What shutter speed for rockets bursting in the sky?

excalibur2

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#1
Well I've forgotten o_O:rolleyes: I suppose the aperture would be say f4....well I'll also cheat by setting the T90 on semi auto to see what results it can get.
 
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#3
Pervious thread on this was here, and has a link to an earlier thread. I used f/4 1 second and it seemed to work quite well. Better to use a tripod than a monopod! @Asha had a nice idea of opening the shutter and locking it on B, and using a black card over the lens as an external shutter to allow for multiple exposures on the one frame. If you want to bracket, as I wanted to, remember a torch (which I didn't) so you can see to change the settings!
 
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#4
SS is fairly irrelevant... Aperture and ISO are the relevant camera settings, how bright the explosion is and how long it lasts (trails) determines the rest of the exposure (just like flash photography). I would be at f/8-16 and ISO 100-200... use SS/timing to control when/where the image starts/stops.
 
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excalibur2

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#5
Thanks for the replies and this is not going to be easy as it looks like I'll have to use a tripod and am not going to a firework display and so I'm thinking I won't know where the rockets will be coming from (to swing the tripod).
I'm also thinking of using a 19mm lens to cover most of the sky but am not sure if that is too wide...anyway I'll see how it goes as there is always new year's eve and of course next year ;)
I like the idea of the card over the lens for multiple exposures and it looks like I'll have to roughly time the first rocket explosion to set the shutter speed..I'm guessing that if the rocket display lasts three seconds then I would think you would set the shutter speed slower to get it all in....I've got Kodak gold 100 iso that should give some vivid colours.
Diwali was quite nice the other day but thought it would be a short display so didn't get the camera out :(
 
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#6
Well fireworks on film now there's a fun challenge and I look forward to seeing the results, I don't really know about the aspects specific to the use of film...but assuming your going to an organised professional display you will likely not need to go past 10 seconds exposure time.. I'd use something like a 100-200 ISO film when I'm shooting I tend to use ISO500ish on my 5D3 but on film I'd go less to be safe, aperture wise I wouldn't shoot wide open, but f/8 should really be the smallest you'd need to stop down too, then I personally shoot in bulb so I can judge the start and stop times based on the intensity of the fireworksIt might be worth you reading my guide to fireworks as linked in my signature for a full write up

Thanks @TheBigYin for the tag
 
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excalibur2

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#7
Well fireworks on film now there's a fun challenge and I look forward to seeing the results, I don't really know about the aspects specific to the use of film...but assuming your going to an organised professional display you will likely not need to go past 10 seconds exposure time.. I'd use something like a 100-200 ISO film when I'm shooting I tend to use ISO500ish on my 5D3 but on film I'd go less to be safe, aperture wise I wouldn't shoot wide open, but f/8 should really be the smallest you'd need to stop down too, then I personally shoot in bulb so I can judge the start and stop times based on the intensity of the fireworksIt might be worth you reading my guide to fireworks as linked in my signature for a full write up

Thanks @TheBigYin for the tag
VG tutorial Matthew and am not going to a pro display but know there is going to be one about 3/4 mile away and indeed it will be a challenge on a tripod trying to follow the rockets from that display as well as the rockets from neighbours nearby...and Ok will admit a digi can be useful at times when faced with a lot of failures :D
Also it will be interesting if Photoshop can do a pano of my shots.
 
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#8
Well I'm thinking 100 speed film at f/8 5-10 seconds
Maybe you can break 10 seconds what with reciprocity, a black sky and not much light pollution.
I'm not down with under exposure, I'd rather blow it to uselessness than under cook it, its kinda like putting, you have to give it the opportunity to go in the hole by hitting it hard enough, falling short is..........irritating...:)
 
