Thu 10-Nov-11 01:07 AM | edited Thu 10-Nov-11 04:05 AM by BillFuchs
Even in brightly lighted conditions I have a flashing question mark. Pressing the ? button displays "Lighting is poor; flash recommended". My lenses are all AF-S fully compatible. If I point the camera at the sun, then the flashing question mark stops. I've reset all meneus to factory defaults.
Nikon tech support wants me to send them the camera for service, but they aren't able to confirm whether this is operating as designed. Can some of you with the D5100 confirm whether you too get this message -as I have no desire to part with my camera if the next one I get has the same issue...
P ISO 100 Spd 1/250 Ap F8 EV 0.0 Focal Lenght 30mm Lense 18-55 / 3.5-5.6 AF / VR A Flash Type blank Sync mode blank flash blank WB Auto, 0, 0 Color Space sRGB Picture Ctrl Standard Sharpening 3 Noise Red HI, ISO, Norm Act D-Light Auto HDR Blank Retouch Blank
If the image this data is from is correctly exposed, I can't think of any reason for the ? to flash as neither the shutter speed or the aperture are anywhere close to their limits. I would send the camera to Nikon Service. Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!
The good, the bad, the ugly, of Nikon Service... Well, I did send in my D5100 for service with a detailed description of the issue. I sent it USPS flat rate medium box on Saturday and it was returned Friday (Good), I got an email from Nikon Service that allowed me to track the progress of the "repair" (Good), I have the same problem, no improvement (bad), they included a note that I should use the flash, duh. (ugly). Well, unless another D5100 user can confirm their camera doesn't almost always display the flashing ? mark, and subseqent message, I will have to presume this is indeed the way the camera is designed and I will just have to use the flash as instructed (sarcasm). Anyone out there with a D5100 who can confirm whether you too have the flashing question mark and message "lighting is poor, flash recommended"?
I can get my D5100 with 18-200mm lens to act the same as yours but only under certain conditions. The scene must be high dynamic range with about half/half bright and dark. If I move the camera slightly away from the bright area so that the scene has more dark then light then the flashing ? goes away even though the shutter speed and lens aperture stays the same. This is opposite to what I would expect and this is even with the shutter speed at 1/250 and higher. This even happens at exactly the same point when I'm in Aperture priority mode as well. It seems like the processor doesn't know what to do with the very high dynamic range scene so it blinks. Does this happen mostly when there is a lot of bright sky in the photo?
While this does seem like strange behavior it appears it's in the camera design.
Hi Len, I did some test shots also 18-200mm lens with high dymanic range subject (a dark green hedge and sky above) and have the problem, but aiming only at the hedge or sky resolves the issue. This test subject of course is a rather signficant contrast, and understandable. I suppose that the concept of using a flash to fill shadows is so basic that I really don't need an error message telling me the obvious which is what threw me. The HDR feature of the camera (which I reluctantly assigned to my timer button) does a pretty good job of compensating for this. Anyway, I owe you a ton of thanks for pointing out it is working as designed - now, why Nikon tech support couldn't offer the same information suggesting the only solution was to mail it in for repair is a bit disappointing. Thanks again! Bill
Hi Bill, As far as Nikon Tech support goes they would actually have to try the camera to see how it operates. Who ever you talked to probably never touched one. With your description and EXIF data it was easy to duplicate. Enjoy your D5100. I've only had mine for a couple months but find it's fun to use and quite a pleasant departure from the mainstream D300 and D700.