Canon® EOS 60D For Dummies®

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Table of Contents

A Quick Look at What’s Ahead
Part I: Fast Track to Super Snaps
Part II: Working with Picture Files
Part III: Taking Creative Control
Part IV: The Part of Tens
Icons and Other Stuff to Note
About the Software Shown in This Book
eCheat Sheet
Practice, Be Patient, and Have Fun!
Part I: Fast Track to Super Snaps
Chapter 1: Getting the Lay of the Land
Working with the Movable Monitor
Getting Comfortable with Your Lens
Attaching a lens
Removing a lens
Using an IS (Image Stabilizer) lens
Manually focusing
Zooming in and out
Working with Memory Cards
Exploring External Camera Features
Topside controls
Back-of-the-body controls
Front odds and ends
Adjusting the Viewfinder Focus
Ordering from Camera Menus
Using the Quick Control Screen
Using the Quick Control dial
Locking and unlocking the Quick Control dial
Accessing Custom Functions from the Quick Control screen
Monitoring Critical Camera Settings
The Info button: Choosing what the screen shows
Decoding viewfinder data
Using the Shooting Settings display
Checking the Camera Settings display
Checking out the top LCD panel
Reviewing Basic Setup Options
Setup Menu 1
Setup Menu 2
Setup Menu 3
More customization options
Chapter 2: Choosing Basic Picture Settings
Choosing an Exposure Mode
Changing the Drive Mode
Using the Flash
Exploring basic flash modes
Using Red-Eye Reduction flash
Controlling Picture Quality
Diagnosing quality problems
Decoding the Quality options
Considering Resolution: Large, Medium, or Small?
Understanding File Type (JPEG or Raw)
JPEG: The imaging (and Web) standard
Raw (CR2): The purist’s choice
Our take: Choose Fine or Raw
Chapter 3: Taking Great Pictures, Automatically
Getting Great Point-and-Shoot Results
Shooting in the Fully Automatic Modes
Full Auto mode
Automatic scene modes (Image Zone modes)
Gaining More Control with Creative Auto
Adding in Ambience and Lighting
Chapter 4: Exploring Live View Shooting and Movie Making
Using Your Monitor as a Viewfinder
Taking Photos in Live View
Customizing Live View
Autofocusing in Live View mode
Taking a shot in Live View mode
Customizing Live View shooting data
Using the Quick Control screen in Live View mode
Recording Movies
Changing the information display
Setting basic recording options
Shooting your first movie
Playing movies
Editing movies
Part II: Working with Picture Files
Chapter 5: Picture Playback
Disabling and Adjusting Instant Review
Viewing Images in Playback Mode
Jumping through images
Viewing multiple images at a time
Rotating vertical pictures
Zooming in for a closer view
Entering Quick Control during playback
Viewing Picture Data
Working display controls
No Information (image only) display mode
Displaying basic information
Detailed Information display mode
Understanding Histogram display mode
Deleting Photos
Erasing single images
Erasing all images on your memory card
Erasing selected images
Deleting versus formatting: What’s the diff?
Protecting Photos
Rating Photos
Chapter 6: Downloading, Printing, and Sharing Your Photos
Choosing the Right Photo Software
Four free photo programs
Four advanced photo editing programs
Sending Pictures to the Computer
Connecting your camera and computer
Starting the transfer process
Downloading images with Canon tools
Going Eye-Fi
Processing Raw (CR2) Files
Processing Raw images in the camera
Processing Raw files in Canon Digital Photo Professional
Planning for Perfect Prints
Check the pixel count before you print
Get print and monitor colors in sync
Preparing Pictures for E-Mail and Online Sharing
Part III: Taking Creative Control
Chapter 7: Getting Creative with Exposure and Lighting
Kicking Your Camera into Advanced Gear
Introducing the Exposure Trio: Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO
Understanding exposure-setting side effects
Doing the exposure balancing act
Monitoring Exposure Settings
Choosing an Exposure Metering Mode
Setting ISO, f-stop, and Shutter Speed
Controlling ISO
Adjusting aperture and shutter speed
Sorting through Your Camera’s Exposure-Correction Tools
Overriding autoexposure results with Exposure Compensation
Improving high-contrast shots with Highlight Tone Priority
Experimenting with Auto Lighting Optimizer
Correcting lens vignetting with Peripheral Illumination Correction
Locking Autoexposure Settings
Bracketing Exposures Automatically
Adjusting AEB
Putting AEB to work in HDR imaging
Using Flash in Advanced Exposure Modes
Understanding your camera’s approach to flash
Adjusting flash power with Flash Exposure Compensation
Locking the flash exposure
Exploring more flash options
Using an external flash unit
Chapter 8: Manipulating Focus and Color
Reviewing Focus Basics
Using the AF-ON Button
Adjusting Autofocus Performance
Selecting an autofocus point
Changing the AF (autofocus) mode
Manipulating Depth of Field
Checking depth of field
Controlling Color
Correcting colors with white balance
Changing the White Balance setting
Setting the white balance temperature
Creating a custom White Balance setting
Fine-tuning White Balance settings
Bracketing shots with white balance
Choosing a Color Space: sRGB versus Adobe RGB
Exploring Picture Styles
Chapter 9: Putting It All Together
Recapping Basic Picture Settings
Setting Up for Specific Scenes
Shooting still portraits
Capturing action
Capturing scenic vistas
Capturing dynamic close-ups
Part IV: The Part of Tens
Chapter 10: Ten Creative (and Practical) Features
Using the Creative Filters
Creating Your Very Own Camera Menu
Creating Your Own Exposure Mode
Connecting Your Camera to a TV
Presenting a Slide Show
Enabling Mirror Lockup
Adding Cleaning Instructions to Images
Adding Copyright Data to Your Image Metadata
Using the Electronic Level
Using Custom Folders
Chapter 11: Ten More Ways to Customize Your Camera
Custom Function, What’s Your Function?
Changing the Direction of the Dials
Changing the Function of the Set Button
Specifying the AF Point Selection Method
Customizing Exposure and Focus Lock Options
Disabling the Red Focus Points
Disabling the AF-Assist Beam
Specialized Lenses
Controlling the Lens Focus Drive
Replacing the Focusing Screen
Creating Custom Picture Styles
Cheat Sheet