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excalibur2

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#10
Well I'm thinking 100 speed film at f/8 5-10 seconds
Maybe you can break 10 seconds what with reciprocity, a black sky and not much light pollution.
I'm not down with under exposure, I'd rather blow it to uselessness than under cook it, its kinda like putting, you have to give it the opportunity to go in the hole by hitting it hard enough, falling short is..........irritating...:)
No one has mentioned what lens...I've plenty of 24mms for mechanical cameras on bulb but for my 19mm only have the T70 or T90...for the T90 can set at 10secs or bulb on the T70...and one up for cheap film cameras over expensive digi as there is nothing stopping me setting up 3 or more cameras on tripods to different parts of the sky...h'mm what are the chances of knocking one over :eek:
 

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#12
VG tutorial Matthew and am not going to a pro display but know there is going to be one about 3/4 mile away and indeed it will be a challenge on a tripod trying to follow the rockets from that display as well as the rockets from neighbours nearby...and Ok will admit a digi can be useful at times when faced with a lot of failures :D
Also it will be interesting if Photoshop can do a pano of my shots.
Thanks, trying to follow the rockets your asking for lots of failures, far easier to shoot reasonably wide angled and take in both the fireworks and the vista

On a less organised display if you need to use a longer exposure to effectively expose for multiple separate explosions you could use the black card trick of covering the lens between fireworks to extend the exposure time without fear or blowing the skies or other light sources
 
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excalibur2

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#13
Thanks, trying to follow the rockets your asking for lots of failures, far easier to shoot reasonably wide angled and take in both the fireworks and the vista

On a less organised display if you need to use a longer exposure to effectively expose for multiple separate explosions you could use the black card trick of covering the lens between fireworks to extend the exposure time without fear or blowing the skies or other light sources
Well thinking I'll set one camera up on a tripod with 24mm pointing towards the firework display sky (3/4 mile away) and the other camera with 19mm pointing nearly straight up for near neighbour's rockets...and with a bit of luck should get something. But as I've found two spent rockets in my back garden from Diwali..h'mm it would be back luck if one rocket landed on my 19mm lens :eek: One year a pane of my greenhouse was smashed and as it was on the side it must have hit it near horizontal for a miss fire. :(
 
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#14
Well thinking I'll set one camera up on a tripod with 24mm pointing towards the firework display sky (3/4 mile away) and the other camera with 19mm pointing nearly straight up for near neighbour's rockets...and with a bit of luck should get something. But as I've found two spent rockets in my back garden from Diwali..h'mm it would be back luck if one rocket landed on my 19mm lens :eek: One year a pane of my greenhouse was smashed and as it was on the side it must have hit it near horizontal for a miss fire. :(
It's possible but I think you'd be unlucky to get you or your camera hit..I hope your successful in catching the fireworks :) especially as I'd love to see the results via film
 
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excalibur2

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#15
It's possible but I think you'd be unlucky to get you or your camera hit..I hope your successful in catching the fireworks :) especially as I'd love to see the results via film
Well come on guys forget the pub or tv and get your film camera out for some film shots and there might be a very slim chance Matthew would be persuaded to use a film camera again o_O
 

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#16
Well come on guys forget the pub or tv and get your film camera out for some film shots and there might be a very slim chance Matthew would be persuaded to use a film camera again o_O
Oh I don't know about that :p but stranger things have happened
 
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excalibur2

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#17
Well I've worked it all out that a 8 year old kid could operate and no skill needed for a beginner but luck to get results:- I have two cameras on tripods facing parts of the sky and in between I'm sitting in a chair, well the T90 has cable release for 10 secs (or whatever), but I ain't got another T90 but a F90x and that can be set at 10 secs but I only have a non AI 24mm and it could damage the mount using it, but do have a 28mm zoom.
So a rocket above, then fire the T90 with 19mm lens or in the distance fire the F90x (with no cable)....the other alternative would be to use any mechanical camera on "b" with a 24mm lens and fire the shutter and release after the burst has ended, so might have this in reserve if I think I need to get more in with a 24mm lens.....I'm looking forward to this esp as it doesn't look like its going to rain.

