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Thread: 60D Exposure level indicator question

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    Ausphotography Regular Geoff Port's Avatar
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    60D Exposure level indicator question

    Hey folks, When I first used my 60D the exposure level indicator moved back and forth as I adjusted the aperture with the main dial when set in AV. Somewhere along the line I have switched something off and the exposure level indicator no longer moves when the main dial is rotated and for the life of me I can't find what it is that I have altered. Read the manual several times regarding exposure level indicator with no joy. I know it will be simple. Can anyone be of assistance please?
    Last edited by Geoff Port; 08-03-2013 at 5:38pm.
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    Ausphotography Irregular Warbler's Avatar
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    Got it set to auto ISO have you?

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Even with Auto ISO set to on, if my understanding of the "main dial" thing being the shutter control, then irrespective of Auto ISO being on or off, the camera should still allow the operator to dial in Exposure compensation.

    Of course I'm not fluent with Canon cameras, but if you're set in Av mode, then you can set quick compensation using the Shutter dial .. rather than the convoluted process of pressing the exposure compensation button and rotating a dial.

    Check page 120 of the manual, and see if that helps. There may be some kind of lock for guarding against accidentally setting exposure compensation
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    Ausphotography Irregular Warbler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    Even with Auto ISO set to on, if my understanding of the "main dial" thing being the shutter control, then irrespective of Auto ISO being on or off, the camera should still allow the operator to dial in Exposure compensation.
    Can't see where he's mentioned Exposure compensation even once Arthur. If he's set it to auto ISO, then the camera will keep adjusting that to maintain exposure levels as he changes either aperture or shutter speed. It may look like the exposure meter is not moving, which as I read it, is the OP's problem. Of course I don't have a 60D to test that theory. Looks like the Safety-Shift Function on the 60D only operates the Aperture or shutter, rather than the ISO as it does on the more expensive models.

    - - - Updated - - -

    If he is talking about using the rear control wheel to set an EV, then I'm pretty sure that needs to be done after first depressing the shutter halfway. Not at the same time, but once the camera's metering system is awake. You can't set an EV if you're in manual though Geoff.
    Last edited by Warbler; 09-03-2013 at 7:04am.

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    Warbler, I'm not set to auto ISO.
    Arthur the main dial is the wheel behind the shutter button. I've read page 120 a dozen times but it dosen't help.
    When first used I would half depress the shutter button and look at the exposure level indicator then rotate the wheel until the indicator was in the neutral (central) position on the indicator. This gave me correct exposure. Now when the shutter is half depressed the indicator needle stays in the center which does not give me any indication as to whether the settings I have will result in under or over exposure.

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    Try setting it back to default settings
    Peter

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    Ausphotography Irregular Warbler's Avatar
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    Well instead of having us all guess, why don't you tell us what mode you're using Geoff? From what you've said in your response I'm guessing you're using the camera in Manual. Is that the case? Or are you using it in Av or Tv? (Never mind I went back to your original post)

    The Mode does make a difference. If I set my 5D3 on auto ISO for example and set the mode dial to M, I can twirl the control wheel on the top of the camera a heck of a lot before the meter shows any change in position. But, you're not in Auto ISO. My pictures would not demonstrate over or under exposure though.

    You haven't inadvertantly set an EV have you? That would only become evident in AV or Tv. As I said, you can't "set" an EV for Manual Mode. If you have done that, it will appear on the LCD panel on top of the camera.

    Resetting as pjs2 suggests, would fix that.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Oh, another trick! One I got I caught with myself, and am ashamed to admit. Check to see if your exposure bracketing is set to on. You'll get one image under, one image correct, and one image over if this on. Does that sound like your problem?

    Have you just started using Av Geoff? Maybe been using only Manual before? The exposure indicator stays in the middle until you run out of combinations to get a correct exposure in Av mode. It does that because as YOU adjust the aperture THE CAMERA adjusts the shutter speed automatically to make sure the exposure level indicator remains in the middle. Sorry if I'm assuming that you didn't know that already.
    Last edited by Warbler; 09-03-2013 at 11:15am.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warbler View Post
    Can't see where he's mentioned Exposure compensation even once Arthur. .....
    Going by the description Geoff posted, this sounds to me like exposure compensation. Just because the exposure compensation button is not used, if the meter is indicating anything other than neutral, then you have exposure compensation dialled in whether you like it or not.

