Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Started 2 months ago | Questions
Jcbailey Forum Member • Posts: 82
Ae-lock and Re-Compose

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

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Autonerd Senior Member • Posts: 2,461
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

I believe (and I could be wrong, I'm more of an old-camera guy) AE lock should work as you are saying. Not sure what camera you have, but do you have to press or hold the AE Lock button to get it to work? (On old cameras you had to hold it.)

Also, how high are you allowing your ISO to go? If you've set a limit, it's possible you're just not getting enough light on the sensor. A room lit by artificial light has an exposure value of about EV5. At 1/200th of a second at ISO 3200, your aperture would need to be around f/2.2. Larger if the room is dimly lit.

It might help us here to see a sample pic with EXIF data or at least get your exposure/ISO settings.

Aaron

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OP Jcbailey Forum Member • Posts: 82
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Autonerd wrote:

I believe (and I could be wrong, I'm more of an old-camera guy) AE lock should work as you are saying. Not sure what camera you have, but do you have to press or hold the AE Lock button to get it to work? (On old cameras you had to hold it.)

Also, how high are you allowing your ISO to go? If you've set a limit, it's possible you're just not getting enough light on the sensor. A room lit by artificial light has an exposure value of about EV5. At 1/200th of a second at ISO 3200, your aperture would need to be around f/2.2. Larger if the room is dimly lit.

It might help us here to see a sample pic with EXIF data or at least get your exposure/ISO settings.

Aaron

Still don’t understand it. It meters at 1/200 and I think my iso was 16000 shouldn’t it have got the light took the shot and it be bright? Why did it re-focus after pressing the shutter all the way down?

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hobbit mob
hobbit mob Regular Member • Posts: 383
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

Unless I'm misunderstanding, that sounds like it did exactly what it was supposed to do.  If the shot came out dark, I assume it used the 1/200 shutter speed?  If so, it locked that in.  If you metered against the light, it'll choose a faster shutter speed to try to get the light metered correctly, it will ignore the rest of the frame (if you have center weighted/spot metering on).  The rest of the room should be dark and the light should be exposed correctly.  If it re-metered in the dark area, it would choose a lower shutter speed (probably limited to 1/60 by default) to expose the shadows.

check your custom settings to see how you have your AE lock button and shutter set up.  Check for press/hold, AF/AE lock settings, shutter settings (behavior when you press it, it can meter/take a photo/autfocus and some variations of those).

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Bill Ferris
Bill Ferris Veteran Member • Posts: 7,286
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

Did you read this reply to one of your previous threads?

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/65423995

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark.

Metering off the light in the dark room would have set the exposure & lightness of the scene 1 to 2 stops below optimal. When metering in a space to use as a reference for exposure and ISO settings, it's best to find a surface that's middle gray in tonality. If that's not available, if very dark or very light are what's available, you'll need to dial-in exposure compensation to compensate for metering off surfaces that are 1 to 2 stops off middle gray.

my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

As for the autofocus, were you in single-shot mode or continuous AF? Also, was your camera setup so the shutter release button activated autofocus or so a button on the back side of the camera activated AF?

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OP Jcbailey Forum Member • Posts: 82
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

hobbit mob wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

Unless I'm misunderstanding, that sounds like it did exactly what it was supposed to do. If the shot came out dark, I assume it used the 1/200 shutter speed? If so, it locked that in. If you metered against the light, it'll choose a faster shutter speed to try to get the light metered correctly, it will ignore the rest of the frame (if you have center weighted/spot metering on). The rest of the room should be dark and the light should be exposed correctly. If it re-metered in the dark area, it would choose a lower shutter speed (probably limited to 1/60 by default) to expose the shadows.

check your custom settings to see how you have your AE lock button and shutter set up. Check for press/hold, AF/AE lock settings, shutter settings (behavior when you press it, it can meter/take a photo/autfocus and some variations of those).

So let me get this correct if it metered at 1/200 it suppose to be dark because a higher shutter speed is dark. if it metered at 1/60 that means it has more light? is this correct? i was at 16000 iso. probably not enough light. i guess

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OP Jcbailey Forum Member • Posts: 82
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Bill Ferris wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

Did you read this reply to one of your previous threads?

