Over the year or so that we have had the EOS RP in our studio we have gotten used to some of it’s strengths and weakness, and have developed some ways of working with the camera to bring out the best it is capable of!
Tip #1: Use the Zone AF focus point.
The EOS RP does not quite have the mind-blowing tracking abilities of the newer RF cameras like the EOS R5, R6, and the EOS R3. What it does have however is still an accurate and reliable focusing system based on Canon’s Dual Pixel AF. However, the best results come from using the Zone AF focus mode. If you are having problems using the smaller focus boxes it might be a good idea to try this mode instead.
Tip #2: Use the touch & drag AF point selection.
One of the cool features of all the RF cameras is that you can just drag your thumb on the rear screen while you are looking through the viewfinder to move the focus point around. It seems a bit odd at first but once you get used to it it’s fairly intuitive. Also, remember that you can choose whether to use the whole screen or the left or right half of the screen for this purpose. I typically choose to use the right half of the screen so that my nose touching the screen does not interfere with the focus selection.
Tip #3: Use “Servo” AF for better tracking of moving subjects.
For years Canon cameras have had “Servo” mode AF, but it has gotten especially good in recent years. Since the AF runs the entire time, you half press the shutter button it is very good for shooting moving subjects. It’s an absolute must if you want to capture kids or pets running around!
Tip #4: Use HDR video recording when shooting video.
Surprise!! The EOS RP actually has a mode that increases the dynamic range when shooting video. It is simply called “HDR movie”. With your camera in video mode simply go to the very first menu item and choose “Shooting Mode” then make the appropriate selection.
Tip #5: The RP works great with Canon’s L lenses.
I was surprised to find that the RP works great with Canon’s L lenses, perhaps even better than the non-L lenses do. The RP’s 26 Megapixel sensor provides a lot of resolution and the 4k video with HDR can get your surprisingly close to professional looking output. This is why I think the RP is a great value, it does seem to get a little bit better with Canon’s best RF L lenses.
Tip #6: Turn the camera off every chance you get.
When it comes to using the EOS RP one of the big challenges is managing the battery life. You can really improve things by being diligent about turning the camera off every chance you get. I have personally seen the battery life vary between 250 shots and go as high as nearly 800 shots. If you really want to maximize the number of images you get from the camera this one simple trick can easily double the number of pictures you can take.
Tip #7: Use face tracking.
The EOS RP does include face tracking auto focus in its feature set so I recommend giving it a try to see if it works for you. In many scenarios like shooting portraits it is pretty effective and accurate. Overall a nice feature to have on a relatively inexpensive camera.
Tip #8: Use an RF mount Nano USM lens when shooting video.
The EOS RP is a competent video camera. If you really want to get the best out of it though you need to try the RF Nano USM lenses. The RF 24-240mm and RF 70-200’s all have Nano USM focus motors. Nano USM is great for photography, but it is specifically designed to also be excellent for video as the motors are near silent and can make very smooth and consistent focus pulls. The next best thing in Canon’s lineup for video are the STM lenses which are typically found in the lowest tier of lenses Canon makes but they’re designed to be great for video.
Tip #9: Carry a couple extra batteries.
The RP battery life is good not great, it can definitely run out quickly if you’re not careful. I highly recommend keeping a couple charged batteries with you to keep your RP shooting all day long.
Tip #10: Shoot often!
The best way to get better at using your RP? Using your RP! Get out there and experiment with it. So you don’t have that gimble you wanted yet? Who cares, mess around with the RP and see what you can get just shooting hand held. Just go out and have fun with the camera and learn all you can while you have the opportunity.