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OM-D Tips & Tricks: Using MySets Settings


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If you’ve ever used an Olympus OM-D camera you will already be quite familiar with all the settings and customisations that are possible with it. The E-M1 is a very versatile camera that can be used in a multitude of different situations that require different settings on your camera. For instance if I am shooting product in my studio I want to be able to view the Live View on the LCD and then have it switch off automatically when I put my eye to the EVF (engages the Auto EVF sensor). I also want to be able to immediately zoom in to the reviewed image on the LCD by using the rear command dial as soon as I have taken the shot, so I have the review time set to Auto. However, I don’t want this to be the case when I am shooting action, like for example when I’m shooting surfers. In that situation I’d rather not use the LCD on the back of the camera at all and I also don’t want the camera to display the shot I just took, especially if I am shooting at the max frame rate of ten images per second. I’d rather that the EVF doesn’t try to replay the image I just took at all. I also don’t want to use Auto-ISO when I am in the studio, whereas I would use it when shooting action.

While it’s great to have a camera that covers all the shooting options I need, the problem is I don’t want to have to go into the menu system and change all these little settings every time I do something different with the camera, because as you’d already know, the Olympus menu system is kind of convoluted and the English they use isn’t always the same as the English used by other camera makers to describe conventional camera settings.

Enter the MySet settings. These allow you to save different settings into different memory banks within the camera. There are 4 MySet banks on both my OM-D cameras and you should find these on the PEN series too. Here’s how you use them.

The first thing to be aware of is that you can’t rename these MySets in the camera, which is a great shame because it’s definitely something that would make using the OM-D’s a lot easier. You will have to remember what each MySet is set up for. It’s probably a good idea to save the options into a note on your iPhone or equivalent smartphone if you don’t change between MySets often. If you have a label maker that is capable of making really small labels you could probably stick one on the edge of your LCD lined up with the menu options to remind you which bank does what. There is actually a wider piece of unused LCD real estate on the right hand side that you could use for this should you be so inclined. I think I’ll just have to rely on my own memory to remember what each memory bank remembers! Let’s hope that somebody at Olympus will read this and give us the ability to name the MySets in a future firmware upgrade. :)

How To Set A MySet

Let’s assume that you have made some basic changes to the setup of your camera that you will use for general photography. You already have your Function buttons set, your scroll wheels go in the right direction you want them to and you know what settings they’re all changing, you have a specific AF mode and you also have face detection on. If you want to return your camera to this state at any time, you need to save the settings into the MySet banks. To do this is really simple:

  1. Press Menu
  2. Highlight the second item in Shooting Menu 1, which is Reset/MySet and press the OK button
  3. Move the highlight to the MySet number you want to use (1, 2, 3 or 4)
  4. Use the Right Arrow (important) to enter the selected item and then use the Up/Down arrows to save (Set) or clear (Reset) the bank of its settings.

That’s it. Now every time you want to use those settings all you need to do is enter the same menu but here’s the tricky little bit. When you want to activate a MySet, don’t use the Right Arrow when the item is highlighted in that menu. You need to use the OK button. This produces a different screen to using the Right Arrow and on it you get an option of Yes or No to load that MySet memory bank. Using the Right Arrow will take you to the screen for storing or clearing the current camera settings, which isn’t what you want to do if you’re just there to make a choice from existing MySets.

Something that can get a little confusing with the MySets is when you make a slight change to the settings and you don’t re-save it to the MySet. OK, so let’s say I am in my Studio MySet and I have the Auto-EVF sensor thing switched on (this turns off the LCD when it detects your face near the EVF). I can go into the settings and turn it off, but unless I now re-save the current state of the camera into the MySet I started with, it will not be set that way if I switch to another MySet and then revert back to the Studio MySet. Whatever changes you make that you’d like to be permanent have to be re-saved as per the steps I mentioned above. Which is the way it should be I suppose.


When you set a MySet it will remember all the settings that are currently set on the camera, including the shooting mode it was in when the save occurred. So if you are in Manual Mode when you store the settings, your OM-D will be in Manual mode when you activate that MySet, even if your PASM dial tells you otherwise. This can get very confusing, so if you’re an A mode shooter make sure you save A mode for each MySet, otherwise you could end up freaking yourself out when you find your PASM dial says A mode but the camera is in manual mode. Always look at what the Mode is in the EVF as this will be what the camera is shooting in. The EVF also shows you what MySet you’re using, if any.

Strategising MySets

A good strategy to employ if you’re going to use these MySets is to prioritise them in order of importance. I have a General mode, which is where I am using the camera for general purpose daylight photography (MySet1). That’s the mode I will use most so it gets the #1 slot. I have a Studio mode for when I shoot product where it uses a low ISO value, Manual mode, plus the EVF behaviour is different (saved as MySet2). I have a Low Light mode for theatre and stage photography where I don’t want the AF-illuminator or rear LCD to display at all and where I have higher auto-ISO values set (MySet3) and of course my Action mode where I have completely different settings for EVF/LCD and AF behaviour.

It is also possible to save any of these MySets to a Function button too, which will give you instant ability to switch between them without going into the menus. I have my two HLD-7 grip B-Fn buttons set to my two most used modes, namely General and Studio. If I want to use the camera for either of the other modes I go into the menu and activate them there. It’s really that simple. :)

If you have any other ideas for the use of MySets please mention them here.

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Something else I should add that I have just discovered is that you can assign a Myset to any of the modes on the mode dial, should you so wish. So for example, if you don't think you will ever use the ART mode you could assign a Myset to it, as well as any other option on that dial. 


To do this go to Custom Menu B and look at the 4th option which is Mode Dial Function. 


Just remember that you will have to assign this functionality to each Myset bank if you want them to be available in each. Could get confusing if you have them set differently per Myset! 


Correction: if you set this in the menu it applies it across all Mysets so you don't have to do what I mentioned above (now struck through).

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Much  thanks for the details on MySet.   On our Canon DSLRs we use the Custom 1, 2 and 3 settings to store the camera settings.   We use Customer 1 for landscape:  mirror lockup, 2 second timer, ISO 100...etc.    Custom 2 is for wildlife:  ISO 800, F8, AI Servo, high speed frame rate....etc..    Custom 3 was for fast moving wildlife ( or BIF) with ISO at 1600.    Those 3 settings gave us the ability to quickly move between landscape and wildlife shoots as needed.


Having the MySets feature was one of the selling points for us on EM-1.   We can define basic starting points for landscape, wildlife, fast animals, and maybe one for macro.    I think I have some manual reading to do.

Olympus OM-D EM-1 II, 60mm Macro, 7-14mm Pro, 12-40mm Pro, 40-150mm Pro, 300mm Pro


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These MySets are very handy indeed. I have them set up as General, Portrait (incl. Spot metering), Monochrome and Manual Focus (legacy lenses). My wish for a next Olympus camera is the ability to quickly switch MySets with the Super Control Panel or as extra option on the Mode Switch. Also, an extra function button on the front of the camera (a la Fuji) would be very nice to have.

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