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02-29-2008, 09:21 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattdm Quote
Scene modes could be learning tools, but I've never seen a camera that implements them that way. They change all sorts of things (including tone curves, sharpening, contrast, and saturation, maybe the metering, etc., etc.) and there's no way -- let alone a good way to learn from -- to find out what, exactly, they do.

For example, can you tell me what the landscape and portrait modes on the K100D do?

EDIT: I just noticed in the other thread where you suggest using the buried-in-the-menu SCN modes for learning. So let me up the ante: what does the pets mode do?
I can't recall but I think the manual specifies what each mode does. As far as I know, landscape mode sets a small aperture and ups the sharpness setting. Portrait mode is set to reproduce good skin tones (as is the "kids" SCN mode). The pet mode sets the camera to AF-C, increases sharpness and uses a high shutter speed. I don't think any of the modes affect metering, althought it would be useful if it switched to central weighted when on the "action" modes. The only tone curves adjustment it can do is choose between bright/natural.

Ok, I don't know exactly what each mode does, but I have a good idea and find some of them very useful, mainly the Moving Object mode and the Night Scene Portrait. As I said before it's just hi-speed priority and slow flash sync. Think of the modes as saved presets, like the User modes on the K10.

It's much faster to rotate the dial to sports mode, for example, to get AF-C and a high shutter speed, than to go into Av and navigate the menu to change the setting. If it alters brightness/sharpness settings you can shoot RAW and change everything later anyway.

QuoteQuote:
You only learn from them if you go back afterwords, analyze the EXIF data from each shot, and start making an analytical analysis of how the camera performed in each mode.
You can see focus mode, aperture and shutter speed changing as you set different modes, there's no mystery.

I'm sounding like the biggest fan of scene modes. I don't use them very often, but find it very annoying when someone dismisses some feature because they don't understand it. Specially if they are not polite when doing it.

02-29-2008, 09:44 AM   #32
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It is possible to use Scene modes as a learning tool, if you turn on an appropriate scene and observe the camera's behaviour - using it like a live-tutor.

E.g. the Kids mode sets a high shutter speed and turns on AF-C, which is an appropriate technique for shooting toddlers, Snow and Surf mode adds a +E/V compared to the standard metering to prevent underexposing the subject in bright backlit situations. Its not so simple though, some of what a Scene mode does is rather like a black-box - you can't see what settings in the camera have been changed.

You could also learn the same knowledge in more depth and detail through studying a good photography book.

The negative impact of Scene modes - and I was guilty of this as a newbie once - is that many inexperienced users select them to utilise their dSLR as a glorified P&S.

In my case, I soon realised that while I was able to take decent photographs using the Scene modes, my learning process had not progressed at all. So I stopped using Scene modes..and started learning how to use the camera.
02-29-2008, 10:09 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by ricardobeat Quote
I can't recall but I think the manual specifies what each mode does.
Oh, but it doesn't. Not even as specifically as you've described here.

QuoteQuote:
As far as I know, landscape mode sets a small aperture and ups the sharpness setting. Portrait mode is set to reproduce good skin tones (as is the "kids" SCN mode). The pet mode sets the camera to AF-C, increases sharpness and uses a high shutter speed. I don't think any of the modes affect metering, althought it would be useful if it switched to central weighted when on the "action" modes.

Great example. Because I bet landscape increases saturation, but I'd be surprised if it increases sharpness. Snow mode almost certainly affects metering. Pet mode might too, if your dog is black. But the point is, not only do we not really know, it's not easy to find out -- not without already knowing what's going on, which makes it of very dubious value as a learning too.


QuoteQuote:
The only tone curves adjustment it can do is choose between bright/natural.
Are you sure there aren't other, secret tone curves it might apply? Probably not, but what about with the K200D?

QuoteQuote:
Ok, I don't know exactly what each mode does, but I have a good idea and find some of them very useful, mainly the Moving Object mode and the Night Scene Portrait. As I said before it's just hi-speed priority and slow flash sync. Think of the modes as saved presets, like the User modes on the K10.
But that's very different from suggesting them as learning tools. And wouldn't it be a LOT more useful to have more user modes?
02-29-2008, 10:15 AM   #34
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regarding scene modes as a learning tool and what each does, I have a question, and forgive me if this is over simplified, because my *istD and K10D don't have them, but for those who have a camera with these modes, has anyone thought to look at the exif data?

does it just show pet mode, or does it show the actual contrast settings etc?

but the problem again is, how much time do you want to spend picking apart the actual functions of the camera and then try to develop your own rules about photography.

I am willing to bet it is much faster and much more efficient to read a good book on techniques, and just get on with taking pictures.

As I said earlier They can reach a minimum level of proficiency and will stay there for ever due to lack of interest in the subject.


