Skip to main content

Playback Menu

Lesson 20 from: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Fast Start

John Greengo

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

20. Playback Menu

Don't skip the playback menu -- here's where you can transfer images from one card to the other, rate photos for faster culling later, and more.
Next Lesson: Setup Menu

Lesson Info

Playback Menu

All right, time to get into the playback menu, and there's a lot of things that we're gonna go through pretty quickly here because this doesn't have to do with image quality. It's just kinda working with your images once you have shot them. Protecting your images prevents them from being deleted. Then can still be re-formatted on the memory card. They can still be deleted when you download them to your computer. It's a very light level of protection on your camera, and so you can go in and select particular images there to do it. You can rotate images, the only really good reason is if you're gonna do a slide show either on the back of the camera, or on your TV, and you've shot an image that is not showing up in the proper format on the back of the camera. You can, of course, erase images, and there is a garbage can on the back of the camera, which is a little bit quicker for individual images, but if you are erasing a lot of images, it's a little bit quicker here. You can also erase a...

ll images. I don't recommend doing that. Formatting, I think, is better. We'll talk about that in the next section, or you can go into particular folders and delete images. You can hook your camera up to a printer, and this is one of those areas, there's like 10 pages in the instruction manual on how to do this. We're not gonna get into this here, but you can do it. You can select different images and sizes and so forth with that. You can create photo albums in camera, and this has to do with working with the Canon EOS Utility, and it's basically an album, a group of pictures that you can kind of set aside and put into a folder. You do need to work with the Canon software in order to make this work, something I've never used in my real photography that I do myself. Image copy, this can be handy, copying images from one card to the other, so you could be shooting on one card, and then you could decide, "I'm gonna put a second card in the camera, "and copy everything over," or you could have a friend who said, "Hey, can you give me a copy of that image?" "Give me your memory card, I'll put it in my camera. "I'll copy that one image over." If you recall earlier, I said that movies only get recorded to one card. Well, you can come here, select that movie, and copy it to the other card, so, very useful device. I'm glad to have this on the cameras. RAW image processing, and so we played around with this earlier. We were in the playback menu. I hit the queue button, and I went in, and I processed a RAW image, so this is kinda Photoshop in the camera. You can go in, adjust the brightness, and save it as a new JPEG image. You are never damaging, harming, or destroying the original image. You are creating a copy of that image. You can take an image and crop it if you want to, in camera. There's a number of controls. I'm not gonna go through all the controls, but you can look along the top. There's gonna be a menu for moving that frame box around and changing the size of that frame, and cropping that image, and then saving that as a new file. Once again, no matter what type of image you do this with, you are saving a new file, not damaging the original image. Same thing goes for Resize. If you're shooting with a JPEG, large JPEG, and you wanna make it into a smaller JPEG that's easier to email or post on a particular type of site, you can create different size JPEGs right there in camera. You can rate your images if you want, and this can be very handy, as I say, for getting a jump on your editing process. If you know something came out right, you can give it one through five stars in the camera. If you wanna hook your camera up to a TV, you can have a little slide show in the camera, and you can choose which images and some basic setups for a little, simple slide show right there. You can transfer images from your camera to your computer. As I say, it's a little bit slower, a little bit more cumbersome than just using a card reader, which is what I prefer, but that's what this whole section is about. There's a whole sub menu that you dive into, and here, you get to choose which images are transferred over. If you only want to download a few, you can do that. If you are shooting RAW plus JPEG, you can choose what you wanna send over, only the JPEGs, only the RAWs, or both. Then, there is also the option, with some Canon software that you can add caption information to images as you shoot them, and you can have that information transferred over if you are using that software options. I mentioned when you play back the image, the back dial goes forward and back through your photos and the top dial jumps you 10 forward and 10 back. Well, you can change that to every hundred or by date, or by folder, or a number of other different areas, and so one of the ways that I creatively use this image is I took a whole bunch of images, and I went through and I had extra time on my hands 'cause I was in transportation. I had nothing else to do, so I looked at all my images, and I rated my favorite images as two-star images. I then, set the image jump to look for two-star images, and then I handed the camera to somebody else, and said, "Here are some of the best photos from the day," and every photo they look at, is like a great photo 'cause I'm choosing every 20th photo in there. They're seeing only the highlights, and that way they aren't seeing all the clutter. I'm showing them a shorter collection of just the images that I want to share with them, so I think there's a creative, good use for that if you need that sort of thing. Highlight alert can show you overexposed pixels. Now, once again, the image you're looking at on the back of the camera is a JPEG version, potentially, of a RAW image that you're recording, and so just because it's blinking highlights at you doesn't mean that it's necessarily overexposed, but it might be. It's a warning that you may wanna take a second photo with a slightly different exposure to adjust for that, so it's a great way to show you overexposed pixels, which can be a real problem to deal with after the fact. AF point display is something that I would normally leave turned off because I don't like clutter on my images, but for people who are just getting into this camera, maybe this is the first 5D camera they've had. Well, then if you leave this turned on, it's gonna show you the focusing points that the camera was using when that picture was taken, and it's gonna help give you an insight to how the camera is focusing, and so this is something that you might wanna leave turned on for a little while, to kinda learn the system that's going on, and then turn it off, so you don't have to look at it anymore. The playback grid is something that we've seen before. If you wanna see a playback grid, and this is something that I never have turned on on my images, but if you wanna make sure you have a level horizon, these would do it for sure. You can control what type of histogram you see. The brightness is just all the pixels combined in one, or you can have it separated out into red, green, and blue. I prefer the red, green, and blue. It's giving me a little bit more detailed information. I can see if one of the color channels is clipping and getting too bright or too dark, and it's just a little bit, it's more pleasing on the eyes. I like colors, I like pretty colors, and so RGB, I think is a good one to have. So, this has to do with that time code if you recall. You can see the recording time or the time code when you're playing back images. This is, I think, a good one to change because it comes set I think, to two times magnification from the center, and if you change it to Actual size(from selected pt), it'll zoom in to a one-to-one magnification from where your focus point was, and that's generally where we are most interested in getting information about sharpness, is where our focus point was, and really seeing it a lot closer, and so that is gonna enable you to jump in a little bit more quickly and see where that is. It does jump in quite a bit, but I think it's a good thing to have, and I know a lot of other photographers are using that setting as well. When you're playing back, and you're using it on a TV, do you wanna be able to use your TV's remote to go forward and back through your images? You can probably turn that on if you use your camera in that mode. It's not something that's being done on a regular basis, which is why I have it at disabled, but it doesn't have a lot of harm to turn that on.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Canon 5D Mark IV Recommended Settings

