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Setup Menu

Lesson 21 from: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Fast Start

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

21. Setup Menu

Every new Canon EOS 5D Mark IV owner should spend some time in the setup menu configuring the camera to their preferences -- Greengo walks you through what's what, from setting up the CF and SD cards to customizing the screen.
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Lesson Info

Setup Menu

Okay, we are now into the setup menu and there's a lot of little tweaks here that we're only gonna make once. There's a few in the first page that we're gonna come back to on a regular basis. Record function card folder select. And so this is where we get to choose a number of different features about where our images are being stored. And so we looked at this previously, this was in the quick menu if I recall correctly. Which memory card do you wanna go to, you can go the the CF, the SD or you can go to both cards. You can have raw and jpeg stored on separate cards. And so for basic shooting, I like the idea of auto switch. Especially if you have smaller cards. As soon as one card fills up it spills over into the next one. For the more serious shooter, at this point a lot of people really love the record to multiple cards. Everything is backed up in camera. Anything should go wrong, you have a backup immediately once that picture is taken. And once again, movies are only recorded to o...

ne card, whatever is the primary card designation in there. Beyond that, you can choose your primary card slot here. So for instance, this is where you would probably wanna have the CF card selected if you're shooting videos 'cause it's gonna be able to record a longer period of time especially with 4K video. You can create different folders on your cards. For instance, if you had business photos and personal photos, and you're gonna do a slide show and you don't want them mixed up, you can have one folder where one client's photos go and another folder where your own personal photos go. So those two don't get mixed up when you're in slide show or using the camera in some other way like that. The camera has a continuous file numbering system that starts at one and goes up to 10,000, and then just continues automatically every time you reformat or put a memory card in. It just keeps counting up. Which is what most people want. But if you want to reset it back to zero you can, you can have it auto reset, I believe every time you reformat the card or yeah I believe you can reformat the card. It'll reset it back to zero again. But then you're gonna end up with a lot of photos with the same file number on it. And so it's safest just to leave it in the continuous unless there's a good reason to change it out of it. Also on the file name, you can go in and you can change the letter number series at the beginning. And so you can dive in and preset a code. You could use your initials, for instance, that would be the presets of all of your images as far as the code. Auto rotate, what I recommend here is on computer. Because it gives you the image that is the largest on screen image on the back of the camera. The downside is that you have to flip the camera sideways to see your vertical image, but chances are you just shot a vertical, it's gonna be vertical, you can look at it in vertical. And I also want to see the image as big as it can be. And when it says on computer, that means when it gets to the computer stage, it'll automatically rotate vertical images because there is a orientation sensor built into the camera. Formatting the memory card deletes the photos, deletes the folders, the file directories, and any other bits of electronic data that is on the card. And so formatting the card is something I do on a regular basis before I go out onto a new shoot. I wanna have a fresh memory card that has all the space available and nothing else on it. How quickly do you want your camera to power down. And here's it's just kind of a balance between convenience and battery life. Two minutes is pretty normal choice here. The brightness of the LCD was controlled by that little ambient light receiver I told you about on the back of the camera. And at first it seemed kind of nice to have this in the auto setting 'cause as it got brighter outside the camera would increase in brightness, as it got darker it would decrease in brightness. But I found that I was using the back of the camera to judge exposure, in which case you should leave this in manual right in the middle of the settings. And so if you like looking at your camera and having a consistent brightness on the back of your camera, I would put it in manual. The only time I change it is when I am trying to show people images on the back of my camera under bright sunlight conditions. If I want to share photos I will sometimes pump up the brightness so that they can see the images played back a little bit more easily. LCD color tone, this has to do with the color tone of the LCD on the back of the camera. So if you want to warm it up or cool it down, sometimes LCDs over a long time span can drift a little bit in their color. And so it's starting at two, hopefully you'll never need to change this. But if you do want to change it, this is not changing your images, this is just changing the LCD on the back of the camera. Obviously, your date and time will go in here. You have time zones as you travel around the world. Language for all the different languages that you speak, not me. And this one's a big one here. So viewfinder display, we talked a lot about a lot of different ways to customize the viewfinder. What do we see in the viewfinder as we're holding the camera up to our eye? First off is the electronic level. Do you wanna