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Author Topic: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks  (Read 25698 times)

Jack Douglas

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I hope I'm not alone in this request but having just received my 1DX II and run through the menu I feel quite overwhelmed and in need of some guidance.  I've been primarily a 6D shooter for 3 years with just a brief 1D II and then 1D4 exposure; these were purchased to allow me to see if I could handle the weight/size.

Perhaps those who feel confident with the camera or know certain things that come from the 1DX that still apply here, would be willing to offer advice.  Also, those feeling somewhat like me may wish to ask questions as well and maybe we can all learn and share our experiences.

Of course as beginners we can muddle our way through but we might end up acquiring poor habits.  I could start by asking for good ways of configuring the buttons.  I've been using AF-ON for BB focus on the 6D so I've already set that up, but how do you quickly select AF points, etc. etc.

I'd like to see video suggestions as well.  Such a shame not to do at least a little video with such a capable camera.

Links to reference materials could be helpful too.

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Jack Douglas

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
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1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Eldar

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2016, 01:32:07 AM »
Jack,
I am sure you can find (and you have found some) guidance from others on how they set up the camera. However, I do not believe there is a sensible copy-and-be-happy approach. You need to figure out how to set it up for your need.

Personally I am not even close to using the camera to its fullest potential and I only master a minor part of its functional capabilities. My approach has been to think critically on what I need and what suits me. The most important being:

I use the AF-On button to activate one-shot in servo mode and not for BB focus.
I select number of AF points with the AF point selector (activate) and the front wheel (select).
I change ISO settings with the set button(activate) and the back wheel (select).
All other buttons are kept with their default functionality.

When it comes to all the internal settings, I do not believe there is a one package fits all option. You must spend time trying to understand what they do. In principle, you do nothing wrong by leaving them in their default position and then do them one by one as your experience grows.

One thing I am missing or have not been able to figure out, is how I can dial in exposure compensation in manual mode, without taking my eye away from the viewer. Currently I have to look at the display and it annoys me. If someone know if/how this can be done, I'd be happy.

As a sidenote, my camera fell on rocks the other day, so the mirror housing is damaged and the sensor is out of position ...  >:(
« Last Edit: October 14, 2016, 01:48:14 AM by Eldar »
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Ryananthony

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2016, 01:52:11 AM »
Jack,
I am sure you can find (and you have found some) guidance from others on how they set up the camera. However, I do not believe there is a sensible copy-and-be-happy approach. You need to figure out how to set it up for your need.

Personally I am not even close to using the camera to its fullest potential and I only master a minor part of its functional capabilities. My approach has been to think critically on what I need and what suits me. The most important being:

I use the AF-On button to activate one-shot in servo mode and not for BB focus.
I select number of AF points with the AF point selector (activate) and the front wheel (select).
I change ISO settings with the set button(activate) and the back wheel (select).
All other buttons are kept with their default functionality.

When it comes to all the internal settings, I do not believe there is a one package fits all option. You must spend time trying to understand what they do. In principle, you do nothing wrong by leaving them in their default position and then do them one by one as your experience grows.

One thing I am missing or have not been able to figure out, is how I can dial in exposure compensation in manual mode, without taking my eye away from the viewer. Currently I have to look at the display and it annoys me. If someone know if/how this can be done, I'd be happy.

As a sidenote, my camera fell on rocks the other day, so the mirror housing is damaged and the sensor is out of position ...  >:(


One thing that I found helpful when I upgraded to a 5d3 was to run through the custom functions every few weeks or a month of shooting. I started noticing things that would work better for my shooting, things that will take time to notice. I plan on doing the same when I receive my new to me 1dx next week.

unfocused

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2016, 01:55:34 AM »
I'm also very interested in this topic. I just never feel like I'm using the auto-focus to its full advantage and I'd love to hear tips from others who use it for either sports or birds-in-flight.

As for configuration: I'm a back-button autofocus guy all the way. I switched the little star button in back to toggle between AIFocus and One Shot, but I'm not sure I'll keep that setting (I find myself inadvertently switching to One Shot in the middle of games and missing shots). Like Eldar, I select the number of AF points with the AF point selector (activate) and the front wheel (select).

Probably the biggest thing I did was reconfigure the "Q" settings. The back of my screen now shows: Mode; Shutter Speed; ISO; White Balance; Exposure Compensation; External Speedlite Control; Flash Exposure Compensation; AIServo/One Shot; Drive Mode; Record Function/Card Selection; Raw/JPG; and the number and position of AF points (That one actually takes up six of the little boxes, but I find it very handy to be able to glance at the back of the camera and instantly know the autofocus points, before I even put the viewfinder to my eyes). The exact selection really doesn't matter, but I would encourage anyone to play around with the Q menu settings to get exactly what you need to access the most on the screen. It can significantly reduce the need to go into the menu system.

I'm not a huge 'button configurer' and I agree with the advice to just use it for awhile and make changes as you feel the need or want to experiment. One of the other things I really love about the 1DX II is that you can save your menu settings to a card, so when you send the camera in for a cleaning or whatever, you can simply reload all the settings from a card after Canon resets them to the defaults.

As I said, I'm mostly interested in how others use the autofocus system and what they've found that works and doesn't work.

fentiger

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2016, 02:30:45 AM »
The big thing about the 1Dx2 is the amount and variation of customisation that can be done!!
say you set up C1 for bif, back focus ect you can set C2,C3, for other scenarios.
i think you can also set Tv,Av, and M to how you like. I've only had mine for 5 weeks and theres soooo much to learn, the best advice i can give you Jack is to go out and shoot and play with it.
its also been mentioned by neuro on another thread that you can save settings to cards, so the possibilities are huge, but as Eldar has said it won't balance by itself on rocks, i feel your pain Eldar  :'(   
1DX11 EF400 2.8, EF35 1.4ll, EF24 1.4ll,  EF24-70ll, EF70-200 2.8ll,

Jack Douglas

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2016, 03:34:50 AM »
Ryananthony, I agree.  The only problem is that at the start one doesn't fully understand what a setting or change does and it can be hard to correlate a choice in setting to an output result.  Still do what you suggest is a great review.