Canon® EOS 60D For Dummies®

by Julie Adair King and Robert Correll


About the Authors

Julie Adair King is the author of many books about digital photography and imaging, including the best-selling Digital Photography For Dummies. Her most recent titles include a series of For Dummies guides to popular digital SLR cameras, including the Canon Rebel T1i/500D, XSi/450D, XS/1000D, and XTi/400D. Other works include Digital Photography Before & After Makeovers, Digital Photo Projects For Dummies, Julie King’s Everyday Photoshop For Photographers, Julie King’s Everyday Photoshop Elements, and Shoot Like a Pro!: Digital Photography Techniques. When not writing, King teaches digital photography at such locations as the Palm Beach Photographic Centre. A graduate of Purdue University, she resides in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Robert Correll is an author, a photographer, and a musician with a lifetime of film and digital photography experience. He is a photo editing, photo management, raw processing, HDR application, and graphics software expert. His latest titles include Digital SLR Photography All-in-One For Dummies, High Dynamic Range Digital Photography For Dummies, High Dynamic Range Photography Photo Workshop, and Photo Retouching and Restoration Using Corel PaintShop Photo Pro, 2nd edition. He’s done a bunch of other stuff, too. When not writing, Robert enjoys his family life, playing the guitar, producing and recording music, and consulting. Robert graduated from the United States Air Force Academy.

Authors' Acknowledgments

This book was a team effort from start to finish. Everyone contributed their time, skill, and professional acumen to try to produce the best possible product for you.

