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How to use the A,M,S,P functiosns on my Nikon d40
Ok so I'm an rookie with DSLRS and I'm tryin how to use these functions correctly..ive seen tonf of good pics with my type of cam and those functions but miine come out shitty..i wanna master these functionsi need help!..

Comments (35)

This website is probably a good start for you..

Http://photodoto.com/...nderstanding-exposure-shutter-speed-aperture-and-iso/.

A = Aperture PriorityM = Manual (you're in control of both aperture & shutter speed)S = Shutter PriorityP = Program Mode (for now, think of it as Auto-Mode)..

Whether you agree with it or not; when I say something, I'm expressing *my* opinion. If you agree, then great. If you don't, fine...

Comment #1

ReadPracticeReviewRepeat.

GaryPhotos at http://www.pbase.com/gary_602zAll who wander are not lost!..

Comment #2

1: Read your camera manual2: Buy a good book on starting photography3: Practice4: Practice5: Practice.

The greatest of mankind's criminals are those who delude themselves into thinking they have done 'the right thing.'- Rayna Butler..

Comment #3

For a given scene, decide what YOUR vision is. Do you need a fast shutter to freeze motion, do you need a slow shutter to show motion. Do you need a large aperture (low f/stop) to isolate your subject from it's foreground/backgroud or do you need a small aperture (high f/stop) to bring everything into focus?.

Its easy if it is sunny out, because you just set it to your vision, (S or A) and shoot away. But if there is not plenty of light, then you use the opposite setting..

Example: IF you need a fast shutter, set to A mode, then select the lowest f/stop that will get your desired speed. Likewise, if you want everything in focus, set it to "S" mode, and use the slowest shutter speed you dare without getting camera-induced blur. (Actually you should use a tripod)Warm regards,DOF..

Comment #4

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Example: IF you need a fast shutter, set to A mode, then select thelowest f/stop that will get your desired speed. Likewise, if youwant everything in focus, set it to "S" mode, and use the slowestshutter speed you dare without getting camera-induced blur. (Actuallyyou should use a tripod).

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, put it in S and pick a fast shutter speed. If you need depth of field, put it in A and pick a small aperture...

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #5

The problem with Tv mode is if you select too fast of a shutter speed, you might get an underexposed image if the lens doesn't open up enough/ISO isn't high enough. Most cameras will blink something in the viewfinder to warn you of this, but it's easy to miss..

With Av mode, you open your lens up as wide as possible, and the resulting shutter speed is as fast as you can at that ISO..

I never use Tv, Av does everything I need (except for indoor flash work where I go into M).

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Example: IF you need a fast shutter, set to A mode, then select thelowest f/stop that will get your desired speed. Likewise, if youwant everything in focus, set it to "S" mode, and use the slowestshutter speed you dare without getting camera-induced blur. (Actuallyyou should use a tripod).

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed. If you need depth of field,put it in A and pick a small aperture...

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #6

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed..

By using A, and selecting a large aperture, you will automatically get the fastest shutter possible for that amount of light. If you blindly select a fast shutter speed, you risk underexposing the image..

If you need depth of field, put it in A and pick a small aperture...

By picking the slowest shutter speed you dare use, you automatically get the smallest aperture for that amount of light. If you blindly select a small aperture, you risk both camera-induced blur and subject-induced blur.

Remember, this is for scenes without BRIGHT light. I know this seems backwards, but by controlling the variable you are NOT interested in, you get the maximum/minimum variable you ARE interested inWarm regards,DOF..

Comment #7

Egordon99 wrote:.

The problem with Tv mode is if you select too fast of a shutterspeed, you might get an underexposed image if the lens doesn't openup enough/ISO isn't high enough. Most cameras will blink something inthe viewfinder to warn you of this, but it's easy to miss..

My camera (D2x) won't let you take an under-exposed picture in aperture or shutter priority mode- obviously in manual mode, you're allowed to override that. That is, you can't select a shutter speed that requires an aperture your lens doesn't support, or an aperture your shutter won't support and still take a picture..

In general, I fire off a frame to determine what I need for exposure compensation anyway, checking the histogram, so it's not that difficult to get a good exposure..

If you know your equipment, you'll know what the minimum and maximum values are anyway, simply ensure you're in that range if the equipment doesn't do that for you..

