Sony® A99 - DSLR Fast Start

Lesson 3/10 - Button Layout: Back Side


Sony® A99 - DSLR Fast Start


Lesson Info

Button Layout: Back Side

There was a movie mode on the top dial if you recall, but there's also a movie button on the back of the cameras, so this is the start and stop record. If you're serious about shooting movies, you want to put it in the movie mode and top, because then it crops the screen sixteen by nine and kicks over to all your movie settings that you normally have. However, if you're just taking pictures in manual program anything you want and you want to start recording video, just hit the button and it goes into automatic movie mode. If you want to do manual movie, you've got to go into the manual mode on the mod ill on the top of the camera. So it's just kind of a quick, quick movie mode, you might say, but it's also your normal recording, start recording and stop recording next up auto focus manual focus and as we go through these buttons, most of these buttons on the back of the camera are customizable, so anything you want to customize into this button, you could by default it's your auto focu...

s manual focus button, which means if you haven't auto focus lens on here and you get it focused, you can press in on this button, and it basically turns off the autofocus system so that you could either recompose the shot or refocus the shot and take the picture, and the camera won't try to refocus again. So it's kind of like a focus lock, but technically it's a focus off feature. But you can go in and customize this with thirty one different options, according to what you think is most important for where your finger lies on that particular button. And so, as I was customizing the camera, I was changing that to auto focus on for back button focusing and what I found is that my thumb, maybe it's, not as long as some people, some had a hard time reaching it, and so I changed that over to a l, but I was able to customize the a l button to auto focus on so you could have either one or both. If you're a real fumble fumble fingers, bumble fingers or some what is that? Something like that, but this but the a l button is normally auto exposure lock. If you want to lock the exposure during a program shutter priority or aperture priority. Normally, when you press down on the shutter release, it checks the light and it's constantly adjusting for new light as you pan around if you want to lock that in would press the a l button. Now you'll notice on the previous button in this, but there are also blue settings. Anything in blue has to do with playback, and so we have a zoom in and we have a zoom out features. So if you were playing back a picture you can zoom in to check sharpness, you can zoom back out to the full image of it. The a l also let's see what else does it does. If you have a flash on it, it will kick you into slow sink, which is a slow shutter speed with use of the flash. This could be really handy in dark environment, so that you can see more of the ambient life, as well as having a little bit of flash involved. We have our multi selector or joystick side to side up down, and then you also push in on the middle button to activate. So as you go through the menu system, you can kind of just use this one little from dial for going up, down, left, right and in to enter display button changes to displace. I'm going to show you a bunch of the different displays on the camera in a little bit, the functions, but this is kind of a short cut to some of the more most popular modes that you can get into on the camera, and so see if I have this bring up, so you bring up this, but it kind of brings up this thumbnail kind of a heads up display of everything that's going on with the camera, and if you press the function, but you can go in and you could start resetting a lot of features now, the drive mode right here at the first there's a drive mode button on the top of the camera, so there is a faster way to get to it, but it's here as well so that you can see kind of everything in one fell swoop on the back of the camera, and then you can just navigate around with the little joystick and go in and make the settings adjustments whenever you're hovering over the right adjustment, you can also just use the front dialogue or the back dial to change that setting without actually even going into the city, which is even faster, and so there's a whole bunch of settings on the left, there's a whole bunch of settings on the right, these air once again, the most popular settings that you're likely to need. I think when you use this camera in the field, it's unlikely that you'll ever go into the menu system once you get the menu set up, everything is going to be here that you're going to want to get to and if that wasn't enough, they have a little bit more just off to the side in here they've got some exposure compensation which we saw there was a button on the top but you can also do flash exposure compensation esso and you can turn the steady shot on and off all through the function but so that's kind of the go to button in my mind on the camera one that I was going in and out of quite frequently all right, right below that um maybe maybe my least favorite button on the camera it's a smart tell a converter and what this does is it basically zooms in yeah there's a couple of different modes that I frankly haven't paid a lot of tension too and it's got one where it's a digital zoom where it just magnifies the image up so it takes ten megapixels and fills the frame and you know if you need to fill the frame with those ten megapixels you know it works I don't like doing that all crop it later on it also has one where it takes that ten or so megapixels zooms it up and interpret late sit up to twenty four megapixels and that sounds good in theory but you can't make something from nothing uh and so there's some give on this you can do this and photo shop where you take an image and you raise it up and you make it appropriate for larger print sizes, but you're not adding in inequality here, so this is not one of the buttons that I use a lot on the camera little access lamp down there basically means that you're writing information to the memory