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Photographing aircraft

edited January 2014 Posted in » Nikon D3200 Forum
Hi There!

I just made the plunge and got my first digital SLR. My question is what are the recommended settings for photographing aircraft?

I love to visit air shows and I have several airports nearby. I've had a dabble, but my results have been a bit dodgy to say the least! I have now resorted to using my camera on auto and the results are good, but I am not using my camera to its full potential.

I have 2 lenses with my camera, the Nikon DX 55-200mm and the DX 18-55mm. I also have a 2X converter.

Any hints or help is greatly appreciated. :)


  • Hey @moggy - For aircraft, you'll want to shoot primarily in Shutter priority mode (S on the mode dial).

    1. Set the shutter speed to 1/1000
    2. Enable Auto ISO (go to Menu -> ISO Sensitivity Settings -> Auto ISO -> ON) and set the Max ISO to 1600
    3. Set the Release Mode to Continuous
    4. Set the Focus Mode to AF-C
    5. Set the AF-area mode to Dynamic-Area AF

    With these settings in place, aim the center focus point at the plane, half press the shutter button to continuously focus on the plane and when ready, hold down the shutter to fire off a burst of images. This will improve your odds of capturing a keeper. All the best!
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