Home : Video : Camera Work : How Set up Your Camera's Viewfinder

Video Camera Viewfinder

This page deals with black and white electronic viewfinders (EVFs), although colour viewfinders work in basically the same way.

This viewfinder has a number of adjustment options.

Different cameras have various options for adjusting the EVF. Consumer camcorders are usually limited to making focus/sharpness adjustments, whereas professional cameras have numerous options. Work through the following procedures, ignoring the functions which aren't available on your camera.

Some notes on electronic viewfinders:

To set the brightness and contrast:

  1. Switch the camera to colour bars.
  2. Adjust the viewfinder brightness and contrast until you see a smooth greyscale from peak white to black. You should be able to see a dividing line between each bar.
  3. Switch the camera to picture.
  4. Check your exposure on a reliable monitor, either by connecting a cable from the camera output or by doing a test record.

To set the focus/sharpness (diopter adjustment):

The "diopter" is the EVF's eyepiece lens. Adjust this to make the viewfinder image as sharp as possible. This adjustment is usually made either with a ring on the EVF or a sliding button.

  1. Choose a subject with plenty of contrast - this makes focus easier.
  2. Zoom out wide and focus the camera lens normally.
  3. Adjust the diopter until you see the clearest image. If necessary, secure the diopter.

See also: Zebra stripes