Chip Photography Thread

horseshoez

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View attachment 618722View attachment 618723View attachment 618724View attachment 618725View attachment 618727View attachment 618728View attachment 618732

2 flashes off camera in an otherwise pretty dark room ( it was late at night after the wifey and kid went to bed), one blasts into the ceiling behind / over me, the other into the wall on the left.

Cam + setup:
View attachment 618729

Baaaaaaaang!!!!!! Was waiting to see something that displayed those IOC fracs in all their glory! Nicely done.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

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I beg to differ. Quite the contrary actually and I believe your chip photos are pretty nice even if there weren't that many taken. Majority are probably looking for some fun tips using their phones since most of us don't have a DSLR camera in our possession. Call it a DIY photography database. Some will opt to just use whatever is readily available to get better shots rather than go to Amazon and buy lighting boxes, etc...
Thanks for setting this up. THIS is why I came looking for a thread like this today. I just bought the newest Samsung S21 Ultra - with supposedly one of the best phone cameras available. So far, pics don't look that much better than my old S8+. I'm sure there are some adjustments and setting that I need to tweak to get optimal pics from my phone, but I don't know where to start. Hopefully I'll find some inspiration here when I finish reading this thread.
 

horseshoez

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Thanks for setting this up. THIS is why I came looking for a thread like this today. I just bought the newest Samsung S21 Ultra - with supposedly one of the best phone cameras available. So far, pics don't look that much better than my old S8+. I'm sure there are some adjustments and setting that I need to tweak to get optimal pics from my phone, but I don't know where to start. Hopefully I'll find some inspiration here when I finish reading this thread.

Niiiiiice!!!! I wanted the thread to be an excuse to fool around with different devices, be it a phone or an actual camera, as well as avid photographers helping the rest of us take better pictures of our stuff.

Looking forward to seeing some pics off the S21!
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

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Niiiiiice!!!! I wanted the thread to be an excuse to fool around with different devices, be it a phone or an actual camera, as well as avid photographers helping the rest of us take better pictures of our stuff.

Looking forward to seeing some pics off the S21!
I think step 1 is making sure I'm capturing photos in full resolution that these camera lenses are capable of. I currently automatically upload everything to Google Photos for saving to eternity. (I hope) And I think the photos are being immediately compressed by Google. I need to spend some time on this issue, but alas, I have very little of that commodity these days... I'm assuming that somewhere within the phone storage are the original full resolution photos, but just not sure exactly how to find those. Ugh, technology is leaving me in the dust.

Adding this to my endlessly long to do list...
 

AK Chip

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iPhone and photo tent.
3B6BBBCE-48B4-484F-9782-FDB6645A12E9.jpeg
 

LeGold

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How'd I miss this thread! One day too late haha.

Here's my setup from yesterday's pr0n shoot. I used 2 spots where I could adjust the color temperature and also prevent from lighting the background. Not ideal, but I wanted something I can pack in&out quickly when needed.

20210209_212348.jpg


Overall happy with the results (even though I could have some light from the sides as well), so I'll give it a shot again.
 

horseshoez

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I think step 1 is making sure I'm capturing photos in full resolution that these camera lenses are capable of. I currently automatically upload everything to Google Photos for saving to eternity. (I hope) And I think the photos are being immediately compressed by Google. I need to spend some time on this issue, but alas, I have very little of that commodity these days... I'm assuming that somewhere within the phone storage are the original full resolution photos, but just not sure exactly how to find those. Ugh, technology is leaving me in the dust.

Adding this to my endlessly long to do list...

I'm completely clueless when it comes to how Samsung phones operate, especially with regards to photo storage. Bit of an Apple fan boy here. I'm pretty sure one can dig down into the folders to find full resolution pictures somehow prior to posting them. As for uploading them onto the forum as "lossless" I've been using the Imgur method. I just upload them to Imgur, then use that link placed between [ img ] photo link [ /img ]. <- remove all spaces, and boom it's uploaded at full resolution. The forum compresses your attachments in a way that causes them to lose their luster, especially when we're uploading pics of beautiful vivid chips.
 

