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      05-03-2012, 07:07 PM   #1

Drives: 08 E90, 89 Grand Wagoneer
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: So Cal

iTrader: (3)

High speed photo question

Specifically, I am trying to shoot some rings and other heavy, small items in water using strobes.

The problem I am encountering is that once the item is dropped, it's blurred from the speed of decent.

Question: Is it possible to capture a crisp, clear image given the nature of the objects? Or is it only bouyant objects that photograph well because they sort of "stop" once they hit the water long enough to be photographed clearly?


Example 1. A .40 mm cartridge dropped into the water tank with manual settings at: shutter-160 f/14. Lens is my 100mm f/2.8 mounted to my 50D. The strobes are about half power (I've tried lowest power and highest power... all the same thing) I've tinkered with the shutter speed but it's not really the camera stopping the action, it's the strobes and besides, the shutter starts to creep into the shot at 200 or higher.

Notice the shell is blurred as it's on it's way down gaining speed as it goes.

These two shots are only a comparison between two different lens's AND using an object that floats demonstrating that it stops it's decent right as I click the shutter and viola... in focus. Both are unretouched photos straight out of the camera except for resizing. The first shot is my 100mm f/2.8 shot at f/14 with shutter @ 160:

The next shot is with my 17-85mm f/4-5.6 attached. It's focal length set at 50mm and the same f stop and shutter speed apply:

I was just interested in seeing what the difference was as far as clarity goes. As you can see, not much. Strobes kind of even things out in that regard.

A shot of the setup:
Simple setup
-1 small soft box
-1 barn door w/ grid
-camera with tripod
-small aquarium with about 1/2 water
-stand holding a black board behind aquarium (or white, whichever)

Any help is appreciated!