Which shutter speed

Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 9:28 am

Hi, I am relatively now to this photographing lark and as I only go to maybe 1 or 2 shows a year, learning is rather slow. I have some okish (for my use anyway ), photos of things like the B17 and Lanc etc, but the propellers are stationary. What is an ideal shutter speed to prevent this. I only have an Eos d550 with a 75 - 300 lens. TIA
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby jaguar54 on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 9:46 am

Hi Darren,

When ever I take shots of aircraft with either propellers or rotors I normally put my settings to TV and shoot no higher than 360.
jaguar54

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 10:10 am

Thanks jaguar. I'm off to Yeovilton this year, so I'll give it a go..
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Maisie on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 10:15 am

If you can get to a local airfield, do so before the show and have a practise and have a go at various shutter speeds. Put it into 'TV' as said and play between 1/200th up to 1/400th and see what you like.

At least that way you won't be going into the deep end and possibly ruin the show photos.
6D | 7D | 60D
11-16 f/2.8 | 24-105 IS L | 70-300 IS USM | 50 f/1.4 | 100 f/2.8 | 400 f/5.6
Maisie

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 11:14 am

Sounds like good advice to me, thank you very much.
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Skyflash on Fri 02 Jun 2017, 11:34 am

Around 1/250 should be slow enough to give you nice prop-blur on most helicopters and propeller-powered aeroplanes.

For some other rotary craft, most notably anything from the Chinook and Osprey class, you need to go significantly slower to get good blur as the props themselves turn so slowly. I've tended to shoot at around 1/100 or lower for these, for that reason.

Like others have said, just muck about and experiment with different settings. Learning what works and what doesn't is all part of the fun of this game!

HTH. :smile:
Posting comments on an aviation-related chatroom, are ya? Looks like it an' all...
User avatar
Skyflash

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby wallace on Tue 06 Jun 2017, 11:26 am

It depends....it depends on a lot of things.

As someone said, get out and practice on the light aircraft and see what works for you. Light changes, circumstances change and even prop rotation speeds change so just get some practice in.
User avatar
wallace

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Go4Long on Tue 06 Jun 2017, 1:02 pm

I'll shoot the big transport and small aircraft props down in the 1/125-1/200th range. "High performance" props like big HP lycomings and what not I'll go up to about 1/300th depending on the day.

Helicopters (and by relation, osprey) are another animal entirely. I'll usually shoot them around 1/30th or slower and just throw em all away :tongue:
User avatar
Go4Long


Re: Which shutter speed

Postby spellow3010 on Thu 22 Jun 2017, 10:27 am

Maisie wrote:If you can get to a local airfield, do so before the show and have a practise and have a go at various shutter speeds. Put it into 'TV' as said and play between 1/200th up to 1/400th and see what you like.

At least that way you won't be going into the deep end and possibly ruin the show photos.


The soundest of sound advice... never ever leave it until the day of the race to experiment... If you live near a gliding field, go there if they have a towing tug. Better than nothing.

Depending on your panning skill with that 75-300 stock lens (assume it's a basic, non-IS lens that came with the camera?), 200 to 250 speed on TV will be a big improvement. The more versed you get in panning, you'll be able to go much lower. I used a 550D as my back up and got some nice shots with it - mostly taxi shots at Fairford arrivals with an 18-250mm lens or to shoot wider aircraft formations etc.

Practice, practice, practice...
Good luck with it...
User avatar
spellow3010

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby MC hammer on Thu 22 Jun 2017, 9:57 pm

Remember it is easier to get prop blur on an aircraft taxiing at 5mph than it is of one flying, so you will need to adjust the shutter speed accordingly, until you get good enough to prop blur the flyers.
Also remember to put your speed back up if the next photo will be a jet.
Personally I'm not too worried by the amount of prop blur, having a sharp image is what matters, therefore I tend not to go as slow as others are suggesting, especially if the aircraft is rare. For you though, you may not mind a low keep rate providing you get that one shot where it all comes together, prop blur and sharp aircraft. As others have said, have a go and see what it is you particularly like about photography.
MC hammer

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby GeorgeP on Fri 23 Jun 2017, 11:10 am

G'day Darren, some excellent advice has already been given. Aircraft taxiing may require a slower shutter speed to give 'acceptable' prop blur because they'll be typically at low power settings (about 1000 rpm, or less, for the aircraft that I fly). Aircraft at take-off power on the ground and soon after rotation may allow you to shoot at up to 1/400th, possibly faster, because the props will be spinning at about 2,500 rpm. As others have suggested, get out there and practice before the big event.

I usually shoot in manual exposure mode to avoid the background fooling the camera's metering system and AI servo focusing (Canon terminology). Good luck, hope this helps. :smile:
Cheers,

George

Melbourne, Australia.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/30699732@N05/albums
User avatar
GeorgeP

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Maccyd on Tue 27 Jun 2017, 8:07 pm

Go4Long wrote:I'll shoot the big transport and small aircraft props down in the 1/125-1/200th range. "High performance" props like big HP lycomings and what not I'll go up to about 1/300th depending on the day.

