Sony A7r III Fast Start

 

 

Lesson Info

Menu Functions: Camera Settings 1 Continued

So folks, we are making our way through the menu system, and we've got a lot of items to go through. But there's a lot of fun stuff to be discovered in here, so it's worth a good tour. So let's continue on our tour here. And we are in the first camera settings tab on to page six right now. All right, the AF Illuminator is something that, from a technical standpoint, is very cool. It emits a little bit of a beam, a little flashlight to help you focus under low light conditions. However, it is also something that is very annoying to anyone who is being photographed, 'cause you got this bright light shining in their face. My guess is that this is not really all that helpful in most situations, and probably would be something that would be best turned off in most cases. Center lock AF. This is another kind of historical item that Sony has had on their cameras for many, many years. The lock-on auto focus that we had talked about earlier has kind of taken the place of this, but one of the th...

ings that you can do with this is you can use it in the video, and it does enable you to kind of pinpoint your subject and then have a button that you press to lock it on to that subject. If you use the regular lock-on auto focus, it tends to take the most dominate subject that it sees in the frame, which may not always be the case, so this may be a solution around it, but it is a little bit more clunky to use, and so it's not something that gets a lot of use by a lot of users. This is not face party. It may look like face party. It is face priority, and Sony has just, somehow, not been able to afford enough vowels to put it in there. So, this is face priority in auto focus, and we have just a couple of little items in this sub-menu. You can set the camera to turn on so that it recognizes and focuses on faces, which is pretty good, but remember, you wanna have the eye in focus, and so I think eye auto focus might be even superior to this, and as we saw in our demos earlier, does a very, very good job of it. The other item in here is simple turning on the frame before you actually press the shutter. And so it depends on how often you wanna see that frame with the faces that you're focusing on, and so there's just a couple of small little items in there. AF tracking sensitivity. And so when your camera is focusing, there is a balance between jumping to every new thing it sees and sticking with the original subject that you have, and so this allows us to go in and customize the response time it makes, and so, the question you wanna ask is, do you wanna stay locked on your first subject? And so, if you are on your subject and somebody else walks in front of you or in between you and your subject, do you want it to immediately switch over or kind of delay because that might be a referee that's running off to the other side? And so it depends a little bit on the type of action that you're shooting. If you definitely want it super responsive, you know, like a race leader at the finish line, who is ever closest to you, then it would be on five. Locked on examples might be tennis or butterfly swimming, tennis because if you think about it, people are swinging their rackets and their arms out in front of them, and you don't necessarily want the camera to focus on the ball or the racket or the arm. With butterfly swimming, when you're photographing it from the front, there's a lot of water that kicks out in front of the swimmer, and you don't want the camera to focus on that water rather than the swimmer itself. So, for most people, leaving it three, as standard, until you see a particular problem that you need to adjust it from there, and so those are mostly for the sports photographers there. (clears throat) The auto focus system can be changed between the phase detection and the contrast detection if you are using the Sony adapters with their Sony lenses from the A Mount system. You can choose to use one or the other. The phase detection will be faster. The contrast will be more accurate. So, a bit of a trade off there. Auto focus with the shutter. Now, we've talked about this a little bit before. It's called back button auto focus. The camera has an AF on button on the back of the camera, but for it to be really valuable in a traditional sense, you have to turn off the focusing of the shutter release and if you wanna turn that off, you can turn it off here, and so you would set that into the AF with shutter into the off position. Then you're gonna be able to use the AF on button on the back of the camera and take a picture without the camera having to refocus. Moving on to page seven of 14, continuing on with auto focus options, pre-auto focus will put the camera into an always auto focusing mode, and this is, something definitely most people are gonna have turned off, because it just, anytime the camera is on, anytime the LCD is on, it's just focusing all the time, and so this would help you focus a little bit more quickly, 'cause it's always trying to focus on whatever the camera is pointed at, but it's gonna definitely waste a lot of battery power and it's just not gonna work out for a lot of people 'cause it's always changing on you. The eye-start AF is an option that you can use when you are using the adapted Sony lenses on the Sony mounts, and what would happen here is that the camera would start to focus as soon as you held the camera up to your