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Top of camera controls

The top of the P700 is very simple, a push on/off power button to the left of the shutter release which is surrounded by the zoom lever. One complaint about the power button is that it instantly powers the camera off, rather than requiring a second or two hold. The shutter release button has a good 'definite' half-press position and a click to full-press. The zoom lever doubles up its function as thumbnail index / magnify in play mode.

Rear of camera controls

As you can see the rear of the P700 has a large number of controls, from the column running down the left side of the LCD monitor, two above it and a cluster on the right. The mode dial is well positioned and is easy to turn using your thumb, other controls are less helpful, notably the five to the left side of the camera which will need either a shift of grip or use of the left hand.

Mode Dial

Play

Enter play mode, displays the last image taken or the last image on the media card (detailed later in this review).

Auto Exposure

This is the camera's point and shoot mode, although it's worth noting that it doesn't have a separate Program AE exposure mode hence you get full control over all exposure settings such as sensitivity, flash mode, continuous, exposure compensation etc.

Best Shot

Switches to the "Best Shot" scene mode, this is essentially an array of pre-programmed camera configurations for various types of scene. The P700 features no less than 27 built-in scene modes (listed on our specifications page) plus manually registered scenes (from the current camera settings). These include some sophisticated features such as "Coupling" (combine two shots), "Pre-shots" (shoot background first) and "Business cards and documents" (identifies document and automatically straightens it).
A Aperture Priority Exposure

In this mode you select the aperture and the camera will calculate the correct shutter speed depending on metered exposure, exposure compensation and ISO sensitivity. Use the left and right arrows on the 4-way controller to change aperture. Available apertures:

• Wide: F2.8, F3.2, F3.5, F4.0, F4.5, F5.0, F5.6, F6.3, F7.1, F8.0
• Tele: F4.0, F4.3, F4.9, F5.5, F6.2, F7.0, F7.9, F8.8, F9.9, F11.1
S Shutter Priority Exposure

In this mode you select the shutter speed and the camera will calculate the correct aperture depending on metered exposure, exposure compensation and ISO sensitivity. Use the left and right arrows on the 4-way controller to change shutter speed. Available shutter speeds:

Bulb, 60, 50, 40,30, 25, 20, 15, 13, 10, 8, 6, 5, 4, 3.2, 2.5, 2, 1.6, 1.3, 1, 0.8, 0.6, 0.5, 0.4, 0.3, 1/4, 1/5, 1/6, 1/8, 1/10, 1/13, 1/15, 1/20, 1/25, 1/30, 1/40, 1/50, 1/60, 1/80, 1/100, 1/125, 1/160, 1/200, 1/250, 1/320, 1/400, 1/500, 1/640, 1/800, 1/1000, 1/1250, 1/1600, 1/2000 sec *
M

Manual Exposure

In this mode you select the aperture and the shutter speed from any combination of the above. If you press the SET button the camera will show a graphical representation of the selected exposure including the difference to the metered exposure.

Movie Clip

The P700 can record movies at 320 x 240, 15 fps with audio an limited only by the amount of storage space available. Quite a few competitive cameras offer full VGA movie clips and at high frame rates.

Audio Clip

The P700 has a dedicated audio clip mode which allows you to record audio to compressed WAV file; 8 Khz, 16-bit Mono (IMA ADPCM). Press the SET button during recording to place Index marks in the audio. In addition you can also attach audio clips to images at the time of recording.

* Aperture / Shutter speed limitations

Because the P700 has a combined aperture and shutter mechanism there are certain limitations attached to the higher shutter speeds, this means that shutter speeds above 1/1000 sec are only available with small apertures:

  • 1/2000 sec - F5.6 or smaller
  • 1/1600 sec - F4.5 or smaller
  • 1/1250 sec - F3.5 or smaller
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