How to Have Groovy Photos with the Nikon D3400
The Nikon D3400 is a great entry-level camera with plenty of features that permit you lot to hone your photography skills without a lot of fuss.
Other than the addition of SnapBridge for easy wireless transfer and almost double the battery life, the D3400 is very similar to its predecessor, the D3300. Here’s a quick guide to some of the basics as well as a couple of more than avant-garde features to explore. (You tin can as well read near some of the basics hither.)
Before nosotros get into the specifics, here are some Quick Tips to become you lot started.
- Ever check your settings before heading out to have pictures. The sunny-day settings you used yesterday won’t work well for tonight’s depression light conditions.
- Use a special brush similar the Lens Pen or a lens material to make certain the lens is dust-gratis.
- If you’re going to be shooting in a quiet venue (a museum, at a nuptials, etc.), go into the setup menu and turn off the beep that indicates when the epitome is in focus.
- In the setup menu, brand sure Slot empty-release lock is ready to Lock so you don’t have pictures when you don’t accept an SD card in the photographic camera.
- Always check your shutter speed, regardless of what exposure mode you’re in, to make sure it’s fast enough to handhold and avert blurry pictures. I tend to aim for at least ane/125th sec when possible, merely others take a steadier hand and tin easily shoot at slower shutter speeds.
The Mode Punch
The Manner Punch is the most of import control on the D3400. From here, you cull the photographic camera’south exposure manner. Non only does your selection affect the way in which the camera exposes the epitome simply also what other controls you have access to. Near automatic exposure modes (such every bit Auto, Auto Flash Off, Mural, Portrait) have express access to advanced options such as white balance, while manual and semi-manual exposure modes (such as shutter priority), offer total access to all features.
Let’s starting time with the options (PSAM) that put the most control in your hands.
P = Programme Car.
The camera chooses the shutter speed and aperture setting merely you can alter other parameters such as exposure compensation (to make the image lighter or darker). This is a expert mode to start your exploration of the camera’s features.
S = Shutter Priority.
Yous choose the shutter speed; the camera selects the appropriate aperture setting for what the camera considers a good exposure. This is the best option when you want to freeze action (fast shutter speed —1/200th sec or faster) or mistiness a moving discipline like a waterfall (ane/60th sec or slower). Chiefly, the fastest shutter speed commanded when using the built-in flash or an external flash is i/200 sec; this allows the flash and shutter to sync properly.
A = Aperture Priority.
You choose the aperture (f-finish) setting; the photographic camera selects the appropriate shutter speed for what the camera considers a good exposure. The discontinuity controls depth-of-field or how much of the picture — from near to far — appears in focus. A college f-end number, such equally f/11, lets in less low-cal but increases depth-of-field — the amount of the frame that’south in focus. A smaller number, such as f/ii.8, does just the opposite.
Thousand = Manual.
You have full control over both shutter speed and aperture settings. Conform one or both settings until the exposure gauge mark is in the middle.
Cull the Guide mode, press the Menu push button to become help with any yous desire to achieve. There are four options for different tasks: Shoot, View/delete, Retouch and Gear up. Each section offers detailed instructions on how to accomplish a task manually or, in some cases, the photographic camera automatically chooses the all-time settings for capturing a specific scene with a note nearly the specific setting(s) it’s using. It’s a solid learning tool for beginners.
The D3400 offers a half dozen scene modes, indicated past icons on the Mode Dial. Choose one that matches the type of photo you’re taking (Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close Up and Night Portrait) and the camera chooses all aspects of the image settings.
Auto/Motorcar Flash Off.
The camera chooses what it considers the best settings for the scene; you have control over few advanced options.
If yous desire to get creative (or a lilliputian funky), check out the camera’south ten special effects, such as Super Vivid, Photograph Analogy and more.
Other important controls mentioned in this guide:
Info button, which allows you to access and adjust about-often-used settings without going into the Carte organization.
Lv (Live View) button; flips upward the mirror so yous tin can view the scene via the LCD. Also used for capturing video.
Release mode push. Here’due south where you access self-timer and remote options, forth with setting single or continuous shooting modes.
Now that you take some basic information about the photographic camera, here are some tips on how to capture great images.
How to I have a selfie or group portrait?
