Quick tip: AutoISO

I’m quite astonished about the things I learn and why I have not learnt them earlier, since they are so apparent. One of those things was the discovery that using higher ISO improves my pictures in low light, since grain is typically not as disturbing as camera shake.

My problem was, that a lot of times, I set the camera to high ISO at night and forgot to reset it in the morning. The results: Heavily overexposed pictures. The solution: Let the camera decide about ISO and use the AutoISO functionality. It’s quite easy to set up:

  • Decide on the lowest shutter speed that you are willing to accept, e.g. 1/15 of a second
  • Decide on how high you are willing to go with ISO, e.g. ISO 1600

The camera will now use the lowest ISO, where it can maintain a shutter speed of 1/15 or shorter. On my Nikon D90 I can set it in the “SHOOTING MENU” (the one with the green camera on the left side) under “ISO sensitivity settings” at “ISO sensitivity auto control”.


Image from DigitalReview.

Next time in the morning when you wake up and take your camera out for a walk, you will be able to have nicely exposed pictures from the get go, instead of wondering why you get heavily overexposed images at a shutter speed of 1/4000.