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Photographer
Power Bost Photography
Posts: 80
Santa Barbara, California, US


Just got a D7000 (yay!), and sat down and read the manual like a good boy. There's a lot of features in this camera, and in others, that seem to be there for amateurs (scene mode, auto mode, etc.) instead of just learning the basics of shutter speed, apeture, iso, etc. etc.
But other features look very powerful. The manual is okay in explaining what something does, but rarely says why you would want to use it.

So I'm wondering what you all out there actually use on a day to day basis when shooting models. Do you have a favorite autofocus setting? Do you ever think, thank goodness this camera has 39 focus areas? What tech has improved your shooting?
Dec 03 12 02:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Aaron Lewis Photography
Posts: 5,083
Catskill, New York, US


I always use single spot focusing. It's more controllable and I know what I've focused on. Using more than one point is great for landscapes but I can't see how it helps anything in the studio.

I love the additional grip, the ability to have the shutter release in the right spot while vertical is priceless.

Dual cards is also an excellent feature. JPG to 1 and RAW to the other. This provides you an easy way to give the client JPG's for review, if they like, while retaining the RAW images.

Most non photographer people have a hard enough time understanding focal length let alone ISO, Aperture and shutter speed, then how to use them with and against one another. That's asking a lot. Yes they're consumer features. However, they can also get you out of a bind when you're on the go.

I never take my camera out of manual but to each his own.
Dec 03 12 02:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Good Egg Productions
Posts: 15,383
Orlando, Florida, US


Power Bost Photography wrote:
Just got a D7000 (yay!), and sat down and read the manual like a good boy. There's a lot of features in this camera, and in others, that seem to be there for amateurs (scene mode, auto mode, etc.) instead of just learning the basics of shutter speed, apeture, iso, etc. etc.
But other features look very powerful. The manual is okay in explaining what something does, but rarely says why you would want to use it.

So I'm wondering what you all out there actually use on a day to day basis when shooting models. Do you have a favorite autofocus setting? Do you ever think, thank goodness this camera has 39 focus areas? What tech has improved your shooting?

I have a D800.

In the last 6 months, I've used the following:

All shooting modes except P.
Low speed burst
Mirror up lock (for cleaning)
Video recording (in almost all modes)
Use both the camera mic and mic input on the camera
Used both automatic and manual mic levels
Live view shooting
Interval shooting (to build a "video" slideshow)
Time Lapse shooting (star movement at night and then an FX makeup application shoot)
I often use about a third of all the focus points during a shoot.
Hell... I even use the horizon indicators when I accidentally activate them during a shoot.
Manual and auto focus modes.

I had been waiting for the D800 for about 2 years before it was even announced and was strongly considering moving to Canon during that time since they were so far ahead with the prosumer priced full frame bodies and video on board.  But the D800 was everything I wanted and continues to deliver for me.  Except on board wifi.  All modern DSLRs should come with a wifi radio in them.

Dec 03 12 02:22 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
ontherocks
Posts: 22,361
Salem, Oregon, US


my 5D MK II has something called highlight priority mode which i love. it also lets me create a custom menu for my most common operations.

otherwise i tend to keep it fairly simple. usually in manual or sometimes in AV mode. i do use predictive/follow focus at times.
Dec 03 12 02:24 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
J O H N A L L A N
Posts: 9,996
Santa Ana, California, US


Very few - I shoot in manual. I use the ability to set custom white balance.
I use autofocus.
Dec 03 12 02:31 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kaouthia
Posts: 3,152
Lancaster, England, United Kingdom


Power Bost Photography wrote:
Do you have a favorite autofocus setting? Do you ever think, thank goodness this camera has 39 focus areas? What tech has improved your shooting?
Aaron Lewis Photography wrote:
I always use single spot focusing. It's more controllable and I know what I've focused on.

I use all my camera's AF modes depending on what I'm shooting.  They all work, you just need to know how they work and which is most appropriate for what you want to do.

I've used pretty much all the features my D100, D200 and D300s bodies have had to offer over the time I've owned them.  None of them have scene modes, that I'm aware of, and I wouldn't use them if they did. smile

Day to day, relatively few.  Manual exposure, custom WB, AF, and either an SB-900 commander on the hotshoe with SB-900 slaves, or radio triggers for regular speedlights or studio strobes.

