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Images always over exposed in "Auto"

Drbrown
Contributor

I am a new 80D user and this is the first Canon I have owned. I know how to use "manual" mode (i always have to stop it down three stops to get a decent picture). When I use "Auto" mode the images are extremely over exposed. This means I cannot give the camera to someone else that is not familiar with it to take a picture. Are all Canon cameras like this or is mine defective? It does not matter which of my three lenses I use. I have a Canon ESF 18-55mm kit lens, a Canon ESF 55-250mm and a Rokinon 8mm Fish eye. All of these lenses produce a very over exposed image. I have tried using different number of focus points to no avail. Any help would be much appreciated.

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

TCampbell
Elite
Elite

Full auto mode (the green box) locks out many changes that would be permitted in other modes... one of which is exposure compensation.  If you had dialed in exposure compensation in another mode, it would be ignored when you switch to auto mode.

 

I do not own an 80D but I have compared the reflected meter readings with my various Canon bodies against what my dedicated Sekonic meter reads and have found them to all be very accurate.

 

1 photographic stop represents a doubling or halving of the amount of light.  If you have to dial the exposusre down by 3 stops, then that means you have to dial it down to 1/2 of 1/2 of 1/2 (or 1/8th) of the exposure that the camera wants to use.  That's a huge difference.

 

You can test the camera on a bright sunny day. 

 

In mid-day sunshine, the sun pumps out a very reliable amount of light.  A correct exposure for the Sun based on the "Sunny 16" rule says that that IF (and only if) you use f/16, then the shutter speed should be the INVERSE of the ISO setting.

 

In other words if you use manual exposure, set your aperture to f/16, set your ISO to 100, then the shutter speed should be 1/100th sec.  And in doing that... if you "meter" the scene with those settings dialed in, the built-in meter should show the digital needle near the center point.

 

CAVEAT:  Keep in mind this is a "reflected" light meter.  If you point the camera at a scene which is dominated by darks, the meter will read less light being reflected (because darks don't reflect as much) and the camera may indicate an under-exposure to encourage you to boost the exposure a bit.  Conversely if you point the camera at a scene dominated by light colors, the opposite can happen.  In other words, if the camera metering differs by a small amount (maybe a 1/3 of a stop) then I wouldn't worry too much.  But if it differs by 3 stops (which is what you are saying seems to be happening) then that's a defect and needs to be addressed.

 

 

 

There are a few other issues you could check but I think are unlikely... I had wondered if the aperutre blades on your lens were stopping down as they should.  You can dial in a high f-stop value then look at the front of your lens and press your depth-of-field preview button and make sure you see the aperture blades constrict.

 

You aren't using any filters on the front of the lens?  I can only imagine that would result in the camera under-exposing but you are saying it is over-exposing so I doubt it's that.

 

Are you using "Evaluative" metering or some other mode such as "Spot" or "Center weighted", etc.?

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

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13 REPLIES 13

jr8
Contributor

What metering mode are you using?  Also, in "Auto' mode, what is your Exposure Compensation setting?  Does this happen with or without flash?  The touch screen can play havoc in your settings: while looking through the viewfinder, if your face brushes against the screen, it could change the Exposure compensation, ISO, etc settings.  Check that too.  Happened to me once.

Thanks I will have a look.

diverhank
Authority

What do you mean by Auto? The Green Square? 

I'd reset the camera back to factory default and try again. 

 

It sounds to me that Exposure Compensation has been inadvertently increased a couple of stops in a certain mode(s).  The camera will remember the setting until you change it unless you reset it back to default.

================================================
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StanNH
Rising Star
It sounds like your exposure compensation is not set to zero. It's a simple adjustment and easy to check in the display.


@Drbrown wrote:

I am a new 80D user and this is the first Canon I have owned. I know how to use "manual" mode (i always have to stop it down three stops to get a decent picture). When I use "Auto" mode the images are extremely over exposed. This means I cannot give the camera to someone else that is not familiar with it to take a picture. Are all Canon cameras like this or is mine defective? It does not matter which of my three lenses I use. I have a Canon ESF 18-55mm kit lens, a Canon ESF 55-250mm and a Rokinon 8mm Fish eye. All of these lenses produce a very over exposed image. I have tried using different number of focus points to no avail. Any help would be much appreciated.


Forget what it does in "Auto". If the metering system is three stops off in manual mode, either the camera is defective or you have something (probably exposure compensation) set very wrong.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA

Thanks a lot. I already have the exposure compensation set down two stops. From what I have read that setting does not effect the "auto" mode. I hope that is correct.

TCampbell
Elite
Elite

Full auto mode (the green box) locks out many changes that would be permitted in other modes... one of which is exposure compensation.  If you had dialed in exposure compensation in another mode, it would be ignored when you switch to auto mode.

