ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to shoot tethered with a Canon camera: Step-by-step guide

Updated on April 4, 2013
Fig 1 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"
Fig 1 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"

Reading photography articles you probably came across the curious term “shooting tethered”. This technique is being broadly used by both professional and hobbyist photographers these days and has been gaining popularity over the years.


Putting it simply, shooting tethered means to take photos with your camera while it’s being connected to a computer/laptop. This method gives you more control over images and allows you to achieve precise focus, which is especially helpful when taking photos with shallow DOF (Depth of Field) at wide apertures. Disadvantage of entry level DSLRs like Canon 450D is that the viewfinder covers about 95% of the area, for that reason when shooting tethered with your image displayed on the computer monitor, it allows you to see the exact way your photo will turn out after you press the shutter.

Fig 2 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"
Fig 2 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"

Don’t get me wrong, I fell in love with my Canon 450D after using a point & shoot camera for a few years first of all because I was able to compose my photos looking through the viewfinder and take photos without shutter lag (delay in time), therefore I shoot using the viewfinder most of the time. However, in some situations focusing accurately with viewfinder is a real challenge. This is when shooting tethered comes to your rescue, because even live view on the LCD screen can’t compete with the convenience of a computer monitor which mostly comes down to the size.

Even though it’s not always convenient to carry around a laptop, it’s still well worth it when you are going to have an important photo session (for example food photo session) and you must get it right because there will be no second chance to reshoot it. On that account a bit of extra weight is much better than regret.

Fig 3 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"
Fig 3 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"

What is needed?

So what exactly do you need to be able to shoot tethered? You will need:

  • DSLR camera
  • Tripod
  • USB cable
  • Computer/laptop
  • Camera software (in my case it’s “Digital Photo Professional”)
  • Remote shutter release (but not necessary)

Fig 4 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"
Fig 4 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"

How it works

Set your Canon DSLR camera (for other manufactures instructions might vary) on a tripod, make sure it’s securely mounted, position your computer/laptop nearby the camera and switch it on.

Plug the USB cable (which came with your camera) into your DSLR and then connect it to computer/laptop. Next switch on your camera, a small window will appear on your computer screen. Choose option “Downloads images from EOS camera” (just the same way as if you wanted to transfer photos from your camera to computer).

In the next window choose “Camera settings/Remote shooting”. Don’t forget enable “Live view” option in your camera (go to “Menu” / “Settings”/ “Live view function settings”/ “Live view shoot.”/ “Enable”). Now you are ready to shoot tethered.

Let’s take a looks at the list of advantages when shooting tethered.

Change of settings

You can adjust aperture, shutter speed, ISO and white balance settings in camera or on your computer screen at your choice. A big plus is that you don’t have to press the shutter button on your camera (that’s why remote shutter release to avoid camera shake isn’t necessary), because you can do it right in your computer.

Live histogram

Another advantage is that you have a display of the live histogram and if your high lights are blown out, it will instantly let you know with the “Exp.SIM” flashing rapidly.

Fig 5 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"
Fig 5 Shooting tethered with Canon camera using "Digital Photo Professional"

White balance

Next great thing is that you can easily correct the white balance by using a colour picker and choosing a white spot in your photo. On a side note, if you change white balance on computer, don’t forget to click “Apply to camera” to activate it there.


When focusing, you can use zoom window and it will give you live view of the focusing area at 100% zoom. This option greatly increases the precision of focus in your photos.

Now when you know all the advantages of shooting tethered, go and try this for yourself, it might be the technique you will use from now on.

Happy shooting!


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Dina Blaszczak profile imageAUTHOR

      Dina Blaszczak 

      5 years ago from Poland

      @Raghav You are welcome :)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Thanks, helpful.

    • Dina Blaszczak profile imageAUTHOR

      Dina Blaszczak 

      7 years ago from Poland

      @Splitfire07 Thanks for reading and leaving a comment :)

    • Spitfire07 profile image


      7 years ago from Calgary

      Very interesting. I never thought of tethered shooting, I'll have to try it out.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)