Backside: I Button Bottom Row
Next up on the bottom row is the picture control, and so this is something that allows you to shoot, when you are shooting JPEGs, the camera decides exactly the color, tone and contrast and saturation and sharpness of your images, which is kind of controlling the final look of the images. So let's take a look. I shot this camera at all the different settings and at first it's pretty similar except for the black and white one. That one is monochrome. That one's distinctly different. But if you look at the blue sky between the landscape and the portrait, you're gonna see a different level of saturation in the blue, and so if you are shooting a bunch of photos of a particular style, you can come in here and change it. I kind of think of this as the old days of film. There's different types of Kodak film and Fuji film and each had their best place where you might want to use a certain style of film and this is just that final look. Now personally I don't play with this on the cameras becau...
se I'll just shoot it a standard JPEG or a standard RAW and then I'll go in on my computer and I'll make the adjustments there because different images need different adjustments and I don't want to have the same thing done to all of my images, but if you do want to do it in camera, it's here and available for you to use. You may want to experiment with that yourself. Next up is a couple of modes dealing with focus. The first is the Focus mode. We've talked a little bit about this. We talked about it in the Live View mode, but this is for standard photography, so we have four different options in here. The first actually does depend on what mode you are in on the camera. If you are in the basic mode, you're only gonna have the option of AF-A and MF. If you are in the more manual modes, you're gonna have four different options. I mentioned at the beginning of this class there's a number of child safety locks that are turned on when you're in the simple modes of the camera, and this is one of those child safety locks. I wanted to warn you in case you went in here and said I don't have four options. I only have two. You need to change where your mode dial is. First up and most common is AF-S. S stands for Single Focus. This allows you to focus on a subject and, by pressing halfway down on the shutter release, it locks the focus so that you can recompose, so that your subject isn't always exactly on top of wherever that focusing point is. Next up is AF-C, and this is for action photography. Sports, dance and variety things like that. This is where it will track your subject's movement, so you can shoot a burst of photos and get all of your images in focus. In between S and C is AF-A. This is where the camera chooses whether to use AF-S or AF-C, and AF-A is one of those modes that I'm just not a big fan of. I'm not gonna recommend because it's a bit inconsistent as to whether it chooses to go with a still subject or a continuous subject, and so I'm not a big fan of AF-A and, if you'll notice in the automatic modes of the camera, that's the mode that the camera is in a lot of the time, and so I like having a little bit more direct control over what the camera is focusing on, and so I recommend AF-S most of the time, and then when you're shooting action, AF-C. And if you do want to get into manually focus yourself, you can do that right here in the menu. Now one of the things to note for anyone who's been using Nikon for awhile is that, on most of the Nikon lenses, there's gonna be a manual focus switch on the lens. Nikon seems to at least at this level of camera, is starting to put those controls in the camera, and so this is where you would change this camera to manual focus, but be aware if you have this camera and you have one of the other Nikon lenses that has a manual focus switch on the side, if you flip that switch on the lens to manual focus, you are guaranteed gonna be in manual focus, and so if you're wondering why there might be a disconnect between the two, check the focusing switch on your lens. And so that is what is known as the focusing mode or how our lens focuses. Next is where our lens is gonna focus and this is the AF-area mode. So let's take a look at the different options that we have in here. First up is a Single-point AF. I love this option. A tight point that I can choose exactly where I want to focus given the... I think there's 39 focusing points. You can choose any one of those 39 focusing points. We'll do a little demo here in a moment about moving that around. Next up is a Dynamic-area nine point focus, and this allows you to choose any one of the different 39 points, but what it does is it looks for help from its nearest eight neighbors in case it can't figure out where that one point is focusing. Now you have to have your camera in the AF-C option in order to see this. We then have the 21 point option, which is just basically a bigger target than the nine target, so if you have a more erratic subject, then you might want to choose the 21. Once again, you do have to be in the AF-C mode. In the Dynamic-area or Dynamic-area AF with 39 points, you get to choose the starting single point, but then it will look everywhere in case it can't figure out what's going on with that one frame. And again, AF-C will work. It has to be in AF-C for it work. There is a 3D-tracking mode, which is using additional information, color information to try to judge what your subject is for tracking it back and forth. It's not just using information in the focus bracket. It's using other information, and so it's got a bit of a scene recognition system in there where it's trying to figure out what you are doing. Now does 3D-tracking work better than the Dynamic 39 point? It depends on what you're doing. The Dynamic-area with 39 points is a little bit more predictable in what it's going to do. The 3D is a little less erratic, but if you're not familiar with shooting sports photography, might be a simple solution to getting better results real quickly, but the professionals who shoot with a higher-end Nikon cameras are often not shooting in the 3D-tracking mode as I say, because it's a little unpredictable. And then finally we have Auto-area AF, and this is where it just chooses all 39 points to focus, and it chooses whatever is closest to you. And so what I wanted to show you on the back of the camera here is adjusting these points, and so if we look on the back of my camera, you'll see that we have all the focusing points lit up over here and I'm in the single mode. Actually let's get this... No I don't want to Playback. I want the information button. I'm in single focusing mode right here, which means when I come in here to this mode, I'm gonna have a limited number of options. I can choose a single point or I can choose all points. If I come back over here to AF-S and I change it to continuous, then I come over to the AF-area mode. Now I've got lots of points, and so if I choose a single point, hit down halfway on the shutter release, you'll see over here on the left side, and you would see a similar type feature by looking in the viewfinder, you'll see that I can just move left and down and I can move down to any one of these different spots on the frame. Now if I hit the I button and I go back in and I change this to the nine point area... Okay. That's okay. You'll see that I now have one main dot over here, but I have the surrounding eight dots also highlighted, so it's gonna start with the one in the middle. It's gonna try to focus there, and if the subject moves around... Let's say it's a bird in flight. It's gonna track it in those other nine areas, and so this is what I like to shoot with most action photography. Now if I go into the I button and change it to the next area, you'll see that it just extends this out larger to the 21 bracket, and so if you're focusing on something that's very erratic, this would be a pretty good system. And then if we go into I button, we can change it to 39, it's gonna be... All of 'em will be active with just one as your center point. With 3D, what it's gonna show you here is everything's active. We can still select a single point. And it's using its own intelligence, gathering information to try to figure out where your subject is. It's not 100% perfect. Neither is the 39 point Dynamic-area, and so you may have to do a little testing depending on how you shoot, what lenses you have, and what type of action you're shooting as to what's better. 