RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Started 8 months ago | Discussions
AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
RX10 IV custom settings preferences
29

I have seen several threads with posts on custom settings but no thread dedicated to settings for the camera. I may have missed it but I searched on "RX10 IV settings" and manually scrolled through three weeks' posts without luck.

In some recent threads people have asked about settings so I thought I would start a thread on this topic. And note: this really should not be just about my settings as i) a lot of people have different requirements that the settings I will be describing do not address and ii) there must be ways to improve upon what I will be describing.

To set the ball rolling: I have two principle genres that account for far and away the majority of my photographs: Perched Birds and BIF. So the settings I will describe are for those situations.

1. Opening credit

I just recently migrated from Panasonic (FZ1000) to the RX10 IV, so I started with massive ignorance in what works with Sony's in general and this camera specifically. Horacecoker David has done some sterling work in this regard and my settings largely (totally?) mirror his, so he needs to get the credit for most/all of what I will be describing.

2. Camera characteristics

One of the biggest things that struck me is that one should be aware of the strengths and limitations of a camera to really get it set up acceptably well do do what you want it to. Some of the key considerations for me with the Mk IV:

* Its lens is very, very good wide open. I have not done any testing to allow me to categorically say that it is best wide open, but I really believe that is the case.

* The 1" sensor is way better than a 1/2.3" sensor at slightly elevated ISO's but it is no FF sensor. I personally feel that up to 400 ISO it is still great, 800 is fine and 1600 and up is best avoided unless there is no alternative.

* PDAF is a major innovation in this camera and one of its biggest strengths. For moving subjects you MUST ensure that you use PDAF.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in aiding tracking rapidly moving subjects and also to increase the probability of getting one or more really good images. I think it is essential for photographing rapid action/movement.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in generating masses of files in no time flat! In other words: use with care! I personally generally take rather short bursts, recompose (and gather my thoughts!) and do a next short burst. I frequently have <5 images in a burst and virtually always <10.

So without further ado: my settings for in flight and perched birds with some reasons / justifications why. And common to both is the fact that I use shot in JPG, 20MP extra fine and AF-C. I also have Steadyshot on: more about this later.

3. BIF

Principal requirements: high shutter speed for eliminating/reducing motion blur and minimising effect of camera shake. High burst rate for more chances at success and better tracking.

* Mode:

I use Aperture priority and selected F4 as I think this is very important to get the highest possible shutter speed and the best image quality: what's not to like about that combination? If needed I can always very quickly override the F4 setting by turning the control wheel on the lens.

A word of warning: you can very easily accidentally turn the aperture control wheel on the lens and end up with an aperture you were not expecting. Don't ask me how I know....

* Drive mode:

High speed burst mode (24FPS) is to my mind absolutely essential to allow you to better track rapidly moving birds.

* ISO:

I use auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400. If push comes to shove I can quickly override this as I have programmed the right hand position on the control wheel to change ISO.

There is an option to select the "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed": I selected "Faster" as I want to keep the shutter speed up for BIF.

* Focus area

I use "Wide" as I think it is practically impossible to keep a flying bird sufficiently close to the centre of the frame to ensure that the camera focuses on the bird and not something else. I have also found the camera's ability to discern and follow the bird in this mode to be very, very good.

* Metering

I have tried "Multi" but have now settled on Large Spot. With Large Spot hopefully I frequently have the subject in the spot to get good exposure. If not I am no worse off than with Multi.

Note that I find that metering with BIF requires manual intervention" in the form of EC quite often. The background (sky) is frequently significantly brighter than the subject so it is prudent to dial in some positive EC.

That about covers it. I have programmed this into Custom Memory 1 and this is the setup I normally use when I walk around.

The one thing that I need to experiment with is Steadyshot. I do not really think it helps under the rapid panning and my less-than-perfectly-smooth panning movement and I think it could introduce some blur. I need to run some testing on this.

Now for the next:

4. Perched birds

Principal requirements: This is actually a simplified situation compared to BIF. So no surprise: I modeled this on the BIF configuration and "dumbed it down" where applicable. Biggest changes are that tracking and rapid burst mode is not essential and it is important to have as small as possible focus area to avoid the effect of branches/twigs etc that get in the way.

* Mode:

After having used a different setting I thought about this again and came to the conclusion the the BIF configuration is actually pretty darn good for perched birds as well. SO I left it that way, ergo:

Aperture priority and F4. Same comments as before

* Drive mode:

Medium speed burst mode (10FPS). I consider using burst mode together with AF-C to be very important for ensuring you get good results. Reasons? Birds move: burst mode and AF-C minimises the potential blurry shots. Also: sometimes the camera misses the focus on the first shot. If it is your only shot you have a blurry image. If you use burst mode with AF-S you have several blurry images.

