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Canon AE-1 Program auto mode not working

Sabrinad
Contributor

Hi there, 

I’m a complete newbie with film photography. I have the Canon AE-1 program that my grandpa gave me a few years ago. At the time I just played with the manual settings not even realizing there’s an “auto mode” on the Program. I really want to experiment with the auto mode while I’m learning the ins and outs of film. When I switch over to “A” on the aperture, and “Program” on the wheel I thought the viewfinder was supposed to display “A” when the button was held half down. I’m still getting “M” for manual and the light meter is popping up. 
Any suggestions on how to fix this? I hope my question made sense, like I said I’m a complete novice and I’m still learning the technicalities. 

11 REPLIES 11

jrhoffman75
Legend
Legend

CANON AE-1 PROGRAM INSTRUCTIONS MANUAL Pdf Download | ManualsLib

John Hoffman
Conway, NH

1D X Mark III, M200, Many lenses, Pixma PRO-100, Pixma TR8620a, Lr Classic

Hm, I’ve looked through the manual and followed the instructions and didn’t have any luck. 

normadel
Authority
Authority

I've been an AE-1 Program user for 42 years, and I am confused by what you are saying. 

There isn't an "Auto mode on the Program". The full auto mode IS Program Mode. When the aperture ring is on "A" and the shutter speed dial is on "Program", that's full Auto. The camera selects aperture and shutter speed.

A source for the actual manual  can be found here:  https://www.butkus.org/chinon/

I urge you to read it from the beginning. It tells you all about getting started, and using Program, Shutter-Priority and Manual modes.

 

My mistake for typing it wrong. I was just trying to differentiate that it is the Ae-1 Program and not the regular AE-1. 
I HAVE my aperture ring on “A” and shutter speed on “Program”, I followed the instructions. The view finder is still displaying that I’m in manual mode, that’s my problem. I read through the manual and followed the instructions and I’m still having issues, hence why I asked here. 

normadel
Authority
Authority

An AE-1 Program has the word "Program" in green under AE-1 on front of camera. And "Program" on shutter dial. Plain AE-1 has neither.

What lens do you have on the camera?

With aperture on "A" and speed dial on "Program", there should be "P" in viewfinder, not "M". Do you have another Canon FD lens to try?

IMG_1937.jpeg

 Thanks for replying! Yes it’s definitely the Program. Here is how I have it setup. From what I’m seeing this means the camera is in Program mode. But the viewfinder is showing “M” still. Unfortunately I don’t have another lense. Maybe I’ll purchase one and try switching them out. 

normadel
Authority
Authority

Jiggle the shutter dial a little without moving it off Program, to see if you can get it to show "P" in the viewfinder. There's definitely something wrong if it show "M" as you have it set. I've never seen this with two AE-1Ps.

pkistutus1
Apprentice

Hi, have the same issue with just purchased Canon AE1 Program. I’m also a newbie, did you figured what was the problem? I’ll contact a shop I’ve bought my camera from (Kamerastore) to ask them if they can fix it.

Yes I did finally! It was the lense. A friend lent me his 35mm lense and it fixed the problem. Hope that helps you! 

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