Alley in Pisa, Italy

by Lars Kotthoff

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26

I suspect you are trying to treat photography the way you would approach computer programming (your stock overflow profile indicates that you are a fairly advanced contributor on that site). I myself started out my DSLR journey with the Canon 550D + 18-55mm kit lens combo (rough equivalents of their Nikon counterparts that you possess). The lens is quite ...


19

Yes, it matters, a lot. There is little difference in image quality between cropped-sensor bodies these days and certainly a lot less compared to the difference in quality between a poor and a quality lens. Even between a D5100 and D7000 which costs much more, the quality difference is small. The same is true in Canon's line-up. Even more important, the ...


15

Apparently you have the Highlight Alert feature on. This allows you to preview areas of your picture that are overexposed (receiving too much light) and decide if this is your intention or not. This is a very handy feature, but if you prefer to turn it off you can follow this tutorial (source): Press the Menu button, then use the Multi-selector to ...


13

Page 44 in your manual! The part you're probably looking for is (quoted from the manual): Rotate the live view switch. The mirror will be raised and the view through the lens will be displayed in the camera monitor. The subject will no longer be visible in the viewfinder. The live view switch is located next to your mode dial and is ...


12

"Manual" means that it is up to you to set the correct exposure. It's conspicuous that you didn't mention what exposure settings you were using, so I'm not sure that you realize that you have to do that yourself. DSLRs have light meters in the viewfinder which show how over/under-exposed your manual settings are, according to the auto-exposure system. On ...


11

The 99% likely best answer is, of course, to send it to a competent camera repairer. Odds are 'It's broken'. However, just in case, and very very unlikely, try the following. These have almost no chance of being successful, but in a few cases may work: Remove & replace lens. Is mirror stuck up? If so, DO NOT TRY to move it. Take to repairer. If ...


10

The Nikon D60 is a very old version of the D5100. The D5000 was actually between the two in the models history. The D5100 is a step up in every important aspect, if the price is the same, I see no reason why to get the D60 over the D5100. The D5100 is the current up to date model with great high ISO performance, a flip out screen, and other current day ...


10

This is really a case of read your camera manual. If your camera did not come with a full one, there will be one on a CD. The behavior greatly varies. Usually cameras use filenames which gives them 4-digit numbering (some use 5 numbers), so you could in theory have 9999 photos in a single folder. However, cameras can break down these images in folders ...


10

For dark places you can turn off autofocus and use manual focusing. That works for focusing using the ring on the lens. To get very precise you do it after pressing the LV button. This shows the image on screen bigger. To get manual focus, press the [i] button and change AF-S (or AF-C) to MF. The lens for shooting only the moon is too short but if you want ...


10

HDR from a single RAW images does not add any dynamic-range than is captured. If the scene exceeds the dynamic-range of your camera, then no matter what you do the RAW will contained clipped channels on one or even both ends. Even if you have the best camera and use it at its optimal ISO setting, the most you get today is just above 14 stops of DR. Taking a ...


10

I live in Sweden and I own a Canon EOS 450D. So far I've never had any problems with it in temperatures down to -20 °C (apart from a somewhat reduced battery life). I wouldn't really worry about your camera not working at sub zero. Every swede I know uses his/her camera in the winter (as well as their cell phones and other electric toys) and to the best of ...


9

This is called "Bulb Mode". On most DSLRs (including the D5100), you would change to shutter priority or manual mode and slide the shutter speed larger until it reads "Bulb" or something of the sort.


8

Cameras matter too, and at the bottom end there's a considerable difference between models. That advice largely starts to apply for film or more for cameras above the 1k mark, where the basic features are all included and you're differing on the quality of included systems - not simply if they're present. That said - the kit lens included with most of ...


8

Did you try simply comparing them? As you can see, they are pretty much the same. So the main difference is the future lenses you can get for them and that that see this question. The last issue is of ergonomics and that is a personal matter. For going from Canon to Nikon you have to re-learn things, even the zoom and EC buttons turn the opposite way. The ...


8

This behavior is caused by automatic exposure bracketing. I've had someone with a Nikon D5000 behaving the same way in manual mode, and it turns out that automatic exposure bracketing caused this problem. My Pentax K-5 behaves the same way if the drive mode is set to exposure bracketing in manual exposure mode. If this does happen to you again, make sure ...