Helicopters (and by relation, osprey) are another animal entirely. [b]I'll usually shoot them around 1/30th or slower and just throw em all away[/b] :tongue:

Priceless.
User avatar
Maccyd

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Go4Long on Wed 28 Jun 2017, 4:07 am

It's sad but true. I'll shoot a hundred shots of a taxiing osprey and just throw em all out at the end of the day.
User avatar
Go4Long

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 8:50 am

Many thanks for all your advice guys, I'll give it a go much appreciated.
Regards Darren
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 8:57 am

spellow3010 wrote:
Maisie wrote:If you can get to a local airfield, do so before the show and have a practise and have a go at various shutter speeds. Put it into 'TV' as said and play between 1/200th up to 1/400th and see what you like.

At least that way you won't be going into the deep end and possibly ruin the show photos.


The soundest of sound advice... never ever leave it until the day of the race to experiment... If you live near a gliding field, go there if they have a towing tug. Better than nothing.

Depending on your panning skill with that 75-300 stock lens (assume it's a basic, non-IS lens that came with the camera?), 200 to 250 speed on TV will be a big improvement. The more versed you get in panning, you'll be able to go much lower. I used a 550D as my back up and got some nice shots with it - mostly taxi shots at Fairford arrivals with an 18-250mm lens or to shoot wider aircraft formations etc.

Practice, practice, practice...
Good luck with it...


Hi, its an IS lens if that makes any difference. I understand that I won't get anything too great unless I upgrade to an L series lens and a full frame body , but I don't think I can justify the expense for 1 or 2 days a year.
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby LN Strike Eagle on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 9:34 am

You don't need either of those things to produce good images. Is it definitely a 75-300, or a 70-300?
"You really are an oafish philistine at times!"
User avatar
LN Strike Eagle
Big Cheese Mk.II

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby spellow3010 on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 1:14 pm

LN Strike Eagle wrote:You don't need either of those things to produce good images. Is it definitely a 75-300, or a 70-300?


Darren - what this guy said. I've gone back to a crop sensor (7D Mk2) for aircraft in the air shots at shows because I lose 'reach' with my 6D full frame. Aircraft fly so far away (Duxford especially) now that even with a 100-400 Canon Mk 2 (grey), the shots need so much cropping that to me they are a bit of a waste of space. A final cropped and processed image of less than one megabyte in 2017 is utter garbage. Even shooting at Cosford (MAA rules of closeness) with my full frame and using a Sigma 150-500 lens was too far away in most cases.

So, I'm using the 7D Mk 2 at Legends with my Canon 100-400 Mk2 (maybe a few with a 1.4 extender) to see if there is an improvement in my 'keep rate' at that location. I'm seriously considering not bothering to shoot displays going forward in the current situation. After a couple of successful shoots elsewhere on 'full manual,' this will be my first event shooting fully manual at a major flying event. Despite the practice, practice mantra, it still feels like an awful risk to take at a major show. I'll never do it if I don't try once :smile:
User avatar
spellow3010

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Darren50 on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 7:01 am

LN Strike Eagle wrote:You don't need either of those things to produce good images. Is it definitely a 75-300, or a 70-300?


My mistake, its a 70- 300mm
Darren50

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Wrexham Mackem on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 7:59 am

spellow3010 wrote:After a couple of successful shoots elsewhere on 'full manual,' this will be my first event shooting fully manual at a major flying event. Despite the practice, practice mantra, it still feels like an awful risk to take at a major show. I'll never do it if I don't try once :smile:


Manual exposure? why on earth would you bother? The evaluative metering on a 7DII is excellent, and especially in a fast changing environment like sweeping around the sky at an airshow the camera will make a far better job of it than you can yourself. If you've got back light and you're getting a lot of silhouetting then apply a little exposure compensation.. leave yourself free to concentrate on following and framing the action.

Agree with the comments above btw, a full frame sensor isn't a necessity for action photography.
its time to kick the tyres and light the fires
User avatar
Wrexham Mackem

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby jalfrezi on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 8:20 am

I usually shoot anywhere between 1/60 to 1/320 depending on the situation, sometimes up to 1/400 if it's particularly windy. You also need to factor in the focal length you're shooting at, a longer focal length will usually mean a faster shutter speed is required unless you want to end up binning most of your shots!

spellow3010 wrote:
So, I'm using the 7D Mk 2 at Legends with my Canon 100-400 Mk2 (maybe a few with a 1.4 extender) to see if there is an improvement in my 'keep rate' at that location. I'm seriously considering not bothering to shoot displays going forward in the current situation. After a couple of successful shoots elsewhere on 'full manual,' this will be my first event shooting fully manual at a major flying event. Despite the practice, practice mantra, it still feels like an awful risk to take at a major show. I'll never do it if I don't try once :smile:


That's the combo I use with the 1.4 extender, works fine for me though unfortunately you only have centre point AF, which is a shame.
User avatar
jalfrezi

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby LN Strike Eagle on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 8:59 am

Darren50 wrote:
LN Strike Eagle wrote:You don't need either of those things to produce good images. Is it definitely a 75-300, or a 70-300?


