Mode Dial Operations
The mode dial on the camera is one of the most important controls on the camera overall, because this controls the shutter speeds, apertures, and a lot of other features on the camera. So let's go ahead and take a closer look at what the mode dial does. Before we get in to the individual settings, they are in three different groups in my mind as far as manual settings that you have a fair bit of manual control over the camera. The auto modes are gonna be some simplified setups where the camera's gonna be controlling shutter speeds, apertures, and it may also limit you in many of the menus and other options that you might want to turn on and off, and so if you are getting in to using the camera manually, you're gonna wanna be in one of those manual modes. And then there is a special movie mode, so when you are shooting movies there's kind of a whole separate set of things that are going on and you can have the camera tuned to that when you get there. Let's start with the simplest setup ...
on the camera and work our way a little bit more manual. So, the simplest setup is the A+ mode, and this stands for the Scene Intelligent Auto mode, and this is where the camera will identify different types of scenes that you have the camera pointed at and it will adjust shutter speeds and apertures for that situation. And it does a pretty good job in this mode. And so, if you want to hand the camera to a friend, or somebody who doesn't know how to use the camera and you want to keep things as simple as possible, this would be the mode that I would recommend using because it's gonna give you good, basic, generic photos for pretty much anything that you're going to shoot in as far as the camera settings. From kind of a more serious photographer standpoint, the thing that I don't like about it is that it may recognize a portrait, but it doesn't always go as far as I might want it to go, knowing how cameras could be set up in the portrait mode. And so there's nothing the camera is doing here that you can't do yourself without a little bit of knowledge and time to make those settings. And so, if you don't have the knowledge, if you don't have the time, you can let the camera do it for you and it's gonna do a good, basic job. While you're in this mode ... Something we're gonna see on a lot of these different modes. On the back of the camera there's a Q button, which stands for Quick Menu, and it's gonna give you a shortcut to a few things that you might want to get to in the menu system. And so if you press this button you're gonna get access to the image quality, movie recording size, the Drive Mode, the self-timer, and the Still Image Aspect Ratio. And so, let me just show you real quickly on my camera here. So let's go ahead and make sure my camera is turned on. And so if you have it in the A+ mode, which I do up here. And then I hit the Q button in the back of the camera, you'll see that my listings over here on the left side. Image Quality, movie recording size, Drive Mode, self-timer, remote control, and Still Image Aspect Ratio. And so if I want to go in here and change something like the Drive Mode, I can take it from single, and I'm just using this pad here on the left side to navigate left and right. I can choose low speed continuous, high speed continuous. Let's say I want to have it in low speed continuous, I would just hit the set button. The Q and the set button are one and the same, so I'll hit set and now it's in the low speed Drive Mode, so I can shoot a series of photos. Let's zoom in on something that makes sense here. There we go. (clicking) And it's firing off pictures at about ... That sounds like about three frames a second. And so if you want to change something else in here, you can go up and go to Image Quality, you can shoot raw instead of JPEG. We'll talk more about all of these features in detail a little bit later on. But, just for right now, you can go in and change a few things in there. And so the A+ mode, I kind of consider it as the ... Kind of a child's crib or a playpen. It's a safe and confined area. You can't go too wrong in that mode. It will limit you, though, on many of the things that you may want to do, for those of you who know about photography and want to make specific settings. Like if you said, "Oh, I want to use a particular shutter speed." You can't really do that in this mode here. It's designed to be a very, very simple mode. All right, let's move on to the next one. This is an unusual one. This is the Hybrid Auto mode where it records four seconds of video that happen right before you shooting a still image on here, and it's gonna give you an interesting collection of moments leading up to the photographs that you're taking. Now, if you go in to the Q menu, you'll still have access to a couple of different modes that are in here. And so I wanted to show you what this looks like, and so I went out and I shot some photos myself, and I want to show you this short video of what this looks like. So there's your four seconds and your still photo and you can see your final moments before shooting a photo. And so it's ... It's kind of interesting. Be kind of good with group photos as people get ready in a group, or somebody smiling, taking a portrait. And so you end up with a video and still images from what you're shooting. And so, in this particular case, I took four images. I ended up with about a 20 second video and four still images. And so it's kind of an interesting mode. I don't know that I would want to have it on all the time, but it is kind of interesting to do once in a while. Let me do another little demo right here with you. So I'm gonna go ahead and get my camera in to this Hybrid Auto mode right here. And so, in this case, what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna have my camera on wide, and it's recording images, or it's recording video right now in to the buffer of the camera, and it only holds it for four seconds. But, so I'm gonna adjust the camera's positioning. I'm gonna zoom in, and I'm gonna take a photo. That's all I'm gonna do. Now, when I go back to play back, what I'm gonna have is I'm going to have ... Let's see, it's a little hard to tell because I have ... I've been shooting the same thing. And so I should have a still image and a video. So I'm gonna press Play here, so you can see the last few moments of that shot and then the still image from it as well. There's the video, and it plays it again and again. And so, experiment a little bit with that. That's gonna be fun to use here and there. There are very few cameras that have that feature. And so it might be kind of an interesting technique to use in just the right location, but once again, special purpose little mode there, but kind of a fun one. All right, next up is Creative Assist mode, and this is an area that's just fully automatic, but with a few more options for playing around. And so what they do is they give you some controls for background sharpness or bluriness, brightness, contrast, and saturation, and a couple of other modes, so that you can control the look of your photo without doing too much harm. And so it's a way of playing safely in the photographic realm. And so I decided to go out and shoot some experimental photos with this. So, first option is you can control the brightness, and if you want to make your picture brighter or darker, you don't know anything about shutter speeds or apertures, this is a simple way just to say, "I want it brighter, I want it a little bit darker." You can control the contrast, and it really depends on the type of scene that you're gonna shoot as to which would be better to use. You'll be the best judge of that when you see your images right in the viewfinder or on the back of the camera. Sometimes we want more saturation on a landscape type shot, but sometimes we want a little less saturation when we're doing people shots. It varies from situation to situation. Color tone on it, we can give it a little bit more of a cool, blue tone, or a little bit more of a warm, yellowish, red tone to it. Might evoke slightly different types of feelings, depending on the type of photograph. If you're in to black and white photography, you can shoot black and white. You can also do it with a sepia tone. Little bit of a brown tone to it. Give it that old timey look. We can also add in other colors if you just want to be funky, or you want to have something a little bit different. And so that's all in the Creative Assist mode. And so, let me show you real quickly on how we're gonna do that, and let's make sure my camera's in the Creative Assist mode to start with, and then, of course, we just hit the Q button back here, which we've been doing a lot lately, to go in to the Quick menu, and we can come down here ... Let's play around with saturation on here. So, if we want to make those yellow bananas super yellow, we can give a ... Make it go over to the right for vivid, and we can go down to neutral and you can really see those bananas changing in color as we go back and forth. And of course, normally, you're gonna wanna have this set in the middle. And so we have all of our different options. You can go to black and white, and I'm gonna leave it just as standard. And so this allows you to play, in a very simple and safe way, with the look of your photographs now. I'm hoping that ... You know, I'm kind of in to serious photography and I like to see other people get in to it, because they really get control of it. You'll find that this is a very limited size playground for you to play with, but it is very easy to work without having a lot of complicated terms. And so it's a great way for somebody to kind of get introduced in to the types of changes and ways of controlling images right in the camera. Being able to see them right there in the back of the camera, so it's a nice mode to have on there for some people for some of the time. Next up is the Scene mode, and the camera in the Scene Recognition mode was able to recognize a number of modes, but sometimes it's not the best at recognizing all the situations, and if you can tell it, "Hey, this is the particular situation that it's in," the camera's gonna be able to do a little bit better job in that situation. So, how do you do that? Of course, the Q button, the Quick menu, and you can go in and you can change those little Scene modes on there. So let's go ahead and do that on my camera. Change it over in to the Scene mode on top. Hit the Q button on the back of the camera, and if I can remember my controls, Q button here. First item on the top left is our Different Scene modes, and so if we want to shoot sports we look for the action figure. We got food photography, got a lot of different options. I'm not gonna go through all of these, but what they're doing is they're adjusting shutter speeds, apertures, potentially the ISO, the focusing system, perhaps white balance, and maybe a few other things in there that I'm not sure of. One thing I do know is that there's nothing the camera is controlling or setting or doing that you can't do yourself without the knowledge and time to go ahead and set it. But if you want a quick way to get it in to a sports mode, and you don't know a lot about what you should be doing, this would be a pretty safe and easy way to do it. Now, of course you can go up and down and go to other features in here. We will discuss all of these features as we go throughout the class, but the main one I wanted to talk about was just the regular scene mode here that you could select. And so, if you know you're gonna go to a national park and shoot nature photos, you might want to put it in the landscape scene. In that particular one it's gonna give you a little bit more contrast and a little bit more saturation. When you go to the portrait mode it's gonna give you a little bit less saturation. So it really depends on the types of things that you're going to shoot as to the way it's going to work with the images there. And so it's a good, simple way of telling the camera and giving it some specific information about what you are shooting. So, good mode to play around with a little bit. Makes things very, very easy to work with.