Nikon D7000, The ISO Sensitivity Auto Control Trick

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There is a very cool trick that can get you the best of both worlds and that won’t sacrifice your shutter speed or aperture. With the ISO Sensitivity auto control feature, you can set the camera to automatically select an ISO that keeps you at your preferred shutter speed, while using the largest aperture and lowest ISO possible. It will also put an upper limit on the ISO to keep you from getting too much noise in your images.

Here’s the way it works. If I am shooting an activity that requires a shutter speed of 1/250 of a second, I set that as the minimum in the auto control settings. Then I decide that I can deal with the noise that is produced with an ISO up to 1600, so I set that as my maximum sensitivity. Since I would always like to use the lowest ISO, I set the low ISO sensitivity to 200. Once everything is set, the camera will now adjust my ISO without any interaction from me, letting me shoot at my desired shutter speed at the lowest possible ISO and largest aperture setting possible.

Setting up the ISO Sensitivity auto control feature

Setting up the ISO Sensitivity auto control feature

  1. Press the Menu button and then use the Multi-selector to get to the Shooting menu.
  2. Press the Multi-selector to the right to enter the menu and then locate the ISO Sensitivity Settings feature (A).
  3. Press the Multi-selector to the right to enter the setup screen.
  4. Press the Multi-selector to the right and select the lowest ISO that you wish to use (ISO Sensitivity) and press the OK button (B).
  5. Press the Multi-selector down to highlight Auto ISO Sensitivity Control and then move the selector to the right and select On to activate the feature (C).

    Multi-selector down to highlight Auto ISO Sensitivity Control

  6. Use the Multi-selector to choose Maximum Sensitivity (D). This will be the upper limit of your ISO.
  7. Finally, select the Minimum shutter speed that you want to use while shooting (E). This will be completely dependent on the speed necessary to stop the action you are shooting.

Minimum shutter speed

With everything set up, you can begin shooting without fear of constantly having to change the ISO. This technique is also quite helpful when working in varying light conditions. As you are shooting, you will notice the ISO Auto warning in the lower portion of the viewfinder along with the adjusted ISO setting.


  1. I have a D7000 and am a diehard manual user. I rarely if ever take the ISO off 100. I’ve had the camera for a short time, but I’m thinking I’m not getting as much out if the camera as I could. I had D70 prior to the D7000. In what mode would you use this setup? What about choosing minimum speed if you’re using a zoom lens? I shoot mostly travel and nature not action, so maybe this wouldn’t be practical for me, but it sounds interesting. I decided on the D7000 for its mirror lockup and multiple exposure features, but now that I’ve slowed down I see that there’s a lot more to the camera. I might as well at least try them.

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