With Av mode, you open your lens up as wide as possible, and theresulting shutter speed is as fast as you can at that ISO..

I never use Tv, Av does everything I need (except for indoor flashwork where I go into M).

For sports, shutter priority is useful when you want to freeze or slightly blur the action. In the studio, I'm always in manual, in the field, either manual or aperture priority unless I'm shooting sports or something else where I want control of the shutter..

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #8

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed..

By using A, and selecting a large aperture, you will automaticallyget the fastest shutter possible for that amount of light. If youblindly select a fast shutter speed, you risk underexposing the image..

Not on my camera... I can miss an image by going out of range, but I can't get a bad exposure without going to manual mode. But if you're "blindly" selecting the shutter speed, then you're not learning anything about your camera or exposure, and over time you'll lose an edge in determining exposure. Finally, as the metering changes, you won't get the effect you need in terms of depth of field as you would if you were in aperture priority..

If you need depth of field, put it in A and pick a small aperture...

By picking the slowest shutter speed you dare use, you automaticallyget the smallest aperture for that amount of light. If you blindlyselect a small aperture, you risk both camera-induced blur andsubject-induced blur.

If you blindly allow the camera to select the aperture, you risk having the camera select an aperture that will bring you into diffraction territory. If you control the aperture, you control the aperture- and I'd suggest that's way more useful for learning the camera than simply relying on the outlying settings which aren't always appropriate and which change with the metering..

Finally, if you need a particular depth of field, such as one off a hyperfocal distance chart, putting yourself into shutter priority doesn't guarantee you the DoF you need. If you're going to learn your equipment and you want to control the results of your imaging, then you should learn to control the results of your imaging- ultimately, that means choosing settings, not choosing boundaries..

Remember, this is for scenes without BRIGHT light. I know thisseems backwards, but by controlling the variable you are NOTinterested in, you get the maximum/minimum variable you AREinterested in.

By simply setting things at the maximum or minimum you get the same thing *and* you can easily go up or down the range you're focused on- that is shutter or aperture and directly correlate the value with what you're shooting. That helps when you do finally start shooting in all manual mode, and it helps in terms of allowing you to get the results you need even if there's extra brightness or other metering issues..

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #9

Your points are well taken....

Paul Robertson wrote:.

If you're "blindly" selecting the shutter speed, then you're not learninganything about your camera or exposure, and over time you'll lose anedge in determining exposure..

OK, "blindly" was the wrong term. If I can barely eeek-out 1/250 for a soccer game, and I just set it to 1/250, I risk subject blur in the brighter parts of the field. If, instead, I select f/2.8 or so, I will always get the fastest shutter speed possible for that amount of light..

If you blindly allow the camera to select the aperture, you riskhaving the camera select an aperture that will bring you intodiffraction territory..

You are correct. However, this is all predicated on less than bright light. If the user selects a reasonable shutter speed, I doubt you will approach diffraction territory..

That helps when you do finally start shootingin all manual mode, and it helps in terms of allowing you to get theresults you need even if there's extra brightness or other meteringissues..

Agreed, this is the ultimate goal, to control all the variables..

Comment #10

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Your points are well taken....

I'm not trying to beat a dead horse, and I hope it doesn't seem that way....

OK, "blindly" was the wrong term. If I can barely eeek-out 1/250 fora soccer game, and I just set it to 1/250, I risk subject blur in thebrighter parts of the field. If, instead, I select f/2.8 or so, Iwill always get the fastest shutter speed possible for that amount oflight..

If 1/250th is right for not getting blur, you won't risk it in the brighter parts, you'll simply get more depth of field, since the shutter speed is fixed, the camera can only adjust aperture. So if you get say 1/..

Comment #11

There are so many options in adjustments, identify which you will most often use and then learn to do them so it becomes quick and easy. For me the most difficult thing in using the D40 is the menu system to make the adjustments for an individual pic. Learn to navigate the menu quickly to do basic stuff such as:.

1. white balance ( learn how to do a manual White Balance adj. and don't forget to adjust it back or to a different setting afterwards as it will shoot that balance in future pics unless changed).

2. Learn how to adjust strength of flash and how to disable flash. Which program modes are manual flash adjustable.3. Learn how to adjust ISO. Higher ISO- faster shutter speed..

