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Thread: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

  1. #41
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    To those newbies who think that people in CS are being elitist and unfriendly, I would like to say that a lot of CSers are very friendly and helpful, and always willing to share information

    I apologize if I have not expressed myself clearly enough, and given anyone the impression that I find it wrong to ask questions.

    What I wish for is for those who ask questions to show some effort to learn, by asking more specific questions which will definitely benefit you.
    Asking a very short question like 'what settings you used?' is just plain lazy. It gives the impression that you expect to be spoon-fed.

  2. #42

    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by swhyge View Post
    Now that we can remove the triangular sign from our car, we start calling the L drivers kayu?
    no, but you can always call the person who manages to stall their car on the slope part of the test 8 times in a row kayu..

    or the one who fails 8 times in a row kayu.

    you get the idea

  3. #43

    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    I notice this a lot in CS. Someone puts up a photo in the galleries, and sooner or later (usually several posts down), someone asks "What settings you used?".

    I'm not really sure what the benefit of that information is. Photography is very time and location-specific. Knowing that someone used f11,1/200s, ISO200 and auto WB for a particular shot isn't really going to teach me much. Far better to experiment on my own, especially with digital camera (ie instant results).

    i dunno.... maybe you guys can share your opinions...
    Useful if you're starting to know photography.

  4. #44
    Member lennyl's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    What I wish for is for those who ask questions to show some effort to learn, by asking more specific questions which will definitely benefit you.
    Asking a very short question like 'what settings you used?' is just plain lazy. It gives the impression that you expect to be spoon-fed.
    I'm kind of conflicted on this.

    On one hand, asking "what settings did you use" smacks of laziness and asking just for the sake of saying something.

    When I ask that, however, (don't recall ever having asked it here, FWIW, but I can see myself asking) I'd like to figure out for myself why those settings are used, rather than having the person tell me.

    On the other hand, asking "what settings did you use? And why did you use the settings" really seems like asking to be spoon fed.

    I guess it'll be good to ask in a way that shows you can benefit from the question, like "I love that depth of field - what settings did you use to achieve that?"

    Or "How did you manage to frame that shot from where you're shooting? What equipment did you use?"

    I have a nagging suspicion that some people post such questions not because they want to know but just to get their post counter up. Many images come with EXIF embedded, figuring out how to display the EXIF is not hard (heck, I even gave instructions for FireFox users).

  5. #45
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Some like me dun...

    I remove all EXIF information on my pictures...
    Michael Lim
    My Flickr Site

  6. #46
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    hahah well i think expecting a newbie to be able to extract EXIF information, though seemingly quite straight-forward, might be asking a little too much.
    Somewhere in between expecting to be spoon-fed and being a totally independent learner la...

    I remember my science teacher in secondary school always scolded us for asking simple quesstions, instead of showing some effort to find out more, and only ask a question as some form of clarification on certain points.
    This was my educational background, which might explain my thought process.

  7. #47

    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    such questions are nothing more like 刻舟求剑, but at least is able to tell you that the sword is drop in the water from the boat.



    to those don't understand Chinese idiom, it says a man drop his sword from the boat while crossing a river, so he immediately make a marking on the boat, others saw it, asking him why? the man replied when the boat reach the shore, he able to retrieve his sword from the water where the marking is......

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    this question is valid, since a newbie may not know what is the workable set up for certain type of shoot..

    I'm afraid I'm with Lennyl on this issue, even though there isn't a completely right or wrong answer. I might concede that there might be people who ask this question to just plug into their camera in hopes of achieving the same result. Now that would be a failure of the learning process, because conditions change and you need to know the science behind the settings.

    On the other hand, if it is asked to understand the reason why the photo comes out in a specific way, then why not? I stumbled on a website a couple of months ago, where the [landscape] photographer had his settings written out, and explaining why he was using such small apertures, and such long exposures, to achieve the desired result. And if a workable setup is a valid question, why isn't photo-settings? That, technically, is a workable setup too - because some lenses might be limited in functionality, or, more importantly, it provides a general direction or idea of how to achieve a similar result, not a carbon copy.

    For your Chinese Idiom, there is another one: Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.

    It provides a starting point - and that's what it is. There is no harm asking, if it is used constructively. Learning is a two-way process, and maybe sometimes "just go out there and experiment" isn't the most constructive lesson.

  8. #48
    Member lennyl's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by zac08 View Post
    I remove all EXIF information on my pictures...
    I can see why some would remove, say, camera serial # and owner name before posting online, but all EXIF? Is it because it is easier to remove all than just some? And is it only for photos you post online or literally all your photos?

