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Top of camera controls (left)

You'll only find two controls on the left of the camera - the exposure mode dial and the main power (on/off) slider switch. There's not a lot to say here really, everything dials, slides and switches as it should. See below for an explanation of the available modes.

Exposure modes

Position
 
Mode
 
Auto Program Exposure

This is essentially the camera's "point and shoot" mode. When you select this mode various settings return to their defaults (with most defaulting to 'auto'). However unlike other digital cameras in Auto mode they are not locked and can be adjusted.
P

Program Exposure (with shift)

Program exposure mode on the A200 can be shifted, this means that you can select one of a variety of equal exposures by turning the control dial, by default the exposure is shifted by shutter speed (indicated as PS), you can choose to shift by aperture (PA) by changing the 'Control dial set' option in the custom menu.

A

Aperture Priority

In this mode you select the aperture and the camera will calculate the shutter speed for the exposure (depending on metered value; metering mode, ISO). Aperture is displayed on the viewfinder status bar and the LCD monitor (if recording display is enabled), turn the control dial to select different apertures.

S

Shutter Priority

In this mode you select the shutter speed and the camera will calculate the correct aperture for the exposure (depending on metered value; metering mode, ISO). Shutter speed is displayed on the viewfinder status bar and the LCD monitor (if recording display is enabled), turn the control dial to select different shutter speeds.

M

Full Manual Exposure

In this mode you select the aperture and the shutter speed (and additionally Bulb shutter). The front dial controls shutter speed, to change the aperture you have to press the exposure compensation button and turn the dial at the same time. This can be changed in the custom menu though. As you turn the dial the EV scale on the recording display and the viewfinder status line indicates how close the selected exposure is to the metered exposure (+/- 2 EV).

Flash off mode

Suppressed flash mode is a variant of 'Auto' mode but, as the name suggests, one that will not resort to using flash. Useful for situations in which flashes are forbidden.

Scene exposure modes

Most of the settings in any of the scene exposure modes are the same as 'Auto' mode, that is Auto ISO, Multi-Segment metering etc. However there are obviously other parameters which vary with each mode, including the Creative Style mode, metering and white balance. You cannot change the Creative Style mode in any of the scene exposure modes.

Position
 
Mode
 
Portrait

Selects large apertures (small F numbers) to reduce the depth of field and make the portrait subject stand out from the background.
Landscape

Selects small apertures (large F numbers) to enlarge the depth of field and ensure more of the image appears to be sharp and 'in focus'.

Macro

Tends to select faster shutter speeds to avoid shake at high macro magnifications (although does tend to try to maintain an aperture of around F5.6).

Sports

Selects faster shutter speeds to capture moving action, also engages continuous drive mode. Uses Continuous AF and Continuous (burst) drive mode.
Sunset

Selects small apertures (large F numbers) to enlarge the depth of field and sets the white balance to preserve the warm colors.
Night view / portrait

Uses slow shutter speed and exposure / color settings suited to night photography. The difference (between night view and night portrait) is that one is without and the other with the flash (you'll have to disable the flash manually to switch between modes).
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