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The 'expose to the Right' article is Here - hope it helps but as a D70s user I do not experience many examples of chronic underexposure.
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i bought a D70s a few weeks back, fully intending to use this ALONG SIDE my Nikon F80....lol i havn't put film in the latter since as far as the D70s is concerned, i find it tends to OVEREXPOSE by 1/2 a stop if anything, especially when using the flash at close quarters, so i just dial in the needed compensation, i find it to be a superb camera
I have a similar experience as "tepot." My F80s has been idling for over a year now. After getting the D70s I have disposed off the Coolpix 4500, which served me well, but I was longing for complete manual control. To over come your problem you have to know you camera inside out, you will not find answers nor help from Nikon, believe me. Ever since going digital I have read about 50 books on the same and read every possible article on the same and have come to a conclusion that if you want perfect images, then go manual. I know that it is easier said than done expecially if you are out shooting fast stuff. I also rely heavily on Photoshop to get those images perfect. Use your camera as if it was a child, and you a parent or a psychologist, get that connection with your gear, jus try it, if it does not work go get the Canon 5D, especially with 200 off, it is a great deal.
Hello Richard. I think you've had some good advice here, especially from the likes of Cheryl Surry - who clearly knows how to get the best from Nikon DSLRs! However, I thought I'd throw my 2 pence in just in case.
The D70 underexposing is, apparently a common problem. As has been said the D70 will bias towards keeping highlight data.... but in most instances this results in an underexposed image and, as you've found, a histogram biased towards the mid to dark end.... this is also causing low contrast. Having a nice, full range of tones is the only way to get decent contrast. Boosting contrast in post will help, but will also exagerate image noise.
Also, DSLR cameras, by default, produce images that have little image procesisng applied (none in the case of RAW/NEF files.) The idea being its assumed the user will want some control in post and therefore the camera applies the minimum of contrast, sharpening and saturation tweaks. If you want to shoot JPG you might want to experiment with increasing these settings in camera to produce images with more punch.
I personally only ever use the camera in Manual exposure mode with centre weighted metering. If in situations where I have to react quickly to a shot I make sure I have already set a shutter speed suitable for hand holding and then set apperture and ISO based on metering from the ground or sky or somehting. This generally works fine, although you might want to use shutter/aperture priority and set the ISO to autoISO.
I realise it might be frustrating not using the pre-set modes, but these are really just gimmiky and, quite restrictive...... better to decide your own choice of ISO, shutter, apperture and flash output to get predictable results.
Finally, shoot based on the histogram and try to get a full range of tones... this will, as said by others, mean "over-exposing" but the histogram is your friend! Trust it and you'll get good exposures.
Finally, shoot RAW! the larger dynamic range is worth it alone. Also, find a good, reliable post workflow. Post work on images is part of shooting digital..... its the only way to get the best from your images. Put aside any doubts about cheating or whatever.... a simple contrast tweak, colour tweak and bit of sharpening is standard procedure and will really help a good image realise its potential.
Good luck, and I hope you feel happier about your camera soon.
I had similar problems with my D100, but when I found this site .. www.planetneil.com ... it told me all about custom curves, one was downloaded, installed and hey presto !! it sang to me
Back late to this thread, and not read all the posts that have arrived since my answer. But did read your dismissive 'thanks anyway' ...
Hmmmmm, so you're a "photographer" (according to your profile - inference pro?) who shoots JPEG in P mode and you're complaining about lack of control and sh!tty images ...
Fantastic - sell me your D70 - at a knock down price as it's soooo crap - and you can buy a digi p&s which you will be more happy with. A DSLR is a creative tool, not a magic box that guarantees award winning images on auto.
I wonder if you DO have a 'full knowledge and understanding of photography' ...
Sort of agree with the above.
Why do you put so much emphasis on the mode things?
My 300D sits in manual and raw, nowt else. I feel as a rank amateur even I am competent enough not need any of the mode things. One last thing, why is a pro tog using a D70? Surely this camera is aimed at the beginner end of the market?
Sorry but I disagree with all the bad points made about the D70. If you would have read reviews before buying it you will no doubt have found out that the D70 tends to underexpose. And as for tonal range you wont find a better camera to capture it.
That said just the other day I converted from my 300D to a d70s knowing the problems that lie in ISO noise. But I understand thats because the Nikon does NO in camera processing with noise at all.
I just cant wait for it to arrive, Im soooo impatient.
Quote: One last thing, why is a pro tog using a D70? Surely this camera is aimed at the beginner end of the market?
You would be suprised how many Pro Wedding Photogs use the D70.
Quote: You would be suprised how many Pro Wedding Photogs use the D70.
Perhaps because it underexposes and stops the wedding dress from blowing out?
Gav...Nice to see we both use the same(black)300D in raw mode.
i'm starting to think i have the only D70s on the market that OVEREXPOSES :-!
The D70 (and D100) is set to underexpose mid-grey by 2/3 of a stop. The challenge digital camera sensors face is that unlike film the characteristic curve does not have a shoulder in the highlight area. The best way to correct for this is to use a custom curve. You can read more about custom curves on my blog here.
Thanks for all the responses to my query.
It's nice to see a varied range of responses, from the constructive to the dismissive.
It's quite obvious to me that everyone who has replied to me has a different viewpoint on the roll of the camera in a photographer's work.
From a simple tool to complete a task, to an extension of their own self.
I would be one of the former. My camera is not a status symbol about my ability or competence. It is a piece of kit, a box with a whole in the front. A piece of machinery that with the help of detailed and enthusiastic criticism, i can use to it's limited fullest. Afterall it has no creative ability without someone to use it.
I have come to the final conclusion, that buying a digital camera has been one of the most time consuming and draining experiences of my career.
There was recently a poll to ask if buying a digital camera has made you more creative. I would have to say no. I still prefer to work with film, for obvious reasons.
Thank you to all who posted a reply, for your help in this matter. Maybe one day...
Quote: The best way to correct for this is to use a custom curve.
for advanced users only i would think! better to leave the camera alone and use post editing for corrections, else Nikon is going to recieve a lot of D70's back for repairs/resetting to factory defaults after people mess with it.
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