We would like to thank everyone on the For Dummies team for all their hard work, expertise, and dedication to this project, including Steve Hayes (Executive Editor), Nicole Sholly (Project Editor), Teresa Artman (Senior Copy Editor), David Hall (Technical Reviewer), and many others who contributed to this project.

Special thanks go to Roger Cicala of for his timely support and professional service.

Finally, we thank our families and friends for supporting and encouraging us during all the hard work and sleepless nights.

Publisher’s Acknowledgments

We’re proud of this book; please send us your comments through our online registration form located at

Some of the people who helped bring this book to market include the following:

Acquisitions, Editorial, and Media Development

Project Editor: Nicole Sholly

Executive Editor: Steve Hayes

Senior Copy Editor: Teresa Artman

Technical Editor: David Hall

Editorial Manager: Kevin Kirschner

Editorial Assistant: Amanda Graham

Sr. Editorial Assistant: Cherie Case

Cartoons: Rich Tennant (

Composition Services

Project Coordinator: Patrick Redmond

Layout and Graphics: Thomas Borah, Samantha K. Cherolis, Timothy C. Detrick, Joyce Haughey

Proofreaders: Melissa Cossell, Linda Seifert

Indexer: Potomac Indexing, LLC

Publishing and Editorial for Technology Dummies

Richard Swadley, Vice President and Executive Group Publisher

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Mary C. Corder, Editorial Director

Publishing for Consumer Dummies

Diane Graves Steele, Vice President and Publisher

Composition Services

Debbie Stailey, Director of Composition Services


The Canon EOS 60D is a ground-breaking digital SLR camera that offers the best of two worlds, bridging the gap between the entry-level Canon EOS Rebel line and the much more expensive, professional-level Canon models like the EOS 7D and beyond. The 60D is designed to sit in a sweet spot of price and performance: accessible to beginners and yet powerful enough for more advanced photographers.

This camera offers the range of advanced controls and features that experienced photographers demand (impressive high ISO performance, great top-end shutter speed, a top LCD screen, plenty of flash options, higher sync-speed, flexibility, customizability, and more) plus an assortment of tools designed to help beginners be successful (a cool articulated LCD monitor, great Quick Control screen, Live View, easy-to-use shooting modes, and more). Adding to the fun, this camera also continues the Canon commitment to cameras that can record high-definition digital movies.

The 60D is so feature packed, in fact, that sorting out everything can be a challenge, especially if you’re new to digital photography or SLR photography, or both. For starters, you may not even be sure what SLR stands for (single lens reflex; now you know!), what that means, or how it affects your picture taking, let alone have a clue about all the other techie terms you encounter in your camera manual: resolution, aperture, white balance, format. If you’re so overwhelmed by all the controls on your camera that you haven’t yet ventured beyond fully automatic picture-taking mode, this is the book for you.

In Canon EOS 60D For Dummies, you can discover not only what each bell and whistle on your camera does but also when, where, why, and how to best use each bell and whistle. Unlike many photography books, this one doesn’t require any previous knowledge of photography or digital imaging to make sense of concepts, either. In classic For Dummies style, everything is explained in easy-to-understand language, with lots of illustrations to help clear up any confusion.

In short, what you have in your hands is the paperback version of an in-depth photography workshop tailored specifically to your Canon picture-taking powerhouse. Whether your interests lie in taking family photos, exploring nature and travel photography, or snapping product shots for your business, you’ll get the information you need to capture the images you envision.

A Quick Look at What’s Ahead

This book is organized into four parts, each devoted to a different aspect of using your camera. Although chapters flow in a sequence designed to take you from absolute beginner to experienced user, we also tried to make each chapter as self-standing as possible so that you can explore the topics that interest you in any order you please.

The following sections offer brief previews of each part. If you’re eager to find details on a specific topic, the index shows you exactly where to look.

