How can a camera help you to take better pictures?
Digital SLR cameras have come on in leaps and bounds, the technology packed in to the latest cameras like the EOS 650D is nothing short of amazing. [Amazon]
Digital SLR cameras, just like film cameras, are not able to record the same range of brightness as the human eye can see. For new photographers this is one of the top things to learn and then make use of to improve their pictures. You need to prioritise which elements in the frame are to be rendered correctly and which are ok to blow out or fall in to shadow. This limitation is termed the dynamic range.
“Better” range for your pictures
In recent times a technique scarily titled High Dynamic Range (HDR) imaging has become more popular. Basically this involves the taking of several frames of the scene at different exposures then combining them together in software to make an image with apparently greater dynamic range than the camera could capture. Execute the technique well and it can look quite good, do it badly, or overdo it, well that’s where you might call it art.
EOS 650D puts increased dynamic range right at your fingertips
The EOS 650D adds Handheld Night Scene and HDR Backlight Control to the scene modes on the camera mode dial. Handheld Night Scene icon is at the 9 o’clock position on the mode dial above and the HDR Backlight Control mode is at the 8 o’clock position.
Handheld Night Scene mode
Taking advantage of the increased 5fps frame rate, the camera captures four shots at a shutter speed fast enough to prevent camera shake. The four shots are then combined in-camera to create a single well-exposed shot with minimal blur in low light conditions, lessening the need to use a tripod. This will make sure that more photographers get better pictures in low light conditions, giving them confidence to use the camera more often.
HDR Backlight Control mode
This is a typical HDR type mode, the camera captures three shots in continuous shooting mode, again using the faster frame rate. One shot is under exposed, one is at the metered exposure and one is overexposed. Then the camera analyses the frames to create a composite image with greater dynamic range than would be possible with a single shot.
THe EOS 5D Mark III also has a HDR mode, but it’s more hidden in the depths of the cameras menus, here’s a simple example of an HDR scene that the camera captured and processed to give the impression of wider dynamic range.
It’s really great to see this kind of modes coming to the EOS 650D since it will help more people get better pictures in difficult photographic situations. The key question is how will someone know if it’s the right time to use these modes? For that I suggest a short session of training or consultancy with EOS Network.