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5 - Mr. ISO

Mr. ISO speaks "words" like these: 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1600.

100, 200, 400, 800, 1600

The words are called ISO settings.

ISO stands for International Standards Organization.

The "Volume Level" for the Sensor

Unlike shutter speed and aperture, ISO doesn't control how much light reaches the sensor.

Instead, ISO changes the sensitivity of the sensor to light.

A low value is like having the sensor at a low volume level.

At an ISO setting of 100, the sensor isn't very sensitive too light.

So, you better be out in the sun.

The photographs will have better color and less noise (stray specs of color).

If there's isn't much light, turn the sensor "volume" up.

Select a higher ISO number.

For example, if your camera is blinking Lo at you, increase the ISO setting.

How Do You Set the ISO?

There may be an ISO button, or look for ISO on a menu.

If there's a button, press and hold the button down, and turn a knob.

If there are two knobs, try one or the other.

In-between ISO Numbers

Your camera probably has more ISO settings in-between those above.

And, you may not have the ISO settings of 100 or 1600.

Next, let's look at how the three people in your camera talk to each other.


Be sure to check the ISO when you pick up your camera.

For example, you may have set the ISO to 1600 the night before.

If you don't check the ISO, you may photograph out in the sun at 1600 instead of 100 or 200.