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Thread: Mirror (lock) up

  1. #1
    crisscross's Avatar
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    Mirror (lock) up

    I know this has been aired before or I wouldn't know it existed, nor that it doesn't on my D80, I think it came in with D300.

    The question is how much of the camera shake originates from the mirror action? I am assuming a less-than-ideal tripod (as I can't afford or physically carry) a robust one. Secondly I am an 'outsider using' a 80-400VR for landscape and hate most w/a shots. The 80-400VR has a mount that balances camera+lens extremely evenly.

    Using such tripods as I have, an old cheapo or Optera 460 pro, I find i actually get worse, ie obvious movement double-imaging, than handholding.

    Do people generally use MUP on tripods, or is a little known cult?

    If so, can one in fact get away with a lighter tripod than otherwise using a longish lens?

    (I know I need a camera with MUP - am working my way towards pulling enough out of life savings for D7000!)

  2. #2
    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    It tends to be a problem around the one second exposure times. Assuming the camera is on a tripod then exposures faster than about 1/15s or slower than a couple of seconds aren't affected. It's the in-between ones where and movement caused by the mirror moving becomes a significant part of the exposure and can cause 'camera shake' that may blur an image.

    Best to try a few exposures and see if your camera/tripod/technique is causing problems. I use Mirror Lock-Up on my D300s rarely as my shutter times tend to be either side of the speeds I mentioned.
    If you do intend to use it then you're going to need a remote cord or remote release as you can't use the Self Timer and Mirror Lock at the same time.

  3. #3
    crisscross's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    Thank you Robin. It sounds a good idea to avoid that range of exposure times, plus a bit. That's all I can do for the time being as D80 doesn't have MUP; I am trying to work out if it is something worth paying serious money for, sometime.

    I have been using the remote for the actual shutter release to avoid shake arising from hand pressure.

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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    I think that you may well have mirro-lock up - http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=19914824

    Here's what one user says; "D80 does have a form of MLU. Its found in Custom Menu 31 - Exsposure Delay mode which introduces a 0.4 s delay to shutter-release to reduce camera shake (macro, telescope, microscope photography).

    31 Exp. delay mode

    • Off
    • On

    Introduces a 0.4 s delay to shutter-release to reduce camera shake (macro, telescope, microscope photography)."

    Used with the remote, this should do nicely

    HTH

  5. #5
    crisscross's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    Thank you Peter - this could well be a useful and adequate work-around

    (in case anyone reads through the DPR debate, the guy is wrong about not being able to choose the time for the actual shot, the remote does that, ie you press the remote, the autofocus does its thing if it is still on, then the mirror moves and 0.4 secs after that, the shutter works)

    I need to try it out in real life, in short term on an indoor situation, tomorrow maybe we will even have daylight.

    (and another 20 or so menu settings I never reached before! Fun)

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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    Chris,
    When using your 80-400 VR on the tripod turn OFF the VR. Give that a try – if it work's I'll try to explain. If it doesn't work you won't want to know anyway!

    Regards,

    Nick.

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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    yep Nick i was just about to mention VR ON during tripod operations, you should always turn it off when using a tripod,cheers martyn

  8. #8
    crisscross's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    On a quick indoor run, the combination of using the .4 sec delay and VR off + remote looks quite promising and putting VR on definitely sabotages it. Used Optera 460 pro aiming at bookcase about 5M away in normal room lighting; 370mm, f13 Aperture priority yielding 1/5 or 1/6 sec.

    Having said that, not sure there is any improvement in sharpness over handheld with VR and flash on. Great improvement on exposure as built-in flash pretty well spent at that distance; being able to do slow exposures is obviously one of the objects of using tripod. The other is doing blends and using the bracket function should get suitable varied exposures for that. Not into macro rails or anything that complicated.

    The Optera provides safe support, but wobbles like a jelly if even breathed over

    Will try using ancient telescopic aluminium tripod outdoors at greater range tomorrow & post results. If as satisfactory D80 gets a new lease of life.

