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Thread: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

  1. #1

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    Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    I have a Nikon d 40, it has the advantage of being a very portable camera.
    I want to take pics in interiors this Christmas and the flash is not very powerful, but they have told me at the academy to put some paper on top of it, to get better results with the light. To defuse the light. I don't know if I can find the special thing for it here in Medellín.
    ¿Is it a good trick?

    I have been learning for six months, and now all I see is bad pictures, because I am learning what it takes to get a good picture.
    Can I take good pictures with this equipment on interiors?
    What do you think?
    Thank you for your comments,
    Catalina
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 14th November 2011 at 05:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon d40 with incorporated flash ¿has it many possibilities?

    Hi Catalina, although this camera is now 6 year old technology it has all the features that you will need to help develop your skills. Just keep practising and if the flash is not powerful enough buy a cheap second hand one.

    mark

  3. #3

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    Re: Nikon d40 with incorporated flash ¿has it many possibilities?

    Mark: Thank you very much for the advise
    Catalina

  4. #4

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    Re: Nikon d40 with incorporated flash ¿has it many possibilities?

    Hi Catalina,

    D40 is a nice camera. I have seen some great pictures taken with D40. So feel relaxed as far as your gear is concerned. I would suggest you to roam around with tripod and buy a cheap flash, as Mark said.

  5. #5
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon d40 with incorporated flash ¿has it many possibilities?

    Generally, the built in flash even on top-line cameras that incorporate this feature are not all that great. They are not powerful and the ones that I am familiar with cannot be bounced efficiently.

    There are some eBay items that advertise that they will improve the quality of light from the built-in flash but, I would expect that you would be better off putting that money to buying a low priced hotshoe flash that would include bounce capability and which would be more powerful than the built-in flash.

    There are used Nikon models on eBay (make sure they will allow thru the lens metering with your camera) as well as third party brand hotshoe flashes such as the Yungnuo, Sunpak, Vivitar and other brands.

    I would look for the following capabilities:

    1. Thru the lens metering
    2. Tilt capability
    3. Swivel capability (which is important when bouncing the flash with the camera in the portrait position)
    4. Manual exposure capability - this can be important but, IMO is not absolutely critical

    When you get the hotshoe flash of some type. buy or fabricate a diffuser reflector:

    I like the Joe Demb Flash Diffuser Pro www.dembflashproducts.com

    Nikon D40  with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    Nikon D40  with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    However, you can fabricate a diffuser/reflector at little or no cost out of cardboard or foamboard;

    http://super.nova.org/DPR/DIY01/

  6. #6

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    Re: Nikon d40 with incorporated flash ¿has it many possibilities?

    Hi Catalina,

    The D40 was my first camera, and I still make use of it.
    Take advantage of it as it is great for learning on.

    As for taking photos while inside. No issues there. Like other are recommending, get yourself a compatible flash and you are set.

    Erik

  7. #7
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    Hi Catalina,

    Quote Originally Posted by catalina View Post
    I have a Nikon D40, ~ I want to take pics in interiors this Christmas and the flash is not very powerful, but they have told me at the academy to put some paper on top of it, to get better results with the light. To defuse the light. I don't know if I can find the special thing for it here in Medellín.
    ¿Is it a good trick?
    The aim of "adding paper" is to, as you say; diffuse, or enlarge, the light source area from say, 20mm x 8mm to something bigger.

    Yes, this is a good trick, but only to an extent; as you say, the on camera flash is not powerful and this will make it less effective, not more! It will be a better quality light, but also a dimmer light


    Quote Originally Posted by catalina View Post
    I have been learning for six months, and now all I see is bad pictures, because I am learning what it takes to get a good picture.
    That's because there are a lot of bad pictures about on the net
    If you meant yours look bad now, don't worry, that is normal, they'll improve in time when you put into practice what you are learning, both at the academy and here.

    Quote Originally Posted by catalina View Post
    Can I take good pictures with this equipment on interiors?
    What do you think?
    If you mean whole room interiors, probably not with the on camera flash, hence everyone recommending a hot shoe flash to give more power, and, with the addition of a hot shoe connector and cable, a means to get it away from the camera.

    Good luck,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 14th November 2011 at 05:00 PM.

  8. #8

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    Re: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    I would just add one thing to what has been said. I hope it is not so obvious that you are insulted by my mentioning it. The guide number of your flash unit goes up as you increase the ISO. Increasing the ISO from 200 to 400 increases the guide number by a factor of the square root of 2 == approximately 1.4; going from 200 to 800 increases the guide number by a factor of the square root of 4, or 2, etc. Since you mentioned that your built-in flash is not all that powerful, and since you are considering adding a diffuser that will lower the light intensity still further, it is worth remembering that upping the ISO can help you get the shot, even with flash. FWIW

  9. #9
    FrankMi's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    Hi Catalina, if you are looking to take interior pictures and there is no movement in the composition, such as smiling cherub faces, all you need is a tripod and a longer exposure. None of my interior pictures were done with a flash or any other auxiliary lighting. Here is an interior hallway with no windows, just the overhead lights on. Taken on a tripod at a 6 second exposure.

    Nikon D40  with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    If the subject is close enough to the camera's built in flash, then you should be able to get a proper exposure. It's only when the subject is too far away that the flash might not be powerful enough to provide sufficent light for the distance involved.

    If you want to see more of the interior pictures taken without flash, click on the link in my signature below for the publicly posted images starting at about image # 70. Hope this helps!

  10. #10

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    Re: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    The D40 is an excellent camera. And you are on the right track - you need to learn to use flash. Here's a good place to start:

    http://strobist.blogspot.com/2006/03/lighting-101.html

  11. #11

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    Re: Nikon D40 with incorporated flash - has it many possibilities?

    I have a D40 and together with the 18-55 kitlens it is great for your average livingroom shots. Family snapshots around the Christmas-tree is just the thing why the build-in flash is there on the camera (unless you have a 70foot dining-room with a 30foot ceiling).
    If you want a slight diffusion, just to reduce the reflections on shiny objects, I can suggest something like a leaf of cigarette-paper. It scatters the light nicely without taking away too much of the brightness (and thus reach) of the light.
    Last edited by Hero; 28th November 2011 at 11:20 PM.

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