4. Learn how to edit images after downloading to computer. Most shots can be noticeably improved with some simple adjustments. WB can be adjusted in an editing program if it is not corrects when shot..

Will..

Comment #12

Once you understand the basics of exposure, then the others will make sense..

Seriously, get a book or two and learn the basics. Fundamentals concepts are common among all cameras. Once you understand those, any camera is just a tool and ytou'll be able to use any of them in just a few minutes..

I'm not kidding.Chefziggyhttp://www.pbase.com/chefziggy/lecream.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #13

.......might help get you started. Learn what and why each function is important and why one function is selected over the other to give you a desired effect.http://www.shortcourses.com/use/Regards,Hank.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #14

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok so I'm an rookie with DSLRS and I'm tryin how to use these functionscorrectly..ive seen tonf of good pics with my type of cam and thosefunctions but miine come out shitty..i wanna master these functions .i need help!.

A, S, and P are all modes where the CAMERA controls the exposure. You can override the camera's EXPOSURE decision with the "exposure compensation" dial, but unless you do, all you're doing is changing tradeoffs for a given exposure:.

P - The camera picks aperture and shutter speed for you. (Some cameras let you roll a dial to change both at once.).

A - You pick the aperture, the camera picks the shutter speed (and tells you if it can't get a proper exposure given your aperture). This mode is good for when you want to control depth of field (how much of the picture around the subject is focused)..

S - You pick the shutter speed, the camera picks the aperture (and tells you if it can't get a proper exposure given your shutter speed). This mode is good for when you need to freeze subject motion (fast shutter speed) or emphasize it (slow shutter speed)..

In M mode, the camera leaves you on your own (its metering becomes nothing more than advice), and you can get the exposure as wrong as you like.  ..

Comment #15

Ok..So I get what they functions do now..but I still cant get a decent pic outta these functions..i try and mess with the options in the screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure or whatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they are either blurry or have horrible color..all the dummy functions like the ones with pictures..(the lady in hat,kid,sports guy)..those all work well obviously ...ok say I'm in a house or building with very low lighting..I should use A? ..what are some other function on the cam that could help me get a better pic..like should I crank up saturation?sharpness and all that?.

Tom_N wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok so I'm an rookie with DSLRS and I'm tryin how to use these functionscorrectly..ive seen tonf of good pics with my type of cam and thosefunctions but miine come out shitty..i wanna master these functions .i need help!.

A, S, and P are all modes where the CAMERA controls the exposure.You can override the camera's EXPOSURE decision with the "exposurecompensation" dial, but unless you do, all you're doing is changingtradeoffs for a given exposure:.

P - The camera picks aperture and shutter speed for you. (Somecameras let you roll a dial to change both at once.).

A - You pick the aperture, the camera picks the shutter speed (andtells you if it can't get a proper exposure given your aperture).This mode is good for when you want to control depth of field (howmuch of the picture around the subject is focused)..

S - You pick the shutter speed, the camera picks the aperture (andtells you if it can't get a proper exposure given your shutterspeed). This mode is good for when you need to freeze subject motion(fast shutter speed) or emphasize it (slow shutter speed)..

In M mode, the camera leaves you on your own (its metering becomesnothing more than advice), and you can get the exposure as wrong asyou like.  ..

Comment #16

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

I try and mess with the options inthe screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure orwhatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they areeither blurry or have horrible color.

Blurry pictures suggest excessive subject motion, excessive hand shake, improper focus, or insufficient depth of field..

For the first two, it helps to increase shutter speed ... for the latter, it helps to stop down aperture (which will force you to decrease shutter speed, if the ISO remains constant)...

Comment #17

Whats Tv mode?.

Egordon99 wrote:.

The problem with Tv mode is if you select too fast of a shutterspeed, you might get an underexposed image if the lens doesn't openup enough/ISO isn't high enough. Most cameras will blink something inthe viewfinder to warn you of this, but it's easy to miss..

With Av mode, you open your lens up as wide as possible, and theresulting shutter speed is as fast as you can at that ISO..

I never use Tv, Av does everything I need (except for indoor flashwork where I go into M).

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Example: IF you need a fast shutter, set to A mode, then select thelowest f/stop that will get your desired speed. Likewise, if youwant everything in focus, set it to "S" mode, and use the slowestshutter speed you dare without getting camera-induced blur. (Actuallyyou should use a tripod).