Edit: I've got a film to use up in the RB h'mm now where is that manual to set up for "B" or is it "T" ..so out of three cameras should get something....well yes of course but are the shots going to be any good :notworthy:
 
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excalibur2

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#19
Well I've got everything set up already the T70 and RB67 will be on "B" with 24mm and 65mm lenses and it could be the biggest cock-up since Alfred burnt the cakes ;)......my crappy Canon ixus 870 only gives sharp pics close up :(
IMG_9722.JPG
 
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#21
Thinking about this a bit. If a rocket is bursting at a bit under 100m (assuming the burst goes up to 100m), and the viewer is 100m away, then the angle would be 45 degrees. From what I can see, a 28mm lens, which according to Pentaxforums has a horizontal field of view of 65 degrees would comfortably get that in if in portrait mode and at an angle. A 20mm lens (horizontal field of view 84 degrees) would almost work shooting horizontally in portrait mode (thought there may be other reasons not to do this)

If you were 400m away from the same fireworks, the angle would only be 14 degrees, and a 50mm lens (horizontal field of view 40 degrees) would be adequate.

If you were a kilometre away, the angle is 6 degrees, and at this distance you're probably wanting a 135mm lens (horizontal field of view 15 degrees). Fireworks get much less impressive the further away they are!
 

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#23
Only quitters use a light meter, here in f and c we use an archaic system of magic spells to work out timings and distances. A frog must be sacrificed....:banana:
 
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excalibur2

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#24
Thinking about this a bit. If a rocket is bursting at a bit under 100m (assuming the burst goes up to 100m), and the viewer is 100m away, then the angle would be 45 degrees. From what I can see, a 28mm lens, which according to Pentaxforums has a horizontal field of view of 65 degrees would comfortably get that in if in portrait mode and at an angle. A 20mm lens (horizontal field of view 84 degrees) would almost work shooting horizontally in portrait mode (thought there may be other reasons not to do this)

If you were 400m away from the same fireworks, the angle would only be 14 degrees, and a 50mm lens (horizontal field of view 40 degrees) would be adequate.

If you were a kilometre away, the angle is 6 degrees, and at this distance you're probably wanting a 135mm lens (horizontal field of view 15 degrees). Fireworks get much less impressive the further away they are!
That's interesting Chris. From your calculations I'll use a forth camera with a zoom to find what lens to put on the cameras (on the tripod) after seeing a few bursts.The firework display is about 1/2 to 3/4 mile away and I'm on a hill and what I don't want is all sky and a little pic of a burst rocket (h'mm alright using a drum scanner to crop the shot ;) ) but at the same time I want to cover enough sky as the rockets won't be bursting in exactly the same place each time and to complicate things further some rockets give a better\wider display and I suppose I'll have to take a shot of every rocket...probably depends on how much cash the organisers are gonna spend.
At Diwali I'm not sure a 19mm lens would have covered the burst overhead.
Of course my wife could use her i-phone and take a video and say "there you go" :rolleyes:
 

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#25
B and some black card! When you see the rocket heading skyward, remove the card. Maybe 4 or 5 rocket bursts per frame. f/8 should leave some colour in the trails, much wider and they'll burn out to too pale. For the mortars (more common than rockets these days), listen for the crump as they're fired and remove the card - you might see the launch flash but you'll almost certainly hear/feel it!
 
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excalibur2

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#26
B and some black card! When you see the rocket heading skyward, remove the card. Maybe 4 or 5 rocket bursts per frame. f/8 should leave some colour in the trails, much wider and they'll burn out to too pale. For the mortars (more common than rockets these days), listen for the crump as they're fired and remove the card - you might see the launch flash but you'll almost certainly hear/feel it!
Well I thought about a card over the lens but surely holding down the plunger on the shutter cable would be easier? Ok will set the lenses at f8 and have 400 iso in the RB and gold 100 iso in the two 35mm cameras. The hardest bit will be setting the angle of the cameras on the tripod to make sure the burst are covered once the lenses are chosen.
With all this info here isn't anybody else going to take any shots?
 

