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Old Mar 18, 2010, 12:23 PM   #1
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Default Using Your Camera's Scene Modes

The Scene Modes that are included on your camera are very valuable short cuts. Scene Modes can automatically adjust as many as 5 different menu items for you.

That saves you the need to figure out what you need, and then to go into the camera's menu and set each one individually. Scene Modes do a very good job.

Here is a Sunset Scene Mode used on a Panasonic ZR1.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 12:52 PM   #2
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That's nice - makes me want to go to the beach again.
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 1:54 PM   #3
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Thanks, Clint-

The water is still a bit cold though.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 2:01 PM   #4
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Default Scene modes are scary...

Hi Sarah

While a couple of the more obvious scene modes seem like a good idea, eg Sunset, High Sensitivity, Starry Sky, I still mainly avoid the scene modes, and would like to understand more about them. My main concerns are:
  • There is no way to know what parameters are being adjusted. Particularly as high ISO values are used in many scene modes, I find myself always going into the menus to try and establish what functions are changed or disabled. If Panasonic included a table showing what the processor was actually doing to create each scene mode, I would find that comforting
  • Do some or any scene modes adjust parameters more than the available range you can set in P?
  • Some scene modes, Sports in particular, function worse than using P.
  • The in-camera explanations are badly worded and sometimes don't make much sense. It would help if they got a skilled English speaker to re-write them.
  • There are way too many scene modes, with many that overlap. Examples:
  • Use Party or Indoor Portrait? At a party, muck around changing between these modes? (potentially missing moments)
  • Taking a photo of a vista eg mountain range. Use Scenery-Normal or Scenery-Nature mode? Or iA?
  • Use iA or P (with program shift) or Portrait-Normal or Portrait Soft Skin or Portrait Outdoor or Portrait-Creative. So that's 6 different choices. But wait, I'm at the beach!
I'm not trying to be difficult or even cynical, but from my TZ1, Fz18, FS7 and now FZ35 (add a couple of non-panny's into the mix), I have found that scene modes are often confusing and unreliable. But with many people reporting good results, I'm wondering if it's me??

eg A while back my cousin came up from the Gold Coast for me to meet his new girlfriend and have lunch. It was a beautiful day in a cafe at the riverfront. They posed arm-in-arm for some photos, it was a wonderful moment and very picturesque. At the time my FZ18 was only a few weeks old. I did eventually get the shot, but they (and I) wondered why instead of just pointing and shooting, I was mucking around in menus and making excuses while they waited. Precisely cause I was stressing over which mode to use, whether to use fill-flash etc, because I didn't want to miss the shot or this special memory.

I am trying to keep an open mind, and value your experience in helping me understand their benefits better.

Sorry for the long post
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 2:05 PM   #5
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I did eventually get the shot of my cousin and his girlfriend,, is it OK to your eyes?

Last edited by chillgreg; Mar 28, 2010 at 2:15 PM.
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 2:47 PM   #6
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I like his shirt. It has a lot of symbolic meaning in the slogan.
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 3:17 PM   #7
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Looks pretty good to me (but what do I know ). Maybe could have used a little fill flash to help with the shadows?

BTW, I love your changing avatars.
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 4:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chillgreg View Post
I did eventually get the shot of my cousin and his girlfriend,, is it OK to your eyes?
I really like the picture. For some reason, the clouds in the background make the scene very happy. Good job, Greg!
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 4:39 PM   #9
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Im aware of Zildjian for their drum components (in particular symbols). Used to play in bands (not drums), but one of my old drummers lives here in town & he's a Zildjian user (sports a Zildjian bumper sticker) & his drum set uses all Zildjians.

I agree about the scene modes. One of the things that happens is certain things are preset & other things are disabled when using them & it is too difficult to memorize the combinations. As a result, there are only a few that I use particularly when time is of essence. An example would be quick switch to sports mode when dealing with any kind of children as they all seem to be moving about (usually faster than Western fence lizards) all the time. I might also use scenery, fireworks or high sensitivity modes rarely, but that's about it.
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Old Mar 18, 2010, 4:49 PM   #10
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I think that sdromel hit the key points regarding Scene Modes-

Scene Modes are there to help folks who face the confusion that Greg/AU described so well in his post. Scene Modes are a convenience, a way to make thing much easier for somebody who is new to a camera.

Sarah Joyce
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