A high ISO translates into noise and artifacts and an unusable photo, right? Not necessarily. Combine the Nikon D90‘s sensor with the Nikon 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 ED-IF AF-S VR (Vibration Reduction) DX zoom lens and you can hand-hold the camera in low light and get remarkable results at ISO 2500 and above. Noise is negligible. In a few of the test shots below I used Imagenomic’s Noiseware plug-in to smooth out the images
When this night shot was taken the ocean in the background wasn’t visible. A street lamp at left lit the sign. Shot hand-held with VR turned on. 1/6 at f/4.5, ISO: 2500.
Again, no tripod. This was shot wide at 18mm, 1/3 at f/8.0 with the ISO set at 2500. VR on.
Alas, this fountain photo would have been a winner had a tripod been used.
Tip: Avoid using Photoshop’s native “Reduce Noise” command (above). You get more control and better results with third-party solutions. My favorite is Noiseware Professional from Imagenomic.