    In Nikon world, and cameras with twin control dials, there is an in camera setting that allows you to make exposure compensation adjustments quickly and easily via direct controlling of the dials, and not requiring the fumble fingers method of pressing the compensation button.

    In Av mode, the idea of it's purpose is that it gives you an automated process for acquiring an image that is exposed in a certain manner in variable light, and also if changes are made to the Aperture.

    What doesn't make sense is Geoff's first line in the next quote!


    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff Port View Post
    ......
    Arthur the main dial is the wheel behind the shutter button. I've read page 120 a dozen times but it dosen't help.
    When first used I would half depress the shutter button and look at the exposure level indicator then rotate the wheel until the indicator was in the neutral (central) position on the indicator. This gave me correct exposure. Now when the shutter is half depressed the indicator needle stays in the center which does not give me any indication as to whether the settings I have will result in under or over exposure.
    If you mount a lens to the camera, turn the camera on, and set it to Av mode ... does the exposure meter indicator vary in every instance of this start up procedure?
    The fact that you have mentioned that setting the meter indicator to the central position indicates that you want a neutral exposure ... which is actually different to your terminology of a correct exposure.
    While a neutral exposure may be giving you a correct exposure, the two terms are not the same thing. Understanding the concepts of metering and exposure, and you'll know why. But this is less important.

    If the meter indicator is not showing a neutral position, then exposure compensation has been set, somehow!!

    If you need to set the meter indicator to a neutral position every time you set up or start up, then I recommend you dump Canon and come to Nikon!

    Exposure compensation has to be deliberately set, and it will remain set in the camera even after the camera is turned off(my experience with a few cameras and brands has shown this to be true for many models).
    I can't imagine that your camera just induces a random meter reading that you have to adjust for.

    When you say this:
    "Now when the shutter is half depressed the indicator needle stays in the center which does not give me any indication as to whether the settings I have will result in under or over exposure."

    Sort of doesn't make sense!
    That is, if the meter indicator is indicating a central(neutral) position, this indicates that your exposure will come out(to use your terminology) correct! You don't have to make any adjustments.
    The camera appears to be operating correctly, and this is how all DSLRs work. They won't just randomly set any exposure value so that you have to make adjustments for.

    This happens in Manual mode tho. If you change to a different lens, then even tho you may be set with the same aperture value with those two lenses, exposure can be slightly different!

    But with your setting, if you don't fully understand the metering mode you're using, not the concept of exposure levels .. ie setting an Ev level for a particular scene, then you may get random exposures from the camera depending on what metering mode you choose to use.

    But for the sake of settling your fear, if the cameras meter indicator is showing a central position, then you have a neutral (or correct) exposure set for the camera to capture.
    Any variance in this meter reading is what's known as exposure compensation ... as I said earlier, irrespective of how you set it this way.

    With respect to the last sentence again in your quoted text: Now that the camera is always showing a central meter indicator, do the images come out under or overexposed for some reason?
    If you activate/deactivate this safety shift feature, does it then allow you to rotate this main dial and hence to move the meter indicator off centre?

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    Ausphotography Irregular Warbler's Avatar
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    Okay, I'd suggest that in Av Mode the meter will always show in the centre because that is what your camera is programmed to do - select an appropriate shutter speed for the aperture you choose. It will only vary from that if you choose an aperture it can't match to an appropriate shutter speed.

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    Ausphotography Regular agb's Avatar
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    If his camera is similar to the 7D then it is because if it is in AV, and the main wheel set to control aperture, the main wheel will not move the exposure needle, the quick control wheel will, since it will alter the shutter speed, while the aperture is set at whatever he has set it with the main wheel. Moving the main wheel he will see the shutter speed and the aperture moving in concert to have the shutter speed match the aperture being selected.
    Which is what warbler is saying .
    Last edited by agb; 09-03-2013 at 2:17pm.
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    Yes, the effect of moving the rear wheel in Av is to dial in an EV value. It does that by changing the shutter speed in Av mode. It won't lock the shutter speed, but it will lock in the EV until you change it. Arthur is saying essentially the same thing too.

