ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Metering Modes in Photography

Updated on April 12, 2013

This is how subject brightness is measured by the camera. This is because the amount of light reflected by different subjects vary. Bright subjects will reflect more light compared to darker subject. The camera is standardised in way that the middle grey is set as the reference colour. Middle grey is the colour deemed to be halfway between white and black. If it measured it is about 18% of reflected light by the subject. This means that if you have a subject that reflects more than 18% of light the camera will assume it is over-exposed, and if it reflects less that 18% of light, the subject is assumed to be under-exposed. Camera metering will work pretty well if the lighting is evenly distributed in the scene but in instances where there is high contrast in lighting the camera might find it hard to get balanced metering.

grey tone
grey tone

Most cameras offer different metering modes in case you encounter varying lighting in a scene:

Evaluative/Matrix/Overall Metering:It takes into consideration
everything in your frame i.e. the camera measure the light intensity of several
points of the scene and gets the average exposure.This is usually the default metering setting since it is assumed that most of the time the lighting in your scene will
have even distribution of lighting

Spot/Partial Metering: this measures a small area in the scene, without being influenced by other areas in the scene. It can be at the centre on another part depending on whether your camera has got the function to change from the centre. This makes it very useful in high contrast scenes since the camera is able to identify the most important part of your scene. In cases where the background is too bright or too dark compared to the subject, spot metering will concentrate on the subject and exclude the background making your subject to be well exposed without being influenced by the lighting in the background.

Centre Weighted Metering: it emphasizes largely on the centre, it means the meter will give over 75% emphases on the material at the centre of the frame. This makes it less influenced by other parts at the edges of the scene that may be in contrast with the subject which is particularly useful when the subject takes quite a significant area on the scene i.e. it occupies a large space. This assumes that most of your subjects are mostly placed at the centre, so ensure that your subject is placed at the centre when using this mode.

Metering can be used in combination with Exposure compensation whereby you trick your camera into allowing more light to compensate for inadequate lighting. To lighten up your subject you increase the exposure compensation by 1 stop, you specify +1 to open the aperture or slow down the shutter speed. You use this when you have bright backgrounds than the subject. To darken the subject you decrease the exposure compensation by 1stop, you specify -1 to reduce the aperture or increase the shutter speed. How much exposure compensation you need to set depends on the tonality of the background and the effect you are trying to achieve.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • mikkar profile imageAUTHOR

      Michael 

      5 years ago from Nairobi

      thanks Gamble

    • Jeff Gamble profile image

      Jeff Gamble 

      5 years ago from Denton, Texas

      Great explanation of metering modes

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com 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: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    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 googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    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)
    Marketing
    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.
    Statistics
    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)