Increasing Light for Photography
Planted Tank Forums
Your Tanks Image Hosting *Tank Tracker * Plant Profiles Fish Profiles Planted Tank Guide Photo Gallery Articles

Go Back   The Planted Tank Forum > General Planted Tank Forums > Photography


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-08-2005, 04:57 AM   #1
Troy McClure
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Troy McClure's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 404
Send a message via AIM to Troy McClure
Default

Increasing Light for Photography


I've decided to make a photography lighting upgrade for my 10gal ala Jay Luto's thread. Lately I've been getting too much noise in my photos and even using digital blending I'm not getting satisfactory results. This is what I've decided to go with as it seems easy to work with and inexpensive: 10" flood light, 500W bulb, 250W bulb.

I also found this 500W halogen while searching for halogen fixtures.

I don't remember much from my television and video production classes from a few years ago (hey, I'm an audio guy,) so I'd like to know if I'll need any gels, filters, diffusors, or other accessories with this setup. My biggest concern is getting the colors to reproduce the way I like them. For example, I don't like the colors rendered when using the flash on my Canon A60. It might be a simple matter of white balancing, but we'll see what happens.

Any comments or questions?
__________________
- Erik
Troy McClure is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 08-08-2005, 05:14 AM   #2
Safado
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Safado's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 504
Default

Curse you Erik! You need to put up a warning before you link to B&H. It took all of my will power to close the window without buying the lens I have been drooling over.

I think the light will work great with just a little bit of white balancing. In fact, I would imagine it will take less white balancing than the average "pink" grow lights some of us use. let us know how it works for you.
__________________
10g with shrimp
55g First true attempt at a planted tank.
Safado is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 03:41 PM   #3
Ibn
Planted Tank VIP
 
Ibn's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 3,212
Default

LOL, good thing that the lens is out of stock from, B&H there.

That's a lot of light that you're looking at there. I would be more worried with the heat issue associated with running something like that, especially in an encased hood. It actually doesn't take that much lighting to increase your shutter speed and I would look at ramping it down a bit, or finding ways to keep the heat down.

Other than that, I would worry about the white balance issue. Set your own custom white balance (don't own the A60 so don't know how that's done) and you should be set.

Another alternative is to pick up a flash unit. It will benefit all aspects of your photography, including aquatic. Here's a setup of mine that I used to shoot some fish while at a buddy's fish store a short while back (2 speedlights over approximately 1 gallon of water).


What it looks like when they fire.


Results.


__________________
Eric

Ibn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 04:06 PM   #4
Wasserpest
Are these real?
 
Wasserpest's Avatar
 
PTrader: (175/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 15,066
Default

I think we are talking about two distinct things here... how to take a full tank shot, and (Eric) how to take close-ups of your loved ones. Both important parts of the hobby, both a bit challenging, but in different ways.

For the ultimate, Amano-like tank shot adding lights might be beneficial. For the rest of us, tripod and long exposures and manual white balance and - perhaps - just a little bit of image editing will go a long way
Wasserpest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 04:24 PM   #5
Safado
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Safado's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 504
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibn
That's a lot of light that you're looking at there. I would be more worried with the heat issue associated with running something like that, especially in an encased hood. It actually doesn't take that much lighting to increase your shutter speed and I would look at ramping it down a bit, or finding ways to keep the heat down.
I am pretty sure Erik would only be using these lights for when he takes pictures of his tank and the fish. There shouldn't be too much heat transfer during this short time. A flash unit like the one you described is the best option, but they are not cheap. I think the light Erik linked to is a pretty inexpensive solution to a problem a lot of us deal with.
__________________
10g with shrimp
55g First true attempt at a planted tank.
Safado is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 05:11 PM   #6
Troy McClure
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Troy McClure's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 404
Send a message via AIM to Troy McClure
Default

Sorry for the B&H link, Safado. That's the only place I could think of when looking for lighting.

