Pressing the MENU button while in one of the record modes displays the record menu over the live preview image. While the menu is similar to that seen on other Sony digital cameras it does appear to have been refined some what.
Selects one of the four white balance settings:
Selects one of four ISO sensitivity settings:
Selects one of five image sizes:
JPEG Image Quality
At last Sony have given us an option of a Standard or Fine quality
Record Mode (Image Type)
Select output image type:
Adjust the flash output power up or down a single level, this does not affect the exposure values (shutter speed / aperture) but simply controls the amount of power supplied to the flash.
Allows you to select a picture effect to be applied to the image
after it's taken, the live preview changes to reflect the selected
Allows you to control the camera's internal sharpening algorithm +/- two levels, sharpening is normally applied by a digital camera after the CFA Bayer interpolation stage, this allows you to control the amount of sharpening applied.
The playback menu is relatively simple offering a limited number of options which appear along the bottom of the review image, detailed below.
Deletes the current image, requires confirmation. Deleting the last image from a CD-RW recovers the space taken up by the image (you get the space back) **. On a CD-R deleting an image only marks it as deleted, you don't get any space back on the disc.
|Protect||Toggles protection flag for current image (read-only attribute)|
|Toggles the printing flag for the current image (updates a DPOF text file on the disc), can only be used with DPOF compatible printers|
|Slide||Commences a slide show of all images on the disc, allows you to select delay times of 3, 5, 10, 30 or 60 secs and if the slideshow repeats|
|Resize||Create a resized copy of the current image: 2048 x 1536, 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 640 x 480|
|Rotate||Rotate the current image 90 degrees left or right, doesn't actually rotate the JPEG file but rather flags the image rotation in the EXIF header (only understood by the camera)|
** On further investigation it turns out that the CD300 can only recover space by deleting images in a sequence from the last you took, for example if you take ten shots and delete the first five you won't get any space back, however if you delete the last five you will.
Another new sight on a Sony digital camera is a dedicated Setup mode, taking some of the less often changed settings away from the record menu and putting them away in a dedicated menu makes a lot more sense and allows for greater flexibility and expansion later. A welcome sight. The menu itself is split into four categories:
Setup: Disc Tool
|Finalize||Finalize prepares the disc to be used in a standard (at least, most modern) CD-ROM drive. With a CD-R disc you can perform the initialize / finalize sequence more than once (though each time you lose some storage space). With a CD-RW disc this space is recovered with an "Unfinalize".|
|Format||CD-RW only: Because CD-RW discs are "Read/Write" they can be completely erased, selecting the FORMAT option (from the SETUP menu) completely erases the contents of the CD-RW so it can be used again afresh.|
|Initialize||Before you can use a CD-R/RW disc it must be "Initialized", this writes basic header information onto the CD-R so that the camera can recognise it and begin to write a file table when images are saved.|
|Unfinalize||In order to write to a CD-RW after it's been finalized the camera will automatically prompt you to unfinalize it, this restores the space used by the finalize process.|
|Scene Selection||Specifies the SCN exposure mode:
Twilight (low light shots, long exposures)
Landscape (focus locked to infinity, small apertures, flash cancel)
Portrait (large apertures)
|Moving Image||Selects the movie image format:
MPEG Movie (320 x 240, 320 x 240 HQ or 160 x 120)
Clip Motion (Animated GIF @ 160 x 120 or 80 x 60)
|Date / Time||Enables / Disables stamping of a date
and/or time onto image:
Day & Time
|Digital Zoom||Enables / Disables digital zoom:
|Bracket Step||Sets the exposure step for bracket
+/- 1.0 EV
+/- 0.7 EV
+/- 0.3 EV
|Red Eye Reduction||Enables / Disables red eye reduction
|AF Illuminator||Enables / Disables AF Illuminator
Setup: Setup 1
|File Number||Selects file numbering system:
Series (images are numbered in a continuous sequence)
Normal (numbers reset after each change of Memory Stick)
|Conversion||Sets up the cameras focusing and zoom
system to work correctly with conversion lenses:
|Language||Selects menu language:
|Clock Set||Sets the camera's internal clock:
Setup: Setup 2
|LCD Brightness||Controls LCD image brightness:
|LCD Backlight||Controls strength of the LCD backlight:
Bright (at the expense of battery life)
|Beep||Sets the cameras beep:
Shutter (enables the annoying "cuurchk" shutter noise)
|Video Out||Selects video output format:
|USB Connect||Sets USB connection type:
Kudos to Sony for the LCD Backlight control, it makes a HUGE difference to the visibility of the (already good) LCD in bright ambient light, obviously there's a price to pay in shorter battery life but it's what we've been asking for and they've delivered.
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