New to GX1 - need help!

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by HeartSleeve, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. HeartSleeve

    HeartSleeve New to Mu-43

    Mar 8, 2013
    Delaware seashore
    Hi - just joined this site in hopes to get up to speed with new GX1. I am new to 4/3rds, coming from Nikon D3/D300 family. Looking for sample menu setups or how best to "learn" basics of this new camera. I usually shoot raw/manual setting but the Lumix user guide for the GX1 is like gibberish to me. I shoot mostly outdoor/nature or architecture, travel photography, and have a travel photog cruise coming up in 6 weeks. Can I learn the basics of operating this new camera in that amount of time? Sorry to ramble but I'm frustrated and confused. Any help gladly accepted.
  2. GFFPhoto

    GFFPhoto Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2013
    There is an expanded users manual that is available online.

    Panasonic GX1 User Manual

    It's a pretty simple camera. Just play with it for a couple hours and check the large manual for the things that you don't figure out right away. Since you already know photography and don't use a lot of the onboard creative JPEG modes, once you learn how to assign the Fn buttons and quick menu you are %95 of the way there.
  3. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    What are you confused/frustrated with? It's a pretty easy to use camera. All the manual functions are there, click the wheel to alternate between aperture and shutter speed. ISO, White Balance all have dedicated buttons.
  4. HeartSleeve

    HeartSleeve New to Mu-43

    Mar 8, 2013
    Delaware seashore
    I was trying to use preset menus, like on my Nikon, so that #1 = Nature/Travel/landscape
    #2 = Sports/Action
    #3 = Portrait
    #4 = P& S
    My head swam when I tried understand what the Lumix manual has on that topic. And it would have been helpful to cross reference the verbiage with the spot on the viewfinder where one would find a particular setting.

    And to explain my confusion, I'm a visual learner, not a reading learner, so reading the manuals that came with it just make my head hurt. So pictures of menus are easier for me than lists. i.e., I loved the manuals David Busch does for cameras because they have nice easy to understand pictures of what he is talking about. He isnt doing one for GX1.
  5. Chas

    Chas Mu-43 Rookie

    Feb 15, 2011
    The Panasonic websites are quite good, have you gone through those? I think the site explains things pretty well. Once you do that, the manual, the advanced manual on the CD (not the paper book provided) or available free as a download are quite complete.

    And yes you should be able to learn the basics in 6 weeks.

    DMC-GX1 | PRODUCTS | LUMIX | Digital Camera | Panasonic Global

    Panasonic have quite a complete set of JPEG modes various scene modes, and very complete manual adjustments, even to the point of dialing in more or less magenta, yellow, cyan to the basic color.

    But all that aside, the blue ia button is your panic button. let's say you have gone off the deep end with a custom set up changing colors, sharpness, contrast, dialing in a bit of EV, got ths focus box set to point focus and moved over to lower left of the screen, etc, and your significant other wants a stranger to take a picture of you both in front of the waterfall.... Hit the ia button, and it lights up blue.... the camera is set to intelligent automatic, and becomes a point and shoot, but using all the intelligent settings of the camera to produce the best JPEG it is able to do.

    The PASM modes work well, and are straight forward, and I doubt much different than PASM in any other digital camera.
  6. HeartSleeve

    HeartSleeve New to Mu-43

    Mar 8, 2013
    Delaware seashore
    OMG thank you! This was the exact type of "show me" I was looking for - never got a msg or alert you had posted until today, but this should do the trick. Found the IA+ and have been playing with that until I get my sea legs. But thanks again!
  7. spdavies

    spdavies Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Apr 9, 2013
    GX1 Stuff

    One little snag that had me puzzled - intermittently when I pressed a Fn button to get Magnify, it wouldn't work - couldn't figure out why - then discovered that, if you are accidentally pressing even a little on the back control buttons (very easy to do when bending your hand to reach top Fn buttons), it will disable all the other buttons. A little thing, but frustrated me for a while until I figured it out.
  8. Simone

    Simone Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    I agree about the manual: it's terrible!
  9. gochugogi

    gochugogi Mu-43 Veteran

    The GX1 manual is one of the worse I've seen from a major company. Luckily an experienced shooter should be able to figure out most functions and settings by playing with it. Albeit I found the GUI less organized than my Canon and Nikon cameras and even a little trickier than my E-P3. The only thing I could never figure out how to disable the LCD for shooting more stealth with an OVF or shooting blind. The EVF has a button to disable the LCD but there doesn't seem to be one on the body or in the menus.
  10. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Pressing the "display" button will cycle through various display styles. One of them is off.
  11. zapatista

    zapatista Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 19, 2012
    Denver, Colorado, USA
    The manual is awful, but the interface of the camera (handling) is among the best. I'm still trying to figure out the stupid raw icons :p
  12. gochugogi

    gochugogi Mu-43 Veteran

    Hmm, sounds too good to be true! My GX1 has 4 screen display choices when you press the display button: blank (image only), level, level with info, info and info with date/time. The only way I can disable the LCD while shooting is to mount the EVF and press the toggle button. Hoping there's a hidden menu or you hold down three buttons at once...
  13. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Hmmm... I don't actually own the GX1, but I have 3 different Panasonic bodies and I can turn off the screen via the display button. Perhaps they removed this feature in the GX1? Sorry.
  14. RoadTraveler

    RoadTraveler Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 23, 2012
    I think that's correct, at least that has also been my experience. However, I've never tired nor wanted to turn off the LCD when the LVF2 is not mounted. I have a few GX1 bodies with a LVF2 mounted, and use the button to select the LCD or viewfinder.
  15. gochugogi

    gochugogi Mu-43 Veteran

    I assume Panasonic thinks like you do! I owned an E-P3 first and got used to turning off the LCD for stealth in dark venues or when I'm using an optical bright line finder. Saves battery life and doesn't draw attention. A glowing LCD is almost like a flashlight in a dark club or theater. I'm actually pretty good at shooting with LCD off and sighting along the top of the camera. I'm also skilled at using a strap and using my body to aim the camera. I used those techniques with film back in the day so it's hard to break old habits.
  16. RoadTraveler

    RoadTraveler Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 23, 2012
    Yep, agreed on all points. The LCD is bright and distracting in dark places and surely eats battery power. Surely the LVF2 uses some power, but I assume much less than the LCD.

    Me too. I'm no stranger to what I call 'point shooting', aiming and shooting the camera without benefit of a viewfinder or LCD, often from a high or low angle. The results vary, but I've made some pretty good shots this way over the years, better with 35mm or wider focal lengths (on 35mm).
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