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#1 jo1369

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Posted 03 December 2008 - 07:03 PM


I am a newbie to this but have always been interested. I am going out with a group in a month and was just wondering what would be the most reasonably priced camera I can get that is good for pictures in the DARK. I am looking for digital,something not to hard and that takes reasonable pics in the dark. I have a 35 mm that I would use and I have 2 digitals, but don't know if they are good for this. One is a Casio EX Z60 and a Kodak D8612 IS ( which can be adjusted with the ISO and Shutter speed. So, is one of these ok or is there something easier. Any help would be really appreciated. :P

Edited by aloha_spirit, 04 December 2008 - 12:38 AM.

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#2 Pfled

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 08:05 AM

Jo1369,

I would go with what you have. You can always adjust the ISO and shutter speed to your liking. I typically use the max shutter speed I have in my Canon and it works pretty well. My only suggestion, nay insistence, is that you bring a tripod. Playing with the shutter speed can really screw up pictures if you are not perfectly still. I had a whole investigation ruined because I left my tripod at home.
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#3 CaveRat2

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 10:50 AM

Use what you have with the following caveat.... No digital picture will ever be considered valid evidence simply because the state of digital manipulation possible on today's computers allows anyone the ability to fake a picture that with minimal experience cannot be detected by any expert. Thus anyone could hoax anything. I'm not saying you would, that is just the state of things today, no digital picture, no matter how good will ever in and of itself be considerd valid evidence.

Pictures taken with a 35 mm camera AND having a negative available for study are still marginally acceptable as evidence because they are much harder to fake. Although even that is becoming questionable in some circles these days. Pictures are good supporting evidence, but unless there is something else to also verify the event they will always be called into question.

Also keep good records of every picture. Not just the picture, but environmental conditions at the time, temperature, humidity, barometer, who was present, and above all why you took the picture at that particular place and time. all will help you give anything you capture some measure of credibility.

#4 OMPRDave

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 05:41 PM

I've had this idea now for some time, and will have to implement it on an upcoming investigation:

All SD cards for the ca,eras used should go through a "chain of command" of sorts, making sure they are free of images before the trip and then turned in at the end of the trip. They should be sealed in the camera with two pieces of tape, with a signature that crosses both pieces so it can't be taken out during, and then again sealed when they are recovered before analysis. As caverat stated it's far to easy to hoax nowadays, so keep some semblance of order this will provide a total chain of command that could allow for skeptical viewers to take how they were taken and handled more seriously.

Also, instead of using a pc, I am debating getting a digital photo frame. There is no editing software, and if a picture truly has something unknown in it this would eliminate any editing. I am a firm believer that if something has to be enhanced at all, let a third party do it who has nothing to gain with the photo. That way also, you retain teh original with the exif data uncorrupted.

If anyone has any other ideas about this, please bring them up.
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#5 jo1369

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 07:04 PM

I've had this idea now for some time, and will have to implement it on an upcoming investigation:

All SD cards for the ca,eras used should go through a "chain of command" of sorts, making sure they are free of images before the trip and then turned in at the end of the trip. They should be sealed in the camera with two pieces of tape, with a signature that crosses both pieces so it can't be taken out during, and then again sealed when they are recovered before analysis. As caverat stated it's far to easy to hoax nowadays, so keep some semblance of order this will provide a total chain of command that could allow for skeptical viewers to take how they were taken and handled more seriously.

Also, instead of using a pc, I am debating getting a digital photo frame. There is no editing software, and if a picture truly has something unknown in it this would eliminate any editing. I am a firm believer that if something has to be enhanced at all, let a third party do it who has nothing to gain with the photo. That way also, you retain teh original with the exif data uncorrupted.

If anyone has any other ideas about this, please bring them up.

