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I'm using a Canon EOS 700D with a 50mm 1.8 prime lens. I normally preview the photo through the LCD screen before I click the photo. I recently noticed that my photos are under exposed when compared with the preview. It shows a brighter image for a small time when I halfway click the button, but the actual image is under exposed. I tried clearing all the settings, but that didn't work. This only happens in Manual mode. Does anyone know why this happening?

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    \$\begingroup\$ When you take the photos they are not under exposed? Is it just the LCD that is under exposed or is the Viewfinder under exposed as well? \$\endgroup\$ Sep 21, 2020 at 8:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @JackSoldano Only the photos are under exposed. I can see a brighter image through LCD display when previewing prior to actually take the photo. \$\endgroup\$
    – sandaru
    Sep 21, 2020 at 14:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ Hello! I could observe the same behaviour on my Nikon D5300 - when focussing, the image gets brighter. I think that this is for the autofocus to work better; you probably don't actually see an exposure preview. \$\endgroup\$
    – jng224
    Sep 22, 2020 at 7:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Jonas Thank you very much \$\endgroup\$
    – sandaru
    Oct 6, 2020 at 7:41

2 Answers 2

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You probably use a small aperture. When autofocus does its work, it usually does it with wide open aperture. That's why you get a brighter image for a small time. It says nothing about the brightness of the final image. This may be different when using phased-based autofocus and contrast-based autofocus, but this depends on what the camera does.

Some cameras might have an option for a "framing" vs "preview" display either in live view or when using a through-the-lens optical viewfinder: in that case "framing" gives full brightness but less depth of field than the actual photograph may have, while "preview" corresponds in brightness and depth of field to the final result.

Looking in the manual, it would appear that you have a depth of field preview button to the upper right of the lens mount. Pressing that should reduce the brightness to the actual brightness that is going to end up in the photograph, at least when using the optical viewfinder.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ When looking from the front, the upper right button is the lock for the lens mount. The preview button is quite tiny, at the lower right. \$\endgroup\$
    – sweber
    Sep 24, 2020 at 7:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you very much. \$\endgroup\$
    – sandaru
    Oct 6, 2020 at 7:41
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You simply need to adjust you LCD brightness. Turn it down a bit and use the histogram to determine exposure instead of relying on the LCD. The LCD image is competing with ambient light for your eyes attention. Your eyes can cause the problem by not adjusting for the LCD properly. Use the histogram.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Thank you very much. \$\endgroup\$
    – sandaru
    Oct 6, 2020 at 7:40

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