    Thank you Nick and Martyn
    Last edited by crisscross; 10th February 2011 at 09:25 PM.

  9. #9
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    Also try adding a little bit of weight to the tripod center, this puts force on the legs and adds stability. I am using a polycarbonate body tripod and it helps.

  10. #10

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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    I always use MLU when I am using a tripod. It seems way more trouble to go through some mental checklist of expected exposure times vs a theoretical safety zone ( which I have seen some data against, btw) than to simply set up the MLU once and use it.

    What's the rush - the camera's on a tripod anyway. After all the effort and thought of setting up the rig in the right place at the right time at the right height with the right lens with the right aperture and the right filter and the right exposure, the actual taking of the pictures is supposed to be our period of zen, right?

  11. #11
    rob marshall

    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    Quote Originally Posted by black pearl View Post
    If you do intend to use it then you're going to need a remote cord or remote release as you can't use the Self Timer and Mirror Lock at the same time.
    You can on the Canon 50D, and possiibly other Canons. You set MLU and self-timer, press the shutter release, the mirror flips up, the timer starts, the sensor is exposed, and after exposure the mirror flips back. You can also do the same thing thing using Liveview. If you use a Panasonic 'G' series four-thirds camera you don't have this problem at all because there is no mirror to shake the camera!

  12. #12
    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    You can on the Canon 50D, and possiibly other Canons
    But not on Nikon's which is what the question was about - out of interest I've tried it on a 60D and a 7D and both these do have it. I think this is down to the way the two brands access settings. On the Nikon Pro bodies the drive modes have an access wheel whereas the canon bodies have it via a button and menu options. It's faster on a Nikon but you get more combinations on a Canon.........can't win either way.

    On a side note you can set the delayed shutter release via a menu on a Nikon AND use it with the self timer - saves buying a madly expensive Nikon remote cord.

  13. #13
    Black Pearl's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    You can on the Canon 50D, and possiibly other Canons
    But not on Nikon's which is what the question was about - out of interest I've tried it on a 60D and a 7D and both these do have it. I think this is down to the way the two brands access settings. On the Nikon Pro bodies the drive modes have an access wheel whereas the canon bodies have it via a button and menu options. It's faster on a Nikon but you get more combinations on a Canon.........can't win either way.

    On a side note you can set the delayed shutter release via a menu on a Nikon AND use it with the self timer - saves buying a madly expensive Nikon remote cord.

  14. #14
    crisscross's Avatar
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    Re: Mirror (lock) up

    This morning I have tried the test outdoors in pretty poor light, but then I would mostly resort to a tripod when struggling for light.

    I conclude that eliminating the mirror movement is critical and well worth the trouble in getting the right settings; the 0.4 sec delay on my D80 seems adequate for the task - infinite gratitude to Peter for pointing me towards it.

    All with D80+Nikkor 80-400VR at 340mm; the full exif is intact if you drag the pics to where it can be used. All 680x450 crops. Building about 400M away

    Firstly a 'control' using the camera handheld with VR on ISO100 f9 1/200sec, which is my normal 'target' for landscape shots. I have had to compensate exposure +1.5EV and slightly increase contrast for comparison of noise and sharpness.

    Mirror (lock) up

    Now using Optera 'tripod' with VR off ISO400.f13 1/200. No PP except straighten & crop

    Mirror (lock) up

    And now Stabilo telescopic stainless tripod from dark ages with dirt cheap head. ISO100 f10 1/80, no PP except crop

    Mirror (lock) up

    I also tried higher f and slower shutter, but little difference.

    The final conclusion seems to be that if one does eliminate mirror shake and has no sophisticated requirements, a modestly priced tripod and head should do.

    The Optera is an emergency bendy bunny pocket thing. The Stabilo must date from the 40s or 50s and the head came off a 4 ebay monopod. Almost anything modern should be better?...except that the Stabilo folds to 400mm, so it may not get recycled just yet

    Thanks again to all contributors

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