Thank you, I appreciate your response very much


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#6 jo1369

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 07:05 PM

Jo1369,

I would go with what you have. You can always adjust the ISO and shutter speed to your liking. I typically use the max shutter speed I have in my Canon and it works pretty well. My only suggestion, nay insistence, is that you bring a tripod. Playing with the shutter speed can really screw up pictures if you are not perfectly still. I had a whole investigation ruined because I left my tripod at home.



Thank you for responding
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#7 jo1369

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Posted 06 December 2008 - 07:06 PM

Use what you have with the following caveat.... No digital picture will ever be considered valid evidence simply because the state of digital manipulation possible on today's computers allows anyone the ability to fake a picture that with minimal experience cannot be detected by any expert. Thus anyone could hoax anything. I'm not saying you would, that is just the state of things today, no digital picture, no matter how good will ever in and of itself be considerd valid evidence.

Pictures taken with a 35 mm camera AND having a negative available for study are still marginally acceptable as evidence because they are much harder to fake. Although even that is becoming questionable in some circles these days. Pictures are good supporting evidence, but unless there is something else to also verify the event they will always be called into question.

Also keep good records of every picture. Not just the picture, but environmental conditions at the time, temperature, humidity, barometer, who was present, and above all why you took the picture at that particular place and time. all will help you give anything you capture some measure of credibility.



Thank you for responding
If they can't take a joke...F#%& Em

#8 JimDe

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Posted 07 December 2008 - 01:58 AM

Iíll offer up two pieces of advice;
1. You should be careful who you take advice from.
2. Digital Rules.

Edited by JimDe, 07 December 2008 - 02:01 AM.

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#9 Old Guy

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Posted 07 December 2008 - 11:40 AM

When you shoot, shoot with the highest resolution the camera allows. Preferebly RAW. Meaning *NO* compression. (You do that on the pc.) Why? If you or anyone else wants to examine a shot "a little closer", all of the original informatiion/data is still contained in the (HUGE) file. Otherwise, when you go to blow it up, it won't end up looking like Spongeblob.
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#10 aloha_spirit

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 10:57 PM

Another suggestion is to either wipe your storage media with all 0s before each investigation or use fresh media each time. You don't want digital remnants to show up as ghosts;)

I didn't lose my mind - I have it backed up on a disk ... somewhere


#11 Deianera

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Posted 16 December 2008 - 03:04 PM

I'd like to add that any analog negative can be digitized these days- a Hasselblad Imacon does the best job- then altered-and new negatives produced from the result. I know it's hard to maintain credibility with such a controversial type of subject matter, but the truth is that ANYTHING can be faked. Experts can always tell. Also, in my experience, I've had far better luck capturing orbs & the like on digital. Just be sure, whichever type of camera you decide to use, that an orb or the like isn't really lens flare. -Deianera

#12 CaveRat2

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Posted 16 December 2008 - 05:53 PM

I'd like to add that any analog negative can be digitized these days- a Hasselblad Imacon does the best job- then altered-and new negatives produced from the result. I know it's hard to maintain credibility with such a controversial type of subject matter, but the truth is that ANYTHING can be faked. Experts can always tell. Also, in my experience, I've had far better luck capturing orbs & the like on digital. Just be sure, whichever type of camera you decide to use, that an orb or the like isn't really lens flare. -Deianera


While I may sem to be down on digital and supporting only film cameras, you are quite right, even 35 mm film can be faked. Just not as readily as digital. Any one of us with a computer has everything we need to fake a digital picture if we wanted, and with a little practice we could do it at a level that an expert couldn't detect it.

When I see you mention Hasselblad, it is evident what level you need to do this and produce a negative; the camera back refered to carries a price tag of over $9,000. Now if anyone really wants to spend that kind of money to fake a ghost picture, I guess we'll have to get out of their way and let them. They might even get away with it. So as I said, it's not impossible to create a fake negative, just much harder for the average hoaxster to do it.

