ISO in Photography

Post On: 29 February 2020
February 29, 2020

ISO in Photography

By definition ISO is a measure of the sensitivity of a camera sensor to light. The increased the ISO setting, the more sensitive the digicam sensor is to light.

To make it easier to understand about ISO and its importance in photography, we illustrate ISO with ‘ants’. The task of each ant is to collect light entering the lens. Think of ants as worker ants, so if the camera is set to ISO 300 then you have 300 worker ants, and so on.

Examples to facilitate understanding of ISO are like this; for example there are two cameras, the first camera is set at a f / 1.8 aperture with ISO 100. While the second camera with the same aperture is set at ISO 200. Then the second camera will have 200 ants which means it will collect more light than the first camera. Automatically the results of the second camera will be clearer than the first camera.

Here is a collection of some of the importance of ISO in photography:

1. When to Use ISO
High ISO is usually used when conditions are low light, for example when shooting at night or indoor. When is the right time to use ISO on the camera? the right moment is when the combination of 2 parts of the triangle shutter speed and Aperture exposure has not received the right exposure or light.

High ISO And Low ISO Test Shot

High ISO And Low ISO Test Shot (

At such conditions you can increase the ISO value until you get enough light and get the ideal shutter speed. Suppose that on one occasion you want to capture a moving moment in a low-light room. It’s ideal to capture fast moments using high shutter speeds.

2. How to ISO Digital Camera Settings
Besides AUTO, ISO unit values ​​on the camera are marked with values ​​starting with numbers 50/100, 200, 400, 800, 1600 and so on according to camera specifications. On professional DSLR cameras, ISO Nikon D600 for example is able to reach ISOs up to a value of 25000.

DSLR Cameras ISO Nikon D600

DSLR Cameras ISO Nikon D600 (

Besides being able to increase the sensitivity of the light obtained, ISO can also cause noise (small spots on the photo) on the results of the photo. But for digital cameras in the current era of technological development, high ISO is not an obstacle. D3 with ISO 25600 still get photos with low noise.

3. Effect of Increasing the ISO Value

Effect Of Increasing The ISO Value

Effect Of Increasing The ISO Value (

Raising ISO is often done by photographers when shooting in low light conditions, the goal is to still get a reasonable Shutter Speed ​​so as to minimize the results of images that shake or blur. But there are side effects when the ISO is raised, the image quality decreases and noise or spots appear on the photo.

4. Tips for taking pictures using ISO
In photography many recommend using the smallest ISO possible. To avoid noise and get sharp photos. Especially if you print large photos, a small ISO is a must. However, in some cases, noise is sometimes needed to add a more dramatic photo impression, for example BW photos.

With the continued development of technology, high-end cameras now offer improvements in rendering images using high ISO so that the results obtained still look good. In addition, the ability of software rendering to eliminate noise has also increased. For example you can use Adobe Photoshop to reduce noise.

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