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I have ILCE-7m3 camera. I operate it in manual mode (M) and fixed ISO (except auto focus (AF)) and target file format is RAW.

Recently I discovered Picture Profile tab in camera settings. By default it is turned off. Once Picture Profile is activated by selecting one - a few Drive Modes for expanding dynamic range (DR) are grayed out:

  • Cont Bracket
  • Single Bracket

I am puzzled with this limitation.

Cont/Single Bracket is just a macro scenario for shooting a series of photos, with different exposure, automatically.

I can shoot all of them manually.

Another follow up question is what gamma is used when Picture Profile is off?

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2 Answers 2

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The picture profiles aren't what is preventing you from using bracketing. It is the fact that you are using manual mode and fixed ISO. You have essentially locked down every possible means for the camera to adjust exposure, and then are wondering why the camera will not adjust exposure. When in manual mode (locking down shutter speed and aperture), the only other way for the camera to adjust exposure is to adjust the ISO. But it can only do this if you have ISO set to "Auto." If you tell the camera that you want to use a specific ISO, then the camera believes that you know what you want.

Now, if you are setting the ISO to a specific value because you want to control the "central" exposure value to start with for bracketing (thinking the camera will adjust around that specific ISO value), then what you should do is use the exposure compensation instead. Set the ISO to "Auto." Set up the bracketing the way you want. Set your shutter and aperture to what you want in manual mode. Then use the Exposure Compensation Dial (or the setting in the menu if you need more than 3 stops of exposure compensation) till the camera "chooses" the ISO that you want to start with. Now take your picture. Because you have told the camera that you are "flexible" as to the final ISO value, it knows it can adjust it to achieve the bracketing you asked for.

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The picture profiles are intended for recording video; it would be very odd to bracket frames in the middle of a video. So while you can use the picture profiles for still images; it's assumed the camera will be being used for video at least some of the time, and those modes are disabled.

A raw file does not use a gamma profile perse. A gamma curve is applied during the demosaicing (display) process, but it can be changed w/o affecting the original raw data. Typically, raw files are displayed with a 2.2 gamma curve applied. E.g. Lightroom's Melissa color space, used for displaying/editing images, is ProPhoto with 2.2 gamma.

If you are recording jpeg images w/ the picture profiles disabled they are recorded w/ gamma 2.2.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I use picture profiles for still images all the time. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 9, 2022 at 15:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ @BobMacaroniMcStevens, on Sonys the picture profile (movies) is different from the creative style (stills)... helpguide.sony.net/ilc/1720/v1/en/contents/TP0001661955.html \$\endgroup\$ Dec 9, 2022 at 17:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ The OP describes using the camera for stills. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 9, 2022 at 18:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @StevenKersting doesn't mean people wouldn't want to use the "movie" picture profiles for still film simulations, given they offer more detailed settings than creative styles. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 9, 2022 at 19:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @rackandboneman, that's fine; but that is still the reason why exposure (DR) bracketing is disabled when a picture profile is selected... It is assumed the camera will be being used for shooting movies as that is what the picture profiles are designed/intended for. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 9, 2022 at 21:39

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