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Panasonic GX7 Fast Start

Lesson 9 of 11

Custom and Setup Menus

John Greengo

Panasonic GX7 Fast Start

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

9. Custom and Setup Menus

Lesson Info

Custom and Setup Menus

We're out of the men you back into the regular menu you might say this is the custom menu and this is where you get to customize a lot of the very particulars of how you like the camera set up. The first one controls the c one two, three settings that I talked about at the beginning of the class and so you can program in these well, I guess there's a total of six different settings in here that you get to set up well, actually, no there's five because c three is either one, two or three so there's five options the way that you can customize your camera so that you can quickly turn a dial, press a few buttons and get straight to those settings, and what you would do is set the camera exactly as you wanted and then come into the custom setting memory and you would register these as any one of those five options. The silent mode on the camera is basically going to turn off anything that is obnoxious, the elektronik set shutter sound noise, any sort of lamps that might turn on. And as much...

as I like my camera in this stealth mode, I don't leave it in the silent mode because if you leave it in the silent mode and you go try to turn the flash on the flash will not turn on because it's in the silent mode and so what I would generally do is go around and turn each of these items off individually so that if I need to use one of them, I can turn that one on for that one particular time. Next up is the auto focus auto exposure lock button on the back of the camera. What exactly do you want this button to do? You can have it locked the exposure, the focus both of them or as I like to do, I'd like to put it as my auto focus on buttons, so that when I press this button, the camera will focus, and so a general user might prefer a lock so that they could lock the exposure. Some of the people who've been in photography for a while kind of know that benefit of having that back button for focus to separate it from the shutter release up on top. It's a nice way to have a little bit more fine tune control. The next one controls how the button works it's either a switch like it's, a light switch where you push it on and then you push it again to turn it off, and so, if you want the lock hole, you turn it on and this is not going to work for the focusing aspect if you haven't changed over to focusing, but if you have it locking the exposure it's kind of handy to be able to just press that button and have everything locked in while you could recompose the camera. Some people might not like it locked because they might forget about it, but I think it's a pretty good option. The shutter a f controls when you press down on the shutter release, does the camera auto focus and for the more advanced user, turning that off and turning the one on the back on is a good option that a lot of people like, and so you get to pick and choose where you activate the focusing page to custom menu half press on the release. So if you press down on the shutter release halfway, do you want it to take a picture? Not a lot of good reasons for this. If I found that if you wanted to put the camera into the elektronik shutter mode, there is thie ever so slightest indication that you were pushing down on the shed a relation. So if you set this in the half release, it would be very hard to tell that you're even pressing the button on it because your finger would hardly be moving. I might call this my north korea shed a release so that nobody could tell that I was taking a picture I'm just holding the camera I'm not actually taking a picture no no there's no picture taken next up is thief focusing mode of the camera talked a little bit about this earlier the single be flexible in the continuous option for most people most of the time f s is where you're going to want the camera when you're shooting action that's moving around that would be the f c and if you are shooting video then I would go with f f because what happens is it will continually focus but it won't be too jittery moving in and out it'll kind of focus on something and it will settle in and stay there until the subject changes to a significantly new difference eh so it's just a little bit more of a jump that the subject has to change through before the camera starts refocusing on it but a f s for most general photography so quick a f is the option that when you have the camera in it and you move the camera fairly suddenly it will start to focus and then it will stop and then if you move it over here it will start to focus again and it kind of thinks that you're looking at something new and you want to focus give it a try see if you like it I think it's a little a little bit much so I'm gonna leave it turned off I sensor a f is another automatic feature but this one I kind of like I hate to admit it in some ways because what happens here is as soon as you hold the camera to your eye it will focus and then it will stop and as long as it's up to your eye on ly focus is the first time you hold it up so as soon as you hold the camera to your eye it's going to start focusing for you even before you put your finger down on the shed a release and I remember one of the minolta cameras had this back way way early in the day of auto focus and it was it was kind of goofy because it was constantly auto focusing every time you move the camera someplace else and this one it's kind of dialed back a little bit in that it only focuses when you first hold it up to your eye and so you might want to give it a try. I imagine some of the more serious shooters out there are probably not going to like this. One of the magnifying options we had is when we focused it magnified a little portion of the image for a short period of time well, here is where you get to decide how long does it magnify that little