If you have just bought a Canon EOS R camera and are wondering how to start the journey, we can help! Whether you have a genuine Canon EOS R, EOS RP, EOS R6 or EOS R5, the camera setup procedure is basically the same.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through the first basic settings you’ll apply so you can get started recording quickly. We used the EOS RP for this guide, but you should be able to follow any Canon EOS R system camera you own.
Image file formats and quality
There are two main options when it comes to image quality: JPEG and RAW. JPEGs are ‘finished’ images that you can share and print directly from the camera. RAW files, as the name suggests, contain raw data recorded by the sensor and need to be processed to create an image – but that means you can change some parameters later, including white balance and image style.
The image (and histogram) you see when you view a RAW file on the camera is actually a JPEG preview, based on the camera settings at the time it was taken. The RAW file contains more information in the shadow and highlights, so you have more room to discover details that in JPEG may appear lost in those areas.
The number of images and movies you can place on the card will depend on the file format and image quality (you will see the card capacity change as you change the settings). You can also record both RAW and JPEG at the same time, but this will consume memory capacity. Increasing the ISO will also reduce the number of files you can save.
Setting the time
The shooting data built into each captured image includes the time and date, so it is important that you adjust these settings correctly if you want to search for images by the shooting date or time in the software.
When you start the camera for the first time, you are asked to enter the date, time and time zone. But you can update this information at any time on page 2 of the yellow setup menu.
If you set the time zone correctly, you can easily change the time zone when needed, and the time and date will be updated automatically to reflect the change. You can also activate daylight saving time to move the time by an hour.
Setting copyright to an image
You can add copyright information to the EXIF data of each image you take. When someone opens your file, they will be able to find out who owns the image.
To do this, select “Copyright Information” on page 6 of the Setup menu.
Consider how much information you want to add in the copyright, because these details will be attached to each image. If you do not want your private phone number to become public, follow the website or email address.
You can find this basic option on page 1 of the Setup menu. You will need to format the new cards in the camera, but it is also worth formatting the cards that were used in another camera or computer or when an error code is displayed on the screen (watch out for errors 02 and 03 on the screen).
Note that formatting the card will remove all files, including those you may have protected.
You can check the “Low Level Format” box to basically clean the memory card thoroughly, which is worth doing if your read and write speeds are slower than usual. You can read more about this in our guide on the benefits of formatting a memory card over deleting files.