These are tough times for the single-minded. Existential decisions abound and choices have to be made on an hourly basis: paper or plastic? skim or 1%? grande or vente? And of course, the great decision facing anyone with an HD SLR camera: stills or video?
That last one is the great bugaboo I’ve been struggling with lately. And it’s not made any easier by the fact that, when doing one or the other, I have to set up the camera in two completely different ways.
What do I mean? Well, for stills, I like the AF to start off the back AEL/AFL button, and keep the shutter release free from focusing functions. I like to work in half stops, not third stops, daylight is my default WB, and Aperture Priority my default exposure mode. I use the Function button to lock exposure, I use Continuous AF and I never use auto ISO
In video mode, I like the shutter button to start the focus, the AE/AFL button to set to lock exposure (AEL Hold), I work in 1/3 stops so I can get the desired 1/50th of a second shutter speed for 24fps video, Shutter Priority is my go to setting, as are Single AF and Auto WB. And for video, I use Auto ISO (set to go from ISO 100-1600 when the shutter speed drops below 1/30th).
Well let me tell you, that’s a heap of custom functions to reprogram everytime you jump back and forth from stills to video. And in the light of this pressure, I have to admit that I’ve become a user.
But before you call the intervention folks, when I say user, I mean the menu item that allows the D7000 to assume one of completely two different personalities depending upon the user…that’s User 1 or User 2.
Yes, you can program in two completely different sets of custom functions, save one as USER 1 and the other as USER 2 and switch back and forth with a click of the top dial!
Pure genius (can you tell I’m smitten with this camera????). And if you should decide to, say, switch one function while in a User menu, all the other functions seem to hold on until you reselect the User setting.
Now, you know I’m no techno-phile. And for all I know this ability to chose user menus has been present in previous camera models. But it hasn’t been until I had to choose between two such utterly disparate crafts as stills and videos have I ever felt the need to be so, um, schizoid in my settings. Having a split personality has never felt so good…or been so useful!