The weekly newsletter on the art of photography from
Monday, October 11, 2010
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Updates From BetterPhoto
Q&A 1: SB-800 Speedlight...
Q&A 2: Upgrade Camera or...

"I am so sorry this course is over! I learned soooo very much. Lynne's lessons were easy to understand, and her critiques were very informative, helpful, supportive, and encouraging." -Lisa D. Buchanan in Learning to Shoot Inspiring Images with Lynne Eodice



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For Better Photos, Revisit Favorite Locations!
BetterPhoto instructor Deborah Sandidge likes to revisit old locations, and see how she can interpret a familiar subject in a new and innovative way. Read more about revisiting favorite photo spots...

Featured Gallery
Norfolk Pine
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Welcome to the 494th issue of SnapShot!

Paul Gero is a master at wedding and documentary photography, and best yet, he teaches for BetterPhoto's online photography school. In a fascinating pro photographer interview with Jim Miotke, Paul shares his experiences, his insights, and his secrets to beomcing a creative photographer. ... If you have a few minutes, be sure to drop by the Team BetterPhoto blog. There, you can check out the thoughts, interests, and tips from BetterPhoto team members. ... In this issue of SnapShot, don't miss Rob Sheppard's review of Adobe's new Photoshop Elements 9 and Deborah Sandidge's Photo Tip on revisiting past locations. ... That's it for now. Have fun with your photography!    Kerry Drager   Newsletter Editor    Where is Jim Miotke? Follow BetterPhoto's founder and president on Twitter - BetterPhotoJim - and in his blog:

Jim Miotke
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Updates From BetterPhoto

"There is now very little that Photoshop Elements 9 cannot do compared to Photoshop, at least for photographers, and it is in a more photographer-friendly interface," reports BetterPhoto instructor Rob Sheppard. "And at a price of under $100, it is a terrific value (especially compared to Photoshop!)." Read Rob's complete photography review of Elements 9... There are many awesome reasons to jump into a BetterPhoto online course. Read our Top Ten list of reasons why you should take an online class...

Photo Q&A

1: SB-800 Speedlight Trouble
OK, weird/scary. Last night, after using my Nikon SB-800 on a stroboframe above my camera, it emitted a short series or really fast flashes, like a strobe light. What was that? Never had that happen before. Today, it did the same thing. Last night, I had it on full power, today at -1. Am I in danger of frying it!!??
- Tara R. Swartzendruber
I haven't had that response, but my flash wasn't operating correctly while on a stroboframe, so I placed a strip of electrical tape on the stroboframe to keep the flash contacts from contacting the metal on the stroboframe. If your stroboframe is metal, I would try that.
- Randy  A. Myers
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2: Upgrade Camera or Buy a New Lens?
Hello! I currently have a Nikon D80 and was wondering if I would be better off investing in a high-quality lens or upgrading my camera and using my mid-quality lenses. Which is more important? I mainly shoot sports and dog/pets. Thank you in advance!
- Angie M. Murdock
This is not an easy question to answer. Lenses are very important for achieving quality images and you didn't specify which lenses you had. If they are truly mid-quality, then I would have to advise to upgrade the camera body. Here are my reasons. A newer and upgraded body will get you a better AF system with more cross type sensors to assist in achieving better and faster focus. That is very important in shooting sports. You will also be getting a more sophisicated metering system. The most important thing you would be getting with a newer upgraded body would be better dynamic range and lower noise resulting in the ability to use higher ISO. The higher ISO lets you increase the shutter speed and will help you attain sharper sports images. This is the main reason to upgrade the camera body. It also lets you get by without having large, heavy, fast lenses. Hope these thoughts help. Good luck on your decision.
- Randy  A. Myers
Thank you so much for all your information. It is truly a big help. My lenses are as follows: Nikon 50mm 1.8, Nikon 18-135mm 3.5, Sigma 28-70mm 2.8 and a Nikon 70-300mm 4
- Angie M. Murdock
You have a nice range of focal lengths. The one lens I would recommend would be the 70-200 2.8VR. If that is more than you want to spend, the 80-200 2.8 can be had for 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of the 70-200 VR. It is still a fantastic lens. I have the 80-400 VR and would not recommend it for sports or action. It is too slow to focus for fast action. I think you need to consider the Nikon D7000 that was just announced. The specifications are very nice as well as the projected price. I wouldn't upgrade bodies to anything less than the D7000 or the D300. Anything less would be a waste of money in my opinion. Good luck!
- Randy  A. Myers
I wrestled with this exact question awhile ago. For what it's worth, I upgraded from the D80 to the D700 and love it. I bought a Nikkor 24-70 to go with it, and would like the 70-200, but that's later... I think it takes much sharper photos (of course, that is likely the lens), a richer color, and I can go higher with the IS0 without significant noise than I could on the D80.
- Tara R. Swartzendruber
Thanks, Tara. I have heard the D700 is a very nice camera. I'm weighing all my options with all the great advice I have been given. I'm quite interested in the D7000 that's coming out as mentioned by Randy. Oh, decisions, decisions! Thank you both!
- Angie M. Murdock
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