Setting shutter speed priority in digital cameras

  bobbyalec 17:27 03 Jun 2005

Hi, I am trying to select a new digital camera from the dozens of choices available, one with aperture/shutter speed priorities being required.

If it's not a silly question, what is the order of events when doing this - eg do you turn the menu wheel to manual and select that, then do you get a choice of, say, shutter speeds and select the one for, say, 1/2000 sec and is that it ready for taking a picture of, say, a vehicle coming towards you at some speed? Hope I'm not being too thick!

Thanks in advance to any advice.


  Indigo 1 17:33 03 Jun 2005

Yes, is the answer.

If you choose sgutter priority then the camera will set the aperture and if you decide to choose aperture priority then the camera sets the s/s.

I use the Canon Powershot A75 which also has completely manual settings so I can change both and select a differnt flash setting.

  De Marcus 17:36 03 Jun 2005


Each digital camera is different though, if your a novice to digital photography but want to take high speed shots you're better off with a camera that has pre-set modes, such as sports, portrait, night, landscape, etc. Most compacts offer these and have a little head room for increasing or decreasing the shutter speed, they also mostly have a manual mode whereby you can tinker to your hearts delight.

  Pineman100 17:41 03 Jun 2005

Further to what Indigo 1 has said, remember that if you manually set your shutter to a very fast speed, the camera is likely to open up the aperture very wide. This will give a shallow depth of field to your focussing. So - to use your lorry analogy - the fast shutter speed that you use to "freeze" its motion could end up causing it to be out of focus, particularly if your camera has a significant delay between locking the focus and opening the shutter (which some digital cameras do have).
As with so many things in photography, it ends up with a compromise!

  961 18:04 03 Jun 2005

The Canon powershot camera I have has a high speed mode for sports and other fast moving objects. As suggested this produces a high shutter speed to freeze motion

However, as a former SLR user I have to say that Pineman 100 is on the mark when he refers to the basic delay with all digital cameras between the button being pressed and the shot being taken. You can eliminate some of this by pressing the button halfway to achieve the focussing but even then it is a compromise.

If much of your shots are going to be of high speed stuff then this can be a downside to digital photography compared to SLR

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