eye. (clears throat) AF area registration. Now, this is another memorized, customized, pretty cool feature. What you can do is, you can choose a particular area where you like your camera to be focused. Let's say you want a composition where the focusing point is off to the right hand side. You can move the focusing point off to the right hand side, hold down the function key for two seconds to memorize that point, and then you can set one of your custom buttons as a recall, so that you can bring up that focusing point whenever you want it. And in order to do that, there's a couple things that you need to do. Number one, you need to turn this feature on so that it actually works. Two, you need to move the focusing point where you want it. Three, you would press the function button for two seconds. And then maybe four and five is, you need to program another button as that focusing recall option, and so it's a good option for anyone who wants to move the focusing point more quickly than you could with just the joystick on the back of the camera. Delete registered AF area. And so, if you just wanna simply delete that, you can obviously come in here and do it as well as programming a custom button to do it. AF auto area clear. The focusing box that's gonna show you where the camera focused will stay on after you've pressed halfway down to focus. In some cases, you don't wanna look at that box. You know it's focused on your subject. You want that box to disappear, and so some of you may wanna have that box disappear. I kind of like to leave it left on, to know that the area that I focused and which subject it was. Display continuous auto focus area. And so, these are the little green boxes that will come up to show you where your camera is focused at, and they're kind of handy, in most cases, to show you how well the camera is tracking action. In some cases, you might find them disturbing, in which case you might wanna turn them off there. Next up, we're on to page eight of 14, continuing on with focusing. So, next up are some little brackets that we can turn on or off just to show us where the phase detection area is. We might want these turned on to know where the camera is gonna do the best job at tracking subjects, and so if you are doing sports photography, you generally should probably keep your subject within this area. Granted, this is almost the entire size of the frame, not that big a deal, but it is where your camera is better at performing auto focus. If you are using one of the adapted Sony lenses and you are using the phase detection system, it's possible for those lenses to be a little bit out of sync, you might say, with where exactly it needs to be focusing, and so you can do something called AF micro adjust. You do not need to do this with the native Sony E-mount lenses on the camera, 'cause it's using their contrast detection. It knows if it's in focus or not. With the phase detection system, it's an estimation of where the focus is, and it can be off, and this allows you to dive in and adjust for that if necessary. Moving on to page nine of 14, items dealing with exposure. So, we can do exposure compensation. We have a dial on the top of the camera, and that's how most people are gonna do it, but we can do it in here if we are using auto ISO if we need to, or we can program a button to do it as well. Resetting the EV composition. What will happen here is, do you want the exposure compensation reset to zero if you turn the camera off? Most people would, because it kind of means they probably forgot to adjust their exposure back to where it was supposed to be, at zero, but some people are using exposure compensation all the time and they wanna be able to turn the camera on and off without having to reset it, and so it's a pretty special case here that you would need this, but it is there if you do. Might be the third time we've talked about the ISO settings here. And so, this is just in the menu system so that you can get it set to a different button for customization. 100 is where you gonna try to keep it at most of the time, but as we saw, this camera is very good up to those higher numbers like 6400 and even 12,800. When you are using auto ISO, the way that it changes the ISO or the way it makes it decision on changing which ISO you should have, is by, what's the lowest shutter speed that it can get to? And a good system to choose is automatic shutter speed setting, where the camera will look at the lens that you have on the camera, in this case, a 28 millimeter lens, and it would figure, you probably need the reciprocal of that lens, which is one over 30, 'cause it's the closest number we have to it, and that would be a good shutter speed as the bottom line lowest shutter speed to use if you're letting the camera use auto ISO. But some people are doing, say, travel photography, where they're photographing a static subject and they are very steady at hand-holding their camera, and their camera has great stabilization, like this camera, and they wanna use a slower shutter speed. Some people are photographing people that move around a bit more, and they tend to need a faster shutter speed, and so, standard is pretty good on this, but if you wanted to set it slower, it's gonna utilize slower shutter speeds and it's gonna set faster shutter speeds, setting it to faster when you are using the auto ISO option. Next up is the metering mode. We've seen this a couple times before. Multi-metering is a good, general