Video shooting at night has always been more of a challenge than shooting in broad daylight. Although DSLR cameras are designed to shoot still images better at nighttime, some videographers and video editors have a difficulty finding the right settings to achieve the best nighttime shots.
In this article post, we will give teach you how to configure the right camera settings and video shooting techniques to get the best low-light and nighttime shot conditions.
#1. Add More Light Whenever Possible
This may seem counter-intuitive, but adding lights to your studio will dramatically ease your hurdle in shooting during nighttime and low light conditions.
We recommend you use lighting tools like Micro Pro LED from Litepanels to get the perfect lighting for your shots. If you don’t have access to these tools, you can use your lamps, overhead lights, reflector panel, or a piece of mirror.
Be resourceful whenever you can. But, of course, we still recommend you invest in purchasing a lighting kit for your video shooting projects.
#2. Adjust Your Aperture Settings
If you don’t know what aperture is, it is also known as an f-stop, or iris. Most videographers used them interchangeably.
If your camera has an f-stop setting, you need to lower its number as much as you can. F-stop at 1.4 is the recommended one. The lower your f-stop is the bigger your aperture. More light will pass through, enabling you to capture a brighter image.
If your camera uses a zoom lens, keep it at a wide angle where your aperture can stay wide open. Don’t zoom in or zoom out frequently, as that will degrade the quality of the image you’re capturing. Instead, walk closer to the subject.
#3. Reduce Your Shutter Speed
Most DSLR and video cameras let you control your shutter speed. Reducing your shutter speed allows more light passing through your camera.
The recommended shutter speed is between 1/30th – 1/60th of a second. Since your shutter is open for a longer period of time, it doubles up the amount of light that passed through your camera, enabling you to capture brighter images.
#4. Reducing Your DSLR’s Frame Rate
High quality DSLR and video cameras offer this feature, where you can manually set your frame rate up to 24 frames per second, instead of its standard configuration.
A simpler way of configuring this is by turning off your shutter. It will achieve the same result of capturing the frame for 1/24th a second.
#5. Increasing DSLR Camera Gain
It is also called “ISO” or “sensitivity”. You can adjust the sensitivity of your camera no higher than ISO 1600.
Important Note: Only apply this method only if you’ve tried ALL the tips given here. You need to be very careful with adjusting ISO as it does the most damage to your image.
#6. Reduce the Noise in Your Camera
One of the downsides of increasing your ISO is it adds more noise in your image. If this happens, you can buy a noise reduction plugin to reduce the noise. The good thing is, this feature is most common to be found in popular NLE software like Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere Pro, and Da Vinci Resolve.
Shooting or Editing your Videos Professionally
Whether you’re a videographer or photographer, capturing and editing your videos in order to achieve the breathtaking sceneries you wanted can be a daunting process. But it’s not impossible to do that. You always have the option to hire the best video editors to capture and edit your videos professionally.