39, I would tend to want to go with nine or 21 with action. I am not a big fan of Auto-area AF because what it does is it treats all the focus points as equally of importance and, if something is in the front... Let's say if it's just a flower or something like that or a wall and your subject's standing behind it, it's gonna focus on whatever is closest in that frame there, and so kind of for my serious photography, as long as it's not action, I just leave this in single, and then I would leave my focus area in single point right there. I would generally leave it in the middle, but the nice thing is that you have this touch pad on the back of the camera, and if you want it over to the left, it's just a few clicks to get it where you want it to be, and so that's a pretty very precise system, but you do have to be careful 'cause you are focusing directly right there in the very middle. So that is our AF-area mode. Next up is the metering system. So the camera has three different ways that it reads the light coming in through the lens. So let's take a look at what these are and what they're best for. So first up is Matrix metering, and this is technically the 3D color matrix II metering system. Uses a 2016-pixel RGB sensor, and this is great for unusual mixed, different lighting systems. This does a great job about 99.9% of the time, so it's a very, very good system. The Center-weighted metering system is a traditional system that older cameras use to have where it measured just the light and concentrated that reading in the center of the frame, and so if you have something of average brightness right there in the center it's a good system. Not too many people use that anymore, but it is available if you'd like it. There is also a Spot Metering system, which can be really good if you have a subject that is of average brightness, but is very small in the frame and you don't want the camera to read all the extra area. Perhaps it's a very light background or perhaps it's a very dark background. That's gonna throw off your meter, and so Spot Metering can be a handy tool to use. It's a little bit... It's a delicate tool. You gotta be careful in the way that you use it, but for most people the Matrix metering system is gonna do a really good job. They made a lot of advancements, and if you leave that turned on, it's gonna be extraordinarily rare that you are gonna have a bad exposure that's gonna be really overexposed or really underexposed so much that you can't fix it in post-production. Next up is our Flash mode. We've seen this before because we've had access to the button side of the camera that allows us into this mode, but we can also make these controls here, and so remember on this, there are different options available depending on what mode you're in, and so if you see three options in one and five in the other, it's just because you're in a different mode, and so we did already go through and talk about these before, so I'm gonna go through these fairly quickly here. And so Program, Shutter Priority and Aperture Priority where the camera has a little additional control over some of the features going on, you can force the flash on, turn on that Red-eye Reduction... You can also fix Red-eye in post-production, too. If you don't like Red-eye, you don't have to have the Red-eye turned on. There is other ways of getting rid of it. Slower shutter speeds to allow in some of the ambient light in the background, and then Rear curtain for action type photography that is appropriate with flash. And then when you get over into the manual mode, you're gonna have a few less control because you're gonna be controlling the shutter speed on this. So, if you get into flash photography, you're definitely gonna want to get in here and play around a little bit. Flash exposure compensation. We've talked about this before, but you can make the settings here on the back of the camera, using the controls or the touch screen if you want, and you're gonna often want to... As I say, power down the flash if you do a lot of people photography. Try it down at about TTL minus one. That's a good setting to have in general, but as I said before, if you have subjects that have dark clothing or you have dark backgrounds, you might need to power it down, all the way down to minus 2.0. Varies from scene to scene in what you are shooting and what you like out of your photographs. Next up we have Exposure compensation. It's seems almost kind of a waste that this is here because we do have a button right there on the top of the camera that that's the only thing that it does, but sometimes it's hard to see the top of the camera 'cause you may have the camera mounted in an unusual position or maybe it's high up on a tripod, and you can make all these settings on the back using the touch screen, which is a nice option. And so this is just allowing you to shoot with your photos a little bit brighter or a little bit darker in any of the semi-automatic modes. That's Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority and Program. And that is your information button. So that should be a button that you are regularly going to because it's a lot quicker to get to those important controls here rather than diving into the menu system where you're gonna have to navigate several more layers of options in there. Here, very quick to get in and adjust those... What do we got, about 14 items there. Those are things that a lot of people go into on a regular basis. The Multi selector on the back of the camera as we've been demonstrating throughout this class, you're gonna be moving your focusing point, and in the second half, we're gonna be moving our navigation through the menu system. The OK of course is our confirmation button. We've seen that for a number of reasons like locking onto our tracking subjects. In Playback, we were using the Zoom in and Zoom out buttons, and so that will work in Live View. That will work in the Playback mode, and the minus button also has a little question mark down there, and this is a help menu. As you're going through the menu system, if you don't understand what one of those features is, you forget, you can hit the question button and, in some cases... Not every case, but in some cases, it's gonna give you a little bit more information about what that feature does, and so that hopefully might be able to answer your question while you are in there. There's a little light down there in the right hand corner that let's you know when your camera is writing information to the memory cards. You do not want to pull the memory card out of the camera when that light is turned on. Typically, you don't wanna turn the camera off either, 'cause it's busy working. Just letting you know the camera is at work when that is on.