purpose metering for lots of different purposes. All right, another face party. No, face priority in multi-meter, and so when you are using the multi-meter, do you want it to recognize faces and kind of specially calculate for that in the exposure system? And so it really depends on the skin tones that the person has, but generally, this is gonna be a good thing and it's gonna adjust the exposure ever so slightly for a person's face to get better exposure. Continuing on with exposure on page 10 of 14, we have the spot metering link. Do we wanna keep it in the center of the frame, or do we want to be able to link it to where we are focusing? And a lot of people like to be able to link this to the focusing point. That way they can move it around and even have a little bit smaller size area where it's reading its light, and so a lot of people prefer to have this linked to their focusing point. The camera naturally comes in third step increments when you're changing shutter speeds and apertures, for instance. If you wanted to change it to half stops, you could. I know there's some light meters out there and other systems that work in half stops rather than third stops. Some people prefer that, but third steps is what most people keep it at. Auto exposure lock with the shutter. So, the question is, when you press halfway down on the shutter release, do you want the camera to lock the exposure in? I did an experiment earlier where, you noticed when I was pressing down on the button, it was changing as I moved around, and I had to press the auto exposure lock button in the back of the camera, and it seems that a number of people do like to have this set so that you can lock the exposure, recompose, without having to press that second button on that camera, and it also allows that button freed up so that you can program it for something else, like eye focus or some other preset on the camera, and so this a pretty good system, I think, for most people. All right, this is something that I hope, and I expect, that you will never, ever use. And so, if the light meter in this camera drifted, it just suddenly read everything a little bit on the bright side or a little bit on the dark side, rather than using exposure compensation to fix it, you could dive into here, and that's why there's kind of this very, serious warning adjustment, or warning statement, about adjusting this. And so, you could go in and you could adjust any one of the meters, I believe, in six stop increments if you thought it was a little too bright or a little too dark because the camera just wasn't metering properly. This is in lieu of having to send your camera in to Sony to have some technician adjust the light meter. This allows you to do it, but I don't expect most people ever need to come here and make an adjustment. All right, let's talk a little bit about flash, even though the camera doesn't have a flash. We can jump in here, page 11 of 14, and adjust some of our flash modes. We did see this as well in the function menu, where we talked about it a little bit more in depth, but if you do have a flash on the camera, you can adjust which mode it uses here. Most of the time we'll just leave it off 'cause we don't have a flash on there. If you do use flash, I encourage you to experiment with powering the flash down, so that it's not overpowering your subject. You can often get better skin tones with that. Exposure compensation set. So, when you have a flash on the camera and you use the exposure compensation on the camera, do you want that to affect the flash power? For somebody who doesn't know a lot about how to control the power and the lighting of your ambient exposure and your flash, it's probably simple just to combine them all and do everything at once, but for people in the know who really wanna make fine tune adjustments and change the power between the flash and the camera, they probably wanna keep these things separate with ambient only. As I mentioned before, you can hook up multiple Sony flashes to do a wireless system. We are not gonna get into that in this class here, but it is certainly capable, and first step is to go ahead and turn that wireless system on right here in the menu system. Red eye reduction with the flash will fire a multitude of bright flashes at your subject, which can be very disturbing, so you may wanna leave that turned off. It does solve the red eye problem, but to be honest, red eye is not really the big deal that it used to be, because it's so easily fixed in post production these days. It does delay the firing of the shutter release and it's also just a bit annoying to your subjects. On to page 12, color, white balance, and image processing. And so, in here you can choose which white balance you wanna use. We talked about this earlier in the camera, but same things apply. We do see that there are three different custom modes down there. And so, what you can do here is, you would photograph a white sheet of paper, use the set button in here, you're gonna use the control wheel while pointed at that neutral object, you'd select where you'd wanna save that, and have that all set up so that you can have a preset white balance that's set for a particular room. Priority set in auto white balance. In auto white balance, we now have slight different temperature adjustments on, how much do you wanna correct for that white balance? So, in a room with tungsten light, we're gonna see white pieces of paper as white. We're not gonna notice