Sony MVC-FD7

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The Sony MVC-FD7 is a digital camera with a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels. As digital cameras go, it is relatively large and has limited resolution.  For our purposes, however, it does have one huge advantage - the storage medium is a standard 3.5" diskette which can be used in a computer, making file storage and transfer simple, especially when working with a class.  Other positive features include a decent optical system capable of focusing really close (if you hold the camera up to a strong light with the lens cap on the camera focuses on the inside of the lens cap), ease of use, and a built-in flash.

Using the MVC-FD7 - Basic Instructions

  1. Obtain a floppy disk and insert it in the camera.  To insert the disk, slide the release latch (dark blue arrow, right) down.  This will open a door on the left side of the camera. The disk should be inserted with its sliding metal door to the right (i.e. the "bottom" of the disk).  The label should be on the side of the disk facing you.  The disk will not go in any other way, so if it doesn't fit, DON'T FORCE IT!  Push the disk all the way in until it latches, then close the door.
  2. Turn the camera on using the power switch (yellow arrow).
  3. Set the camera to "camera" (light blue arrow).
  4. Remove the lens cap on the front of the camera.  The image should now appear in the viewfinder at the back.
  5. You can zoom in or zoom out using the Wide/Telephoto switch (purple arrow).
  6. When the picture looks tight, take the shot using the shutter release (yellow arrow, picture above [front view]). Press the button halfway down to lock the shot; all the way down to take it.
  7. The camera will take about 10 seconds to record the image on the floppy.  You can't take another image until it is done recording.
To remove the floppy, open the door and press the black tab (light green arrow).

Other Features:

These features are accessible on the back panel:
  1. You can activate the flash (blue circle).  The flash only works from 6 - 13 feet; don't use it for close ups.
  2. You can use various picture effects by pressing the Picture Effect button (yellow circle).  These effects are recorded onto the floppy.
  3. You can set the camera to various program modes.  These adjust the "shutter speed" and aperture.  The modes are:
    Portrait Mode - large aperture
    Sports Mode - freezes motion
    Beach Mode - backlit situations
    Sunset Mode - dark situations
    Landscape Mode - distant objects, or looking out a window

    Each of these modes sets limits on near and far focus; it is best to experiment and see which one works best.  Remember, digital film is cheap!

  4. The Display button (red box) turns various indicators on or off in the viewfinder.
  5. Menu button (dark green arrow): used in conjunction with the menu boxes on the viewfinder, this button allows you to highlight an object or select it. To highlight, press on the edges of the button, to select, press in the center.

 

 

  1. The Bright Buttons (red ellipse) adjust the brightness of the viewfinder, they do NOT adjust the images that are recorded.  To make recorded images brighter or darker, use the +/- EV selections on the screen.  You can select these via the menu button.
  2. On the left side of the camera (not shown) is a switch to turn the autofocus on or off, and a dial for manual focusing.
  3. To see pictures recorded on the disk, set the Mode button (light blue arrow) to Play.  The last picture on the disk will be shown.  To see other pictures, use the menu button to select the Index item on the screen, then to select one of the thumbnail images displayed.

 

These items can be selected from the Camera Menu:

With the camera in the camera mode, use the menu button to select Menu on the screen.

  1. Clock set allow you to set the clock.
  2. Beep allows you to turn the beep on or off.
  3. Field/Frame
    Use Field if camera shake is a problem
    Use Frame if the camera is mounted
    Filed gives higher quality but the image could be blurred if there is any camera shake.

 

  1. Quality - leave this set at Fine.  You can get more images on a floppy with the setting at standard, but this camera already has low resolution and you don't want it any worse.
  2. Return - exits the menu system.

 

These items can be selected from the Play Menu:

With the camera in the camera mode, use the menu button to select Menu on the screen.

  1. Clock set allow you to set the clock.
  2. Beep allows you to turn the beep on or off.
  3. Format Disk - removes all data from the disk.  Completely erases all images, even protected ones.
  4. Delete - allows you to delete all images or to select a single image to delete.  The quickest way to delete a single image is to display the image, then go to the menu.
  5. Protect - allows you to protect images from deletion.  Does not override the Format command.

 

Battery Notes:

Battery charge is displayed on the screen.  When the battery is low, it must be recharged.  To recharge the battery, you must first remove it.  The battery door is on the bottom of the camera.  Slide the latch on the door to open the door.  As you slide the latch, slide the whole door assembly towards the front of the camera; this will unlatch it and it will spring open.  Inside, a small black tab holds the battery in place.  Slide it towards the center of the camera to remove the battery, which will pop out.  Once again, do not force any of the parts.

The battery must be placed on its charging cradle to charge.  The department has several batteries for both the Sony Digital Camcorder and the Sony MVC-FD7.  Depending on the battery you use, it will take from 1 to 9 hours to charge.  The charge light on the charging cradle will go out when the battery is charged.