Is your Camera Customized to you?

November 18, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Hey Everyone! Hope everyone is doing well this week. This week is about customizing your camera to you.  If you have a modern camera there are many ways to customized your camera to the way you shoot and the way you like to have things organized. Now I can't go into specifics of every camera because they are all different but they can all be customized in some way to make , making pictures more easy.  First I will go over how I have one of my camera's set up to shoot. I wouldn't expect anyones else's camera to be like mine. Yours should be your configuration unique to you. The camera I'll tell you about is mainly used for street, product and almost anything but my landscape and wildlife stuff which I use another camera.  I only shoot prime lenses on this camera so no zooms. I have many customizable buttons on my camera and I'm guessing you do too. Lets go over those first.  My C1 button I have programed to toggle between mechanical shutter and electronic shutter. If I get in a situation where I need the quiet I can just push this button without fumbling through the menu's trying to find it.  My C2 button turns the touch screen on and off. I am a left eye dominate shooter which means my nose touches the back display and if touch screen is turned on my nose will change the focus.  This button lets me keep this feature off until I want it like doing focus stacking where I can touch where i want it to focus and snap.  My C3 button toggles between eye autofocus and animal eye focus.  This stays on people most of the time but if I come to a dog or cat I can press this button and it will focus on the animals eye.  My C4 button is to toggle between regular shooting and Super 35 ( crop sensor) mode. In this mode if I'm shooting a 35mm lens and I need a little reach real quick I can press this button and it will crop 1.5 times making this lens to shoot like a 50mm. This comes in handy while shooting street stuff when you see things and don't have time to change your lens.  As you can see these 4 buttons have been customized to how I shoot. You may have totally different things to put here that fit your style of shooting.  Doing any changing will take some reading the camera manual and googling how-to do whatever your planning to do. Don't feel bad about googling I have to do it all the time and sometimes looking at a how to video or a step by step procedure is a great help. Here are some other things to think about while customizing your camera.

Mode and Custom Settings.  If you have an advanced camera you will have a dial that has M,S,A,P ,Auto, Scene, movie and maybe custom set up. So there are many modes to shoot from. Manual , Sutter Priority,  Aperture Priority, Program, Auto or Scene.  Some people shoot in manual all of the time. Me I shoot in Aperture Priority 90% and Manual when on a tripod or at night. There are usually custom settings that you can use that might be on a M1 or 2 that you can set up the settings that you shoot when you shoot manual. So if you're shooting in Another mode and you want to quickly go to manual you can put on M1 where you put your favorite setting so you can have a quick start.

ISO- Manual or Auto. In Manual you pick what ISO you want. In Auto the camera can decide and you can set limits that the camera can't go past. For me I shoot in Auto most of the time but I have a range between 100-1200 ISO.  You can change the range anytime you want and get your camera set so it shoots the best for your camera.

Focus- Focus is a big one do you want to single focus on one spot or mutable spots.  Do you let the camera pick or do you pick. Do you do continuous focusing? What about back button focusing where you focus with a button on the back of your camera . Lots of decisions to make to make it easer for you to shoot the way you shoot and what you shoot.  I shoot continuous most of the time and back button all of the time. If I need to pick a point I can turn on my touch screen and pick one or can use my joy stick on the back of the camera to pick.

White Balance.  Do you choose or do you let the camera choose?  If you shoot in RAW you can change later if you don't like it.  Do you custom white balance which is done mainly for portraits to make sure you get the skin the right tone. Depending on what and how you shoot this could be different for each person.  I shoot in Auto and Raw so I can make changes in post 99 percent of the time if I'm taking a portrait I'll use a gray card or a color checker passport so in post I can dial in the correct white balance.

Card slots? If you have two card slots how are you going to use them. Will they be used to make duplicates on separate cards or is one card set to be a overflow incase one fills up?  Or do you shoot RAW + JPEG Raw on one card and JPEG on the other.  Thats what I shoot it gives me a backup but doesn't take as much space then I can shoot in a special mode say Black and White and my JPEGS will be black and white but my RAW will have the full color.

Customizable Menus .  If you have customizable menus you can put the things that you change the most in this special tab and you can get to them quickly.  I have a function button on the back of my camera that brings up 8 things that I can choose from the menu for quick reference. I also have a tab in the menus for Favorites where I can put important stuff.  Like Format so I don't have to search for it I know its the first item in my Favorites tab.

As you can see there are many things that you can do to customize your camera to you.  When you get your camera customized to you the camera is easier to use and you can concentrate more on photography not settings on your camera.  I'm always customizing mine trying to make it easier to use and I'm always finding new and interesting things about my camera that I didn't know. I have another Sony camera body but it's quite different and all the buttons are not the same.  But I try to make it as close to this camera so its familiar when I use it and don't have to relearn it. You've spent a lot of hard earned money on your camera make it work for you and customize it to you.  Until Next week Get outside and Shoot.


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