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Nikon D7500 Fast Start

Lesson 9 of 26

Live View Menu

John Greengo

Nikon D7500 Fast Start

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

9. Live View Menu

Lesson Info

Live View Menu

Next up is a very big and important control on the camera. It's the live view movie option switch on this, and this is how you can switch between live view and movie, and we have a collar around it, and so if we take that collar and we flip it to one or the other, that's the mode we're gonna be in. And then if we want to activate that mode, we press the button right there in the middle for live view, and what that does is it puts the mirror in the upward position, lets light come into the sensor so that we can see what's going on on the back LCD of the camera. And so in this case we're gonna start off talking about live view, so have it rotated towards the live view indicator. Press the live view button, and then you're gonna get a live image on the back of the camera of what the camera is pointed at. First and foremost, if you want to change the information that you are seeing, you press the info button, and that's gonna cycle through the different options. As you continue to press th...

at info button, it'll turn on framing grids, or the histogram, or virtual horizon to make sure that you're holding the camera level right, or just turn general information on so that you have a good read of the shutter speed aperture information. And so hitting the info button really never hurts anything. So it's something you can always do. The i Button, as we'll see here, gets us into a different shortcut menu, and so if you want to change a few of these options on the camera it's a shortcut option to go in and doing this, so the one item in here that you're not gonna find in the menu system is one I want to give you a little demonstration on. And it is the exposure preview option on the camera. So let's go ahead and take a look at my camera. I'm gonna leave it in the program mode, nice simple mode. Gonna hit the live view button right here. And let's zoom back so we can see our table a little bit more properly here. Okay, so now what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna hit the i Button in here, and I'm gonna come down to the exposure ... preview option. Now currently, it is off, and so as you see, I can do my program shift and change shutter speeds and apertures. I could change, let's see, can I change my ... I can change my exposure compensation and actually, you know what I'm gonna do? I'm gonna flip over to manual so that I can make this really clear. So what you're seeing in here is a pretty nice, even exposure. It's normal brightness and so forth. But as I change my shutter speeds and apertures, you don't see any real change in the brightness of the image for any consistent amount of time. As I change my shutter speeds back and forth, there's no change in the brightness, so I'm not getting a preview of my final picture here. I am simply getting a good even exposure that I can compose by. And so I'm gonna move my focusing frame down a little bit so I can ... Let's get this lined up here and that way I can focus on the subject. And so if I take a photo, let's take a look at that photo. Get to the right information screen. Okay, that photo's looking just a tad on the dark side I think, there, but my preview screen's not showing this. And so what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna press the i Button, and I'm gonna go in here to exposure, where it says exposure off, and I'm gonna turn this on. And so now it's gonna show me an exposure preview and it's gonna give me a little indicator over here on the right, so now I can start making changes. Let's open up the aperture a little bit here. Let's change our shutter speeds, and you can see we're getting a real preview of how bright our final picture's going to be. I find this very, very intuitive and easy to work with in the field, and so if I'm working from a tripod, I do like to have the exposure turned on so that I can just look at the back of the camera and I can immediately see if I'm over-exposed, or if I'm under-exposed. And so that's something that you may want to turn on. It doesn't work well with flash photography, so if you're in the studios, that's a good time that you may want to turn that off. All right, next up in here is if you do want to focus you can simply press halfway down on the shutter release. You probably saw me doing that there. If you want to move the focusing frame around, you can do that with the controls on the back of the camera, and you can also do this by zooming in or zooming out if you really want to check focus. Now, if you want to have access to the touch screen controls you can press the info button, and then you can use the touch screen for focus, and so let's go ahead and give this a try. In fact, I'm gonna ... Let's see if I can adjust the light balance to something a little bit more normal here. I'm just gonna let it automatically do things. So this oughta do it here, and so let's adjust the exposure so that we have a little bit. That's looking pretty good right in here. Okay, so we have a little symbol up here, and so if we want to use touch screen, the camera will choose to focus wherever I point and take a photo. Well, maybe I don't want it to take a photo. I can come up here and I can turn the whole touch screen, or the ... Taking of the picture off, but it does focus wherever I touch. And then I can turn that off again, and now it does nothing. And so there's just a cycle of three: Focus and shoot, just focus, or none of that. Now, you may not see that depending on which info you have turned on and off. Remember you can hit the info button for a variety of information, and so one of the options is just data along the bottom, and now touch screen is not working. We need to get this turned on. Now we can do it, and let's cycle around and see if we can do it with it turned off. Yes, we can, so be aware that you may need to turn the info on and off before you get that touch screen in there. Another thing that you may want to do, if you are on a tripod, a little bit harder to do hand-held, is to hit the plus button, and this allows you to zoom in on your subject. I'm gonna move this around a little bit. Actually let's see if I can do this with my finger here, and so let's see if I can ... I can't zoom in with double tap, but I need to use the plus button over here. Let's see if I can move this around a little bit. It doesn't want to scroll around when you're in this mode, so you have to use the plus button to zoom in. But if you want to shoot, if you want to focus, you can do that, but switching back and forth between shooting and focusing, you're gonna need to come back to the full screen here, so if I just want to auto-focus and not shoot a photo, press it, it'll work on focusing, and then I can shoot a photo up here in that case. And so, a lot of different options for zooming in and checking on focus on that, to make sure that you're getting proper focus. Now, there are different ways that you can focus, and there is a button over here on the side of the camera that we haven't properly approached yet, but this is the AF Mode button, and this is gonna come into play right here and now when we're in live view. So by pressing in on that button and turning the back dial, we can change the camera from AFS to AFF. And so let's talk about what these options are. So, this is the focus mode and we have single