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed. If you need depth of field,put it in A and pick a small aperture...

Paulhttp://PaulDRobertson.imagekind.com..

Comment #18

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok..So I get what they functions do now..but I still cant get adecent pic outta these functions..i try and mess with the options inthe screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure orwhatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they areeither blurry or have horrible color..all the dummy functions likethe ones with pictures..(the lady in hat,kid,sports guy)..those allwork well obviously ...ok say I'm in a house or building with very lowlighting..I should use A? ..what are some other function on the camthat could help me get a better pic..like should I crank upsaturation?sharpness and all that?.

OK, as Tom wrote about, there are different reasons for using different shooting modes. Stop trying everything all at once- think of these problems one by one..

If your concern is you're in a house with very low lighting you should:.

1. Put it in A mode, turn the control dial until you get the widest aperture (lowest f/#) for your lens. This lets in the most light..

2. Then try to take pic, and if still blurry, you still need a faster shutter speed than that Aperture will allow you, so... increase the ISO or use flash..

If your concern is about bad color of photos, that is a WB problem only..

1. Ask yourself where you are & what the lighting is coming from..

2. If you are outside, or if all light is from natural light, you should be OK with Auto white balance. If you are using flash, there's a flash WB setting. If your lighting is coming from a specific type of light (Tungsten=regular indoor lightbulbs, etc.) then switch the WB to the corresponding preset...

Comment #19

Do I have to use the flash all the time with the A M P S functions?..because whenever I take pics with them without the flash..even when I put it to the widest aperture and rite shutter speed and all that..they come out very dark so I always just pop the flash ...

JChristian wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok..So I get what they functions do now..but I still cant get adecent pic outta these functions..i try and mess with the options inthe screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure orwhatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they areeither blurry or have horrible color..all the dummy functions likethe ones with pictures..(the lady in hat,kid,sports guy)..those allwork well obviously ...ok say I'm in a house or building with very lowlighting..I should use A? ..what are some other function on the camthat could help me get a better pic..like should I crank upsaturation?sharpness and all that?.

OK, as Tom wrote about, there are different reasons for usingdifferent shooting modes. Stop trying everything all at once- thinkof these problems one by one..

If your concern is you're in a house with very low lighting you should:.

1. Put it in A mode, turn the control dial until you get the widestaperture (lowest f/#) for your lens. This lets in the most light..

2. Then try to take pic, and if still blurry, you still need a fastershutter speed than that Aperture will allow you, so... increase theISO or use flash..

If your concern is about bad color of photos, that is a WB problem only..

1. Ask yourself where you are & what the lighting is coming from..

2. If you are outside, or if all light is from natural light, youshould be OK with Auto white balance. If you are using flash,there's a flash WB setting. If your lighting is coming from aspecific type of light (Tungsten=regular indoor lightbulbs, etc.)then switch the WB to the corresponding preset...

Comment #20

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Do I have to use the flash all the time with the A M P Sfunctions?..because whenever I take pics with them without theflash..even when I put it to the widest aperture and rite shutterspeed and all that..they come out very dark so I always just pop theflash ...

JChristian wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok..So I get what they functions do now..but I still cant get adecent pic outta these functions..i try and mess with the options inthe screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure orwhatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they areeither blurry or have horrible color..all the dummy functions likethe ones with pictures..(the lady in hat,kid,sports guy)..those allwork well obviously ...ok say I'm in a house or building with very lowlighting..I should use A? ..what are some other function on the camthat could help me get a better pic..like should I crank upsaturation?sharpness and all that?.

OK, as Tom wrote about, there are different reasons for usingdifferent shooting modes. Stop trying everything all at once- thinkof these problems one by one..

If your concern is you're in a house with very low lighting you should:.

1. Put it in A mode, turn the control dial until you get the widestaperture (lowest f/#) for your lens. This lets in the most light..

2. Then try to take pic, and if still blurry, you still need a fastershutter speed than that Aperture will allow you, so... increase theISO or use flash..

If your concern is about bad color of photos, that is a WB problem only..