Ratings and Reviews


John is such a fabulous educator. Well spoken, knowledgeable and he presents with such clarity and easy, it makes listening that much more enjoyable. I would highly recommend taking this class and any of his classes dealing with photography. HE simplifies the menu system and buttons on the camera in this course that would be painstakingly long if you tried it on your own. I have watched this video 2-3 times know and each time I go back, I learn a little more. Being able to drop into any of the main topics with easy, not having to watch and search for your desired info is so convenient. I will never buy another camera without checking to see if John has completed a review on it........I trust his opinion. Thanks John......I am a fan.

Ralph Somma

I was reluctant to purchase this course because I already have the Instruction Manual that came with the 5D Mark IV and am committed to reading it in it's entirely. Nevertheless, after watching a preview of the course, I decide to buy it so I could view it at my leisure, pause and rewind it as needed. I am so glad I did. John Greengo's teaching method is clear and concise. He presents the material in a way that makes it interesting and enjoyable to learn. His effective use of visuals and demonstrations makes understanding every important function of the 5D Mark IV a breeze. I look forward to implementing what I've learned, his recommendations and tweaking the camera's settings to suit my own needs and preferences. Now as I trudge through all 600+ pages of the manual, I'm confident I will more easily grasp the camera's 100+ settings and can always refer back to the course if necessary.


First I have to say that I wanted this camera before it was even released. I had taken some of John's fast start courses and I had some questions regarding this camera vs. the 5D mark III and 7D mark II that I was using at that time. I emailed John and got an "out of office/out on location response". I put it out of my mind assuming that when John Greengo was back in the office, he'd have hundreds of emails waiting and my little question would get lost in the shuffle. I was delighted to receive a response a few weeks later. I was even more delighted when he released this fast start course. I did end up buying the 5D mark IV (love it) and had a pretty good handle on using it. This class opened up some new doors in how to use all of the features and customize things to suit my needs. I can never recommend John's classes enough. He explains things in an easy yet technical way that is useful to both beginners and seasoned photographers!

Student Work