Dec 03 12 02:37 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Neil Snape
Posts: 9,457
Paris, Île-de-France, France


like John, I just use manual, and recently Aperture P with compensation. I can urn on and off highlight alert. I set autofocus points.

Not really using much on my 5D
Dec 03 12 02:38 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Looknsee Photography
Posts: 21,253
Portland, Oregon, US


I use...

...  Auto-focus, because my eyesight isn't all that great.
...  I use manual mode, especially when working with my studio strobes.
...  I use program model when I'm lazy.
...  I love a tilting, pivoting live preview LCD screen.  I wish it was detachable.
...  I use a cable release.
...  I use a tripod often.
...  I use the white balance adjustments.
...  I use a hot shoe for my Pocket Wizards, although a sync cord works, too.
...  I use different lenses.

That's mostly it.
Dec 03 12 02:40 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
You Can Call Me Pierre
Posts: 748
Montreal, Quebec, Canada


AF fine tune, 14-bit NEF, Active-D lighting and FV lock.
Dec 03 12 02:41 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Caveman Creations
Posts: 580
Fort Worth, Texas, US


39 AF points? Wanna see a guy vasectomize himself? Give ME 39 AF points! hmm I have the 5D MKII, and generally compared to what's out today, it's a dinosaur. I use all 9 of my AF points, but mostly just the center, as it's the only Cross-type AF point. It tends to be a bit more accurate, and easier to use in low light, such as the Christmas light shoot I just did for a family over the weekend.

I really only use "M"  mode, although, in a tough situation I would use AV, or TV depending on what I was trying to accomplish. I didn't even know it had a "P" mode, or an auto mode for months after I got it!

Being as it is the 5D MKII, I have been practicing video, and getting better at it. I have a guy in town who wants to shoot a before/after/during video as he remodels his building. That little feature might come in handy.

Don't have horizon markers, levelers, whatever you call those, but that would be nice. Not something needed, but it would be nice. I do use the DOF button on it in certain situations, to see how trees, shrubs, buildings, and the like will be rendered. I normally shoot an outdoor scene at f-16+, almost ALWAYS over f-8,  I want to make sure that if it is blown out (out of focus), it is done well. I have found that at small, to tiny apertures, the bokeh can be chunky, or very unpleasing at times, that is...... if there is any.

I do manual focus as often as needed. ONLY when needed, and being the camera I have, sometimes it's the only way. I was shooting some kids not too long ago in the person's living room. They had a BEAUTIFUL sunlight coming in through the back door, and when I put the kids head in front of the sun, my 5D looked back at me and said, "You're kidding, right?!" So it's a good thing the 85 1.8 has a full time manual focus override! I think I even felt it try to shake it's head, dunno.

Like I said, with as many advancements that are coming out now, and as quickly as they are coming out, my "archaic" 5D seems to be a bit behind on "Features", but it does everything I need it to do and more. The IQ is beyond my photographic abilities at the moment, (my entire port here was shot on that one camera) so even if it doesn't have an owners manual thick enough to rival War and Peace, it has plenty for me, and I use as much of it as possible, when needed! ;-)
Dec 03 12 02:44 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Power Bost Photography
Posts: 80
Santa Barbara, California, US


Good Egg Productions wrote:
I have a D800.

In the last 6 months, I've used the following:

All shooting modes except P.
Low speed burst
Mirror up lock (for cleaning)
Video recording (in almost all modes)
Use both the camera mic and mic input on the camera
Used both automatic and manual mic levels
Live view shooting
Interval shooting (to build a "video" slideshow)
Time Lapse shooting (star movement at night and then an FX makeup application shoot)
I often use about a third of all the focus points during a shoot.
Hell... I even use the horizon indicators when I accidentally activate them during a shoot.
Manual and auto focus modes.

I had been waiting for the D800 for about 2 years before it was even announced and was strongly considering moving to Canon during that time since they were so far ahead with the prosumer priced full frame bodies and video on board.  But the D800 was everything I wanted and continues to deliver for me.  Except on board wifi.  All modern DSLRs should come with a wifi radio in them.

