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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    29

    D70 pictures seem dark

    A few months ago, I went completely digital and bought a D70. I haven't been happier with a purchase since I don't know when. But...
    many of my pictures (most taken on the "auto" setting) benefit from brightening in Photoshop or whatever. Auto white balance, let the camera pick it all - almost point and shoot. But most of them seem a little on the dark side.
    I've played around a little with some of the settings, reading the manual and experimenting, but I haven't figured out why I get the results I do.
    May I be missing some basic feature?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    2,364
    use aperture priority mode to get brighter pictures.
    but be warry if the shutter speed drops too much to hand hold.

    are you using the kit lens? bc a fast prime may get you better pictures.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    1,118
    Quote Originally Posted by bbarlow@rochester.rr.com
    A few months ago, I went completely digital and bought a D70. I haven't been happier with a purchase since I don't know when. But...
    many of my pictures (most taken on the "auto" setting) benefit from brightening in Photoshop or whatever. Auto white balance, let the camera pick it all - almost point and shoot. But most of them seem a little on the dark side.
    I've played around a little with some of the settings, reading the manual and experimenting, but I haven't figured out why I get the results I do.
    May I be missing some basic feature?
    I think something to recognize is that DSLR's (whether consumer, Pro-sumer or PRO) are not meant to be used on auto. One of the main reason to purchase a DSLR is because of all the features packed into it, and the FULL manual control. Although I do not own a D70 I do know that auto function can in no way compare to manual. First and foremost I would recommend that you read your manual and take a few pictures in manual mode just to make sure that the camera isn't broken or malfunctioning in any way. The pictures don't even have to be of anything significant, just make sure they are properly exposed. If you have properly exposed the shot then you should no longer have a problem with darkness, if you still do, then there may be something wrong with your camera. If you browse this forum a little more you will see that a lot of people have problems in Auto mode, not only with Nikon, but Cannon DSLR's also. Take a look at the Kodak Gray cards in the middle of this review http://www.bobatkins.com/photography...al/eos20d.html When set to auto, the gray card looks orange, when preset to tungsten light, it looks a little less orange, and when custom balanced the card looks gray. It goes with the saying which you will see countless times on this forum: it isn't the camera that is taking the great pics, it is the photographer. Good luck and happy shooting.
    Ken
    Canon dSLR User

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    29

    Lens is...

    a 35-70AF Nikkor that I moved over from my film Nikon. Bought the D70 as body-only to use existing lenses. Wish I'd sprung for the kit. Maybe time to add the Sigma 18-125?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    107
    Quote Originally Posted by bbarlow@rochester.rr.com
    a 35-70AF Nikkor that I moved over from my film Nikon. Bought the D70 as body-only to use existing lenses. Wish I'd sprung for the kit. Maybe time to add the Sigma 18-125?
    No, the problem may not be solved even if you buy a new Lens. Did the pictures you taken look dark under all circumstances? i.e. under sun light, using flash, night shoot, have a higher ISO setting...
    If you still think the Lens is bad, you can borrow a Lens from others to test whether there is a Lens problem; or you can take the D70 to a shop to try their Lens (pretended you want to buy one) and give a test.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    56

    Dark exposures.

    I had the same problem having all of the exposures being underexposed when I bought my D70 last May. At that time I had not discovered this chat room, so I asked Nikon for help. After many exchanges of test shots they decided that the problem was with the lenses. I was using Sigma lenses at the time because the Nikon "kit" lens was unavailable at the time. So I changed to all Nikkor's and still had the problem. I changed bodies four times and still had poor results.
    Then I discovered this chat room and George Rheim very kindly worked with me and discovered that the ISO setting was incorrect. I had thought that when in fully "Automatic Mode" everything was automatic. Not so. The ISO remains at the setting that was last used. So,when shooting pictures in poor lighting I had used a high ISO setting, it remained there when I switched to Automatic the next day. I now always check the ISO. In the P, S, A and M modes and the ISO set on auto in the menu setting the ISO is automaticly set. For some perverse reason this does not happen in the Automatic setting.
    I also found that using custom curves has improved my pictures to the point where I hardly need to use PS Elements. Also, I find that Nikon Capture processes the RAW shots more accurately than either Elements or ACD See.
    Last edited by Charles C. Weston; 03-02-2005 at 02:52 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Monterey Bay
    Posts
    6,029
    Thanks for filling in Charles.

    Believe it or not this is a fairly common problem (forgetting that you have the ISO set in manual and then switch to auto). But once you know the symptom...
    D7000, D70, CP990, CP900, FE.
    50mm f/1.8, Sigma 18-125, Sigma 24-70 f/2.8, Nikon 18-105 VR, Nikon 55-200 VR, Nikon 43-86 f/3.5 AiS, Vivitar 28-90 F/2.8-3.5 Macro, Vivitar 75-205 F/3.8-4.8, SB800.
    Ha! See, I can change...


    http://d70fan.smugmug.com/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    56
    George. Forgive me for spelling your name incorrectly.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Monterey Bay
    Posts
    6,029
    Quote Originally Posted by Charles C. Weston
    George. Forgive me for spelling your name incorrectly.
    Hey, If I had a dollar for every time it's been spelled wrong (including employers) I would be able to retire early...
    D7000, D70, CP990, CP900, FE.
    50mm f/1.8, Sigma 18-125, Sigma 24-70 f/2.8, Nikon 18-105 VR, Nikon 55-200 VR, Nikon 43-86 f/3.5 AiS, Vivitar 28-90 F/2.8-3.5 Macro, Vivitar 75-205 F/3.8-4.8, SB800.
    Ha! See, I can change...


    http://d70fan.smugmug.com/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    29

    Continuing...

    1) The comment about the lens was really driven by "equipment lust", not really a belief that my lens is bad. :-) However, during experimentation and manual reading, I came across this, in the discussion of Auto white balance: "For best results, use type G or D lens." I've no idea what I have type-wise, or how different "best results" might be.
    2) I have done some more controlled experimentation, and starting to tap the capabilities of the camera, but don't yet have a definitive set of working answers - settings that will be optimum for my uses and style.
    3) I realize that the camera is meant for "intentional photography" (a phrase I think I read here), and have used aperture priority mode for controlling depth of field and shutter mode for action shots, but I think that for many "grab type" pictures, the camera should be able to choose those settings by itself. After all, that's why it's paid the big bucks. And choosing aperture priority mode with f5.6 and getting 1/250 the shutter is (all other settings equal) the same as choosing auto and having the camera choose f5.6 @ 1/250, right?

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