Easy explanation of DLSR dial mode

Easy explanation of DLSR dial mode

With a first DSLR on hand, Dial Mode will probably be a term that will confuse you the most. The first thing you need to do when you start out is to familiarize yourself with modes in a DSLR camera. In order to obtain better photographs one should certainly make proper benefits with several Mode option given on  the camera and comprehend the symbols of Dial Mode.

dslr dial mode

dslr dial mode


Shooting with Automatic Setting


Full Auto Mode:auto mode

 This mode adjusts the camera to use best setting in terms of aperture, shutter speed, white balance, ISO and flash for your shot. You do not have to worry about manual setting in this mode; all you do  is point and shoot. This mode is  useful when there isn’t enough  time for setting  the camera  to accommodate to  given  conditions.


Portrait Mode:portrait mode

 In this setting the major subject is in focus and everything in the  background is blurred hence sharpening the subject. This setting also expresses skin tones softly.

Macro Mode:Macro mode

 Similar to Portrait Mode, Macro Mode gives a shallow depth of field (more blurr )too and shoots close subjects. Moreover, this mode can entirely help you out with clicking macro objects like flowers, insects and other smaller things.


Landscape Mode:landscape mode

 This mode  covers entire range of scenery in great focus and vivid colors. Technically speaking this mode use higher aperture range (f11/f22) which helps you to get images with greater detail.


Sports/Action Mode:sports mode

This mode is used when you are trying to capture fast moving objects like a runner in a track, or an animal running in wildlife.Technically speaking This mode uses higher shutter value to shoot a moving object.

Night Mode:night mode

 Night scene mode shoots photos so that the details of the dark surrounding is not lost. The shutter speed is slower when shooting in low light conditions at night therefore a tripod is recommended. Lack of putting tripod into use will cause the image to be blurry and out of focus.

Semi Automatic Mode

For you to use semi automatics mode you need to have some idea about the three exposure triangle ISO , Aperture , Shutter speed . Though a complete understanding of these concept is not mandatory but  the knowledge would help  you to be more creative at your work.

Aperture Priority Mode (A or Av)

This is a setting where  an image is shot by controlling the Depth of field or the aperture. This mode allows you to decide the depth of field (controlling aperture) with out the need of controlling any other setting.

Shutter Priority Mode (S or TV)

Shutter speed is given priority in this mode. This mode is suitable for capturing a moving subject as a moment in time (freeze). This mode is also suitable for expressing flow of something. For example a slower shutter speed is used to shoot a trailing image of  a waterfall.

Program Mode(P)

It is better to use P Mode rather than Auto. In addition to Auto, P Mode allows you to control over parameters like ISO, flash and white balance. Aperture and shutter values are adjusted in proportional with balanced exposure to capture your best shot.

Fully Manual Mode

Manual Mode(M)

This mode is fully man-controlled mode and you can have full control over your camera. To use this mode you should have knowledge about exposure triangle (shutter speed, aperture value and ISO).You need to think about all settings before you use this mode in order to make it a fully flexible. You can take splendid photos at any condition if you know how to use this mode. I personally suggest you to go for manual , though you may have a  hard time adjusting to this setting at  but  eventually you will get a  grip at it.


In my experience, I have seen lots of people like to stick with only one modes of camera.We almost neglect the benefit of using other modes.The modes of camera is Manufacture in so variety that same photo can be taken in different way. So Understanding this modes can really help up in different situation and environment to take beautiful photo.



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About author

Anup Ghimire
Anup Ghimire 60 posts

Anup ghimire is a self learned Photographer/Designer and recently graduated in multimedia technologies from London metropolitan university.Traveling is something he loves the most after photography. You can see some of his photos at his facebook photography page https://www.facebook.com/intomyviewfinder

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