as much orange, but we do notice that there is kind of a warm feeling to the room, and the question is, how much of that do you want to keep in your image if you are setting auto white balance? And so, standard keeps it at the traditional setting. And the truth is that it's still allowing in some of that warm light when you set it at standard, but most of us kind of like that warm light. If you're trying to do something very clinical, like you're photographing that has color and it has to be absolutely correct color, then you would probably wanna set this to auto white balance, white, where it really, absolutely corrects for it. It doesn't try to leave any sort of that warmth at all, and if you want a bit more of it, you can set it to the ambience setting. All right, DRO auto HDR. And so, this is for people shooting JPEGS where the camera will go in, and it's gonna play around with the curves of the exposure system, which means it's going to adjust for the highlights and the shadows. So, let's look at an example. And so, in an area where we have some bright sun and some shadow, you'll see that it's kind of holding back those bright areas and it's allowing a little bit more light in the shadows. Now, this is called dynamic range optimizer. There is five different levels, and you can choose where you want it to be at, and this is all done with a single shot in the JPEG setting. And so, this is very similar to what anyone could do, shooting a JPEG, putting it into post production software, and playing around with some of the sliders as far as the exposure system, but here it's just simply doing it in the camera. A similar system but using multiple shots, so you need to be with static subjects and on a tripod, using the JPEG system. This is the high dynamic range option, and what you'll notice, if you wanna take a look at the histograms as examples in here, is the highlights. It is noticeably holding back on the more extreme six point EV option on this, and so, once again, it's trying to lighten up the shadows a little bit, hold back the brights from becoming too bright, to make sure that it's within the range that our cameras and sensors can handle. And so, this is something that you've gotta be careful with using, because you do need to be on a tripod. The other solution, where I think, which actually works much better, is just shoot a RAW image and you'll be able to achieve these same results, but you do have to have the software to work with that in a RAW image. This allows you to do it in a JPEG if you need it with that. Creative style allows you to adjust the exact look of your JPEGs. I mentioned this before. This is very similar to shooting with different types of film, like Kodak or Fuji film. They each have their own unique look to it. And so, in here you can either choose one of these, or you can get in and you can tweak it yourself. And so, let's go ahead and take a look on this one. So, let's dive into the menu system here and see what we can adjust on this. So, I'm gonna dive in to the menu, and I think we were on page 12, and we're gonna go in here to creative style and actually, I'm gonna see if I can, enter this, go to the right. Well, let's see. Creative style here. Actually, we'll just have to work from here. And so, we can choose different color tones, and you can see the colors and the tones are changing slightly. I'm gonna play around with the one that I actually use from time to time, which is black and white. And, you'll notice that the arrow off to the right allows us to go in and make further changes, and so, if we wanna make this more contrasty, or less contrasty, we can adjust that here. Let's go back and add a couple points of contrast. Obviously, no saturation here, and then in sharpness, we can increase the sharpness or decrease the sharpness of this, and so now we have a customized black and white mode. And the fact is, is that we can go up here and we can do everything. Here's a sunset mode, which gives us very saturated colors, also very warm in color. And so, here we can change it and add it and crank it up even more. We can crank up that saturation even more and play around with all of the looks. Now, once again, this is only going to work with JPEG images. This is the type of thing that you would have full control over with RAW images on your own, but it doesn't enable you to get JPEGs that look exactly the way you want them. There may be cases where you're shooting photos for somebody else. You're giving them the JPEGs off the camera, you're keeping the RAWs, and they need the JPEGs to look a certain way, and rather than Photoshopping all of them, you could just tweak it in your camera so that it's better for your needs straight out of the camera. All right, next up is picture effect. And so, this is heavy Photoshop in the camera, and so if you really wanna tweak with your camera, this is maybe the Instagram mode, if you will, in the camera. This is where you'll add a lot of unusual and fun filters. We're not going to into all of these. Be aware that any arrow to the right hand side has additional options for you to change that particular image, and so there's going to be all sorts of goofy things that you can do in here that's gonna give you a different look straight out of the camera. Picture profile. Okay, so for all of you video shooters out there, this is what you may be interested in here. And so, when you shoot video, there isn't anything, at least right yet, that's recording in