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Help With Night Pics

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#1 Westisthebest



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Posted 17 December 2015 - 07:31 PM

I have a Nikon 5300 and don't know what I'm doing with it.  My night pictures without flash always come out pretty blurry.  In the day time the pics come out brilliant, any ideas on how to get better night pics?

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#2 Lighthawk


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Posted 17 December 2015 - 07:56 PM

Blurry sounds like camera movement to me.  Are you using a tripod and making sure it's locked down?


I'm not a Nikon shooter, but try taking a 30 sec exposure, at iso 3200 with the fastest (f2.8/f4?) wide angle you have.

Use a shutter release, or use your camera's timer so you don't cause vibration triggering the shutter.

If you have live view available, that will also flip up the mirror, so you don't have mirror slap.  

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#3 Wandering Sagebrush

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Posted 17 December 2015 - 08:54 PM

West, are you using a tripod? Low light is pretty tough to shoot hand held.

I second what Lighthawk said. If you're feeling overwhelmed by the camera, I'd recommend getting a tutorial. Here's one on you tube.


Another technique is to use the mirror up (MUP) feature of your camera to reduce vibration. I'd also recommend shooting in manual mode, where you can set and see the aperture and shutter values, and dial it in to get a good exposure. You might have to increase ISO in order to get things so you can adjust the aperture and shutter.

Try using manual focus, too. It's tough to get good autofocus in low light. A headlamp or flashlight helps get something to focus on. Live view is a great way to ensure your subject is in focus. Zoom in on the subject, then manually adjust until your subject is sharp/crisp.


Edit:   There are a number of eBooks on Night Photography, as well.

The single best tip is the tripod, followed by an electronic release.

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Posted 18 December 2015 - 07:03 AM

I recently discovered the following site and have found it immensely informative. I've not had a chance to try out the methods presented but will soon. Might even pull the trigger on a 6D finally.



Edited by ETAV8R, 18 December 2015 - 07:03 AM.

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#5 Westisthebest



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Posted 18 December 2015 - 09:24 PM

Awesome, thanks for all the tips.  I was doing pretty much everything wrong (not using a tripod, using autofocus, not adjusting exposure, etc.).  I'll give these tips a test run and check out the youtube and let yall know it goes!  I was recently in Thailand and missed out on some great night pics, such a shame.  Thanks!

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