make sure that your camera is perfectly level. Maybe so, if so this is where you turn it on. Grid display, from time to time I find it really handy to have a grid, especially if I'm shooting something that's very symmetrical or has a horizon line. This really helps me get the best composition possible. But it's not something that I leave on all the time. It's just a little bit too much clutter from general shooting. Now all those little items in the bottom of the viewfinder, here's where you get to pick and choose, be very very choosy, about which items you wanna look at on an all the time basis. And so normally this stuff comes up as you press the button to make that change. Which I think is wonderful. Because I frequently have the camera on a tripod and I have the camera up so high, I can't see the top LCD, but if I just hold this up I can press the button, I can see which button I'm pressing and I can make all those changes in the viewfinder. And this is where this type of SLR is bridging some of those features that are in mirror less cameras. And one of the things I like about mirror less cameras is just looking onscreen to make all my settings. And we can do most of that here with this camera here. And so there is a number of things. One item, if you did not want to turn the flicker on, you can check the box for flicker here and if there is a flicker problem, it'll warn you, it won't do anything, it'll just warn you that there's a flicker problem and then you can choose to go into the menu system and enable that flicker reduction system. So this is just a warning system and so there's something that actually does something about it, and this is just the warning. The touch control, so if you like using the back of the camera, you can set this to either standard or sensitive and if you don't use it at all you can disable it if you want to. Setup number three, the video system. So depending on what country you live in, you'll probably either wanna set it at NTSC or the Pal system as far as the standard system that TVs and video systems are imported and work with in your particular country. I love the battery info here 'cause this gives you exact charge of how good your battery is doing. And so if you wanna know how much is left in your battery, this is one of the things that I have set to my menu. This is one of my favorite items, I'm always checking to see how much life is left on my battery. And impromptu little demo here, I wanna show you one additional thing. And so let me go in and find my battery info, where is my battery info. Right up here. Is you can hit the info button right here. And you can see, these are the serial numbers of all the batteries that I own and how much power that battery had when I last put it in my camera. Now it's interesting, but it's not real useful because I might've taken that battery and put it in another camera and used it and it's down below this. But if you wanted to keep kind of tabs of where all your batteries are. And so, and those are the I guess the last dates that I had them in when I was using on the camera. And so I can see which battery, oh, it's the one that ends in 2F that is full and so that's the one that I would go and do. And so I mentioned about putting stickers on batteries. I do like to have my batteries labeled. And so, I'm gonna cover up my email here, but on the back of the camera I put on what date I purchased the battery, and I put on the serial number and then I put on a little code that shows you how good it is right there. And I put it on the bottom of the battery because when I stick this into the camera I don't want any stickers on this side where things can get stuck on there. And so I put it on the bottom of the camera down there. And so when I put it in there, it fits in and doesn't cause any problems. Sensor cleaning, so we got a little sub menu in here to talk about, so we talked about this before when you turn the camera on it automatically does that little shake, and gets all that little dust off your sensor or at least hopefully most if not all of it. If you wanted to manually turn it on, you could turn it on right here. Although I think it'd be a lot easier just to turn the camera on and off 'cause it does the same thing. And then you can go in and you can manually clean it. And this is not for everyone. So step one is pretty easy. You get one of these rocket blowers, and you take the lens off, you put the camera in the manual cleaning mode, the mirror goes up, the shutter opens up and there's your sensor. And carefully you blow air in, hopefully knocking off any dust. If that doesn't do the job, some people go to the next stage which is sweeping it clean with some sort of sensor cleaning system. And the idea is in this particular case you have a swab with a little bit of alcohol liquid, you put it on the swab, you swipe it across the sensor, you clean off anything that was not knocked off by the automatic sensor or by the rocket blower on the camera. If you're not comfortable with step two here, you can turn the camera into a repair shop and they can do it for you, for a fee of course. All right, the info button on the back of the camera will cycle through different modes of information. And this is where you can go in and you can say you know what that camera settings is something I never, ever use and so if you don't use that you can go in and completely get rid of it. It's something that many times I'm not using but if you wanna get in and control which one of these do you see, just uncheck the box of any ones that you don't want to work with. Custom quick control. Another little sub menu in here. And so this is where you can edit the layout and choose exactly what your camera shows you on the back of you camera. Which I think is very, very cool. One option here is you can just