1. Ask yourself where you are & what the lighting is coming from..

2. If you are outside, or if all light is from natural light, youshould be OK with Auto white balance. If you are using flash,there's a flash WB setting. If your lighting is coming from aspecific type of light (Tungsten=regular indoor lightbulbs, etc.)then switch the WB to the corresponding preset..

No!1. make sure aperture is all the way open (lowest # in A mode)2. if that's not enough, increase ISO (highest # until pic not blurry).

Then, if neither of those did it, yes, there is not enough light for that lens/aperture/ISO combination, and your last resort is: use Flash...

Comment #21

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Whats Tv mode?.

Tv is shutter priority mode. Your camera has it as S..

DavidDallas, TX..

Comment #22

Ok well I'm starting to understand all this .im just trying tro figure about the numbers for the shutter speed..is it like the f stop ones..like lowers is more and higher is less?.

JChristian wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Do I have to use the flash all the time with the A M P Sfunctions?..because whenever I take pics with them without theflash..even when I put it to the widest aperture and rite shutterspeed and all that..they come out very dark so I always just pop theflash ...

JChristian wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok..So I get what they functions do now..but I still cant get adecent pic outta these functions..i try and mess with the options inthe screen ..like the WB ISO the flash comp and exposure orwhatver..but they just seem like reg horrible pics lol..like they areeither blurry or have horrible color..all the dummy functions likethe ones with pictures..(the lady in hat,kid,sports guy)..those allwork well obviously ...ok say I'm in a house or building with very lowlighting..I should use A? ..what are some other function on the camthat could help me get a better pic..like should I crank upsaturation?sharpness and all that?.

OK, as Tom wrote about, there are different reasons for usingdifferent shooting modes. Stop trying everything all at once- thinkof these problems one by one..

If your concern is you're in a house with very low lighting you should:.

1. Put it in A mode, turn the control dial until you get the widestaperture (lowest f/#) for your lens. This lets in the most light..

2. Then try to take pic, and if still blurry, you still need a fastershutter speed than that Aperture will allow you, so... increase theISO or use flash..

If your concern is about bad color of photos, that is a WB problem only..

1. Ask yourself where you are & what the lighting is coming from..

2. If you are outside, or if all light is from natural light, youshould be OK with Auto white balance. If you are using flash,there's a flash WB setting. If your lighting is coming from aspecific type of light (Tungsten=regular indoor lightbulbs, etc.)then switch the WB to the corresponding preset..

No!1. make sure aperture is all the way open (lowest # in A mode)2. if that's not enough, increase ISO (highest # until pic not blurry).

Then, if neither of those did it, yes, there is not enough light forthat lens/aperture/ISO combination, and your last resort is: useFlash...

Comment #23

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Do I have to use the flash all the time with the A M P Sfunctions?.

No. Only when there's insufficient light to take pictures using the available light at the aperture and/or shutter speed that you need..

..because whenever I take pics with them without theflash..even when I put it to the widest aperture and rite shutterspeed and all that..they come out very dark so I always just pop theflash ...

Sounds like you're taking pictures indoors, probably without cranking up ISO. The different modes can't invent more light for you ... they can only help you to make tradeoffs within the scope of what's possible..

So if you've already opened up the lens as wide as possible, and set shutter speed as low as you dare, and there's still not enough light, your only choices are to raise the ISO, add more light sources (e.g., flash), or live with underexposed pictures...

Comment #24

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok well I'm starting to understand all this .im just trying tro figureabout the numbers for the shutter speed..is it like the f stopones..like lowers is more and higher is less?.

The shutter speeds are just measurements of time... so if it says 20 that's 1/20th of a second, which is slower than 30 (1/30th sec) or 125 (1/125 sec) etc......

Comment #25

Did you at least read the manual? It might make it easier for others to help if the question can be narrowed down in scope. The manual should also address your questions on ISO, white balance, etc..

A good book to start is "Understanding Exposure." It should help with the basic understanding of the creative settings. Johnnyhttp://tuxbailey.zenfolio.com..

Comment #26

Ok so I'm looking at the D40 screen..theres two sets of numbers..one is 2.5" the other is F 3.5..the F is the Apeture correct?..so is the other(2.5") the shutter speed? or what?.

Tom_N wrote:.

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Do I have to use the flash all the time with the A M P Sfunctions?.

