I just dont understand what AE lock does on the D90! Please help.. at DVinfo.net

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Old February 7th, 2009, 07:39 AM   #1
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I just dont understand what AE lock does on the D90! Please help..

Ive read around, and its pretty clear the d90 has no manual control in video mode.

SO what is this AE lock business??

Lets say I compose a scene, and all looks good. If I now lock the AE and move the cam to say a brighter area, does the image change?? If not, isnt this a form of manual control?

Lastly, I dont understand the differences between what the cam adjusts and when ie Appature, iso, and gain.

If i compse a scene and the app is say f4 (or what ever), when I move the cam to say a darker area, what does the cam do first? Does it open the App? or does it increase the iso, or does it increase the gain??

Hope you can help guys, Im a begginner (as you can tell lol), and am very interested in this cam.

Thanks
James
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Old February 7th, 2009, 12:24 PM   #2
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You'll find pretty well everything you need to know in the post at this link.

Understanding and Optimizing the Nikon D90 D-Movie Mode Image - DVXuser.com -- The online community for filmmaking

When you get the hang of it, put your D90 on a tripod, point it at some interesting objects, turn on a light or two and make test shots changing just one thing at a time. You'll get a good idea of how it works for you.

-a-
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Old February 8th, 2009, 09:09 AM   #3
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Many thanks for the link! Heres my understanding, and im hoping you can correct me where I am wrong:

If I use a fully manual lens this will give me manual control of focus, and a good old fashion appature ring which I can stop up or down to my hearts content. Ok?

Now, If I have an area of known brightness, I can point the cam at this area and by using the ae-lock, I can get the cam to defult to say 300iso at 1/30th. The trick seems to be recreating the correct brightness level in order for the cam set at these numbers. Ok?

So.... If I have locked my iso/shutter. They will not change, regardless of my appature setting on the lens??

If the above is correct, wouldnt this be all the control needed? Im thinking in terms of someone learning the art of film making/cinemtography. Back in 'the day' film students would have only had access to say a super 16mm (like a Krasnogorsk) or super8. These type of cams dont have alot of options.

You would have got a basic cam, chose your film stock (ie a fixed iso), set your film speed (24fps which the d90 uses for 1080p) and them you would have had an apature ring.

Isnt this what this cam offers, providing you can create the ideal light source for creating iso/shutter??

Thanks
James
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Old February 8th, 2009, 02:53 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by James Millward View Post
If the above is correct, wouldnt this be all the control needed? Im thinking in terms of someone learning the art of film making/cinemtography. Back in 'the day' film students would have only had access to say a super 16mm (like a Krasnogorsk) or super8. These type of cams dont have alot of options.

You would have got a basic cam, chose your film stock (ie a fixed iso), set your film speed (24fps which the d90 uses for 1080p) and them you would have had an apature ring.

Isnt this what this cam offers, providing you can create the ideal light source for creating iso/shutter??

Thanks
James
You are correct -- which is why for us old guys that started with 8MM find the "lack of controls" arguments to be a bit silly. Of course, equally silly is the "I won't use no auto functions" attitude.

With the D90, the trick is needed because it's claimed it's the only way to get control of iso and shutter-speed.

With the Casio, I use ND filters to augment the camera's built-in choice of low shutter-speeds when shooting video. I guess the D90 doesn't switch to a VIDEO PROGRAM. Plus, the Casio also can show me the iso used, so it's EZ to know when to add light.

Think Bolex and you're in the right frame of mind. I mean the days when you had to manually select from three lenses (NO zoom), open the aperture to set focus, then dial the aperture determined by your Gossen Luna Six light-meter which was set-up with film-speed (ASA) and FPS (24fps). If you varied the shutter-angle -- you had to compute it's affect.

The value of all this you got a VERY strong understanding of exposure. These cameras would be great for teaching Digital Filmmaking. A D90 with 3 manual lenses and an audio recorder would be a good starting point. Then you would be really ready for a RED.
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Old February 8th, 2009, 04:01 PM   #5
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Thank you so much Steve for clearing that up for me.

Is there no way of knowing what the iso/shutter values are when looking at a certain light source??

This make make an excellent cam for learning the basics of cinemtography as you say.

Thanks again
James
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Old February 9th, 2009, 03:27 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by James Millward View Post
This make make an excellent cam for learning the basics of cinemtography as you say.
Don't know about the D90, but with the F1 I snap a pix while shooting a bit of video. Then I look at the settings of this pix.
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Old February 9th, 2009, 11:15 PM   #7
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James,

In Manual mode with a Nikkor 50mm 1.4 lens, I have to set the aperture ring to F22 for the camera to function. The D90 expects you to use the camera controls to set exposure manually so that's what I do. If you have an older fully manual lens I'm not sure if the camera will ignore everything or what.

I set it for 200 ISO, 50 frame rate, F8, EV -1 - all with AE-L and LV off.

Then I point it at my iPhone to one of a graduated series of .jpg files from 100% white to 50% white depending on the lighting I'm dealing with. I lock AE-L and go to LV with the iPhone right against the front of the lens.

The D90 takes my manual settings and it's own response to the iPhone and is ready to record video. If I need more light I can either add more to the scene or open up the aperture ring. The first click off of F22 and the D90 shows an "EE" error. Just ignore the error. When I go past F8 the lens opens up as you would expect with each click. Record when the scene looks like you want or shoot several takes bracketing as you go.

That "EE" error is why you have to set it back to F22 for the camera to function - even to take a still picture. The camera goes dead until it's back to "home".

You can get the same effect if you preset to any F-stop but my experience is that F8 works well for most indoor shots. Outside I either go to a slower lens, add polarizers, add ND filters or all of the above.

My iPhone trick doesn't work as well through the polarizers and ND when compared to the sun. So then we're back to finding a bright enough stable light source to use for a reference to set the camera.

Shooting outside has been kind of like you've both discussed with the old days of film - you don't really know what you've got until you get it on a computer or in a room with a monitor.

I do have an 8" portable LCD monitor that's much better outside than the D90 alone but you still need a hood to really see much on a bright day here in Florida.

Hope this helps.
-a-
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