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D90 mirror lock up work around?

Damon MacLeod , Feb 24, 2009; 01:06 p.m.

The D90 doesn’t have a mirror lock up function, but I read somewhere that it’s possible to set a 1 second delay that will counteract the mirror vibration. Unfortunately I can’t find any information on how to set this delay. Have I been led astray?


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Jay Poel , Feb 24, 2009; 01:23 p.m.

Custom Setting d10 - Exposure Delay Mode
Page 183 of the English manual.

Eric Sande , Feb 24, 2009; 01:23 p.m.

It's called "Exposure Delay Mode", Custom Setting d10, on page 183 of the manual.

It's virtually the same thing as the self-timer firing off after 1 second, though only 2, 5, 10 and 20 sec. can actually be selected for the self-timer.

Damon MacLeod , Feb 24, 2009; 01:30 p.m.

Thanks! In your experience, is the exposure delay effective? Is it comparable to a real mirror lock up?

Shun Cheung , Feb 24, 2009; 01:39 p.m.

A one-second delay should be more than sufficient for any vibration from mirror slap to die down. In fact, personally I prefer the 0.4 second on the D2X and D200, but apparently plenty of people prefer a slightly longer delay.

The main issue for a long delay is that you start losing control of the precise moment the image is actually captured. That probably does not matter if you are inside a studio and have full control of the environment. For outdoor wildlife or flower macro type shots, 1 second can make a big difference. I wish Nikon would add user-selectable delays between 0.4 and 1 second.

Eric Sande , Feb 24, 2009; 01:40 p.m.

Well, outside of mirror lock up it's the best you can do. I was out shooting film the other day and had the camera set to a 2 sec. self-timer delay on a tripod. For some telephoto shots I could definitely see through the viewfinder that getting my hands off the camera after pushing the shutter release was making a difference.

Frank Skomial , Feb 24, 2009; 01:47 p.m.

Not the same as self-timer. Self-timer only helps with vibration caused possibly by your finger pushing the shutter button and delays the mirror/shutter combined action, but does not help reduce any vibration caused by the mirror up movement.
With the exposure delay mode mirror action is separated from shutter action by 1 second time delay, allowing mirror caused vibration to decay.

Dan South , Feb 24, 2009; 02:21 p.m.

Good to know. I was not aware of this function. Is it exclusive to the D90? Do you have to use the menus to toggle this mode on and off, or is there a physical button or dial that can enable it a la MLU mode on a D700?

Thanks to Frank for pointing out the differences between "exposure delay mode" and the self-timer.

Shun Cheung , Feb 24, 2009; 02:41 p.m.

This same feature is on the D100, D200, D300, D700, D2 and D3 families (and perhaps some others). The delay on the D2 and D200 was 0.4 second as I mentioned earlier but it is 1 second on the current models.

On some older film bodies such as the FM/FE series, the self timer would trigger the mirror at the beginning of the self timer cycle so that you get the so called "pseudo mirror lock up."

Jay Poel , Feb 25, 2009; 01:22 p.m.

On the D80 the Exposure Delay Mode is Custom Setting 31 and is the same as the D200 with a 0.4 second delay.

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