Canon® T6 Fast Start

Lesson 5/18 - Basic Controls: Back of Camera


Canon® T6 Fast Start


Lesson Info

Basic Controls: Back of Camera

Working our way over onto the back side of the camera we have our large LCD screen. We have our viewfinder which is where we're going to be putting our eye to do most of our photography cause that's where this camera really works at its best. There is a diopter that controls the focusing of that viewfinder and so if it's not clear to your eyes that line of information down below you need to adjust the diopter for your eyes. There is a removable rubber eyecup that you can buy as a replacement item for about ten bucks if it wears out or gets dirty, or broken, or something like that. Should last you for many, many years but you can replace it if necessary. Now when you look through the viewfinder, let's talk about what you're going to see inside there. First off, the frame that you are going to see is 95% accurate, which means you're going to get 5% more around the edges of the frame. And so, everything that you see in the frame you will guarantee get on your final photograph, but you're ...

going to get just a little bit more, just as a margin of error for slight miscalculations in framing up your subject. You'll have just a little bit of wiggle room, later on. Next up are the auto focus points. This camera has nine focusing points and we're going to talk more about the focusing section coming up in a very, very soon section. But there's nine different points, you want to be very aware of what is in those points because the camera needs contrast to focus, so it needs texture, lines, light and dark within those boxes, in order to focus. LED information is the information line at the bottom of the camera which tells you the critical and most important shooting data of the camera. Working our way from left to right we have auto exposure lock, which is a button on the back of the camera that locks exposure while we move it from one position to the next. We'll be talking more about that. The lightning bolt indicates the flash is ready to fire. There is a high-speed sync mode that is available on certain flash units from Canon that will allow you to use a very high shutter speed when using the camera. Flash exposure compensation allows you to adjust the power of the flash. I'm going to have some examples of that here in a moment. We then have our shutter speeds and apertures, these are our most critical bits of data. Along with our light meter exposure level which will tell us if we are over or underexposed. Highlight tone priority is a mode where the camera goes in and adjusts your exposure. I'm going to show you some examples and give you some explanations of who would want to use this or not. It's kind of something that not everyone wants to have turned on so they put a warning in here to make sure that you knew you were using this when it was turned on. ISO is the sensitivity setting of the image sensor on the camera. And we're going to talk more about this and how to set it in a bit, but this lets you know where that is. Along with shutter speeds and aperture that's one of those three critical points of data when determining your exposure. We have a couple of warnings, whether you've adjusted the white balance or whether you're shooting in black and white, something that you would really want to know about, you don't want to leave the camera in that mode all the time, for the most part. The maximum burst is the number of images that you can shoot right now, all in a row. And that's going to depend on a couple of the camera settings. So your camera and your friend's T6 camera may say something different, as I say, we're going to talk more about that when we get into the image quality settings of the camera. And then finally, there is a green dot that's a focus confirmation, so if you want to confirm focus, that light will illuminate once your camera has achieved sharp focus. Alright, next up on the camera is the live view and movie record button, which is a kind of completely different way of operating the camera, so let's talk a little bit more closely about how this works. So first off we're going to discuss the live view portion of this. By pressing this button you are going to be able to see what the camera is pointed at because light's going to come in straight to the image sensor and show it to you on the back screen of the camera, which makes it very easy to see when the camera is held hand length away from you or it's on a tripod, for instance. If it's in this mode, you can press the display button to cycle through a variety of different displays that shows more or less information, depending on what you want to see in that frame. The "Q" button is the quick menu and this will allow you to get in and change some of the most important settings on the camera, it's essentially a shortcut button. And you can go in and change the focusing and the white balance, and a variety of other settings that we're going to continue to talk about in this class, but it's a nice shortcut button. The one thing that I do want to highlight right now is the autofocus system when you are in this live view mode, because the standard focusing mode, when you're using the viewfinder with your eye up to the viewfinder, is very, very quick and is been something that Canon has been evolving for more than 30 years at this point. And when it goes into the live view mode the camera is