Bought V1 for situations when I did not want to carry my Nikon 300s. Overall I have been very pleased with the performance of the V1. Just experienced a difficult photo situation with the V1. Traveled to Ireland. Took the V1 to dinner and some pub hopping. I had a lot of difficulty with auto focus in low light situations(pub and dinner setting). V1 would not focus and could not take the photo. The quality of the photos I was able to take was poor.I did change some settings but was not really pleased with the results. Any advice on proper settings for those poor light situations with the V1. I realize pub/poor light situations are challenging for a camera. My frustration was intensified by members in our group were able to snap photos with simple point and shoot cameras and the photo quality was ok. What was I doing wrong.
Really there isn't much you can do, although the flash would help depending upon your use of flash. At least not with the the 10-30 lens. If you got the 10 f2.8 lens you'd have a little more light coming in which would raise your shutter speed some. The problem is getting enough light in. Tripod is going to be the best way overall. But if you can't use a tripod then...
I'd go with ISO 3200, 10 f2.8 lens, manual mode, and set the shutter speed to something you can handhold. Your background would likely go black but might be handholdable and satisfactory.
I agree that the 10 mm f/2.8 helps in low light situations. I've included an image taken with the V1 and 10 mm f/2.8 lens in a pub in Ireland. ISO 800, no flash. It was actually a lot darker in the pub than it appears in this image. Image processed with DxO Optics Pro 8.
The camera has control over which autofocus method to use in any given situation. Hopefully that will change in future models, but right now, you have no control over whether the camera selects the faster Phase Detect or the slower but more accurate Contrast Detect mode.
Given that, you discover over time and use in the field the "gut feeling" of when it will use one over the other. In many cases, it's clear-cut - a bright sunny day - almost guarantees PD. Dark interiors? Most likely CD. Pub situation as you described? It's hit or miss, but chances are good that it will revert to CD because of the low light levels. As with any Contrast Detect system (also likely used by your peers who were using their cameras), you need to find a nice contrasty target. Hard to do when it's dimly lit to be sure.
What I do in these situations is turn on Face Detection. FD is a supplement to either PD or CD autofocus modes. It's also very fast and very reliable, given we're several generations into this technology. Enable FD and let the camera pick either focus mode. In any case, your people photos will be properly focused. You'll want to eventually turn it off for general scenic photography for example. With me - my J1 is my "everyday carry" and thus, likely to end up being pulled out for photos of someone doing something. It's great to see those dancing little boxes popping up on people's mugs in the viewfinder - gives a nice "confidence" feedback that we know what we're focusing on.
Thanks to all for the responses and helpful tips. Plan to get a 18.5 mm for those low light situations. Plan to use the face recognition tip. Big problem, as everyone mentioned, was the auto focus fixing on a contrast in low light Irish Pub settings.(I blamed it on the Guinness!) Dave's photo did bring back pleasant memories of my trip.
I went to dinner last night with my new V1 and my not new wife. I was trying the V1 out in dimly lit situations (Christmas lights on buildings). Those results were pretty good, but somewhat noisy due to all the shadow areas. Inside the restaurant, which was pretty dimly lit, the camera seemed to focus pretty well. My only gripe was the low shutter speeds it chose (I was in A mode). When we left, I tried to take a photo of a lighted flag on a building a block away. No luck. Wouldn't focus or fire. I guess I should have kept trying to find a focus target, but I just gave it up and moved on. Frustrated. I'll keep working on it.
You may try selecting Electronic (Hi) as a shutter type - the camera will automatically adjust the ISO setting appropriate to the detected light conditions. In that way autofocus will be better able to select the focus point.
>You may try selecting Electronic (Hi) as a shutter type - the >camera will automatically adjust the ISO setting appropriate >to the detected light conditions. In that way auto focus will >be better able to select the focus point.
Vizz, Selecting Electronic (Hi) shutter you were able to shoot in poorly lighted situations? V1 was able to auto focus etc. How was the the quality?
I had the same experience as Captain Rich, "When we left, I tried to take a photo of a lighted flag on a building a block away. No luck. Wouldn't focus or fire. I guess I should have kept trying to find a focus target, but I just gave it up and moved on. Frustrated. I'll keep working on it."
I had a repeat of my previous experience last week. I was trying to take a photo of the lights on the ground and the beginning of sunrise from an airplane taking off. I could clearly see the engine nacelle, and was surprised that it didn't provide a good focus target. Gave up this time too. I have been having somewhat better luck by switching to Shutter priority, however. Don't know why.