About OMD E-M1X Settings

Of course, the camera settings used by photographers are always of interest, and I’ve also learned from the tips of other photographers. I change the basic settings from time to time according to my current interests. It is important that you know the camera settings well enough and can adjust them easily if necessary.

Olympus OMD is a highly adjustable body. In this story, I think I’ll tell you the key things about the settings I use on the E-M1X body. The same settings apply very much to the E-M1 Mark II/III bodies.


My shooting style is fundamentally influenced by the fact that I am unfortunately totally left-eye-sighted and wear spectacles. My left eye is so dominant that aiming with the right eye becomes nothing. The camera bodies, on the other hand, are designed for right-handed and right-eye-sighted people.

For this reason, for example, when shooting, moving the focus point with your thumb on the rear screen or using the back button Focus is virtually impossible, my nose or spectacles are always in the way. Fortunately, the OMD viewfinder is good for the spectacle wearer, leaving no shadows.

I basically shoot with manual settings, but Auto ISO is on. I control the shutter speed and aperture, the camera takes care of the auto exposure.

Tip: In M shooting mode, when Auto ISO is selected, the exposure compensation is done by pressing the exposure compensation button down and using the joystick or arrow keys to move the exposure in the desired direction.

In the C1-C4 shooting modes, I have stored basic things. Usually, some kind of bird pictures are in sight, so the settings go something like this:

C1: M-mode, electronic shutter, sequential L, shutter speed 1/2000, aperture 2.8, C-AF + Bird Tracking, 5 x 5 focusing points in the middle. Fn-lever to position 2 and I have C-AF and 5 focusing points in the middle.

C2: Othervise as C1, but C-AF Sensitivity is +2.

C3: Othervise as C1, but ProCapL.

C4: Othervise as C1, but ProCapH and S-AF.

Next, deeper into Menu settings.


Usually in nature photography, the focus mode is C-AF, with or without Bird Tracking. AF + MF is on, so manual focusig is always possible.

AEL/AFL is on mode2 and Half Way AF is Operative. Pressing the shutter button halfway starts focusing, and pressing it down locks the exposure. I have never really learned to use back button focus for the reasons mentioned above.

AF Scanner is on mode2. If the conditions are poor for focusing, the AF will scan only once.

C-AF Sensitivity is usually -2. Sometimes there will be situations where I adjust it to 0, or even +2.

C-AF Center Start and C-AF Center Priority are always on, regardless of the focus area selected. Then the focus always starts from the center of the focus area and emphasizes the center of the focus area when focusing.

Bird Tracking searches for the subject in the entire image area, but this way the search for the subject begins and focuses on the desired focus area. With Joystck, you can quickly move the focus area to the right place.


Set Home is set to five focus points in the center. This affects all shooting modes, for example, C1-C4 shooting modes cannot be set separately.

In Target Mode Settings, I have defined four different focus area settings, all of which I use when needed. The Orientation Linked setting allows you to define focus areas differently in horizontal and vertical shooting. All of these are affected by the C-AF Center Start and C-AF Center Priority mentioned above.


I have defined three AF Limiter settings and change them when needed. I call the desired AF Limiter area with the L-Fn button on the lens and the Front Dial.


MF Assist is normally Off. Sometimes when fiddling with a macro lens I put it on and then it’s very handy.

The Reset Lens is in the off position. Then, for example, the focusing distance does not change even if the camera is sometimes in sleeping mode.

B1. Button/Dial/Lever

The Button Function is otherwise in the default settings, but the already mentioned L-Fn calls the AF Limiter.

The Center Button is in the Home position, which returns the focus points to the default position. I have a default setting of five focus points in the middle.

With the Direction Key, I select the desired focus area.

I have set the Dial Function so that the Front Dial selects the shutter speed and the Rear Dial the aperture. Somehow more convenient for me like this.

The Fn Lever Function is set to mode2. When the Fn lever is set to 1, 5 x 5 focus points and C-AF + Bird Tracking are selected. When the Fn lever is in position 2, then C-AF and 5 focus points. This way, bird tracking can be quickly turned on or off by clicking with your thumb if necessary.

C1. Release/ /Image Stabilizer

S-AF and C-AF Release priority are off. If the camera has not focused, then the shutter will not operate.

L shooting speeds are the fastest, no limiters. ProCapL Pre-shutter Frames is 10.

H-shooting speeds are also the fastest, no limiters. ProCapH Pre-shutter Frames is 30.

C1. Release/ /Image Stabilizer

IS is set to S-IS AUTO, Fps priority is on. Half way rls on, Lens I.S. priority off.

D1. Disp./ /PC

The “Screen Flag”/Info Settings setting (second line of the menu) is worth checking out, as it has a hidden LV info behind it, which allows you to select the information to be displayed when shooting on the Live View screen. I have set this to Image Only and Custom1. Custom1 has a histogram and Level Gauge selected.

This way, when shooting, with one press of the Info key, I get the histogram and Level Gauge to be displayed. And with one press also off.

D2. Disp./ /PC

Live View Boost is sometimes handy when shooting in low light. By default, it is off.

Note: If Live View Boost is on, the histogram will not work when shooting.


EV and ISO Step are both 1 / 3EV.

ISO-Auto Set Upper Limit is 6400, Default is 200. I use ISO Auto almost always.

Noise Filter off and Low ISO Processing Drive Priority.

H1. Record/Erase

Card Slot Settings is set to Auto Switch. That is, first shoot the selected card full and then automatically switch to another. Both card slots are UHS II compliant.


EVF Auto Switch is usually off. This is because I want to control whether I am aiming at the viewfinder or the back screen. The change is conveniently done from the button on the left side of the viewfinder.

J1. Utility

Battery Settings: First shoot Battery 1 and then switch to Battery 2.

Backlit LCD: 1 min.

Sleep: 1 min.

Auto Power Off: 4h

Quick Sleep Mode: On.

J3. Utility

Record GPS Location off, Field Sensor Logger Stopped. All the extra out of taking energy.

My Menu

Here I have collected all sorts of frequently needed ones, so there is no need to look for them in the Menu.

Currently here are: Live ND Shooting, HDR, Reset/Custom Modes, Battery Settings (so I can easily see the status of both batteries), MF Assist, EVF Auto Switch, High Res Shot, Tracking Subject, Live View Boost, L Settings, H Settings, AF Limiter and C-AF Sensitivity.

There is also a rear screen brightness adjustment. For example, when shooting the night sky or northern lights, you should adjust the rear display to the dimmest setting. This is because when browsing images in the dark, they otherwise look much brighter than in reality.

Here are these. Below you can feel free to comment or tell me about your settings.

2 thoughts on “About OMD E-M1X Settings

  1. Hi and thanks for this. I have the wonderful 1/3 and am consiering adding the 1X. Im wondering does the bird follow focus function work well?

    1. Hi and thanks!

      Short version: Yes, it does. 🙂

      Longer version: I have had two Mark II’s and now I have Mark III and 1X. C-AF of Mark III was slightly better than C-AF of 1X before bird tracking update. Or it might have been just a feeling because Mark III is so compact. But bird tracking of 1X is a big step to next level. It identifies the shape of bird, and if bird’s head is visible, it focuses to head and eye. I highly recommend.

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