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Arsenal 1 Getting Started with Manual Mode
Arsenal 1 Getting Started with Manual Mode

How to use Arsenal's manual shooting screen

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Written by Arsenal
Updated over a week ago

Arsenal’s Manual Mode gives you complete control over the settings for your shot. If you are new to manual photography, we recommend starting with Smart Mode.

Note: Shooting in Manual Mode works best with a tripod or other stable surface. For handheld shooting, read Getting Started with Handheld Mode.

Get ready to shoot with Arsenal

Before shooting, always make sure that:

  • Camera is powered on

  • Arsenal is powered on

  • Camera is connected via USB cable to Arsenal’s left port (unless you are using a Sony camera that connects via WiFi)

  • Camera is set to “Manual” mode

Switch to the Manual screen

Open the Arsenal app and swipe the mode slider at the very bottom of the screen to Manual. You can also swipe on the Live View image to change modes as well.

If you prefer to shoot in Aperture Priority or Shutter Priority you can adjust your camera’s mode by tapping the current mode (usually “M” by default) on the right side of the screen. Note: Some cameras you have to manually change the camera dial.

Compose Your Shot

Once your mode is selected, adjust your settings for exposure compensation, shutter speed, aperture, and ISO.

To change a setting, tap the default value (e.g. S 1/50 for shutter speed) to view the manual setting dial. Slide the dial left or right to choose your preferred setting.

Arsenal will adjust your camera as you change settings. On most cameras, you’ll see an accurate preview in Live View and on the live histogram. (Unfortunately, a few camera models auto-balance the live preview. In this case, take a test shot to see the true exposure.)

Tap to Focus

To select a focus point, simply tap on the Live View image. A target will show the point you selected, and turn green once focused.
To switch focus modes, tap the square focus icon in the upper right corner.

Trigger the Shutter

Press the shutter release button at the bottom of the screen to take a photo. Arsenal will trigger your camera’s shutter from up to 100 feet away.

Adjust advanced settings

To access advanced settings, click on the "Auto" icon in the lower left hand corner of the app. This will bring you into the menu to select, Exposure Bracketing, Focus Stacking, Long Exposure Stacking, and Off.

  • Exposure bracketing: Take multiple shots at different exposures and merge them to capture High Dynamic Range (HDR)

  • Focus stacking: Take multiple shots at different focus positions and merge them to increase sharpness and depth of field

  • Long exposure stacking: Take multiple shots and average the pixels to create a longer exposure

To access additional settings, tap the gear icon in the upper left. Here you can access a wide variety of tools.

  • Time Delay: Delay the trigger by a fixed amount of time

  • Grid: Show a grid for the Rule of Thirds or Golden Ratio to assist composition

  • Focus peaking: Highlight areas of the scene that will be in-focus

  • Zebra stripes: Highlight areas of the scene that are overexposed

  • Refocus before shot: Refocuses the lens on your selected focus point(s) each time a photo is taken

  • Arsenal Placement: Arsenal works best when mounted on your camera’s hot shoe

  • Mounted on camera: Enables Vibration detection, Live View, Orientation Rotation, and the option to review photos in handheld mode

  • Handheld photo review gesture: Tip your camera down to review photos on the back of your camera. Cameras disable their screen while Arsenal is managing settings. The photo review gesture pauses updates to allow review.

  • Mirror Lockup: Reduce vibrations caused by raising the mirror.

  • Enable LEDs: Turns Arsenal LED light indicators on/off

Note: Grid, focus peaking, and zebra stripes are currently available for iOS only. Android support will be added in a future software update.

Learn more
Check out our other Getting Started articles:

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