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kipperad 6 28
9 Jan 2012 7:48AM
great minds?
design a good camera, & then make a bewildering array of items in the menu system, to make the camera only fully usable to a minority
the majority will use it on the automatic E.X.R .
what is your view on this,,,,, hope to learn more about the operation of the camera, over time.
or be content as a point & shoot..... john

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Rev2 8 302 2 England
9 Jan 2012 7:59AM
If all else fails read the instructions.
User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
9 Jan 2012 8:57AM
I think that those of us who cut our teeth on decades of film photography probably can quite quickly get to grips with a new digital camera's basic functions - but then ignore all of the other features unless we have a specific need for one or are simply curious about them.

New users, on the other hand, can become bewildered. For example, my wife (who had never previously done anything other than "point and shoot" ) got a new Nikon P7100. She loves the camera but, in her customer feedback to Nikon, was heavily critical of the so-called "User Manual", saying that it was pathetic and had obviously been written by nerds for nerds. She made the point that she was not a nerd; just an ordinary person who wanted to learn how to operate her camera efficiently and effectively and, for that purpose, the manual was pathetic. In her own words - "pure *****".

I have just ordered "David Busch's Nikon Coolpix P7100 Guide to Digital Photography" for her on Amazon as, generally, those third-party guides are far better than the trash the manufacturers produce.

mohikan22 14 2.3k 2 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2012 8:59AM
well most manuals are not all that good, your best bet (as i did learn) is just ask in the forums Grin has helped me no end over the last few yrs.
kipperad 6 28
9 Jan 2012 9:19AM
Hi Mohikan,
i agree, one can learn a lot from the forums, and many reviews, are very helpful
so, as i said, the camera may get more interesting over time, as one accrues, more tips & info,, over time,
i must say , i like the fuji x10, & am pleased so far with the pics,,perhaps the manual will become more useful & understandable,, with time.
but many very good reviews, state , that the menus are too involved ,pity really,,, but,,,,, press on. John
mohikan22 14 2.3k 2 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2012 9:21AM
as i did with my 7d (manual too big!!) i just sat down during tv on an evening and went through each on on a small test subject. a figurine or similar. just to see the result and worked on those.
Steppenwolf 6 1.2k
9 Jan 2012 9:32AM
I think the problem is the user manuals - as has been said. Most digital cameras have reasonably logically laid out functions, which have been designed by sensible people, and then they get a monkey to write the user guide. The solution is to buy a good guide written by someone else - you'll find stuff in there that you won't find in the manufacturer's manual. Absolutely the worst guide I've ever used is the one that came with a Samsung PVR I recently bought. The instructions on how to configure it to connect to the internet via Wi-Fi were not just incomplete, illogical and misleading - they were also factually wrong in several places. The only way to get it working was to chuck the manual away and rely on trial and error.
Stillbase 6 75 Wales
9 Jan 2012 9:33AM
After nearly 4 years, I am still trying to understand what some of the functions are on my D300. I think its a case of initially setting the camera so that it will take pictures (probably automatically) from day 1 then slowly altering settings over the next few days/weeks/months etc and see not only what effect they have, but to then decide are they of any use to you.
kipperad 6 28
9 Jan 2012 9:54AM
Hi Steppenwolf,
true, i will be looking for a written guide to the Fuji x10, possibly one may come along in the future

it,s one thing to be an expert on the camera,,, quite another , to show others , how to use it, in an easy or simpler way
DOGSBODY 9 1.4k 30 England
9 Jan 2012 11:00AM
I agree that too many modern cameras try to be all things to all people and as a result they end up being overcomplicated and slow to use.

Does an experienced photographer really want all of the whistles and bells that manufacturers insist on foisting on us. In most cases editing software can do most of the things that we need without having to wade through pages of menus at the picture taking stage.

As for putting instruction manuals onto disc what use are they when you are miles from home and need to consult the manual for some reason.

I would rather have a camera that does the basics simply and well and that is easy to use and understand. After all, that is how us older generation learnt how a camera works and the relationship between film speed, shutter and apertures.
9 Jan 2012 11:27AM
I think the user manuals are originally written in Japanese, then suffer in translation. Smile I bought my Fujifinepix S3 Pro about six years ago and I use it mostly in Aperture Priority, quite often in Manual and sometimes in Shutter Priority. Parts of the manual made no sense until I'd been using the camera for six months or more. There are also menu items which I've never used - Film Modes and Dynamic Range settings to name but two. And Custom White Balance too.
mikehit 8 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2012 1:06PM
I think there is a difference between the user manuak showing how you navigate around the system (as provided by the manufacturer) and a book that shows you what settings you want for a given setting. It reminds me of why I got bored to hell with music lessons at school - the insistence of learning scale after scale but what I wanted to do was learn how to play a tune.
saltireblue Plus
8 8.0k 33 Norway
9 Jan 2012 1:51PM
I almost gave up on digital photography weeks after having bought my first digital camera - a Panasonic - because the user manual and the physical in-camera menu were totally user unfriendly. It was so blooming frustrating.
Luckily I binned it in favour of a Canon and am well pleased I did. User - friendly controls and menu and a manual I found easy top understand.

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