Top display purpose

Started 10 months ago | Discussions
ncsakany
ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Top display purpose
5

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

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TreeForest Forum Member • Posts: 69
Re: Top display purpose
4

I use it to get a quick overview of the state of the camera (including battery and space left on chip) when I am not shooting. For example, in between shots when it's at my side on the wrist strap, I can just look down and see if everything is ready for the next shot.

There are other ways to do that, so it's not necessary, but it is convenient.

Droster Regular Member • Posts: 340
Re: Top display purpose
3

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

The same with all top displays; show you the information before you have the camera to your eye.

Some people prefer to change their settings before bringing up the camera to their eyes to start shooting.

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SrMi
SrMi Contributing Member • Posts: 841
Re: Top display purpose
1

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

What do you mean by "inability to completely turn off information display"?

My camera is mostly in "Prioritize viewfinder" mode where the rear LCD is off except for menu and review. Even if the rear LCD would be on, I find it more convenient to glance at the top display instead of rear LCD. Happy to see it included in recently launched m43 (G9) and APS-C (Fujix X-H1) cameras as well.

ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Re: Top display purpose

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

What do you mean by "inability to completely turn off information display"?

There is no setting to not show any information on displays.

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ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Thanks to all who responded

Guess its a workflow preference. I was just wondering if I was missing anything else.

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SrMi
SrMi Contributing Member • Posts: 841
Re: Top display purpose

ncsakany wrote:

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

What do you mean by "inability to completely turn off information display"?

There is no setting to not show any information on displays.

"Prioritize viewfinder" mode does not show any information on the rear LCD. Did I misunderstand you?

ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Re: Top display purpose

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

What do you mean by "inability to completely turn off information display"?

There is no setting to not show any information on displays.

"Prioritize viewfinder" mode does not show any information on the rear LCD. Did I misunderstand you?

It turns the rear display off. I meant having it on, with the live view, but no information overlay.

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bhollis
bhollis Veteran Member • Posts: 3,850
Re: Top display purpose
5

ncsakany wrote:

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

SrMi wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

What do you mean by "inability to completely turn off information display"?

There is no setting to not show any information on displays.

"Prioritize viewfinder" mode does not show any information on the rear LCD. Did I misunderstand you?

It turns the rear display off. I meant having it on, with the live view, but no information overlay.

The purpose of the top display is to allow you to review your settings at a glance without having to turn on the rear display.

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JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 25,454
Another vote for the top display
8

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

Count me as a top display proponent. I missed (and railed at) its MILC demise on the a7x cameras, and welcomed its return on the GFX 50S. Especially with Nikon's "push the button and twist the dials" mode changing (and the aforesaid buttons being for the most part on the top of the camera), it's very useful to be able to look down at the top of the camera and perform the necessary adjustments.

In many candid situations, it is not conducive to good pictures to have to continually bring the camera to your eye, or even raise it from waist level, until you are ready to make the exposure. The top display facilitates this. I wish Nikon had taken a page from Fuji's book and made the display visible when the power is off, but that would have been just icing on the cake.

Jim

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ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Re: Another vote for the top display

Gotcha, thanks.

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tommiejeep
tommiejeep Veteran Member • Posts: 6,799
Re: Another vote for the top display

I agree and also find it very useful when shooting multiple cameras with different lenses for different types of shots.

A question, and I did do a quick run through of the PDF manual, can you still get the top display to light up using the on off switch? I use a lot for low light events.

Many thanks,

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ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Re: Another vote for the top display

tommiejeep wrote:

A question, and I did do a quick run through of the PDF manual, can you still get the top display to light up using the on off switch? I use a lot for low light events.

It's always on, unless disabled from the menu. You can also set its backlight level.

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Tim O'Connor
Tim O'Connor Veteran Member • Posts: 5,427
Re: Another vote for the top display
4

JimKasson wrote:

ncsakany wrote:

I've been thinking, given the inability to completely turn off information display on the main display and EVF, what is the benefit afforded by the top display? I didn't find a way to customize it, and it's just repeating some of the information already displayed in the other two.

Am I missing something here?

Count me as a top display proponent. I missed (and railed at) its MILC demise on the a7x cameras, and welcomed its return on the GFX 50S. Especially with Nikon's "push the button and twist the dials" mode changing (and the aforesaid buttons being for the most part on the top of the camera), it's very useful to be able to look down at the top of the camera and perform the necessary adjustments.

In many candid situations, it is not conducive to good pictures to have to continually bring the camera to your eye, or even raise it from waist level, until you are ready to make the exposure. The top display facilitates this. I wish Nikon had taken a page from Fuji's book and made the display visible when the power is off, but that would have been just icing on the cake.

I much prefer just changing the rear LCD to display the current settings.  Just as convenient as a top display, but is able to display much more information.  Bit of a waste of space if you ask me.

