Sony® A6500 Fast Start

Lesson 18/24 - Camera Settings 2: Pages 1-4


Sony® A6500 Fast Start


Lesson Info

Camera Settings 2: Pages 1-4

It is time to move on to the second tab and right now we're going to be dealing with a lot of things dealing with the movie and the video recording of the camera. So movie, slow and quick motion. And so this is where, when you turn the camera's mode dial to the movie mode... Do you want the camera to operate in manual exposure, shutter priority, aperture priority, program and so forth. And so the main options are right there. We also do have some slow and quick options in here as well. I'd like to give you a little demo on that. Now normally if the camera's like in the program mode and you just hit the record button, it's gonna record in a standard program mode. This is only when you get into the video mode here. And so let me give you a quick little demo on the back of the camera, 'cause there's a couple of things that are kinda hidden in here. So let's get over to the second tab, movie mode. Movie S & Q motion, slow and quick motion. So if we go in here, we have our standard prog...

ram, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual, and then we get to the S & Q motion. And let's just go to S & Q M, so that we can have full control of everything. Oops, where did I jump passed it. There we go. And down here, we have the center button to hit enter. And so now we've selected that mode, but that isn't what I was expecting to happen. So let me try this again. If I go... Where is this in here? I wanted to get to the slow and quick options. And I forgot about this, so let's enter that. Go into the menu. Aha, there it is. Okay, so down here, a couple steps ahead of where we are, is the slow and quick settings which will normally be grayed out, but because I put it into the slow and quick movie option I can now get in here. And now I can get in here and I can select what is the recording rate of the video, 24, 30, or 60? 60's not available at this current setting. And then I can choose the frame rate. And so this is essentially going to speed up or slow down the options. And so the key thing, is in order to get to this setting, you gotta have the S & Q motion properly selected. I think if we go up here to the standard settings, just program one and then go back into the menu... Oh, it looks like I can still get down here. I guess that is something will only turn on when you actually set the camera to the S & Q motion. I got a little video here to show you in just a moment. Okay, so normally program mode, or manual for those of you who like to get in and really control your video. So the file format is the format that the image, or the video is recorded to. The XAVC S 4K if you want the highest 4K resolution. The XAVC S HD is your standard HD quality. The MP4 is that lower computer quality. It'd be good for like a basic, simplistic youtube video that works on a lot of different computers. AVCHD was for people who are working with a format that was designed for recording to Blue Ray type discs. And so if you were doing something directly to that, that's a good format for that. Okay, recording setting. And so on this one we are choosing the frames per second and the file size. And these file size will vary according to the file format that you've chosen. So the information that you see on screen here is only accurate for certain types of settings. And so 30 frames per second is kind of your normal video. There's reasons for doing something other than that but that's kind of the standard one. If you wanted to collect as much data as possible so that when you're editing you have as much data to work with, you would go with the hundred M, so that's a hundred... I believe it's a hundred megabits per second that it is recording. So as much information or it's a more condensed file which would be the 50M option, which is perfectly fine for basic standard video. The S & Q settings, we were just taking a look in here. And so in here you can go in and choose what the final recording rate is gonna be, 24, 30, or 60p. And this will depend on some of the other settings that you have set. And then you can have the frame rate. The rate that you're shooting at and then that matched up with the recording rate is going to be, is gonna depend or is gonna vary what type of video you're gonna get. Whether it's speeded up or slowed down. And so, somewhere in here I've got a video. And so I had a frame rate of one frame per second and that's the recording rate. And the playback is at 30 frames per second. So the effect is that the video is going to be 30 times faster than normal. And so as you can see, my clock ticking away here. You can speed time up or you can slow time using this system of adjustment of the frame rate. So it's time lapse built into the camera itself essentially. Dual record video. And so if you want to have this turned on, it will actually record two files, the more sophisticated video file as well as the more simplistic file. This is kinda the video version of recording raw and jpeg. And so if you need two video files from the camera simultaneously, you can do so here. Most people don't have a need for it. So that's why I'm recommending just turning it off at this point. The AF drive speed is going to control how fast the camera will focus back and forth when you're shooting movies. Now when you're shooting movies, changing focus can be disrupting to the shot that you're making. And so some people don't want this to happen too quickly. Which is why we have the adjustment in here. It depends on the type of subjects that you're shooting and how much they are moving back and forth. So, normal's a good place to start out, but remember that you can adjust it. Kinda continuing on that same thought, how fast you focus, but how fast the response time is... Say if a subject was to walk in front of your primary subject... Do you want the camera to refocus on that subject really quickly? And the other one was how quickly is that focusing happening? And so, standard is gonna be the main option here 'cause that way it's not going to suddenly refocus on every little thing that it could possibly change on. But if you do need it more responsive, it is possible to change it in here. Next up is the auto slow shutter. And this is where the camera will automatically start using slow shutter speeds for lower light conditions. And this can be really handy if you're just shooting basic video and you want to get a decent exposure. But the people who are more serious into video are pretty specific about what shutter speed they want to shoot at. And they do no want the camera to go in and just change something on them because it got a little bit darker. And so that's why I'm recommending leaving it on for a basic user. But for the more serious shooter, turn it off so that your shutter speeds stay exactly where you wanted them to be. A number of options, I guess for audio recording. Do you want the camera to record audio or not? That's what the built in microphone's right on the camera. If it is recording, do you want to be able to go in and record or adjust the levels of the recording? And so, you may have saw earlier, my camera was in the video mode and you could see the sound levels going up and down as it could hear noise. And so, you could go in here and monitor it and adjust it if you want to. And so if you want to see that audio level display or not see that, you could turn that on and off in the camera. Under windy conditions, wind will be buffeting the camera and causing a very ugly sound. If you are gonna be in a windy situation it can kind of muffle that wind noise. And so only turn that on in windy conditions, 'cause otherwise it's gonna muffle the sound recording and not get you as clean a quality sound as possible. When you are shooting movies, 'cause we got the movie marker there. See that? You can shoot with a variety of aspect ratios. So if you are shooting to a cine... A very wide cinema look to your images you can put on a very wide crop to it. If you want to have a safety zone, like a lot of times on HD TVs, you don't want to have anything important in that outer 10% of the frame. You can have that show up or you can just have a guide frame, or a center frame, just for compositional reasons. And so, this is an on and off... You don't get to choose which one here. That's in the next setting. But whether it's turned on or off, it's done here. And so, normally, these types of things I like to have leave turned off unless I know I have a specific need for them. Marker settings is where it allows you to choose which one of these settings you want. So you can dive in here and choose in which one of the aspect or guideline frames that you want to have. Next up, four of nine. Going back to some still shooting stuff. So, silent shooting is where the camera uses an electronic shutter compared to an electronic... Electronic shutter versus a mechanical shutter. So let's talk a little bit about electronic versus mechanical shutters and what that actually means. So let's talk about a normal shutter operation. So we have our first, we have our second mechanical shutter. The sensor is exposed to light so it's getting information to the view finder where you're lookin' at your image. You press on the shutter release. It needs to close, prep the sensor for the image. Here's the image. The problem is is that shutter opening sometimes causes a little bit of vibration in the camera and causes a little bit of motion of the camera while it's actually shooting the photo. Which would result in a blurry photo if there's very much. Generally it's not a big problem. And then to end the shutter, we're gonna have the second shutter come in, cut it off and then return to its open position. So the problem with this system is that we have to close the shutter and then open it before we start. Which sometimes causes either a little bit of noise, or a little bit of vibration. We have a couple of different options. We have something called e-Front Curtain Shutter which we'll see here in a moment in the menu system. And the way this works, is the pixels just turn on and they scan on to start the exposure, so there's no mechanical first shutter. But there is a mechanical second shutter to close it off. And so it does this with kind of a scanning motion. Now a true Silent Shutter does this all electronically. And so what it does, is it basically turns the pixels on and off scanning line by line from the bottom to the top of the frame. And this does so without any physical movement, without any noise. And so there's some real advantages to having a silent shutter. But the problem is, is that the scanning process takes a bit of time. I don't know how long it takes, I'm estimating around 125th of a second. So if you have something that moves more quickly than you would need 125th of second for, it's gonna be a little bit distorted by this scanning process. And so, I decided to test the cameras out and shoot a test chart which should be straight lines up, down, left, and right using a mechanical shutter. And I'm panning the camera from right to left while I'm doing this. I used the e-Front Curtain shutter which was normal, so that works just fine. But using the silent shutter you can see the distorted look on this. For video it's often considered the jello effect. And so, it's the scanning process. And by choosing a faster shutter speed it may be sharper, but it's still distorted. Now how this affects photographs in the real world, if you're panning your camera down the street with a car everything that's straight up and down is gonna to be angled a little bit. If you are shooting something that is round and rolling past the camera, it is gonna be no longer round. It's gonna be slightly distorted. So it is not good for action and moving photographies. So you have to be very careful with the silent shutter. And so, it's not available with a bunch of other things going on on the camera. And so there's a number of restrictions and ways that you can set the camera up if you do want to use silent shooting. There are some other issues that rolling shutter, banding can be a problem. The reason that I would choose silent shutter is if I'm trying to be very discreet, and I'm not shooting too much action. And so let's say I was at a meeting. And people were talking at the meeting and they get up to the podium and talk and I wanted to be very discreet and not make any noise at all. That would be a good time to be in a silent shutter. So potentially in a theater type environment, a courtroom, or any place where you didn't want to make any noise. Possibly for wildlife photography. But not for wildlife action because of that distorting effect. And so I would leave this turned off. But it's something know that is a tool that you can go to from time to time when it's appropriate. A much better option is the e-Front Curtain Shutter. This is gonna reduce some of the shutter bounce in this camera... Which really is not much of problem at all in this camera, but will be a little bit quicker in the shutter lag. 'Cause on every camera there is a shutter lag from the time you press the button to the time you actually get the photo. And this is just a little bit less time 'cause that shutter doesn't have to close and then open in front. And then you don't have the vibration. And there seems to be virtually no problem, image degradation at all with the e-Front Curtain Shutter shutter synchronization. So that one seems to be fine to be left on all the time. Do you want to be able to release the shutter when there is no lens on the camera? For safety protocol, it is probably best to leave this on disable. If you're gonna be using this with a telescope or some sort of funky adapter that's when you would want to leave this on enable. So that you could fire it without that connection. Do you want to be able to take pictures without a memory card in the camera? It can't store anything. So for safety reasons, probably best to leave this on disable. New in the A 6500 is the SteadyShot which is the image stabilizer of the sensor built into the camera. You can turn that on and off. If you're hand holding the camera I would recommend leaving it turned on. It does use just a tad bit more of battery. So if you were trying to conserve on battery you can turn it off. If you are shooting from a tripod, it's probably gonna be okay with the SteadyShot turned on, but you may need to turn it off if for some reason it's getting a feedback and it's trying to move on its own. A lot of times the manufacturers will tell you that it's perfectly fine to leave it on when it's on a tripod. But there are some cases where just turn it off if you're not getting sharp photos from a tripod it might be because the sensor is moving around, looking for movement to steady. You can go in and you can tweak some of the SteadyShot settings if you have kind of an unusual lens on your camera. So in here, you can have it automatically determining what it needs to do according to the focal length of a lens that you have on the camera. Or you can go in and tell the camera, here's the focal length lenses that I'm using and then it's gonna figure out a way to steady that. "Cause the way that the sensor needs to move back and forth is different from a wide angle to a telephoto lens. And so this is only gonna be necessary if you are hooking up unusual lenses that are non-Sony lenses on the camera.

Class Description

We know what it’s like to dive right into taking pictures with your new camera. But reading dense technical manuals can be time-consuming and frustrating. Get the most out of your new Sony A6500 with this complete step-by-step walkthrough 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:
  • How to set and work with the advanced video capabilities
  • How to maximize the autofocus system
  • How to set and customize the menu 

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 Sony A6500 settings to work for your style of photography.


Nichola Johnson


a Creativelive Student

I've owned the A6000 since it came out and still learned a TON from John's A6500 class. I will definitely be getting his original A6000 class. I'm SO glad he's doing Sony cameras now. Thanks John G. - You are a truly great teacher!

Lee Kneisz

I bought the a6000 course a while back and when I upgraded to the a6500 this was a no-brainer. I love how comprehensive the coverage is and it was a great refresher on previous features. If you're a newbie to the Sony a6500 this is a must!