After charging up the battery using the provided charger (takes about one hour), insert the SD card and fresh battery, let's walk through some of the essential settings.
Don't let the numbers of setup scare you; after you set the date/time, the rest could be set to auto if you like; or play with provided settings to suit your "taste".
Let's go through some of the essentials.
stands for Display; it turns on/off the LCD display. Pressing the MENU button will show the screen settings below. We will go through the ISO, Macro/Infinity, Erase/Burst shots/Timer, Flash and FUNC
Set (short cut) settings afterward. Then, there is a slide switch to toggle between photo/video/review.
The first and second screens are mostly set by default with the exception of the 3 seconds review which is my own preference (checking the freshly taken photo for 3 seconds). The 3rd screen is straight forward; set your time zone and date/time. There is a "Stitch Assist" function not listed here; a more detail of this function and use is discussed later on.
The important setting here is to set your local TV format; for U.S. is NTSC or PAL for Canada. The next screen settings are for personal preference and have no bearing on the camera function.
These two screen settings come from photo viewing; it is particularly useful when the camera is connected to TV via the provided RCA cable. There are two nice features on the next screen settings; sound memo and voice recording. If you prefer to do some custom settings of your own ( I do), you may be interested in the followings, otherwise, this camera is ready to shoot some memorable photos.
The screen settings shown are in sequential order, activated by pressing the FUNC SET key. When Auto Mode is selected only the last two screen functions will allow access. Selecting Manual Mode all screen functions are accessible. The first screen shows manual mode is selected; here you could choose Macro, Portrait, Night Snapshot, Color Accent, Color Swap and Kid&Pet shots. The next screen shows over/under exposure in 1/3 f/stop.
The first screen shows lighting condition, color temperature or white balance. The selections are: Auto, Day Light, Cloudy, Tunsgten, Flourescent, Fluorescent H and Custom.
The second screen is "My Color" allowing the ability to set color filter: Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, B/W (black&white), Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red and Custom.
The third screen allows the choice of three types of metering: Evaluative, Center Weighted Average and Spot metering.
The last two screens allow the selection of pixel per frame. This is the area where inexperienced users should pay attention to even you select everything else in Auto Mode.
Locations for Video out and USB connections. It is good to know that both Windows XP and Vista automatically search for drivers on-line and they work once the USB cable is connected if the provided driver CD is not installed.