portion that I'm focusing on so let me know that I'm properly focused, so this is when you are in the auto focus mode and you have the pinpoint focusing activated and you can choose either a half second, one second or one point five seconds I say said it on mid and see if you wantto change it to something shorter or something longer down the road okay custom page number three the auto focus to assist lamp in front another one of those little stealthy things that I like to turn off don't really need it thie autofocus a lamp does assist under low lighting conditions, but it's really not very powerful, so it's only going to illuminate a subject that's maybe three or four feet in front of you, and so it does very little good. And if you know how to point your camera at what has contrast, you probably won't need this at all and it's sometimes disturbing or distracting. The direct focus area option is the four way controller on the back of the camera. If you want to have direct control over where the focusing is, you could turn this on. Now be aware that if you turn this on, you will no longer have direct control to your focusing or to your eyes, so to your white balance or to your motor drive, you'll have to jump into your quick menu in order to get there so this is going to be good for somebody who does a lot of focusing adjustments and focusing on different areas most people are going, I'm going to say would be better off leaving this turned off, and only those who really know they're going to use it, turn it on focus and release priority when the normally you're going to leave the camera and focus priority that way, the camera has to be in focus to take a picture it's just kind of a safety recall, so that if you just start jumping down upon the shutter release button, it's not going to fire until the picture is in focus, plus imf is something that more serious photographers might like and what it is is it gives you the ability with pretty much all lenses, I would say to touch up manual focusing after the camera has auto focus, so once the camera has auto focus and your finger is still on the shutter release halfway, does anything happen if you turn the manual focus ring? If you leave this turned off, you can't even do anything manual focus, but allows you the option to go in and change that focus a little bit after you've already auto focused, so there was a number of manual focus assists, we had the magnification, we had the focus speaking as well, and you get to choose how these things are activated and the options are there is a button on the back of the camera, that's the left button on the four way controller, or you can have it whenever you touch the focusing ring, you could have it one or the other or have it do both or none at all as far as that manual focus assist, and I kind of like to be able to do it with either the focusing ring or the button in the back of the camera. It's a nice option. I think a lot of people are gonna have a lot of personal choices if they even use this feature as to what works for them. Next up is our manual focus guide, and I think I showed this to you earlier in one of the little demos, and as you focus the little indicator in the back, the camera moves from the tulip to the mountain to show you whether you're focusing close up or towards infinity. Next one is focus peaking, which is that highlighted area that shows you what is in focus. And I know a lot of serious video shooters like this and a lot of still photographers using these marylise cameras like this focus speaking because it's, very easy to see what is in folk. This is it kind of shimmers with that highlight area it is a little distracting, so there are some of you that just are not going to use this and it's oh kind of disturbing for the composition so you might want to turn it off but for accurate focusing does a very good job. The history graham on the camera is a great way of telling your exposure and so I love looking at history grams to judge the brightness levels of an image, but I really hate the fact that it's cluttering up over my image and so I usually leave that turned off as much as I like it there's other ways to check it in the playback mode grid lines will turn on a variety of different types of grid lines here you can see the rule of thirds or a center point and we have another one that's very interesting because you get to set where the guidelines are. And so if you were trying to compose something where there was an exact point that you were trying to line up in multiple photographs, you could use these guidelines to create and put that point anywhere on the frame that you want, but most people are going to need that on a day to day basis the highlights I've mentioned this before in the movie setting these are the pixels that have been blown out and when you have this turned on these over, explode over exposed pixels are going to blink at you like this tow, letting you know that you need to adjust your exposure in many cases, and so I like it, but I don't like it on all the time it's kind of a specific tool that I'll use in some situations. Next up is constant preview and what's going to happen in constant preview is it's going to show you kind of a really time effects of what's going on in the viewfinder, which sounds pretty good, but the problem is, is that it changes the depth of field and it's hard to judge really sharp focus on it, and it has a hard time working in dark situations. And so if you ever work in a low light environment, you definitely want to leave this turned off for some people it's kind of nice to leave it on because they concede the effects and the changes that they're making in the camera to their settings. You know, if you're going to change the contrast or saturation, you'll see it right there in the viewfinder as well as changing shutter speeds and apertures, but it just doesn't work well in very dark situation, so I think the more serious photographers might want to leave this one turned off we had a question earlier in the day and I think I gave them the wrong answer. They were wondering about the shutter speeds and apertures that show up in the frame and it's the exposure meter that you may want to turn on or off. I love being able to see the graphics I hate the fact that it's taking up so much of the frame it's really hiding a lot of my subject material there, and so I tend to want to leave that turned off the dial guide is just simply a little reminder that in order to get exposure compensation, you press in on the dial on the back of the camera. I have to be honest with you folks. I was out shooting with this camera after I had owned it for a couple of months, but I wasn't shooting with it on a daily basis, and I was trying to do exposure compensation, and I forgot where it was. For about five minutes, I couldn't remember where exposure compensation was on the camera, because that button is so well hidden, you might say, hiding that feature, and so once you get to know the camera and, you know that's, where exposure compensation is, you could turn this off so it's just less clutter on the camera, so the display style for the live view finder we talked about this before, and this is the eye level finder, as well as the screen on the back of the camera. How do you want your information, too, slade? Because the options are either having it over laid on the image or outside of the image area. If you choose outside the image area, your actual image will be a little bit smaller. So there is a tradeoff. Either way, that you go here, my personal style is with it outside the area of the image, because I like to have my image as clean and as clear as possible. Okay, page six, monitor, infor information display I would leave this one turned on. I think this is very handy one to leave turned on, rather than using the back of the camera for composing your images. It's much better for controlling where the data is set and making those changes the record area. He is going to be coming into situations where the fact is is that we have a four by three by four aspect ratio and the video frame. It is a crop within there, and so when you start shooting video, you're going to get this cropped area within their and so you can set your default setting at four by three or sixteen by nine, and I guess the the question for you is, what are you shooting most of still pictures or video because if you're shooting video most of the time I would switch it over to the video mode so that it shows you in kind of full with what you're going to be getting in the video and as you take still pictures you're going to get something mohr on the top and bottom but it's showing you the full video frame and so it's kind of setting a priority standard what's more important for viewing the image you still image for the video image. I think a lot of people this video modes are nice but they're not the best on the market so most people are going to be interested in taking still images with this camera with the remaining display you can choose to see whether you want to see the number of still images left or the number of the amount of time left remaining display and so time or a number of pictures auto review when you take a picture how long is that image on the back of the camera? Four seconds is pretty normally you can go all the way to turning it off to having its state on their consistently three or four seconds seems to be a pretty good number, so we talked to the very beginning about all the different customizable functions on this camera all those different buttons both the physical buttons and the elektronik buttons on the touch screen and this is where you get to go in and set them and so you can dive into the function setting and program to your heart's content and customize your camera exactly the way you want it now you'll be able to do this in the recording mode and then there is also a separate set of function buttons some of them are the same that work in the playback mode so that you can have quick access to certain features when you're playing back an image next up the quick menu I went in earlier and showed you a little bit about this when we're talking about the quick menu you khun have it at the preset option where it just chooses was choosing choosing about a dozen items there for you to have access to if you would like to customize this you want to go into the custom setting and then customs set up your quick menu so that you have quick access to those fifteen items five on three different pages for controlling and having access to some of your favorite features that are in the menu system the dial setting on the camera can be customized as well we're talking about the top dial and the back dial you can control which one uses they have stopped which one controls the shutter speed and I'm gonna make a recommendation that's going to make this camera a little bit easier to work for most people and that is if you take the rotation and you flip it from the standard setting to the second setting that you see listed up here when you do that, the dials will work in unison with the way that the exposure meter works in the camera, so if you're trying to get the exposure meter to the left, you will turn the dial to the left for some reason it's kind of in the reverse orientation right now, so you may want to switch that rotation of the f stop and the shutter speed on it. The video button up on the top of the camera some people don't like video and they don't want to shoot video and you could turn it off if you want. I think a lot of people like that option it's not sticking out too far. Most people don't accidentally hit it. There is an option if you have a panasonic power zoom lens that allows you to zoom the power or zoom the lands from the camera, and to be honest with you, I don't have one of those lenses, so I can't show it and I haven't played with it on, so enjoy that if you have it, the ice sensor on the camera, this kind of flips the display from the back of the camera to the viewfinder, and you can set this on