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View Full Version : OM-10, inaccessible menu items


Tom Shino
21st March 2015, 08:46 PM
Hello, my first post.

Camera bought 2 weeks ago.
Went to shooting menu 2. Only top 2 options in white (available), all the rest in blue (unavailable) and in state "off".

Grateful for any help.

Miketoll
21st March 2015, 08:53 PM
Normally what happens is that you make a choice in the menu somewhere for something but that turns other choices off. Can be fun (!) chasing down what effects what.

PeterBirder
21st March 2015, 10:04 PM
Welcome to the group.

You probably have the camera in Inteligent Auto (iAuto) mode,ie. the camera operates as a simple "point and shoot" camera which is fine to start with.
In this mode the camera makes all the decisions about shooting so you don't need and can't access these items. If you want to take control of how the camera functions to get the best results with different scenes and situations you need to select Programme, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority or Manual on the dial on the top of the camera (manual page 17 refers).. The mode most of us will use most often is probably Aperture priority.

If you have any further questions as you explore this highly configurable camera just ask. There will always be someone on here who can help.

Regards.*chr

Tom Shino
22nd March 2015, 01:26 AM
YES Peter, thanks very much. Problem solved. WOW!

Tom

Tom Shino
22nd March 2015, 01:49 PM
Hi Peter,

My recent failure to find the way to reveal some items in the Olympus OMD E-M10 menu system brings to mind a wider issue – the structure of user guides etc. The Olympus manual contains a mass of detail, unfortunately set out in a labyrinthine form, but Olympus is merely one among many organizations that issue unsatisfactory manuals.

As I see it, the issue is that they focus primarily upon features of the device, rather than leading the reader towards the resolution of her/his problem.

In short they are feature-based as opposed to task-based.

Perhaps the most memorable manual I have ever encountered was that accompanying my old Hewlett-Packard programmable calculator, the HP-41C. It took you gently by the hand and led you patiently through each step needed to complete a particular task – demonstrating, IMHO, that the producer gave serious thought to the user.

To create a truly helpful manual an organization needs to employ skilled, experienced writers – and allow them the time necessary to undertake the work. That absorbs money and in the business climate of today is likely to receive a low priority.

Being new to the forum, I don’t know whether a rather long submission like this is appropriate. No doubt somebody will tell me if that’s the case.

Regards,

Tom

IainMacD
22nd March 2015, 02:12 PM
Hi Tom and welcome to the forum.
I downloaded a Kindle book called "Supercharging the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Camera" which is not the total solution but I found it quite useful.

Bikie John
22nd March 2015, 04:07 PM
Welcome to the forum, Tom.

No need to apologise for your comments on the manuals. I think you have summed it up very well - and the Oly manuals are a frequent topic of discussion. In general they seem to have basic information about all the options, not enough information about how they interact, and very little about how best to use them. And those third-party books I have seen just seem to repeat the same stuff, but at greater length and with more words.

One bugbear of mine is autofocus. There are lots of options that work together in the various modes, and they are not explained well at all. Forums like this are really good because people who have figured out a way to do something are often generous in sharing the knowledge, but it does get spread across a lot of posts and topics. It is also frustrating that manufacturers, Oly included, don't seem too willing to explain how some of the features actually work, which makes it all a bit hit-and-miss.

John

OM USer
22nd March 2015, 04:39 PM
...To create a truly helpful manual an organization needs to employ skilled, experienced writers – and allow them the time necessary to undertake the work. That absorbs money and in the business climate of today is likely to receive a low priority.

I think this happens with all tech based solutions, I certainly see it in my own field.

As to the specifics of the Olympus manual I am not sure what name to give it. It is not a manual, nor is it a user guide. Perhaps as pointed out it is really just a list of features.

PeterBirder
22nd March 2015, 05:29 PM
Hi Peter,

My recent failure to find the way to reveal some items in the Olympus OMD E-M10 menu system brings to mind a wider issue – the structure of user guides etc. The Olympus manual contains a mass of detail, unfortunately set out in a labyrinthine form, but Olympus is merely one among many organizations that issue unsatisfactory manuals.