just a little bit different and I just want to explain why. So, normally the camera comes in to the SLR and goes to the mirror. The mirror is kind of unusual because it's partially silvered, which allows light through that mirror. Now the reason it allows light through that mirror is for focusing reasons, it bounces light onto a secondary mirror down to an autofocusing system and that is how your camera focuses when you have the camera up to your eye. So when you put the camera in the live view mode, the mirror goes up and then the light will come into the sensor. And the autofocus sensor is no longer doing any good. So it's using the contrast off of the sensor and it's not as fast in the focusing system. And so there are a couple of different systems that you can use for focusing. There is a FlexiZone-Single, single, a face detection mode, and then a quick mode where it actually turns off the system, returns to the standard system, and then focuses. My preference in this case is the FlexiZone-Single, which is the little bracket, and you can move the bracket with the up, down, and left, right keys on the back of the camera to adjust where you want to focus. I guess the main thing that I wanted to say here is that when you are in the live view focusing the camera is not real quick to focus. It's not bad. But it's just not as quick as it is in the normal mode, and so this would be a terrible mode for doing action or sports photography. If you're working from a tripod or a little bit slower based subjects that are not moving around much then it's a perfectly acceptable mode. If you do want to record video, once you're in the video mode, remember, you have to turn the camera to the video mode, then you would press that to go in there, and so let's go ahead and do a quick little demo in here. My camera, I'm going to put it in a program mode, it's a pretty simple automatic mode, and I'm going to hit this (shutter clicks) and we go into the wide view mode. If we want to go into the quick menu we can go in and we can change a whole bunch of these different features. And we're going to talk more about these as we go through the camera, but the shortcut to the autofocus is the single, the live mode, the face detection mode and the lock mode. Now I want to show you how it focuses, so I'm actually going to come over here and grab something to focus on. And we'll put it right here in the foreground, and we're going to move the camera back just a little bit here. And so you can see there's a box in the middle of the frame. And I can focus on this box. (camera whirring) (camera beeps) And you could see it took a little bit of time to focus. I'm going to move this guy just a little bit off to the side there. And then we've some cameras there in the background, and I'm going to focus on them. (camera whirring) (camera beeps) And it achieved that. Let's give it a little bit more telephoto look here, and so we're going to move the focusing point over, and one of the things you'll notice is that with these standard lenses they're a little bit on the noisy side. Now notice I'm going to get the box over something that has lots of contrast and so I'm going to lean in a little bit so you can hear the microphone. (camera whirring) (camera beeps) And so it takes a little bit of time, it's not the fastest in its focus. (camera whirring) (camera beeps) And so let me just give you an example. I'm going to change to the quick mode. And so it's in the quick mode now. (shutter clicks) So what the camera does is it switches back to its standard focusing. (shutter clicks) And I'm going to move it over here, and watch how fast (shutter clicks) it immediately moves over very, very quickly but it's a little disrupting because it's turning the, it's closing the mirror. (shutter clicks) And returning to the standard position (shutter clicks) And then coming back. So it's a little disruptive, and so it's quick, but it's very, very disruptive. I don't have a face out here to work with, but it can also track faces and it can do a reasonably good job. Some lenses are better than others when it comes to the speed of the focusing. And so just be prepared for a little bit slower performance when in the live view mode. And when you're done with live view you can simply hit that button and it returns the camera back to its standard, normal operations. Alright, what do we got next? Auto exposure lock, and also flash exposure lock. And so, let me do a little demo here on this one for you as well. In this case I'm going to put the camera in aperture value and so I'm going to set a particular aperture of, let's say, F eight. F eight and you can see, the camera's at 1/5 of a second. But if I pan the camera around our studio here a little bit, I'm getting different shutter speeds and different apertures. If I want to lock that number in, that little asterisk button will lock in, I may not be able to show it to you while I'm doing this, let me try hitting the display. (camera whirring) (camera beeps) And it would lock it to you in the view finder I can't show it to you on the back of the camera I don't think here unless there's anything else. No, I don't think I'm going to be able to show it to you on the back of the camera. But it does lock that shutter speed in so that I could lock an exposure in and move the camera. Now the key thing is that I have to leave my thumb down on the button, and then I'm going to press it in, it locks in, and then I