Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III
Illustration by

Activating Live View


Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III

with Ben Long

Video: Activating Live View

As we've seen, one of the great advantages of an SLR is that you have a viewfinder that looks through the same lens that exposes the sensor. However, there are times when looking through that viewfinder is actually a hassle. Maybe the camera is up on a tripod, in a difficult to see position, or perhaps you're shooting a portrait, and you would prefer to look directly in your subject's eyes, rather than through the viewfinder. For those situations, live view might be a preferable way to work. In live view, the camera's LCD screen becomes a viewfinder, just like on a point-and-shoot camera, or on the camera on a cell phone.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 10m 29s
    1. Welcome
      2m 16s
    2. What is an SLR?
      5m 28s
    3. A note for 5D Mark II users
    4. Using this course
      1m 55s
  2. 35m 44s
    1. Exploring basic camera anatomy
      5m 28s
    2. Attaching a lens to your camera
      4m 3s
    3. Examining batteries and media cards
      8m 35s
    4. Powering up
      1m 49s
    5. Exploring the menu system
      2m 53s
    6. Clearing all settings
      2m 5s
    7. Setting the date and time
      1m 55s
    8. Setting the language
      1m 42s
    9. Formatting the media card
      3m 4s
    10. Holding the camera
      4m 10s
  3. 25m 6s
    1. Setting Scene Intelligent Auto mode
      1m 28s
    2. Exploring the viewfinder display
      5m 51s
    3. Touring the LCD screen and the status display
      2m 22s
    4. Exploring the top-mounted control buttons
      1m 42s
    5. Autofocus basics
      5m 7s
    6. Metering basics
      1m 42s
    7. Reviewing images
      2m 59s
    8. Working with image playback
      3m 55s
  4. 39m 32s
    1. Exploring Program mode
    2. Working with exposure compensation
      5m 2s
    3. Using the lock switch
      1m 21s
    4. Revisiting metering
      1m 43s
    5. Changing the ISO
      2m 14s
    6. Looking at ISO speed settings
      4m 36s
    7. Exploring long exposure noise reduction
      2m 53s
    8. Exploring high ISO noise reduction
      1m 40s
    9. Using program shift
      2m 11s
    10. Exploring image format and size
      3m 59s
    11. Using the Info button
      2m 4s
    12. Examining level and grid display
      3m 45s
    13. Using the Quick Control screen
      1m 35s
    14. Setting the color space
      1m 25s
    15. Configuring multiple media cards
      3m 24s
    16. Using the feature guide
  5. 23m 15s
    1. Exploring focus modes
      2m 25s
    2. Selecting autofocus areas
      3m 54s
    3. Exploring other autofocus options
      3m 44s
    4. Customizing servo auto focus
      4m 49s
    5. Exploring autofocus custom functions
      4m 50s
    6. Using manual focus
      3m 33s
  6. 10m 31s
    1. Using auto white balance
      1m 48s
    2. Exploring white balance presets
      3m 7s
    3. Using manual white balance
      5m 36s
  7. 10m 47s
    1. Exploring Drive mode
      4m 52s
    2. Using the self-timer
      3m 38s
    3. Using remote controls
      2m 17s
  8. 52m 26s
    1. Exploring metering modes
      3m 26s
    2. Using exposure lock
      1m 22s
    3. Working with focus points and metering
      3m 47s
    4. Exploring Aperture Priority mode
      3m 0s
    5. Using the depth of field preview button
      2m 40s
    6. Using Shutter Priority mode
      3m 26s
    7. Using Manual mode
      3m 27s
    8. Using auto exposure bracketing
      6m 3s
    9. Exploring Bulb mode
      2m 34s
    10. Working with the Auto Lighting Optimizer
      1m 40s
    11. Correcting lens aberration
      2m 46s
    12. Exploring Highlight Tone Priority
      2m 25s
    13. Understanding high-dynamic range (HDR)
      7m 5s
    14. Creating multiple exposures
      6m 25s
    15. Using the mirror lockup feature
      2m 20s
  9. 27m 38s
    1. Modifying LCD brightness
      3m 27s
    2. Rotating images
      2m 36s
    3. Using the playback grid
    4. Enabling AF point display
      1m 18s
    5. Rating images
      3m 4s
    6. Protecting and deleting images
      4m 40s
    7. Using Quick Control during playback
      1m 17s
    8. Exploring file numbering options
      2m 43s
    9. Creating folders
      1m 10s
    10. Changing file names
      3m 12s
    11. Adding copyright information
      3m 29s
  10. 7m 57s
    1. Defining picture styles
      2m 0s
    2. Exploring predefined picture styles
      2m 1s
    3. Adjusting predefined picture styles
      1m 56s
    4. Working with the monochromatic picture style
      2m 0s
  11. 22m 28s
    1. Activating Live View
      7m 16s
    2. Focusing in Live View
      5m 32s
    3. Focus manually in Live View
      1m 25s
    4. Working with aspect ratio
      2m 33s
    5. Exploring other Live View options
      3m 36s
    6. Reviewing the drawbacks to using Live View
      2m 6s
  12. 12m 16s
    1. Shooting video in Auto and Program modes
      6m 39s
    2. Shooting video in Priority or Manual modes
      3m 35s
    3. Exploring movie playback
      2m 2s
  13. 13m 0s
    1. Exploring custom modes
      5m 38s
    2. Using the custom menu
      2m 56s
    3. Exploring custom controls
      4m 26s
  14. 8m 57s
    1. What are custom functions?
    2. Working with exposure level increments
      1m 34s
    3. Bracketing auto cancel
    4. Changing the number of bracketed shots
      1m 5s
    5. Changing ISO speed setting increments
      1m 34s
    6. Exploring the Live View shooting area display
    7. Enabling safety shift
      2m 6s
    8. Clearing all custom functions
  15. 8m 16s
    1. Camera and sensor cleaning
      3m 12s
    2. Using the Battery Info command
      1m 45s
    3. Looking at operating conditions and temperatures
      2m 3s
    4. Getting firmware updates
      1m 16s
  16. 15m 10s
    1. Exploring focus and composition
      5m 31s
    2. Using an exposure strategy
      5m 11s
    3. Controlling exposure through Program mode
      4m 28s
  17. 23s
    1. Goodbye

Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now
please wait ...
Watch the Online Video Course Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III
5h 23m Beginner Nov 08, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, photographer and author Ben Long details the features, controls, and options in the Canon 5D Mark III digital SLR. The course begins with an overview of what a digital SLR is and takes a tour of the basic camera components. Ben then discusses the basic camera operation: changing lenses, navigating the menus, shooting in automatic mode, reviewing and managing photos on the LCD screen, and transferring photos to a computer.

Next, the course introduces more advanced exposure options: program mode, exposure compensation, ISO adjustments, and more. After Ben briefly defines each option, he shows how to adjust it using the camera controls.

Ben also discusses white balance options, advanced metering and autofocus controls, flash, live view, and video shooting. The course ends with a chapter on maintenance, including sensor- and camera-cleaning and care tips.

Topics include:
  • What is a DSLR?
  • Attaching lenses
  • Powering up and down
  • Formatting the media card
  • Holding the camera
  • Shooting in the Auto and Program modes
  • Changing the ISO
  • Controlling autofocus and white balance
  • Using a self-timer
  • Working with the exposure control options
  • Activating Live View
  • Shooting video
5D Mark III
Ben Long

Activating Live View

As we've seen, one of the great advantages of an SLR is that you have a viewfinder that looks through the same lens that exposes the sensor. However, there are times when looking through that viewfinder is actually a hassle. Maybe the camera is up on a tripod, in a difficult to see position, or perhaps you're shooting a portrait, and you would prefer to look directly in your subject's eyes, rather than through the viewfinder. For those situations, live view might be a preferable way to work. In live view, the camera's LCD screen becomes a viewfinder, just like on a point-and-shoot camera, or on the camera on a cell phone.

The camera takes the image that's being captured by the sensor, and puts it immediately up on the screen, so that you can see exactly what it's capturing. To activate live view, you go to this weird looking little control right here. I say it's weird looking, because it's actually two different controls. There is this rocker switch, which goes left and right, which changes me from live view to movie shooting mode, and then in the middle of it is a button. For life view, we want it in the straight up and down position, and to actually activate live view, I just press the Start button. Now, listen carefully as I press this. That was the sound of the mirror in the camera flipping up, and the shutter opening.

So with all of that stuff out of the way of the sensor, light can now get through the lens, back to the sensor, and the camera can create an image here on the screen. By default, I get this status readout here, which is the exact same one that I get in my viewfinder, with a couple of little variations. I will get my shutter speed and aperture over here. I am not seeing a shutter speed right now, because I haven't metered. I have an exposure compensation display. This is the number of shots remaining on the card; an estimated number of shots remaining on the card. Now, this number differs than the number that I see up here.

