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I have a Samsung S1050 compact camera. On the Auto shooting option, these are three options for the flash:

  • Auto & Red eye reduction
  • Auto flash
  • Flash off

The camera defaults to "Auto & Red Eye reduction" each time it is switched on.

When taking photos where no eyes are present (say a photo of a tree or building), is it best practice to remember to switch to "Auto flash", or is it okay to use just "Auto & Red eye reduction" every time regardless?

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The "Red Eye Reduction" flash setting causes several bright flashes before the photo is taken, with the intention of closing the pupils of people in the photo, reducing the chance of reflection from their retina, which causes the red eye problem. When there is nobody looking at that flash, that effect doesn't happen. It won't hurt the photo, but it wastes time.

Personally, on my Samsung phone, I leave the flash deactivated. That should be your default - only use it if it's really needed. This may be a personal thing though - I hate flash photos so much that if I really need to use it, I often just don't take that photo.

  • With my camera, it defaults to "Auto & Red eye reduction" each time it is turned on, and there does not appear to be any way to change this. I find sometimes the flash is necessary (especially when indoors), otherwise the image is not as sharp and is slightly blurry. – Goto10 Sep 19 '14 at 17:35
  • You are correct, sometimes it's impossible to get the shot without the flash. It's strange that it defaults to that though, it's the most complicated auto setting. Strange that it doesn't keep the setting you had it on last time too. – Jasmine Sep 22 '14 at 17:47
  • Oh I see what's going on - when you turn the camera on, it goes to whatever mode is selected on the dial. Switch it to M, A, or P and I bet you'll see different defaults after power-up. – Jasmine Sep 22 '14 at 17:53
  • Yes, the other modes do give different flash defaults. However, I prefer to use the Auto mode (or sometimes the Scene mode) as they don't require some other parameters to be set manually, like the focus. – Goto10 Oct 13 '14 at 18:06
  • Sure, the auto modes are very convenient, but the other modes are provided for situations when the auto mode isn't working. You've identified at least one of those situations, so you need to work the device accordingly. – Jasmine Oct 13 '14 at 19:10

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