 

I do not own an 80D but I have compared the reflected meter readings with my various Canon bodies against what my dedicated Sekonic meter reads and have found them to all be very accurate.

 

1 photographic stop represents a doubling or halving of the amount of light.  If you have to dial the exposusre down by 3 stops, then that means you have to dial it down to 1/2 of 1/2 of 1/2 (or 1/8th) of the exposure that the camera wants to use.  That's a huge difference.

 

You can test the camera on a bright sunny day. 

 

In mid-day sunshine, the sun pumps out a very reliable amount of light.  A correct exposure for the Sun based on the "Sunny 16" rule says that that IF (and only if) you use f/16, then the shutter speed should be the INVERSE of the ISO setting.

 

In other words if you use manual exposure, set your aperture to f/16, set your ISO to 100, then the shutter speed should be 1/100th sec.  And in doing that... if you "meter" the scene with those settings dialed in, the built-in meter should show the digital needle near the center point.

 

CAVEAT:  Keep in mind this is a "reflected" light meter.  If you point the camera at a scene which is dominated by darks, the meter will read less light being reflected (because darks don't reflect as much) and the camera may indicate an under-exposure to encourage you to boost the exposure a bit.  Conversely if you point the camera at a scene dominated by light colors, the opposite can happen.  In other words, if the camera metering differs by a small amount (maybe a 1/3 of a stop) then I wouldn't worry too much.  But if it differs by 3 stops (which is what you are saying seems to be happening) then that's a defect and needs to be addressed.

 

 

 

There are a few other issues you could check but I think are unlikely... I had wondered if the aperutre blades on your lens were stopping down as they should.  You can dial in a high f-stop value then look at the front of your lens and press your depth-of-field preview button and make sure you see the aperture blades constrict.

 

You aren't using any filters on the front of the lens?  I can only imagine that would result in the camera under-exposing but you are saying it is over-exposing so I doubt it's that.

 

Are you using "Evaluative" metering or some other mode such as "Spot" or "Center weighted", etc.?

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

Just as a note, I use an 80D with a variety of both Canon and non-Canon lenses.  The exposure is almost always spot on, barring any unusual lighting situations.

 

If your exposure issues are not related to the camera's exposure compensation, and persist with more than one lens, you may in fact have a problem with the camera itself.


@TCampbell wrote:

Full auto mode (the green box) locks out many changes that would be permitted in other modes... one of which is exposure compensation.  If you had dialed in exposure compensation in another mode, it would be ignored when you switch to auto mode.

 

I do not own an 80D but I have compared the reflected meter readings with my various Canon bodies against what my dedicated Sekonic meter reads and have found them to all be very accurate.

 

1 photographic stop represents a doubling or halving of the amount of light.  If you have to dial the exposusre down by 3 stops, then that means you have to dial it down to 1/2 of 1/2 of 1/2 (or 1/8th) of the exposure that the camera wants to use.  That's a huge difference.

 

You can test the camera on a bright sunny day. 

 

In mid-day sunshine, the sun pumps out a very reliable amount of light.  A correct exposure for the Sun based on the "Sunny 16" rule says that that IF (and only if) you use f/16, then the shutter speed should be the INVERSE of the ISO setting.

 

In other words if you use manual exposure, set your aperture to f/16, set your ISO to 100, then the shutter speed should be 1/100th sec.  And in doing that... if you "meter" the scene with those settings dialed in, the built-in meter should show the digital needle near the center point.

 

CAVEAT:  Keep in mind this is a "reflected" light meter.  If you point the camera at a scene which is dominated by darks, the meter will read less light being reflected (because darks don't reflect as much) and the camera may indicate an under-exposure to encourage you to boost the exposure a bit.  Conversely if you point the camera at a scene dominated by light colors, the opposite can happen.  In other words, if the camera metering differs by a small amount (maybe a 1/3 of a stop) then I wouldn't worry too much.  But if it differs by 3 stops (which is what you are saying seems to be happening) then that's a defect and needs to be addressed.

 

 

 

There are a few other issues you could check but I think are unlikely... I had wondered if the aperutre blades on your lens were stopping down as they should.  You can dial in a high f-stop value then look at the front of your lens and press your depth-of-field preview button and make sure you see the aperture blades constrict.

 

You aren't using any filters on the front of the lens?  I can only imagine that would result in the camera under-exposing but you are saying it is over-exposing so I doubt it's that.

 

Are you using "Evaluative" metering or some other mode such as "Spot" or "Center weighted", etc.?

 


I was using "Evaluative" metering. The "Sunny 16 Rule" turned out to be correct on the camera. I guess my biggest problem is that this camera is nothing like my Pentax that I used for years. I will keep experimenting with the metering. Thanks for your insight.

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