or off and I kind of like it turned on and you can set the sensitivity, and I recommend turning the sensitivity down low because if you haven't on too high any time you get something near the back of the camera, the back screen flips off and you kind of don't want it flipped off until you get your eye right up to the camera. And so I think the low setting is best in that case final page of the custom settings, you can go in and customize a lot of the touch settings on the camera, so whether you like to use them or not, if you don't use them, you can turn them off, and you won't see the clutter on the screen, and so he carefully go through and figure out exactly what you need and get rid of. But all the rest, touch scroll, this one took a while to figure out this one was not clear at all. So I'm gonna have to do a live demo it's not very important, but I figured it out and I want to show you how to do it. So when you play back an image, you can use the touch screen on the back of the camera to swipe from image to image. If you hold down over on the side of this, how fast do the images scroll past and I think minus said at the low speed right now and let me go down to page eight touch scroll that's on the low speed let's go to the high speed and I will show you the difference and so that's the high speed scroll and it's just using the touch screen how quick is it changing from picture to picture? So that is what that big important feature is doing okay, a menu guide normally I love turning these things off because it's just clutter in front of the frame but in this case what it is is that displays just simple little options when you go into those interact or the get this right the intelligent auto mode, the scene mode and the creative mode it just gives you a little option of as to this is where you've turned the camera and it's not a big deal so I leave it turned on it's fine if you want to hook up one of those lenses that air not panasonic not olympus not auto focus not designed for these cameras you can turn on the shoot without lens so that even though there is no lens on the camera, the camera can still shoot a picture and so if you have any of the external adapters that's something you'll definitely want toe make a change up normally just leave it turned off ok, we're almost done folks hang in there me too. I better hang in there on dh. We're down to the set up section, so this is just general camera set up. This is the type of stuff that you set once, and you are totally done. For instance, we're going to set the clock to the correct time. We have world time. So if you are changing from time zone two time zone on a trip, for instance, you can change which region of the world you happen to be in. The date is also here. You have a travel date that you can set up that will record when you leave for your trip, and when you come back on your trip, it'll automatically adjust the time of the photos that you shoot during that seems like a lot of work to set that up ahead of time. You could just quickly change your clock, but if you want to do it ahead of time, it's all set up ahead of time. We have a wifi option for going in and turning on the wifi. We went through that earlier in the class and the beat want to turn the deep off, get very tired of the beat, we know we're in focus, we don't need the camera to be put us, but, you know, I know a lot of entry level photographers like that kind of has that confirmation that their camera is in focus, but once you get used to it, turn it off go into the stealth mode the elektronik shutter is so incredibly quiet it is dead silent and if you are using it I sometimes we'll put it on low just so that I am consciously aware of when the camera is actually shooting these pictures. It is an artificial electronic shelter it's coming out of the speaker on the side of the camera but you can turn it down to a low volume so it's not very loud. Next up we're gonna have the generals volume of the speaker on the camera you have zero to six in levels level three right? The middle is good place to start monitor display is going to give you one to sixteen or excuse me, you're going to go wrong one you're going to be able to go in and change the brightness contrast saturation as well as the colors of your monitor if for some reason your monitor is drifting in colors or having any other issues monitor luminous is gonna have an option for auto brightness, which I'm not a big fan of because it's the the screens or what were often basing our exposure on and we don't want those changing by a little bit of change of light and so I'd recommend just changing that too there is a one option if you are under bright sunlight that might work if you are under bright sunlight a majority of the time, the economy mode. This is how quickly the camera powers down after you have been using it for a period of time. How quickly does it fall asleep faster, it falls asleep, the more battery power it conserves and so set this according to your needs. Normally the display will go go down after about two minutes and then the camera going toe a more serious sleep mode after five minutes, where it's using very, very little battery power. If you hook the camera up to your computer, you can make connections here that determining that connection, I generally recommend just using a card reader for download the the images to your computer. If you're going out put to a tv, you can control whether it's a sixteen by nine aspect ratio or four by three aspect ratio as well as the resolution. If you're going to do a slide show straight from your camera to a tv, for instance, they do have a connection this panasonic camera with a panasonic tv under something called a vera link and that's something we're not going to get into, but it's fine to leave it on it's not going to waste any battery power at all. It's just gonna be able to connect up to the tv if you happen to have it, there is a three d lens option that I don't know anyone that has, but there is a three d lens option very limited