Exposure compensation is used to alter exposure from the value suggested by the camera, making pictures brighter or darker. It is most effective when used with center-weighted or spot metering (0 Metering). Choose from values between –5 EV (underexposure) and +5 EV (overexposure) in increments of 1/3 EV. In general, positive values make the subject brighter while negative values make it darker.

–1 EV

No exposure compensation

+1 EV

To choose a value for exposure compensation, press the E button and rotate the main command dial until the desired value is displayed.

E button

Main command dial

±0 EV
(E button pressed)

–0.3 (–1/3) EV

+2.0 EV

At values other than ±0.0, the 0 at the center of the exposure indicators will flash (except in mode M) and a E icon will be displayed in the control panel and viewfinder after you release the E button. The current value for exposure compensation can be confirmed in the exposure indicator by pressing the E button.

Normal exposure can be restored by setting exposure compensation to ±0. Except in SCENE and EFFECTS modes, exposure compensation is not reset when the camera is turned off (in SCENE and EFFECTS modes, exposure compensation will be reset when another mode is selected or the camera is turned off).

Mode M

In mode M, exposure compensation affects only the exposure indicator; shutter speed and aperture do not change.

Flash Photography

When a flash is used, exposure compensation affects both flash level and exposure, altering the brightness of both the main subject and the background. Custom Setting e3 (Exposure comp. for flash, 0 Exposure Comp. for Flash) can be used to restrict the effects of exposure compensation to the background only.

See Also

For information on:

  • Choosing the size of the increments available for exposure compensation, see A > Custom Setting b2 (EV steps for exposure cntrl, 0 EV Steps for Exposure Cntrl).
  • Making adjustments to exposure compensation without pressing the E button, see A > Custom Setting b3 (Easy exposure compensation, 0 Easy Exposure Compensation).
  • Automatically varying exposure, flash level, white balance, or Active D-Lighting, see “Bracketing” (0 Bracketing).