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/65423995

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark.

Metering off the light in the dark room would have set the exposure & lightness of the scene 1 to 2 stops below optimal. When metering in a space to use as a reference for exposure and ISO settings, it's best to find a surface that's middle gray in tonality. If that's not available, if very dark or very light are what's available, you'll need to dial-in exposure compensation to compensate for metering off surfaces that are 1 to 2 stops off middle gray.

my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

As for the autofocus, were you in single-shot mode or continuous AF? Also, was your camera setup so the shutter release button activated autofocus or so a button on the back side of the camera activated AF?

Last one was spot metering i think. this one was evaluative and AE-lock. to me they are diffrent. plus i haven't said anything here in weeks or the last one was a week ago

Thanks for the reply though

 Jcbailey's gear list:Jcbailey's gear list
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Bill Ferris
Bill Ferris Veteran Member • Posts: 7,286
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

Bill Ferris wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

Did you read this reply to one of your previous threads?

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/65423995

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark.

Metering off the light in the dark room would have set the exposure & lightness of the scene 1 to 2 stops below optimal. When metering in a space to use as a reference for exposure and ISO settings, it's best to find a surface that's middle gray in tonality. If that's not available, if very dark or very light are what's available, you'll need to dial-in exposure compensation to compensate for metering off surfaces that are 1 to 2 stops off middle gray.

my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

As for the autofocus, were you in single-shot mode or continuous AF? Also, was your camera setup so the shutter release button activated autofocus or so a button on the back side of the camera activated AF?

Last one was spot metering i think. this one was evaluative and AE-lock. to me they are diffrent. plus i haven't said anything here in weeks or the last one was a week ago

Thanks for the reply though

Good luck.

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Bill Ferris Photography
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Bill Ferris
Bill Ferris Veteran Member • Posts: 7,286
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

hobbit mob wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

Unless I'm misunderstanding, that sounds like it did exactly what it was supposed to do. If the shot came out dark, I assume it used the 1/200 shutter speed? If so, it locked that in. If you metered against the light, it'll choose a faster shutter speed to try to get the light metered correctly, it will ignore the rest of the frame (if you have center weighted/spot metering on). The rest of the room should be dark and the light should be exposed correctly. If it re-metered in the dark area, it would choose a lower shutter speed (probably limited to 1/60 by default) to expose the shadows.

check your custom settings to see how you have your AE lock button and shutter set up. Check for press/hold, AF/AE lock settings, shutter settings (behavior when you press it, it can meter/take a photo/autfocus and some variations of those).

So let me get this correct if it metered at 1/200 it suppose to be dark because a higher shutter speed is dark. if it metered at 1/60 that means it has more light? is this correct? i was at 16000 iso. probably not enough light. i guess

Any shutter speed can be "bright" if there's  enough light in the scene.

Camera's are designed to make the world look middle gray in lightness. If you meter off a bright source (e,g. a light) and target a meter reading of 0, the settings will darken the light enough so it appears middle gray. That's going to be 1 to 2 stops  darker than it would normally look? By locking in those settings, the camera was forced to make photos capturing scenes darker than they look to the eye.

A shutter speed of 1/60 second is nearly 2-stops brighter in exposure than 1/200 and would have compensated for metering off the brightest part of the scene.

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Autonerd Senior Member • Posts: 2,461
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

So let me get this correct if it metered at 1/200 it suppose to be dark because a higher shutter speed is dark. if it metered at 1/60 that means it has more light? is this correct? i was at 16000 iso. probably not enough light. i guess

1/60 of a second is longer than 1/200 of a second and therefore lets in more light. Or vice-versa -- 1/200 lets in less light than 1/60.

Aaron

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stevet1 Regular Member • Posts: 486
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

The way I look at it, metering works kind of like the pupils of your eye.

If you look at a bright light or the sun, the pupils of your eye will narrow to tiny little slits so that you don;t go blind. This is the fast shutter speed.

If you go into a dark room, the pupils of your eye will widen to let in more light. This is the slow shutter speed.