Yes, I have a feeling all new prosumer and on up cameras in 2013 will have wifi. Also touchscreens. And the Panasonic GH3 has the ability to be controlled by an iPad or something crazy. Not that you'd use it in model photography...but still.

Dec 03 12 02:50 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Sendu
Posts: 3,499
Cambridge, England, United Kingdom


I use the little quick controller on my Canon 5D to select a single focus point, and then I use back-button auto focus.

I'm in manual mode, so occasionally I'll turn a dial to adjust the aperture.

Beyond that I tend to use the shutter button quite a lot. That's about it.
Dec 03 12 02:55 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
R_Marquez
Posts: 4,612
San Francisco, California, US


I can't name what I do, or don't use, but at one point or another, I've used almost everything my bodies can do.

If I had a 6D, I'd definitely use wifi. If I had a 1Dx/5D3, I'd use the AF microadjustment on both ends of a zoom and I'd play with some of the built-in processing tools to send eye-fi shots to phone/tablets, etc...

For the most part, newer bodies have made life easier for me as far as shooting goes. I can do with a plain old camera, but I'm glad that I don't have to.
Dec 03 12 03:02 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Raoul Isidro Images
Posts: 6,121
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia


The Toggle Wheel Comparison

Comparing 2 similar shots, zoom to the MAX on the LCD, and use the wheel (Canon) to compare the images for focus and sharpness.

On Nikons, you can also do this, even on lower end cameras!

Just zoom in to the MAX and use the Nikon rear thumb wheel to toggle! (Nikon never tells you this, even on the manuals!) HA! Da secret ees out Nikon! smile

http://www.ephotozine.com/articles/dslr-group-test-11857/images/canon_eos_50d_wheelTM.jpg

http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/NikonD40/images/Nikon-D40-top-controls.jpg

.
Dec 03 12 03:08 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Power Bost Photography
Posts: 80
Santa Barbara, California, US


Blimey! So many replies so quickly, thanks everyone!

Customizing a menu is something I want to look into, as I spend a lot of time digging...but the D7000 has pretty much everything on the body.

I guess, also, that you don't realize you need a feature until something happens and then it saves your ass.
Dec 03 12 03:10 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Extrosy
Posts: 656
Minneapolis, Minnesota, US


Fv lock assigned to one of the buttons when using i-TTL flash.   
This will pre-measure the flash exposure so that they aren't blinking for the primary flash.
Dec 03 12 03:12 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
me voy
Posts: 1,043
Amherst, Massachusetts, US


The features I use the most on my Nikon D700 and I would like to know if the Nikon D800 have them:

Dynamic AF Area, 51 points (3D Tracking) and
Function Botton set to FV Lock for flash

I don't think I can live without these two features. Any Nikon shooters know if the D800 have these.
Dec 03 12 03:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
me voy
Posts: 1,043
Amherst, Massachusetts, US


Extrosy wrote:
Fv lock assigned to one of the buttons when using i-TTL flash.   
This will pre-measure the flash exposure so that they aren't blinking for the primary flash.

Actually, the pre-measure of the flash exposure is so that you can recompose. It has nothing to do with blinking of the eyes.

Dec 03 12 03:17 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Extrosy
Posts: 656
Minneapolis, Minnesota, US


me voy wrote:
The features I use the most on my Nikon D700 and I would like to know if the Nikon D800 have them:

Dynamic AF Area, 51 points (3D Tracking) and
Function Botton set to FV Lock for flash

I don't think I can live without these two features. Any Nikon shooters know if the D800 have these.

They are both on the D800.

I also set the middle joy-pad button thing to snap-zoom to 100% at the focus point.

Dec 03 12 03:18 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Extrosy
Posts: 656
Minneapolis, Minnesota, US


me voy wrote:

Actually, the pre-measure of the flash exposure is so that you can recompose. It has nothing to do with blinking of the eyes.

That may be it's intended purpose, however I find it much more useful in preventing people from blinking during the main flash.