card. Most important is you don't want to take the memory card out of the camp because it's writing information it's like the old to me, it's it's very much like the old lights that you had in front of dark rooms that means somebody's working in there and that's what it means on the camera, the auto focus range we're going to get into this when we get into the focusing system, this camera has, shall we say, mohr focusing points than any other camera, and one of the options that you can do in this is you can set a range that you're focusing. For instance, I think of a good example, let's say you're photographing a basketball game and you're not in the front row and you want to photograph people that are out on the court, but there's people crossing by in front of you, you don't want your camera refocusing on those people that are right in front of you, you could set a range and it depends on the lens that you have on there, let's say, from twenty feet to infinity or you could set the range from thirty feet to fifty feet and it's on lee going to go back and forth in that rage. And so you can really specify where you wanted to focus, and you could eliminate things in the foreground or things in the background. Maybe if you're on the court in basketball, you don't want the camera to focus on the crowds in the stands way behind, so you could limit it just to the near court that you're working on. And so for sports photographers, this is going to help speed up the focusing in those situations. Most people in general photography aren't going to use it, it's only when you're in a setup situation that you're working quite a bit of time in because it takes just a moment or two to set up. But it's not something that you do on a regular basis playback and elite right down there in blue, obvious things for your pictures and getting rid of him let's jump over the left side of the camera, we have a custom button just free for all custom button customize it, whatever you want, you got thirty one different options. You'll see it when you get into the menu system as we go into the side. We got a lot of little port doors that we can get into. It's got a pc flash sink so anyone who's working in a studio hooks up to studio strobes sinks that one to fiftieth of a second nicely. You'll have on a professional camera, of course, remote terminal if you want to have a cable release so that you are not touching the camera when you fire it. Product photography, landscape, photography and so forth you can pick up one of these for about sixty bucks or so very handy device. Very simple. Traditional cable release there's a little speaker on the side of the camera so you can hear your movies on the little bottom door. We have our d c power. And so if you want to have continuous power, you're in a studio environment, technical environment where you need to have constant power to the camera. You could get one of these devices for it. Sells for about eighty bucks over on the right hand side, we have a couple of our little jack's. First up we have our mike jackson. You could hook up different microphones. Sony remember, we all know, is huge when it comes to the video industry, so they have lots of microphones. They have their own little tiny microphone, the e c m a l s t one why that just rolls off the tongue, doesn't it sells for about one hundred ten dollars, or so? They have larger shotgun mikes that are going to cost you two hundred bucks, and then for anyone who wants to get really serious, xlr, I don't need to say anymore if you don't know what I'm talking about, you don't care about it. If you do know what I'm talking about, I don't need to talk about it and what's kind of nice about this is that utilizes the smart shoe technology you plug in there and it's going to give you a couple of jack's for xlr microphones for really great sound, but it does cost ah, fairly pretty penny on that one headphone jack, so you can stick in your standard headphones, and then we have our final connections hd my out. So if you're going up the camera to an hd tv for a slide show or video, you can also go take the video, feed out of the camera, get un compressed video, which is what I let a lot of the video nerds want is they want on compressed video out of the camera, so that it's the pure signal and you can have the screen on in back of the camera as well, so they can both be recording and on. And then, finally, we have our usb connections, so if you want to download from your camera straight to your computer, you can do that over on the right hand side of the camera, like a lot of the top in professional cameras. Now we have two card slots, something I have not seen done on any other camera. The first slot is a duel type of slot. It can shoot either sd memory cards or memory stick pro cards. Now sony has a long history of their own proprietary media format, but luckily and this one, it will take their old media cards. But you can also stick into independent sd cards. If you want. You want to pay attention for anybody who is shooting video, the cards speed, I would highly recommend class ten or higher, which is what many of the cards have these days. There's, some older ones that are classics. One of the unique options on this camera is that you can record movies to both cards, but if you do want to do that, you need class ten or higher on both memory cards. All right, jump around on the front side of the camera so we haven't a f illuminator, which helps the camera focus under low light conditions, I you know, I don't like to be a big beacon. I like to turn off the beeps I'd like to turn off the lights. If you were a private investigator, you would definitely want to turn this light off because when you're sitting in your car, shooting pictures at night time, you don't want the light coming on to let people know you're taking pictures. I found that if you know where to point the brackets, you don't need it. And it's not good for that foreign distance either. Eyes we got the custom button we spoke of that obviously your lens release for taking the lenses on enough. Okay, this is it. Silent multi control dial knob. Okay, I'm going to have to say, ah, this is the most creative, innovative knob button