No. Only when there's insufficient light to take pictures using theavailable light at the aperture and/or shutter speed that you need..

..because whenever I take pics with them without theflash..even when I put it to the widest aperture and rite shutterspeed and all that..they come out very dark so I always just pop theflash ...

Sounds like you're taking pictures indoors, probably without crankingup ISO. The different modes can't invent more light for you ... theycan only help you to make tradeoffs within the scope of what'spossible..

So if you've already opened up the lens as wide as possible, and setshutter speed as low as you dare, and there's still not enough light,your only choices are to raise the ISO, add more light sources (e.g.,flash), or live with underexposed pictures...

Comment #27

The thing is I lost my manual on a roadtrip lol..so I been trying to mess with th cam myself.

ElanToXT wrote:.

Did you at least read the manual? It might make it easier for othersto help if the question can be narrowed down in scope. The manualshould also address your questions on ISO, white balance, etc..

A good book to start is "Understanding Exposure." It should helpwith the basic understanding of the creative settings. Johnnyhttp://tuxbailey.zenfolio.com..

Comment #28

GodSpeaks wrote:.

1: Read your camera manual2: Buy a good book on starting photography3: Practice4: Practice5: Practice.

This is directed to this poster and Gary602z and others of like mind....

An admitted novice asks some basic questions in the Beginners' Forum and this is your helpful, and informed, response ? If you don't want to give beginners a hand in the basics why are you here, just skulking around to throw out snarky platitudes?.

I've asked some pretty silly questions myself, and I plan to ask more, but it's discouraging to wade through bushwash responses like this.Brian..

Comment #29

If your pictures are dark, it may be that you have adjusted the exposure compensation to something under a normal exposure. To adjust the exposure compensation, push the +/- button (right below the on/off button on top of camera) and while it is pressed, turn the command wheel and on the screen at bottom will be an indicator showing what you are adjusting exposure to be. WB in some situations is off and you should do a manual WB setting. Indoor incandesent lighting is a weak point for the D40. I mentioned this before but you can fix the white balance in an image editing program. Most pics can be improved by simple editing after uploading to computer.Will..

Comment #30

IseeYouThruMylens wrote:.

Ok so I'm looking at the D40 screen..theres two sets of numbers..oneis 2.5" the other is F 3.5..the F is the Apeture correct?..so is theother(2.5") the shutter speed? or what?.

F/3.5 is the aperture ... that's probably about as wide open as a kit lens will go..

The " on the display is the camera's way of indicating full seconds. The camera is telling you that it will hold the shutter open for about 2 and 1/2 seconds when you take the picture. This is WAY too long for handholding, unless you want blurry pictures. For a 18-55mm non-image-stabilized lens, you would need shutter speeds of at least 1/30th of a second (on the wide end) to 1/125th of a second (on the telephoto end) to control blur...

Comment #31

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed..

By using A, and selecting a large aperture, you will automaticallyget the fastest shutter possible for that amount of light. If youblindly select a fast shutter speed, you risk underexposing the image..

I must agree with Paul Robertson. In bright light you can get away with A mode as you may get faster shutter than you need. But in low light, using A mode and select the largest aperture is not useful as the camera will select the largest aperture anyway. In low light, I would use S mode as shutter speed is the variable I need to control. If the light is too low that I cannot get the exposure I want, then I would need to increase the ISO or use flash, or both..

If you need depth of field, put it in A and pick a small aperture...

By picking the slowest shutter speed you dare use, you automaticallyget the smallest aperture for that amount of light. If you blindlyselect a small aperture, you risk both camera-induced blur andsubject-induced blur.

Remember, this is for scenes without BRIGHT light. I know thisseems backwards, but by controlling the variable you are NOTinterested in, you get the maximum/minimum variable you AREinterested in.

Each mode is there for a reason. Before taking pictures, I think which is the most important factor in the aperture triangle that I need to put more attention to and select the mode that gives me the easiest way to control it..

Just stick to what each mode is intended to. When DOF is most important, I use A mode. When shutter speed is the one I want to control, I use the S mode. When I want to control both Aperture and Shutter speed, M mode is my choice. I also use S or M mode in combination with auto ISO when I want to control the shutter speed and aperture and let the camera select the ISO for optimal exposure..