can move it around and it holds that shutter speed wherever I tilt the camera. An example of when you might want to use this is during a sunset. You want to photograph the sunset, but if you point it straight at the sun the brightness of the sun is going to throw off your exposure and so you might point the camera a little away from the sun, get the sun out of the picture, just barely, lock your exposure in and then move it back in the frame. Now the F-E-L stands for flash exposure lock, and let me give you a little example on this one. I'm going to go back to my subject really close, right in front of the camera here. And so, in this case the flash needs to be up and so we have the flash up, and if I just shoot a photo right here (shutter clicks) It's going to fire and it's going to try to give me the best lighting possible on this subject. But it has a hard time figuring things out and if it only had a little bit of information, and by pressing in this button, it fires the flash to do a test exposure, and if I leave my finger in, it's figuring the flash out a little bit better (shutter clicks) And then when I take the photo it should give me a little bit better quality photo. Now it varies a little bit, so let's take a look at how this looked. This is the second one, and this is the first image. So it went a little bit brighter on the second one. I actually think the first one looks a little bit better. And so it may work better or worse in some situations, but the idea is that you do a test flash, the camera kinda figures things out, so that when you take the next photo (shutter clicks) It does a better job. It's a feature that I'm guessing that most people don't use. I'm going to guess most people who don't watch this even know about it, cause you've got to dive pretty deep into the instruction manual to figure that out. But it can be more useful in portrait photography where a lot of times people get a little bit too much flash on their face. I'm going to show you how to adjust that manually when we get to some of those flash settings that I've talked about. So that's the A-E-L, F-E-L button. Next up, the focus points button, AF focus points, and so this allows us to go in and select different focus points and choose them. So we have nine different focus points and we can change them by pressing this button and then turning the main dial or using the cross keys on the back of the camera. So let me go ahead and give you a little demo on that one and this really doesn't really matter what mode you're in, as long as you're in one of the more manual modes. So I'll have my camera in the program mode and let me hit the display button so that you can see what's going on on the back of the camera. I hit the thumb button and there's our nine focusing points. One option is to turn the dial and if I just keep turning, I rotate through the selections and it goes from one to all of them. I can also use the buttons on the back of the camera. So I can select anything left, right, up, or down. And if I go back to the middle and I hit the set button, it goes between one and all of them. And so the set button always goes either middle or all of the buttons right there. And normally, I like to leave the camera, let's turn it back on, and so you just have to activate it with that little thumb button right there in the corner. I like to leave it in the center mode. Camera is very good at focusing there, it does the best on sensitivity, and it's right in the middle so it's easy to work with in that case and so I can be very deliberate about where the camera is focusing. Next up, big button on the back of the camera that does three different things. One thing is the aperture value button, we saw this earlier when we were controlling our manual exposures. We were pressing this button and turning the top dial to change our apertures. But it also does something called exposure compensation, and we'll see more about it, it does a trash can in playback as well. So the exposure compensation is where the camera is in the program mode, the time value mode, or the aperture value mode and we want to adjust the exposure. So let's take a look. Normally zero means it's a normal exposure, and anything on the minus side means it's going to be darker. It'd be stopped by one, two, or three stops darker or one, two, or three stops brighter. And so you can take a series of photos and you can adjust it where you want to with program, time value, or aperture value. So as an example, let's go ahead and do a little demo here. I'm going to leave the camera in the program mode so the camera is in control of shutter speeds and apertures, and I'm just going to let it do its own thing and I'm going to take one photo. Actually I'll give it something to focus on here. (camera beeps) (shutter clicks) Alright, so there's our photo, that's fine. Now what I'm going to do is I'm going to hit the AV button, I'm going to hold in on it while I turn the dial and I'm going to go down to minus two just to make this really extreme. And so this picture is going to be dark. (shutter clicks) By two stops. Yep, that's definitely dark. So now I'm going to dial it back to zero, and then I'm going to go up to plus two, and you'll see the same thing or very similar in the viewfinder. And I'll go up to plus two, this one's going to be really bright. And so let's play back these three images. This one is plus two and it actually says plus two right up here in the