Program mode , when and why using it ? Locked

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
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Klaus dk
Klaus dk Veteran Member • Posts: 8,102
In defense of Program mode

P mode offers a fast and convenient way to balance ISO, aperture and exposure time automatically. Depending on camera, you can set an upper limit for ISO, or use a fixed ISO setting, and "program" an exposure time upper limit relative to the focal length. My camera offers a choice from fast to slow.

Further, you have a program shift function to change the combination of aperture and exposure time at will.

In P mode, you shoot first and chimp afterwards to see if the settings were OK. In any other mode, you must think before you shoot. This I find both efficient and convenient for shooting where the light and subjects constantly change, AKA run-and-gun shooting. Most of the time, P mode will choose exposure and ISO close to where I would have set it myself.

I've shot a few street fairs and other events, and P mode leaves me free to compose and choose where I want AF to focus, without having to worry about exposure. In the studio, I shoot all manual: fixed aperture, time and ISO, but still AF.

IMHO, with the DR of modern digital cameras, automatic exposure is good enough. It's rarely more than one stop off either way, which is easily salvaged in post. Getting the shot is more important than a stop of noise that could have been avoided. I'm not shooting altarpieces.

 Klaus dk's gear list:Klaus dk's gear list
Sony RX100 II Canon EOS R Canon EOS R5 Canon EF 135mm F2.8 SF Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM +14 more
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