As I see it, the issue is that they focus primarily upon features of the device, rather than leading the reader towards the resolution of her/his problem.

In short they are feature-based as opposed to task-based.

Perhaps the most memorable manual I have ever encountered was that accompanying my old Hewlett-Packard programmable calculator, the HP-41C. It took you gently by the hand and led you patiently through each step needed to complete a particular task – demonstrating, IMHO, that the producer gave serious thought to the user.

To create a truly helpful manual an organization needs to employ skilled, experienced writers – and allow them the time necessary to undertake the work. That absorbs money and in the business climate of today is likely to receive a low priority.

Being new to the forum, I don’t know whether a rather long submission like this is appropriate. No doubt somebody will tell me if that’s the case.

Regards,

Tom

Hi Tom.

Your observations about Olympus (and other) manuals) are spot on.

Those of us who have been using Olympus cameras for a while have an advantage in that the development of the cameras is evolutionary rather than revolutionary. This means that we have become familiar with the foibles of the Olympus way of doing things (and writing manuals) so that once you are familiar with one camera the next generation is quite similar and the manual is a "cut and paste" job with additions/amendments for the new features. However, we still get caught out quite often:) when starting to use a feature we may not have tried to use previously ( Olympus cameras are probably the most customisable on the market and few users I suspect are likely to ever use all the features). Another factor is of course the translation from Japanese to English. I recall reading somewhere that the Japanese language is not ideal for use in engineering and science since much is conveyed by inference and context and is not ideal for expressing finite ideas and that Japanese engineers and scientists often have to "think in English" (or "Japanese English":) )

However, to sharpen your learning curve with your camera the E-M10 customisation page on John Foster's site http://www.biofos.com/ should be invaluable. John is an Olympus afficianado of long standing and his "How to Customise" articles go a long way to explaining what the camera functions as described in the manuals actually mean and the best ways to use them.

Regards.*chr

ps. I see you are in Basel. My neighbour's daughter married a Swiss guy and lives in Basel with their young family. After graduating from Heidelberg University she worked for a German company translating manuals into English.:D

Wee man
22nd March 2015, 06:08 PM
Really; decoding the manual is an initative test to see if you are a suitable candidate for this site!

You have passed one test ie. If in doubt ask for help.

But by starting by reading the manual puts you on shakey ground.

On a serious note welcome to the site, I do agree the manual can be a nightmare.

Tom Shino
23rd March 2015, 10:49 PM
Hi,
So many replies, thanks.

About 2 weeks ago I found this helpful video:-

Olympus OM-D E-M10 - Tips & Tricks (English Version) - YouTube

Rolf spends lots of time on menu items and I began to understand but the amount of material is rather large to store in my ageing brain. At least he goes further than most reviews.

In a couple of days I'm hoping to be able to collect the PRO 12-40, f2.8 lens that I have ordered. Now that the weather is improving I feel encouraged to to spend more time outside.

Regards,

Tom

Miketoll
24th March 2015, 09:33 AM
Just about to sit down and watch that video thanks.
You will find the 12-40 Pro is a superb lens but to me it makes the camera a little front heavy and less easy to handle so I purchased the EM-10's little grip which cured the problem. For my fairly large hands the grip improves the handling no end adding negligible weight and is now a permanent fixture.

Miketoll
24th March 2015, 10:22 AM
Too much for my aged brain to take in in one go too! Hope my head ends up facing the right way when it stops spinning! :D Like the comment he makes about "you can get lost in the menus so be a little bit careful"
Good video overview though.

byegad
24th March 2015, 01:23 PM
Problems with instruction manuals and the like are not new!

I remember being given a new Bell and Howell cine Projector with no paperwork, but a case of film that came with it had a vague diagram on the top vaguely suggesting how to thread the film. After several tries we ran the film, which showed you in simple and easy steps...



how to thread the film!*smash:mad:

craig1912
24th March 2015, 06:42 PM
Must be my age but I have trouble with PDFs manuals. I got a printed one from here which I can take with me and refer to easily.

http://www.oldtimercameras.com/olympus/stock/Model.asp?Model=27493&ModelPage=true