Last Monday my wife and I went to a concert of Ronan Keating in Bangkok. I’m not a huge fan of Ronan, but I do like quite a few of his songs. Not too many Western artists make a stop in Bangkok when they’re on tour, so we take what we can get! Don’t get me wrong though. Ronan put up a good performance and we had an enjoyable evening. He pretty much sang all the songs from his latest compilation album 10 Years of Hits.
We were very lucky to get excellent seats: 3rd row dead center. Though the ticket said no cameras were allowed, only big cameras were actually being confiscated. So I took the opportunity to give my F30 a workout under some harsh lighting conditions. I uploaded a selection of 27 photos.
We were too far from the stage to use the flash, so I set the camera to Auto ISO 1600. The first batch of pictures came out with Ronan’s face as one big blown highlight. The first picture in the gallery is the only one that wasn’t totally blown. It does capture the lighting of the stage quite nicely.
I quickly switched to using spot metering and after some experimentation I settled on -2EV exposure compensation. This made the stage appear darker than it was. But at least the star of the show now looked good. The F30 performed surprisingly well. Out of 230 pictures, 150 were properly exposed and without motion blur. The camera consistently selected ISO 1600, which obviously helped freeze the action. Viewed at 100% on screen the photos look like impressionist paitings. But reduced to 800 by 600 for the web, the results are simply excellent given I was using a pocket camera in a situation where you really need something bigger. I didn’t do any post-processing other than downsizing the pictures.