Understanding Shutter Speed: What are its effects on your requirements?

shutter speed

Together with the ISO and aperture, shutter speed is an essential aspect of exposure and how well a picture is exposed. Each image is captured with the proper amount of light entering the camera according to the exposure triangle.

Shutter speed is specifically responsible for altering the brightness of your photograph and producing dramatic effects by either stopping motion or blurring it.

The camera shutter, a barrier in front of the camera sensor which remains closed until the camera shoots, is what allows for shutter speed. The shutter opens when the camera shoots, fully exposing the camera sensor to the lighting that has entered the lens. The shutter instantly closes after the sensor has finished gathering the light, preventing more light from reaching the sensor. Because it causes the shutter to open and close, the button that starts the camera is often known as the “shutter”. Every time you take a photo, the shutter moves in the same general direction, but it does not constantly move at the same speed.

However, this article can be helping you to understand, what exactly is shutter speed. And finally, how might know the shutter speed helps you take good images?

What is Shutter Speed?


The shutter speed of a camera refers to how long the shutter is left open while the camera is taking a photograph. A photograph is created by exposing a digital sensor (or a piece of film) to light. When you’re not shooting photos, the shutter simply acts as a barrier to keep light out. When the shutter is active which opens the shutter, and that time an image is captured, it might be milliseconds or minutes. The camera stops recording as the shutter shuts.

Understanding shutter speed, as one of three parameters that impact how bright or dark an image is (called exposure), is critical to gaining full creative control of the camera. If the shutter is kept open for an extended period of time, the lens will allow in a lot of light, and the image will be overly bright, or overexposed unless you are photographing a very dark situation. On the other side, if the shutter speed is too fast, the shot will be excessively dark.

Shutter speed is only one of three exposure settings; you may also widen the aperture or increase the ISO if the shot is too dark, and vice versa. The combination of shutter speed, ISO, and aperture gives you the greatest creative control over your photographs, but if you don’t know what aperture and ISO are, you can still change the shutter speed on your camera.

How to Measure Shutter Speed?

When shutter speeds are less than one second, they are commonly measured in fractions of a second. The sequences of shutter speed are listed below,

5, 2, 1,1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250, 1/500,… and so on.

A shutter speed increase or decrease of one stop will result in a doubling or halving of the overall exposure period. An exposure stop is the spacing between two shutter speed times.

Before discussing the various shutter speeds used in embedded camera photography, it is important to understand how shutter speed is calculated.

Slow Shutter Speed

A slow shutter speed will expose your sensor for a long period of time during the shooting of an image, producing a motion blur effect. Anything moving while your camera captures the photo may appear blurry in the final image since your sensor is exposed to light for a prolonged period of time.

You know blur is not necessarily a bad thing; it may convey motion and also look quite beautiful, like in this photograph:


Faster Shutter Speed

You may significantly change how the photographs look by switching the shutter speed from slow to fast. Faster shutter speeds result in a shorter amount of time when the shutter is open, which reduces the amount of time that light passes on the sensor. In order to capture movement in an image, faster shutter speeds are frequently utilized while photographing fast-moving subjects such as wildlife or sports.

With a faster shutter speed, you can also observe small items that you normally wouldn’t see with the naked eye.


Shutter Speed and Exposure Triangle

There are additional factors to take into account when creating images than shutter speed. The Exposure Triangle is made up of three settings, including shutter speed.


The lens’ opening is referred to as the aperture. An opening is created to collect the image when the shutter is activated to snap the photo. The size of the such hole is the aperture. More light enters larger spaces than smaller ones and vice versa. They are expressed as “f-stops.” The size generally doubles or cuts in half as the f-stop increases.


The digital camera sensor’s gain or amplitude in relation to light is measured by ISO. The number indicates how sensitive the sensor is to light; examples include 100, 200, 400, 800, etc. Higher values work well in gloomier surroundings. Although be aware that using a higher ISO may result in grainy photographs. This is balanced by using all three of the parameters: ISO, aperture, and shutter speed.

Shutter speed and Exposure

The brightness of an image is determined by the exposure, which is the other significant consequence of shutter speed. The camera sensor will capture a lot of light if you choose a prolonged shutter speed, making the image that captures relatively bright. A quick shutter speed limits the amount of light that the camera sensor is exposed to, making the image darker.

Shutter speed is a part of affecting the brightness of the photograph, apart from the aperture and ISO. However, shutter speed is a decision of some flexibility other than additional settings.

Shutter speed can be a crucial tool for getting the perfect amount of brightness in a photograph. You might need to utilize a rapid shutter speed on a sunny day to prevent the photograph from being overexposed. Alternatively, if it’s dark outside, a slow shutter speed could be required to prevent a photograph from becoming too dark.

Types of Shutters

Shutter technology is just one of several methods you may use to prevent light from entering the camera sensor through the aperture hole. The most common varieties of shutters are:

  • Focal plane shutters
  • Electronics shutters
  • Leaf shutters
  • Rotating disc
  • Rolling shutter
  • Global shutter

You just need to be concerned about rotating discs and electronic shutters when it comes to video. The above-described shutter speed technique is used by electronic shutters. Rotating discs have a distinct variation.

Mechanical Shutter vs Electronic Shutter

Traditionally, the shutter is a physical element that moves up and down inside the camera; however, smartphone cameras employ an electronic shutter. There is no physical barrier with electrical shutters. An electrical surge, on the other hand, instructs the sensor when to record.

Electronic shutters frequently allow cameras to shoot at even higher rates, which is why several camera makers now include both types in their models. However, the difficulty with electronic shutters is that they tend to degrade image quality by injecting additional noise, or small dots, into the image. Electronic shutters are particularly inconvenient for long exposures since they waste the camera’s battery the iPhone, for example, cannot take an exposure longer than 1/4 second.

Wrapping Up

Photographs may capture a single instant in time, but by varying the shutter speed, they may provide a feeling of movement. Fast shutter speeds freeze motion, resulting in clear photographs, whereas lower shutter speeds blur motion. You can get fine photographs of objects and slowly moving subjects by using a shutter speed of 1/250s, which is a fundamental safe shutter speed. Understanding shutter speed opens the possibility of fixing a variety of photographic problems as well as offering up new creative possibilities.

Hopefully, this post has cleared up some of your uncertainty, and you now have a better knowledge of shutter speed basics.

If you are still unclear about the settings or practice of shutter speed to result in a better objective shot, we (Vadzo) will assist you. We don’t really need you to pick the wrong device and end up fighting with it rather than working on your task. Vadzo offers auto shutter speed in an embedded camera, a feature that maintains a specified range of shutter speeds, and more unique camera solutions.

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