7

The D5100 can bracket for exposure, which is what I suppose you call true bracketing. Technically this is AEB which stands for Auto-Exposure Bracketing. It can also bracket for WB or Adaptive D-Lighting which is what people refer to as a virtual bracket because the camera takes ONE shot and saves it 3 times, with different WB or Adaptive D-Lighting setting. ...


7

Without seeing an example image, it's hard to tell which of the following is the problem. Your lens is on manual focus. Note that having the camera's exposure dial on the green "Auto" is not the same thing as auto-focus. Auto-focus is usually controlled on the side of the lens itself with an "A/M" switch. The subject is moving too fast for your shutter ...


7

The main difference is that many options are 'locked out' and set to their defaults in Full Auto (Auto) mode. The manual has all the info you'll need on what is available and when. In decreasing order of automation the modes are... Full Auto Do everything - leave only the most basic functions open to the photographer. Scene modes Like Full-Auto with ...


6

I suspect that much of the reason for the AF lens price difference boils down to this: Canon has always had autofocus motors in their EF-mount lenses, there never was an EF mount camera with a built-in focus motor. As such, they have a lot of really old AF lens models still in production, like the 50/1.8. Nikon, on the other hand, has always had autofocus ...


6

I have owned both the d200 and the d3000 (very similar body to the d5100). The d5100 has a better sensor and a better LCD but the d200 has a much better body. The d200 is more durable, has a ton of body controls, and has a 2nd display. You can change all of the important exposure settings very quickly with just a glance down at the body. This can't be ...


6

The focus racking problem means that you're shooting in conditions that the camera is having trouble with. The subject may have low contrast, be too dim, other objects may be in the way, or the selected focus mode may be incorrect for the subject. Some solutions: If the area is too dim, causing the focus trouble, turn on some lights, use the on-camera ...


6

One thing to keep in mind is that photography, as many other activities, depends much more on how much you like it and and to keep improving than on equipment or technique. The quality of a photo is much more related to what (and when) something is being registered than how it is being recorded. It's the photographer way of seeing the world that counts. ...


6

Don't worry that the D5100 isn't listed. The picture controls can be downloaded for use by the software (View NX2) or to be uploaded onto the camera. You're only interested in making them available for View NX2, so don't need to worry about the camera model. If you haven't selected another Picture Control setting in your D5100 menu, it will have defaulted ...


6

The good news is that cameras rarely get damaged by cold, even considerably below their operating limit which is 0C for nearly all DSLRs except some from Pentax. The bad news is that they stop working quickly. How quickly depends on the ambient temperature and particular camera. What fails first is the batter which looses it ability to supply current while ...


6

Short Answer: Focus mode is how the camera focus while the AF-area is where the camera focus. Focus modes AF-S/One Shot AF - Find focus only once while the release button is half-pressed AF-C/AI Servo AF - Find focus until the release button is fully pressed or released AF-A/AI Focus AF - Let the camera decide if it should use AF-S or AF-C MF - The ...


5

Firstly, the classic advice 'invest in lenses not bodies' is somewhat out of date these days; it's really a leftover from the days of film. With film cameras, the body is little more than a light-proof box holding the film, so you were better off investing in really good glass. Nowadays, however, the body has much more to do with the final image - the ...


5

On most (all?) cameras I have seen, the directories are numbered starting at 100, and the files are numbered 0000-9999 in each folder for up to 10,000 images in each folder. One logical reason I can think of to split files like this is to avoid running into filesystem limits with the maximum number of files per directory. For FAT32, which most modern ...


5

You can configure the back button on your camera that is AF/AE lock to lock your focus. You'll focus, press the button, and the focus will lock until pressed again. You want to go to the menu and select "buttons' and then set the button to "AF Lock" I believe.


5

The number of images required to produce an HDR result without clipped highlights or shadows depends entirely on the scene being photographed, not on the dynamic range of your output device. RAW images may contain a greater range than you can display on your monitor, but that doesn't really matter as you will compress the dynamic range anyway as part of the ...


5

The sync speed itself doesn't change, as that is defined by how quickly the shutter curtains move, but what is happening is the trigger is adding a delay, which throws off the timing. What ought to happen at 1/200s is that the first curtain reaches the top, the flash fires, then the second curtain starts closing immediately from the bottom. However due to ...



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