I'm trying to figure out where to set aperture when using flash.I know shutter sould be 1/250 or below,but what about aperture? Bear with me,I'm a spoiled N60 owner too!This is my first manual Nikon.I went for the gusto so I won't outgrow it soon.It does nice stuff the N60 can't too. BTW,the flash is a Vivitar 730AFNi.I know,I know:shoulda bought a "real" speedlight! Any help or advice would be great. Regards, Mike S
Since I read you are getting TTL function from that set up this is sort of a moot point. Fun to debate but of little consequence unless you choose to shut off the TTL. If you were running an Auto style flash it would have a chart on it indicating the proper settings for its operation, actually both manual and auto flashes would have said chart.
Aperture matters. If you are shooting in a crowd, such as at a party or event, use a wide aperture. This allows the fastest flash recycle time, which saves battery power (by 2x or 3x, not just a few extras) plus you don't miss any good shots while waiting for the ready light. If you are deliberately trying to supress the background, such as for an informal portrait in the above situation, use a small aperture. In the above shots the shutterspeed is not important. Just set it to 1/250 if you want. But if you want a fill flash effect, you need to set your aperture first, then meter and adjust the ambient light with the shutterspeed. If you are shooting action, you will do just the opposite--set the shutterspeed high first. Obviously (or not so obviously) you should not use fast film outdoors in bright daylight if you intend to use flash, or you will run out of apertures at 1/250. -scott
"I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it." Pablo Picasso
You could let your FM3A handle things with TTL, but of course, setting the aperture manually gives you a wider choice of effect. The aperture basically limits the range of your flash, so a small aperture "cuts off" the background, i.e. the flash only reaches the nearer parts of your composition, the background will be dark. Wide apertures include more of the ambient light which will give a more balanced lighting, the flash needs less power (i.e. less flash duration), and therefore recycles faster. With the TTL function, you´ll basically get a "correctly" (however you define that) picture (if your subject is in the flashllight´s range and so on), even when you bounce your flash.
If your flash exposures come out black as the night or the people´s faces turn a whiter shade of pale, or...
Sharpness is a bourgeois concept. Henri Cartier-Bresson