Part I: Fast Track to Super Snaps

Part I contains four chapters that help you get up and running with your EOS 60D:

check.png Chapter 1, “Getting the Lay of the Land,” offers a tour of the external controls on your camera, shows you how to navigate camera menus to access internal options, and walks you through initial camera setup and customization steps.

check.png Chapter 2, “Choosing Basic Picture Settings,” introduces you to the Basic shooting modes on the Mode dial; different drive modes; basic flash photography; and picture quality settings, such as the resolution (pixel count), file format, file size, and picture quality.

check.png Chapter 3, “Taking Great Pictures, Automatically,” shows you how to get the best results when using the camera’s fully automatic exposure modes, including Portrait, Sports, and Landscape. The camera also features the Creative Auto mode, which makes it easy for you to take a little more artistic control over your photos.

check.png Chapter 4, “Exploring Live View Shooting and Movie Making,” explains how to review your pictures on the camera monitor, delete unwanted images, and protect your favorites from accidental erasure. In addition, this chapter introduces you to Live View shooting, in which you can use your monitor as a viewfinder. We also explain your camera’s movie-recording features.

Part II: Working with Picture Files

This part of the book discusses the often-confusing aspect of reviewing the photos while still on the camera, and then moving them from camera to computer and beyond.

check.png Chapter 5, “Picture Playback,” explores the Playback function of your 60D. You’ll see how to view photos in Playback mode; quickly jump back and forth between photos; rotate them; zoom in on them; change how much information is displayed; and delete, protect, and rate them.

check.png Chapter 6, “Downloading, Printing, and Sharing Your Photos,” guides you through transferring pictures from your camera memory card to your computer’s hard drive or other storage device. Just as important, this chapter explains software options for managing, editing, printing, and sharing your collection.

Part III: Taking Creative Control

Chapters in this part help you unleash the full creative power of your camera by moving into semiautomatic or manual photography modes.

check.png Chapter 7, “Getting Creative with Exposure and Lighting,” covers the all-important topic of exposure, starting with an explanation of three critical exposure controls: aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. This chapter also discusses your camera’s advanced exposure modes (P, Tv, Av, M, B, and C), explains exposure options (such as metering mode and exposure compensation), and offers tips for using the built-in flash.

check.png Chapter 8, “Manipulating Focus and Color,” provides help with controlling those aspects of your pictures. Look here for information about your camera’s automatic and manual focusing features as well as for details about color controls, such as white balance and the Picture Style options.

check.png Chapter 9, “Putting It All Together,” summarizes all the techniques explained in earlier chapters, providing a quick-reference guide to the camera settings and shooting strategies that produce the best results for specific types of pictures: portraits, action shots, landscape scenes, close-ups, and more.

Part IV: The Part of Tens

In famous For Dummies tradition, the book concludes with top-ten lists containing additional bits of information and advice.

check.png Chapter 10, “Ten Creative (and Practical) Features,” expands your knowledge of your 60D beyond the basics and covers fun stuff, such as applying creative filters to your photos, creating a custom menu, registering your own exposure mode, locking up the mirror, adding copyright information, and more.

check.png Chapter 11, “Ten More Ways to Customize Your Camera,” covers interesting bonus factoids that show you how to customize the camera to work how you want it to. You’ll discover how to change what the Set button does, turn off those red autofocus points, change your focus screen, and create custom picture styles. Sounds like fun!

Icons and Other Stuff to Note

If this isn’t your first For Dummies book, you may be familiar with the large, round icons that decorate its margins. If not, here’s your very own icon-decoder ring:

check.png remember_4c.eps We apply this icon either to introduce information that’s especially worth storing in your brain’s long-term memory or to remind you of a fact that may have been displaced from that memory by another pressing fact.

check.png warning_4c.eps When you see this icon, look alive. It indicates a potential danger zone that can result in much wailing and teeth-gnashing if ignored.

check.png technicalstuff_4c.eps Lots of information in this book is of a technical nature; digital photography is a technical animal, after all. When we present a detail that’s useful mainly for impressing your geeky friends, we mark it with this icon.

check.png tip_4c.eps A Tip icon flags information that saves you time, effort, money, or another valuable resource, including your sanity.