* ISO:

Based on what I did with my FZ1000 I plugged in ISO200 and left it there. Then, after I changed the ISO on the BIF setup I started wondering why I would not use the same. And could find no reason! So same as BIF: Auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400 with "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed"= Faster

* Focus area

This is where I digress from BIF. As mentioned I want the smallest possible focus area to ensure I focus on the bird and nothing else. Ergo: I use the smallest possible flexible spot in the middle of the frame. And I have never felt the need to move it.

* Metering

Another digression from BIF. I use Standard Spot as I am only interested in the exposure on the bird. I don't want to say I don't care about the rest of the frame.... but really I don't care about the rest of the frame!

I have programmed this into Custom Memory 2. I have also programmed this into Custom Hold 2 and assigned Custom Hold 2 to the "Focus hold" button on the lens. The reason for this is that I use the BIF setting for walking around and sometimes want to quickly go to the perched bird setting. Seeing as this happens quite often I wanted the easiest to use button to hold: Focus hold is it!

5. Other buttons:

* I use one other custom setting that I have programmed to Custom Memory 3: this is for general/landscape use. I have set up a similar configuration as Custom Hold 3 with the AEL button to access this. This is the second most common "hold" I will use so I programmed it to the second most comfortable button to press while using the shutter release.

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location. To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

* On the rear control wheel I have:

- Left: AF area

- Down: Burst mode

- Right: ISO

Phew, glad that is done. Will still have to check for errors and omissions. Logic errors and dumb mistakes expected!

-- hide signature --

Cheers
Alwyn

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
Panasonic FZ1000 Sony RX10 IV
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MedicineMan999
MedicineMan999 Senior Member • Posts: 1,342
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Alwyn, very well written and equally very well thought out. With the RX10iv luckily there are many ways to skin the proverbial. I will study your methods and see where I can improve. Thanks for posting.

 MedicineMan999's gear list:MedicineMan999's gear list
Canon PowerShot G1 X Olympus Tough TG-3 Sony RX100 III Panasonic FZ1000 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX80 +50 more
OP AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Thanks for the positive comments. I am looking forward to some suggestions for doing better!

-- hide signature --

Cheers
Alwyn

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
geoff-p Regular Member • Posts: 123
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Some good advice here for me as I'm trying to learn the camera via BIF & standing birds.

1. The Friedman archives book on the Mk4 has some good advice & many examples on custom settings. Well worth getting.

2. Have you tried automatic focus tracking for BIF. Quoting from the Friedman book:

  • Set your Fn Focus Area to anything BUT Lock-On AF
  • Set MENU 1 5 Center Lock-on AF to ON
  • Move the Focus Mode dial to "C" (Continuous) focusing mode.

I've had some limited success with this on slower moving BIFs

aodi
aodi Senior Member • Posts: 1,630
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Thank you Alwyn. Very helpful! You should write a book!:-)

Anatoli
www.transformingphoto.com

Horacecoker Senior Member • Posts: 1,977
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

AlwynS wrote:

I have seen several threads with posts on custom settings but no thread dedicated to settings for the camera. I may have missed it but I searched on "RX10 IV settings" and manually scrolled through three weeks' posts without luck.

In some recent threads people have asked about settings so I thought I would start a thread on this topic. And note: this really should not be just about my settings as i) a lot of people have different requirements that the settings I will be describing do not address and ii) there must be ways to improve upon what I will be describing.

To set the ball rolling: I have two principle genres that account for far and away the majority of my photographs: Perched Birds and BIF. So the settings I will describe are for those situations.

1. Opening credit

I just recently migrated from Panasonic (FZ1000) to the RX10 IV, so I started with massive ignorance in what works with Sony's in general and this camera specifically. Horacecoker David has done some sterling work in this regard and my settings largely (totally?) mirror his, so he needs to get the credit for most/all of what I will be describing.

2. Camera characteristics

One of the biggest things that struck me is that one should be aware of the strengths and limitations of a camera to really get it set up acceptably well do do what you want it to. Some of the key considerations for me with the Mk IV:

* Its lens is very, very good wide open. I have not done any testing to allow me to categorically say that it is best wide open, but I really believe that is the case.

* The 1" sensor is way better than a 1/2.3" sensor at slightly elevated ISO's but it is no FF sensor. I personally feel that up to 400 ISO it is still great, 800 is fine and 1600 and up is best avoided unless there is no alternative.

* PDAF is a major innovation in this camera and one of its biggest strengths. For moving subjects you MUST ensure that you use PDAF.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in aiding tracking rapidly moving subjects and also to increase the probability of getting one or more really good images. I think it is essential for photographing rapid action/movement.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in generating masses of files in no time flat! In other words: use with care! I personally generally take rather short bursts, recompose (and gather my thoughts!) and do a next short burst. I frequently have <5 images in a burst and virtually always <10.

So without further ado: my settings for in flight and perched birds with some reasons / justifications why. And common to both is the fact that I use shot in JPG, 20MP extra fine and AF-C. I also have Steadyshot on: more about this later.

3. BIF

Principal requirements: high shutter speed for eliminating/reducing motion blur and minimising effect of camera shake. High burst rate for more chances at success and better tracking.

* Mode:

I use Aperture priority and selected F4 as I think this is very important to get the highest possible shutter speed and the best image quality: what's not to like about that combination? If needed I can always very quickly override the F4 setting by turning the control wheel on the lens.

A word of warning: you can very easily accidentally turn the aperture control wheel on the lens and end up with an aperture you were not expecting. Don't ask me how I know....

* Drive mode:

High speed burst mode (24FPS) is to my mind absolutely essential to allow you to better track rapidly moving birds.

* ISO:

I use auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400. If push comes to shove I can quickly override this as I have programmed the right hand position on the control wheel to change ISO.

There is an option to select the "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed": I selected "Faster" as I want to keep the shutter speed up for BIF.

* Focus area

I use "Wide" as I think it is practically impossible to keep a flying bird sufficiently close to the centre of the frame to ensure that the camera focuses on the bird and not something else. I have also found the camera's ability to discern and follow the bird in this mode to be very, very good.

* Metering

I have tried "Multi" but have now settled on Large Spot. With Large Spot hopefully I frequently have the subject in the spot to get good exposure. If not I am no worse off than with Multi.

Note that I find that metering with BIF requires manual intervention" in the form of EC quite often. The background (sky) is frequently significantly brighter than the subject so it is prudent to dial in some positive EC.

That about covers it. I have programmed this into Custom Memory 1 and this is the setup I normally use when I walk around.

The one thing that I need to experiment with is Steadyshot. I do not really think it helps under the rapid panning and my less-than-perfectly-smooth panning movement and I think it could introduce some blur. I need to run some testing on this.

Now for the next:

4. Perched birds

Principal requirements: This is actually a simplified situation compared to BIF. So no surprise: I modeled this on the BIF configuration and "dumbed it down" where applicable. Biggest changes are that tracking and rapid burst mode is not essential and it is important to have as small as possible focus area to avoid the effect of branches/twigs etc that get in the way.

* Mode:

After having used a different setting I thought about this again and came to the conclusion the the BIF configuration is actually pretty darn good for perched birds as well. SO I left it that way, ergo:

Aperture priority and F4. Same comments as before

* Drive mode:

Medium speed burst mode (10FPS). I consider using burst mode together with AF-C to be very important for ensuring you get good results. Reasons? Birds move: burst mode and AF-C minimises the potential blurry shots. Also: sometimes the camera misses the focus on the first shot. If it is your only shot you have a blurry image. If you use burst mode with AF-S you have several blurry images.

* ISO:

Based on what I did with my FZ1000 I plugged in ISO200 and left it there. Then, after I changed the ISO on the BIF setup I started wondering why I would not use the same. And could find no reason! So same as BIF: Auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400 with "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed"= Faster

* Focus area

This is where I digress from BIF. As mentioned I want the smallest possible focus area to ensure I focus on the bird and nothing else. Ergo: I use the smallest possible flexible spot in the middle of the frame. And I have never felt the need to move it.

* Metering

Another digression from BIF. I use Standard Spot as I am only interested in the exposure on the bird. I don't want to say I don't care about the rest of the frame.... but really I don't care about the rest of the frame!

I have programmed this into Custom Memory 2. I have also programmed this into Custom Hold 2 and assigned Custom Hold 2 to the "Focus hold" button on the lens. The reason for this is that I use the BIF setting for walking around and sometimes want to quickly go to the perched bird setting. Seeing as this happens quite often I wanted the easiest to use button to hold: Focus hold is it!

5. Other buttons:

* I use one other custom setting that I have programmed to Custom Memory 3: this is for general/landscape use. I have set up a similar configuration as Custom Hold 3 with the AEL button to access this. This is the second most common "hold" I will use so I programmed it to the second most comfortable button to press while using the shutter release.

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location. To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

* On the rear control wheel I have:

- Left: AF area

- Down: Burst mode

- Right: ISO

Phew, glad that is done. Will still have to check for errors and omissions. Logic errors and dumb mistakes expected!

Excellent piece of work, Alwyn.

More or less all settings are the same as I use except focus area for static birds, I use Expand Flexible Spot. It's the only one that passes my branch test! 