display. And you can change the different displays and I'll talk about that in a moment. But we can see it right there on the top, that's plus two. This one's minus two. And this one doesn't say anything, so this one must be zero. And so, one of the key things on this is you want to remember to reset this to zero. Cause if you leave it just a little bit off everything's going to be just a little bit dark, not much, just a little bit, and it's going to say right up there in the corner minus 1/3, right there at the top of the screen. And so I'm going to make sure that I get this set back to zero, right there. So that's exposure compensation. Now that's going to work, for instance, I have the camera in the program mode right now, and you can use it in TV and AV and if I press this button right there you can see I have access to it. But if I put it in the fully-automated mode, the green A plus mode, it doesn't allow you to use this and you can actually see if I turn this back for you. This function is not selectable in the current shooting mode. And so I kinda consider a lot of those seeing modes. Let me put it in the sports and action mode. Okay, sports and action mode, and can I use exposure compensation? Nope, it's all disabled. So there's a lot of child safety locks in those scene modes, which is why I prefer to get up into the more semi-automatic or manual modes, gives you more control over the camera. So that is exposure compensation. Very useful tool. Remember to reset it back to zero. That's one of the most important things. Next up is the display button. And I've already talked a little bit about this if you want to look at the display on the back of the camera, you can press the display button to turn that on and off and it will also work when we get into the live view modes. And so if we go into live view real quick, we can press the display, and we can see more or less information depending on what our needs are. And so, just reminded, nothing is ever hurt by hitting the display button. And it just cycles through all the different options. Alright, so on the four-way controller on the back of the camera, each one of those controls directly controls a particular feature of the camera that is pretty important. The first one, the top one, is controlling the ISO, which is the sensitivity of the sensor. So let's take a look at some examples of photos taken at different ISOs on this camera. And so our standard scene here, and we're going to blow it up so that we can see the details, sharpness, and clarity of this. Now the camera is at its best, at ISO 100. You can increase the sensitivity so that it works under lower light conditions and can give you faster shutter speeds, but there's a point at which it starts becoming lower and lower in quality, quite noticeably. And it starts getting this noise in the image, which looks a little bit like grain from the days of film. And with any of the ISO settings I'd say that there's three really important settings you want to know. One, what is the lowest setting? Cause that's the best quality, so that's 100, and that's where you want to try to keep it most of the time. The next setting is, where do you really start to notice a drop off in quality from it being very good? And as I look at it on our very large monitor here, I would say jumping up to ISO it definitely starts taking a big drop off there from 1600 and so, somewhere around 800 or 1600 it starts taking a turn for the worse. And by 6400 it's looking pretty bad. 6400 and 12,800 don't look good and I wouldn't want to use those unless I absolutely was desperate for setting the sensor that high, I was in a super, super dark environment and I needed a faster shutter speed. And so, you should be pretty free using the camera between one and 800, and be a little careful between 16 and and I would really try to avoid 6400 and higher. But always, I'd be trying to keep the camera as low as possible. So if you can shoot at 100, by all means do it that's where you're going to get the cleanest information off of the sensor. Over to the right hand side, autofocusing mode, we have one shot, AI focus, and AI servo so let's talk about these three different ways that our cameras can focus. When you press halfway down it activates the focusing system. The typical shooting situation is for still subjects that are not moving around. Your camera is in the one shot mode for this and it focuses, it figures out the focus, and then it stops adjusting, so that you can recompose and take a photograph. The other type of scenario is action photography where subjects are moving, towards you or away from you, and this is called AI servo and this is where the camera will track subjects moving towards you and away from you and it's perfect for sports photography. Now the one in between, which is called AI focus, which stands for artificial intelligent focus, is going to try to judge whether the subject is moving or not moving. And this is one of the areas where I think you are probably a much better judge than the camera is, at judging whether you're shooting action or not. And so I don't recommend AI focus in most situations. I think most people can make a judgment call as to whether they're shooting action or not. And so most photography, for basic photography, I would recommend the one shot mode. When you get into shooting sports and action, wildlife moving around, that's when you'll use the AI servo mode. On the bottom, WB