    If you use Lightroom, I came across Metadata Wrangler the other day, looks interesting.

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    hahah well i think expecting a newbie to be able to extract EXIF information, though seemingly quite straight-forward, might be asking a little too much.
    Hmm.. candidate for a sticky?

    Quote Originally Posted by nabilmust View Post
    I'm afraid I'm with Lennyl on this issue
    Don't be afraid

    I'm glad a few people agree with me though. I was surprised by the number of people who thinks the shooting data is useless. Actually, before this thread, it never even crossed my mind that someone would try to clone the exact settings in order to reproduce the kind of image he saw. I accept that it can happen - I don't think it happens all that often though.

  9. #49
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    I can understand the question on settings such as focal length, aperture, shutter, iso ... as it may provide some benefit to a newbie. However i get totally stumped by some CS'er obsession on question on what equipment as in what camera, and lens was used

  10. #50
    Senior Member denniskee's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    i feel it is perfectly ok for newbies to ask this question.

    starting, can learn from books, attend courses, ask friend to teach. trying to reproduce the photos that were taken locally does help (since books always show photos shot oversea).

    so if a newbie sees a photo of merlion taken in the evening light, fullerton hotel nicely exposed against the blue sky around 4pm, some candid shots of friends fooling around in kopitiam, or shots taken during the recent night festival. after asking "what setting you used", they can go the next day to try reproducing the beautiful images they had seen posted here in cs. this is also a way to learn.

    ya, ambient lighting / wheather can change the next day they go and try to reproduce the results, thats where the knowledge aquired from books comes in.

    tell me, how many of you never try to reproduce the beatiful photos you have seen posted here? maybe you are more learnt, so dont need to ask "what setting you used", but dont you think it is similar learning process, except newbies need abit more help.
    photography makes one sees things from all angles.

  11. #51
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Guess what? The best setting is Auto setting.

    For a beginner, the Auto setting is the best setting.

    Auto focus

    Auto exposure

    Matrix metering

    Auto WB

    Auto ISO

    Scenes modes for portraits, sports, night scene, sunset, etc.....

    Camera designers are definitely smarter than beginners or learners who ask that kind of question.

    Auto is the Best.
    Do not be afraid [of ghost and bullies] Shoot them......

  12. #52
    Member lennyl's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by msvanjara View Post
    I can understand the question on settings such as focal length, aperture, shutter, iso ... as it may provide some benefit to a newbie. However i get totally stumped by some CS'er obsession on question on what equipment as in what camera, and lens was used
    ISO setting and focal length (as it applies to FOV) varies with different cameras. Also, different lenses perform differently (though this is often hard to tell with the small photos posted). And there are always special equipment - macro lenses, close up filters, tilt shift lenses. At the very least, it tells me what a certain equipment combo is capable of in the right hands.

  13. #53

    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    I think it is valid for both newbies to learn and experienced ones to question both the settings and the set up. Forums are meant for people to share their knowledge and learn from each other, what is wrong with knowing the settings in order to have a gauge of how the photographer took it and why he set it in such a way?

    There must be a reason why photography books, magazines print the picture's setting at the bottom most of the time. It is a good reference guide; i think knowing aperture, shutter speed and ISO helps me to gauge why a better photographer chose this and if not, to see if the photographer chose those settings or simply 'P' mode it. In addition, most photographs once edited will no longer have these info.

    I just thought learning never stops whichever level you may be at. On the other hand, it's also a debate of if one should let technology take over in 'P' mode or having that satisfaction of 'controlling' your gear.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by FusionMist; 5th August 2008 at 04:00 PM.

  14. #54

    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    I've never asked the question, but I do find myself wondering for some photos - I usually just view the Exif data. I don't see what's wrong with doing so, different people learn differently, and I think for newbies it is a good way to see what can be done with even a basic kit lens - no need for fancy L or 1.2f lens.

  15. #55
    Member terryansimon's Avatar
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    Default Re: what's the reason to ask "what settings you used?" ?

    I liken such questions to learning methodologies.

    to me, I learn by reading the lecture notes and summarising them up into digestible parts. others however would learn by re-writing everything on a piece of paper. and yet others learn from just merely looking at the notes. and some would depend on the luck of the draw when the exams come around.

    likewise for asking for settings. some people are more hands on in their approach and would go experiment till the cows come home till they land the prized picture. others would require a bit of help to show them the right way in which to head. and yet others would expect a perfect replication with the settings that they've obtained from a person whose photo they truly admire.

    ultimately, in my humble opinion, there isn't a right or wrong answer to this question, neither is there a one size fits all solution. I just take it as a compliment when somebody asks me about my settings.

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