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Blue Tit

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Taken from a hide; using a borrowed tripod and borrowed Nikkor 200-400 mm lens using manual focusing. I've upped the contrast a little - hope you like this - I am not very confident with Photoshop CS6! Any advice and modifications would be most welcome.

Brand:NIKON CORPORATION
Camera:Nikon D600 Check out Nikon Nation!
Lens:Nikkor 200-400mm F4 Check out Nikon Nation!
Recording media:RAW (digital)
Date Taken:4 May 2013 - 12:22 PM
Focal Length:400mm
Lens Max Aperture:f/4.0
Aperture:f/5.6
Shutter Speed:1/4000sec
Exposure Comp:-5/3
ISO:640
Exposure Mode:Aperture-priority AE
Metering Mode:Multi-segment
Flash:Off, Did not fire
White Balance:Manual
Title:Blue Tit
Username:HP1485 HP1485
Uploaded:8 May 2013 - 9:22 AM
Tags:Bird, Blue tit, Essex, RRV, Wildlife / nature
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Comments

This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.
Rock
Rock e2 Member 12Rock vcard England2 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 9:30 AM

Slightly too much noise.
Other wise a fine capture.

Rock

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paulbroad
paulbroad  781 forum posts United Kingdom855 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 10:10 AM

Would have been nice but you are heavily over processed. As mentioned on an earlier effort, ISO200 is enough with a tripod and lower shutter speed. The lower the ISO, the better the quality whatever the camera manufacturers say about high ISO performance.

The heavy grainy effect here is due to high ISO and then over sharpening.

Paul

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banehawi
banehawi Critique Team 10875 forum postsbanehawi vcard Canada2875 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 2:51 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

Hi Sue.

The making of the image starts before Photoshop. CS6 is like any Photoshop before it, just with more features, many of which you will never use.

So, settings. Again a high ISO, very high shutter speed, and an OK aperture. That fast shutter speed was made even faster using the EC of -5/3, which is how its 1/4000.

Im intrigued why you use such a high ISO. At 400mm, hand held, a shutter speed of 1/1000 is more than adequate for a stationary subject if you have normal hand holding abilities, - hold the lens along its barrel for support. If you anticipate the subject moving a lot, then 1/2000 should be quite OK. This leaves you the ability, using the same aperture, to lower your ISO to 320, - a lot less noisy.

The noise is exaggerated as Paul says by post processing, but also I think by a heavy crop. Cropping a small area from a larger shot will magnify noise, making it much more visible, to the point it becomes an issue.

Sharpening and contrast are very close cousins, and work in similar ways, so you need to be very careful whn using both, as you can, as here, really exaggerate sharpness as well as noise.

The crop is too tight, leaving little room above the bird. I have uploaded a mod with Noise Ninja used to reduce noise; Ive added canvas for better placement of the bird; I reduced sharpness by adding a tiny amount of Gaussian blur; and I adjusted the colour balance.

Hope all this helps, - and have a go at the lower ISO, not so small crops, and see how it goes. CS6 can reduce noise. Its under filter>Noise>reduce noise, and you can adjust the strangth of noise reduction, the retained detail, and sharpening all in one place.


Regards


Willie

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Trev_B
Trev_B e2 Member 7110 forum postsTrev_B vcard England64 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 4:40 PM

Hi Sue, I agree with Willie that the crop is too tight and that the shutter speed of 1/4000 is too fast. You would have been better to use f8 and a slower speed .

I don't believe the noise would have come from the ISO of 640 as the D600 is a very modern full frame camera more than capable of handling very high ISO's. The noise in my opinion would have come from the post production and as this image is over sharpened would suspect that this is one of the culprits. There can be a tendency to over sharpen and there is plenty of good information in the techniques section of the site explaining how best to sharpen and size images for use on the site.

Trev

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HP1485
HP1485  7 England5 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 4:59 PM

Thank you all for your comments. Its a great big learning curve for me. I will try and post original shot tomorrow without any adjustment so you can see where I started from. I am struggling with remembering how to set up the D600 when I am on a photo day, and then I get into panic mode when I realise that the settings are all wrong - just pleased that something came out!! I will make a note to follow your leads next time I'm out.

Sue

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Trev_B
Trev_B e2 Member 7110 forum postsTrev_B vcard England64 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 7:22 PMConstructive Critique!This comment was flagged as constructive critique! 

Hi again Sue... there are many things to remember when starting out, so to start with set your camera up when you first arrive and fire off a couple of stats at the perch. Then you can judge if you need to increase the ISO to achieve the shutter speed and aperture that you want. Set the camera to record RAW and JPG, you might not be ready to process RAW images, however the files will be available if you decide to have a go.

I set my Nikon D700 to Aperture priority, an aperture of f8 and an ISO to give me a speed around 1/500. Auto focus to continuous and single point focusing, exposure to Spot metering, White balance to Direct Sunlight or Cloudy and shutter release to continuous.

Everyone sets their camera up differently, however when you are starting out this may help you concentrate on taking the images rather than worrying about the camera setup.

Hope it helps Trev

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HP1485
HP1485  7 England5 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 7:30 PM

Thanks Trevor - I usually set my camera up to Aperture priority and cloudy WB. I aim for f/5.6 or f/8 - what I was struggling with was using an unfamiliar lens, and co-ordinating the ISO with the shutter speed at the aperture I had chosen. Obviously need more practice so will have to book another session soon! Thanks for your help. I will print out what you suggested and set my camera up accordingly for the next photoshoot! I certainly found my film SLR much easier to use!!!
Sue

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banehawi
banehawi Critique Team 10875 forum postsbanehawi vcard Canada2875 Constructive Critique Points
8 May 2013 - 8:18 PM

You can upload originals now Sue by clicking the modification tab, then upload a modification.

Willie

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paulbroad
paulbroad  781 forum posts United Kingdom855 Constructive Critique Points
9 May 2013 - 7:45 AM

Camera set up has to depend on subject and lens. If we are just having a walk I might have a standard zoom fitted, say 18/250 OS Sigma. I set an ISO dependant on weather, but as I might use 250 (400) mm, then at least ISO200, possibly 400 but no more. Aperture priority f8 to get the best from the lens. Single shot autofocus and matrix metering. Auto white balance.

Shoot RAW by all means if you fully understand RAW processing. If not, shoot Best JPG or, better, RAW + Best JPG. Then experiment with the RAW processor knowing what a BEST JPG looks like. RAW is better if you use it correctly. Can be a disaster if you don't.

Be very careful with spot. Trev suggests it above but if you do not fully understand your camera yet, do not use spot metering on any auto setting. It is important that the spot reading is on the right toned part of the subject, something that resembles 18% grey. Do you know what 18% grey looks like in colour? Few do!

Normal UK grass is a good example.

Best to use spot metering intelligently with the camera set to manual. Any other settings are then made depending on time, subject, lens and general conditions. Always return the camera to you 'standard' settings at the end of the session. ALWAYS!


Paul

Ch

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