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Question about concert photography

sasko1sasko1 Member
edited June 2012 in general photography
I have short question about taking photos of concert photography.

Recently I took photos of one concert where I used these settings:

M, f/2.8, ISO 1600, 1/200 , spot metering. I used D700 and 70-200 lens.

And images are not that bright as I expected. Now my question is, would there be more light let in if ISO would be 3200 and other settings the same? Is in this situation better to have A than M? Since some images came out good, some are dark.

How low should I go with exposure time? 1/125? I do not want to get blurry images. Would be better to use f2.8 + ISO 3200 and 1/125? Or should I go with A priority and just hope that spot metering would choose enough light with iso 3200?

Thanks for advice.


  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Definitely shoot manual, consistent light, but that also depends on the concert lighting, as the mood might change, so be quick to open up shutter even more.

    Are they moving or fairly static, I would expect to be shooting in the 80th to 100th range if moving and around the 40-60th, or lower, if not moving, as the 70-200 is VR.

    The ISO is fairly high though as long as you are not worried about noise.

    The camera does not see anywhere as good as the eye can that's why you will be surprised at end result. Remember, the LCD images on back of camera are the embedded jpeg in RAW [presuming you are shooting RAW].

    Post couple images here.

  • sasko1sasko1 Member
    I think my main problem was that I used 1/200 instead of 1/125. The missing light was from that address. It was my first concert after a year and i lost my touch. Last year did few great gigs and everything was ok. I looked at settings and saw there was time around 1/125.

    Now my only question is this: if I shoot in M, will with higher ISO come also more light or not? If all other settings stay the same?

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited June 2012
    If you shoot manual, you have a constant exposure, with no bright lights or dim backgrounds influencing the outcome.

    So shooting with say 60th-100th at f2.8 and 2000+ ISO gives you a lot, but without seeing the conditions you shoot under it's hard to put a definitive answer as to saying, "Yep, those precise settings will give you everything you need"; it won't, you need to be flexible.

    Obviously you need to try shooting in your own house for starters, dim/turn off lighting, put some coloured lights around if you have any, then see what you need to set to get results.

    It takes a hell of a lot of camera 'muscle' to overcome dim conditions, very surprisingly so compared to your own eye.

    Shooting in Manual, leaving shutter and aperture at a constant, *yes* you get more light with each ISO step to increase it.

    eg: Shutter 1/60th; Aperture f2.8 ISO 800 will give you a result but increasing the ISO to 1600 gives you 1 extra stop of light, then 3200 ISO is 2 stops of light over 800. All in between are 1/3rd stop increments. ISO 400 is a full 2 stops up from ISO 100, but ISO settings between say 400 and 800 are in 1/3rd stops. You merely double ISO settings to get 1 full stop.

    ISO 100; 400; 800; 1600; 3200 are full stop increments.

    Practice out somewhere at night in an area lit by street, shopfront lighting, see what you need to come up with.

    Read your 'Inbox' above to send me a file to have a look, only if you shot RAW, since if jpeg you are virtually screwed.

  • sasko1sasko1 Member
    Trev, I've send you message ;)
  • NaftoliNaftoli Member
    edited June 2012
    think of it like this, iso, aperture, and shutterspeed do the same exact thing as far as image brightness.(assuming were not using flash of course) if u click/roll the dial, be it opening the aperture, slowing the shutterspeed or raising the iso, any one of those 3 will increase image exposure by 1/3 stop they r all eqaul!
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited June 2012
    Naftoli is right of course, in manual, any setting changed increases/decreases the ambient.

    Sasko1, I looked at the RAW and it's pretty good considering. Not a great deal of noise.

    I processed it as I would have and in the RAW [used ACR] I changed the settings from Camera Standard to Adobe standard, that immediately opens it up more, also WB from As Shot [looks like it was a cross between Tungsten and Daylight] to full Daylight, gave it more warmth, then took off any blacks and any contrast and processed in photoshop.

    Check inbox for address to download.

    Now, that link you gave me, be very wary of using that site, my AV screamed at me, so I Googled the IP address and it come up with warnings from sources [all in messages in Inbox for you]

    My mate is the Australian Guru for AV/Malware for a top AV company and I've got him checking that site.

    Edit: His report: When you first click on the link to take you to where you can download, it is fine, nothing there, then when you click on the download link itself, it has a redirection within it (probably to some form of advertising website), that redirection website has become infected and it is that redirect that the AV is pouncing on, however the main download link actually continues and starts the download.

    I did not post image here, it's yours so you can if you want.

    Also using a method with image going back from PS to ACR then back to PS in an action I do, I cleaned up a lot of the noise and it will print no problem at all I should think up to 12x18, certainly anything smaller would be great.

    It's not 100% sharp but considering the circumstances very good, that guy would be happy with a print if you know him.
  • sasko1sasko1 Member
    Thanks Trev. I did not realise that download link is some kind of malware. I use this site for all my customers. I guess, from now on, I won't anymore. Thanks for warning. I never checked download myself, so didn't know it.

    I will check your image at home, since I have blocked access here at job and will take a look.

    Well, I also managed to process some images and came out OK. But still think I could do better if I reduce shutter speed to 1/125. It bothers me, that raw images are so dark. I would really like a bit brighter. That's why my initial question about only raising ISO and what happens, was here.

    and I got my answeres. Thanks for help Trev! I have another gig in 10 days, so will let you know how I managed there.

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