Of the few pictures of Amano's photo sessions, he has a tall box on top of the tank with one or two of the lights on top of the box. This is what I am most interested in - full tank shots. It would be great if the extra light helps in capturing better macros, but it is not necessary. The lights wouldn't be on for that long so heat shouldn't be too much of an issue. That's another reason why I felt getting a 250W and 500W bulb would allow me to experiment more. If the 500W is too much, I can kick it down to 250W. Also, those lights have a simple clip-on design which would allow me to use a second or even third light when photographing my long 85gal tank.

Ibn - Yes, the A60 for the price is quite versitile and I can set custom white balances. Hopefully I can remember from my TV Production 1 class on how to set white balance (although we were using huge TV studio cameras.) As for the flash, doesn't the camera need a hot shoe for this to work?

So my next question is - B&H lighting or the heavy-duty halogen? Spending a few extra bucks to get a dual unit worklight tree would not only provide enough light for all my tanks, but my father would be happy to have the worklights as well. I must note that the halogens do concern me with regards to heat. They get hot, hot, HOT!
__________________
- Erik
Troy McClure is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 05:29 PM   #7
jhoetzl
Planted Tank Activist
 
jhoetzl's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Scotch Plains, NJ
Posts: 1,020
Send a message via MSN to jhoetzl
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Safado
Curse you Erik! You need to put up a warning before you link to B&H. It took all of my will power to close the window without buying the lens I have been drooling over.
Just be glad you can't walk into there! It is all too close to where I work...one short subway ride away...
jhoetzl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 06:50 PM   #8
Ibn
Planted Tank VIP
 
Ibn's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 3,212
Default

Point noted. Just out of curiosity, what kind of lighting do you currently have over the 10 gallon, Erik? Also, what kind of shutter speeds are you getting with your A60 with that lighting?

As far as flashes are concerned, the camera really doesn't need a hotshoe, especially if you pick up slaves (which isn't too expensive either). Any sort of light (e.g. the flash currently on your camera) will trigger them.
__________________
Eric

Ibn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 07:54 PM   #9
Troy McClure
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Troy McClure's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 404
Send a message via AIM to Troy McClure
Default

The standard lighting I have over the 10gal is an AHS 1x36W 6700K kit. I can grow just about anything with this light and not have any problems with algae. The extra lighting is just a temporary thing during a photoshoot...an experiement if nothing else. Last night I was setting shutter speeds in the 1/60 - 1/125 range, ISO set to 100, no flash. I left the f/stop on auto.
__________________
- Erik
Troy McClure is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 08:16 PM   #10
Safado
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Safado's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 504
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troy McClure
Last night I was setting shutter speeds in the 1/60 - 1/125 range, ISO set to 100, no flash. I left the f/stop on auto.
How were the pictures turning out? I generally set the f/stop to 5.0-5.6, depending on if I am zoomed in or not, and with an ISO of 400 I am ony able to get proper exposure at about 1/60-1/90 (I set the shutter speed to auto, when using the tripod). What would this equate to with an ISO of 100, 1/15-1/22?
__________________
10g with shrimp
55g First true attempt at a planted tank.
Safado is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 11:39 PM   #11
Ibn
Planted Tank VIP
 
Ibn's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 3,212
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Troy McClure
The standard lighting I have over the 10gal is an AHS 1x36W 6700K kit. I can grow just about anything with this light and not have any problems with algae. The extra lighting is just a temporary thing during a photoshoot...an experiement if nothing else. Last night I was setting shutter speeds in the 1/60 - 1/125 range, ISO set to 100, no flash. I left the f/stop on auto.
Interested in what kind of f/stop (aperture) you're getting with those settings...
__________________
Eric

Ibn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-08-2005, 11:50 PM   #12
Ibn
Planted Tank VIP
 