focus for subjects that are stationary or not moving, and so this is gonna be good for good general photography. When you have it in live view, the other option is AFF, which is full-time focus, where the camera will continually adjust for subjects that are moving around. Now, it's not great for sports photography, it's not great for subjects that are moving around very quickly, but it will try to follow the subject the best it can. You may also see the option of manual focus if you've turned your camera into, on the lens, if you've switched it over into the manual focus option. Now by pressing that button and turning the front dial of the camera, you will change the AF area mode on the camera, and we have a number of interesting different options in here, so let's take a closer look. The first option is a face-priority AF, and so in this case it's gonna look for faces and it's gonna track those faces, and it actually does a pretty good job in here. Next up is a normal-area, which is a pin-point focus so that you can choose a very precise area where you are focusing. We have a standard focusing area, a little bit wider point, a little bit more generalist for basic subjects, and then we have a subject-tracking one, which is like the face-priority, but it's looking for other objects to track, and it will track these subjects. And so I want to give that a little bit of a try here, and so I'm gonna need to grab a prop from our table over here, and we're gonna see if we can track this subject. It's not gonna be moving, but I'll be moving the camera. So I'll just set it out here in front, and we're gonna see if we can focus on this subject. Now what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna reach around and I'm gonna press the button on the side, and we're gonna leave it in AFS, or actually we're gonna go to AFF, and we're gonna go to the subject tracking. Right here is the subject tracking. And now I want to focus on this camera here in the foreground. I'm gonna need to make just a little bit more of an adjustment 'cause it's right at the edge of where we can focus right now. And so if I want to track the subject, let's turn off some more information in here by pressing the info button. There we go, and so what I'm gonna do is it says okay to lock it onto that subject. And so let's see if it ... Press it right there ... It is locking on to that subject as I move that camera around. And so if I want to shoot a photo, it's gonna try focusing on it, and it does. It's a little bit on the slow side, but it does track that subject very well. It's not quite enough for high-speed sports, but you know, if you got a kid playing around in the room in front of you, it might do a pretty good job at being able to track that. And so that tracking is pretty good. Wanted you to see that yourself, and it's something that you may want to try with. Now, that only works in the live view mode. It's not gonna work in the standard photography mode. And so don't expect to see it at that time. All right, so one of the problems with the live view mode is that as light comes into the camera, light will hit the mirror. Now, the way the camera normally auto-focuses, is that that mirror is a partially silvered mirror, which means that some of the light's gonna go through the mirror, onto a secondary mirror and down to an auto-focus module. Now, this is something that Nikon's been working on for the last few decades, that enabled a camera to focus as fast as possible. Now, the problem is, is when you put the camera in a mirror up mode, when you have the camera in a live view mode, the mirror goes up and none of that information is going down to the auto-focus sensor. It's just the light coming on to the sensor. And so they're using contrast on the sensor, and information coming off the sensor in order to focus and track its subjects, and it tends to be a little bit on the slow side. And so it's not really designed for fast action. It can photograph some moving subjects, but nothing that's moving too quickly. So just be aware of that when you are using the live view and the movie mode as well, and when you are using any of these different area mode options. All right, next up, the camera has an automated fine tune, which will help tune the focusing system on it. Sometimes on cameras, they will focus a little bit in front or a little bit behind the subject. And when it's in the live view mode, you can do an automated fine tune, and the way this is gonna work is first off, you have to zoom in on a subject. You can use manual or auto-focus, either one. But you do need to have the camera in the AFS mode and a normal or wide area and the frame in the center. And then, in live view, you will press and hold the video record button and the AF Mode button for three seconds. And what this is gonna do is this is gonna confirm that the camera's auto-focus phase detection system is focusing exactly on its subject, so let's go ahead and give this a try in the real world. And so, what we're gonna do is we're gonna go ahead and put this camera into live view, and we're gonna focus on our subjects out here. And let's zoom in nice and close. Let's go over here on the Polaroid camera. Now, one of the rules about making this work is I have to have it in the AFS mode, so I'm changing it from F to S, and I can't be in the targeted area. I have to be in the wide or the normal area, and so I'm gonna choose the normal area just to be very precise, and I can't have the focusing area off to the side. I have to get the area right to the middle. And you can press the okay button, getting it right to the middle. And so what I want to do is I want to focus smack dab there on that camera, and so if I focus in on the camera like that, I know it's in focus. I can zoom in and manually focus. Let's manually focus here. And so you can quickly see if I have gone out of focus. So I'm just trying to get a sharper focus, and this is where I actually think auto-focus will work a little bit better, 'cause it's able to really dial that in. And so what I'm gonna do next, is I'm gonna press the video record button and that focus button here on the side, and I'm gonna press 'em at the same time for three seconds. And we should get a little menu here. Before proceeding, fix the camera in place and check that it is focused. I am actually gonna turn off the stabilization, 'cause it seems to be moving around just a bit. And it does seem to be working, so I'm gonna press yes, and a new value has now been stored in the camera. And so now my camera is calibrated and focusing properly. Now, my hope is that you don't ever need to do this. But if you ever are shooting with your camera, looking at the results, and you're noticing that everything seems to be a little out of focus, and everything seems to be focused to the front or focused to the back, there's two different ways of fixing the problem. This is the fast and easy way. There is a more complicated, more detailed system called Fine Tune Adjustment, that we'll talk about in the menu system. But this is something new that they've added on just to the latest generations of Nikons, and it's made it much easier to get this focusing done, because you're using the camera to figure out what's best in focus in live view, where it's incredibly accurate, and then it's calibrating the face detection system. And so, if you're getting fine in-focus photos right now, you don't need to worry about this. But if anything is out of alignment, it's not quite right, this is a way for you to do it yourself.