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#27
Holding the card over the lens allows an almost unlimited exposure so you can capture several air bursts on one frame, leaving the shutter open with the lens exposed will catch loads of light pollution as well as the important bits. Depending on the final use (scan/print or wet print will allow cropping of the final image to improve framing but shooting straight to slide will be... challenging! If you do the d**i**l thing as well, have a practise and chimp.
I would get out and shoot some but the boss (feline!) doesn't like fireworks so we stay in and distract her. Haven't actually tried on d**i**l and can't remember the exact settings I used on film but it was almost certainly ISO 400 neg (my default autumn/winter speed of choice!) and f/8, B and card; the possible variation will be the film speed, it might have been 200.
 
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#28
... For the mortars (more common than rockets these days), listen for the crump as they're fired and remove the card - you might see the launch flash but you'll almost certainly hear/feel it!
If he's 1/2 to 3/4 a mile away it's take 2-4 seconds for the sound to get there, the burst will be mostly over by then. Mind you, same idea but just move the card when you see the start of the burst, they last a reasonable time.
 
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excalibur2

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#30
Holding the card over the lens allows an almost unlimited exposure so you can capture several air bursts on one frame, leaving the shutter open with the lens exposed will catch loads of light pollution as well as the important bits. Depending on the final use (scan/print or wet print will allow cropping of the final image to improve framing but shooting straight to slide will be... challenging! If you do the d**i**l thing as well, have a practise and chimp.
I would get out and shoot some but the boss (feline!) doesn't like fireworks so we stay in and distract her. Haven't actually tried on d**i**l and can't remember the exact settings I used on film but it was almost certainly ISO 400 neg (my default autumn/winter speed of choice!) and f/8, B and card; the possible variation will be the film speed, it might have been 200.
Well I don't think my half working Ixus 870 could cope for anything d**i**l over 2ft :D
And one thing I'll have to remember is... I have a built in latch that slides over the viewfinder on the T90, and I'll stick a bit of tape on the others..just in case stray light gets in for the long exposures.
 
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Nod

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#31
Good idea. Having said that, it took 10s of holding my D700's viewfinder up to strong sunlight to get it to do this with the lens cap on...
leakage
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excalibur2

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#32
Well I've prepared well for tonight and found my RB67 180mm lens is not working properly :( and down to two tripods as the third one, the vert to horizontal swivel platform for the camera was loose so tightened it up and the casting cracked and a piece broke off......h'mm £3 bootsale Photax.:( Now what else could go wrong :eek:
 
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excalibur2

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#34
An extinction level meteor strike.

A zombie apocolypse

And it will be all your fault

:)
:eek: H'mm meteors.....our roof is low so it cut across the bedroom on one side and sometimes hear like pebbles rolling down the tiles and often thought it was debri from the sky. o_O
 
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excalibur2

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#36
Well other than being savaged by a fox or breaking a leg tripping over a mole hill..and all added up have some great excuses if my shots are a load of crap :D
 
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excalibur2

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#37
Well that was a dead loss...I was holding two shutter release cables for 2 hours, my nose was running and fingers numb and not one rocket went up into the sky, plenty of low stuff inc the display 1/2 mile away but no use for me because of trees around. So my advice is wait till new years eve or go to a good firework display.
When I think about it, fireworks are for kids on the 5th and many were probably taken to a pro display BUT new year's eve is when the grown ups have parties etc and quite a few come out after midnight for a firework display, so this year I'll won't have my pint of cider and have another go.
Soon as I walked indoors my glasses temporarily steamed up so I'm going leave the cameras in the garage for a bit before bringing them indoors
 
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#40
I went to the Kenilworth Castle fireworks (round the back this time) with tripod, Pentax MX, 28mm lens,f/8, shutter release, Vista 400, and took the remaining 16 frames or so on the film. 24mm (or wider) would have been better, I think I was too close. I'm guessing I probably kept the shutter open too long most of the time; I realised afterwards that the premise for the black card approach was bursts happening in different parts of the sky, whereas these bursts all seemed to be in roughly the same place.
 
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