Home Photography ISO: The Ultimate Guide

ISO: The Ultimate Guide

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I cover these topics: * Auto ISO * Noise * Dynamic Range * Extended ISO * ISO Invariance * ISO Performance * ISO Performance and Sensor Size …


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  1. I have used the technique you describe @6:50 for indoor soccer. Tests showed I needed ISO 6400 to get to 1/200s if I wanted my histogram to reach the right side, but my camera could only do ISO 3200. So I set to manual 1/200s and ISO 1600, pushed 2 stops in post and the pictures were less noisier and had more consistent colour compared to the ones I took at ISO 3200.
    My idea was that the amount of noise would depend on the light reaching the sensor, which depends on the aperture and shutter speed settings, not the ISO-setting and thus at 1/200s f/3.5 the ISO setting would be irrelevant unless the amplification would bring in more noise (more amplification = more output noise). That was my reason to use ISO 1600 instead, and it worked! (I have not tried setting ISO 800 though, because the display would be way too dark).

  2. In 1974 you could buy ASA 1600 film?? Really?? I remember pushing Tri-X (ASA 400) to EI 1600 or even 3200 using Diafine or Accufine, but I don't recall anyone actually MADE and ASA 1600 35mm film. What was that?

  3. About half way thru your video when you use the bucket analogy, I believe that you have this wrong. You are equating the bucket to the whole sensor, when you really must equate it to a single pixel. An APS-C sensor and a full-frame sensor that have the same pixel density (number of pixels/square area) will gather exactly the same amount of light (number of photons) at each pixel, so the two images would have the same overall exposure at the same ISO/SS/f.

  4. okay, some video camera's bmpcc 4k and i think the gh5s and the panasonic eva1 have dual native iso for video, can this be implemented for Photo camera's?
    And why is the native iso for video camera's higher, native is supposed to give maximum dynamic range
    but native iso in the a7s, sii, panasonic gh4/5/5s are higher in log video then for photography?
    and the problem with high iso is very dependent on subject.
    I personely (for most pictures) hate the ice water effect you get with long exposures,
    i allways do a seperate photo with very high iso for waterparts of the picture , and denoise the crap out of it, and mostly water takes this proces well. i just blend it in the long exposure.

  5. Tony, both you and Chelsea have a really superb way of explaining your subjects in such a way that makes it really interesting. You have the best tutorials!
    I have bought your book and find it incredibly informative. Extremely good value for money!!!

  6. When something is put in CAPS, or Capitalising the First Letter, it can indicate a Mental Form, That Only Exists in Mental Reality, as opposed to a physical form, that is objectively real. This is used particularly in philosophical writings and in elite circles. Capitalising ISO, would make sense because all standards of measurement are arbitrary in that they are a mental construct or form, about how to consistently talk about the physical world. Miles v's Kilometres shows how measurement standards by mental agreement to the form of measure, not from something objectively real.

  7. Man, I enjoy your videos.
    While another youtube channels are very short and they just go to the point in less than 15mins, yours are very comprehensive. So this is what I do: I use first short videos in another channels to understand knowledge about a field where I'm completely ignorant, as a first step. Then, now that my brain absorbed the basic concepts and my understanding has improved, I come to your channel to get a wider coverage about the concepts.
    I think your channel is rather to master concepts, for those who really care about the foundations of photography and want to learn beyond the basic 10-step tutorial
    Thanks for helping us learning more !

  8. I would like to challenge the statement that big sensors gather more light. If you put the sensor in a lens system and project an image on to it a large sensor will collect the same number of photons as a smaller sensor observing the same scene. The number of photons per unit area received by a small sensor is higher than the those observed by a larger sensor observing the same scene but provided the system does not saturate all will be equal when the the result appears on the back of the observer's retina.

  9. 17:50 when you started talking about the International Organisational for Standardization, i was like "yeah, that's in my management accounting textbook". was wondering if it was the same people. thanks😅

  10. Just a tidbit for you. Neither of those are acronyms. An acronym is a word formed by the first letter of each word, eg S.C.U.B.A. "Scuba" is a word, therefore an acronym. A.S.A. while each letter represents a word, 'ASA' itself is not a word, therefore it is an initialism. Hope that helps….

  11. Excellent video. You explain everything in both technical and practical terms. Would be great to see what your personal presets are in post production software are and walk us through why you chose those settings. Then sell them to us!

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