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Good Advice (that I wished someone had given me) #1
Mark Alderson's picture
by Mark Alderson
May 13, 2012 - 7:14pm

This is really not a question, but more of something to remember when we go out to shot pictures.

So, we went to a graduation party for one of our friends son (college) and grandson (kindergarten) yesterday into last night. Had a band there (Back to Blue,, awesome, bonfire, barbecue, margarita machine, beer, etc.

Well, I decided to take my camera and lenses to have a little fun. Make sure you check all your settings on your camera and lenses, which I partially failed to do. I had turned IS off on a couple of lenses when I was shooting the moon last week from a tripod, and I forgot to turn it back on. The pictures weren't bad, but seemed to lack some crispness. I first attributed it to the overcast conditions when I started thinking that maybe I forgot something. I did.

So, no great loss, it was just for fun, but from now on I'll take a little extra time to make sure everything is how it should be.

Do I have to give up my membership in the forum now? :)


Dieter's picture
by Dieter
May 22, 2012 - 7:35am


The mode dial lock is also available in other countries but I thought a link to Canon US is more helpful here as the similar information on the Austrian Canon site

Unfortunately it’s even more expensive in Europe (approx 120 Euros).

Best, Dieter

PhotoJoseph's picture
by PhotoJoseph
May 22, 2012 - 2:01pm


When I first read the first page you sent, I thought it said “for free”. Now I see it says “for a fee”. Silly me :)


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David  Moore's picture
by David Moore
May 13, 2012 - 9:25pm

Ive been photographing for 30 years and last week I lent out a camera to a newbie and I ended up shooting a job in jpg mode. Didn’t realize till I got home. Now Im the Newbie.
Good advise for all.
Twitter= @davidbmoore
Scottsdale AZ

PhotoJoseph's picture
by PhotoJoseph
May 14, 2012 - 4:59pm

Is this confession time?

I often forget to check the dial on my 5D Mk II and it always gets bumped into another mode in the camera bag. I’ve shot in full P before, or even worse in M with the wrong settings, because I didn’t bother to check. Fortunately I’m good about chimping the first few shots and usually notice it pretty quickly, but god that’s annoying. It’s one of the many reasons I prefer the 1Ds camera… no dials to bump out of place. Some of the newer dSLRs have locks on the dials though, so that’s good.

Oh, and sometimes I forget that I’m shooting with my X100 in manual focus mode and end up with blurry photos because I forgot to press the focus button. D’oh.


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Marcus 's picture
by Marcus
May 15, 2012 - 6:02am

99.9% of the time I leave VR enabled on my lenses.

Therefore I have a small piece of gaffer tape on the switch (and the focus limit switch) to prevent accidental movement. This at least means I have to make a very conscious decision to turn it off.

I don’t even switch it off on a tripod most times and have never noticed it cause any problems with the images.

One of the dumbest options on many DSLR’s is the option to shoot with no memory card installed. This seems to invite disaster to me!

PhotoJoseph's picture
by PhotoJoseph
May 15, 2012 - 7:36am

Marcus (and all),

You definitely want to disable VR/IS when shooting over about 1/125 of a second, if memory serves. You will actually introduce shake to the photos. I did some tests a while ago, and was really shocked at how much got introduced (and that was on a $4,000 lens). Put it on a tripod, shoot at a high shutter speed and leave VR/IS on.

I’d guess if you did a side-by-side Marcus, you might change your thoughts on it :)

Of course maybe your lens handles it better than mine did… entirely possible. But someone else told me years ago about the problem, and I tested it and sure enough… ouch.

For the memory card issue, be sure to set your dSLR to NOT shoot when no card is present. Solves that problem right there!


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Dieter's picture
by Dieter
May 18, 2012 - 10:47am

Concerning the distorted mode dial on Canons 5DII:

I had the same issue with my 7D and solved it by an upgrade Canon offers for the 7D/5DII.

Check it out at Conon’s website

Greeting from Vienna/Austria,

PhotoJoseph's picture
by PhotoJoseph
May 18, 2012 - 11:15pm


That’s great, thanks! I think I saw that before but opted not to spend the $100 on it. However, it’s free to non US residents?! Aw man…


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d kenner's picture
by d kenner
May 19, 2012 - 12:01am

I have a label on the view screen on my Nikon that reads “Check ISO”. Even right in front of me I forget…

Rick DeNatale's picture
by Rick DeNatale
May 26, 2012 - 1:57pm

My favorite failure in this regard is forgetting that I’d turned on auto-bracketing for HDRs and then can’t figure out why I’m getting inconsistent exposures.

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