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Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 6:44 AM Reply   
So I just got my Canon 40D the other day and I love it! I'm so excited to start using it. Meanwhile, I have been playing around with it at home but I am having a few problems. I have just had it on the full auto mode just messing around. Of course since I am inside the flash will pop up, but when I push the button to take the picture, the flash will go crazy and it will say busy and it won't always take the picture. Last night, I set it to night scene and went outside and it wouldn't take any pictures at all, but the flash would go crazy. Am I doing something wrong? I can't figure out what is going on. I have read the manual for both the lens and the camera and I can't find an answer. Can someone please help, I am becoming very frustrated!
Old    J Jakober (jjakober)      Join Date: Apr 2002       01-23-2009, 7:34 AM Reply   
If the camera doesn't get focus lock on something it won't release the shutter. The flash is "going crazy" to try and help the camera see in the dark. There are settings to control this behavior.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 7:57 AM Reply   
I thought it might be not having something to focus on, but there are objects that I was trying to take a picture of that it should have focused on. What settings would fix this?
Old    Rob VLX (skull)      Join Date: May 2002       01-23-2009, 8:10 AM Reply   
Huh? See if red eye reduction is ON. If so, turn it off. Then, I'd take it off auto mode... put it on Tv and see how it behaves. You can turn the flash on and off using the lightning bolt. What lens? I don't know that camera so I am sure others can help more.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 8:13 AM Reply   
The red eye reduction is off. I forgot to mention that on the screen when the flash goes crazy it says BUSY. I thought it would only do that if you were too close to the subject. I am using the 28-135mm lens.
Old    J Jakober (jjakober)      Join Date: Apr 2002       01-23-2009, 8:49 AM Reply   
I'm not a canon shooter, but the easiest way to test this is to set the camera to manual focus and then hit the shutter button. The camera should take a picture in this mode whether it has focus lock or not.

There are plenty of Canon shooters on here that can give you the details for your camera, but I'm sure it's all in the manual
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-23-2009, 8:58 AM Reply   
You hit it on the head, it's the AF assist strobing the flash trying to get AF lock.

Put that thing in one of the manual exposure modes and pop up/use the flash, it will adjust automatically as either fill or BG flash.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 9:27 AM Reply   
The only thing is though, the focus confirmation light comes on. My other point is though, shooting at night, using the night scene setting shouldn't do this, right?
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-23-2009, 9:32 AM Reply   
Sorry I'm not sure what that night setting does and what it controls - best to check the manual.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 9:38 AM Reply   
I looked all over the manual and I can't figure it out. When it talks about night scene it says just to keep the object within 16 feet and use wide angle. I might try a different lens and see how it behaves. I'm just frustrated right now, because I have done a lot of research and can't figure it out. Is it the lens or the camera?
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 9:39 AM Reply   
My friend has the 50D and he has the same lens and we were shooting around a campfire one night with no problems. His flash never said busy and it took the picture first try.
Old    RileyBangerter (steezyshots)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-23-2009, 9:40 AM Reply   
Start to shoot outside of the auto mode and learn your settings through trial and error. There is a bit of a learning curve but you will figure it out. And your picture will show their appreciation by becoming better and better with time behind the lens.
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-23-2009, 10:00 AM Reply   
"My friend has the 50D and he has the same lens and we were shooting around a campfire one night with no problems. His flash never said busy and it took the picture first try."

My first thought - same exact camera settings?

All cameras have a lower sensitivity limit that governs the AF perhaps the 50D's is a bit more sensitive?

Next time try the P mode, that will try to set the cam at 1/60th, f4 and ISO 400 and power the flash accordingly.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 10:07 AM Reply   
I will mess with it tonight. Thanks for your help Rich. If anyone else might have suggestions I am open to them at this point!
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 10:34 AM Reply   
I was doing some reading, has anyone ever heard of the CF card causing problems with their flash? I have the Lexar 4GB card and I'm wondering if that might be the problem. The camera does take pictures with the flash, just not in low light settings, could it be the CF card?

