fully trust that yet because I donít have much experience with it.

    Good luck,
    Erik

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Posts
    2,929
    Maryann,

    Here is the same post I posted in your first thread aobut concert pics... my suggestions are still the same and most of the others that posted on that thread agreed with the following.....


    Use faster shutter speeds. I noticed you said the 1/50 and 1/80 shots looked somewhat decent. Bump it up to the low 100's like 1/125 or so. Turn IS to mode 2 that will give you the best help not mode 1! I also like to use the 2 second timer, that way I am not shaking the camera or moving it to press the shutter. Also, if not using flash, try using the burst mode, that is probably my favorite option on this camera, its very helpfull! Like Gene said, use high ISO. You can later remove noise with NeatImage noise removal later if you feel the need. Noise really is no problem! One last thing to try is use the AF Assist lamp to help focus on your subject a little better in the low light. However, that will drain your battery very quick, so only use the assist lamp if you are having trouble focusing! So I would suggest using S mode and setting a high shutter speed. These tips should help, but as was my case, the more you take and the more you tinker and the more you practice the better your results will get! Good luck and let us know hos it comes along! We are here to help

    Here is the link to your first thread about concert settings......
    http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6084

    It may help to go back and read all the suggestions again. I would suggest once again, a shutter speed of around 125 is key!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    10
    Thanks for all the suggestions. I did go back and read all your suggestions from my previous post and I think I'm going to try S mode with the shutter at 1/125 for starters. I don't have a monopod, but there may be one in my future! I will let you know if my results improve from my first attempt. Wish me luck!

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