dial that I have seen on a cameron twenty years. I mean, normally we got buttons, we got dial's, we got levers, I've seen some bad things. This one is really cool and so what? It is it's a button. So you got a little bit depressing here, but it's a silent and so they got no clicking noise and this is really handy. This comes from there video technology because people, when they're shooting video, need to adjust the sound volume, but they don't want to go click click click click click I pick it up on the microphones and so this is a silent control now what's kind of extra cool about this is that you get to program this to do whatever you want there's a number of limit there's a limited option and so you could have a change focusing modes or focusing points and so forth but you can have it by pressing in on the button and turning the dial the same time which is a little awkward which is good because that changes the mode of what it does and then you would press in the button turn the dial to change something else and so if it seems complicated it's really quite easy and it's very nice on dh as I say most innovative lever na button camera control I've seen in a long, long time we have our preview button down here which is our depth of field previous so if you want to stop the aperture down to the working aperture, you get to see what that's going to look like through the viewfinder and the remote sensors. So if you do get that remote control that's what it's pointed at we're going away down to the bottom side of the camera battery uses a info lithium battery which gives you very good specific information about how good the battery is they sell for around fifty bucks or so now battery life on this camera is not as good as some of its competitors. And now, just because we're looking at electronic screen, that stern not and it actually from the information I can see, it gets better gas mileage with the lcd on the back of the camera, but with a camera that kind of goes to sleep, you're looking at roughly four hundred five hundred shots for battery, and so it depends on how long you leave camera on what mode you have? It'd asst oh, how much life you're going to get out if you leave those viewfinders on all the time it's going to wear it down that's? Why? I prefer to have the auto sensor so that when you hold it up to your eye boom, it would come on. And when you take your eye away, it would immediately go off. So it's, very conservative in the way uses power. But it is a little bit more power hungry than some of the other cameras. Serial number. Make sure you record that so in case it gets stolen, you know how to track it. Standard tripod socket. So it works on all the standard goodies out there and one of the more beefy. Cool looking vertical grips out there and so that vertical grip is going to cost you a little under four hundred bucks and give you a lot of specific controls anyone who shoots a lot of people pictures so portrait photographers, sports photographers you're both shooting people have the camera in the vertical position I could say that this is honestly a great tool behalf if you're just out wanting to backpack and stays lightweight it's possible totally understand not having it but if you do a lot of people photography highly recommended so I think that we should check in with some questions at this point let's do that john you know there's a great question that came in from the internet earlier specifically what you were talking about fell asked again he said does the optional battery grip replicate all of the controls that are available on the front the rear of the camera if you add that extra battery grip you know I haven't let's see we got one over here and let me hold the vertical grip if we get a shot over here and it's got virtually all the buttons I'm trying to think they have put the buttons and slightly different areas and so we have a exposure compensation but where is that would be on the top over there f m a l they got the little joystick we don't have a display button we do have a function button we don't have a play back in the auto focus range it's got all the most important by this so between him and so virtually mirrors it very, very much the same the stuff you need yeah yeah, okay great. Next question is from her g if you use the h e my out can you see the same stuff as you see in the viewfinder? Like the live hissed a gram grid lines and digital level I haven't had a chance to hook that up, but I would imagine so one of the options with the hd am I out is to turn off all the information and so you can get either a perfectly clean feed out or you can get it with information I haven't tested that personally but that's what certainly appears to be the case and so just to follow up fella had also asked can the digital viewfinder display any composition aids like grids and levels? Yes, well, got a got a slide for that doesn't slide for that, john of course there is. Why would a photographer want a camera that has dual card slots like the n ninety nine? Well, when we, uh, there's a slide for that but it's always nice one of the problems that digital cameras have and it's not this camera it's all cameras is that it needs to communicate with the card and every once in a while, there's a failure to communicate it, and for some reason, they just don't. I want to work, and so the solution is to just get a new card in there. And when the cards already in there, that simplifies that process. If you shoot up one card, you can well in this. In this case, you can do a number of different things. You can shoot stills, toe one card movies to another card. You can shoot stills to both cards, you can shoot movies to both cards and so it's, kind of nice. Having all those options, you can shoot rato one card and j peg to the other car. Great. So there's, a lot of creative options that people can come up with. I use it as a very handy place to store an extra card.

Class Description

Join John Greengo for an in-depth step-by-step tour of the Sony®  STL-A99. With a hands-on introduction to your camera's operations, detailed instructions on how all the menus work, and instruction on how to shoot great photos with this specific camera model.