stands for white balance and this is the color of light that you are working in, because your camera doesn't know what the light source is. It may need a little help from you in directing what type of light is illuminating the scene. We have a number of natural lighting, like daylight, cloudy, and shade. We have a number of artificial lights. The one that's most different is tungsten light. So if you have tungsten lights in your living room and you have your camera set to cloudy your images are going to look very, very orange. If you set it to tungsten, they're going to look white and clean and normal, the way our own eyes automatically adjust for different color light sources. We do have a couple of other settings that you can go into, one is a custom one where you take a test shot and you're able to balance it according to what you photograph on a white sheet of paper. And the one that most people use is auto white balance, and this is where the camera will look at the situation and figure it out for you. Now auto white balance, first off, does a very good job but it's not always perfect. And so if you are shooting with unusual lights, perhaps you're shooting in a theater that has a lot of tungsten lights, that would be a good time to change it over to tungsten. So if you have either unusual lighting or you're just not getting the lighting that you want, the color of light, you can change some of that here in the white balance. And so by pressing that button you'll see these different symbols and the different examples of what they are going to do. And so, normally, as I say, I leave the camera in auto white balance. If it's funky lighting, and it doesn't look quite right when I check my images out, I change it at that point. Next up is our drive, or self-timer button and this controls what happens when we press halfway down on the shutter release. Normally, I like my camera in the single mode so that I just take one picture at a time. When I'm shooting sports I want it in the continuous mode. If I want to get a group shot, for instance, I'll give it in the 10-second mode. If I'm working on a tripod and I want to trigger the shutter but don't want to be touching the camera I'll use the two second mode. Now, if I do have a group of people I would probably more likely use the continuous self timer. And let me just show you real quickly what that's going to do and why you would want to do that. So, on the back of the camera let's go ahead and hit the drive button. And we're going to go over and select the continuous shot. And here you get to select how many pictures you take, and I think it's just between two and ten. And I'm going to have it select four. And so now I'm going to press down on the shutter release and I believe it's going to give me. Well, did I actually get it set or not? I probably forgot to hit set. Okay, so now it's activated. So now, (camera beeps) it's going to fire. (camera beeps) We've got ten seconds (camera beeps) You can see the light blinking here. So the self timer will blink (camera beeps) and then when it gets down to the final two seconds. It'll turn steady, (camera beeps rapidly) and it's going to do four shots. I had it set to do two. And so it did two shots that time. But if I'm doing a group shot I will often do three or four, that way if somebody blinks, it'll take a series of them. And so it's a great mode for doing group shots. Yeah, I did have it set to two, I was going to set it to four. And so now it's set to four (camera beeps) And so now, (camera beeps) It'll do the ten seconds (camera beeps) It's beeping. (camera beeps) You can turn that beep off, (camera beeps) I'll show you how to do that later on. The light will turn steady (camera beeps) for the final two seconds. (camera beeps rapidly) And then four pictures. (shutter clicks) And so somebody blinks, not a problem, you'll probably get it right on one of those four images. And so I'm going to flip it back to single shot, cause that's where most people leave the camera most of the time. Right in the middle is the set button. As I say, when we get into the menu system we will use that to confirm our settings. That's what I forgot to do in that last section when I wanted to confirm the continuous self timer shot setting.

Class Description

The Canon EOS Rebel T6 camera is the perfect DSLR if you're looking to move up from taking pictures on your smartphone. This class will give you an in-depth instruction on how to make this transition easily so that you can capture high quality images. John will guide you through the features, menus, and buttons on your camera, giving you the confidence you need to take pictures like a pro. You’ll learn how to:

  • Use the EOS Rebel T6's broad range of light sensitivity settings to take perfect images in any light
  • Master the wireless capabilities so that you can send images to any compatible devices
  • Create high quality videos with full HD quality
If you've just purchased this camera, or are thinking about buying it, this in-depth class will help everyone you love the Canon EOS Rebel T6 camera.



This class was great! I've had my Canon Rebelt6 for a year and a half and now I finally feel like I know how to use it! He does a great job reviewing all of the functions of this camera.


This class is really straightforward and easy to understand. Very helpful if you get impatient reading the camera manual and don't know which settings to use in which scenarios.