You can see this happening to a cat's eyes as he or she moves in and out of light and dark areas.

If you locked your exposure when the camera was looking a the bright light, your camera's pupils will be narrowed to little slits. When you recomposed and took a shot with your pupils still narrowed to tiny little slits, the picture is going to come out dark.

Steve Thomas

alcelc
alcelc Forum Pro • Posts: 16,178
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

Autonerd wrote:

I believe (and I could be wrong, I'm more of an old-camera guy) AE lock should work as you are saying. Not sure what camera you have, but do you have to press or hold the AE Lock button to get it to work? (On old cameras you had to hold it.)

Also, how high are you allowing your ISO to go? If you've set a limit, it's possible you're just not getting enough light on the sensor. A room lit by artificial light has an exposure value of about EV5. At 1/200th of a second at ISO 3200, your aperture would need to be around f/2.2. Larger if the room is dimly lit.

It might help us here to see a sample pic with EXIF data or at least get your exposure/ISO settings.

Aaron

Still don’t understand it. It meters at 1/200 and I think my iso was 16000 shouldn’t it have got the light took the shot and it be bright?

That is the exposure your camera throught correct to expose for the light source. But when you want a brighter output to show the darker area away from the light, did you sure you don't need to increase exposure, e.g. 1/10" and ISO32000?

Why did it re-focus after pressing the shutter all the way down?

When you lock the exposure value, not sure which metering mode used, in case if spot or center weight metering (where highlight area is dominant of the metering area) was used, the meter reading would think the scene is bright so a right exposure ( naturally lower than need for a darker area) would be used. For your example was 1/200" & ISO16000.

When you do recompose, says pointed the cam towards the dark area, without AEL on highlight, the cam should take reading from the darker area of the room and so would use higher exposure for a brighter output ( just to say, 1/10" & ISO32000?) to show the detail of darker area better. Please note, the cost of brighter shadow area is the light will be over exposed.

However under AEL, the cam will use the exposure setting as taken from the bright area, hence you will get a darker (relative to taking reading from dark area) output but the light area will be well exposed.

For your case, if you are not looking forward to expose on the light source, e.g. wish to show the detail of the light bulb etc, do not lock AE on the light source.

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Albert
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BBbuilder467 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,701
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark. my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

When I use AE lock, it just locks those settings in for the area or subject in frame. When I recompose, that area/subject is properly exposed. The focus is separate. If I wanted the focus locked, then use AF lock. When using AE lock, the subject I metered on should still be in the frame, but it will refocus at half-press.

Using AE lock is similar to setting the exposure in Manual Exposure Mode. The camera is doing what it was told.

Focus/recompose and meter/recompose are two different things.

alcelc
alcelc Forum Pro • Posts: 16,178
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose
1

Jcbailey wrote:

Bill Ferris wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

Did you read this reply to one of your previous threads?

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/65423995

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark.

Metering off the light in the dark room would have set the exposure & lightness of the scene 1 to 2 stops below optimal. When metering in a space to use as a reference for exposure and ISO settings, it's best to find a surface that's middle gray in tonality. If that's not available, if very dark or very light are what's available, you'll need to dial-in exposure compensation to compensate for metering off surfaces that are 1 to 2 stops off middle gray.

my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

As for the autofocus, were you in single-shot mode or continuous AF? Also, was your camera setup so the shutter release button activated autofocus or so a button on the back side of the camera activated AF?

Last one was spot metering i think. this one was evaluative

Evaluate metering ( or called Matrix metering, Multiple metering etc by different brand) indeed is to take the exposure reading (the brightness) of the entire frame, and according to the algorithm of the camera to give priority on certain areas (degree of brightness) that the engineers behind your camera thought it will produce the best result. This reading will also be set as center (0ev) of the exposure meter. A set of parameters will be setup for a combined result which can produce an output for such level of brightness. (Under AEL, that set of parameters will be fixed used despite what meter reading it will get.)

Therefore the camera will take into consideration of the shadow and highlight areas in the frame on top of the focusing area for a RELATIVELY more balance result (due to different priority of different brands, down to models, the result could be difference).

