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4.2 Rating
Photograph the Classic Holiday Light Bokeh Effect

Tips for shooting lights as soft globes of color

Beginner

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4.2 Rating
51-Point Autofocus System

The 51-point AF system positions 51 points of focus within the frame to allow photographers to…

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4.3 Rating
Benefits of Using the AF-ON Button for Autofocus

Three pros discuss using the AF-ON button for AF control

Advanced

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4.1 Rating
Pet Mode

Nikon's new Pet mode lets you capture the expressions and actions of your pet cat or dog automatically.

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4.6 Rating
10 Tips for Better Camera Panning

Dave Black's tips for camera panning

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4.8 Rating
Professional Video Camera Equipment for Your HDSLR

Using third-party rigs, rail systems and other accessories

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4.5 Rating
Take Better Portraits

Tips for taking a good portrait photo

Beginner

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4.2 Rating
Macro Photography Tips: Photographing Insects and Other Small Creatures

A few quick tips on macro photography

Beginner

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4.4 Rating
Understanding Focal Length

Focal length, usually represented in millimeters (mm), is the basic description of a…

Beginner

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4.5 Rating
Understanding Maximum Aperture

Learn how aperture affects the end-result image.

Beginner

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3.2 Rating
Smart Portrait System

Nikon’s Smart Portrait System incorporates into COOLPIX cameras a series of automatic functions,…

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4.0 Rating
Getting Started: How to Hold Your D-SLR Camera

Getting sharper, more in-focus pictures can be as simple as learning how…

Beginner

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4.4 Rating
Taking Great Portraits with COOLPIX Cameras

See how COOLPIX technologies let you take great portraits

Beginner

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Minimizing Distracting Backgrounds Using Composition

Lucas Gilman shares a tip for clean backgrounds

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4.1 Rating
Tips for Photographing Birds

Birds make great subjects for photographs; tips for capturing them with your camera.

Beginner

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4.6 Rating
Underwater Photography

Tips for getting started shooting underwater with David Doubilet

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4.4 Rating
Reflex Action: A Surf Photographer's Top Tips

Surf shooter Jay Watson offers tips for getting great surfing action photos

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4.4 Rating
Summer Lyn: Photographing Babies, Toddlers & Kids

Careful planning or just being lucky—both can work in your favor.

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4.0 Rating
Photograph Family and Friends During the Holidays

The holidays are prime picture-taking time. Get some great tips on…

Beginner

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5.0 Rating
Do a Test Run for Important Portrait Shoots

Dave Black discusses setting up shoots in advance

Beginner

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3.8 Rating
You’re the Guest: How to Capture Unique Photos at a Wedding

Abby Liga discusses getting great photos when you're a…

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4.4 Rating
Here and Now

The added attractions of the D5100.

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4.7 Rating
Using Auto FP High-Speed Sync to Illuminate Fast Sports Action

Dave Black on using high-speed flash sync for sports…

Advanced

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4.5 Rating
Capturing or Freezing Motion in Photos

Learn how to freeze the motion in an action scene or capture a blur to show…

Beginner

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4.4 Rating
Jim Richardson: Why Fast Lenses Make All the Difference

When You’re Constantly on the Move, Fast Glass Makes Tough Shots…

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4.3 Rating
How To Grow Your Garden Photography Skills

Taking great photographs of your own garden is easy with a few simple tips

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4.7 Rating
Speedlight Tutorial: Bounce Technique

David Tejada uses Speedlights wirelessly for pleasing portrait illumination

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AF Area Modes
3.2 Rating
AF Area Modes

Nikon’s three AF area modes—single point AF, dynamic area AF and auto area AF—are designed to handle any…

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4.7 Rating
Building Your Creative Team

Dixie Dixon on building a creative support team

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4.4 Rating
How to Read Your NIKKOR Lens Barrel

Understanding what all of those markings and designations on your lens really mean.

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4.5 Rating
How to Capture the “Wow” Factor

Photographer Evan Williams on shooting stunning photographs

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3.6 Rating
Second Time Around

Take a closer look at some of our classic lenses updated with the latest technology.

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4.3 Rating
How to Photograph Lightning

Storm chaser Jim Reed offers valuable tips for making photos of lighning while staying safe.

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4.9 Rating
Think About Your Subject Before You Begin Shooting

Find out why thinking about your photos can be as important as taking…

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4.7 Rating
COOLPIX Cameras and Cool Lighting with Speedlights

Lucas Gilman shows you how to use Speedlights with COOLPIX cameras

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3.8 Rating
Hands On

Lindsay Silverman discusses autofocusing when using teleconverters

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3D Focus Tracking

An invaluable feature for sports, action and wildlife photography, 3D focus tracking, available in select Nikon D-SLRs, automatically shifts the focus point to follow the movement of the subject. With the shutter release pressed halfway, you'll see in the viewfinder the lens continuously maintain focus as the subject moves.

However, maintaining focus doesn't guarantee a sharp image, as there is a short time lag between the release of the shutter and the capture of the picture. To solve this problem, the focus tracking system is a predictive system that uses special algorithms to forecast the position of the subject at the moment the image is captured. The prediction is based on a measurement of the subject's movement and speed.

Simple predictive tracking is very effective for pictures of a subject moving at constant speed toward the camera, but to provide maximum focusing performance for a subject that abruptly changes direction at high speed, or a subject with low contrast, moving randomly, the AF system must accumulate subject location data using multiple focus areas. The AF modules built into selected Nikon D-SLRs have as many as 51 focus areas that can detect vertical, horizontal and diagonal movement of the subject.

To realize high-precision AF for high-speed continuous shooting of a fast-moving subject, the processing speed of the AF cycle is vital. To provide that speed, a Nikon proprietary technology called overlap servo prepares for the focus detection of the next shot while the lens-driving operation for the current shot is in process.

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