Is there a setting I need to adjust to use the flash as a fill flash for outdoor pics? When I have some shadows on a face, I would like to use the flash to even them out, when I turn it on I get a super overexposed shot. What am I doing wrong?
The built-in flash does not have a TTL-BL mode. You can try using the Flash compensation to boost the flash level, but the built-in probably will not have enough power. One of the Nikon SB-900/800/600 Speedlights will have more power and provide a TTL-BL mode, but with a strongly backlit image, you may still not have enough power. You might want to look at the Speedlights forum and Russ MacDonald's Nikon CLS Practical Guide.
greenwing Yorkshire, UK Nikonian since 18th May 2006
Mon 02-Nov-09 09:21 AM
#2. "RE: Fill Flash?" In response to Reply # 0 Mon 02-Nov-09 09:22 AM by greenwing
If you aren't using Spot Metering, then the built-in flash will be in TTL-BL mode, which is effectively fill-flash. The camera attempts to balance the flash & ambient light.
I think the problem may lie with your shutter speed. The camera cannot synchronise the flash at a shutter speed faster than 1/200. If without flash your shutter speed is 1/800, then if nothing else changes the image will be 2 stops over exposed, at least, because the camera will reduce the shutter speed to 1/200 or slower. It may even be worse, as the default flash shutter speed is 1/60, almost 2 more stops slower than 1/200.
Try setting your Mode dial to "S" for Shutter Priority. You can choose to view your choices through the eyepiece or on the monitor, as you turn the Command Dial in upper-right backside. You can synchronize flash with daylight exposure at 1/200, or slower. All other settings will remain automatic. At ISO 200, a normal exposure should be 1/200 at f/16. Now manipulate your flash output to 1/2 of full exposure to achieve 2:1 lighting ratio, or 1/3rd to achieve 3:1 ratio.
An automatic TTL flash (such as an SB-600) allows choices of fill lighting ratio.