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On the top of your camera is a dial which lets you choose a shooting mode. The shooting mode that you choose determines what decisions the camera will make and what decisions will be left up to you. Sometimes having the camera make lots of decision is a better way to go because it allows you to shoot more quickly while at other times you'll want control over some decisions to ensure that you get the type of shot that you want. You change modes simply by turning this mode dial. If you've been working through this course in order we've already changed modes a couple of times while we were looking at menus. Let's go over exactly what's on the mode dial here.
First there is Auto mode and I know what mode I'm in because the thing on the dial here lines up with that little white line right there. So the green box with an A and it is Intelligent Auto mode. We will be talking about all these modes in more detail later. P is Program mode which does a little bit less than Auto mode. TV stands for Time Value, although most people refer to this as Shutter Priority mode. This gives you a little more manual control. AV is Aperture Value. We will be referring to that as Aperture Priority mode as most people do.
M is full Manual mode. It gives you the maximum amount of manual control and actually you probably won't be spending a lot of time there and we will explain why when we get more into these different manual modes. A-Dep is a special mode for trying to ensure that you can get the deepest depth of field possible. That is to have as much in your image in focus as possible. This is something that you might use if you're landscape shooter. So this is one half of the mode dial where in we're increasingly getting more manual control as we go with the exception of A-Dep.
The other half brings us a different kind of approach. First there is this mode which is a little flash icon with a line through it. This is basically Auto mode, but without allowing any flash to happen. Then we've got Creative Auto mode which gives you a little bit more control than normal Auto mode with an interface that's very easy to use. Then we get into Scene modes. Each of these is a Scene mode and we're going to be discussing these in detail. Then finally the little video camera is Movie mode. That's for shooting using the camera's HD video features.
Now if the camera is active that is if I've got controls up here on my screen, my camera was powered on. It has dozed off, which is why the screen went black. I just half-press the Shutter button and all the stuff came up. When it's active and I change modes it shows me this little mode change animation, and tells me a little hint about what that mode can do. So here I can see that Shutter Priority lets me adjust shutter speed to make moving object looks still or capture more motion blur. So that's a nice little hint that will remind you what that particular mode does and that stays up for a while.
That little screen there is interruptible as soon as I half-press the Shutter button it goes away. So you don't have to wait for this stuff to go away before you can start shooting. In fact, if you find this to be annoying you can turn it off. I am going to go into the menu here and look for something called Feature guide which is right here. By default, it's enabled. I can disable it, and it will hide that feature. Now when I change modes nothing happens. It just goes to that mode. Feature guide also disables a couple of other hints that are scattered around the camera and because I want us to see those as we go long I'm going to turn my Feature guide back on.
As you use the camera you may decide that you don't want those extra little hints to appear on screen. In Auto mode the camera will choose all exposure settingS, shutter speed, aperture, ISO as well as to the white balance and whether or not to fire the flash. If it thinks you need the flash then it will automatically pop it up when you half-press the Shutter button to meter. In Auto mode you won't have access to program shift, exposure compensation, or many of the other controls that we will talk about later, but you will be able to select the file format that you want to shoot in.
Auto mode basically gives you a snapshot camera albeit a very good one. While you may think that Auto mode is inherently a compromise, the fact is that the auto features on your camera are very good and will probably make the right choice 80% to 90% of the time. When and how to use it will become apparent as you learn more about exposure and about the camera's other shooting modes.
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