Rafy Sugirihttp://www.flickr.com/photos/rafysugiri/sets/http://bighugelabs.com/flickr/dna.php?username=79015415@N00..

Comment #32

Hc4n4 wrote:.

Dad_of_four wrote:.

Paul Robertson wrote:.

Seems a little backwards to me- if you need a fast shutter speed, putit in S and pick a fast shutter speed..

By using A, and selecting a large aperture, you will automaticallyget the fastest shutter possible for that amount of light. If youblindly select a fast shutter speed, you risk underexposing the image..

I must agree with Paul Robertson. In bright light you can get awaywith A mode as you may get faster shutter than you need. But in lowlight, using A mode and select the largest aperture is not useful asthe camera will select the largest aperture anyway. In low light, Iwould use S mode as shutter speed is the variable I need to control..

Not quite, it depends on how dark the "low light" is..

If you need to reduce movement blur in low light, using S mode is not the best approach, though it may be acceptable in brighter conditions. But when it's really dim, if a shutter speed is chosen that is too fast, the camera will need to select an aperture wider than is physically possible. Result - under exposure. Alternatively, if the chosen shutter speed is too low, the camera will close down the lens aperture for correct exposure - but you've now risked blur due to subject or camera motion. If you need an auto mode in low-light where there is any subject movement, then Aperture priority (set to widest aperture) is the optimal mode..

With one exception. Sometimes uneven lighting or varying background brightness can result in metering errors in auto mode (P, or A or S). Hence it may be better to use manual mode and set both aperture and shutter - the background may sometimes be incorrectly exposed, but the main subject will be the way you want it..

If the light is too low that I cannot get the exposure I want, then Iwould need to increase the ISO or use flash, or both..

I've found it useful to use a slowish shutter speed to capture the available light, together with a weaker flash to fill in a little. This way the atmosphere is not completely altered by the flash, and movement blur is minimised. This also allows more modest ISO setting (for example ISO 3200 without flash, ISO 800 with fill-in flash).Regards,Peter..

Comment #33

BLawson wrote:.

GodSpeaks wrote:.

1: Read your camera manual2: Buy a good book on starting photography3: Practice4: Practice5: Practice.

This is directed to this poster and Gary602z and others of likemind...An admitted novice asks some basic questions in the Beginners' Forumand this is your helpful, and informed, response ? If you don't wantto give beginners a hand in the basics why are you here, justskulking around to throw out snarky platitudes?I've asked some pretty silly questions myself, and I plan to askmore, but it's discouraging to wade through bushwash responses likethis..

If you think that response is supercilious, you're in trouble. It is excellent advice, as is a simple RTFM. Every aspect of the OP's question is answered in the manual. A book details the basics of photography. Practice improves the results..

Charlie Selfhttp://www.charlieselfonline.com.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #34

I must agree with Paul Robertson. In bright light you can get awaywith A mode as you may get faster shutter than you need. But in lowlight, using A mode and select the largest aperture is not useful asthe camera will select the largest aperture anyway. In low light, Iwould use S mode as shutter speed is the variable I need to control..

Not quite, it depends on how dark the "low light" is.If you need to reduce movement blur in low light, using S mode is notthe best approach, though it may be acceptable in brighterconditions. But when it's really dim, if a shutter speed is chosenthat is too fast, the camera will need to select an aperture widerthan is physically possible. Result - under exposure. Alternatively,if the chosen shutter speed is too low, the camera will close downthe lens aperture for correct exposure - but you've now risked blurdue to subject or camera motion. If you need an auto mode inlow-light where there is any subject movement, then Aperture priority(set to widest aperture) is the optimal mode..

The key here is to know what shutter speed to use, whether to avoid camera shake, to stop motion blur or to capture the motion. Without knowing the shutter speed to use, even if you use the A mode, choose the largest aperture you may take the shot at lower shutter speed resulting blurry picture or faster shutter speed than necessary with unnecessary high iso, although the picture is exposed as you want it..

I find many people has a habit of using A mode for many shooting conditions even when the variable they want to control is the shutter speed. Of course this way you can get the shutter speed you want but S mode is there for the purpose and it can make it easier..

Rafy Sugirihttp://www.flickr.com/photos/rafysugiri/sets/http://bighugelabs.com/flickr/dna.php?username=79015415@N00..

Comment #35

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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