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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Astronomy & Celestial 
Thread started 29 Jun 2016 (Wednesday) 00:50
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Shooting lightning.

 
Geonerd
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Jul 10, 2016 13:39 |  #16

My recipe is:

Tripod.
Remote release switch, with locking function.
ASA to lowest value, unless you have a (slow) lens that is unacceptably soft at wider apertures.
Find a pretty scene. Don't just aim the camera at the sky, or shoot from a location with a cluttered skyline.
Find some way to reliably focus at infinity. This can be the biggest challenge for those shooting AF glass.
Manual mode.
f/ 6.7 to start.
Adjust shutter speed to properly expose clouds, sky, landscape, etc. (All the non-lightning stuff)
Lock switch and machine-gun until you catch a bolt.
Chimp image and adjust aperture if lightning is either too wimpy or blown out.
Adjust shutter as needed to compensate for fading light.

Triggers are of rather limited value. Use only if you NEED to catch lightning by day; otherwise, don't waste your money. The main problem is the latency they add, combined with the fact that most of the bright branching lightning usually occurs during the first main stroke (called a 'return stroke'). By the time the shutter is open, the main show is usually over. Most subsequent return strokes are single-channel 'pencils' in the sky and are not particularly interesting IMO.




  
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Dean5
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Jul 10, 2016 18:14 as a reply to  @ post 18061307 |  #17

This was an unusual night of lightning. Each photograph is one lightning strike although it appears that it was multiple strikes. The lightning was very close thus the ISO of 100 and ƒ9.
I usually try to do 10-20 second exposures. If the lightning is far away or not real bright I will up the ISO and open the aperture.

If I get a good strike I will close the shutter and move on to the next frame.


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Cormac
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Jul 23, 2016 22:23 |  #18

Someone mentioned stacking shots? Here is 3 shots stacked, I just got done shooting an hour ago. It's funny, I actually ended up with several usable shots this time. And only took 250 shots. A couple weeks ago I took over 500 shots and got 1 image. You win some, you lose some! These are 20 sec @ f/13, ISO 100 and 70mm focal length FYI.

I prefer using a longer lens. When I do get a strike it's much more crisp and fills the frame more. Though using a wider lens your chances of catching a strike go up much more. I also bumped the exposure in lightroom by half a stop. Along with my regular processing. The foreground was way to dark otherwise. Post processing plays a role in how your photos turn out too. But if the initial image is crap, pp won't save it. Granted this is nothing compared to other examples in this thread. I'm also rather new to shooting lightning. And I'm happy with this shot!

IMAGE: https://c4.staticflickr.com/9/8885/28504238675_d5b127e0dc_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/KqPF​5X  (external link) Multiple Strikes (external link) by Matt Johnson (external link), on Flickr

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Jul 24, 2016 03:51 |  #19

FWIW, don't try this $80 trigger
I bought it June 8, 2014, and did return it to Amazon for refund (minus re-stocking fee).
Simply not reliable enough for lightning.
https://www.amazon.com …age_o01_s00?ie=​UTF8&psc=1 (external link)

IMAGE: http://images10.newegg.com/ProductImage/A04D_130132704175922661m7u0OlPI07.jpg

I was looking at the more expensive ones, but as a photo hobbyist I could not justify spending $300+.

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saea501
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Jul 26, 2016 14:50 |  #20

I do the 20-30 second exposure method. If the lightning is very active you'll get some nice captures. These started out as just a pretty sunset. Then the wind picked up and we started getting some action.

IMAGE: https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8683/28540050945_2ed6a6179d_b_d.jpg

IMAGE: https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8275/28256171590_71be403a12_b_d.jpg

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Jul 26, 2016 21:12 |  #21

saea501 wrote in post #18078296 (external link)
I do the 20-30 second exposure method. If the lightning is very active you'll get some nice captures. These started out as just a pretty sunset. Then the wind picked up and we started getting some action.

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE


very cool
great captures :-)


Dave


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Jul 27, 2016 06:18 |  #22

Davenn wrote in post #18078608 (external link)
very cool
great captures :-)

Dave

Wow, that first one is just amazing! Great shots!


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saea501
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Jul 27, 2016 16:07 |  #23

Davenn wrote in post #18078608 (external link)
very cool great captures :-)Dave

pdxbenedetti wrote in post #18078851 (external link)
Wow, that first one is just amazing! Great shots!

Thanks, guys.


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Post edited over 4 years ago by kukulkan. (2 edits in all)
     
Jul 28, 2016 00:48 |  #24

This one came to close and came out a little overblown


2048
x
1365
TOO LARGE!
EMBED PREVENTED, IMAGE TOO LARGE:
https://c7.staticflick​r.com …72256974_22115b​a04f_b.jpg
Click here to see our image rules.
5032c (1 of 1) (external link) by alan marquez (external link), on Flickr



  
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Davenn
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Post edited over 4 years ago by Davenn.
     
Jul 28, 2016 19:02 |  #25

kukulkan wrote in post #18079789 (external link)
This one came to close and came out a little overblown

2048
x
1365
TOO LARGE!
EMBED PREVENTED, IMAGE TOO LARGE:
https://c7.staticflick​r.com …72256974_22115b​a04f_b.jpg
Click here to see our image rules.
5032c (1 of 1) (external link) by alan marquez (external link), on Flickr


your upload didn't work as it was too big for the forum ... watch your file size (# of kB) and in particular, image size
2048 x 1365 is way too big ... stay around the 1000 x 700 size :-)
fortunately the link to it was good

remember for next time, if the lightning is relatively close, keep your f-stop much higher f11 or so ;-)a
you wont get too many blown out images


Dave


A picture is worth 1000 words ;)
Canon 5D3, 6D, 700D, a bunch of lenses and other bits, ohhh and some Pentax stuff ;)

  
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kukulkan
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Jul 28, 2016 19:35 |  #26

Thanks I got it fixed and thanks for the feedback!!

2048
x
1375
TOO LARGE!
EMBED PREVENTED, IMAGE TOO LARGE:
https://c7.staticflick​r.com …07799158_a0d5af​e10f_b.jpg
Click here to see our image rules.
4973d (1 of 1) (external link) by alan marquez (external link), on Flickr



  
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Jul 28, 2016 19:36 |  #27

Resize the image and it will be visible in the thread.


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Post edited over 4 years ago by kezug.
     
Jul 30, 2016 11:05 |  #28

I love trying/catching lightning. It was dark so I was using the Bulb method with a manual shutter...just holding the shutter open for no longer than 20 seconds or until a good amount of lightning was visible.
These are not composites.
I need to work on my focus though.


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Aug 02, 2016 19:34 |  #29

mtbdudex wrote in post #18075897 (external link)
FWIW, don't try this $80 trigger
I bought it June 8, 2014, and did return it to Amazon for refund (minus re-stocking fee).
Simply not reliable enough for lightning.
https://www.amazon.com …age_o01_s00?ie=​UTF8&psc=1 (external link)

QUOTED IMAGE

I was looking at the more expensive ones, but as a photo hobbyist I could not justify spending $300+.

http://www.bhphotovide​o.com …ke_Finder_Elite​_with.html (external link)


QUOTED IMAGE


Hi Mike

( for daytime use) Have had one of the top ones a while, mediocre performance, really only works for close bright strikes

Wasn't aware of that second one you posted, not sure whether to risk getting one unless some one can give good reviews
it would cost AU$395 with today's exchange rate + postage, probably around another AU$25 - 30 ouch

If I lived in the USA, wouldn't hesitate to spend US$300, but to import with a bad exchange rate + postage is a bit much :-(


cheers
Dave


A picture is worth 1000 words ;)
Canon 5D3, 6D, 700D, a bunch of lenses and other bits, ohhh and some Pentax stuff ;)

  
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Shooting lightning.
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