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how to use Canon AE-1 (manual), basic tips.

bong fabros , Oct 15, 1998; 02:42 a.m.

i long wanted to learn how to shoot the camera. i am so much interested in photography. now that i have my own camera (Canon AE-1), i want to learn. The problem is i don't have the manual. I don't know what is the use of aperture, shutter speed, when to use the flash, etc... in simple words, i don't know how to start. can you send me some tips or a manual of the Canon AE-1, just so i can learn how to use it. thanks. bong fabros, philippines.


Jana Mullerova , Oct 15, 1998; 04:01 a.m.

As you say, you need to learn about appreture and shutter speed. You need to learn the meaning of light for photography. Your camera just records light on film. The picture you get depends on how light is recorded: how wide is the lens opened (that's apreture) and for how long (that's shutter speed). Have a look at:



or try to get a book for beginners, e.g. the Kodak Photoguide. Once you have understood the role of light, appreture, shutter speed and exposure values, you can go further and learn about flash or whatever you like. By then you will know enough to decide what to learn.

Your camera will make learning a bit difficult for you, because it will not allow you to set manually both exposure and shutter speed. It would be better for you to have a fully manual camera to learn. Perhaps you could borrow one?

Jana Mullerova , Oct 15, 1998; 04:45 a.m.

... Oops, correction: The camera won't allow you to set manuallu both *appreture* and shutter speed. Exposure is what you get by combining bothe these.

Julia -- , Oct 15, 1998; 01:17 p.m.

The AE-1 camera is a capable of setting BOTH aperture and shutter speed. I own 2; and 3 other canon cameras besides... If you have access to "Magic Lantern Camera Manuals", they are complete user guides for cameras. They have one called "Canon Classic Cameras" that has much greater detail than the camera's instructions manual and the correct operation of all the camera functions with additional picture taking advice. You can mail order one from "adoramacamera.com".($19.95usa) Jana was wrong about that, but all her other advice was great! Good luck with learning the basics of photography! Julia

Brad Hutcheson , Oct 15, 1998; 10:14 p.m.

Just to second what was already said, yes you can set both aperture and shutter speed manually on a Canon AE-1. You can also set the shutter speed, and let the camera set the aperture by placing the aperture ring in the 'A' setting. Of course you need to look at the meter to be sure you have set a speed that will give a correct exposure. The book that was mentioned will tell you how to do that. As mentioned, it is easier and more informative than the camera's own manual. The AE-1 is an excellent camera to learn with, and the old Canon FD lenses are very good lenses.

Meenakshi Krishnasamy , Jan 28, 2002; 04:12 p.m.

There is a complete on-line manual available for Canon AE-1 in this following link http://online.tlcs.com/dms/camera/


Jeffrey Osier-Mixon , Mar 10, 2002; 02:04 a.m.

Here is another link for the AE-1: (link)

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