Here I'm seeing 1999; here I am seeing 6400. I like this number better; it means more storage on my card. Fortunately, this is the accurate number. This display simply can't read out higher than 1999. So I actually do have an estimated 6400 images available on this card. I am currently in Auto ISO mode, and here's my battery meter. As you may have noticed, live view just turned off. This happens if I don't touch the camera for a while to save battery, and to keep the camera from heating up.

We're going to talk more about heat issues in a minute. So I am going to start that up again. I've got other information readouts that I can get here, just by pressing the Info button. So if I press it once, I get this. This shows me my shooting mode; I am currently in Aperture priority, and I've got my drive mode here, which is in single shot mode, white balance, picture style, auto lighting optimizer, which card I am shooting on, my format, and it's showing me that I am in live view mode here; Auto Focus Live view mode. And then down here, I see this badge for exposure simulation.

We're going to talk about that in another movie. So, just some simple status readout there; I still change these things the way that I always would. For example, if I want to change white balance, I press the white balance button on the top of the camera, and now I get a white balance menu here that I can choose from. I am going to stick with Auto white balance. If I press the Info button again from here, I get to a histogram display, where I can see that I have no clipped highlights or shadows; a real testament to the Lynda lighting crew that this set is so well lit. I am going to press the Info button again, and now I get my level.

This works just like it does in the normal shooting mode. One more press of the Info button wipes everything off the screen, giving me a nice clean view for composition. I am going to stick with the default view, showing my exposure parameters. Now, in the middle of the screen, I have a single focus point. I don't get all those multiple focus points that I get when I'm shooting in normal mode; I only get the one. So let's go ahead and try and autofocus here. I am going to shoot just the way that I always would. I am going to half-press the shutter button to focus and meter. So you can see that it's metered, but autofocus is going very slow, and it's giving me a big red box, and it's left me an image that's very blurry.

As I mentioned before, when the mirror flips off the autofocus sensors, which are up here in the pentaprism, go blind. So my normal speedy autofocus doesn't work. Instead, what happens is the onboard computer in the Mark III is reading this image off the sensor, analyzing it, and driving the focus motor in the lens according to what it finds off of its analysis. My problem is, since I've only got the one focus point, and since that focus point is currently sitting on something with very little contrast, the camera is not able to focus. So I can't switch to a different focus point, but what's cool about live view is I can actually just put this focus point wherever I want.

Using the multi-controller, I can juts drive it around here. I am going to put it on that camera right there, half-press my shutter button; Aha! And now I get focus. My image brightened up also, because this is also my metering point. This is what it's basing its metering off of. If I want metering that's different than that, I will need to use exposure compensation, or put it into some manual control, and just take control on my own. I can also put it on this camera over here, any part of that camera, and that, again, is going to change my focus, and my metering.

What's cool about this is I can actually put this anywhere in the frame that I want. I can put it in places where I normally don't have focus spots. So it's actually a pretty versatile focus tool; it's just a little slow, but still very accurate. Earlier, we saw that I was in an exposure simulation mode; we saw a little badge down here. What that means is that the camera is actually trying to simulate the exposure of the final image, which is something that I don't get to see in my normal viewfinder. For example, let's say that I dial in some underexposure in my exposure compensation.

The image is actually getting darker. I can see the changes that have been made to my exposure; it's changed the ISO, because I am in Auto ISO mode, but I am also seeing the overall effect on my image. Conversely, if I go the other way, I see a simulation of what would happen if I dialed in two stops of overexposure. So this is a really nice way of previsualizing my final scene. I also get if, I want it, depth of field preview, just like I would in normal shooting. I don't get it through the exposure simulation; as you can see, my depth of the field is very shallow, but I'm at f/11, so it should be deeper than that.

If I press the depth of field preview button, which is located on the front of the camera right next to the lens, I actually do get a preview of depth of field. There you see that it just sharpened up; the camera in the back got clearer. So I can get a very nice final preview of my image before I shoot; something that I can't do in my normal viewfinder. For the most part, all of the other exposure and shooting controls that you have will be the same in live view as they are when you're shooting normally. Running the LCD screen and the image sensor generates a lot of heat inside your camera.

Because heat is bad for electronic components, and because it makes your image more noisy, your camera will begin to show you warnings as it heats up. First, you will see this white icon; this indicates that image quality might be degraded. As you continue to shoot, that white icon will turn red, and then it will start flashing. Eventually, the camera will just stop shooting altogether, and you will have to shut it down to let it cool off. Now, how quickly that will all happen varies with the ambient temperature that you're shooting in. You can avoid these overheating problems by turning off live view when you're not actively shooting, especially if the weather is hot.

There are currently no FAQs about Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III.

Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any page and choose Site preferences from the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from

Sign up and receive emails about and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.