Class Description

We know what it’s like to dive right into taking pictures with your new camera. But trying to understand the manual can be a frustrating experience. Get the most out of your new Nikon D7500 with this complete step-by-step walk-through of the camera’s features.

Join expert photographer John Greengo for a fast-track introduction, and unlock your camera’s full potential. In this Fast Start class, you’ll learn:

  • Learn the finer nuances of the 51-point AF system for sports portraits and more
  • Customize the deep menu to fit your specific needs

John is a CreativeLive veteran instructor and an experienced photographer. He has extensive experience teaching the technical minutiae that makes any camera an effective tool: aperture, ISO, the Rule of Thirds, and the kinds of lenses you’ll need to suit your camera body. This Fast Start includes a complete breakdown of your camera’s exposure, focus, metering, video and more. John will also explain how to customize the Nikon D7500’s settings to work for your style of photography.


Thomas Sielaff

Great, great course. Could not be any clearer on what to know, what to do, and in all, making understanding my camera a fun thing! Well, well, worth that cost. A steal really!!


Helps you master the camera controls very quickly. I'm glad I took the course. Without it, I'm sure it would have taken me years to know and use the full power of this camera. Great Course. Highly recommend.

Roy Shenfield

This is a great course! I recently bought a D7500 and was somewhat stymied by the large number of different possible settings and the several hundred page user manual and menu guide. This course covers the vast majority of what I need to know and in a reasonable amount of detail. I especially liked the material on menus as he went through most of them in detail. Additionally all the slides shown in the course are available in pdf as well as several pages detailing the authors recommended settings. I highly recommend, especially given the $24.00 special offering for this.