What Do the Camera Buttons Do?


When you upgrade from an entry-level camera to a DSLR or a high-end camera, you can be confused since they have a lot of dials, buttons and parts which a beginner-level one does not include.

Most of the commonly used features in DSLR cameras or high-end cameras are easily access through the set of buttons. The following tips will be very useful to help you remembers the different buttons in many advanced DSLR model.

(NOTE: You should not forget that the button settings are not the same for all DSLR cameras or high-end cameras, so please find out the specific structure of buttons in the user guide)

  • The first is the shutter release – one of the most important buttons which is often a button of a large size located on the camera top panel, near the position that you put the right index finger to keep the camera. In case that you hold down this button, but don’t see anything happen, you may encounter one of the following problems. First, the focus of the camera is not right on the targeted subject, which happens sometime under inadequate lighting conditions. Hold down the button halfway to have your camera pre-focused, then fully hold down it to capture the image. Second, if the flash is being charged or a photo is being saved, you cannot use the shutter button to shoot the next photos until you completed the two above tasks.
  • If you see a “+” and a “-” icon, it represents the exposure compensation button. You control it to adjust the exposure manually.
  • The aperture button is commonly designed in the style that is partially similar to the closed shutter. You control it to adjust the aperture manually.
  • The self-timer button is often designed in the shape that is similar to a stopwatch. The buttons enables you to capture a delayed image. The duration that you want to delay the shot can be adjusted in the menu of the camera.
  • You won’t find any markings with the lens release button. It is commonly positioned directly to the right of the lens mount. Hold down and keep this button first before trying to unscrew the lens from the DSLR camera.
  • You often see a trashcan shape with the delete button. You can delete a single or multiple images using this button.
  • A “play” icon is to represent the playback button, as you often see with a DVD player. This button is used to view the stored images.
  • The menu button enables you to get access to the different menus of the camera. You often see the “MENU” or a lined paper shape with this button. And it can be on the button or next to the button.

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