Spot, as you know shall concentrate on a smaller area to measure the brightness, it is best for the aimed target since majority of its surrounding brightness condition will be ignored. Center weight will use a larger size of area to take measurement and so partial of the surrounding of the aimed target will be considered for a relatively more balance result than Spot, but more limited than Evaluate.

As from above, the size of area to take the metering will affect the result. The contrast of the frame (the darkest and brightness) and also how podominant of lightness condition (a lot of darkest or bfightness) will also affect the measured result. Spot and Center weight will also be affected by where you take the reading.

You can test it very easily. Switch on a tiny table light (best to use a small light blub), or light a candle in a dark room:

  1. Point your cam to the light, use S mode (you use shutter speed here) and manual ISO at 200 (to use a single variable here for easier understanding). Note the suggested parameters, then
  2. move the camera away from the light source, again note the parameters.

You could find a faster shutter speed (less amount of light is allowed to reach the sesnor) will be used in the 1st set of metering. Spot metering should use the fastest shutter speed, following by Center Weight, then Evaluation.

You should also find a slower shutter speed will be used in 2nd set of metering...

To your case, you use AEL to lock the set of used parameters which was taken at the light source!

You might have misunderstand that when you do AEL, you are not telling your camera to shoot for a result similar to the brightness condition as when you pointed towards the light source. You are just ask the camera to use the set of parameters that the camera will use to shoot for the light only.

Wish this might help.

and AE-lock. to me they are diffrent. plus i haven't said anything here in weeks or the last one was a week ago

Thanks for the reply though

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Albert
** Please forgive my typo error.
** Please feel free to download the original image I posted here and edit it as you like **

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PhotoTeach2 Forum Pro • Posts: 12,486
Re: Ae-lock and Re-Compose

Jcbailey wrote:

Bill Ferris wrote:

Jcbailey wrote:

I'm confused on how AE-lock works. I was adivsed and also tried this. Walk into a room point at what i want to capture, lock the exposure with AE-lock. re-compose and take the shot. in theory the shot should have the same exposure as when i locked it. I don't see this.

Did you read this reply to one of your previous threads?

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/65423995

I second the suggestion to READ this again ...

for example. i went into a dark room and found some light. i metered the light and my Shutter was at 1/200 to see if it was right i metered the dark spot and it was 1/60. so i Ae-locked the 1/200 from the light locked it re-composed and the shot came out dark.

Because it set the exposure to render the (bright/white) "light" as a GRAY, making the rest of the scene even darker. (as explained below)

Spot-Metering MUST be read from a (average-reflectance) GRAY, unless you use either + or - EC (Exposure-Compensation).  +2 if white and +3 if a light-source

Metering off the light in the dark room would have set the exposure & lightness of the scene 1 to 2 stops below optimal. When metering in a space to use as a reference for exposure and ISO settings, it's best to find a surface that's middle gray in tonality. If that's not available, if very dark or very light are what's available, you'll need to dial-in exposure compensation to compensate for metering off surfaces that are 1 to 2 stops off middle gray.

my camera focused again while i pressed the shutter all the way down and took whatever shot it wanted. I was in AV mode with a fixed iso.

What happend?

As for the autofocus, were you in single-shot mode or continuous AF? Also, was your camera setup so the shutter release button activated autofocus or so a button on the back side of the camera activated AF?

Last one was spot metering i think. this one was evaluative and AE-lock.

AE (and AF) lock can be custom set differently in different cameras.

Evaluative-Metering is designed to be used as a POINT & SHOOT camera since it is designed to already make the (intelligent) calculations for you.  Often it works very well, but I personally like to make my own decisions, BUT ... that is hard to do in Evaluative because you don't know what decisions it has already done.

So Average/Center-Weighted or Spot is better to ensure your own preference.

BUT ... Spot-Metering REQUIRES you to fully understand EC and understand you MUST use it (correctly) when (spot) metering from either a light or dark area.

+1 or +2 if white (and +3 if a light "source").

-1 or -2 if dark for black.

Thanks for the reply though

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