What camera settings should I use to take pictures of different jewels?

After reading our article on the equipment and lenses to choose for photographing your jewellery, let's move on to the second step. You are now ready, with your DSLR camera, to photograph your jewelry in the studio. You have the studio's continuous and multi-source lighting system at your disposal, we can get started. Here are our tips for camera settings to photograph your jewelry, precious and semi-precious stones. Let's take here the example of settings made to shoot a gold ring, a sapphire, an emerald, a pearl necklace, a diamond, a topaz stone and a ruby.

photo of a ring taken with PackshotCreator photo studio

Supply

Gold ring
Precious stones
Semi precious stones

Tool

PackshotMacro DIS photo studio
PackshotCreator software
Canon EOS 5DSR
100mm macro Lens
Tripod

Duration

2 minutes
  • 1. Which mode to choose, manual or automatic?
    what camera settings to use to photograph jewelry

    In order to control the three basic camera settings, make sure you are in manual mode on the setting wheel of the camera. Then use the software interface to configure the three basic settings: ISO, aperture and shutter speed. You will get a live preview of the results of your settings via LiveView.

  • 2. Adjust your ISOs to reduce noise
    adjusting ISO on the software to shoot jewelry

    ISOs determine the sensitivity of your camera sensor to light. When equipped with a multi-source LED lighting system, choose a value between 100 and 200. This will give you a better rendering on your jewellery and gems. The lower the ISOs, the more noise you will reduce on your visual.

  • 3. Open your diaphragm wide
    choose a wider diaphragm for jewelry photography

    Choose an aperture value between 16 and 22 depending on the jewel or stone being photographed. You will benefit from a greater depth of field, better sharpness and better reproduction of details. This is because you are focusing on a smaller part of your jewel. However, the rest of the visual will be blurred. To obtain sharpness on the whole jewel, you will have to use the automatic focus stacking technique of the software (here is our tutorial dedicated to automatic focus stacking).

  • 4. Speed: find your cruising speed
    selecting a correct shutter speed for jewelry photography

    This is the speed at which your camera’s sensor is exposed to light. Adjust your shutter speed only if, after the first adjustments, your visual is under or overexposed. You can increase the shutter speed to decrease the brightness of your image, or speed it up to increase the brightness of your image.

  • 5. Use the software presets by material and stone type
    Product photo software tools

    Are you done setting up your basics? Go to your studio lighting interface. Select Variable mode, then go to the Presets drop-down menu. Then choose one of the 7 types of lighting settings already configured: Gold, Topaz, Diamond, Sapphire, Emerald, Pearl, Ruby.