Friday, 12 February 2010

First and last light

My new camera comes with a new feature - high dynamic mode. Just to be clear, the new camera is the same as I had before except it has a couple more features and the sensor is a little bigger. I was thinking of splashing out on a decent DSLR before Christmas until the world came crashing down around me so just went with something I knew and didn't cost very much.

I have to admit I don't understand the new high dynamic range feature. I know what it means - the idea is to capture both dark and bright light in an image that sensors can't usually handle, but I don't know how it does it. I guess I should do a little reading! What was really disappointing though is when I switched on the feature the camera's software took control of everything including ISO, exposure time and aperture and I could do nothing to change them. Seems I'm stuck with ISO 400 and the subsequent electronic noise.

Oh well, not a big deal, the camera still lets me set things manually as long as I don't use the new setting.

This was a picture I took from HP (9,000 ft level on Mauna Kea) a few days ago at dawn using the high dynamic range setting. It's hand-held because I was just too tired to get the tripod out - it was time for bed! Just right of centre is Pu`u O`o which has been erupting since 1983. It's a long way away!

12 hours earlier I took this photo from just outside UKIRT well after the sun had set. It was about the only place I could find out of the wind which was very strong. Since it was getting dark I had to use a long exposure so finding shelter from the wind was important - anywhere else would have resulted in one very blurry picture!

Finally, late at work today the admin staff found a great way to embarrass me. I need to pay them back and soon! I might write about it soon but in the meantime I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine's weekend!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tom, Here's a perfect article to get you started on the steep portion of the HDR learning curve:

Good luck!
Dave (Kailua-Kona)