What is that delay when shooting with Live View?

Started Jul 16, 2015 | Discussions thread
Guidenet Forum Pro • Posts: 15,748
Re: What is that delay when shooting with Live View?

MinAZ wrote:

I was using a Nikon DSLR (D3200) shooting in Live View. I noticed after taking a shot, the shutter *seems* slow even though the shot was very fast (shot at 1/2000s or faster). In fact my wife asked why I was shooting at such a slow shutter speed and I had to explain to her I was not. It left us mystified as to why it sounded so slow. Also, it took a while for the shot to shot cycle and for the preview to be displayed on the rear LCD, but we are assuming this is due to processing time to show the photo (correct if I am wrong).

Liveview will never be well implemented in a DSLR for a purely mechanical reason. That's what you're seeing. If you think about how it works, it will just make sense to you.

When in liveview mode, the mirror is up, the shutter is open, and you're getting an electronic view from the sensor in video mode sent to the rear LCD. When you engage the shutter, that mirror goes down, the shutter must close, and the sensor cycles to still capture mode. Then the mirror goes back up, the shutter triggers, the mirror goes back down and the image is stored to memory card. After this, the mirror has to go back up, the shutter opens and the sensor again cycles to video mode and sends the liveview image back to the screen. Lots of things go on when you press that shutter button, as you can see. Some cameras do these things a little differently, but that's the basic procedure.

When using the camera normally using the viewfinder, all that happens when you press the shutter is the mirror goes up, the shutter triggers and the mirror goes back down. Not so much stuff happening.

Liveview is sort of an add-on type thing with DSLRs. Moreover, most people don't use it very often because it's a less stable way to take an image. You're holding the silly thing out there at close to arm's length for no reason like a cell phone or something. Moreover, it's not as easy of a way to track faster moving things. This is why even mirrorless camera owners want an eyelevel viewfinder for most uses, especially on the better models. Even point and shoot upgraders generally move to an eyelevel viewfinder in short order most of the time. You can count on your fingers how often in a year I bother to use liveview and I do this for a living almost daily.

Liveview can be nice when you are shooting landscapes with a tripod or macro from a tripod. In rare occasions, it might be nice when holding the camera over your head for a stage presentation or similar, but most of the time, you should be using the way more stable eyelevel viewfinder.

Not that it really matters so much, but holding a DSLR out at arm's length also looks pretty dumb in public. I wouldn't care so much about that, but it does mark you as someone who doesn't really know how to use his camera. 

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Cheers, Craig
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