As I was editing some old picture, I accidentally landed on the “Tethered capture” menu in Lightroom. This got me curious and I stared experimenting with it. This write-up is about how to setup and shoot tethered with Lightroom.
What is tethered shooting?
Well, it is connecting your favorite PC ( and Photo Editing Program/Lightroom ) to the camera and take pictures. The pictures gets automatically imported into your workspace and can be instantly edited. The bigger benefit, in my opinion, is to see the photo in a 15″ screen instead of the 3″ LCD screen of you camera. You get to spot edit your settings/readings and adjust as needed.
Canon does offer a wireless file transmitter (Canon WFT-E5A Wireless File Transmitter) that will allow you to wirelessly-tether ( should be an oxymoron, if I paid attention to my English lecture ) but I find it pretty pricey for my purposes.
Only some cameras are compatible for tethering with Lightroom. Check the compatibility here.
Step by Step guide for tethered shooting with Lightroom
1 Connect the camera to the PC/Mac using the USB connector that ships with your canon.
Launch Lightroom and select File->Start Tethered Capture…
3Lightroom will present a preset dialog where you can specify the defaults: file name pattern, file location, keywords etc. This is extremely useful when you are doing long shoots. Things get tagged and put in right location for you. Makes it easy to find and edit later.
After this you should get into the tethered shooting mode. Lightroom will detect the camera exposure settings and will provide you with a circular button to shoot. One drawback that I noticed was that the metering settings were “readonly” from the lightroom interface. Found 2 minor inconveniences with this feature.
- For any changes to settings you had to hit the camera. The “tethered” shooting utility that ships with the camera does allow making changes. So I’m guessing this is a minor oversight on the part of the Lightroom development team. If someone finds a setting that enables this in Lightroom, feel free to post a comment.
- There is no live-view window. You have to go to camera for this as well.
Press circular shutter release and go about shooting.
5 The studio setup looked liked this. A very simple single key light/tripod/portable studio combo.
Here is the final image taken using a tethered capture