Ibn's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 3,212
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Safado
How were the pictures turning out? I generally set the f/stop to 5.0-5.6, depending on if I am zoomed in or not, and with an ISO of 400 I am ony able to get proper exposure at about 1/60-1/90 (I set the shutter speed to auto, when using the tripod). What would this equate to with an ISO of 100, 1/15-1/22?
You would need quite a bit more light to make that comparison. Between ISO of 400 and 100 alone, that's quite a bit of difference there. That's 2 stops of light alone there (going from 100 to 200 is one stop and from 200 to 400 is another stop). Let's simplify it and say that you were shooting at 5.6 (since 5.0 isn't a full stop). From 5.6 to f/16, that's 3 stops there (4 stops if you're at f/22). That's a minimum of 5 stops of difference and you'll end up with a very dark picture if it doesn't come out all black.

Let's assume that you're beginning at 1/125 sec. 5 stops difference would reduce the shutter speed down to below 1/15 sec. Needless to say, even with the steadiest of hands, you won't be able to handhold that. A tripod would become a necessity and you won't be able to freeze the movement of the fish.
__________________
Eric

Ibn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2005, 12:53 AM   #13
Safado
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
Safado's Avatar
 
PTrader: (2/100%)
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Posts: 504
Default

This may need to move into the Lounge section. Erik, sorry about the hijack.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibn
You would need quite a bit more light to make that comparison. Between ISO of 400 and 100 alone, that's quite a bit of difference there. That's 2 stops of light alone there (going from 100 to 200 is one stop and from 200 to 400 is another stop).
A shutterspeed of 1/60-1/90 moving to 1/15-1/22 is an increase of 2 stops. If everything else is held constant, because I would be surprised if the camera is shooting at much lower than f(5.6).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ibn
Let's assume that you're beginning at 1/125 sec. 5 stops difference would reduce the shutter speed down to below 1/15 sec. Needless to say, even with the steadiest of hands, you won't be able to handhold that. A tripod would become a necessity and you won't be able to freeze the movement of the fish.
I think you were confused with the shutterspeed. I was assuming the aperature was held at a constant. but you are correct, at that aperature a lot more light is needed. Unless my math is off, which is very possible after 10+ hours in front of this screen, 5 stops above 1/125 sec is 32/125 sec. Add in the drop from 400-100, and you're taking a picture at about one full second.
__________________
10g with shrimp
55g First true attempt at a planted tank.
Safado is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2005, 06:33 AM   #14
Troy McClure
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
Troy McClure's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 404
Send a message via AIM to Troy McClure
Default

I don't think it's a hijack at all. I was concerned about being able to use a very fast shutter with a small aperature. Unfortunately, my cam only goes to an f/8...16 or 22 would be nice, but I haven't seen that on any Canon's except the $$$$$ DSLRs.

I'll probably order the lights tomorrow! I also need to stop by HomeDepot and pick up a few parts for the "photography canopy."
__________________
- Erik
Troy McClure is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2005, 04:41 PM   #15
Ibn
Planted Tank VIP
 
Ibn's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 3,212
Default

Actually, you can look at ISO/ASA as stops of light also. It's a bit more different than say if someone was to say stopped down (this is aperture). ISO 400 is two stops difference from ISO 100. Every halving is basically a one stop's difference (e.g. from 400 to 200 is one stop and from 200 to 100 is another stop). You can even go beyond this if you wanted, especially with film, but most digital nowadays sticks to ISO levels of 100 and more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Safado
I think you were confused with the shutterspeed. I was assuming the aperature was held at a constant. but you are correct, at that aperature a lot more light is needed. Unless my math is off, which is very possible after 10+ hours in front of this screen, 5 stops above 1/125 sec is 32/125 sec. Add in the drop from 400-100, and you're taking a picture at about one full second.
I think there has been a misread on my part here. I read it as what was the difference between going from 400 to 100 and going from f/5.6 to f/16 or f/22. Hence the long explanation between the 2 stops from going from 400 to 100 and from f/5.6 to f/16. I then transferred this over to shutter speeds with a starting point of 1/125.
__________________
Eric

Ibn is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 04:51 PM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright Planted Tank LLC 2012