I just received my first DLSR, D40, 2 days back. And yesterday i was playing around with it.. I wanted to take a picture of a flower (indoor, low light). Now i set the camera to Aperture priority and set it to an F stop of 4. Now i went a bit close and held my shutter button half way, i heard a click (believe its the auto focus locking), but when i push my shutter release button all the way down, there is no response!!!! Absolutely nothing... I clicked the '?' button for help and it said Low light. Flash recommended. But i did not want to turn the flash on and spoil the shot.
So now my question... In the above case can't i take a picture without flash in low light?? How do i go around this? I dont want to use flash!! Am i doing something wrong here??
Thanks for your response... Yes i definitely think its becoz of the camera not able to focus properly!! When i hold the shutter release button half way, I do hear a beep, and one of the three brackets turn red for a short time... But thanks for the manual focusing tip, will try that next time..
What lens are you using ? It is likely that the lens is having a difficult time acquiring the correct focus with auto focus. This is a lens issue and not the camera. You can manual focus or mount the camera on a tripod, put some more light on the subject and focus, then release the shutter with a remote or the timer function.
It sounds like your light level is too low for the lens you're using or you just don't have enough subject contrast to achieve a consistent AF lock.
The red sensor brackets do indicate focus or the lack thereof, they simply illustrate which sensor is active and being used to 'read' the subject. Focus is indicated by a steady green dot in the lower left area of your viewfinder. The audible beep is also an indicator albeit a less reliable one in low light scenarios.
One technique you can use in this kind of situation is to look for a strong line of some sort that's in the same focal plane as your subject. Get a good lock on the line, hold the focus, and recompose. This method can give a fella fits when using a very fast lens wide open (very thin depth of field), but I'm guessing you're using one of the variable aperture kit lenses with a slower (smaller), maximum aperture.
An external flash will solve many of these kinds of problems by virtue of their focus-assist feature.
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Good luck and don't be shy with questions.... once in a while we even have an answer
Nikono, I know what you mean about the flash spoiling the shot. What I have done is created a flash diffuser for my D60 using an old cigarette packet (google it!) and it dulls the flash "impact" quite a bit although still offering the extra light.
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Thanks a lot for your responses... I was using an AF-S DX 18-55mm VR lens (the bundle lens which comes with D60).. Thanks for all your responses.. I will try the same shot with manual focus and some external lighting and see if i can nail it..
Thanks again.. I knew i had come to the right place..