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Why is auto ISO not available in the M mode?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by New Daddy, Feb 5, 2011.

  1. New Daddy

    New Daddy Mu-43 Regular

    193
    Jan 24, 2011
    Why is auto ISO not available in the M mode?
    There are times when I want to manually set the shutter speed and the aperture but want the camera to pick the best ISO for appropriate exposure.
    But my GF1's M mode does not provide auto ISO.
    Any reason for that?
    I hate to compare with my LX3, but my LX3 made shooting in the M mode easier by providing auto ISO.
    Thus, allgorithm-wise, Panasonic could have easily built auto ISO into the M mode.
     
  2. andyw

    andyw Mu-43 Veteran

    410
    Jan 27, 2010
    Surrey. UK
    It's because it's the whole point of manual mode, everything is manual. The fact that your LX3 has auto in manual mode just may be that it's a point (A very good one!) and shoot where as the GF-1 is for people who want to fiddle more. Try 'P' mode. This may be more suitable.

    I use AV 95% of the time!
     
  3. joele

    joele Mu-43 Regular

    161
    Dec 12, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia
    The point of manual is you want to exactly control the exposure, you can't do that with auto-iso on, so it makes sense not to have it there...
     
  4. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Are you aware of the "program shift" capability in P mode?

    I find it has alsmost completely eliminated the need for M mode for me.

    With the not-so-great high ISO performance of these cams, I am cautious about letting it pick too high an ISO
     
  5. New Daddy

    New Daddy Mu-43 Regular

    193
    Jan 24, 2011
    I can't understand that argument. Of the three axis for exposure (aperture, shutter speed, & ISO), why wouldn't there be a situation where you want to manually set the first two but leave the camera to decide the ISO automatically? There were plenty of such situations in my case.

    I'm not saying in the M mode you shouldn't be able to set the ISO manually. I'm saying an auto ISO would have been very convenient even in the M mode. So, no DSLRs, entry-level or high-end, provide auto ISO in the M mode?
     
  6. New Daddy

    New Daddy Mu-43 Regular

    193
    Jan 24, 2011
    Yes, I'm aware of program shift. My issue with the program shift, at least as I noticed, was that it compensates faster shutter speed with larger aperture, and vice versa. So, say, if I wanted a high shutter speed but small aperture, for example to capture my kids' activities with large DOF, I'd need to go to the M mode. But without auto ISO in the M mode, my initial pictures are almost always underexposed in such situation. Yes, I then adjust the ISO manually, but the moment may have gone already, it being a kids' activity. With LX3 and its auto ISO in the M mode, this was not an inssue.

    Correct me if I'm wrong about the program shift.
     
  7. hmpws

    hmpws Mu-43 Regular

    177
    Apr 24, 2010
    Auckland, New Zealand
    My friend who shoots with a Nikon told me that he uses M mode with Auto-ISO (whatever the Nikon's equivalent is) and it sounds useful.

    Basically he chooses the shutter and aperture, the camera chooses the ISO to expose correctly (EV compensation is also available!). It sounds pretty useful to me indeed. As far as I know this is not available in mu4/3.
     
  8. pictor

    pictor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    635
    Jul 17, 2010
    There are situations in which you want to control the depth of field and need a short enough shutter speed to freeze action and have ISO set as low as possible. The only way to get the camera to do that, is auto ISO in manual mode. Just set ISO to whatever value you want, if you do not want the camera to set ISO automatically in manual mode. It is as easy as that. But auto ISO should always be auto ISO, because that's the whole point of auto ISO. The word 'auto' means 'auto' and not 'manual' and therefore the photographer should get auto ISO when auto ISO is set. If auto ISO did something else, let's say setting the ISO to a fixed value in manual mode, then it would not be auto ISO anymore.

    The thoughtless photographers who forget setting the ISO manually (and who do not intend to let the camera choose ISO) when going into manual mode are the only reason, because auto ISO does something else than auto ISO in some cameras. But all other photographers loose the only automatic tool to master the situation described above.
     
  9. pictor

    pictor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    635
    Jul 17, 2010
    At least Olympus lets one choose, if one wants auto ISO be auto ISO in manual mode or not. I don't know, if Panasonic lets one choose, too. I have enabled auto ISO in manual mode.
     
  10. DanGuy48

    DanGuy48 Mu-43 Regular

    I understand it; it's a design decision. I actually agree with it. They've designed for us a very fast camera, when used in any of it's more automated modes. For the person who takes a more deliberative approach, there's manual. I like the decision that manual is totally manual, I make all the adjustments, not the camera.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. jimr.pdx

    jimr.pdx Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    Dec 5, 2010
    near Longview ~1hr from PDX
    Jim R
    Pentax actually makes two separate modes to cover this - their TAv mode is in essence M with auto ISO, and M mode where auto-ISO is not an option. Pentax loves modes more than most, it also has ISO-priority mode but I haven't used that one yet.
     
  12. New Daddy

    New Daddy Mu-43 Regular

    193
    Jan 24, 2011
    You are missing my point. The M mode in the Panasonic m4/3s is fully manual as it is now. Adding an auto ISO option in the M mode does not make it non-manual.

    If you think about the film days, you were stuck with the same roll of film and were only able to adjust the shutter and aperture in the M mode. Is using an auto-ISO in the M mode so different from that, in the sense that you are only adjusting the shuter and aperture, in the full manual mode?

    According to the answers that I got from a similar but different question, Nikon only introduced M-mode auto ISO recently, so the industry may be moving towards it in the long run.

    Is auto-ISO in M mode available in 2nd generation Panasonics?: Micro Four Thirds Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review
     
  13. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    No, you chose the ISO when you loaded the roll of film, in that sense, it was full manual.
     
  14. thomphoto

    thomphoto New to Mu-43

    3
    Jan 9, 2011
    Owensboro, KY
    If you used auto ISO, you defeat the whole purpose of manual, in that the camera is still setting the final exposure, not you. I don't see any way to figure otherwise.
     
  15. pictor

    pictor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    635
    Jul 17, 2010
    There are several people who have explained this in this thread. It is always "great" to see someone posting something which reveals, that the poster is completely ignorant to all posts which have been written before.

    But again: Exposure consists of three parameters: aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. If you want fully manual control over exposure, you will have to set all three parameters manually. If you don't set all of them, the camera will set the missing parameters automatically. That's exactly what auto exposure modes are for.
     
  16. pictor

    pictor Mu-43 Top Veteran

    635
    Jul 17, 2010
    With auto ISO being set, at least all Nikon DSLRs set ISO in manual mode automatically. This was the case with my D90 and this is the case for all high end bodies of Nikon, too, since a lot of sport photographers use auto ISO in manual mode. AFAIK, Canon does the same, since this mode is so important for Sports photographers. Olympus lets the photographer choose, if auto ISO should mean auto ISO in manual mode (I don't know, which ISO will be set, if one does not activate auto ISO in manual mode - maybe base ISO, but that's only a guess). But I have written more about this in posting #8.
     
  17. DanGuy48

    DanGuy48 Mu-43 Regular

    No, I'm not missing your point, I'm disagreeing with it. As you say, in film days, you had your Kodachome 25, set you set the camera controls and exposed for that. That to me is manual photography. Having the camera sliding gain on the chip is not manual to me. I have no problem with the option itself, only that it should not then be called manual, IMHO. Panasonic has a true manual.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. joele

    joele Mu-43 Regular

    161
    Dec 12, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia
    ^^^ Agreed if they put it in it should be called something different like Pentax did (TAv)