With the Sony Alpha range of mirrorless cameras just getting more and more popular with each year that passes, it really is easy to see why any new release to the Sony Alpha range quickly grows a huge customer base. The Sony a6500 is no different with the camera managing to become very popular, extremely quickly due to offering a ton of versatility and some of the best image quality possible for its price range.
Although the a6500 is seeing constant growth in its customer base, we are already seeing large numbers of people reaching out asking a number of different questions about the camera body and how best to use it. With night photography becoming more and more popular too, we have noticed a number of people constantly asking about how to improve their Sony a6500 night photography image quality over the last few months.
Due to this, we are going to be going over a number of different tips and tricks that our readers will be able to use to their advantage to improve the image quality that they are able to capture at night with the a6500. With the a6500 being a very versatile camera, you can use it in all of the popular night photography sub-niches so we have tried to include tips and tricks for every possible use case we can think of.
That said though, only you know what you are planning to do with your camera so some of our tips below may not actually apply to what you have planned with the camera so just skip over those. That said though, we feel that we have something in here for everyone and we have also tried to include as many free tips as possible too as we know many of our readers are on a budget.
Consider An Online Night Photography Course
The photographers who use the Sony a6500 as their camera of choice come from a wide range of experience levels with it being a popular option for entry level, intermediate level, and professional level photographers. That said, the majority of the people that we see reaching out for help on how to improve their night photography skills are usually entry level or intermediate level photographers.
If this is the case for you then we would highly recommend that you take advantage of all of our readers being able to sign up for a no-obligation trial of Skillshare premium without having to spend a cent. Over the last few years the team at Skillshare have been putting a ton of effort in to ensure they are attracting the absolute best course creators possible to their platform.
This has resulted in many world class photographers signing up to add their own photography courses to Skillshare. In our opinion, they currently have one of the best online night photography courses ever created that has managed to grow an excellent reputation while also gaining a ton of great reviews too.
The vast majority of the other photographers who have completed the course have had to pay to be able to enroll on it but as a reader of Photography Paws, you are able to enroll on it without having to pay via our trail offer of Skillshare premium above. The course doesn’t take too long to complete and can quickly help you understand how you are able to capture the best photographs possible with your Sony a6500.
Get Yourself A Lens That Is Ideal For Night Photography
Thankfully, there are a number of great lenses that can mount to your a6500 without you having to use a convertor or adaptor. On top of this, the kit lenses that are available for the a6500 are also decent for some photography niches if you are on a budget too.
If you do have the funds available then we would highly recommend that you try to add a decent lens for night photography to your camera accessories as soon as possible though. This is probably the single greatest improvement that you are able to make as a nice and fast aperture can make a world of difference to your image quality. There is no need to purchase an expensive lens either as the a6500 has some great budget friendly lenses that you can often pick up even cheaper than retail if you are go with a pre-owned option.
Invest In A Suitable Tripod
If you are an entry level photographer then you may not have had a chance to add a tripod to your camera accessories yet. Behind a decent night photography lens, we feel that getting your self a tripod for some decent image stabilization is the next camera accessory that you should be looking to pickup.
Although you can usually get some pretty solid photographs with your Sony a6500 while holding it in your hands for many photography niches, this tends to not be the case for any low light photography niches such as night photography. This is due to their often being little to no light available to hit your camera sensor so even a slight vibration when holding your camera in your hands can cause your image to blur.
As we have touched on above, we know many of our readers may be on a budget but there are some really cheap tripods on the market that can get the job done without you having to break the bank. The difference in your image quality between holding your a6500 in your hands for your night photography sessions and mounting it to a tripod is like night and day (forgive the pin).
Consider Getting Some Steel Wool
As you can see in the photograph above, thinking of a way that you are able to integrate the use of some steel wool into your night photography sessions can really make your photographs pop. The additional light and movement from the steel wool adds excitement to the image and if you like to share your work on social media it can help your account stand out and draw potential followers or subscribers to your work.
Take Advantage Of The Landscape
A great free trick that you are able to use is to take advantage of the local landscape in the area where you are capturing your photographs. The photo above shows how you are able to use a near by rock formation to add scale to the vastness of the stars in the sky with minimal effort being required on your part.
That said though, so many people miss these great opportunities and often walk right by excellent night photography opportunities. A large number of people, even experienced, professional photographers tend to focus in on their main goals that are often commonly photographed areas that they found on Instagram.
Try to always take advantage of every opportunity and never just focus in on getting the photographs that you initially planned for. If you are in an urban location then you are able to take advantage of other landmarks that stand out such as bridges, tall buildings, or statues as we know that not everyone has easy access to mountains or remote rock formations.
Experiment With Manual Focus
This one is usually only really a problem for entry level photographers but a large number of people simply rely on auto focus technology for their photography work. Unfortunately, many people end up letting this grow into a habit and it is a very bad habit to have as it can end up limiting what you are able to do in a large number of photography niches.
This is even worse when it comes to night photography as many autofocus systems, even the professional level expensive ones just constantly track over and over again as the lack of light prevents the autofocus from working. This is where being able to manually focus your lens on your subject becomes essential and it is relatively easy to build up your manual focus skillset if you play around with your manual focus ring rather than just switching to autofocus all the time.
Play Around With Your Camera Settings
As we touched on back at the start of this article, the Sony a6500 is a very versatile camera and its camera settings allow you to use it for pretty much any photography niche in multiple ways. The same goes for night photography but many people just Google their camera type and their photography niche to find some settings for it.
This also really holds you back if you are trying to get the best image quality possible as it fails to take into account the different levels of lighting or the distance of your subject from your camera. Although this may sound basic, this can end up drastically changing the photograph that you are able to capture if you always stick to the same camera settings.
We would highly recommend that you get out and play around with your a6500 and make tweaks to the camera settings as often as possible. Once you get a better feel for the various settings on the camera, you can pretty much make the required changes for optimal image quality on the fly within seconds so it is worth doing.