With so many easy-to-use camera modes, why would anyone ever want to use anything else? After all, a point-and-shoot camera is specifically designed to do most of the work for you, and there will be plenty of times when you don’t want to ponder shutter speed, and you just want to capture a good, spur-of-the-moment photo.
However, the G12 isn’t an ordinary point-and-shoot camera. It’s specifically designed to offer more control over your shooting. Control is the number one reason for using a more advanced point-and-shoot camera. The ability to control every aspect of your photography opens up creative avenues that just aren’t available using the Automatic modes. Let’s look at what we are giving up.
- ISO: Most of the Automatic modes stick with the default Auto ISO setting, regardless of how you’ve configured the ISO speed dial. This will undoubtedly lead to unwanted digital noise in your images when the ISO begins to reach up into the higher settings.
- Prefabricated effects: When using the automatic Scene modes, most attributes for fine-tuning your images are not available; you need to accept what the camera offers or switch to a different shooting method. RAW format: Even if you plan to shoot in RAW, the automatic settings don’t allow it. In fact, the Low Light mode even knocks the image resolution down to the M setting.
- White balance: Except for the Quick Shot mode, no choice is available for white balance. You are simply stuck with the Auto setting. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but your camera doesn’t always get it right. And when you use the Automatic modes, there is just no way to change it.
- Autofocus: Some of the modes, such as the Scene modes, automatically focus on what the camera deems worthy. There is no way to change these. And if you can’t manually select a focus area, you must constantly recompose your image.
Another thing you will find when using any of the Automatic modes is that the options in the main camera menu have been reduced to just a few user-friendly choices. These aren’t the only restrictions to using the Automatic modes, but they should be enough to make you want to explore the Creative side of the dial.