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I was always wondering how some can shoot such awesome chip pictures. Thanks for this thread! I got a smartphone thats it. No photo tent. Any advice on using lights or background/or color of the mat the chips are standing on? Sorry i didnt find all the right words in english, hope still understandable..
 

LeGold

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I was always wondering how some can shoot such awesome chip pictures. Thanks for this thread! I got a smartphone thats it. No photo tent. Any advice on using lights or background/or color of the mat the chips are standing on? Sorry i didnt find all the right words in english, hope still understandable..
@JeepologyOffroad makes some of the nices photos here. Only using the phone, but he has easily accessible great natural light.
 

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Omg, now I have to buy a photo tent!?!?! This in addition to the pile of usps boxes and envelopes, the monster roll of bubble wrap, 10 rolls of packing tape,15 bottles of nail polish remover, 2 sets of exacto knives, 6 vice clamps, 3 heating pads, 6 boxes of magic eraser, 2 bottles of dawn (with do not touch written on them), 10 bird cages, 6 versa chip cases, and oh yeah 14,000 chips, my wife is gonna throw me out of the house.
 

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I'll add some stuff here because it has been asked. I use a light box and some led lights on a stand. A tripod and a dslr. I do have a nice Canon f2.8 100 macro lens that helps, but you can get great pics without the macro lens. Camera body is completely over rated. This picture was taken with a Canon 40D which came out in 2007 & can be had on the bay for $50-$100
 

Sambukan

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How'd I miss this thread! One day too late haha.

Here's my setup from yesterday's pr0n shoot. I used 2 spots where I could adjust the color temperature and also prevent from lighting the background. Not ideal, but I wanted something I can pack in&out quickly when needed.

View attachment 633380

Overall happy with the results (even though I could have some light from the sides as well), so I'll give it a shot again.
You are using indirect light? And is the light on top of the table turned off? Just one light source?
 

horseshoez

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@JeepologyOffroad makes some of the nices photos here. Only using the phone, but he has easily accessible great natural light.

+1 all day!!!! I know John has a very good eye for when he takes pics but the real secret is natural lighting whenever you’re able to use it. I’ll keep it simple so as to get you started with easy tips,

1) natural indirect lighting. Don’t let the light from the sun directly hit the object. Looks washed out and have too many shadows. Just take a pic on a nice surface nearby a window or somewhere where you have enough daylight to show off your subject.

2) no set rule for surface or background. You can get creative. I’ve used a wood kitchen stool to make it look like a nice wooden table. Nobody would know so long as I keep the edges out of the frame. Just looks like a nice rustic wood surface.

3) try to use portrait to blur your background and add depth to your photo. Avoid distractions behind the chips if you’re doing that. Only stuff that compliments them, cut cards, chip stacks, etc.
 

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+1 all day!!!! I know John has a very good eye for when he takes pics but the real secret is natural lighting whenever you’re able to use it. I’ll keep it simple so as to get you started with easy tips,

1) natural indirect lighting. Don’t let the light from the sun directly hit the object. Looks washed out and have too many shadows. Just take a pic on a nice surface nearby a window or somewhere where you have enough daylight to show off your subject.

2) no set rule for surface or background. You can get creative. I’ve used a wood kitchen stool to make it look like a nice wooden table. Nobody would know so long as I keep the edges out of the frame. Just looks like a nice rustic wood surface.

3) try to use portrait to blur your background and add depth to your photo. Avoid distractions behind the chips if you’re doing that. Only stuff that compliments them, cut cards, chip stacks, etc.
Thanks alot, i appreciate it. What i was wondering about surface or background, there is no better going with more contrast? Or less contrast to the chips? Or darker or lighter surface?
 

LeGold

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You are using indirect light? And is the light on top of the table turned off? Just one light source?
It was direct light in this case (2 spots from the left, above). Not ideal, but I don't have any nice white surroundings in that room. I could have softened it, but it would have made the whole setup much more complex. The lamp on top was turned off, since it has a yellow/golden tint to it and I didn't want it to screw with the colors.
 

