Auto Mode is not always your friend….

Here are a two shots of the moon.

The first shot is taken with the Nikon D90 in Auto No Flash mode.

Half Moon Auto
Camera:      Nikon D90
Exposure:     0.167 sec (1/6)
Aperture:     f/5.6
Focal Length:     300 mm
ISO Speed:     800
Exposure Bias:     0 EV
Exposure Program:     Auto:No Flash

As you can see this shot is to put it blunty crap.  Crap for a few reasons… firstly it is over blown and secondly it is blury as the shot is hand held on a non VR lens.  But this is what Automode does….

This shot however is not so crap 🙂  It is still a hand held shot on the Nikkor 70-300mm F4.0-5.6G lens… which the first shot was taken with, taken only a a few seconds beforehand.

Half Moon
Camera:      Nikon D90
Exposure:     0.004 sec (1/250)
Aperture:     f/10.0
Focal Length:     300 mm
ISO Speed:     500
Exposure Program:     Manual

Here you can see the moon is nice and crisp, the craters are visible and even at 11pm I can hand hold the shot, because the object I was photographing was bright enough.

So remember get your camera off Automode every now and then and you might just get the shot you are looking for, not the one the camera thinks you are after.

Now of course the master shot to get the moon this big is still a massive crop… from 4288x2848px to 1576x1278px but still the lens has a decent reach 🙂

Now to get my hands on 500mm lens with a teleconverter 🙂

One Response to “Auto Mode is not always your friend….”

  1. For a shot like this you’ll get a better result from auto if you choose a spot metering mode. Not sure what modes the D90 has, but the default mode is most likely some kind of weighted average and it’s trying for something between the dark sky and the bright moon.

    On the other hand, manual exposure is best for shooting the moon 🙂

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