Additionally, we need to point out a few other details that will help you use this book:

check.png Camera buttons and icons: Replicas of some of your camera’s buttons and onscreen graphics also appear in the margins of some paragraphs and in some tables. These images are handy reminders of the appearance of the button or option being discussed.

check.png Software menu commands: In sections that cover software, a series of words connected by an arrow indicates commands you choose a program menu. For example, if a step tells you, “Choose FilePrint,” click the File menu to unfurl it and then click the Print command on the menu.

check.png Camera firmware: Firmware is the internal software that controls many of your camera’s operations. This book was written using version 1.0.6 of the firmware, which was current at the time of publication.

Occasionally, Canon releases firmware updates, and you should check its Web site ( periodically to find out whether any updates are available. (Chapter 1 tells you how to determine which firmware version your camera is running.) Firmware updates typically don’t carry major feature changes; they’re mostly used to solve technical glitches in existing features. An exception to this rule is in the new world of high-definition video; some recent Canon firmware updates have included neat and useful video (and sound) recording improvements. If you download an update, be sure to read the accompanying description of what it accomplishes so that you can adapt this book’s instructions as necessary.

About the Software Shown in This Book

Providing specific instructions for performing photo organizing and editing tasks requires that we feature specific software. In sections that cover file downloading, organizing, printing, and e-mail sharing, we showcase the Canon EOS Utility along with Canon Digital Photo Professional (for editing those Raw files), Canon ZoomBrowser EX (for Windows users) and ImageBrowser (for Mac users). These programs are part of the free software suite that ships with your camera.

Rest assured, though, that the tools used in these programs work similarly in other programs, so you should be able to easily adapt the steps to whatever software you use. (Of course, we recommend that you read your software manual for details.)

eCheat Sheet

As a little added bonus, you can find an electronic version of the famous For Dummies Cheat Sheet at

The Cheat Sheet contains a quick-reference guide to all the buttons, dials, switches, and exposure modes on your 60D. Log on, print it out, and tuck it in your camera bag for times when you can’t carry this book with you.

Practice, Be Patient, and Have Fun!

To wrap up this preamble, we want to stress that if you initially think that digital photography is too confusing or too technical for you, you’re in very good company. Everyone finds this stuff a little mind-boggling at first. Take it slowly, experimenting with just one or two new camera settings or techniques at first. Then, every time you go on a photo outing, make it a point to add one or two more shooting skills to your repertoire. Playfulness with your camera is encouraged!

We know that it’s hard to believe when you’re just starting out, but it truly isn’t long before everything starts to come together. With some time, patience, and practice, you’ll soon wield your camera like a pro, dialing in the necessary settings to capture your creative vision almost instinctively.

Without further ado, we invite you to grab your camera and a cup of whatever it is you prefer to sip while you read and then start exploring the rest of this book. Your EOS 60D is the perfect partner for your photographic journey, and we thank you for allowing us, in this book, to serve as your tour guides.

Please note that some special symbols used in this eBook may not display properly on all eReader devices. If you have trouble determining any symbol, please call Wiley Product Technical Support at 800-762-2974. Outside of the United States, please call 317-572-3993. You can also contact Wiley Product Technical Support at

Part I

Fast Track to Super Snaps


Making sense of all the controls on your EOS 60D isn’t a task you can complete in an afternoon — or, heck, in a week or maybe even a month. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take great-looking pictures today. By using your camera’s point-and-shoot automatic modes, you can capture terrific images with very little effort. All you do is compose the scene, and the camera takes care of almost everything else.

This part shows you how to take best advantage of your camera’s automatic features and also addresses some basic setup steps, such as adjusting the viewfinder to your eyesight and getting familiar with the camera menus, buttons, and dials. In addition, chapters in this part explain how to obtain the best picture quality whether you shoot in an automatic mode or a manual mode, and how to use your camera’s Live View and movie-making features.