D800 Live View exposure simulation

Started Apr 9, 2013 | Discussions thread
Per Baekgaard Senior Member • Posts: 1,268
Re: D800 Live View exposure simulation

Julian Vrieslander wrote:

When using LV with A, S, and P exposure modes, the lens aperture remains at max (wide open).

Not mine... I'm on a D800, with the lastest FW, and tested using a 24-70mm f/2.8.

Note that in A, S, and P modes, you can't change lens aperture to judge DOF on the monitor.  The aperture dial and DOF preview button have no effect.

Mine works differently.

[In M mode ... ] the DOF preview button does not work.

I guess it is "always on"

Pressing the OK button just shows or hides the exposure compensation scale.

Well, on mine, it shows the resulting exposure taking into account the current settings when showing, and the scale actually shows the amount of over/underexposure (as you also go on to say next:

The reading on that scale is the difference between your manually set exposure, and what the autoexposure system (including compensation setting) would use. [ ... ]

Corrections and additional tips?

Hm... it appears yours work differently than mine then. I haven't tested this very carefully in all modes as you have done, but my summary of what I have tested is:

  1. When in A or M mode, the aperture changes physically, independent of whether the OK button has been pressed or not.
  2. In S and P mode, the aperture stays whereever it is at when the exposure compensation scale is not showing, but changes physically when the scale is showing.
  3. When the scale is showing, A, P and S mode attempts to show the resulting shot (with the usual caveats -- but also with limitations when you reach the borders of the physical apertures). It includes effects of exposure compensation you have dialed in.
    In M mode it also attempts to show the resulting shot under the existing light conditions (disregarding things like flash...), and the scale shows the amount of over/underexposure.
  4. When the scale is not showing, the live view tries to give you a "visible" representation of the scene, i.e. it acts as a physical viewfinder and does not take into account the current exposure settings or exposure compensation.

In summary:

  • The OK button toggles between an "optical viewfinder" and a "simulated pre-exposure" when the exposure compensation scale is shown.
  • The aperture always changes in modes where you control the aperture directly yourself. In other modes, it only changes when you are in the "simulated pre-exposure" mode.

So... if you want to see how stopping down impacts the DOF and how the picture will be exposed under the current lighting conditions, make sure the exposure compensation scale is showing.

If you just want to use LV as an optical finder, and/or possibly use flash in the studio, make sure the exposure compesation scale is not showing.

If you want to do something else, you might also be able to do that if you are careful... for instance, if you insist on working in S mode and want to see the resulting DOF and your light is stable, you could do so too... even though I guess that is a bit unusual Or if you want to focus with LV at full aperture, ensure your (current) aperture is showing as fully open, change to S mode and activate LV... etc.

 Per Baekgaard's gear list:Per Baekgaard's gear list
Nikon D800 Nikon D500 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G ED Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED +17 more
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