EOS R custom controls provide extensive freedom to setup the camera to how you like to work. Over the last 18 months I’ve developed extensively customised settings to help me use the camera more rapidly by reprioritising access to features I use regularly.

In this first instalment I am only going to explain one button, the M-Fn button. However rest assured that there’s other posts to follow that will explain every little customisation I’ve put in to my EOS R. Some will not appeal to everyone, but I hope it gives an insight as to how to refine your camera to suit your photography needs.

Back in February I wrote about how the EOS R had taken over my photography – almost, and said that I had not got on well with the camera initially. These days I think the EOS R with firmware 1.6.0 is the the camera it should have been in September 2018. Good news is that if you have an EOS R, and for that matter an EOS RP, you can install the latest firmware and get a better camera for no extra outlay.

EOS R M-Fn button custom settings

M-Fn button is too complex to be used instinctively

I’m a long time EOS camera user, and invariably use my cameras by composing and taking my shot while looking through the viewfinder. The EVF is not a bad thing, but the limitations of the smaller mirrorless body means there’s a lack of dedicated buttons like you would find on an EOS 90D or EOS 5D Mark IV. Canon grouped the functions of four different buttons on to the M-Fn button making it much harder to use. On an SLR, I can reach for the ISO button with my index finger, press the button and turn the main dial to change ISO. On the EOS R, I had to press the M-Fn button, look at the screen/evf, potentially change the quick control dial to select ISO from the five possible settings, then turn the main dial to change the ISO.

So lets simplify with EOS R custom controls

My simplification is straightforward using EOS R custom controls, M-Fn button is now an ISO button. Normally M-Fn button can change ISO, drive mode, AF mode, white balance and flash compensation. I don’t change the drive mode part way through a shoot, I set it up for what I’m doing at the start of the shoot. AF mode, I would normally use Servo AF all the time with back button AF – if the AF-ON button was in the right place, which it isn’t. Still I can live with slower access to this. White balance is rarely changed for me, I shoot RAW and invariably use auto white balance except when I’m using custom or kelvin for some specific situations. Lastly, flash exposure compensation, I set this on my flash or transmitter using the dial on them, not the camera.

So now with the configuration steps outlined below I have an ISO button on my EOS R, I move my index finder off the shutter button, find the M-Fn and press it, then turn the main dial three clicks to raise or lower my ISO by 1-stop and I don’t need to look to do it.

As you can see there’s no need for me to have at least three if not four of the five functions on the M-Fn button, so that is what I did…

Step 1 – go to the customise buttons menu

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

UPDATE for EOS RP users – everything below is the same for your camera, you can fully simplify the M-Fn button too. Go to the C.Fn menu, select C.FnIII:Operation/others then select the M.Fn button and follow along.

Step 2 – choose the M-Fn button

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

Step 3 – reconfigure the dial function

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

The default setting is partly right, we want to keep the M-Fn button doing the DIAL FUNC, but it needs refinement. Press the INFO button or tap on the screen INFO to configure the detail settings.

Step 4 – limit the DIAL FUNC settings

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

You’ll see that there’s actually a number of settings that can be assigned to the M-Fn button when it is given the DIAL FUNC. The key with this screen is to remove the check marks from each setting you don’t need. Do this by tapping on each icon to remove the check mark, so your screen looks like this…

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

Step 5 – press INFO

EOSR M-Fn button customisation

You have to press the INFO button and make a choice as the to the order of the settings of the DIAL FUNC, even if you only have one possibility. At this screen press INFO again to confirm your choice and you are returned to the EOS R custom controls main screen.

Autofocus is next…

Part 1: Simplifying the M-Fn button (this one)

Part 2: Fast access to EOS R autofocus settings

Part 3: Miscellaneous customised buttons