Nikon D50 and Sigma EF-500 DG flash - metering randomness

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Richard Corfield, Jan 7, 2006.

  1. I recently bought a Nikon D50 with the SIGMA i-TTL flash, upgrading
    from my existing Nikon F606 film camera and SB20 flash which have
    served me well. I wonder if I should have looked at the D70s or Nikon
    flashes instead. I've found a fair amount of variation in results
    with it. For a start I don't know the difference between the "TTL" and
    "TTL-BL" modes on the flash, apart from quite different exposures.
    Sometimes I'd like to turn off balancing because the lower shutter
    speed, wide aperture and enough ambient light introduces motion blur.
    I'm not sure "BL" means balance though. Doing some tests
    (http://www.littondale.me.uk/FlashTest.jpg a pretty big file) hasn't
    shed much light and variation may be down to technique. The insets are
    original size. The most true to life picture of the guitar is the fully
    manual bottom left. (It's dark blue). In less controlled point and
    shoot situations there can be even more variation. I've also found that
    it's quite easy to white things out on the digital, where I suppose
    film just takes it. Some of my point and shoot handheld shots have
    come out more "Compact Camera" than "SLR". I've noticed a softness to
    the pictures and with the flash whitening out of skin tones. A good
    example is http://www.littondale.me.uk/BounceFlashCropped.jpg (cropped
    as I've not asked the lady if she's happy to have it posted online, but
    otherwise as it came off the camera). That series of photos also had
    some soft purple fringes on the white clothing in some cases. With the
    F606 I had a much higher success rate. Does the Nikon D50 support
    pre-flash matrix metering with the two flashes in quick succession?
    Does its metering follow the focus point, in which case that could
    explain some variation if I've focused and reframed and it's now
    metering on the background. Would life be better with the Nikon SB600
    or SB800 flash? I've read that the processing on the D70 is
    different, and it may white out less. Also perhaps the colours are
    slighly less saturated. Is the flash metering on the D70 much
    different? How have people got on with the lens that comes in the D50
    kit? The D70 lens, now I've seen one, looks a lot more solid and has a
    large front element - large enough to allow it to work as a very wide
    angle lens on my 35mm film camera? The D50 is a nice lightweight SLR.
    I'd never have though I'd have liked lightweight. It can produce some
    nice results, for example http://www.littondale.me.uk/Cat_Small.jpg
    which is nice and sharp even zoomed in, but also things like
    http://www.littondale.me.uk/WashedOut.jpg. - Richard
     
    Richard Corfield, Jan 7, 2006
    #1
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  2. Sorry about the formatting. Will have to get a proper newsreader! I
    hope Google Groups / Konqueror handles this posting fine. It's not
    mangled them in the past.


    I've added a comparison shot between the D50 kit lens and my old 35-70
    at http://www.littondale.me.uk/LensComparison.jpg and wonder if either
    I have a faulty unit or the lens is not that good. Consider the bridge
    which is in front of the focus area and the guitar strap behind.
    Exposure was manual, F5.6 with the camera about 2m from the guitar and
    about 55mm focal length. I'd expect same depth of field in both cases
    though.

    The D50 lens has so many good reviews, but so many of my shots are
    coming out soft even though I'm pretty sure I'm focusing it properly
    and checking the focus area indicator is the one I want - or using the
    focus and reframe trick (not used to multiple focus areas).

    The shopkeeper wanted to be sure I wasn't doing professional
    photography with the D50 before selling it to me. I don't do
    professional photography, but expect good quality results. Would he
    have said the same about the D70s?

    - Richard

    (Last posting, I wrote - and something mangled:
    The fringes seem to be a property of the lens.
     
    Richard Corfield, Jan 8, 2006
    #2
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  3. Sorry about the formatting. Will have to get a proper newsreader! I
    hope Google Groups / Konqueror handles this posting fine. It's not
    mangled them in the past.


    I've added a comparison shot between the D50 kit lens and my old 35-70
    at http://www.littondale.me.uk/LensComparison.jpg and wonder if either
    I have a faulty unit or the lens is not that good. Consider the bridge
    which is in front of the focus area and the guitar strap behind.
    Exposure was manual, F5.6 with the camera about 2m from the guitar and
    about 55mm focal length. I'd expect same depth of field in both cases
    though.

    The D50 lens has so many good reviews, but so many of my shots are
    coming out soft even though I'm pretty sure I'm focusing it properly
    and checking the focus area indicator is the one I want - or using the
    focus and reframe trick (not used to multiple focus areas).

    The shopkeeper wanted to be sure I wasn't doing professional
    photography with the D50 before selling it to me. I don't do
    professional photography, but expect good quality results. Would he
    have said the same about the D70s?

    - Richard

    (Last posting, I wrote - and something mangled:
    The fringes seem to be a property of the lens.
     
    Richard Corfield, Jan 8, 2006
    #3

  4. try looking at this
    http://nikonasia-en.custhelp.com/cg...X5hbnl_JnBfc29ydF9ieT1kZmx0JnBfcGFnZT0x&p_li=

    Jonathan
     
    Billy no mates, Jan 9, 2006
    #4
  5. Excellent thanks. A good article.

    I now have the D70 and no flash for now. I'm looking forward to trying
    that lens on my old 35mm film camera as well!
     
    Richard Corfield, Jan 13, 2006
    #5
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