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On a Canon 600D, what are the best settings for a 4-8sec long exposure in the daytime? I have tried manual and shutter priority modes but photos always come out completely white.

  • I think you're asking the wrong question. What do you want to take a photo of that requires such a long exposure during daytime? I assume it's to create some sort of motion blur? – user9817 Jun 19 '14 at 8:07
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In daylight it is not possible to took such a long pose: the amount of light reaching the sensor is too important: that why your image is "burned" (overexposed full white).

What you could do to reduce the amount of light and incrasse the exposure time without burning the image is

  • lower the sensitivity (iso) as down as possible,

  • close the diafragm (pass in aperture mode and rise the f-number as much as possible

but in order to really access long poses the only way is to bought a ND filter: that is a gray filter wich will let pass only a part of the light...

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    I'd disagree with the recommendation to have the smallest aperture possible - that's going to reduce the sharpness due to diffraction, which for a lot of long exposure applications (waterfalls, etc) is exactly what you want to avoid. – Philip Kendall Jun 19 '14 at 7:34
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The exact answer will depend a bit on what you're trying to photograph, but if you're trying to do something like a long exposure shot of a waterfall or the like, in general you'll want:

  • Base ISO (i.e. ISO 100 for the 600D)
  • Aperture in the "sweet spot" for your lens - probably around f/8 to f/11 or so.
  • A neutral density filter to cut down the amount of light reaching the sensor
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The solution is to use a neutral-density filter to allow you to keep the shutter open longer in daylight without letting in so much light that it ruins the picture. There are a few other questions on this topic that you should check out:

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