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Shutter priority - aperture priority - or manual


Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
3 Sep 2006 6:02PM

Quote:All seems far far far easier then meddling around with AE-Lock and EV compensation...


Agree with that. It's usually Av for me except when I am using the camera as a light meter. Then I use Av to take the reading and M to set it.

However, for candids and anything else requiring quick reactions, I find I can usually trust P to get a decent enough result. It is a "worry-free" setting.
ade_mcfade 17 15.2k 216 England
3 Sep 2006 6:12PM
I was an Av man, but once I'd sussed out how the meter works, it's just so easy to set to how you want it, in M mode, and get the right result every time. I've never used Av since.

For example, at weddings I usually get the meter reading off the bride's dress, cause I don't want that to blow out, and just work from that. If you're on Av and move the spot meter a little, say onto the black suit of the groom, then the exposure goes haywire - you'll get a 4 or 5 stops longer exposure.....

Just easier to sort out what you want in terms of exposure, set it and do a test shot, then for get about it.

I've tried to convince loads of people on this, and fail every time - maybe it's just too hard a concept for most? Smile
doczoc 18 773
3 Sep 2006 6:15PM
But surely if you have a wide dynamic range in an image, AE lock allows you to expose for whatever part you feel is most important. Using M means you have to check your exposure (unless you are a genius and can bag it every time or have spent some time taking meter readings anyway)after you taken the shot. Seems no easier than using Av and AE lock to me. Just a diferent way to get the job done!
miptog 16 3.6k 65 United Kingdom
3 Sep 2006 6:18PM
Having read Andy Rouse’s books I used Av. Recently I have been using P, and find in most cases it works. Any adjustment is via EV compensation. The choice is down to personal preference. I do wish that camera metering is more accurate, and for one would be happy just to use it in P mode. What I have also found is that although the light may be constant, the subject I am shooting varies considerably (highlights, shadows, dynamic range) that I have to meter for each shot.
doczoc 18 773
3 Sep 2006 6:21PM
So Ade in your example above you'd take a reading off the dress, make the adjustments in camera, recompose take shot (check exposure first time) and away you go.

Using Av I'd take a meter off the dress, press AE lock, recompose take shot (check exposure first time).

There seems little difference in it. You'd have to readjust your M settings depending on where the bride is, if your are taking shots of ushers etc. Why not use the tools available?

EDIT BTW I'm not just trying to argue the toss, I was just wondering if there's something I'm missing?
Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
3 Sep 2006 6:25PM
I go for what is least "fiddly". Av or even P works most of the time.

With digital you can get a good idea of whether your shot has worked. It is only if I can see the auto mode hasn't worked that I would bother with the manual route.

Why buy a dog and bark yourself, as the old saying goes?
javam 17 1.1k 19 United Kingdom
3 Sep 2006 7:04PM
I learnt how to set exposure the hard way with a Zenith B (no metering) but now I see no point in not trusting the camera's brain for most situations.

Hyper programme, 3 metering modes, ae lock and exposure compensation give me all the control I need for tricky bits.

I can pick the shutter speed or the aperture shifting it to AV or TV, without going near the mode dial. If it is a particularly tricky exposure situation with a limited time window, I auto bracket.

I can count the number of times I have had to resort to manual on one hand.
User_Removed 16 4.9k England
3 Sep 2006 7:45PM
I use M, S and A.... Does anyone set a Custom exposure, just to dial up when needed. I never have. What would be a useful one to set?.
Col
Kris_Dutson 19 8.2k 1 England
3 Sep 2006 8:00PM
The only custom functions on a camera I would find useful would be, 'Roll fag' & 'Make tea'.

Wink
ade_mcfade 17 15.2k 216 England
3 Sep 2006 8:05PM

Quote:Using Av I'd take a meter off the dress, press AE lock, recompose take shot (check exposure first time).


....which is fantastic - but on the next shot, you've got to do the same again, and the shot after that.... got to take the reading and lock AGAIN...

if you just do it in manual, you take one reading and can take 1000 shots without even considering what the exposure is

Ok, if the light changes suddenly, you have to change the settings... but in most situations that's not been a problem for me.


You've got to ask yourself the question... "how hard is it to take a meter reading in M mode, and set the exposure accordingly?".

I just assumed that most people would say "Dead Easy", but maybe not. Does this mean that people don't know how to use their meter, or is it just laziness?

In any scene, I tend to look at the thing I want exposing correctly (a face, a car, a pint of lager.... whatever) - as in I want that bit to look "correctly exposed" - and point the spot meter to that bit, made s decision on the aperture I want, then dial in the shutter till the meter gets to the point I think it should be (using the Zone system).

You can do it manually or with Av, but if you go about things that way, you'll find M is easier, lots easier.


Smile
Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
3 Sep 2006 9:31PM

Quote:Ok, if the light changes suddenly, you have to change the settings... but in most situations that's not been a problem for me.


For a lot of people, who do not work in studios with constant lighting, the light does change and the exposure requirement can change too even on slight reframing... not everyone bothers with tripods!

What is easier than setting on (say) f5.6 and letting the camera do the hard work? Or even setting it on P if you feel so inclined.

M probably stands for "macho" in the minds of some.....

Grin
doczoc 18 773
3 Sep 2006 9:42PM

Quote:You can do it manually or with Av, but if you go about things that way, you'll find M is easier, lots easier.




Well it's obviously working, you've got a cracking PF
Teessider 15 365
4 Sep 2006 10:08AM
I use manual. My camera does sometimes say its exposing by the right amount when its under/over exposing, and I like to control the aperture when doing studio work so I can control depth of field more.
ade_mcfade 17 15.2k 216 England
4 Sep 2006 10:51AM
Cheers David Smile

But to go back - it is horses for courses, I'm not saying that Av is bad, but for me, my hit rate in terms of getting the exposure "how I want it" (which may well be underexposed for many of you - but the point is it's my choice) is not far off 100% now. It was more like 50-70% when I used Av.

I get lots of pants compositions which hit the bin, but rarely get any blown out highlights or overly dark shots.

I spent time reading books on photography every day on the bus and eventually came to the conclusion that maybe it was worth learning how to use "M" - I think "Perfect Exposure" by Jim Zuckerman was the book the spelled it out to me most.

He spells it out easily, and basically has a whole book that just repeats the same point on every page. It drummed it pretty well, but for a good few months afterwards, I was getting things wrong still.

But it eventually clicked, and it was a real epiphany. I look at things differently now - it's a bit like when Neo sussed out the matrix and started dodging bullets Smile

It applies as much with a tricky wedding shot as a lush landscape, a bowl of fruit or a horse galloping towards you.

But if you're happy with Av, keep using it. I was for a long time, but I just feel in control now I can take control of the exposure.

Maybe it's the techy side of me just wanting to know how stuff works.... ?
theorderingone 17 2.4k
4 Sep 2006 10:57AM
Aperture priority with spot metering.

I have the rear dial set up for quick exposure adjustments and use exposure lock if the lighting is settled enough.

I use manual when shooting with flash.

I always find this give me plenty of control, and at speed.

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