as to what you can do with it. You do need to have one of the panasonic three d tvs for this to work, in which case you would put it in the three d mount. So if you're one of the twelve people out there that has the three d lands, you can put it in the three d mode menu resume is kind of a nice feature tohave I get very frustrated with cameras that do not have this in what happens here is when you're in the menu working on something and then you leave the menu and you come back to the menu where does it go doesn't go to the top of the menu or where you were last? And so in this case, it's kind of nice to be able to come back to what you were last working on, which I think many people will appreciate menu background simply chooses a color in the background. No big deal menu information there is a little ticker on the top of the camera in the back when you are in the menu setting that tells you a little bit more information about the feature that you're on normally I leave this I'm the type of person that wants to leave this turned off it's not such a big deal here because it doesn't take up any extra space and so if you're still learning your camera leave it turned on if you got everything dialed in and you just don't want anything blinking at yet turn it off setups for the language and the firm where called version display and so if you go into this you'll see what version firm where you have in your camera from where is the software that runs the camera if you do not have or if yushin I should say if you have something lower than one point two for the camera you have an old version of the firmware and you can get free new software for your camera you need to go to panasonic's support page look for the gx seven and download the driver for the camera you would then transfer it onto a memory card put the memory card in the camera come here in the version display and it would give you an option for uploading the new firmware now I was actually just reading this morning because every time I teach one of these classes I go check that very morning is there a new firm where that I'm going to have to change in the note and there is a rumor rumor on the internet that there is a version one point three coming out soon and so if you're watching this in the future several months down from when we recorded this you might want to check for version one point three or one point four or two point one or who knows what the software is going to maybe give you new features or fixed little bugs within the camera it's free tohave all you need is an internet connection and a memory card in order to put it on your camera and there's more information at the panasonic website about howto go through the process okay exposure compensation reset ok so when you put your camera into exposure compensation let's say you make it darker by a stop do you want that automatically revert back to zero or do you want it to stay there until you change it and so kind of for the more amateur photographer they might want to have it read turn back to zero once they've turned their camera off because they might forget that they did that for the more serious photographer they're going to leave this turned off so that when they set something it always stays exactly where they are and that is just controlling the exposure compensation on the camera. The same option is available for the self timer do you want the self timer to automatically turn off for most people they're getting kind of a group family shot they want to get a shot and they're going to be done with the self timer and so the self timer turns off there are some people who would use the self timer continuously for a variety of reasons in which case they could turn this in the off position so that it stays exactly where they leave it the camera will give a file number two each picture that you take if you want to go in and reset that number you can it's not really necessary eso you don't need to worry about doing that reset will go in and reset all the camera controls or the custom controls of your camera so if you want to set it back to the factory default settings you can do that with one or both of those groups you can also go in and reset all the wifi settings that you might have set hooking it up to your phone for instance pixel re flesh will go through and kind of check the sensor for any sort of problems and if there is it will fix the problem or it will make a work around for the problem sensor cleaning we'll clean the sensor it's doing the same thing is turning the camera often on so that would be an even faster way of doing it but I will mention that there is a manual option for cleaning the sensor and if you do want to do this you should get one of these rocket blowers or air blowers and you take the lens off and you blow air in on the sensor, hopefully knocking off any dust that might be caused because it's sitting right on the sensor kid casting a shadow and making a little dark spot on your pictures. If you want to get a little bit more serious because you've got something that's, a little sticky, step two is a swab and liquid system you know, I don't recommend this for everybody, but for people with steady hands that like working on things, you put a couple of drops alcohol on the swab, and then you wipe it across the sensor, hopefully taking off any dust with it. You do need to be very careful with this, because that sensor is a very important component within the camera and you don't want to damage it. Some people don't want to do it, and they can turn their cameras into a repair shop and they will gladly do it for a small fee. Formatting is going to delete the pictures and reformat the memory card something I like to do on a regular basis. Once I have downloaded it, backed up by images, put the card back in the camera and I reformat it and everything is reset on the card so I could get his many pictures as possible, and I've thrown away all the junk that gets put on these little memory cards with file directories and empty folders.