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2016, 03:34:50 AM »

Jack Douglas

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2016, 03:42:54 AM »
Jack,
I am sure you can find (and you have found some) guidance from others on how they set up the camera. However, I do not believe there is a sensible copy-and-be-happy approach. You need to figure out how to set it up for your need.

Personally I am not even close to using the camera to its fullest potential and I only master a minor part of its functional capabilities. My approach has been to think critically on what I need and what suits me. The most important being:

I use the AF-On button to activate one-shot in servo mode and not for BB focus.
I select number of AF points with the AF point selector (activate) and the front wheel (select).
I change ISO settings with the set button(activate) and the back wheel (select).
All other buttons are kept with their default functionality.

When it comes to all the internal settings, I do not believe there is a one package fits all option. You must spend time trying to understand what they do. In principle, you do nothing wrong by leaving them in their default position and then do them one by one as your experience grows.

One thing I am missing or have not been able to figure out, is how I can dial in exposure compensation in manual mode, without taking my eye away from the viewer. Currently I have to look at the display and it annoys me. If someone know if/how this can be done, I'd be happy.

As a sidenote, my camera fell on rocks the other day, so the mirror housing is damaged and the sensor is out of position ...  >:(

Thanks Eldar.  It's so bad that I shot a BIF and it should hjave been in focus but wasn't - I couldn't get out of one-shot even though I thought I had the BB configured like my 6D.  I've liked having one-shot as default when AF-ON is released, assuming that's actually "one-shot".  I would like a quick way to move AF around and also change configurations if possible with one button push.  I know, I'm pushing too hard initially and just getting confused.

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Jack Douglas

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2016, 03:50:33 AM »
unfocused, I've liked the Q function on the 6D and agree with you.  Tonight I also set up "My Menu" and managed to upgrade the firmware.  Formatted the card and loaded the .fir and it wouldn't work.  Finally figured out that I had to delete the two folders that the format created so the .fir file sat alone.

I'll check out your suggestions later since it's now nearly 2 AM and I'll try to give some feedback on what I sort out eventually too.  There are quite a few making suggestions on web sites and often they seem to conflict.

Also I just learned (duh) that the video menu comes up only when you switch on video and so now I have all those options to look at.  I know little bits are falling into place but it sure doesn't feel like that! :(

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Jack Douglas

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2016, 03:57:02 AM »
BTW my 400 X2 shots look pathetic even when the focus seemed to lock and my heart started to sink.  Fortunately, I have my dragons that were 6D with 400 X2 and MF.  These are fine at not much over MFD wouldn't you say??  So tomorrow it's AFMA checking and setting.

I wonder if 1/1000 is marginal for action with 400 X2??, anyone.  And of course it had to be a cloudy day with higher ISOs, so lots of grain with cropping.

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Jack Douglas

  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II
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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2016, 04:11:07 AM »
Here is another link that might be helpful from 5 months ago.

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4002979

Jack
1DX2   11-24 F4   24-70 F4   70-200 F2.8 II   300 F2.8 II   1.4X III   2X III   400 DO F4 II 

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Eldar

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2016, 04:44:32 AM »
Thanks Eldar.  It's so bad that I shot a BIF and it should hjave been in focus but wasn't - I couldn't get out of one-shot even though I thought I had the BB configured like my 6D.  I've liked having one-shot as default when AF-ON is released, assuming that's actually "one-shot".  I would like a quick way to move AF around and also change configurations if possible with one button push.  I know, I'm pushing too hard initially and just getting confused.

Jack
If you change to be in AF Servo, as default, and use the BB as toggle to One Shot, you'll have an easier life with things that move.

For moving AF points, press the top right button, to activate selected AF points and use the joy stick to move it around.
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kaihp

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2016, 04:57:13 AM »
As a sidenote, my camera fell on rocks the other day, so the mirror housing is damaged and the sensor is out of position ...  >:(

Noooooooooo! So sorry to hear that for you, Eldar. Well, at least it happened after you got home from Tanzania  :-\

Thanks for putting up your customizations; besides BBF I haven't done anything to my Mark I, but I should consider the one-shot vs Servo. I'll also be eagerly listening if anyone has a solution to the EC-in-Manual setup.

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2016, 04:57:13 AM »

arthurbikemad

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2016, 05:17:56 AM »
As said by many the options depend on the person's needs, the main things for me are AI serv and One Shot on the second function button, enable point selection by joy stick, set ISO on center button so can scroll ISO on top wheel, or set center button to set Exp Comp in M mode (most of time for me), set C modes as needed, turn off fire with no card, setup Q menu and screens, I set one menu for Flash, one for Video and so on. So many custom options :)

ethanz

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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2016, 10:19:44 AM »

One thing I am missing or have not been able to figure out, is how I can dial in exposure compensation in manual mode, without taking my eye away from the viewer. Currently I have to look at the display and it annoys me. If someone know if/how this can be done, I'd be happy.

As a sidenote, my camera fell on rocks the other day, so the mirror housing is damaged and the sensor is out of position ...  >:(

I'm wondering that too Eldar!

I guess the camera isn't as indestructible as I thought.

Even though I read through the manual, I didn't figure out until four months later how to change the AF point type...
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Re: 1DX Mark II - getting the most out of the camera, tips and tricks
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2016, 10:19:44 AM »