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Will try out the advices,
It was direct light in this case (2 spots from the left, above). Not ideal, but I don't have any nice white surroundings in that room. I could have softened it, but it would have made the whole setup much more complex. The lamp on top was turned off, since it has a yellow/golden tint to it and I didn't want it to screw with the colors.
Very interesting thanks alot
 

LeGold

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Thanks alot, i appreciate it. What i was wondering about surface or background, there is no better going with more contrast? Or less contrast to the chips? Or darker or lighter surface?
Ideally, the background should not take the focus away from the chips. It doesn't have to be black/white/grey or anything similar (again, see the wooden pattern on @JeepologyOffroad's photos), but it should not be distracting. In my example, it would have been distracting so I chose to keep it very dark and have as much of the light hitting the chips & table.

Also... BOKEH! But too much of it can also be distracting.
 

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Ok i will try some different surfaces. Probably have to wait till winter is over, as we dont have that much natural light. Or maybe i will buy a spot..
 

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Last question, sorry i feel like i get a starting lesson in photography. Using flash? No flash?
 

horseshoez

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I'll add some stuff here because it has been asked. I use a light box and some led lights on a stand. A tripod and a dslr. I do have a nice Canon f2.8 100 macro lens that helps, but you can get great pics without the macro lens. Camera body is completely over rated. This picture was taken with a Canon 40D which came out in 2007 & can be had on the bay for $50-$100

Perfect timing. Case in point with proper lighting and nice backgrounds to use. Very nice!!!
 

horseshoez

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Last question, sorry i feel like i get a starting lesson in photography. Using flash? No flash?

Avoid flash. Too harsh. Natural lighting or continuous lighting from another light source will be better when you start experimenting. You can use a light bulb with a piece of paper in front of it if you don’t have a lighting box or similar. Just stay away from too yellow or too blue temperatures. 4000k light source should do the job.
 

LeGold

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Last question, sorry i feel like i get a starting lesson in photography. Using flash? No flash?
What @horseshoez said. Also, if the flash is your only option (assuming an external one mounted on the camera), don't use it directly but rather bounce it off the ceiling (assuming it's a white one). Flash from mobile phone - wouldn't use it.
 

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Avoid flash. Too harsh. Natural lighting or continuous lighting from another light source will be better when you start experimenting. You can use a light bulb with a piece of paper in front of it if you don’t have a lighting box or similar. Just stay away from too yellow or too blue temperatures. 4000k light source should do the job.
I'll make a comment here on these two topics. Agree on the flash. You can use flash, but in order to use it correctly you need to bounce it and probably need an umbrella. All that is just not necessary. For me the light box and continuous lighting does a really good job and once set up it is super easy. Here is my light box set up below. I jus leave it up so I can use it at a moments notice.

The whole too blue or too yellow thing...
The technical terminology for this is white balance. All light has a temperature. The easiest way to think about it is think about the color outside late in the day in the hour or so before the sun goes down. The lighting is quite yellow, right? They call this warm lighting. Then there is cool lighting. Flourescent lights are usually a good example of this. Rather harsh almost blue lighting. In order for your pictures to look good the setting on your camera is going to have to match the temperature of the light of the light source. This temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin. Just about every camera will have a bunch of automatic settings: sunlight, inside lighting, cloudy etc. Those automatic settings will match the Temp K that the camera manufacturer associated with those conditions. The will work relatively well most of the time. There will also always be a way to adjust the white balance manually and get a custom Temp K. Sometimes you will need to do this, but probably not most of the time. The newer and better the camera, the better white balance seems to work. If your pictures are coming out looking unnaturally yellow or unnaturally blue then your white balance needs to be adjusted. I know all this can be done post processing too, but if you just learn to do stuff like this on camera then depending on what you are doing with your pictures you may not even need to do any post processing at all.

 
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horseshoez

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I'll make a comment here on these two topics. Agree on the flash. You can use flash, but in order to use it correctly you need to bounce it and probably need an umbrella. All that is just not necessary. For me the light box and continuous lighting does a really good job and once set up it is super easy. Here is my light box set up below. I jus leave it up so I can use it at a moments notice.

