How to Understand the Basic Anatomy of Your Nikon SLR Camera
Understanding basic camera anatomy
Before we go any further we need to get some basic terminology out of the way. Now a lot of what I am going to explain here may seem pretty cut and dry, but it's important that we're all on the same page when talking about specific parts of the camera. Taking it up from the top, we have the shutter button, which obviously you'll be using a lot. We have a power switch, which also let's you turn on a light behind your LCD display here. This shows you critical status information. Exposure compensation, metering mode selection buttons, hot shoe for attaching an external flash, a mode dial over here, and finally mounts for attaching the camera strap.
Moving around to the back, we have the main dial which we'll use for changing parameters on a number of controls. The exposure lock button. Beneath that the Live view switch which in the middle of it has a button for starting movie shooting. Below that I have a navigation pad with an OK button in the middle. You'll use that for menu navigation. Directly beneath that I have a lock switch that locks certain controls. And info button which brings up a very handy information display on my nice big LCD screen here. Above the LCD of course I have the viewfinder with the diopter control.
Next to that I have a little trashcan button. This is the delete button that I use for deleting images when I am in playback mode, which I can get to by pressing the playback button. Beneath that I have four buttons. A menu button which takes him into the camera's menuing system. These three buttons do different things depending on whether I'm in shooting or playback mode. If I'm shooting, then these buttons do what the label above the button says. So in that case this button is a white balance button, this button changes the ISO and this button changes quality-- that is the format I'm shooting in and the size of the image.
If I'm in playback mode then these buttons do what's on the front of the button, the label that's on the front. So this button becomes a help button and a button for protecting images. This button becomes a zoom out button when I'm in playback mode and this button becomes zoom in. Finally, around the mode dial is another ring that rotates. This is for changing the release mode of the camera. That's for going from shooting individual images to bursts of images, to using self timer and other functions. Moving around to the side of the camera, I've got port covers here that I can open up to reveal ports inside that can be a few different things.
This is A/V OUT for going to one type of video. This is HDMI out for going to a different type of video monitor. And this is an A/V port for attaching my computer to my camera for a transfer of images, as we'll see later. Close that up. I sometimes kind of mash these in to get them to stay. Down below I have a port cover for attaching an external microphone. This can be very handy for shooting video and attaching a GPS attachment. That's a standalone device that will tag your images with the location where you were when you shot them.
Moving around to the front of the camera, I've got a few critical controls here. A button for attaching and removing the lens. Above that I have the flash button. This pops up, the pop-up flash that's built into the top of the camera. It also lets me control flash exposure compensation. Below that I have a button for controlling auto bracketing. And down at the very bottom here I have an Auto Focus and Manual switch that has to do with switching the camera into a manual focus mode. On the front of this switch is a button that allows me to change certain auto focus features.
Continuing on to the other side of the camera, I have here in auto focus assist lamp that's used for focusing in low light conditions. The camera will control that automatically. And there's a function button here that I can program to do different things. Finally I have my sub-command dial. This is for changing certain parameters that I don't control with the dial that's on the back. And then down below, I have my depth of field preview button that allows me to see depth of field when I'm trying to figure out exactly what I want in focus in my image.
And finally, over here on the side of the camera, I have my media card slot. One of the really nice features of this camera is that I have two media card slots. I can put in two secure digital cards and we'll talk about that in detail in later movies.
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