RAW, at least with Sony cameras like this. You are recording a compressed file that has the colors and the tones and all of that kind of baked into your video file, and here is where you get to have some serious control over the color and contrast and tones of the images that you're recording in video, and so, a lot of people who shoot serious video want to shoot video that is very, very flat, not too constrasty, and then they're gonna color grade it and they're gonna adjust the contrast and the colors later on, and so they're trying to capture as much dynamic range and as much tonality while they're recording their images, and different people shooting video have different workflows and different systems that they're using, and so this camera has a number of different options in here, and we're not gonna go through all of these. Some of these are not very, are not used very often. So, the S-Log two, S-log three, are a couple of the more popular options that video users will use. Now, as we just saw with the creative styles, you can select one of these options and then you can go in and adjust it and tweak it even more, and so, buried more inside of this are black levels and gamma and the knee and the color mode and the saturation, which will be even more extensive ways of adjusting things, and so sometimes, there will be a video crew with multiple cameras and multiple users, and they're gonna wanna get their cameras all synced up according to what their commercial needs are, and so for the average person just shooting some basic video clips, yeah. This is beyond what you're going to need. You're probably fine just keeping it as is. But for anyone who is really wanting to get in and have proper material for editing, it depends on how you're editing, what programs you're using, where it's being used, and how you wanna use it. There's a lot to dive into. This is probably a whole class unto itself right here as far as shooting video and getting color correct. But, it's not something that you're gonna need to really worry about if you're shooting stills, 'cause you're just gonna be shooting RAW images, and then you'll be able to adjust from there, but this is very important for anyone shooting video in a serious manner with this camera. Next up is our focus assist. We have a focus magnifier, which is a way of just jumping in so that we can check focus really quickly. We saw this earlier with my DMF focus, the way that the camera would automatically jump in and focus, and so there's something that you could program into a button, which is very handy. You can control how long the camera is zoomed in. Generally, no limit is good because it will jump back when you press halfway down on the shutter release, but if you do want it to jump back more quickly, you can set it to do that. Here's an important one that I think needs to be changed in the camera, because I think it comes at one times instead. If you change it to 6.2 times, one pixel on the LCD will be one pixel on the sensor, so it's the best way for judging focus. And so, change this to 6.2. I know it's kind of an odd number, but that's just basically the relationship between sensor resolution and monitor resolution, and that way you're gonna be checking focus at the proper number. Auto focus in focus magnification. So when you are magnified in focus, do you want to be able to focus? In most cases, it's gonna be a matter of convenience that it's good to be able to do that, but there are some cases where that, may not work out, and if not, then you can turn it off here. Manual focus assist is when you manually focus, the camera senses that you're turning the manual focus ring and immediately zooms in so that you can see your subject more clearly on that, and if you are wanting to focus, very critically, this is a nice feature to have. Sometimes it's very irritating and you're not, 'cause you wanna be able to see the whole image, and so then, in which case, you can leave that turned off, and you may wanna leave it turned off if you use focus peaking, which is something we're going to talk about in just a moment. So, we have a whole sub menu here for our peaking settings. First off is, we can turn peaking on and off. Normally, I think, most people are gonna leave it turned off unless they are specifically wanting it on. If it is turned on, you can choose the different levels that you can see it, and then you can choose different colors in which to see it. And so, this is something that a lot of people like to use, so let me go ahead and do a little demo here and show you how this works. So, we're gonna need to make a couple of changes. First change I'm gonna make is, I'm gonna put my camera in manual focus, so that this will actually work. Let's go ahead and, you know what? That sunset mode is driving me nuts, so I am going to turn that off right here and now and let's just leave it on neutral. That seems pretty good. Okay, so we are looking for focus peaking, and we're gonna go down to the peaking settings and let's, whoops, I keep doing that. I work with too many cameras, folks. All right, so I gotta press the center button to go in, and I'm gonna go press the center button again, and I wanna turn this on, 'cause I'm trying to show you what this looks like, and in order to make this as clear as possible, we're gonna turn it on high, and then let's change it to red, so I think it's as easy to see as possible. All right, well, that seems pretty easy to see right there! And