#13 GPPI_JMe

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Posted 16 December 2008 - 08:08 PM

So a lot of what it comes down to is, how involved are you planning on getting in your investigations? If you are planning on going out to try and find and supply the ultimate proof, film might definitely be your avenue of choice. If you're just looking for a camera that takes decent pictures in the dark, and don't mind some criticisms about your findings, a decent digital camera should be fine.

I would agree with some of the previous posts on using what you already have. Give those cameras each a try, and see how you like them. Also, as previously posted, use a tripod. They work wonders when adjusting your camera to photograph better in the dark. Once you've gotten some practice using your cameras, then you'll know whether they work for what you need, and also if you're even interested enough to drop more money on equipment.

I will say this - I use a Canon Powershot. It's a six mega pixel, digital camera. I feel it takes good pictures in the dark, so long as you have a steady hand. These are usually flash pictures, so a tripod isn't usually necessary, but certainly does not hurt. My goal is primarily to document the surroundings in the area, though, not to "catch" something. Best of luck to you in whatever you decide to do - and keep us posted! We'd love to know more about what you catch, questions you have about your pictures, or even features of cameras you're looking into! ;)
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#14 Deianera

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Posted 19 December 2008 - 03:41 PM

I'd like to add that any analog negative can be digitized these days- a Hasselblad Imacon does the best job- then altered-and new negatives produced from the result. I know it's hard to maintain credibility with such a controversial type of subject matter, but the truth is that ANYTHING can be faked. Experts can always tell. Also, in my experience, I've had far better luck capturing orbs & the like on digital. Just be sure, whichever type of camera you decide to use, that an orb or the like isn't really lens flare. -Deianera


While I may sem to be down on digital and supporting only film cameras, you are quite right, even 35 mm film can be faked. Just not as readily as digital. Any one of us with a computer has everything we need to fake a digital picture if we wanted, and with a little practice we could do it at a level that an expert couldn't detect it.

When I see you mention Hasselblad, it is evident what level you need to do this and produce a negative; the camera back refered to carries a price tag of over $9,000. Now if anyone really wants to spend that kind of money to fake a ghost picture, I guess we'll have to get out of their way and let them. They might even get away with it. So as I said, it's not impossible to create a fake negative, just much harder for the average hoaxster to do it.



Thanks for your input, CaveRat- the Imacon does one thing perfectly: it digitizes negatives. It should- it costs $17,000.00! The Mac desktop computer required to run it costs an extra $3000.00. I'm fortunate to be attending a university that can afford one. My camera is a Canon EOS40D SLR, but I've been digitizing old 35mm negatives to create photomontages for my classes. I'm more concerned at this point with how easily "evidence" could be faked in court & other legal matters with sophisticated photography- it has a lot of potential to ruin peoples' lives. I agree that such trouble & expense is pretty far to go in order to fake paranormal events- but even in the event of a perfect "capture", as it were, of a spirit or other supernatural occurrence, there's still no accounting for what people will think of it. Faith has to be there- a willingness to believe that the paranormal is possible. With all of the sophisticated media that everyone gets exposed to these days, it's no wonder that a potential audience can be quite cynical. I'm wishing good luck to us all- I know that paranormal investigators work very hard to maintain credibility; I've accompanied Brad Rubin of Cincinnati on an investigation of Bobby Mackey's country-western roadhouse, & he's extremely careful to gather & process his evidence in the most scientific way possible. I'm a photojournalist & documentary film maker specializing in paranormal events, & it's always quite an adventure!

#15 peepers

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Posted 27 December 2008 - 01:56 PM

Iíll offer up two pieces of advice;
1. You should be careful who you take advice from.
2. Digital Rules.


Digital RULES..... :ghost:

The Nikon D60 DSLR is a great peice of equipment.... it has a built in image sensor cleaning function which eliminates the "dust orb" and other non-paranormal distractions ......
Yes.... I've gone behind the camera"s"..... as well as recording audio........ Love....Breed peace.....




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