The Canon EOS R7 is here, and it is time to set up this camera for use.
Following are the 48 steps taken to prepare an out-of-the-box EOS R7 for use.
- Record serial number and add camera to insurance policy
- Open the box, find the battery, place it in the charger, and plug it in.
- While the battery is charging, unpack the other items you want from the box.
- Not required, but consider downloading and installing the latest Canon imaging software
to get support for the latest camera model(s).
Canon Digital Photo Pro (DPP), EOS Utility, and Lens Registration Utility are the options I manually include in the install.
- Attach the neck strap (if using).
- Insert a memory card (we'll format the card in a later step), insert a charged battery, and power the camera on.
- The date, time, and time zone setup screen will show at the first startup. Use the rear control dial and set button to update this information.
- Set the camera's mode to Av, Tv, or M (some modes may provide only a 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 the top control dial to set RAW to "RAW", and use the rear control dial to set JPEG to "-" (RAW image files provide the highest quality and are especially valuable for post-processing work)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 2: Auto Lighting Optimizer: Off
- Shooting Menu, Tab 4: White balance: AWB W (White) (I seldom use another white balance setting while shooting, though I often adjust white balance modestly during post-processing)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 4: Picture Style: Neutral with Sharpness = 1 (Note: the low contrast "Neutral" picture style provides a histogram that best shows the available dynamic range. I usually change the Picture Style to "Standard" in DPP after capture.)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 5: Lens Aberration Correction: All options "OFF" (I suggest that most photographers enable Chromatic Aberration correction)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 5: High ISO speed NR: Low (noise reduction is destructive to images details - I prefer to add noise reduction sparingly during post-processing)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 7: Release shutter without card: OFF (only in a retail store would you want to press the shutter release without saving the image file)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 8: Auto Level: Enable (rotates the sensor to keep the image level)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 8: Image review: Review duration: 4 sec. (the Viewfinder review option is disabled by default, speeding the shooting process)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 9: Shooting info. disp.: Screen info. settings: Enable 1, 2, 3, and 4; edit screen 2 to show only: Basic shooting info and Electronic level; edit screen 3 to show only: Basic shooting info, Histogram, and Electronic level
- Shooting Menu, Tab 9: Shooting info. disp.: VF info/toggle setting: Enable 1, 2, and 3 (default); edit screen 2 to show only: Electronic level; edit screen 3 to show only: Histogram and Electronic level
- Shooting Menu, Tab 9: Shooting info. disp.: Grid display: 3x3 (sometimes the 3x3 grid is helpful for alignment checking while not complicating the view)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 9: Shooting info. disp.: Histogram disp: RGB, Small (show the brightness levels of each channel separately and do not let the graph to take up much space in the display as it can affect the perceived composition)
- Shooting Menu, Tab 9: Disp performance: * select Smooth if shooting fast action and battery life is not a concern. Select Power saving otherwise.
- AF Menu, Tab 1: Subject to detect: Select People, Animals, or No priority as makes sense for your current shooting scenario
- AF Menu, Tab 4: Touch & drag AF settings: Touch & drag AF: Enable (allows the thumb drag across the rear LCD to quickly move the AF point while looking through the electronic viewfinder)
- AF Menu, Tab 4: Limit AF methods: enable Spot AF, 1-point AF, Whole area AF
- AF Menu, Tab 4: Orientation linked AF point: Separate AF pts: Pt only (instructs the camera to individually save the selected AF points for vertical and horizontal orientation)
- AF Menu, Tab 5: MF peaking settings: Peaking: On
- AF Menu, Tab 6: RF lens MF focus ring sensitivity: Linked to rotation degree
- Playback Menu, Tab 5: Magnify (apx): 10x (allows one button press during playback to zoom deeply into the image)
- Playback Menu, Tab 6: Playback information display: 1, 2, and 3 only; change view 2 histogram to RGB
- Playback Menu, Tab 6: Highlight Alert: Enable (overexposed pixels will blink during image review)
- Wireless Menu, Tab 1: Airplane mode: On (turn off wireless when not in use)
- Tools Menu, Tab 1: Format card (always format a memory card in-camera before using it - all data on the card will be lost)
- Tools Menu, Tab 1: Auto Rotate: On computer (images are properly rotated when viewed on a computer, but are always oriented to fill the LCD when viewed on the camera)
- Tools Menu, Tab 2: Mode guide: Disable
- Tools Menu, Tab 3: Beep: Disable (probably no one wants to hear your camera's beep)
- Tools Menu, Tab 6: Custom shooting mode (C1, C2, C3): Auto update set: Enable (see Configuring Custom Shooting Modes)
- Tools Menu, Tab 6: Copyright information: enter as desired
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 1: Bracketing auto cancel: OFF (I want to control when AEB (Auto Exposure Bracketing) is enabled and disabled)
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 1: Bracketing sequence: -0+ (if images are captured in brightness sequence, they are easier to work with during post-processing. Capturing the darkest image first means quickly getting the first frame)
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 3: Customize buttons:
M-Fn: Dial Function settings (press Info): turn off ISO (there is a dedicated button), turn off white balance, turn off flash exposure compensation, enable exposure compensation, enable AF area
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 3: Customize dials: Control ring: OFF (consider using this dial for a function logical for your needs)
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 4: Default erase option: [Erase] selected (less safe, but one less button press required to delete an image)
- Custom Functions Menu, Tab 4: Retract lens on power off: OFF (prevents a carefully-selected focus distance from resetting when the camera auto powers off)
- My Menu: Add My Menu 1; Register the following options: Expo.comp./AEB, IS (Image Stabilizer) mode, Display simulation, Subject to detect, Format card, Date/Time/Zone (great for monitoring the time); reorder menu items as desired
- My Menu: Add My Menu 2; Register the following options: Anti-flicker shoot., Focus bracketing, Shutter mode, Disp. performance, Sensor cleaning, Number of bracketed shots, reorder menu items as desired
- With a lens mounted and a subject focused on, adjust the viewfinder diopter until the scene is sharp
I make additional menu and other setting changes based on current shooting scenarios, but this list covers my initial camera setup process.
To copy this configuration means you intend to shoot as I do - including in RAW-only format.
While this setup works great for me, you should adjust the setup to your needs.
If you can't remember your menu setup parameters, keeping an up-to-date list such as this one is a great idea.
Anytime the camera is set to the factory state, such as when being serviced or when acquiring an additonal camera, you will be ready to create your setup quickly, while ensuring that an important setting is not omitted.
If you purchase another same or similar camera, setup will be fast and identical.
Canon EOS R7
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