Skip to main content

Fujifilm X-T3 Fast Start

Lesson 4 of 23

Camera Controls: Top Deck

John Greengo

Fujifilm X-T3 Fast Start

John Greengo

Starting under


Get access to this class +2000 more taught by the world's top experts

  • 24/7 access via desktop, mobile, or TV
  • New classes added every month
  • Download lessons for offline viewing
  • Exclusive content for subscribers

Lesson Info

4. Camera Controls: Top Deck
Explore the top deck of the XT-3 with John and learn how to access and configure the majority of the camera’s controls. John shows real examples of images to highlight the effect of different ISO, shutter speed, and aperture settings. Learn how to custom set ISO ranges, the XT-3’s exposure tendencies, how to control aperture with different lenses, how and when to prioritize aperture or shutter speed, how the exposure compensation dial works, and when to use manual exposure.


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Class introduction Duration:12:33
2 Photo Basics Duration:04:07
4 Camera Controls: Top Deck Duration:21:14
6 Camera Controls: Back Side Duration:26:44
7 Quick Menu Overview Duration:26:28

Lesson Info

Camera Controls: Top Deck

All right, We're gonna be looking at the top deck of the camera where we have the majority of the controls. Obviously some of the most important ones up here. 1st 1 I want to talk about is the I S O Diallo. Over on the left hand side, we do have a locking pin right in the middle of it so that you can set it to a particular setting and totally lock it in so that it doesn't turn. You can leave it unlocked so that you can freely turn it. It's got some nice click stops on it on DSO. If you just like to change it a lot, you can leave it unclipped all the time. Or you can just lock it in when you know that it's really important. So there's a lot of different things going on. So let's take a look at some of the different options that we have on here. So we have settings from 1 60 to 12,800 on here, and you can adjust this to adjust how your sensor receives the light, how much it amplifies the signal and how much brighter it makes the image And so the standard I, esos, as I say, range from 1 6...