(Message edited by wakechic82 on January 23, 2009)
Old    RileyBangerter (steezyshots)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-23-2009, 10:47 AM Reply   
no
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 11:56 AM Reply   
Could it be because my battery was low? Very low? It's on the charger right now.
Old    Randy Scagliotti (wakedad33)      Join Date: Oct 2005       01-23-2009, 1:09 PM Reply   
I would try what Rich recommended with the P mode. When I first got my 40 I was having all kinds of problems shooting at night, all operator error, the more you shoot with it the more you will figure it out. Congtats on choosing the 40, good call. I found a book on Amazon dedicated to the 40-D that I got for like $19.00 that has been a great help, easy to read and understand with great illustrations, it's helped a lot.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 1:18 PM Reply   
What's the book called? I am going to try all that when I get home tonight. I know it's all operator error, but it is frustrating. I just found it odd how it wouldn't shoot at night on the night scene setting. I will keep you posted.
Old    RileyBangerter (steezyshots)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-23-2009, 1:24 PM Reply   
With the stock flash there is no infrared light that lights up to help focus. When you step up to buying a speedlight they have an infrared light that will light up instead of the flash bursting to light up the space to focus.

Welcome to photography the never anding money pit!
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 1:43 PM Reply   
The thing that blows my mind is that the green light through the eyepiece lights up which indicates that it is focused. Oh well, I will just have to take everyone's advice and try to set the manual settings tonight.
Old    RileyBangerter (steezyshots)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-23-2009, 2:16 PM Reply   
Yeah for inside shooting I will "usually" shoot manual focus, ISO 400, Shutter between 1/80 to 1/160 depending on lighting. Play with that and see what you get.

If your shots are to bright and washed out step up the shutter speed, and if they are to dark either slow down the shutter or bump up the ISO.
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-23-2009, 3:59 PM Reply   
Or dial in some positive or negative FEC (flash exposure compensation)

Negative FEC is the best way get get rid of harsh flash highlites in my experience.
Old    Randy Scagliotti (wakedad33)      Join Date: Oct 2005       01-23-2009, 5:27 PM Reply   
Wakechic, here is the book I mentioned, helped me a lot for less then $20.00. I would recommend it. Get this and you won't ever look at your Canon manuel again.

Upload

Upload
Old    David (dhorton)      Join Date: Apr 2002       01-23-2009, 5:40 PM Reply   
Hey Wakechic I found this DVD very informative and easy to understand.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/533062-REG/Blue_Crane_Digital_BC114_DVD_Introduction_to_the.h tml#features
I found it on eBay for 17 bucks with free shipping. Popped it into the dvd player had my camera in hand and by the end of the dvd had a much better understanding of basic photography as well as much better understanding of navigating the almost overwhelming (for a novice) menu of the 40d.
Old    Wakechic82 (wakechic82)      Join Date: Jun 2007       01-23-2009, 6:47 PM Reply   
Ok, so I am a pretty open person who can admit mistakes, and well, I am really sorry for wasting everyone's time! I'm pretty much an idiot and I had a blonde moment (I'm brunette by the way). When I was shooting outside or in a low lighting setting, instead of pushing the button down part way to focus, I was just pushing it down all the way and holding it which apparently pisses off the camera when you do that :-) I'm really not an idiot and I have worked with an SLR many of times (just not at night). Thank you Randy for the book suggestion, I am definently going to look into that. I am also taking my second photography class in March. So, once again, I'm sorry for everyone who wasted their time trying to help me with this, obviously it was operator error! I look forward to posting some of my pictures soon too. I really enjoy looking at everyones and hearing advice.
Old    Evil0ne (evil0ne)      Join Date: Sep 2006       01-24-2009, 5:22 PM Reply   
I second the video.
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-25-2009, 8:05 AM Reply   
You can shift AF to the * button on the back which a lot of people like. It works way better with focus and recompose then leaving it on the shutter release. It's in the custom functions. If you try it leave exposure lock on the shutter.

The idea above is that most people prefer AF on the center point only (it's the fastest and most accurate) but most of the time the subject you want to AF on won't be in the center of the frame.

By shifting AF to the * one can focus using CP, shift the cam to reframe and then get accurate exposure lock when the shutter is depressed in the proper framing.

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