A Sunnier Day for the HX400V

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Stephen McDonald
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A Sunnier Day for the HX400V
8 months ago

Some of the scenes below have been shown recently, but the light was much better today and they came out looking improved. All except the mushrooms, were shot with minus .7 EV. I'm finding that in sunlight and with ISO 100, I need to drop the EV down two clicks. What we really need is a finer EV adjustment of 1/6-stop, rather than the 1/3-stop that all these cameras seem to have.

I was only about 3.5 feet from the mushrooms and zoomed-in to a 397mm equivalent and when I half-pressed the shutter, they came into focus. Those who struggled with closeups using the HX100V/HX200V/HX300, will appreciate this improvement. As it is now, the ISO 80 option seems to make setting the other adjustments more difficult and I may not use it much.

Now the most important things I learned today, were about video shooting. Sure, you can manually adjust the shutter, aperture and exposure-metering for video with this model. But unless your subject is stationary and predictable, there can be problems. All the things you adjust, will be locked, until you adjust them again. If the subject moves through changing light conditions, the camera will be unable to compensate automatically. For action subjects, staying in P mode for video is the best solution.

When you change the Mode Dial to Video, a menu page comes up and gives you a choice of P, A, S, or M, as it does for all the modes. Choose what you want and then click the center button for OK. If it's already there, just click OK. I tried setting the video in Shutter Priority, to 125th-sec and in bright sunlight, the other auto-functions did not adequately lower the exposure.

It was a complete bust trying to shoot moving subjects in sunlight, with the shutter locked. Trying to put the shutter at 125 for flying birds is going to be a real chore, while needing to get everything else just right. Will practice in doing this result in improvement? I'm not too optimistic that the shutter-control is going to be very useful for fast-moving subjects.

Another big discovery in video, is that the exposure-metering zone can be adjusted-----and may need to have this done. If you set the Metering in P mode for photos, it will carry-over to video. So will the EV and ISO settings.

Today, when I shot a new and improved traffic video (linked below), I was getting a darkening effect in exposure, whenever a white vehicle came by, when I had Metering set to Center. When I widened the zone to Multi-metering, there was only minimal disruption. Near the end, a large white pickup turned close to me and there was minor darkening, but other white vehicles farther away, didn't have much effect.

I generally use Center Metering for photos and this will make it necessary to often do more busy work, when changing to and from video mode. See if you can find any information about points like this in the manual.

https://vimeo.com/91382797

https://vimeo.com/91469997

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V
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