0 up to 12,800. Now we do have some other ones. We haven't h setting, which stands for high, which can either be 25,600 or 51,200. You can go into the menu system and you can select which setting is set for high. Most people are gonna probably choose 25,600 because it's just the next one on the list, and it's probably gonna be more practical than the next one up. But if you know you need it on a regular basis, you can choose one of those in there. And if you're asking, why didn't they just put them both in there? Well, they have a limited amount of space, and the size of the numbers are already getting to be kind of small, and they didn't want to make him any smaller. At the other end of the spectrum, we haven't a which obviously stands for auto. And this is where you can have the camera automatically figuring out the I s o for you so that whether you're setting shutter speeds and or apertures you're getting an even exposure on what you're doing in the isso is just kicking in to make sure that you have the correct amount of like Next up is a low setting, which is generally speaking, half of the lowest setting 1 60 So that's going to be 80. And that is something that you want to be careful about using because you're gonna have less dynamic range. When you use that, the only time to really use that at least that I've come across is when you're really desperate for longer shutter speeds. It's possible that you could use that in some video, but I've found it when I'm shooting some waterfalls and I'm trying to get a very slow shutter speed. I can use it and get a little bit longer shutter speed. But be aware you're gonna get less dynamic range. In that case. 1 60 of course, is our native or base sensitivity on this, which means this is where you're going to get the best image quality and talking about image quality. Let's take a look at what sort of image quality you can expect at some of the different isso. So I ran this through my standard I s o test. We're gonna magnify a small portion of this image. And look at this with the different ISOS. This first page, they all look pretty darn good. I s 0 1600 on this is still very clean, and I would not mind using this for almost anything. So as we climb up to the higher and higher numbers, you're going to Seymour and more noise on this camera. And like in most cameras, the highest two settings are pretty bad, and I would really try to avoid them if I were you. And so the general rule of thumb is that you want to keep the ISO's as low as possible as often as possible. But I would say up to 1632 100 still looks very good on this camera. And I'd be a little bit wary about going 6400 and higher if find detailed image quality is important to you. No, I didn't want to throw this camera through an additional test to see how it handled, brightening the shadows and dealing with over exposure. And so this is kind of a special case where I was photographing something that was very dark and very bright. And first I exposed it for the for the brightest of the two subjects. And then I changed the I S O so that I could see the darker subject more closely. And then I was going to use the's in post production and try to correct for the mistakes I that I shot on purpose. And so, in one case I'm going to try to darken the highlights. And in another case, I'm going to try to lighten the shadows. And I wanted to see Is it better to overexpose with this camera or under exposed? Where can I correct for my mistakes? Most easily And so I'm gonna go in and I am brightening the shadows, and I am darkening the highlights. And let's take a look at the results here. And if we start on the left side, I have been able to brighten the shadows and maintain color and detail very well. Over on the far right hand side, you'll notice that the yellow color eyes completely faded out. The red got really intense, which looks a little bit weird and so What this told me is that the camera handles under exposure very well but does not handle over exposure. So you want to be very careful about not over exposing your subjects with this camera. If you're one or two stops under exposed, you're gonna be able to brighten those shadows and recover a lot of information on any sort of photo that you might take. So that is your information on the I S O. Once again, try to keep it said it won 60 as much as you can bump it up as far as necessary. I found 1632 100 are still very good quality, especially for a camera with the image sensor size that this has Next up. Let's talk about shutter speeds and one of the great things about Fuji's is we get a manual shutter speed dial on the top. For those of you who like tactile controls and like Theis Odile, there's a lot of things going on. So let's take a closer look at what's going on with the shutter speed dial. It does have in a setting which, of course, stands for automatic. If you want to put the camera into an aperture priority or a program mode. You simply set the shutter speed dial to the A setting. We then have our listing of fast shutter speeds. 1 8/1000 of a second is our top shutter speed on the dial. And then we come down to 2 50 which has an X, which, of course, means that that is the top shutter speed with flash. And so, if you want to use flash, you got to be a to 50 or slower than that. And that's why there's an X there. We then have a lot of our regular and slower shutter speeds all the way down to one second. And so with all of these numbers, with the exception of one, those are fractions. That's one over 1000 that's one over to so 1/2 a second, and then we come down to one full second, and in between, these are third stop. So for those of you who want to get very precise on your exposure, you can get to these third stops on the back of the camera by turning the dial. And so, if you want to get to a shutter speed that's very near 1/60 of a second. You can set it to 60 turn the dial, and you can get down to that 50 and 40. You want to go to 30 then you gotta turn the dial to go down to 30. Next up we have T and T stands for time, which actually means a couple of things. It's longer shutter speeds and specific shutter speeds. If you didn't like using the dial on the top of the camera, you could put it in the team mode and simply use the command I'll on the back of the camera to get through all of the different options. And for some people, that's just a simpler and faster way of getting shutter speeds set. You can also go down to 15 minutes worth of exposure there and so you can get to those longer exposure times, which, by the way, I don't think any other camera company is doing. Most camera companies draw limit at 30 seconds, they will have a bulb setting. But you know what? This camera also has a bulb setting, and that's what the B stands for. And this is a long shutter speed all the way up to 60 minutes, and the way the bulb works is you get to decide exactly how long the photo is going to be by pressing down on the shutter release. So what happens is you put the camera in the B mode when you're ready to start taking a photo, you press down on the shutter release, and that opens up the shutter, and it's going to stay open as long as your finger is on that shutter release. And then when you take it off, that ends the exposure now, actually, pressing down on the shutter release of the camera is not a great idea because you're probably gonna be moving or vibrating the camera. And thats where the cable released, whether it's a mechanical or electronic, would be a better technique in that regard. Now there are some shutter speeds that are actually faster than 1/1000 of a second that you can get to, and that is of course, 16 and 32/1000 of a second. These could be achieved through what's called an electronic shutter speed, which means the mechanical shutters not working. What it's doing is it's turning the pixels on and off very quickly. There is some issues with this, and I'll talk more about this as we get into the settings for this. And these need to be turned on if you want, by going into the menu system under shooting, setting and under center type. And there's a number of different options, and I will detail them when we go through the menu setting. The problem with these is that it's scanning the image from one into the other, and fast moving subjects may be distorted. And so, for most use, you could just leave it in. This mechanical shutter speeds from 1/1000 of a second down. Of course, shutter speeds are very important for stopping action by choosing a fast shutter speed in this case, 1/1000 of a second. Or, if you want to blur that river there in front of you, going all the way down to one second and you can have some fun with nighttime exposures by leaving that shutter open for a long period of time here in a city, I can't remember what city this is, but I wanted Mawr car tail lights than were available in 30 seconds, so I was able to leave it open for a couple of minutes. Oh, I think it's Rome. That's it. Almost forgot that. All right, so that is your shutter speeds. Next up, let's talk about the apertures on the camera, and there's some different options, depending on what style lends you have on the camera. But most all of the lenses air gonna have an aperture dialled on them, and there may or may not be a little a on there. There's probably gonna be in a, but it may be around the collar of the lands or might have its own special, unique switch. By moving that over into the A setting, it moves the apertures into an aperture automated setting, which is kind of like shutter priority or