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What Does ISO Stand For?

What Does ISO Stand For?

What Exactly Is ISO?

ISO is the measurement of how responsive your camera is to light. ISO rating, shutter speed, and aperture setting are the three musketeers that can turn an ordinary photograph into a phenomenal one. The ISO rating ranges from 25 to 6400 (or more), that indicates specific light sensitivity. The lower the number, the less sensitive to light the film stock is and vice versa. In short, you can set your ISO rating to a minimum when you’re working with bright lights but when you’re faced with low light conditions, its best to have higher ISO rating. This whole phenomenon depends upon the grain of salt. Lower ISO rating creates a much smoother and cleaner image, contrary to that a higher ISO has larger, jagged grains of salt, thus creating a much rougher image thereby producing more digital noise.

Back in the old filming days when technology hasn’t seen its best, the filmmakers had to work with the same ISO setting for the whole film which made working with different light conditions challenging. But such is not the case now; today’s revolutionary technological advancements offer us a changeable ISO rating even on our Smartphone. This has paved the way for budding photographers to make a name for themselves in the relative field. That is one sole reason why you can see social media sites flooded with photographers, each better than the next and they portray their skills through innovative use of ISO rating that helps them turn the lighting odds in their favor.

How to Choose the Best ISO Setting?

ISO is the most important setting when creating an aesthetically appealing photograph. Unlike shutter speed and aperture setting, ISO has no direct creative impact on your photograph. Yet, choosing the wrong ISO setting can either make or break your chances of a flawless and smooth image. Choosing the best required said setting depends on the light exposure. If you’re working on a beautiful sunny day, then it is advised to choose a lower ISO rating from a 100 to 200 maximum. This way your image will turn out to be just perfect. Lower ISO images will be more color-accurate and more aesthetically captivating. On the contrary, indoor photos have a lot less light and if you’re not using flash on your camera then we suggest you turn the ISO rating up a notch till probably 800 depending upon the type of camera you have but remember increasing the ISO rating can affect your image in two ways; you will lose the fine details in your picture and when you enlarge the image and make digital prints, or when you save the image as a jpeg, the inherent high level of digital noise will result in a “muddier” image after conversion.

Why Avoid Auto ISO Setting?

A lot of Smartphone these days allow you to either opt for an automatic ISO setting or go for a manual ISO rating which you can set as per requirement. If you’re a newbie and do not understand the workings of ISO rating then we suggest you stick to the automatic setting for sure but remember that there may be noise factor involved in your photos every now and then. If you set your ISO to Auto as you adjust your aperture and/or shutter speed settings, the ISO will modify itself to make an exposure the camera finds appropriate. But you will still notice ISO noise more in smaller sensor cameras, like small point and shoots. A full-frame DSLR camera hardly has any noise at high ISO levels. But remember that noise is not always a factor of the sensor size. It has to do with the sensor quality too!

How Does ISO Help in Creating a Phenomenal Vlog?

Vlog is the new toy in the playground that is slowly gathering fame. With so many social platforms out there, you can see the internet flooded with vloggers. It is basically a mode of interacting with a large audience and connects with them on a personal level. With the increased competition, it has become difficult for video bloggers to stand apart from the crowd. This can be easily rectified by publicizing quality content that will automatically attract a large number of followers/ subscribers. Your content should be packed with favorable information and entertainment. Apart from the quality content, there are other factors that contribute to making a fantastic video blog, one of which is high definition video.

If everything about your blog is spot on but the picture quality of it is pathetic then the users will take only a few seconds to switch to something else. To improve the quality of your video, you have to understand how to work. ISO is an important aspect of digital photography to have an understanding of if you want to gain more control of your digital camera. Experiment with different settings and how they impact your images today. Particularly learn more about Aperture and Shutter Speed which with ISO are a part of the Exposure Triangle. If you want to go for blur background using a wide aperture setting when the light is bright then you need to adjust your ISO rating to a low setting get that soft background. Alternatively, if you want to create an image where everything in your composition is in sharp focus, it is best to choose a higher ISO, especially when the light is not so bright. Similarly, you can incorporate motion blurring tricks to your video by adjusting both shutter speed and ISO setting on your camera or camcorder.

Takeaway Points

  • The image sensor’s light sensitivity commonly known as ISO is important when acquiring and crafting any digital photographic image.
  • When the ISO setting is low, the sensor is less responsive to light therefore; it requires more light to create a well-exposed photograph.
  • Higher ISO setting means your camera’s sensor is more responsive to light, so it needs less light to reach the sensor to create a well-exposed photograph.
  • Adverse lighting conditions such as low light or high contrast lighting may turn up the ISO rating up to a notch but the consequences are dire because it compromises your image quality and creates noise in your photograph.