Class Description

Knowing your camera is essential when you’re exploring photography.

Photography enthusiasts and beginners will get an in-depth introduction to the Panasonic® GX7 in this course. John Greengo will cover everything you need to know about the features, buttons, and menus on your camera. You’ll learn about taking full advantage of your camera’s versatility so you can get the shot you want, when you want it. You’ll also explore working with the GX7’s tilting LCD screen and viewfinder.

Make the most of your camera purchase by getting this comprehensive orientation to it’s features and functions.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase


Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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a Creativelive Student

I bought a Panasonic G9 camera and couldn't find a good visual user guide anywhere. I've hunted through YouTube and online, only to waste hours scrubbing through off topic babble just to find bits of useful information, but there is nothing complete out there. I found John's Panasonic G7 presentation, and it's been immensely helpful. Though the camera button locations and handling are different from the G9, the menu system, and camera functions are mostly similar. I try reading user manuals, but it's easy to get lost and sometimes hard to relate to. John presents everything so clearly, logically, and in terms easy to relate to and follow. He puts in so much time to make everything look professional and make sense. I really appreciate all his hard work, and his love and passion to share his knowledge. I'm so thankful he creates videos like this, as modern cameras have so many features now, that they can get overwhelming to learn how to use. Watching him demo cameras is also really helpful. I've also taken his Fundamentals of Photography class, and it's phenomenal and foundational. It's helped me learn a lot. Thanks so much for these great quality classes.

Nhahanh Nguyen

Simply wow! Worth every penny. The whole course is totally professional and delivered in a classroom-like setting. The visual presentation and live demos are flawless and so helpful if you have your camera on and play along. I would never buy another expensive camera without taking a course like this! I've looked everywhere else online for camera-specific information like this in one place (I have no time to browse the poor manual that came with the camera). John also gives great information on basic photography. Highly recommend the class to all newbies to this camera. I will be much more comfortable using this little beast after finishing this course. Thank you!!

Guy Holt

I have had the GX7 for some time, and never fully understood how to use all the settings. This course was brilliant, clear and precise and easy to follow and interesting. Brilliant!