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Old March 17th, 2011, 03:17 AM   #1
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Shutter Speeds at Weddings

Hi Guys and Girls

I was wondering if anyone has discovered what shutter speed limits need to be observed at various points of the wedding ceremony. I really don't want to end up with motion blur cos I shot the dancing at 1/6th!!!!

Obviously ceremonies are pretty free of fast motion unless you decide to do a fast pan!! but what do you consider a safe shutter speed for events like bridal entry and dancing where there is going to be movement???

Chris
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Old March 17th, 2011, 03:43 AM   #2
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

1/50 is my stock shutter speed. I try never to go under that. In extreme low light (at receptions) I've occasionally dropped it to 1/30 but usually it's glued at 1/50.

Why would you want to go any slower if you have enough light to shoot in ?
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Old March 17th, 2011, 04:23 AM   #3
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

Forgive my questioning Chris but it seems an odd question from a man of your experience.
I never go below 1/50th. I have tried going lower but I find that any movement in the frame results in an ethereal ghosting around the movement. It looks very arty but not something I'd want as my source material unless for a specific reason.
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Old March 17th, 2011, 08:16 AM   #4
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

Thanks guys!!

George?? My new cameras have all the controls on the outside so shooting in manual is now no excuse!!!
I usually stick with 1/50th as well but I was purely wondering if other do shoot lower...the fear of motion blur have prevented me from dropping below 1/50th but on my older HMC's iris control and shutter speed was menu based and I'm sure you know that fiddling with menus during a wedding just doesn't happen time wise...even on the HMC70 I used to shoot mainly in auto since even in shutter priority mode actually controlling the iris was menu driven. Hence the reluctance to go manual!! I suppose I have shot the last 200 weddings using mainly auto, especially when things are happening fast!!!!

The HMC82's now have external iris and shutter speed controls that you can actually operate even with the cams on your shoulder so I can switch to manual and control everything in a heartbeat..impossible before!!!

I come from film cameras back in the old days and auto just wasn't used (can't even remember if my Mamiya RB67's had an auto mode!!!!)

I must admit that even at 1/25th just a gentle pan causes an image degradation. Luckily the cam defaults to 1/50th when you switch to manual which is great inside the reception but a bit of an issue in bright sunlight!!! The cam has "+" and "-" shutter speed buttons as well as ring allocation (I keep that for focus !!)
so upping shutter speed is quick and easy.

My overall reason was if one was stuck in a very dim Church with no lights permitted then it's nice to have an option to prevent underexposed footage or footage with too much gain!!! Ceremonies in Churches tend to have precious little movement so one could get away with 1/25th if that was the only option.

What do you do in a Church that's as dark as a dungeon and the priest says no lights????

Chris
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Old March 17th, 2011, 08:59 AM   #5
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

All of my cameras have always had a default of 1/50 being in PAL land. I've tried upping and downing but stick with 1/50 to match the frame/field rate. The only time I vary is when shooting CRT screens when I adjust to avoid flicker.
We have some very dark medieval churches here and I don't know one that will allow the use of additional lighting. Firstly I always tell the couple at the time of enquiry if I know their church to have problems with the lighting, or anything else for that matter. My Fujinon lens is f1.4 which helps but if I still need more exposure I usually rely on increasing the gain, on my cameras I've always found that I can go to +9 with little trouble. I then add any further correction in post with an exposure increase in Magic Bullet Looks. I think slightly grainy is better than slightly blurry.
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Old March 17th, 2011, 02:55 PM   #6
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

Your minimum acceptable shutter speed depends on your particular camera. I think a Sony Z1 looks terrible at 1/30 regardless of the scene you're shooting, but I think the Sony NX5 looks great down to 1/24 in any condition that a wedding would present.

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Old March 18th, 2011, 05:21 AM   #7
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Re: Shutter Speeds at Weddings

I never go below 1/50th during the ceremony.

For receptions, I'll occasionally drop to 1/25th during the speeches if it's very dark and I'm already at full gain. I try to avoid it and it's a last resort.

I'll also shoot some dancing and stuff at 1/12th for effect at the end of the night... that way it looks more like they remember it!
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