Dec 03 12 03:19 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AVD AlphaDuctions
Posts: 10,533
Gatineau, Quebec, Canada


I use the red scene mode to tell a model they are burning up and need to put on sunscreen. I used the blue when I was lazy and wanted to capture pools of water reflecting a summer blue sky. I'm always either on centre-spot AF single shot or right-spot for fashion shows. I use MF only when I'm too lazy to turn on a modeling light. I probably should have a card in  the spare slot but I'm too lazy so I just carry cards in my pack. I used burst modes maybe twice on one of the cameras. I assume the others have it but havent bother to find in the screen or menu system.
Dec 03 12 03:20 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
me voy
Posts: 1,043
Amherst, Massachusetts, US


Extrosy wrote:

That may be it's intended purpose, however I find it much more useful in preventing people from blinking during the main flash.

OK, got it.

So, the D800 has those two features. Good because I need a new body and I couldn't find those features on the D600 at Costco so I thought they were gone forever.

Dec 03 12 03:23 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
JGC Photography
Posts: 134
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada


Most used feature is Manual smile
I have used live view a couple of times.
Dec 03 12 03:24 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
me voy
Posts: 1,043
Amherst, Massachusetts, US


JGC Photography wrote:
Most used feature is Manual smile
I have used live view a couple of times.

That's not a feature, that's a setting.

Dec 03 12 03:25 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Images by MR
Posts: 7,616
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


I've got the D7000 & use whatever camera features needed to get the shot I want.

But would have to say the shutter button is the most used smile
Dec 03 12 03:41 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
JeanDphoto
Posts: 1,345
Knowlton, Quebec, Canada


I whish they had Auto-Creative Mode ! The rest can be figured out a couple of days before becoming obsolete :-)
Dec 03 12 03:42 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
nwprophoto
Posts: 13,911
Kalibo, Western Visayas, Philippines


Power Bost Photography wrote:
So I'm wondering what you all out there actually use on a day to day basis when shooting models.

Manual exposure, manual focus.
Camera never leaves those settings (shrug).

Dec 03 12 03:46 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
730372
Posts: 1,952
Abbeville, Alabama, US


Manual exp with lock. I always lock the shutter speed to avoid accidentally changing the speed, esp when shooting with flash.

On my D3 you can program one of the function buttons to act as flash override which I find useful.
Dec 03 12 03:52 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
KMP
Posts: 4,768
Houston, Texas, US


On the D800 I really like the horizon/level setting. This is especially true with extra wide lenses.
Dec 03 12 03:56 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AG_Boston
Posts: 345
Boston, Massachusetts, US


I use full manual for:
ISO
Aperture
Exposure
Flash
White balance

I use:
single point auto focus
Aperture preview (single button on my Canon camera)
PC port studio flash connection
Single shot for models
Rapid fire shots for sports
10second timer for extended tripod night scenes (sometimes 2 seconds)

Too many features to list which I make use of. Just about the only automated thing I make use of is the auto focus. Everything else I do myself.
Dec 03 12 07:58 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
KA Style
Posts: 1,583
Syracuse, New York, US


Aaron Lewis Photography wrote:
I always use single spot focusing.

I never take my camera out of manual but to each his own.

This is how I roll.

Dec 03 12 08:01 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Æmagine
Posts: 6,096
Biloxi, Mississippi, US


Apart from the normal manual settings, jpeg mode, jpeg+raw, custom w/b, spot focus, spot meter, average meter, exp/flash compensation, in camera adjustments for sharpening and b/w mode...

Sometimes manual focus, self timer and bulb mode on occasion.

That's about it

Edit, oh yeah... Ae-lock
Dec 03 12 08:13 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Bob Helm Photography
Posts: 18,191
Cherry Hill, New Jersey, US


Pretty much all of em, depending on what I am shooting.

Most often used are A and S priority but I do use M.
Use Back button AF a lot and use all the AF modes and options.

Rarely use Auto ISO (only use with remote cameras), self timer.

Things I do not use are FV for flash, bracketing, intervalometer.
Dec 03 12 08:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Honey Stinger
Posts: 6,342
Madison, Wisconsin, US


Caveman Creations wrote:
I have the 5D MKII, and generally compared to what's out today, it's a dinosaur.

Is it really? I use one with an 85 1.2 and I still think it's pretty OK. But I like to shoot with my A1. Maybe I'm the dinosaur.

