Lumix AF Custom Settings

Let’s talk about custom user modes first

Do you make use of your camera’s custom user modes? One of my favourite features on my Lumix g9 isto use camera user custom modes. These modes are normally called C1, C2, C3 and can be found on your camera’s mode dial. Although some cameras may not have this functionality.

Why use them

Camera user custom modes allow you to preset your camera to use certain shooting parameters. Rather than fiddling with changing your camera settings, you can use the camera custom user modes C1, C2, C3 to set your camera up for different shooting scenarios. Using these modes saves you time and ensures that you have the correct settings dialled in for the type of photography you are doing.

How to use them

I have written a post on this before, you can read it here. However, I have upgraded from my Lumix GX8 to the Lumix G9, which has a sophisticated system for dialling in Autofocus sensitivity parameters for different shooting situations. So, I have set my cameras custom user modes to the following shooting conditions (scene types) to take full advantage of the Autofocus custom settings.

My custom user mode settings for my Lumix G9

Combing these AF setting with other settings and saving them to your cameras C1, C2, and C3 custom modes allows you to exploit your cameras versatility and means you do not have to fiddle with settings, or forget to change a setting.

Custom User Modes and Scene Types

There are four default sets of preset Autofocus settings, these should cover most of your shooting needs.

  • Set 1 – Highly versatile basic settings.
  • Set 2 – For subjects that go in one direction and move at a constant speed.
  • Set 3 – Continues to track the main subjects even when obstacles appear.
  • Set 4 – For subjects that change speed and move unpredictably.

However, Panasonic has gone beyond this and provided 7 scene types and recommended Autofocus settings. These include,

  • Basic situations (Set 1)
  • Shooting trains and airplanes (Set 2)
  • Group sports (Set 3)
  • Car and bike racing (Set 4)
  • Wildlife
  • Portraits (Set1)
  • Low light situations (Set 1)

Most of the scene types make use of the default presets but if you shoot Wildlife you will need to change when of the default presets, so for example, if you do not shoot trains and planes, you can modify this preset for wildlife shooting.

These Autofocus settings are combined with suggestions for setting your

  • Focus mode
  • AF mode
  • Burst mode

This ensures that you make best use of your cameras autofocus capabilities. You can see the combination of autofocus settings in the table above.

C1 – Every Day Shooting

I have used C1 to set my camera up for every day shooting. This user mode uses aperture priority and takes advantage of the face / eye detection, continuous auto focus and my drive is set up for low burst and uses the standard photo style. This provides good all round versatility and should cover most every day scenes. Typical subjects may be children, Ballet, Horseback riding and cycling.

Panasonic have created a guidebook to help you get the best from your camera’s autofocus system. You can download it here: Lumix AF Guide Book.

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