Originally Posted by Dan46
.......Auto settings are mainly used, but I also tried some "snowman looking icon" that I had in the recording settings. I don't know if that is some kind of winter setting or not. .....I have also been thinking that if I should get a UV filter to protect the lense and maybe it could even help capturing the bright white winter outdoor videos?
Auto settings work well most of the time. Winter snow scenes are not one of those times. The issue has to do with exposure and white balance.
With auto exposure the camera is trying to make it look like a "standard' picture where 18% of the light is reflected and if all the colors were mixed, would be grey. You can actually buy "18% grey cards". I used to have one so that I could get a reading with a exposure meter. That was when cameras didn't have exposure meter of any sort built in. So, when you look at your video the parts that are mostly snow are grey because that is what the camera thinks it is supposed to do. When you do the close up of the tree there is less snow. The camera thinks the colors of the tree are mixed and it is closer to the 18% grey. The snow gets whiter.
White balance is about the color of light. Sunlight is white, light bulbs are yellow and florescent tubes are blue. The camera tries to figure that out with "Auto White Balance" or "AWB". It tries to adjust the color so that when you view the footage you think the colors are "accurate". Again, most of the time the auto settings are pretty close and snow is hard. The camera is not smart enough to tell that you are pointing it at an entirely white thing and the sun is hiding behind a cloud.
To fix this, you will need to read a little bit in your manual about how to set the white balance and exposure manually. The snowman setting is an attempt at getting it better, but you can improve on that.
UV filters were invented for real film. I don't think our electronic image sensors care about UV. Many people, including me, use one anyway, but as a lens protector. If you want to play with the light using a filter, get a CPL or "circular polarizer filter" . Some use 'ND" or "neutral density" filters in the snow, especially if the sun is out. The reason is that when the world is that bright the camera has to work at extreme settings shutter speed and f-stop where results will not be optimum. An ND filter is like putting sun glasses on your camera so it doesn't have to squint so much.
Have fun with your camera. It will take great winter scenes, but you will have to help it more than in the summer. Just don't try to get a shot of a jet black crow on a sunlight snow bank!
BillEdited by bsprague - 12/17/12 at 11:31am