02-29-2008, 10:23 AM   #35
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Sorry

QuoteOriginally posted by ricardobeat Quote
I'm sounding like the biggest fan of scene modes. I don't use them very often, but find it very annoying when someone dismisses some feature because they don't understand it. Specially if they are not polite when doing it.
This, I think, is directed at me. I apologize if I gave offense or was impolite. Anyone familiar with my last thousand posts in this or any other forum knows that I always (well, almost always) make an effort to be polite. Anyway, I apologize to Ricardo or anyone else who thinks that scene modes are a valuable tool--not for disagreeing, but for putting my view in a way that seemed to close off the possibility of further discussion. NOT my intent.

Will
02-29-2008, 11:13 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
regarding scene modes as a learning tool and what each does, I have a question, and forgive me if this is over simplified, because my *istD and K10D don't have them, but for those who have a camera with these modes, has anyone thought to look at the exif data?

does it just show pet mode, or does it show the actual contrast settings etc?
I would have to double check on my K100D, but I think it gives you the actual data. An example would be the "action" setting, it will give yout the camera selected shutter speed and aperture...
02-29-2008, 04:13 PM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by ukbluetooth Quote
I have just returned from a holiday (vacation) in Egypt (many hundreds of shots with my K10D, fantastic fun).

I was lucky enough to be in the Sahara desert at the time of the lunar eclipse. What a sky, I have never seen the like of.

Amongst the party was a very attractive obviously rich young lady with a very expensive looking Canon and huge glass. Not sure what - didn't like to stare too hard for obvious reasons.

The point is she was taking many many pictures of this amazing eclipsing moon ....... using flash !!

Say no more.
That cracks me up. ROTFLMAO!!! The flash fired because the lens cap was on....
02-29-2008, 07:32 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by ukbluetooth Quote
Amongst the party was a very attractive obviously rich young lady with a very expensive looking Canon and huge glass. Not sure what - didn't like to stare too hard for obvious reasons.

The point is she was taking many many pictures of this amazing eclipsing moon ....... using flash !!
QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
As I said earlier They can reach a minimum level of proficiency and will stay there for ever due to lack of interest in the subject.
This is completely irrelevant. For the OP of this thread, yes, it's a valid opinion that scene modes won't do much for him and the K10D is a better option (althought harder to master) for learning.

But since WHEN buying an SLR is a statement "I want to learn photography"? Why can't someone use it as a "glorified P&S"? They will no doubt have the benefits of greater image quality, and seldom will get worse results than with the compact. The point is, it's their money, not yours. They can do whatever they want. No one rides a Ferrari because he needs it.

Most people have no clue about how to or when use a flash. It's just always on auto, and that lady would still be firing shots at the moon with the flash on with the P&S! Yes, they know nothing about photography, and might not want to know... it's just another toy. I bet you don't know all the innards of your computer or operating system, or your car engine, but does that give someone else the right to call you stupid and be mad at you? I don't think so.

I think we should be jealous of the ones who can take great pictures with so-so equipment, not those who can buy the best and don't use it properly.

QuoteQuote:
This, I think, is directed at me. I apologize if I gave offense or was impolite. Anyone familiar with my last thousand posts in this or any other forum knows that I always (well, almost always) make an effort to be polite. Anyway, I apologize to Ricardo or anyone else who thinks that scene modes are a valuable tool--not for disagreeing, but for putting my view in a way that seemed to close off the possibility of further discussion. NOT my intent.

Will
I understand your feelings on that, and also appreciate your humility. But you don't need to apologize to me, I didn't take any offense :]

I was just speaking for those who could had.


Last edited by ricardobeat; 03-01-2008 at 11:01 AM.
02-29-2008, 08:56 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by ricardobeat Quote
This is completely irrelevant. For the OP of this thread, yes, it's a valid opinion that scene modes won't do much for him and the K10D is a better option (althought harder to master) for learning.

But since WHEN buying an SLR is a statement "I want to learn photography"? Why can't someone use it as a "glorified P&S"? They will no doubt have the benefits of greater image quality, and seldom will get worse results than with the compact. The point is, it's their money, not yours. They can do whatever they want. No one rides a Ferrari because he needs it.

Most people have no clue about how to or when use a flash. It's just always on auto, and that lady would still be firing shots at the moon with the flash on with the P&S! Yes, they know nothing about photography, and might not want to know... it's just another toy. I bet you don't know all the innards of your computer or operating system, or your car engine, but does that give someone else the right to call you stupid and be mad at you? I don't think so.

I think we should be jealous of the ones who can take great pictures with so-so equipment, not those who can buy the best and don't use it properly.



I understand your feelings on that, and also appreciate your humility. But you don't need to apologize to me, I didn't take any offense :]

I was just speaking for those who could had.
Not to drag out this discussion too long, there are a couple of points to clarify here.

first of all, the debate raging here is that screen modes are a learning tool. The answer really is no, without a basic knowledge of the principles, they won't because they won't even have the technical background to understand what they see

second, I don't disagree that many people today are getting SLRs because of the belief that they will get better pictures than a P&S, and I don't disagree, with scene modes they will.

Third, I never said they should not be allowed to buy the camera they can do what ever they want, as you say.

Through out the thread, I continually reference back to the question from the OP, the fact is, the modes will not in the long term do anthing for him.
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