What is ISO in Digital Cameras?..and When to Change an ISO setting
This tutorial answers the question, what is ISO?, and how to use the ISO setting function in your digital camera.
(ISO is an abbreviation for the International Standards Organization. It is an organization that sets the standard
ratings for numerous products and services.)
In digital photography, the ISO rating or number is an indicator of how sensitive a camera's image sensor is to light
at a specific setting. Changing your cameras' ISO setting will amplify or decrease the image sensors' ability to read
light during an exposure.
When your camera is set to a higher numbered ISO setting such as ISO 800, less light is needed to obtain a correct
exposure than if the camera is set to ISO 100 for the same shot. That is, assuming other factors such as the camera
lens aperture setting, and the shutter speed setting remains the same.
Some of the most common ISO settings or ISO ratings are listed below.
Each higher ISO setting listed above makes the camera's image sensor twice as sensitive to light as the one before
it. For instance, setting your camera's ISO rating to ISO 400 will make the image sensor twice as sensitive to light
than if it were set to ISO 200.
The Exposure Triangle: The ISO setting, the camera shutter speed, and lens aperture setting are all part of
what is known in photography as the "Exposure Triangle". These three things work together to produce a properly
exposed images. Check the Camera Lens Aperture and the Camera Shutter articles to learn more about their
A basic compact camera like the Canon Powershot ELPH 130IS has ISO settings that range from ISO 100 to ISO
6400. The Canon EOS Rebel T5i is a Digital SLR camera with settings from ISO 100 to ISO 12,800. The ISO rating
of 12800 is also expandable to ISO 25600 if necessary.
Automatic and Manual ISO Settings: When you use your camera in the automatic mode, the ISO number will be
automatically set for you. When you use your camera in a manual or semi automatic mode, you will be able to set
the ISO number yourself. However, some very basic compact cameras do not allow you to manually change the
ISO setting. It will be set automatically depending on the amount of light in the scene you are photographing.
When should the ISO setting be changed? A simple example would be when you are photographing a dimly lit
scene and it is not possible to use the camera flash. Lets assume you cannot get a properly exposed picture, (the
picture is too dark) and the camera is set on ISO 100. No problem!
Try changing to a higher ISO setting like ISO 400, ISO 800, or which ever ISO setting will allow you to get that
properly exposed picture.As was previously mentioned, using higher ISO setting numbers makes the image sensor
more sensitive to light. Therefore, less light will be needed to produce a correctly exposed image.
The next example applies if you have a camera that allows you to manually change your camera lens aperture and
shutter speed settings. If you are not familiar with how they work together (along with the ISO setting) to make
properly exposed images, please read Camera Exposure Basics.
Lets say you are trying to shoot a fast moving subject and your camera is set on ISO 100. Your camera's exposure
metering system indicates that a lens aperture setting of F3.5 along with a shutter speed of 1/60 will produce a
correctly exposed image. However, the shutter speed 1/60 might not be fast enough to "freeze" the action. (moving
subjects might be blurred in an image when you are using slower shutter speeds).
The best way to solve the problem is to start by changing your camera setting from ISO 100 to ISO 200. That will
decrease the amount of light the camera image sensor will need for a good exposure. You will then be able to
increase your shutter speed from 1/60 to 1/125 as you attempt to get a properly exposed image.
If that shutter speed isn't fast enough, change from ISO 200 to ISO 400. Then increase the shutter speed to 1/250.
(let's assume that the shutter speed of 1/250 is fast enough to "freeze" the action). You will then have a nicely
exposed image without any blur in it.
There also may be times that you might have to change the ISO setting if you want to use a specific lens aperture
opening instead of adjusting the shutter speed. The same principle that was just used with the ISO and shutter
speed combination can be used the same way with the lens aperture and ISO settings.
In any case, always remember that adjusting the ISO setting may save the day when the shutter speed and aperture
settings are not producing the image you want.
Lower ISO numbers are better. While it is a great thing to be able to increase your camera's ISO rating in order
to get the shot you want, there is a down side to doing it. The down side is called "digital camera noise". The higher
your ISO setting, the more noise you will see in your picture. Noise is tiny dots or specks in the image that are
generated when the image sensors' sensitivity is amplified in order to read more light.
Picture #1 taken at IS0 1600 Picture #2 taken at ISO 100
Picture #1 was taken with a setting of ISO 1600. Picture #2 was taken with a setting of ISO100. You can see that
picture #1 is more grainy or speckled than picture #2. (Click either picture to enlarge) The difference between these
two images is the amount of "noise" that is visible.
There is always a little noise in a photographic image, but the noise might not be visible unless the image is greatly
enlarged or the ISO is set to a pretty high number. Also, digital camera noise will be more visible in darker areas of
The amount of noise in an image will also vary depending on the type of camera being used and the size of the
image sensor. Digital Single Lens Reflex cameras, because of their larger sensors and pixel sizes, will exhibit less
noise than Compact Digital Cameras at higher ISO settings.
In any case, getting a nicely exposed shot with some noise in the picture is better than no picture at all.
So now, the question what is ISO?, has been answered and hopefully you will be able to use this information when
making decisions about exposure settings for you images.
I also had this happen when I downloaded the images and reinserted the sd card. Either i didn't remove all the images clearly or it remained after downloading. Another friend told me that when it happens it is caused by a corruption in the SD card. In any case, I would use a new SD card.
Easy. Pick up the camera. Power on. On the back of the camera on the large outside circle there are 4 markings. The one on the right controls the flash. If you press it you will see that there are 4 options. Just keep clicking that right side of the outer circle until you get the setting that you prefer. Enjoy that little jewel. BKW
On the back right of camea press the menu button. then using the cirlce button around the set button & move across the top to the tools tab with the hammer & wrench icon. press set to inter in, then use the circle button agan to move down the options till u see the time & date option, press set to enter in to adjust & again use the circle button to adjust the time/date. the press set to save & then press menu to back out.
I would say that it is but then again it depends on what you're looking for. I exchanged the 100 hs for the 300 hs. The 300 hs offers optical zoom during video and a greater zoom range. I love the size of it which is a bit smaller than the 100 hs, but i found the buttons are alot easier to use than the 100 hs. I also think the +.1 f stop makes a difference in pictures and allows for brighter pictures. The wide angle lens is also a plus! All in all it really depends on what you want out of the camera. Hope this helps!
CD Rom for reading directions and use of the camera, the printed Manual, the battery, the charger, wrist strap, AV cables for DVD recorders and TV 's using such inputs., some also include lens /dust cloth and some include sleeve or case depending on this particular model.
I have never tried it for video, however, I would stay as far away from this camera as possible - it is JUNK. There is a major issue concerning the lens getting stuck in the extended position and remaining there. The camera is unuseable unless repaired and in Canada, there is a flat repair fee of $159 (including tax and shipping) - you can get a used one for half on e-bay. My first one was in my pocket when the lens jammed and I had to scrap it. I bought a second one and it jammed while I was using it. Just Google "Canon ELPH lens problems" and you will get a whole pile of hits. Canon must know it is a piece of junk yet instead of giving you a break with repairs, rip you off.