Understanding Your DSLR Camera Technically


In this video, I’ll show and explain some
basic concepts of photography and DSLR cameras. The lens is probably the most important piece
of equipment you’ll be using. The quality of glass is largely the difference between
your phone and a dedicated camera when taking a picture or video. Lenses are usually manufacturer-specific,
so Canon lenses fit on Canon bodies and Nikon lenses fit on Nikon bodies. But some third
party manufacturers, such as Sigma, will make lenses for the big name brands. The distance
measurement on your lens, in millimeters, is the focal length, or the zoom rating, of
that lens. This basically means that the lower the number is, the wider your image is, or
how close you can get to the subject to have it still fit in the frame. Low focal lengths
are wide angle lenses and large numbers are zoom or telephoto lenses. When there is just
one focal length, the lens doesn’t zoom and is called a prime lens. When it has a
range of numbers, it’s a zoom lens. Lenses can also have a switch for autofocus. It can
either be on manual focus or autofocus. Some will also include an image stabilization in
the lens itself, which detects movement in the lens and mechanically realigns to stabilize
the image a bit. You can also try to fix unstable footage in a video editing program or even
let YouTube try to fix it with their auto-enhance feature. Your camera has three main ways to
affect the final image by altering the amount of light that’s let into the camera. The
first of which is the aperture. This is the ratio of one-to-the largest the aperture will
open. If it’s a zoom lens, it will have a span because when it’s zoomed in, there
is less light that can make it through the lens. For example, this lens is 4-5.6, so
its widest aperture is 4 when zoomed out all the way, and 5.6 when zoomed in. The camera’s
aperture is a hole that lets in light. The wider it’s open, the more light that’s
let in. The aperture also affects depth of field. A low aperture, or f-stop, is wide
open because it’s actually a fraction over one and it creates a shallow depth of field
because it lets in more light. A higher f-stop number closes the aperture to not let in as
much light, but more things will be in focus. It’s very comparable to our eyes. The reason
a smaller aperture allows for more to be in focus is because it’s limiting the different
angles the light is coming from. Check out this minutephysic’s video explaining the
process. If your eye had no lens, light from a single source would hit your retina in lots
of places and result in a smeared out mess, which is exactly what happens when I take
the lens off of my camera. A lens focuses that spread out light, corralling it into
a crisp image. The shutter affects the amount of light and blur in your image. A good rule
of thumb is to keep your shutter speed around the same number as the focal length of the
lens to avoid blur, when handheld. Otherwise, just use a tripod if you need to slow the
shutter speed. Another rule of thumb, when working with video, is to make your shutter
speed double the frame rate. So, if you’re shooting 30 frames per second, you might want
to try 1/60 of a second for your shutter speed. The ISO affects the amount of light and grain
or noise an image has. A higher ISO shows more noise in the image, but lets in more
light. Some cameras handle high ISOs better than others. You can also manually change
the color temperature by changing the white balance. It’s measured in Kelvin, which
is a unit of temperature that ranges greatly. Until you use it a lot, you might want to
rely on the white balance presets and possibly even auto white balance, but if you’re shooting
video, the white balance might change in the middle of recording. In photography, sometimes
people say they shoot RAW. This is a style setting that captures more accurate and dynamic
colors than other picture styles, but the files that are created are huge. Shooting
in RAW gives you more dynamic range in your image, which means that there is more detail
in dark and bright areas of your image. It also allows for more work to be done in post
production. If you shoot too dark, for example, you can adjust it in Photoshop without losing
much quality. But if that image were shot as a jpeg, which is compressed, the color
range is much less and has little area for correction. While most consumer DSLR’s today
don’t shoot RAW video, they do take RAW photos. They don’t shoot RAW video because
the processing power and storage would be too high. The next best thing to shooting
RAW video is shooting flat images. The reasoning behind this is that if your image isn’t
over-contrasted by the style profiles, then you can preserve more data in dynamic range.
To achieve this effect, you can lessen the amount of adjustments the camera is doing.
There is a pretty good preset that I’ll link to that’s free called Cinestyle, which
flattens the video as much as it can. Because it flattens it, you’ll need to edit it later
on to add color and contrast. The frame rate affects the look of your video. For example,
when The Hobbit was shown in 48 frames per second, people commented that it looked home
videoy or that it just looked off because most movies were previously shot in 24 frames
per second and most home video cameras have a slightly higher frame rate. Unless you have
a specific look you’re trying to get, remember to keep your frame rate half what your shutter
is. So, if you’re shooting 30 frames per second, you might want to make the shutter speed 1/60th.
Hopefully this video was a good introduction to your DSLR camera or you’ve got something
out of it and if you’ve got a question about your camera or anything related to it, go
ahead and leave a comment below the video and I’ll try to get back to you as soon
as I can. Thanks for watching.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *