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Konica Minolta Dynax Maxxum 7D

At long last, Minolta SLR owners have a *very* worthy body to use with their lens collections!

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Page 4:Viewfinder

Review First Posted: 11/27/2004, Updated: 02/01/2005


The 7D features a digital SLR design, so the optical viewfinder offers a true, through-the-lens (TTL) display. A dioptric adjustment dial accommodates eyeglass wearers, letting them adjust the viewfinder optics across a range of -3.0 - 1.0 diopters. (For reference, the nearsighted end of this range just barely accommodated my own 20/180 vision.) The viewfinder eyepiece has a reasonably high eyepoint, but I still ended up with the rubber eyecup touching my eyeglasses if I wanted to see the whole frame. (Overall, a passing grade in eyeglass-friendliness, but not the best I've seen.)

The viewfinder has an extensive information display, and features a series of focus and exposure target marks in the center of the view that highlight briefly when the AF system is activated. Camera information appears beneath the image area in a small strip, and reports all of the major camera settings, such as shutter speed, aperture, flash mode, EV compensation, etc. Lining the right side of the image area is the Anti-Shake scale, indicating the degree of stabilization whenever Anti-Shake mode is activated. The information readout in the viewfinder activates whenever you half-press the Shutter button, and remains active for a few seconds afterward.

Inset behind a pair of vertical windows on the right side of the viewfinder, a set of infrared sensors detects your eye as it approaches the viewfinder, and deactivates the LCD information display if you have the auto-display option enabled. A Diopter Control dial adjusts the viewfinder to accommodate eyeglass wearers.

The rear-panel, 2.5-inch, TFT color LCD monitor is for image review, status display, and menu display. In any capture mode, pressing the Display button on the rear panel reports camera settings in the LCD display. You can choose between full or basic display modes, which essentially control how detailed the camera information is. A third press of the Display button disables the information readout entirely. By default the LCD reports the full status information screen whenever the camera is powered on or a control is activated. As mentioned above, the Auto Display option of the Custom menu disables the LCD display whenever your eye is detected by the sensors beneath the optical viewfinder. If this function is set to Manual, you must press the Display button to disable the display.

In Playback mode, the LCD monitor's default mode shows the most recently captured image, with a limited information overlay reporting the resolution and quality, date and time, folder, file number, frame number, and the total number of images. Pressing the up arrow key on the Multi-controller enables a histogram display, which also shows expanded exposure information for the image. Just above the histogram is what Konica Minolta calls the Luminance Limit display, which alternately flashes any under and over-exposed areas in the frame. (This function can sometimes be more helpful than the histogram, in that you can directly see what parts of the image are too dark or light.) Pressing the down arrow in this mode also rotates the display, first counter-clockwise, then clockwise, then back to normal.

You can zoom in on captured images in Playback mode, by pressing the button with the magnifying-glass icon adjacent to the left side of the LCD screen. When zoomed in, the rear control dial changes the zoom amount, and pressing the center button of the multi-controller toggles between the magnified view and a full-frame view with the current magnified area outlined in red.


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