I have the much-anticipated Canon EOS 6D Mark II
in my hands and it is time to set up the camera for use.
Following are the 35 steps I take to make an out-of-the-box 6D II ready for use.
While 35 sounds like a large number of steps, nothing here is difficult. Just take one step at a time.
- Open the box, find the battery and charger and plug it in. If you have another charged LP-E6/LP-E6N battery available, you can continue to the battery-required steps without a wait.
- While the battery is charging, unpack the other items you want from the box.
This is also a good time to grip the camera, taking in the new-camera grippyness that is right up there with new car smell.
- Download and install the Canon Solution Disk software on your computer to get support for the latest camera(s). Canon Digital Photo Pro (DPP), EOS Utility, Photostitch and Lens Registration Utility are the options I manually include in the install.
- Attach the neck strap.
- Insert the battery (after charging completes).
- Power the camera on.
- Insert a memory card (don't forget to format the card via the tools menu option before taking pictures).
- Set the camera's mode to Av, Tv or M (some modes provide only a small subset of available menu options).
- Scroll through all of the menu tabs to configure the camera as follows:
- Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Image quality: Use top dial to set RAW to "RAW" and Rear Control dial to set JPEG to "-"
- Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Image review: 4 sec.
- Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Release shutter without card: Disable/off (this should be the default and I highly recommend turning this for-showrooms feature off)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 1: Lens aberration correction: All disabled (though I suggest leaving CA correction enabled for most uses – all can be applied in DPP)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 2: ISO Speed Settings: ISO Speed range: 100-H2(102400), Auto ISO Speed range: 100-40000
- Shooting Menu, Tab 2: White balance: AWB-W (Auto: White priority)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 3: Picture Style: Neutral with Sharpness Strength set to "1"
(Note: the low contrast "Neutral" picture style provides a histogram on the back of the camera that most-accurately shows me blown highlights and blocked shadows on the camera LCD.
I usually change the Picture Style to "Standard" in DPP after capture.)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 3: Long exposure noise reduction: I usually have this option set to "Auto", but my choice varies for the situation.
- Shooting Menu, Tab 3: High ISO speed noise reduction: Off (noise reduction is destructive to images details – I prefer to add NR sparingly in post)
- Playback Menu, Tab 3: Highlight alert: Enable (flash portions of images that are overexposed)
- Playback Menu, Tab 3: Histogram disp: RGB (I want to monitor all three color channels for blown or blocked pixels)
- Playback Menu, Tab 3: Magnification (apx): Actual size (from selected AF point)
- Tools Menu, Tab 1: Auto rotate: On/Computer only (this provides the largest playback image size on the camera LCD)
- Tools Menu, Tab 2: Date/Time/Zone: Use the Rear Control dial and the Set button to update this information.
- Tools Menu, Tab 2: Viewfinder display: Viewfinder level: Show, VF grid display: Show, Flicker detection: Show
- Tools Menu, Tab 3: Mode guide: Disable
- Tools Menu, Tab 3: Feature guide: Disable
- Tools Menu, Tab 4: Beep: Disable
- Tools Menu, Tab 5: Custom shooting mode (C1-C2): Auto update set: Enable (see also: Configuring Custom Shooting Modes)
- Tools Menu, Tab 5: Copyright information: Enter information as desired
- Custom Functions: C.Fn I:Exposure: Bracketing auto cancel: Disable
- Custom Functions: C.Fn II:Autofocus: AI servo 1st image priority: Focus
- Custom Functions: C.Fn II:Autofocus: AI servo 2nd image priority: Focus
- Custom Functions: C.Fn II:Autofocus: Orientation linked AF point: Separate AF pts: Pt only
- Custom Functions, C.Fn III:Operation/Others: 4 Custom Controls: AF-ON: One shot AI Servo; Multicontroller: Direct AF point selection
- My Menu: Add the first tab; Register the following options for Tab 1: Long exposure noise reduction, Mirror lockup, Format card, Date/Time/Zone (great for monitoring what time it is), Sensor cleaning, Expo.comp./AEB (back up near the top of the list)
I always make additional menu and setting changes based on current shooting scenarios, but the above list covers my initial camera setup process.
To copy this configuration means that you intend to shoot similar to how I shoot - including shooting in RAW-only format.
My setup works great for me, but your best use of this list may be for tweaking your own setup.
If you can't remember your own menu setup parameters, keeping an up-to-date list such as this one is a good idea.
Anytime your camera goes in for a service visit, the camera will be returned in a reset-to-factory state (unless you request otherwise).
Your list will ensure that you do not miss an important setting when putting the camera back into service.
Canon EOS 6D Mark II
The Canon EOS 6D Mark II
is in stock at B&H