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    Exposure, colour and light conditions

    Arrow left Xperia X Compact support overview

    Good exposure for your photos requires the right amount of light. The camera automatically detects and adjusts to ambient light conditions.

    Different exposures are required, for example, when taking photos of faces, moving objects or in low light.

    Optimising light conditions

    • Look for light with direction and colour that gives a scene shape and depth. This type of light occurs just before sunrise and at sunset. Natural light from a window is also good.
    • For higher quality photos in low light, you need to keep the camera steady. You can place the camera on a solid surface and use the self-timer.
    • Even if light conditions are poor, try to take photos with and without the flash. Sometimes the quality is better without the flash.

    To use the flash

    1. When using the camera, tap the flash icon displayed on the screen, for example .
    2. If required, change the flash setting.
    3. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo or record a video.

    Available settings depend on the capturing mode selected.

    When the background is brighter than the object, use Fill flash to remove unwanted dark shadows.

    Colour, brightness and exposure value

    Your camera automatically adjusts the colour, brightness and exposure value by detecting the light conditions and estimating the colour temperature of ambient light. Digital cameras can only estimate the colour temperature, so you may need to adjust the settings to get it correct.

    If you experience yellow-coloured photos in indoor environments or bluish photos when using the flash, try adjusting the colour in Superior auto mode.

    To achieve better exposures in low light environments, change the brightness when using Superior auto and Video modes, or change the exposure value when using Manual mode.

    To adjust the colour and brightness

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap Colour and brightness.
    3. Drag the sliders to adjust the colour and brightness.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo or record a video.
    5. Tap to reset and close the colour setting.

    This setting is only available in Superior auto and Video modes.

      When using the camera, you can also adjust the colour and brightness by simply tapping the screen. To enable this function, make sure Object tracking is turned off.

    To adjust the exposure value

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap EV and drag the slider to adjust the exposure value.
    3. Close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo.

     Exposure at night — moving gif

    This setting is only available in Manual mode.

    Shutter speed

    Shutter speed refers to how long the shutter is open and the camera sensor is exposed to light.

    A fast shutter speed helps to freeze motion, while a slow shutter speed can create an effect called "motion blur", where moving objects appear blurred along their line of motion.

    The shutter speed is automatically adjusted in Superior auto and Video modes.

    To adjust the shutter speed

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap SS and drag the slider to adjust the shutter speed.
    3. Close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take the photo.

      This setting is only available in Manual mode for the main camera.

    ISO

    ISO determines how sensitive your camera is to light. A low ISO number means lower sensitivity, and a high ISO number means higher sensitivity. Higher sensitivity can add blur to your photos.

    Choose a higher ISO value when taking photos of moving objects or when taking photos in low light without the flash.

    If there is too much light, use the lowest ISO setting to achieve a higher image quality.

    ISO is automatically adjusted in Superior auto and Video modes.

    To adjust the ISO value

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap ISO and select an ISO value.
    3. Close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo.

    This setting is only available in Manual mode for the main camera.

    Strong backlight (HDR)

    In Superior auto and Video modes, strong backlight is automatically adjusted and indicated with . You can adjust for strong backlight manually in Manual mode.

    To adjust towards a strong backlight

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap the HDR slider to enable.
    3. Close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo.

      This setting is only available in Manual mode.

    White balance

    In Superior auto and Video modes, white balance adjustments are automatic. You can adjust the white balance manually in Manual mode.

    To adjust the white balance

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap WB and select one of the pre-defined light conditions, for example .
    3. Close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take a photo.

      This setting is only available in Manual mode.

    White balance settings

    Auto

    Adjust the colour balance automatically

    Cloudy

    Adjust the colour balance for a cloudy sky

    Daylight

    Adjust the colour balance for sunny outdoor conditions

    Fluorescent

    Adjust the colour balance for fluorescent lighting

    Incandescent

    Adjust the colour balance for warm lighting conditions, such as under light bulbs

    Optimising exposure

    Exposure metering measures the amount of light that strikes an object, to optimise exposure.

    Exposure metering is automatically adjusted in Superior auto and Video modes. You can adjust the exposure manually in Manual mode, for example to change the exposure for a specific part of the photo.

    To adjust the exposure with metering

    1. When using the camera, tap .
    2. Tap More > Metering.
    3. Select an exposure option and close the settings menu. The setting is saved.
    4. Press the camera key or tap the shutter button to take your photo.

      This setting is only available in Manual mode.

    Metering settings

    Face

    Measures the amount of light on a face, and adjusts the exposure so that the face is neither too dark nor too bright

    Multi

    Divides the image into several parts, and measures each part to optimise the exposure

    Centre

    Determines the centre of the image, and sets the exposure based on the brightness of the object

    Spot

    Adjusts the exposure for a very small part of the object

    Touch

    Allows you to touch the screen to determine the object or area where exposure should be optimised

    Scene selection

    Use the Scene selection feature to quickly set up the camera for common situations using pre-programmed scenes. The camera determines a number of settings for you to fit the selected scene, ensuring the best possible photo.

    Off The Scene selection feature is off and you can take photos manually.
    Soft Skin Take portraits using an enhanced beauty effect.
    Soft snap Use for shooting photos against a soft background.
    Anti motion blur Use for minimising camera shake when shooting a slightly dark scene.
    Landscape Use for landscape photos. The camera focuses on distant objects.
    Backlight correction HDR Use to improve details in high contrast shots. The built-in backlight correction analyses the image and automatically adjusts it to give you a perfectly lit shot.
    Night portrait Use for portrait photos taken at night or in poorly lit environments. Due to the long exposure time, the camera must be held still or placed on a stable surface.
    Night scene Use when taking photos at night or in poorly lit environments. Due to the long exposure time, the camera must be held still or placed on a stable surface.
    Hand-held twilight Use for taking hand-held low-light photos with reduced noise and blur.
    High sensitivity Use for taking photos without a flash in low light conditions. Reduces blur.
    Gourmet Use for shooting food arrangements in bright colour.
    Pet Use for taking photos of your pet. Reduces blur and red eyes.
    Beach Use for taking photos of seaside or lakeside scenes.
    Snow Use in bright environments to avoid overexposed photos.
    Party Use for indoor photos in poorly lit environments. This scene picks up indoor background lighting or candlelight. Due to the long exposure time, the camera must be held still or placed on a stable surface.
    Sports Use for photos of fast-moving objects. The short exposure time minimises motion blurring.
    Document Use for photos of text or drawings. Gives the photo sharper contrast.
    Fireworks Use for taking photos of fireworks in all their splendour.

    These settings are only available in Manual capturing mode.


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