When there’south no one effectually to operate the camera only you, the cocky-timer lets yous go far the shot, whether you’re by yourself or with a group of friends. Set the discontinuity to f/five.six or smaller (college f-stop number) to brand sure at that place’southward plenty depth-of-field to keep everyone in focus. If you’re shooting an action scene, make sure the shutter speed is fast plenty to freeze move (one/200 or faster). Go to Menu > Fix and set the self-timer to a delay of 10 or 20 seconds; choose the number of shots you want to take (from one-9, with a filibuster of about 4 seconds in between). Focus manually, press the Release Mode push, cull self-timer, press the shutter push and become prepare for your portrait. The photographic camera will beep to let you know each time it’due south most to take a motion-picture show.
MORE: 12 Tips For Taking Stunning Portrait Photos
How do I have a picture indoors without flash?
The short answer is set up the Manner Dial to Auto Wink Off. For better results, brand sure the flash is closed and use P, S, A or M exposure modes; otherwise, the flash may automatically pop up and fire if the camera feels there’s non enough low-cal. In the Shooting Menu, plough the Machine ISO sensitivity control to Off and adjust the ISO (printing the Info push button) until you go the shutter speed/aperture combination you desire. If the colors look strange, alter the white balance to the dominant type of light (regular indoor light bulbs are unremarkably tungsten). If you’re shooting nether fluorescent lighting, go to Menu > Setup > Flicker Reduction and brand certain information technology’s ready to Auto to counteract the flickering of lights.
More than: five Tips For Taking Better Low-Light Photos
What are the all-time settings for photographing a landscape or cityscape?
Set the Manner Dial to A (aperture priority) and choose a pocket-sized aperture (high number) f-stop like f/5.half-dozen or, preferably, higher to go a broad depth-of-field. Zoom your lens to its widest angle (or wide plenty to reach the limerick yous want). As ever, make sure your shutter speed is fast enough to hold the photographic camera in your easily without blurring the paradigm, or place the photographic camera on a tripod.
For a slightly different approach when shooting a cityscape, apply less depth-of-field (prepare a smaller f-stop number, like f/4.9 or 2.8) to emphasize a particular edifice while throwing the environment a petty out of focus.
More: 12 Tips for Taking Amazing Mural Photos
How exercise I freeze action?
Set the Manner Dial to S for shutter priority. Depending on the speed of the movement, set the shutter to 1/200 sec or higher. Press the Release Mode push button (on the right under the 4-manner controller) and choose Continuous shooting. Then set the focus mode (use the Info button to access the bill of fare) to AF-C (continuous autofocus). Continue the shutter half-pressed to appoint continuous AF, anticipate the subject’s moves and when yous’re set, starting time shooting — keeping the shutter button pressed fully.
How do I shoot video?
Prepare the Way Punch to S (shutter priority), Press the Lv (Live View) button to turn on the live monitor. Press the Info button and select a moving-picture show frame size and quality. For full Hd, choose one of the 1920 x 1080 high-quality options. I prefer the 24p (24 frames per 2nd) selection for a more cinematic look merely feel free to experiment with other frame rates.
The primal here is to set your shutter speed at twice the fps charge per unit. If you cull 24p, set up your shutter to 1/50th sec; for 60p, the ideal shutter speed is 1/120th sec, and and then on. By setting the shutter speed to double the frame charge per unit, the camera will capture smoother video. When you’re ready to start, press the cherry-red movie record button near the shutter button.
How exercise I edit my pictures without a computer?
The Nikon D3400 has some great Retouch options that permit you to edit and process images right in the camera. If y’all want to shoot RAW images, the Retouch menu has a special RAW processing option so you tin can apply your ain adjustments without the hassle of using software on your computer.
If yous decide, after the fact, that y’all desire to apply artistic effects to images, check out the Retouch bill of fare’due south special-furnishings options and salvage them as copies so y’all can keep your originals as well.
How can I transfer my images from the photographic camera to my smartphone?
Although the Nikon D3400 doesn’t have Wi-Fi, you tin can use Bluetooth and Nikon’s free SnapBridge app to connect the camera to your mobile devices. The process is pretty cocky-explanatory and the app has a congenital-in tutorial if you see whatever issues, but hither are the basics.
First, download the SnapBridge app to your Android or iOS device. On the camera, go to Menu>Setup>Connect to smart device and follow the instructions on the screen. Open the SnapBridge app, printing the plus sign and select the D3400. From there you can choose several options, including machine downloading all your images to your mobile device equally you shoot them (and finish the task when the camera is powered downwards, if y’all similar). You tin can’t transfer movies or RAW files, just you can select whether to send a full-size JPEG or a smaller 2-megapixel version.
Sample Photos Credit: Theano Nikitas/Tom’s Guide. D3400 Images Credit: Nikon