Like on most modern DSLRs on the EOS 1100D the rear LCD does not only give you an overview of the current shooting parameters but also provides, in addition to the camera's hard buttons and controls, another way of interacting with the settings.
The 'Camera settings' display gives you a comprehensive overview of the currently applied settings. As an entry-level DSLR the 1100D does not come with a top-LCD which makes this display much more useful than on some enthusiast or professional models. You can switch this view off by pressing the DISP button or enter the Q-menu by pressing the Q-button.
Quick Control screen
In the 'Creative Zone' exposure modes (P, Av, Tv, M and A-DEP), pressing the Q button 'activates' the status screen and allows you to change any of the displayed parameters.
The Shooting functions/Q Menu screen lists the key shooting parameters. Once you've navigated to one of them you can either spin the control dial to change it...
...or, if you want to see all its options, you can press the Set button and be taken to another screen listing all the possible settings.
'Basic+' control Screens
The EOS 1100D gains the easy-to-use interface that has become increasingly sophisticated on recent EOS cameras. And, to be honest, it makes most sense on this, the company's entry-level model. As well as the Creative Auto mode that gives simple, results-orientated input into an otherwise automated mode, there are also the Basic+ options that first appeared on the EOS 60D. This allows the user to choose their chosen 'ambience' and specify the type of lighting being used for images taken in the scene modes, to allow control of the image processing settings and the white balance.
Once in a scene mode you can change the 'ambience' or 'lighting type' of the photo. The ambience setting changes the colour processing to one of a series of presets, while Lighting Type changes the white balance.
In Creative Auto mode you can also control the aperture but again avoiding technical terminology. Here is the 'background blur' scale with optional on-screen hints to explain how it should be used.
You can specify the 'ambience' you wish to apply to the scene modes, including options such as 'cool' and 'intense.'
Live View/Movie Displays
Pressing the DISP button while in Live View toggles between the four available display modes, each with differing levels of overlaid information. As with previous models you can also add grid lines and choose to use 'Exposure Simulation' (which will attempt to reflect the brightness of the photo using the current exposure settings).
1: Live view with magnification area indicated + status line showing shutter speed, aperture, exposure compensation, frames remaining, ISO sensitivity and battery status.
2: Live view with magnification area + status line + brief overlay (Picture Style, AF mode, drive mode, white balance, image quality)
3: Live view with magnification area + status line + brief overlay + live histogram
4: Live view with magnification area (and nothing else)
Record review & play displays
The playback screens are absolutely standard Canon, with the review image shown with various amounts of shooting information.
1: Large image, no overlay
2: Large image + basic info + image number
3: Small image + lum histogram + detailed shooting info
4: Small image + status line + lum histogram + RGB histogram + detailed shooting info
Like the EOS 60D the 1100D offers the ability to tag each of your images with a 'Star' rating. These can then be used to find and filter your images or as a criterion for setting up slide shows. Once applied to images, these tags are also accessible through the supplied Digital Photo Professional software or third-party packages such as Adobe Bridge and Lightroom.