The whole too blue or too yellow thing...
The technical terminology for this is white balance. All light has a temperature. The easiest way to think about it is think about the color outside late in the day in the hour or so before the sun goes down. The lighting is quite yellow, right? They call this warm lighting. Then there is cool lighting. Flourescent lights are usually a good example of this. Rather harsh almost blue lighting. In order for your pictures to look good the setting on your camera is going to have to match the temperature of the light of the light source. This temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin. Just about every camera will have a bunch of automatic settings: sunlight, inside lighting, cloudy etc. Those automatic settings will match the Temp K that the camera manufacturer associated with those conditions. The will work relatively well most of the time. There will also always be a way to adjust the white balance manually and get a custom Temp K. Sometimes you will need to do this, but probably not most of the time. The newer and better the camera, the better white balance seems to work


100%. I was just trying to simplify for someone that just wanted some cool pics from a phone. I think a lighting box and another independent source of continuous lighting is worth the investment. Not just for chips, but if you decide to sell off something of yours online, you’re increasing the chances of catching people’s eyes when you have it lit appropriately and have the right angle to show it off. I use everything on my end for both chips and my wife’s Etsy store.
 

horseshoez

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Now that I think back on my answer I also reverted to say no flash because my mind automatically thought he would turn in his phone flash. Phone flash not diffused just totally destroys your shot. Like @Nanook said, try to bounce or diffuse it so it’s softer on your object.
 

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Thanks for starting this thread! I thought there was something like this out there that I was looking for recently after a terrible photo shoot, but couldn't find anything.

Major problem I'm having is color balances changing for chips/denoms, even when the camera is on a tripod and the lighting is consistent. What the hell, photography?
One of the biggest problems with phone cameras is that they will try to "white balance", an automatic process where the phone tries to identify something white, then adjusts the colors around that one spot. This prevents everything looking "green" (old fluorescent lights), "yellow" (incandescent lights), or blue (more natural light).

An easy way to resolve this is to add a sheet of white paper to the photo where you can later crop it out. I tend to go for an old IKEA white table top for the close-up pics.

View attachment 633483
I think step 1 is making sure I'm capturing photos in full resolution that these camera lenses are capable of. I currently automatically upload everything to Google Photos for saving to eternity. (I hope) And I think the photos are being immediately compressed by Google. I need to spend some time on this issue, but alas, I have very little of that commodity these days... I'm assuming that somewhere within the phone storage are the original full resolution photos, but just not sure exactly how to find those. Ugh, technology is leaving me in the dust.

Adding this to my endlessly long to do list...
  1. Plug your phone into your computer with a USB.
  2. Unlock your phone. You may have to "Allow" device to use phone data.
  3. On a PC, find the drive that looks like your phone. My current phone is named "Missy" (All my phones are named after Doctor Who villains)
  4. you can check under "Phone" or "Card" depending on how it stores photos, or just click in the search box (mine says "search Missy") and type ".jpg"
This will pull up every photo on your phone. It is not fast - in fact it is dreadfully slow. Somewhere around 5 minutes. But you will get every pic, thumbnail, and shared photo, that your phone has ever processed without being deleted.

There are other ways of doing the search, including perusing through the files on your phone, but this method is a catch all for everything in it's micro-bowels.
 

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............. I think a lighting box and another independent source of continuous lighting is worth the investment. Not just for chips, but if you decide to sell off something of yours online, you’re increasing the chances of catching people’s eyes when you have it lit appropriately and have the right angle to show it off.
Totally agree. So many people post advertisements of stuff with just absolutely pathetic pictures. It totally blows my mind when someone tries to sell something with a completely underexposed, out of focus picture. It is amazing that they sell at any price.
 

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Great thread, some excellent tips, especially the photo box setups! I'll definitely be putting some of these to use once my CPC arrives - will need to figure out a solution for a box and lighting. I do have a Canon speedlite 430ex ii, which I've found works pretty well indoors for providing indirect light. I'm definitely no pro photographer though.

Question re: uploading the photos to PCF: what's the recommendation? I understand that uploading directly isn't the ideal way to do it?
 
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