so, as I focus, well, you can see that focus magnification is jumping in, and let's see if we can see that red. Let's move the camera over just slightly, and we may need to get it out. So, this is the focus magnification, and we do see the red highlights coming in there. You see those areas? It's telling me that I'm focusing on that area properly. Now, I'm gonna change this so that that focus magnification does not happen, which is the MF assist. I'm gonna turn that off, and so now we're gonna stay with our little bit wider shot, and as I focus, you can see that, as it comes in to focus, it has that shimmering red in the highlight. Now, from somebody who does get a little bit picky about their manual focusing, I will have to say that focus peaking, it's pretty good. It's not super, super accurate, 'cause what's happening is that it's just kind of picking up on anything that has contrast, and if it's got good contrast and it's a little out of focus, it shimmers in red as well. And so it depends on how much you're having in focus and how critical you need to be at any particular time. But, you're probably better off in magnification than you are using peaking. Peaking can be handy because you don't have to zoom in and you can still see the entire composition. But for peaking, I'm thinking that a lot of people are gonna leave that turned off unless they need it for a specific type of shooting that they're doing. All right. Final page of settings one, anti flicker shooting. So, this is something that started a few years ago with Canon and then Nikon added it, and now we're seeing it in more and more of the manufacturers. So, what's happening with this, is that fluorescent lights flicker when they are turned on. They flicker so fast that we don't see it with our own eyes, but the cameras can see it when they shoot with very short, fast shutter speeds. So in one second, these fluorescent lights will go up and down in their power between 100 and 120 times. Now, when a camera fires at 10 frames a second, it's kind of hit and miss as to whether the light is gonna be at the top of the peak or the bottom of the peak, and so you're gonna end up with photos that vary a little bit in their brightness, and it will depend on the light, but I've seen where it will go up and down by almost a stop of brightness, and if you're trying to take a collection of photos, it's a nightmare that you have to go in and adjust half of the photos brighter or half of them darker to fix them all and get them all the same brightness. So, what happens in this case when you turn it on is, rather than just shooting the photo immediately, it waits and times it for the next peak during that system, and because it happens so, frequently per second, you don't have to wait very long. But, if you do have your camera set to 10 frames per second, you might be getting nine and a half frames per second, or nine frames per second, and so there is a slight penalty to pay, but you're gonna get nice, even results from it. So, here I found a light that actually has a bit of flicker, because when I take these four images, I did not change the exposure at all, but I can see definite exposure differences between these first four images. Then, by using a flicker reduction system, I got nearly identical. There's a little bit of difference between two and three, right? Two and three right here, but it's very, very close, and it saves me lots of time from processing images later on, and so, if you never shoot under fluorescent lights, you could safely turn this off. It's also something that you could occasionally just turn on when you are under fluorescent lights, and so if you shoot in basketball or, basketball gyms or any sort of arena that uses fluorescent lights, and you're using fast shutter speeds, that's when you wanna use this. If you're using slower shutter speeds, it's not really a big deal, but it's those faster shutter speeds where this gets to be a problem. Face registration. So, the camera can recognize faces and can remember faces as well, and so if you want, you can do a new registration. You can order a number of different faces in the camera, and it will recognize those faces and it will prioritize focusing on one face over another if you want it to do so. And so, then you can turn on face, registered face priority, where it will look for the registered faces before it will the other faces, and so if you have kids up on a stage play, it's gonna recognize them and not the other kids, and that's what it's gonna focus on.

Class Description

Get the most out of your new Sony A7r III with this complete step-by-step walkthrough of the camera’s features. You'll learn why this camera is highly sought after by enthusiasts and professional photographers alike. Join expert photographer John Greengo as he gives you all the information you need to understand the camera's buttons, menus, and functions.

In this Fast Start class John will discuss:

  • Improved performance at 10fps for shooting action shots
  • High speed continuous shooting
  • Improved 5 axis image stabilization
  • Faster, lower-noise image processing
  • High quality 4K video

John is a CreativeLive veteran instructor and an experienced photographer. With over 50 Fast Start classes in the CreativeLive catalog, he will discuss the complete breakdown of your camera’s exposure, focus, metering, video and more. John will also explain how to customize the Sony A7r III settings to work for your style of photography.