something you would use for a program mode. And so, if you want to manually or automatically control that you would use the A or not used ta In that regard, there are a few X C lenses. And think of these is economy lenses, their smaller in size or they're a little bit cheaper and cost, and these do not have apertures on them in the aperture in these cases will then be controlled on the rear command I'll on the camera so you can go through all of the standard aperture options just by turning the back dial on the camera. Apertures are important, of course, for controlling the amount of light as well as with the depth of field. Might want to set an aperture of F 22 if you want the foreground and the background in focus for a particular photo. If you have a lens that goes all the way down to 1.4, it's gonna be very good, most likely at getting fairly shallow depth of field so you could have a subject in focus and everything else blurred out. So one of the things to notice that when you do have the show to release pressed halfway down, it will stop the aperture down so that you can see how much depth of field that you are going to get. And so if you have your lens set down F 22 or F 16 you press halfway down. It's gonna close the aperture down so that you can see what's going on, how much depth the field you're getting in the viewfinder. So let me do a little demo here with you. I want to show you what some of these modes are doing on the camera. So let's put the camera into a shutter priority mode. In which case, at least on my camera, I have a switch on the side of the lens for going to a. So now the apertures on the lens are controlled automatically and on the top of the camera, I'm just going to set a particular shutter speed with the dial up on the top of the camera. I'll choose something pretty easy, like 1/30 of a second, and we can see down. Here is we change our shutter speeds in blue. Blue is the manual setting, and it's changing our apertures automatically. And if we get something that's kind of out of range, you'll see the aperture turns red, which means that Apertura is not wide enough for us to capture a photo. We can take a photo and chance. Our chances are that if we play this back, it's going to be a little bit on the dark side. So we got to be careful with that. This is one of the reasons why I like the aperture priority mode. So what I'll do here is I'll put the shutter speed in a and over on the side of the camera. I'll put this in manual, and then I'm gonna turn the aperture ring on this and you'll see that the aperture is now in blue and my shutter speed is adjusting and I will not get a red number because for every aperture I haven't appropriate shutter speed. It's possible in the right type or wrong type of lighting. I should say that you'll get something that doesn't work out for you. But the aperture priority is a little bit safer, easier mode to use for a lot of people. And so it's one of the reasons why I like it is do a lot of other photographers, and so that's just a little bit on aperture priority and shutter priority. So for the program mode on this camera and program mode being where the camera is controlling both the shutter speed and the aperture, you could set your shutter speed to the A setting for automatic and set the aperture to a for automatic and then the camera will be figuring out shutter speeds and apertures for you. Of course, you'll be setting the ISOS on your own. Or you could have the camera set those as well. And so you can have any combination of those that you want and so you can see your shutter speed apertures and I ISOS in the display very easy listed, usually right along towards the bottom of it. If you want, you can do something called program shift. And so, even though the camera is giving you a preset number of shutter speed and aperture, if you don't like those sets of numbers, you can turn the one dial. And it will change both numbers, continuing to keep you a giving you an even exposure but changing the shutter speeds and apertures so that perhaps you could have a faster shutter speed to stop motion or a greater aperture to either let more light in or one that gives you more depth of field. Your choice and the colors that you see generally main Blue means you are setting things manually. White are things that are being set automatically, and red is a warning. Where there is a problem for some reason, either too much light or not enough light coming in. And so that's what the meaning of all of those colors are over on the left hand side as well as with the plus minus, you can see the exposure compensation. We're gonna talk about that here next. And so if you do want to make the picture lighter or darker, you'll see that scale being adjusted. So let's get to that right now. The exposure compensation die along the top of the camera. Another one of those tactile dials that we can use very easily feels good in the fingers. It's a little bit smaller than on previous cameras, so it doesn't get bumped quite is easily so. If you have the camera in any of the automated modes where the camera is in control of the exposure, this is the way for you to kind of supersede that exposure idea and tell the camera you want it a little bit lighter and a little bit darker, and it's very easy to just turn it from minus three to plus three. But if you want to go even further, you can put it into the sea mode cut command mode where you have even further command of it and you can do up to five stops of exposure using the front dial of the camera. Now, as I say, this is going to be used not with manual, but with any of the automated settings on the camera aperture, priority shutter priority program mode. And so let's go ahead and do an example here. I'm gonna throw my camera into full program. This feels very unnatural for me, but I'm gonna throw the aperture and automatic. I'm gonna throw the I e isso into automatic shutter speeds in automatic. Let's go ahead and turn this on. And what I'm gonna do is I'm not gonna go to the sea mode, but I'm going to do a quick little bracket Siri's and I'm gonna shoot it at minus two zero and plus two. Play these back and we can see And I'm gonna pull up some information with my display but in here and you can barely see it on the bottom. But you can see I'm going to go to the darker ones. So maybe we concede a bit better here and so you can see what aperture and ISO and shutter speed was chosen, but you can also see the exposure in confirmation or exposure. Compensation is that minus two is that zero. It is that plus two here, and as one of the most important things that needs to be done at this point is, I need to reset my exposure compensation back down to zero because that's where you want to keep it the majority of the time so you can manually bracket your shots or make adjustments as necessary quickly and easily with that little thumb dial. So for manual exposure, you're going to need to be adjusting and checking a few different things. So one you'll be working with the aperture, turning the dial generally on the lens. Some of them have listed click Stop. Some of them are unlisted, and you have to look in the display. You'll be changing cheddar speeds and looking at the exposure indicator over on the left hand side of the frame. This is done in third stops, with big markers for each of the full stop, so you can see whether you're one or one in the third stops under two and 2/3 over. Stop overexposed or right in the middle with even exposure. I love working in manual exposure for a lot of different types of subjects because I get consistent results. And when you have a subject that is under similar lighting and you're taking a variety of photographs to get different angles and viewpoints on it, you want it to look all with a similar brightness level. And so I will set my camera for whatever seems to be the appropriate manual exposure. And then I'll shoot a bunch of different compositions. I also like manual when there is tricky lighting. There might be great areas of darkness or very bright areas, and manual exposure gets me the exposure that I want. It does take a little bit more time because I have to think about things, but I get things set the way that I want to. So let's go ahead and see what sort of manual exposure we have in here. So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna set my I s 02 just something that I think is gonna work out in here. I'm gonna say cause I'm indoors right now. I'm gonna turn my lens off of the aperture priority mode, and I'm going to adjust my aperture to a middle aperture of F A deal F eight b There will do that kind of philosophy right now and then for my shutter speeds. First thing I could do is I can just turn the shutter speed dial until the image on the back of the camera looks about right. But if I want to get a little bit more exact, I look along the left side to see the indicator where it gets towards the middle. And if I want to make fine tune adjustments, I can turn that back dial to adjust my shutter speeds in third stop increments. And if I'm satisfied where it's at, I can then take my photo, play it back, and we can look at the various information about it by hitting the display button back here. And we can see exactly what our shutter speeds apertures and I eso settings are there. And so that's the way you can work with manual exposure. It's gonna look very similar slightly different when you look through the viewfinder with your eye up there. But that's the way that you would work the camera in a manual exposure mode

