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How do i take pictures of my laser?

rathat

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So I tried to take a picture of my X100 112mw laser but I don't know how to. I can't see the beam well in the pictures. also I see videos of lasers weaker than mine that the beam is seen in them. i can see the beam fine but i don't know how to take a picture of it. What settings should i use? Do i need to use fog?
 



GamerBR

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You have to set the exposure time higher than default,but in several cameras this is not possible,check if in your camera you can set a specific exposure time.
 

Bionic-Badger

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Turn down the lights and turn up the exposure time. You might also want to change the ISO setting of your camera to the lowest possible setting to cut down on the noise. Also, photographing with the beam approaching the camera usually yields brighter beam shots.
 

styropyro

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Adding a little fog/smoke/dust to the beam will help too.
 

lazerguy

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My laser beams are almost invisible without a little smoke when using my camera. But if I just add very little smoke (ie. lighting a match) it becomes very visible. So try lighting a match or burning some electrical tape, it'll help bring out the beam.

And don't forget to turn the flash off! ;)
 

lam3

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Buy a fog machine and get a picture like this ;).

(Picture is of a Dragonlasers Viper 95.)

P1070345.jpg
 

GooeyGus

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Well... you can use long exposure like this shot (it also doesn't hurt to be using a 400mW laser):

000_0146.jpg


Or, fog machine + a little bit of a long exposure also does wonders, like this shot:

this4.jpg
 

Spyderz20x6

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If i remember correctly, you need to set a high exposure time, and the highest possible ISO setting?
 

GooeyGus

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Spyderz20x6 said:
If i remember correctly, you need to set a high exposure time, and the highest possible ISO setting?

You want to use the lowest ISO you can, because a high ISO adds noise to the picture. For example, all my pics are only using ISO64 or ISO100, with a long exposure.
 

Napalm_Fire

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I would say that you should keep your ISO as high as you can get it without the photo looking awful when properly exposed.. A properly exposed photo at a high ISO will look rather good if it has everything lit well and evenly. If you shoot a photo with a lot of shadows, the shadows will tend to become very crowded with noise. Keeping the shot sharp but noisy will look better than a blurry image with no noise..

Second, lower your shutter speed. Look for a "manual mode" and adjust the number which is displayed as a fraction(1/100th, 1/250th) until you get it to show " next to it. A shutter speed of 3" is 3 seconds. If you don't see a manual mode, look for a night time mode or fireworks mode, and keep the flash off. I'd recommend you keep the shutter speed above 1/30th handheld. If you have image stabilization, you may be able to get it longer than that with decent results. Using a tripod will let you set your shutter speed as long as you want it without recording camera shake. Use the self timer with the longer shutter speeds and tripod to reduce any possible camera shake from pushing the shutter button.

Also take into account your aperture settings. If you set the aperture as low as it can go (example: F/3.5 or F/2.8) you'll allow more light to get in, but at a cost of depth of field in the photo. The lower the number, the wider the hole in the lens becomes to allow light to the sensor.

I have a lens with a max aperture of F/1.4 and it has extremely thin DOF, but it allows in mad amounts of light.. It also makes my laser appear horribly uncollimated.. lol!

Example photos:

3aa6eb8c.jpg



Thin depth of field

2c216841.jpg



Thick depth of field

85b6161c.jpg
 

Bionic-Badger

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High-ISO is useful when you need to get a shot off in lower-light conditions and need the light sensitivity at the expense of noise.  However, this is not the case with long exposures, where you already assume the subject of the photo is not moving, and can get away with lower sensitivity, as time is not at a premium.  

Long exposure times means >= 1 second exposure time.  Anything else would be more in the realm of regular photo exposure times, where high- or auto- ISO enables you to capture objects in relatively low light.

You can get lenses like what Napalm Fire is using for (D)SLRs for about $100.  They're 50mm F/1.4 lenses, and they do allow for a lot of light.  Everyone should have or buy one for their SLR camera as they're so cheap but very fast lenses.
 

Napalm_Fire

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50mm F/1.4 would cost more around $400-550.. lol.. You can get a 50mm F/1.8 for Canon EF mount for $85. F/1.4 is a bit more expensive.
 

Ace82

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Just mess around with your camera’s settings, turn the flash off, and set it for long exposure, but you also need to hold the camera very still while doing this. I suggest using a tripod, and/or use the timer function to avoid shaking from your hand. I love to use incense for beam shots because they define them allot without all the distortion of moister from fog. Plus, beamshots sometimes (depending on the angle) are more define if you take it when the beam is aimed toward the camera, and not away. Just be careful with your eyes if your using high powered lasers, and watch out for your camera, or you’ll have permanent pixel damage!
 

GooeyGus

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Ace82 said:
and watch out for your camera, or you’ll have permanent pixel damage!

Everyone knows that this is just urban legend  :-X :-X :-X

Just ask my cell phone camera...  ;D
 

Bionic-Badger

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Napalm_Fire said:
50mm F/1.4 would cost more around $400-550.. lol.. You can get a 50mm F/1.8 for Canon EF mount for $85. F/1.4 is a bit more expensive.

Oh you're right, I was thinking of the F/1.8.
 




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