revert to the standard layout which looks like this, which is not bad, but I see a bunch of empty boxes there just waiting to be filled with information. And then the third option is that you can clear all the items on this. So let's do a little demo. And what I'm gonna do is, go ahead and get my camera turned on here. So we can see as I press the info button I cycle around. Here is my standard quick control screen. And it's gonna show me shutter speed, aperture, iso, some basic information. It shows me if I'm focusing point over here on the side. It's showing me that focusing point there. And so I'm gonna dive into the menu system, and I'm gonna go into custom quick control, and I'm gonna clear everything out. And so I'm gonna go in and start editing. And gives me some instructions there on how do I add stuff and I've got a blank slate. What do I wanna have in my camera? So I'm gonna hit Q to add an item. And now I'm gonna choose something, okay, I wanna know which mode I'm in, that's good. Now I get to choose, do I want it big or small? I'm gonna go small. And I can choose wherever I want to put it. I like it there. And I'm gonna come over and let's figure out something over here in this corner, and you know what I would like, is I want, where's my focusing points. AF point selection right here. And I want that big. I like that nice and big. And so you can see that. No I'm gonna keep that up here. All right, I'm not gonna do the whole thing here but I'm gonna go in and add a couple more things. You know I saw one that I've never seen before on any previous camera, and it's something I've always been wanting and where is it. There's several pages of stuff in here so you gotta go through, you can find all the things that you want. And so here, you know what, I don't wear watches anymore and so I can put the date right down here so that I don't have to dive into the menu system to find the date, it's just right there, very very simple. And so you get to go choose, and I'm not gonna do this anymore, but you can go choose all the different items you want, you can choose them small or big and then move them around. And have one custom control screen that really fits your exact needs, and so. I think that's a lot of great customization. I love that in a camera. And so, get in and tweak your camera and make it fit you perfectly. That is our custom quick control. Info button live view display options. So we just talked about this with the info button display options, but this is specifically when you are in live view, you have different options here. So when you're in live view you press the info button and it cycles through four different screens. And you can choose what you wanna see in those screens. One of the options is you can choose a histogram. You can either have the standard brightness histogram, or you can have the RGB one and you can choose it in different sizes. And then you can of course reset it back to the standard settings. So let's go ahead and just let's tweak a little bit. We're tweakers, we like to tweak with our camera, customizers. So I'm gonna go in, hit the menu, info button live view display options, live view info switching settings, and so I can choose how many of these windows I want. And what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna go in and I'm gonna customize screen number four. It says down here, info edit screen, so I'm gonna hit info. And now I can choose, do I want the top and bottom line of information and I'm gonna say I like that stuff, that looks pretty good. The sidebars of information, that's not really that important to me. I'm gonna forget about that. On screen buttons, so I can use the touch screen. I'm not a huge touch fan but I'll go for it, I'll give it a try. Histogram display, you betcha, I like to have that. Although that looks pretty big, that's really taking up a lot of screen space. I'm gonna adjust that later. Do I want to have the tilt horizon? I like it but I'm gonna turn it off for this one. And now I'm gonna hit OK. I'm gonna come down to OK, I'm gonna come over to the display histogram. I want to change this to the RGB histogram, and I want the smaller size. So I've chosen the small RGB and I'm gonna go back. And now I'm gonna put the camera into live view. And if I press the info button, we'll cycle through the different options. And I believe my option, I think this is two, I think that's three. Here's my option where I chose the top line of information, but bottom line of information, and the small histogram but I also have on screen buttons. So I could hit the Q menu if i wanna get into that. I can do the touch shutter that we've talked about earlier. I can, can I zoom in, I can zoom in and I can use the touch screen. Oh I gotta use the buttons here to move around. And so another great way of customizing the camera, but this stays just particularly in the live view mode. All right, the rate button over on the left side of the camera is really only active in the playback mode. And if you want to change it to be a protect button where it prevents your images from being deleted, they can still be reformatted, they can still be deleted once they're on your computer. It's a very light level of protection. You could have it via protect feature on that. Which could also just be a flag that that's just an image that you're interested in or as a pick of some sort. And so I wish they would allow us more customization of that particular button. Onto page four, if you're gonna be connecting up an external display you can control the frame rates that is needed for that type of device. Normally if you leave this in auto it's gonna be fine and figure things out between the TV and the camera.

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!

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