Class Description


  • Leverage the new viewfinder for live view and playback
  • Understand how to navigate and customize the menus, modes, and settings
  • Know when and how to use the sports mode for subject tracking and fast shutter speeds
  • How to take advantage of the film simulation and grain effect modes
  • Use the 4k film options for incredible video performance with amazing opportunities for color grading in post production


The Fujifilm X-T3 is a mirrorless digital Fujifilm camera, hauling features from the 26.1-megapixel sensor to the 4K video and up to 30 fps shutter. But the Fujifilm’s X-T3 long list of features is just money wasted if you don’t actually know how to find them and put them to use. Skip the floundering through menus and join photographer John Greengo exploring the camera’s many features, from customizing the camera to understanding subject-tracking focus.

This class is designed for photographers using the Fujifilm X-T3, from those just pulling it out of the box to photographers that just haven’t found all the camera’s features yet. The class can also serve as an in-depth look if you’re not yet sure if the Fujifilm X-T3 is the best camera for you.

This Fuji camera class covers the camera from understanding the controls to customizing the menu.

What's packed in this Fujifilm camera Fast Start? Learn the vital information in less time than it takes to analyze the menu -- and have more fun doing it too.


  • Action Photographers
  • Videographers
  • New Fujifilm X-T3 Camera owners


John Greengo has led more than 50 classes covering the in-depth features of several different DSLR camera models and mirrorless options, including Fast Starts for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fujifilm, and Panasonic. The award-winning photographer is one of the most celebrated CreativeLive instructors, leading classes covering a myriad of topics, including the previous Mark II and Mark III 5D cameras. Greengo has used the 5D series since the first 5D. He's led photographers through the ins and outs of advanced options like the EOS 80D and EOS 7D Mark II to entry-level Canon Rebel cameras like the Rebel T6i and T6.


Justina Tumaite

Thank you it's super helpful. I loved it :)

Eric Geerts

I've been with CL for quite a while and I pretty much got used to (all of) John's top quality classes. Kinda been waiting for this one over the last months. So thanks again, John, for your consistent 5 star quality standard!!

Robert Felice

I loved this class! How much did I love this class? I loved this class and I don't even have an X-T3! I have the Fujifilm X100V, a camera similar enough to the X-T3 that this class easily covered 85% - 90% of the features on my camera. It's also a camera new enough that there isn't much available on how to use it. This class got the job done for me. Well done, John!