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Best Settings and Lens for Italy Trip

edited August 2013 Posted in » Canon 60D Forum
I am going to Italy and I have a couple of questions before I leave this weekend. First off, I took a camera course so I know the basics about shooting in manual mode. I want to take some night shots, maybe some with car lights streaming past as I focus on a subject. Curious about the camera settings to use (shutter speed, f stop, ISO) and what settings such as manual or av or tv. Also, what lens should I use? I have a 60D with an 18-55mm lens as well as a 55-250mm. I have a tripod and was planning on using my timer for night shots as I don't have a remote yet. Any other tips or website references would be appreciated. I'm going to Rome then to Florence. Any suggestions on some nice landscapes or scenery to shoot? Thanks in advance for any replies.

Mark from Canada. Go leafs go lol.


  • edited August 2013
    You are visiting my second home. I have been going to Italy for over 10 years now and have visited Rome 4 times. Here are some suggestions for locations.
    1) The Colosseum - this is also an excellent location for night shots producing trails from car lights because it is essentially a roundabout. Use Av with an f stop that will give depth of field to keep the Colosseum and the traffic in focus and a timed exposure of about 5 - 10 seconds. You may have to experiment here. I would use ISO 400 as liontamer suggests, which will help reduce the amount of noise.

    2) Visit the Castel San Angelo (the base is the Emperor Hadrian's mausoleum). From the parapets you get unprecedented views of St. Peter's Church and the Vatican and vistas over Rome. Don't visit on a Monday because all museums are closed on Mondays.

    3) The Pantheon

    4) The Trevi fountain - the area in front of the fountain is quite small and gets very packed so beware pickpockets. Best time to visit is early in the morning, say around 9 before the crowds grow too big.

    5) The piazza Navona for the famous four rivers fountain.

    6) The rear of the Capitoline museum where balconies provide panoramic views across the Roman forum. It is on the other side of the 'typewriter' as the locals call the monument to their old king Victor Emmanuel. Like the Colosseum, you cannot miss this structure. If you pay to go into the Capitoline Museum there are 360 degree views around Rome from its rooftop balconies.

    All these locations offer great photo opportunities and all are featured in the Tom Hanks film Angels and Demons. The 2 kit lenses will serve you fine.
    Cannot help you with Florence. After 10 years we still haven't got around to that side of Italy yet including Venice, but they are on our bucket list.
    Best regards, PBked
  • edited August 2013
    I forgot to mention daylight camera settings. Under a Roman sun with clear blue skies you will find the sunny 16 rule supplies consistent manual results (aperture f/16, shutter 1/125th, ISO 100). For general picture taking, P mode works quite well in these conditions, so P mode, white balance - daylight and ISO 100. If you decide to use aperture priority AV, I have found both your kit lenses to work best around f/8 or f/11 for overall clarity and sharpness. Use auto ISO limited to 400 for the odd shady shots. Hope this helps.
  • edited August 2013
    One final thought...set the auto lighting optimizer to off (page 101 in the camera manual). It will tend to make your pictures look overexposed.
    Enjoy your holiday, PBked
  • edited August 2013
    If I listed all the good watering holes in Rome I would need to take over the forum because there are hundreds of them. It would be quicker to list the bad ones, but come to think of it, I've never really come across any bad ones.
    Just a piece of useless information; the pizza was invented in the Naples area in the 18th century. Rome didn't get its first pizzaria until 1926.
  • Groan, but very quick-witted all the same. Can't put a topping on that one. Lol
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