I am an absolute novice, but have been quite keen for some time to try a DSLR. After months and months of research i decided to take the plunge and invest in a D300 with a 18-200 nikkor Dx lens.
My passion is landscapes and asian architecture, which i have been blessed with here in Japan. To cut a long story short I set out with my D300 switch to Programmed Auto, Iso auto with base set at 200, Active D lighting set to normal. The photo's i came away with where really poor. The camera seemed to either under expose, over expose, or both at the same time. There also is a lack of detail.
Basically I am not sure if i have just a very poorly set up camera due to my lack of knowledge, or have bought a dud which needs to be taken back for repairs.
Can someone help? at my wits end
#1. "RE: D300 Poor Images" | In response to Reply # 0Voodoo Registered since 29th Apr 2006Sun 24-Feb-08 01:05 PM
please post an image showing the problem so others can try to help troubleshoot...dont forget to include exif data and such
I leave d lighting off most times because I feel it lowers the image quality/resolution/detail. same with noise reduction. I rather deal with it in post processing.
Thanks for sharing,
#2. "RE: D300 Poor Images" | In response to Reply # 0MotoMannequin Registered since 11th Jan 2006Sun 24-Feb-08 02:23 PM
The exposure problems you're describing sound like you're probably using spot metering, where the camera measures light only from a single spot, covered by the the active autofocus bracket, to determine exposure. If that spot happens to fall on a dark or bright area, it can throw the whole exposure out of whack.
Spot metering is a useful tool but it requires a lot of thought in its use. You probably want to stick with matrix metering until you're more familiar with the camera and how to set up exposure.
Posting a picture with exif data intact will help us help you.
Larry - a Bay Area Nikonian
My Nikonians gallery
#4. "RE: D300 Poor Images" | In response to Reply # 0
"under expose, over expose, or both at the same time"
You can't underexpose and overexpose at the same time. You are probably dealing with a scene where the contrast is higher than the sensor can handle, e.g. a scene with a bright sky and deep shadows.
#5. "RE: D300 Poor Images" | In response to Reply # 0
I agree, you should post some examples (or a link), along with some shot details such as aperture used, shutter speed, WB, etc. This will enable members of Nikonians to constructively offer up suggestions based on what we are seeing.
For novices, the D300 can be intimidating, especially if you don't understand the unique interplay between aperture/DOF, shutter, focal length, WB, ISO, focus target/method used, dynamic range, etc. That's not to say that you don't understand this stuff, but to point out that there are so many factors that can determine whether a photo is in focus and properly exposed. And these technical aspects do not even consider other aspects such as composition.
The smallest things can make a difference. Take for example your 18-200 VR lens. If you forget to turn off the VR when using a tripod, the shots could be negatively affected. Also if hand-holding using this lens (with the VR on), you need to press down the shutter release button for a second or so to allow the VR to kick in and the optics time to stabilize.
At this juncture, the quality of the image is probably more your technique, and less the camera. Cameras at this level are infinitely less forgiving than P&S or similar cameras. But don't give up just yet. Keep on reading up about photography and the D300, and practice, practice, practice. You'll be amazed at how much better your pictures will look after a few months of due diligence.