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Tradeoffs

For the vast majority of photos, it would be optimal to have: (a) a very fast shutter speed to "freeze motion" on the subject; (b) a large f-Stop number to ensure that the subject is in focus; and (c) a low ISO to ensure the resulting prints can be enlarged without graininess.

The challenge is that you may not have enough light to achieve all of the above. Each situation has a predetermined "light budget" - which can be spent between the three categories described above. The more you invest in one category, however, the less you have to invest in the others.

When you enter the Lighting Conditions for your photo, you are defining the light budget you will be working with.

The "Subject" area specifies guidelines to determine how to best invest your light budget:

  • The Focus roller is used to define how deep you need your Depth-of-Field (DoF) to be. Think of this as the distance between the nearest and furthest points you want to appear in focus. If you are photographing a single person, for example, you may only need a DoF of two or three feet; on the other hand, if you want to take a picture of someone standing in front of a monument, and you want both the person and the monument to be in focus, you might need several hundred feet.
  • The Distance roller specifies how close to the camera is the subject or point you will be focusing on. This affects both the Depth-of-Field calculation as well as the required shutter speed for a crisp picture.
  • The Motion roller describes the amount of movement in the scene. Scenes with little or no movement can get by with a slow shutter speed, whereas sports photography, for example, requires very fast shutter speeds to freeze the motion in the scene.

Using these guidelines, the "Get recommendations" area will display potential camera settings for your photo. You can easily adjust these recommendations and view what-if alternatives by using the sliders in the "Fine Tune" area. As you move the sliders, notice how the settings change and relevant warnings appear or disappear in the recommendations area.

To get rid of BLUR, SHAKE and/or TRIPOD warnings, increase the shutter speed. A faster speed will avoid blur due to both subject motion as well as "camera shake" inadvertently introduced by the photographer.

To remove the FOCUS warning, increase the f-Stop slider. Having a larger f-Stop will increase the Depth-of-Field of your picture and increase the probability that your entire subject will be in focus.

To remove the GRAINY warning, lower the ISO by moving the slider to the right. A lower ISO setting (100-400) prevents graininess and noise from appearing in your photo.

As you move a slider, the application will automatically move the other two to compensate and maintain a target exposure. In some cases, you might want to deliberately overexpose or underexpose a photo. To do this, simply tap the "Unlock" button and adjust the sliders. The impact on the Exposure of the photo will be updated in real time. Tap the button again to "Lock" the target Exposure to the desired level.

This method can also be used to compensate for scenes that have more or less light than typical. If you select certain Lighting Conditions, take a picture, and the result is too dark or too light, you can lock the target to a more appropriate exposure setting.

At any point in time, if you want to revert back to the original recommendations, simply enter the Subject or Lighting Conditions areas, reselect the settings for your photo and click "Save".

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