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    Thankyou gentlemen. All that you say is quite correct.
    I do have a good understanding of the principals of exposure Arthur but at times have difficulty remembering all the settings that this camera is capable of.------------------------------------- Having just re-read your postings again my brain finally switched on and I set the camera to "M" MANUAL and lo and behold the exposure indicator moved to 2.5 stops to the negative side of center when the shutter button is half depressed. (Not underexposed as you pointed out Arthur) Rotate the "MAin Wheel" (as described in the manual) and the indicator needle moves back toward the center.
    My puzzle is solved, thankyou once again guys you have been most helpful and patient.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff Port View Post
    ...... Having just re-read your postings again my brain finally switched on and I set the camera to "M" MANUAL and lo and behold the exposure indicator moved to 2.5 stops to the negative side of center when the shutter button is half depressed. (Not underexposed as you pointed out Arthur) Rotate the "MAin Wheel" (as described in the manual) and the indicator needle moves back toward the center.
    My puzzle is solved, thankyou once again guys you have been most helpful and patient.

    At least you've solved your problem

    But I'm curious to know something: if you rotate this dial that moves the meter indicator 2.5stops negative of centre ... how is this not underexposure.

    If your camera is setup to indicate a neutral exposure at centre, then wouldn't it make sense that if the meter indicator is displaying a negative value that the image will be exposed with negative exposure(ie. dark).

    Maybe I need to brush up on the operation of Canon SLRs! ... luckily I shoot with Nikons!

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    When going back to manual, the camera remembers the last setting used. So compared to the last exposure reading Geoff had used in manual, his new exposure comes up needing adjustment.
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    [QUOTE=arthurking83;1125266]At least you've solved your problem

    But I'm curious to know something: if you rotate this dial that moves the meter indicator 2.5stops negative of centre ... how is this not underexposure.


    Arthur, the way I interpreted (past tense) this was that at face value it is a 2.5 stop underexposure based on neutral being a "correct" exposure but if the lighting conditions require a reduction of 2.5 stops in order to expose the capture accurately then this setting becomes the correct one.

    When I first took delivery of the camera it was set on Manual. For the first 30 or 40 (a guess) shots to get the feel of the unit I left it set on M. With so much to learn I didn't really take much notice of what was going on with the metering system initally. I was producing well exposed photos so my presumption was that centering the needle to the neutral position produced correct exposure. After my first test shots I moved to AV and TV depending on circumstance and have not used manual since.
    Yesterday at a model aircraft club day I investigated the M setting again. In manual mode either the desired shutter speed or aperture are set manually. When the shutter is half depressed the system adjusts the needle on the exposure level indicator giving a visual display of how many stops the exposure differs from a neutral reading,(what ever that is?). I made an exposure. I then adjusted the " main wheel" to bring the needle back to neutral and still managed a well exposed shot, albeit different from the first because the shutter speed or aperture changed to suit.
    This indicator is also used for Auto exposure bracketing and great in AV when you need to reduce or increase exposure levels.
    I hope I've given a satisfactory explaination to satisfy your curiosity. Not really all that flash at explaining things.

    I don't know whether you're lucky you use Nikon gear or not, its just a matter of personal preference I would think . When I decided to return to photography I just couldn't decide between Canon or Nikon, they seemed so similar to a technically uneducated self. My decision was based on looking at which system the majority of photographers seemed to be using. I have thought of purchasing an entry level Nikon but that would mean an additional set of lenses and that would be cost prohibitive.
    Any way, no matter what I use if I don't have the talent to use it effectively it matters not what brand it is and sometimes when I view the captures others present on the forums I wonder.
    Last edited by Geoff Port; 11-03-2013 at 9:11am.

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    Just another thought if you have your camera set to allow live view you can not adjust the stop in av/tv however it would appear this is not the issue

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    ^
    Well yeah you can. It even goes brighter and darker on the screen as I "adjust the stop in av/tv".

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