Shutter Speed

This is a discussion on Shutter Speed within the Photography Discussion forums, part of the PHOTO FORUM category; I am a total newbie to digital photography. I have been successful with "normal" photos using automatic mode. I want to photograph a race car ...


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Thread: Shutter Speed

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    I am a total newbie to digital photography. I have been successful with "normal" photos using automatic mode. I want to photograph a race car traveling at 120 mph from approximately 50 yards. I tried automatic mode. Although I did get a photo of the car it was rather blurry. I can choose to use shutter speed priority mode but I don't know what speed to set. Any suggestions? Thank you.


  • #2
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    Hi there and firstly welcome to the forum.

    Your shutter speed will be governed by the available light, not enough light you won't get the speed unless you up the ISO and then we are talking grain.

    So if light is no problem and you can get a high shutter speed then I would think anything above 1/600th should suffice - I am sure there will be some on here who are more used to this type of photography and respond with the correct speed and some tips on shooting race cars

  • #3
    Paint the sky with desire
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    Hi there and firstly welcome to the forum.

    Your shutter speed will be governed by the available light, not enough light you won't get the speed unless you up the ISO and then we are talking grain.

    So if light is no problem and you can get a high shutter speed then I would think anything above [b]1/600th should suffice - I am sure there will be some on here who are more used to this type of photography and respond with the correct speed and some tips on shooting race cars
    ^^ Thats a good starting point but if you can go faster then do so. That will get you a very static image!

    On the other hand, if you want to photograph the car while having the background blur you will need to set the shutter speed to about 1/120 or 1/180 and pan the shot. (Note: you can set the shutter speed lower than that but your panning technique will need to be flawless) This is a harder technique to master but, when done right it produces magnificent results!
    Colblue's Blog[/url]

  • #4

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    generally speaking for motor sport start at around 1/500.. a good way is to pre focus on a point were the subject will pass and shoot several frames....panning is the alternative as previously suggested...but make sure your swing is clean , unbroken and totally 180........

  • #5

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    Sep 2007
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    Thanks for all your help. I had absolutely no idea where to even start choosing a shutter speed. I will be attending a race event on October 6-7. Will experiment with your suggetions. I can't tell you how ecstatic I am to have found this forum! I'll be back and I look forward to learning.
    Susan

  • #6

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    Why didnt you just experiment while you were there????

  • #7
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    Joey she was waiting for the Photoforum tips

  • #8

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    Sep 2007
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    Why didnt you just experiment while you were there????
    'cuz I'm a total novice to digital, had no idea how to use the doggone camera, thought automatic mode would work because it had from other positions on the track, had no idea what shutter speed to begin with, photos did look fine in the viewer. I was at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. It is a 4 mile track. I posted myself at various places around the track for photos and all of them came out fine. I was almost able to get inside the retaining wall on the front straight. It was the closest shot I was able to get all day so I had nothing to compare it with, had no idea the shots wouldn't come out on automatic (even though I used burst mode) and, as I mentioned above, the shots looked fine in the viewer. Unfortunately, this was the last heat of the event so I had no opporutnity to try anything else to get the close ups of the fast moving subject. When I got home and viewed the photos and realized the close ups didn't come out well, I quickly scoured the internet for helpful sites and found this one. Since my next event was coming in October, I needed to get help and here I am.

    So . . . . . . . . . ask a woman a simple question and look what you get

    Talk to you soon.


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