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Mode dial

On the top right corner (from the back) of the camera is the new stylish mode dial, sculpted out of a solid piece of metal it has a very clean firm feel clicking smoothly into each position, the diamond shaped burr effect on the outside gives it a really nice tactile feel (this, I'm sure, thanks to F.A. Porsche).

Mode dial function

Continuous exposure mode

An exposure mode which allows you to take a burst of shots (by holding down the shutter release). In this mode you can take up to 5 frames at approximately 3.3 frames per second (at any image size / quality). Useful, but horribly crippled by the lack of creative options, you can't set exposure compensation, white balance or sensitivity in this mode.

Manual record mode

Despite its name this is still a fully automatic exposure mode with more creative options, you can change exposure compensation, white balance, sensitivity (ISO equiv.), metering, sharpness, flash compensation, manual focus over what is available in auto record mode. However, this isn't a "manual exposure" mode, there's no aperture or shutter priority and neither is their a full manual exposure mode.
AUTO Auto record mode

This is the true point-and-shoot mode, white balance is locked to auto, there's no exposure compensation nor can you set other options such as image sharpness. There is curiously a voice caption mode available in auto record mode, which, for some odd reason doesn't exist in manual record mode...
SP Special Position mode

Select from one of four pre-programmed exposure modes:

 • B/W (black and white)
 • Night - shutter as slow as 3 secs, reduced flash modes
 • Scene / landscape - small apertures (large DOF), no flash
 • Portrait - large apertures (small DOF), soft image, all flash modes
Movie Mode

Shoot short movie clips at a fixed 320 x 240, 10 fps, maximum 160 seconds per clip.
Audio Recording

Turn your digital camera into a digital voice recorder! In this mode the shutter release acts as the record / stop button of a voice recorder and you can take annotations of up to 33 minutes on a 16 MB SmartMedia card, up to 272 minutes on a 128 MB SmartMedia card.


Mode switch / Power button

On the rear of the camera is the second most important control, in the center is the main power button, press to power on, press to power off. Surrounding it is the camera mode switch, up for record, down for play. This separation of play / record selection from the exposure mode is very welcome and makes reviewing images after shooting very straightforward and logical.


Rear of camera controls

Other controls on the rear of the camera are described below.

Rear control buttons

OPEN Open Flash

Pressing this button pops the flash light up out of the top of the camera, there's a short delay (around 3 seconds) during which time the LCD powers off to enable the flash capacitor to charge to full power.
BACK

Back

Steps backwards / cancels menu operations.

MENU / OK Menu / OK

Enters current mode menu / confirms menu selection.


Display panel

Carried forward from the 4700Z is the unique "display panel" control, a combination of a lit LCD and four arrow keys provide a flexible set of easy to understand controls which change their function depending on the current mode and camera settings. The first thing to note is that the panel is lit either orange for record mode or green for playback. Below is a selection different panel layouts in different camera modes.

Power the camera on and it says "Hello !" (cute) Power it off and it says "See you!" (cute, but cheesy) Layout in playback mode, left / right to scroll through images, up / down to magnify.
Layout in manual record mode, left for macro focus, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom. Layout in continuous record mode, left for macro mode, up / down for zoom. Layout in auto record mode, same as manual record: left for macro focus, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom.
Layout in B&W scene position, same as manual record: left for macro focus, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom. Layout in night scene position, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom. Layout in landscape scene position, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom.
Layout in portrait scene position, right for flash mode, up / down for zoom. Layout in movie clip record mode, up / down for zoom. Informational display in audio record mode.
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