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I went to the roof of Garage 4 of the medical center on July 4. My parking pass, unfortunately, had not been re-activated for the start of the new academic year, so we had to pay. But we got some good shots. There was a fireworks show over downtown, which was really too far away to get good shots, even using the 1.5X teleconverter to achieve a total of 18X zoom. The problem was too much camera shake, even with a tripod. Even so, a few came out surprisingly well.

About an hour after the downtown show, there was another show over Hermann Park, which is essentially right across the street from the garage, so I got some better shots.

I took over 200 total pictures, but only a few came out really well, even from the Hermann Park show. The issue is that you really want a long shutter time, like 10-20 seconds, or even longer. But the Canon S2 limits you to 15 seconds, and it also goes through a noise-reduction pre-exposure with a time equal to the exposure time. So if you try to take a 15-second exposure, you must first wait 15 seconds for the pre-exposure. That makes it very very hard to take long-exposure pictures of dynamic things like fireworks where you need to open the shutter at a precise moment. But without the pre-exposure, a CCD image sensor would make too noisy an image.

Most of these were taken with exposure times around 0.25 - 1.0 seconds at f/3.2 on ISO400 sensitivity. Some are longer.

Downtown Images

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Hermann Park Images

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The one in the lower left (#169) was with a longer exposure (2.5 seconds) and you can really see the foreground. The sensor is really quite sensitive to light.

Here's a shot of a crane across the street, taken at the same time at night, with a 15-second exposure. It looks like daylight almost.

And here's a shot of a helicopter on the roof of the hospital with a really cool effect from the landing lights.