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Monday, 14 February 2022


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How about a revised "how I set up ..." post when you've settled a bit?

[We can do that, yes. --Mike]

I can understand that. Bums me though as it's one of the rare times I something be a featured comment! More seriously, I look forward to seeing where your thinking goes with it that camera.

After 22 years trying to find a very best combination in digital photography, with plenty of bad selections, I have suddenly found, that the only system I have kept with a nice selection of lens is the Micro 4/3rd LUMIXs and OLYs. They give me what I need and are easy to carry and cheap to buy more lenses. I think this will be the final step. I am still dizzy from 30+ years of working in darkrooms and film selections before 2000 and just need to make as many good pictures as I can for the next 20 or 30 years.

Oh that's really interesting! Please post more about this. I'm always interested about the inherent discoverability of features (i.e. the obviousness factor of them), and if you needed to be told about them -> that sounds like an opportunity to be designed differently or at least be surfaced differently.

It reminds me of my experience of using an EOS-1 (the original) for the first time - all the key features were just obvious to the user. I don't think I've ever used a more intuitive modern camera since.

Regards, Pak

This is actually priceless. After so many posts about the disgust shared by Mike and others about the infuriating complexity of cameras today and their obtuse user interfaces, and how 500+ page BOOK are written about the menus systems and how to set up the cameras, Mike apparently decides to live with it, jumps in, does a deep dive I suspect into one of those 500+ page books (or the 500+ page instruction manual written by someone for whom English is an 11th language), and writes a post about how he has finally decided to set up his camera. However, after all that work, he uses the camera for a few days and decides he has to pull the post because he changed his mind about the "best" settings.
There are alternatives out there to this perverse complexity. Just a few. The Hasselblad X1D, the Leica cameras, and the Phase One cameras. (Hmmm, what do they have in common?). So, it CAN be done. Unfortunately, you have to pay a huge price premium to get a simple and uncomplicated camera.

I respond to colour rendition and “smoothness” in lenses. I have experienced gratification of this type in two lenses—a Canon FD 35–70 f/4 adapted to my Sony a7, and a tiny Sigma 30mm f/2.8 for my m43 cameras.

I thought that I should rationalise some m43 lenses, so I sold my 20/1.7 Lumix and the afore-mentioned 30mm Sigma, replaced by a cheap-ish Lumix 25/1.7. Big mistake.

Huh. Good thing this site isn't titled "The Online Armorer".

Hi Mike,

You bemoaned the lack of 2 top dials on your a6600 for use in M mode shooting, one to adjust aperture and the other to adjust shutter speed.

But there is a way to set up your camera so that the one top dial can adjust BOTH aperture and shutter speed when in M mode.

All you need to do is set up C1 or C2 so that it swaps the function of the top dial from Aperture to Shutter Speed but only while you hold it down. When set up, you can use the top dial to adjust aperture, then press C1 and adjust shutter speed while you hold C1 down, and when you let go of C1 the top dial reverts instantly to aperture. Cool, quick and intuitive!


From the online manual: “After selecting MENU → (Camera Settings2) → [(stills photo image) Custom Key], select a button to assign, and then select the function to assign.”

The button you select to assign is C1 (or C2 if you prefer). It needs to be one of these two because you want to keep your thumb free to rotate the top dial, so the button has to be accessible to the forefinger: C1 or C2 are the only ones.

The function you select to assign is “My Dial 1 during Hold”. Then set up My Dial 1 so that the control dial (top dial) is set to Tv.

Then, every time you press and hold C1, the top dial function will change to Tv until you let go of C1. Bingo!

If you would prefer to not hold C1 down, but simply press it to toggle the top dial to Tv and then press it again to toggle it back to Av, then don’t select “My Dial 1 during hold” in the above instruction, but select “Toggle My Dial 1” instead. However, to my mind, this way is a bit less efficient (2 button presses of C1) and you could lose track of whether the top dial is set to Av or Tv.


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