Dec 03 12 08:21 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
291
Posts: 11,911
SEQUOIA NATIONAL PARK, California, US


Robert Helm wrote:
Pretty much all of em, depending on what I am shooting.

+1

it's the very reason why there are so many (features) to choose from.  the key is to learn what "all of em" do to create the shot and effect.  it's also why photography is a craft beyond just taking a picture.

Dec 03 12 08:21 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Troy Tribble
Posts: 247
Greenville, South Carolina, US


KA Style wrote:

This is how I roll.

Back button focusing option.

Dec 03 12 08:21 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Caveman Creations
Posts: 580
Fort Worth, Texas, US


Cuica Cafezinho wrote:

Is it really? I use one with an 85 1.2 and I still think it's pretty OK. But I like to shoot with my A1. Maybe I'm the dinosaur.

Oh, don't get me wrong........ I LOVE this camera. But then again, they don't call me "Caveman" for nothing! ;-)

I'm referring to all the latest and greatest features, new buttons, levels, AF points, etc. It just doesn't have it. But given the way I shoot, what I shoot, and everything in between, it has more than I need. Which makes it the perfect camera. Oh, sure. I'd love to fondle a MKIII, maybe play with a 1DX, or just sit in a corner and do dirty things to myself over a Hassleblad big_smile, but I won't be spending any money on a new body anytime soon. wink

Dec 03 12 08:32 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Art Silva
Posts: 9,307
Santa Barbara, California, US


Lately I have found I don't use a good majority of the features on my Nikon DSLRs.
I am to the point of dumping off all of it and go back to basics with a Leica or something similar since I usually shoot manually or Aperture Priority at best.
I rather spend my pennies now on quality lenses than all the bells and whistles of a DSLR set-up.
Dec 03 12 08:35 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AG_Boston
Posts: 345
Boston, Massachusetts, US


Caveman Creations wrote:

Oh, don't get me wrong........ I LOVE this camera. But then again, they don't call me "Caveman" for nothing! ;-)

I'm referring to all the latest and greatest features, new buttons, levels, AF points, etc. It just doesn't have it. But given the way I shoot, what I shoot, and everything in between, it has more than I need. Which makes it the perfect camera. Oh, sure. I'd love to fondle a MKIII, maybe play with a 1DX, or just sit in a corner and do dirty things to myself over a Hassleblad big_smile, but I won't be spending any money on a new body anytime soon. wink

I will NOT play with a 1DX...it will force me to purchase it... neutral True story...and more great features! (Than my 40d).

Dec 03 12 08:46 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
imcFOTO
Posts: 579
Bothell, Washington, US


Power Bost Photography wrote:
Just got a D7000 (yay!), and sat down and read the manual like a good boy. There's a lot of features in this camera, and in others, that seem to be there for amateurs (scene mode, auto mode, etc.) instead of just learning the basics of shutter speed, apeture, iso, etc. etc.
But other features look very powerful. The manual is okay in explaining what something does, but rarely says why you would want to use it.

So I'm wondering what you all out there actually use on a day to day basis when shooting models. Do you have a favorite autofocus setting? Do you ever think, thank goodness this camera has 39 focus areas? What tech has improved your shooting?

I have a D7000 too (only for a few months so still learning!) and I shoot mostly with aperture priority since I usually shoot with continuous lights and like to play with depth of field. I use live-view a lot and use the face-priority auto-focus a lot. When not in live-view, it is set to use AF-A 21 point.

I love the auto ISO and the fact that I can set minimum shutter speeds and maximum iso settings.

The biggest feature I really like over my old D80 is the user settings (U1 and U2). I have U1 set up for my regular shooting 200 to 400 with min speed 1/100th
and U2 is set for 400-1600 iso and min speed 1/100th. So if U1 is struggling, I flick to U2 knowing I will possibly get a little more grain. I am still fine tuning these. But the U1/U2 does mean I fiddle a lot less during a shoot. Note: The max iso takes priority so it will drop the speed below your minimum if it needs too. For me, aperture remains my main control the rest is about setting some limits.

I shoot raw 100% of the time. I have 2nd card slot set as overflow.

I shoot in Q mode (quiet mode) - not silent but quieter.

Dec 03 12 08:47 pm  Link  Quote 
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