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tommiejeep
tommiejeep Veteran Member • Posts: 6,799
Re: Another vote for the top display
1

Many thanks

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MayaTlab0
MayaTlab0 Senior Member • Posts: 2,784
Re: Top display purpose
1

That it's called "top display" is problematic as it hides its true benefits.

Think of it rather as a "low power consumption display not meant for images". Theoretically, such "top" displays can provide two benefits over the EVF or rear LCD :

- Depending on design, they can consume less power. I'm not exactly sure though that Nikon selected the best technology to do that, and that might be why it's turned off when the camera is off. But at the least, when both the EVF and rear LCDs are off to save power, the "top" display can remain on and allow you to change settings, while limiting power consumption.

- Because they aren't meant to display a picture, they can use technologies that have advantages in some critical areas, such as the capacity for a display to remain fully legible, even under bright sunlight, which are incompatible with image reproduction.

ncsakany
OP ncsakany Senior Member • Posts: 2,218
Re: Top display purpose
1

MayaTlab0 wrote:

- Depending on design, they can consume less power. I'm not exactly sure though that Nikon selected the best technology to do that, and that might be why it's turned off when the camera is off. But at the least, when both the EVF and rear LCDs are off to save power, the "top" display can remain on and allow you to change settings, while limiting power consumption.

- Because they aren't meant to display a picture, they can use technologies that have advantages in some critical areas, such as the capacity for a display to remain fully legible, even under bright sunlight, which are incompatible with image reproduction.

Then perhaps an e ink display would have been better suited, something like an e-reader, with extremely low power requirements, and could have persisted the information being displayed even with power off.

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MayaTlab0
MayaTlab0 Senior Member • Posts: 2,784
Re: Top display purpose

ncsakany wrote:

MayaTlab0 wrote:

- Depending on design, they can consume less power. I'm not exactly sure though that Nikon selected the best technology to do that, and that might be why it's turned off when the camera is off. But at the least, when both the EVF and rear LCDs are off to save power, the "top" display can remain on and allow you to change settings, while limiting power consumption.

- Because they aren't meant to display a picture, they can use technologies that have advantages in some critical areas, such as the capacity for a display to remain fully legible, even under bright sunlight, which are incompatible with image reproduction.

Then perhaps an e ink display would have been better suited, something like an e-reader, with extremely low power requirements, and could have persisted the information being displayed even with power off.

E ink displays of the e-reader kind are too slow, but a display just like the one on the EOS R would be IMO ideal (the selected mode remains visible, even when the camera if off).

What I'd love to see from camera manufacturers is a truly smart power management. By that I mean that the camera would be able to discretely power on or off parts of itself, maybe even gradually as needed, in discrete steps, and rapidly, so that one never truly has to turn a camera off during the day, just like a smartphone for example. The ON/OFF button would rather be a "lock" button.

When adjusting settings via dials or buttons, with the help of the low power consumption LCD, the sensor, EVF and rear LCD would be totally off, and the processor in power saving mode, but they would instantly turn on hen raising the camera to the eye, or pressing the shutter half-way, for example. Right now there's a significant delay that prevents camera manufacturers from doing power saving in an elegant and user friendly way.

Perhaps in the future rear LCDs will become so legible in bright light, and consume so little power, that the advantages of a "low power consumption display not meant for images" will disappear.

VladimirCZ Regular Member • Posts: 280
Re: Top display purpose

ncsakany wrote:

MayaTlab0 wrote:

- Depending on design, they can consume less power. I'm not exactly sure though that Nikon selected the best technology to do that, and that might be why it's turned off when the camera is off. But at the least, when both the EVF and rear LCDs are off to save power, the "top" display can remain on and allow you to change settings, while limiting power consumption.

- Because they aren't meant to display a picture, they can use technologies that have advantages in some critical areas, such as the capacity for a display to remain fully legible, even under bright sunlight, which are incompatible with image reproduction.

Then perhaps an e ink display would have been better suited, something like an e-reader, with extremely low power requirements, and could have persisted the information being displayed even with power off.

Exactly my thought! low power display with information available even if a camera is turned off would make sense, otherwise it's just waste of precious space (they could put some dials instead for a more direct control).

JimKasson
JimKasson Forum Pro • Posts: 25,454
Re: Top display purpose
1

MayaTlab0 wrote:

That it's called "top display" is problematic as it hides its true benefits.

Think of it rather as a "low power consumption display not meant for images". Theoretically, such "top" displays can provide two benefits over the EVF or rear LCD :

- Depending on design, they can consume less power. I'm not exactly sure though that Nikon selected the best technology to do that, and that might be why it's turned off when the camera is off. But at the least, when both the EVF and rear LCDs are off to save power, the "top" display can remain on and allow you to change settings, while limiting power consumption.

- Because they aren't meant to display a picture, they can use technologies that have advantages in some critical areas, such as the capacity for a display to remain fully legible, even under bright sunlight, which are incompatible with image reproduction.

And, in the case of the GFX, even when the camera is turned off. You hinted at that possibility above.

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