My mistake, its a 70- 300mm

Canon 70-300 IS?
"You really are an oafish philistine at times!"
User avatar
LN Strike Eagle
Big Cheese Mk.II

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby spellow3010 on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 11:19 am

Wrexham Mackem wrote:
spellow3010 wrote:After a couple of successful shoots elsewhere on 'full manual,' this will be my first event shooting fully manual at a major flying event. Despite the practice, practice mantra, it still feels like an awful risk to take at a major show. I'll never do it if I don't try once :smile:


Manual exposure? why on earth would you bother? The evaluative metering on a 7DII is excellent, and especially in a fast changing environment like sweeping around the sky at an airshow the camera will make a far better job of it than you can yourself. If you've got back light and you're getting a lot of silhouetting then apply a little exposure compensation.. leave yourself free to concentrate on following and framing the action.

Agree with the comments above btw, a full frame sensor isn't a necessity for action photography.


Now my confidence is shot to pieces... :oops:

:smile: I'll try a bit of both... I can't stomach a week of RIAT shots all going in the bin so will probably revert 'to type' next week!! :smile:
User avatar
spellow3010

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby Wrexham Mackem on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 12:30 pm

Sorry Spellow, didn't mean to do that, far from it.

But RIAT really, with the sun where it is, is just no problem 90-odd percent of the time. I just use AV at f8 for jets keeping the shutter speed up around 1/1000 or higher and TV at 1/320 and lower for props/helos, and tweak the ISO to keep the exposures viable. The camera does the rest - 7DII like yours - and I just fire away. It honestly rarely lets me down and I don't have the luxury of the new and vastly improved mark II 100 - 400.

If you're losing loads of shots, why? is it camera shake or aim, focus or exposure?

I hope there's there's something we can collectively do to help/advise.

But using manual exposure mode wouldn't be one of them :smile:
its time to kick the tyres and light the fires
User avatar
Wrexham Mackem

Re: Which shutter speed

Postby spellow3010 on Tue 04 Jul 2017, 2:41 pm

Wrexham Mackem wrote:Sorry Spellow, didn't mean to do that, far from it.

But RIAT really, with the sun where it is, is just no problem 90-odd percent of the time. I just use AV at f8 for jets keeping the shutter speed up around 1/1000 or higher and TV at 1/320 and lower for props/helos, and tweak the ISO to keep the exposures viable. The camera does the rest - 7DII like yours - and I just fire away. It honestly rarely lets me down and I don't have the luxury of the new and vastly improved mark II 100 - 400.

If you're losing loads of shots, why? is it camera shake or aim, focus or exposure?

I hope there's there's something we can collectively do to help/advise.

But using manual exposure mode wouldn't be one of them :smile:


He-he, no need to apologise... you just made me ask questions of myself. All good.

Historically, I'm a TV (shutter priority) mode delinquent... up to about 1/800 for fast jets and about 1/250 or 1/300 for props. Shooting RAW... I think my issue is panning - my Canon 100-400Mk2 or Sigma 150-500 lenses are quite heavy and whilst I'm not a wimp, I can hold them all day... but panning accurately to get a consistent burst of 'sweet focus' is my challenge. The 7D shoots a much faster burst than my 6D or old 600D crop. Understanding where to target my 'focus points' is a challenge with my panning too. The dilemma of leaving it to auto-focus generally in the middle, or select a focus point to trap an aircraft nose sharply to the left or right of the frame. For some night photography I have selected specific focus points before, but out of habit I tend to let the auto-focus select where to focus and hope that I can pan the aircraft and keep it generally in the middle of my viewfinder as it passes.

Arrivals and Practice at Fairford have been my biggest wins - got a lovely topside of the F-22 (crappy old 600D crop) doing it's practice last year. I also kind of nailed the Ramex Delta 'fluff break' shot that happened during their practice last year. Was quite proud of that with the kit I had. It was horrible light... that practice and that of the RAF Typhoon in that gloom will live long in my memory. But with all that, I have my misses too. 600D with the Sigma did leave me with some soft shots beyond 350mm. I'm hoping that with practice of my technique and the 7D upgrade and better lens, that I will improve my hit rate.

Always looking to improve, and I get a lot of insight and intrigue in reading how other people go about the business of photographing aircraft in the sky. Arrivals is quite easy, the planes are a lot slower and bigger in the viewfinder. Even I seldom mess those up in a burst.
User avatar
spellow3010

Next

Return to Photography Hints, Tips & Questions

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests