D700 comparing to Canon 40D - same setup, totally different pic

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by boris_miljevic, Nov 12, 2010.

  1. Hello,
    This week I was at this photo session. My friend was shooting some fashion photography...
    Anyway, here's what is that i dont understand...
    He was taking photographs with 2 studio flash lights (600Ws) and a Canon 40D, and his camera setup was:
    Manual mode: S: 200, A: 3.2, ISO-200, EV0, spotmet,...
    Then i took my D700 with the same lens, flashes, setup, everything, same time, same location...
    Manual mode: S: 200, A:3.2 ISO-200, EV0, spotmetering...
    The results are so different, everything, my pictures, compared to his are underexposed by 2 or more stops...
    There was so much more light and natural looking in his display...
    Can anyone explain this to me...i know i am using totally different and FX sensor, but so much difference in same scene, location, lights, everything, everything...what would flashmeter read then :)
  2. First of all, displays show JPEG renderings of the actual RAW file and are influenced by the settings each user has on the camera. If you set your camera to VIVID for example, you will see more intense colours on your screen - that would still not affect the original RAW file.
    Also, pay attention to issues such as lens quality - a 24-70 is not the same between the two manufacturers - different blade designs, etc, etc.
    The difference between the sensor type should not matter in the final image.
    Are you shooting in full manual? Have you enabled high-speed sync on your camera?
    There are simply so many variables here it's hard to answer without seeing images from both cameras with full EXIF data...
  3. How were you triggering the flashes? I've seen some reported instances that certain triggering devices, when in use while the camera was set near the top end of the D700's sync speed (1/200th, 1/250th) did not fire the flashes at the right time, so that they were getting an open shutter when the flashes had not fired yet, or had already fired. It does sound like your underexposure is the result of a timimg problem with the flashes. Try repeating the experiment using similar settings with natural light, or with a shutter speed more like 1/60th or 1/125th and see what happens.
  4. You should've gotten the same result, not to be dumb but your lens didn't have a polarizer or ND filter on it did it? I've seen tons of comparisons using the same settings and they always look almost the same.
    If you were using the flash systems of both that's a different story. I know those moving from Canon to Nikon (TTL BL) suddently find that shooting at -3 EV flash on Canon equates to around -5 EV on Nikon. They have a very different philosophy on what's the proper amount of flash. But, if everything was manual you should've gotten the same result.
    I'm inclined to think the other poster is onto something with the flashes not firing at the right time.
  5. Check the timing of the flash, maybe it's not compatible with your D700 the way you set up. For example if the studio flash goes off before your D700 releases the shutter, it will be dark
    Also, I wonder why you say
    with the same lens​
  6. since it was on spot metering, what area was it metering? with spot metering if u are pointed at even the slightest area that is a shade darker or lighter it will change the exposure of the picture dramatically. since it is only metering on a tiny spot rather than taking a matrix metering of the whole scene or doing anykind of weighted metering. if ur friend clicked the shutter while the "spot" was on a certain part of the subject, and u clicked the shutter while your "spot" was on anything a bit brighter on the subject it would cause the underexposure u see... but that is hard to tell unless u both agree to meter on exactly the same [spot]...
    i just saw u both had manual mode on so the spot metering shouldn't matter unless the camera is doing something like auto-iso, do u know if he had auto-iso enabled on the canon and yours was off?
  7. Manual mode, flashes, so what has metering to do with under/over exposure?
  8. Hello,
    Thank you for all your responses...
    From this i can see that it could be a flash-sync problem...nothing else...
    Everything else was in FULL Manual mode.
    Is there difference between spot, centerw or matrix metering when camera is in MANUAL mode???
    How that can be when both shutter and aperture, and all other in-camera parameters are set from photographer manually?
  9. Metering mode doesn't matter but auto iso needs to be disabled as well. And flash sync on front curtain, not rear.
  10. Boris
    You are right. As long as you set all of the parameters yourself it does not matter what metering mode you are in.
  11. Thanks Michael.
    Why are you all stuck to ISO AUTO??? :)
    Who is using ISO-auto anyway...
  12. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    As long as you set all of the parameters yourself it does not matter what metering mode you are in.​
    If you completely ignore the meter and just set all the controls (aperture, shutter speed, ISO) yourself, metering mode certainly does not matter.
    However, if you set the controls yourself based on the camera meter reading, in that case metering mode matters.
  13. In full manual mode, metering mode doesn't matter - you just set shutter speed, aperture and ISO and ignore the meter reading. Not sure if Auto-ISO could interfere if it was on - but it's easy to check in the EXIF data - if Auto-ISO was on, then the EXIF would read something higher than ISO 200. My best guess, either an issue with syncing the flashes with the camera (they firing too early or not at all) or the camera was set to rear-curtain sync (which would be reported in the EXIF as well). If the sync speed of the camera was too fast for the flashes - then you'd likely see partially exposed images, not totally underexposed ones.
  14. In the original post you can see that he set the D700 to match the settings from the 40D.
    By doing that it should have taken out any variables caused by metering. 1/200 is inside the sync speed using speedlights. But out of sync would show a dark bar not a totally underexposed image. It sounds to me like something else was going on.
    It would be helpful to see a sample from both cameras and be able to compare the EXIF data from each.
  15. I suddenly remembered: I have had the same problem with my D700 and D2h with a 105 VR. I couldn't find any reason for the difference in exposure. On a tripod: D700 + 105 VR + 2 studio flasjes, trial and error to find the exposure, replace the D700 with a D2h with the same settings as the D700: exposure completely off. Tried everything to find a explanation, but nada. The only thing I can figure out is: 200 iso isn't always 200 iso.
    According to DxO mark there is about 1/2 a stop difference between the camera's, but as far I can remember the difference was much more and in the different direction. Learned to live with it and only use the D700 for this, because a DX-crop is even more than a D2h.
  16. If both cameras are set to manual mode the same ISO, same shutter speed and same apeture and they were shooting with studio lights then the exposures should be pretty much the same the same. If there are huge differences between the two cameras then something is really very wrong. Could be that the D700 was not ever triggering the studio flashes. How were the studio lights being triggered by a cable or using the built in flash.
  17. Hi again...
    Just want to say that i have no problems with my own flashes and D700...everything works fine...i have exact same flash heads as my Canon friend...but i need to set the flashes completely different to get great pictures.
    I am just confused by all this stuff, and that is the reason why i am trying to understand this big difference in results between D700 and 40D.
    Later I asked him to lower down ISO to 125 on Canon, and i was on ISO-400 on D700...underexposed again on D700 comparing with 40D...with same shutter and aperture settings on both.
    So i need maybe ISO-1000 to match exact exposure with those lights, positions,...
    I was trying to trigger flashes with pop-up flash from D700 in Commander mode and with cable trigger also...it is almost the same.
  18. I am sure it's the synchonization with the flash, but since you can't believe that yet, do the simple test as followed:
    Set the two cameras with smae shooting parameters and take a shot of that same subject WITHOUT FLASH AT ALL.
    If the cameras give the same exposure ---> the problem is with the flash
    If the cameras still give different exposures ----> It has nothing to do with the flash
    You should have done this test long time ago
  19. Yes, now i am sure that it has to do something with flash sync...thank you all. You are very kind.
  20. I was trying to trigger flashes with pop-up flash from D700 in Commander mode​
    Commander mode can be used only with CLS compatible flashes. It may be that your studio flashes are being triggered by the pre-flash.
    If you want to use your built-in flash, put it in manual mode at the lowest power setting
  21. Do studio flashes even work with comander mode. I though that was something for Nikon dedicated speedlights. If you try to trigger studio flashes with a built in flash you likely need to put the built in flash into manual mode otherwise the built in flash is in TTL mode and the pre flashes trigger the studio lights before the shutter opens. I usually put the built in flash of my D80 to manual mode and set it to 1/64th power so the built in flash has very little effect on the exposure but it still triggers the optical slaves. One more question how did you meter the studio flashes and how did you friend trigger them.
  22. There was so much more light and natural looking in his display​
    Did you also make sure that the amount of backlight for the lcd display was the same or comparable ?
    I do not see anything about comparing your results on a PC or print, and both camera's alow you to change the back lighting of the camera's lcd's ......
  23. unless you are using the identical lens on both cameras, the results will be different because not every lens is identical in terms of the amount of light that passes through it at any given aperture (zoom lenses, with more elements, will be dimmer than a prime lens, for example).
  24. There is a short pulse of (data) light that are optically triggering the flashes prematurely in commander mode. Just set the
    flash mode to manual at 1/8th power or less and you should be able to make the slaves go off and get a proper exposure.
    Also, the meter does work in manual mode. This will only help you for ambient lighting and not exposures with off camera
    strobes. If you want to nail that, you will need a flash meter. Hopefully that is clear. An instance where you might want to
    use manual spot mode might be for concert or theatre lighting. I typically will spot meter the face of the subject and adjust
    the shutter till the meter in the view finder shows a correct exposure to get ballpark shots quickly. Always check the
    histogram if time allows.

    Let us know how the next test goes!

    -Scott Martinez
  25. Its almost certainly operator error. The D700 is capable of matching the 5D2 in resolution and sharpness.
    You cant compare easily. Nikon and Canon differ in their in camera processing. You need to use the same lens and examine the RAW files.
    Mind you, the 40D was a good camera in its day.

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