David

 Horacecoker's gear list:Horacecoker's gear list
Sony RX100 III Sony RX10 IV Sony Alpha a7R III Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Sony FE 28mm F2
OP AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

geoff-p wrote:

Some good advice here for me as I'm trying to learn the camera via BIF & standing birds.

1. The Friedman archives book on the Mk4 has some good advice & many examples on custom settings. Well worth getting.

2. Have you tried automatic focus tracking for BIF. Quoting from the Friedman book:

  • Set your Fn Focus Area to anything BUT Lock-On AF
  • Set MENU 1 5 Center Lock-on AF to ON
  • Move the Focus Mode dial to "C" (Continuous) focusing mode.

I've had some limited success with this on slower moving BIFs

Hi Geoff

One of the MANY options I have not yet tried! Will have to give it a try: thanks

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
OP AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

aodi wrote:

Thank you Alwyn. Very helpful! You should write a book!:-)

Anatoli

Thanks Anatoli: it took me so much time to write this it almost FELT like a book! 

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
OP AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Horacecoker wrote:

Excellent piece of work, Alwyn.

More or less all settings are the same as I use except focus area for static birds, I use Expand Flexible Spot. It's the only one that passes my branch test!

David

Thanks David: as mentioned you should be the one getting the credit for the hard work: I just wrote it up! As for Spot vs Expand Flexible spot: I did try the Expand spot but somehow I feel more comfortable with regular spot. Maybe my FZ1000 background showing? And also admittedly I have not done much perched, semi-obscured birding shots yet (wrong time of year up here!) so I will have to keep an open mind here. The following are just about the only ones that are even close to that: spot worked quite well in these cases. But then again: no branches/twigs in front....

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
Horacecoker Senior Member • Posts: 1,977
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

AlwynS wrote:

geoff-p wrote:

Some good advice here for me as I'm trying to learn the camera via BIF & standing birds.

1. The Friedman archives book on the Mk4 has some good advice & many examples on custom settings. Well worth getting.

2. Have you tried automatic focus tracking for BIF. Quoting from the Friedman book:

  • Set your Fn Focus Area to anything BUT Lock-On AF
  • Set MENU 1 5 Center Lock-on AF to ON
  • Move the Focus Mode dial to "C" (Continuous) focusing mode.

I've had some limited success with this on slower moving BIFs

Hi Geoff

One of the MANY options I have not yet tried! Will have to give it a try: thanks

Doesn't work "During High Frame Rate shooting"

David

 Horacecoker's gear list:Horacecoker's gear list
Sony RX100 III Sony RX10 IV Sony Alpha a7R III Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Sony FE 28mm F2
geoff-p Regular Member • Posts: 123
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Horacecoker wrote:

AlwynS wrote:

geoff-p wrote:

Some good advice here for me as I'm trying to learn the camera via BIF & standing birds.

1. The Friedman archives book on the Mk4 has some good advice & many examples on custom settings. Well worth getting.

2. Have you tried automatic focus tracking for BIF. Quoting from the Friedman book:

  • Set your Fn Focus Area to anything BUT Lock-On AF
  • Set MENU 1 5 Center Lock-on AF to ON
  • Move the Focus Mode dial to "C" (Continuous) focusing mode.

I've had some limited success with this on slower moving BIFs

Hi Geoff

One of the MANY options I have not yet tried! Will have to give it a try: thanks

Doesn't work "During High Frame Rate shooting"

David

I've just tried it & you are correct David. Doesn't work during HFR.  That's a pity.  I'd only used it on single shot when it seems OK.

Horacecoker Senior Member • Posts: 1,977
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

AlwynS wrote:

Horacecoker wrote:

Excellent piece of work, Alwyn.

More or less all settings are the same as I use except focus area for static birds, I use Expand Flexible Spot. It's the only one that passes my branch test!

David

Thanks David: as mentioned you should be the one getting the credit for the hard work: I just wrote it up! As for Spot vs Expand Flexible spot: I did try the Expand spot but somehow I feel more comfortable with regular spot. Maybe my FZ1000 background showing? And also admittedly I have not done much perched, semi-obscured birding shots yet (wrong time of year up here!) so I will have to keep an open mind here. The following are just about the only ones that are even close to that: spot worked quite well in these cases. But then again: no branches/twigs in front....

'Expand Flexible Spot' will be no better than 'Flexible Spot - Small' if a small perched bird is part obscured my twigs and foliage. In fact it will be worse because it will probably nail the twigs. So you are doing the right thing by not using Expand Flexible Spot in this scenario.

With me it's different because (I think I've mentioned this before) I wouldn't be overly bothered about getting a shot of a small bird or any bird that was obscured by foliage to the extent I could only get the smallest flexible spot on the bird itself. I know, that's probably just me, it's the way I am. Except for that, I think Expand Flexible Spot is the best option because, after extensive testing, it is the only focus area mode that can actually 'see' (never mind focus on) out of focus subjects with very little contrast. That applies to small birds when in anything other than full sunshine in a lot of instances. It's one of the reasons I couldn't wait to get my hands on the RX10iv after owning the iii. It's also very reassuring to see the PDAF points dancing tightly round the small centre focus box. I just know the camera is using all the focusing aids and power it is blessed with.

David

 Horacecoker's gear list:Horacecoker's gear list
Sony RX100 III Sony RX10 IV Sony Alpha a7R III Sony FE 55mm F1.8 Sony FE 28mm F2
rarehip New Member • Posts: 14
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Excellent post. Very clear and inspiring. Just bought the rx10iv a day ago. Huge step up from my olde canon sx30 that is miserable with tracking.

Notechy Forum Member • Posts: 59
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

AlwynS wrote:

I have seen several threads with posts on custom settings but no thread dedicated to settings for the camera. I may have missed it but I searched on "RX10 IV settings" and manually scrolled through three weeks' posts without luck.

In some recent threads people have asked about settings so I thought I would start a thread on this topic. And note: this really should not be just about my settings as i) a lot of people have different requirements that the settings I will be describing do not address and ii) there must be ways to improve upon what I will be describing.

To set the ball rolling: I have two principle genres that account for far and away the majority of my photographs: Perched Birds and BIF. So the settings I will describe are for those situations.

1. Opening credit

I just recently migrated from Panasonic (FZ1000) to the RX10 IV, so I started with massive ignorance in what works with Sony's in general and this camera specifically. Horacecoker David has done some sterling work in this regard and my settings largely (totally?) mirror his, so he needs to get the credit for most/all of what I will be describing.

2. Camera characteristics

One of the biggest things that struck me is that one should be aware of the strengths and limitations of a camera to really get it set up acceptably well do do what you want it to. Some of the key considerations for me with the Mk IV:

* Its lens is very, very good wide open. I have not done any testing to allow me to categorically say that it is best wide open, but I really believe that is the case.

* The 1" sensor is way better than a 1/2.3" sensor at slightly elevated ISO's but it is no FF sensor. I personally feel that up to 400 ISO it is still great, 800 is fine and 1600 and up is best avoided unless there is no alternative.

* PDAF is a major innovation in this camera and one of its biggest strengths. For moving subjects you MUST ensure that you use PDAF.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in aiding tracking rapidly moving subjects and also to increase the probability of getting one or more really good images. I think it is essential for photographing rapid action/movement.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in generating masses of files in no time flat! In other words: use with care! I personally generally take rather short bursts, recompose (and gather my thoughts!) and do a next short burst. I frequently have <5 images in a burst and virtually always <10.

So without further ado: my settings for in flight and perched birds with some reasons / justifications why. And common to both is the fact that I use shot in JPG, 20MP extra fine and AF-C. I also have Steadyshot on: more about this later.

3. BIF

Principal requirements: high shutter speed for eliminating/reducing motion blur and minimising effect of camera shake. High burst rate for more chances at success and better tracking.

* Mode:

I use Aperture priority and selected F4 as I think this is very important to get the highest possible shutter speed and the best image quality: what's not to like about that combination? If needed I can always very quickly override the F4 setting by turning the control wheel on the lens.

A word of warning: you can very easily accidentally turn the aperture control wheel on the lens and end up with an aperture you were not expecting. Don't ask me how I know....

* Drive mode:

High speed burst mode (24FPS) is to my mind absolutely essential to allow you to better track rapidly moving birds.

* ISO:

I use auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400. If push comes to shove I can quickly override this as I have programmed the right hand position on the control wheel to change ISO.

There is an option to select the "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed": I selected "Faster" as I want to keep the shutter speed up for BIF.

* Focus area

I use "Wide" as I think it is practically impossible to keep a flying bird sufficiently close to the centre of the frame to ensure that the camera focuses on the bird and not something else. I have also found the camera's ability to discern and follow the bird in this mode to be very, very good.

* Metering

I have tried "Multi" but have now settled on Large Spot. With Large Spot hopefully I frequently have the subject in the spot to get good exposure. If not I am no worse off than with Multi.

Note that I find that metering with BIF requires manual intervention" in the form of EC quite often. The background (sky) is frequently significantly brighter than the subject so it is prudent to dial in some positive EC.

That about covers it. I have programmed this into Custom Memory 1 and this is the setup I normally use when I walk around.

The one thing that I need to experiment with is Steadyshot. I do not really think it helps under the rapid panning and my less-than-perfectly-smooth panning movement and I think it could introduce some blur. I need to run some testing on this.

Now for the next:

4. Perched birds

Principal requirements: This is actually a simplified situation compared to BIF. So no surprise: I modeled this on the BIF configuration and "dumbed it down" where applicable. Biggest changes are that tracking and rapid burst mode is not essential and it is important to have as small as possible focus area to avoid the effect of branches/twigs etc that get in the way.

* Mode:

After having used a different setting I thought about this again and came to the conclusion the the BIF configuration is actually pretty darn good for perched birds as well. SO I left it that way, ergo:

Aperture priority and F4. Same comments as before

* Drive mode:

Medium speed burst mode (10FPS). I consider using burst mode together with AF-C to be very important for ensuring you get good results. Reasons? Birds move: burst mode and AF-C minimises the potential blurry shots. Also: sometimes the camera misses the focus on the first shot. If it is your only shot you have a blurry image. If you use burst mode with AF-S you have several blurry images.

* ISO:

Based on what I did with my FZ1000 I plugged in ISO200 and left it there. Then, after I changed the ISO on the BIF setup I started wondering why I would not use the same. And could find no reason! So same as BIF: Auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400 with "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed"= Faster

* Focus area

This is where I digress from BIF. As mentioned I want the smallest possible focus area to ensure I focus on the bird and nothing else. Ergo: I use the smallest possible flexible spot in the middle of the frame. And I have never felt the need to move it.

* Metering

Another digression from BIF. I use Standard Spot as I am only interested in the exposure on the bird. I don't want to say I don't care about the rest of the frame.... but really I don't care about the rest of the frame!

I have programmed this into Custom Memory 2. I have also programmed this into Custom Hold 2 and assigned Custom Hold 2 to the "Focus hold" button on the lens. The reason for this is that I use the BIF setting for walking around and sometimes want to quickly go to the perched bird setting. Seeing as this happens quite often I wanted the easiest to use button to hold: Focus hold is it!

5. Other buttons:

* I use one other custom setting that I have programmed to Custom Memory 3: this is for general/landscape use. I have set up a similar configuration as Custom Hold 3 with the AEL button to access this. This is the second most common "hold" I will use so I programmed it to the second most comfortable button to press while using the shutter release.

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location. To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

* On the rear control wheel I have:

- Left: AF area

- Down: Burst mode

- Right: ISO

Phew, glad that is done. Will still have to check for errors and omissions. Logic errors and dumb mistakes expected!

I am finding this invaluable. But a word of warning to others, and a question for you Alwyn, or others.

i spent a disproportionate length of time on the custom buttons because I failed to grasp a key point. I saved my settings via Reg Cust Shoot Set on p4 of the first settings menu. I then expected buttons C1-3 to work. They did not. While I was aware of the Custom Key settings on p9 of the second menu, I thought that was only relevant to assigning those settings to alternative buttons. As you and most others know, it seems that it is necessary to assign the custom hold settings to custom buttons if those buttons are to be used for this purpose.

Now I am trying to assign Memory Recall to one of the 12 function options on the Fn button, via p9 on the second menu. But I cannot see Memory Recall as an option here, nor is it listed in the White book. Help please!

stuart

OP AlwynS Senior Member • Posts: 1,412
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences
3

Notechy wrote:

AlwynS wrote:

I have seen several threads with posts on custom settings but no thread dedicated to settings for the camera. I may have missed it but I searched on "RX10 IV settings" and manually scrolled through three weeks' posts without luck.

In some recent threads people have asked about settings so I thought I would start a thread on this topic. And note: this really should not be just about my settings as i) a lot of people have different requirements that the settings I will be describing do not address and ii) there must be ways to improve upon what I will be describing.

To set the ball rolling: I have two principle genres that account for far and away the majority of my photographs: Perched Birds and BIF. So the settings I will describe are for those situations.

1. Opening credit

I just recently migrated from Panasonic (FZ1000) to the RX10 IV, so I started with massive ignorance in what works with Sony's in general and this camera specifically. Horacecoker David has done some sterling work in this regard and my settings largely (totally?) mirror his, so he needs to get the credit for most/all of what I will be describing.

2. Camera characteristics

One of the biggest things that struck me is that one should be aware of the strengths and limitations of a camera to really get it set up acceptably well do do what you want it to. Some of the key considerations for me with the Mk IV:

* Its lens is very, very good wide open. I have not done any testing to allow me to categorically say that it is best wide open, but I really believe that is the case.

* The 1" sensor is way better than a 1/2.3" sensor at slightly elevated ISO's but it is no FF sensor. I personally feel that up to 400 ISO it is still great, 800 is fine and 1600 and up is best avoided unless there is no alternative.

* PDAF is a major innovation in this camera and one of its biggest strengths. For moving subjects you MUST ensure that you use PDAF.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in aiding tracking rapidly moving subjects and also to increase the probability of getting one or more really good images. I think it is essential for photographing rapid action/movement.

* The 24FPS burst mode is wonderful in generating masses of files in no time flat! In other words: use with care! I personally generally take rather short bursts, recompose (and gather my thoughts!) and do a next short burst. I frequently have <5 images in a burst and virtually always <10.

So without further ado: my settings for in flight and perched birds with some reasons / justifications why. And common to both is the fact that I use shot in JPG, 20MP extra fine and AF-C. I also have Steadyshot on: more about this later.

3. BIF

Principal requirements: high shutter speed for eliminating/reducing motion blur and minimising effect of camera shake. High burst rate for more chances at success and better tracking.

* Mode:

I use Aperture priority and selected F4 as I think this is very important to get the highest possible shutter speed and the best image quality: what's not to like about that combination? If needed I can always very quickly override the F4 setting by turning the control wheel on the lens.

A word of warning: you can very easily accidentally turn the aperture control wheel on the lens and end up with an aperture you were not expecting. Don't ask me how I know....

* Drive mode:

High speed burst mode (24FPS) is to my mind absolutely essential to allow you to better track rapidly moving birds.

* ISO:

I use auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400. If push comes to shove I can quickly override this as I have programmed the right hand position on the control wheel to change ISO.

There is an option to select the "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed": I selected "Faster" as I want to keep the shutter speed up for BIF.

* Focus area

I use "Wide" as I think it is practically impossible to keep a flying bird sufficiently close to the centre of the frame to ensure that the camera focuses on the bird and not something else. I have also found the camera's ability to discern and follow the bird in this mode to be very, very good.

* Metering

I have tried "Multi" but have now settled on Large Spot. With Large Spot hopefully I frequently have the subject in the spot to get good exposure. If not I am no worse off than with Multi.

Note that I find that metering with BIF requires manual intervention" in the form of EC quite often. The background (sky) is frequently significantly brighter than the subject so it is prudent to dial in some positive EC.

That about covers it. I have programmed this into Custom Memory 1 and this is the setup I normally use when I walk around.

The one thing that I need to experiment with is Steadyshot. I do not really think it helps under the rapid panning and my less-than-perfectly-smooth panning movement and I think it could introduce some blur. I need to run some testing on this.

Now for the next:

4. Perched birds

Principal requirements: This is actually a simplified situation compared to BIF. So no surprise: I modeled this on the BIF configuration and "dumbed it down" where applicable. Biggest changes are that tracking and rapid burst mode is not essential and it is important to have as small as possible focus area to avoid the effect of branches/twigs etc that get in the way.

* Mode:

After having used a different setting I thought about this again and came to the conclusion the the BIF configuration is actually pretty darn good for perched birds as well. SO I left it that way, ergo:

Aperture priority and F4. Same comments as before

* Drive mode:

Medium speed burst mode (10FPS). I consider using burst mode together with AF-C to be very important for ensuring you get good results. Reasons? Birds move: burst mode and AF-C minimises the potential blurry shots. Also: sometimes the camera misses the focus on the first shot. If it is your only shot you have a blurry image. If you use burst mode with AF-S you have several blurry images.

* ISO:

Based on what I did with my FZ1000 I plugged in ISO200 and left it there. Then, after I changed the ISO on the BIF setup I started wondering why I would not use the same. And could find no reason! So same as BIF: Auto ISO with minimum 100 and maximum 400 with "Auto ISO minimum shutter speed"= Faster

* Focus area

This is where I digress from BIF. As mentioned I want the smallest possible focus area to ensure I focus on the bird and nothing else. Ergo: I use the smallest possible flexible spot in the middle of the frame. And I have never felt the need to move it.

* Metering

Another digression from BIF. I use Standard Spot as I am only interested in the exposure on the bird. I don't want to say I don't care about the rest of the frame.... but really I don't care about the rest of the frame!

I have programmed this into Custom Memory 2. I have also programmed this into Custom Hold 2 and assigned Custom Hold 2 to the "Focus hold" button on the lens. The reason for this is that I use the BIF setting for walking around and sometimes want to quickly go to the perched bird setting. Seeing as this happens quite often I wanted the easiest to use button to hold: Focus hold is it!

5. Other buttons:

* I use one other custom setting that I have programmed to Custom Memory 3: this is for general/landscape use. I have set up a similar configuration as Custom Hold 3 with the AEL button to access this. This is the second most common "hold" I will use so I programmed it to the second most comfortable button to press while using the shutter release.

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location. To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

* On the rear control wheel I have:

- Left: AF area

- Down: Burst mode

- Right: ISO

Phew, glad that is done. Will still have to check for errors and omissions. Logic errors and dumb mistakes expected!

I am finding this invaluable. But a word of warning to others, and a question for you Alwyn, or others.

i spent a disproportionate length of time on the custom buttons because I failed to grasp a key point. I saved my settings via Reg Cust Shoot Set on p4 of the first settings menu. I then expected buttons C1-3 to work. They did not. While I was aware of the Custom Key settings on p9 of the second menu, I thought that was only relevant to assigning those settings to alternative buttons. As you and most others know, it seems that it is necessary to assign the custom hold settings to custom buttons if those buttons are to be used for this purpose.

Indeed: sorry if I did not make that clear.

Now I am trying to assign Memory Recall to one of the 12 function options on the Fn button, via p9 on the second menu. But I cannot see Memory Recall as an option here, nor is it listed in the White book. Help please!

stuart

First off to programme this you have to have the mode dial set to the "MR" position. I think this might be your problem. Then you have to configure the Fn button.... and I did this so long ago that I cannot recall exactly what the Fn items were out of the box! But I do know that I set the first option that comes up by default (Function Upper 1) is "Shoot mode" and that works!

To programme the function button: press menu, go to Camera Settings 2, page 9 of 10 and go to the "Function menu set" option.

Hope this helps...

 AlwynS's gear list:AlwynS's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P610 Sony RX10 IV
Notechy Forum Member • Posts: 59
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Thank you so much Alwyn.

No place for apologies, everyone else seems to cope with or without your assistance.

Will  return to the function setting in the morning. Having the dial in MR first looks like the answer.

Much gratitude.

Stuart

tbcass
tbcass Forum Pro • Posts: 36,754
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

For stationary birds using DMF which is AF-S with the option to manually focus might be useful.

-- hide signature --

Tom
Look at the picture, not the pixels

 tbcass's gear list:tbcass's gear list
Sony RX100 Sony RX10 IV Sony a99 II Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di Macro Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM +9 more
JohnTheKeenAmateur
JohnTheKeenAmateur Regular Member • Posts: 153
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences
1

AlwynS wrote:

< snip >

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location.

To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

This is an especially useful tip - - including for those not necessarily following Alwyn's settings for bird shots.

That is, for emphasis:  rather than use the mode-dial on top of the camera to select Memory Recall, do as Alwyn suggests and assign Shoot Mode to the first of the 12 options that come up when the Fn button is pressed (configurable via the "Function Menu set" option in menu settings) ... I find it much easier to switch between custom configs this way, whilst being able to keep one's eye on the EVF.

Another benefit to using Memory Recall is that ALL settings are re-set when each memory configuration is recalled. Eg. Alwyn spoke about using specific ISO settings for his BIF configuration - but, perhaps he took a shot where he meant to only temporarily use a higher ISO BUT then forgot to set it back to his lower-range (I know I've made similar mistakes !).

By recalling his "BIF" configuration, via Memory Recall, his preferred ISO setting (and any other settings) will be restored ... he doesn't need to remember to undo temporary changes.

Note:  Inspired by this post, I have posted settings relevant to travel/street photography; See here

 JohnTheKeenAmateur's gear list:JohnTheKeenAmateur's gear list
Sony RX10 II Sony SLT-A55 Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM Tamron 10-24mm F3.5-4.5 (B023)
PMUK
PMUK Regular Member • Posts: 145
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

Fantastic! I’ve been looking at how to switch between MR set-ups without having to keep using the Mode Dial so this pointer was very welcome. Some great tips in both your posts. Thanks are due to AlwynS and John (the keen amateur).

Phil

 PMUK's gear list:PMUK's gear list
Canon G7 X II Sony RX10 IV Canon EOS 70D Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM +4 more
HugoMontenegro New Member • Posts: 1
Re: RX10 IV custom settings preferences

The overall information is valuable and good, I only have two concerns (I apologise if these have been addressed already, there are many comments....):

AlwynS wrote:

:

:

* Because I quite often want to jump between custom configurations I have programmed Memory Recall into the first Fn button location. To switch between configurations I press the Fn button, press enter (to select memory recall), scroll left or right to memory 1, 2 or 3 and press enter.

I don't get this, I cannot find the "Memory Recall" to be assigned to any field in the Fn menu.

* On the rear control wheel I have:

- Left: AF area

- Down: Burst mode

It would be even more helpful if the description of your settings would use the same terminology as appears in the camera settings display. "AF area" and "Burst mode" are not the terms that Sony uses and sometimes it takes a while before I understand what you mean...

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