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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
What's the reasoning behind shooting higher ISO if the end result has noise in it? I see sometimes where people say to bump up the ISO and I understand that doing so allows one to use a faster shutter speed in low light, but when I've done that, I get noise. Especially when I crop the pic.
Or do I just need to go back and read "photography for idiots" again?
 

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The only time I up the ISO is in,low lighting situations. and you are right you will get some noise. If you do not like that route start buying up flash equipment.
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The range of ISO and the level of noise produced is entirely dependent on the camera body and the sensor it has inside. Just a few years ago, I was using a Nikon D200 which produced ugly noise above ISO 800. At least this was the point it became unacceptable to me even though I would go beyond that point on occassion. Next was a D2X and I felt its limit was around ISO 1000 and now I can shoot with a Nikon D3 and go all the way to ISO 6400 and have less noise in my images than either of the other bodies I mentioned.

However, I still see a noticable difference in the images when I go above ISO 2000 although the problem is not necessarily noise.

Low light (high ISO) capability comes at a price. However technology is constantly producing better sensors at a lower cost. The Nikon D700 has about the same capability as the D3 or D3s for considerably less expense. Of course, cost again becomes a factor as you have to decide how often you can/will replace your body with a newer model. Technology currently dictates replacing a body about every three years if you want to stay current.

Nikon manufactures absolutely the best shoe mounted flashes available! However the SB600 is at the low end with regard to power and options. The SB900 is fantastic and just a bit better than the SB800. Many shooters are replacing their 800s with the newer 900 so the used market should be pretty good. You can try Adorama, B&H or KEH to see what is available. Adding in the SD9 or SD8 battery pack is a plus also.

Nissin makes a lower priced shoe flash (see their top of the line) but their battery pack is a bit pricey!

That does not mean you cannot produce great images with what you are cuurrently using. You have to understand exactly what your gear is capable of and what limits produce images which satisfy you.

In post processing, you can use Lightroom or Noise Ninja to correct some of the noise in your images. Just about all editing programs will remove some noise but those two are pretty popular.

So, just work within the capabilities of your gear and what you find to be acceptable. Then go out and make the best images you can and don't worry about what everyone else is doing.

JMHO - Joe
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The range of ISO and the level of noise produced is entirely dependent on the camera body and the sensor it has inside. Just a few years ago, I was using a Nikon D200 which produced ugly noise above ISO 800. At least this was the point it became unacceptable to me even though I would go beyond that point on occassion. Next was a D2X and I felt its limit was around ISO 1000 and now I can shoot with a Nikon D3 and go all the way to ISO 6400 and have less noise in my images than either of the other bodies I mentioned.

However, I still see a noticable difference in the images when I go above ISO 2000 although the problem is not necessarily noise.

Low light (high ISO) capability comes at a price. However technology is constantly producing better sensors at a lower cost. The Nikon D700 has about the same capability as the D3 or D3s for considerably less expense. Of course, cost again becomes a factor as you have to decide how often you can/will replace your body with a newer model. Technology currently dictates replacing a body about every three years if you want to stay current.

Nikon manufactures absolutely the best shoe mounted flashes available! However the SB600 is at the low end with regard to power and options. The SB900 is fantastic and just a bit better than the SB800. Many shooters are replacing their 800s with the newer 900 so the used market should be pretty good. You can try Adorama, B&H or KEH to see what is available. Adding in the SD9 or SD8 battery pack is a plus also.

Nissin makes a lower priced shoe flash (see their top of the line) but their battery pack is a bit pricey!

That does not mean you cannot produce great images with what you are cuurrently using. You have to understand exactly what your gear is capable of and what limits produce images which satisfy you.

In post processing, you can use Lightroom or Noise Ninja to correct some of the noise in your images. Just about all editing programs will remove some noise but those two are pretty popular.

So, just work within the capabilities of your gear and what you find to be acceptable. Then go out and make the best images you can and don't worry about what everyone else is doing.

JMHO - Joe
Thanks Joe, I recently got Topaz Noise and have used it to clean up some noise in a few pics I took at night. It seems to work pretty good from what I see. I also need to pay more attention to my camera settings when I'm out there too. I know that will help. I sometime get "caught up in the moment" when I'm shooting close to the line. :)
 

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Fast glass helps to. That's why I'll never sell my 300 f/2.8. This is from Petit on Saturday.




Both are ISO 400, f/5.6 for one, and f/5 for the other. I use Nik Define 2.0 for noise reduction. Use flash as a last resort, or just stop taking pictures when it gets too dark. Flash ruins shots like this. The cars paint and graphics blow out, and it does very bad things to the wheel motion making it look like shit.
 
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