How To Use the LCD Screen on a Digital Camcorder

In 1992, Sharp Electronics was the first company to introduce LCD screen on camcorders. Prior to this the only way to see the image you were recording was through the eye piece of the view finder. This would cause a lot of camcorder operators to trip due to not being able to see where they were walking. Another benefit to the LCD screen is that it's larger than the view finder, allowing you to see more detail in your images. Using the LCD screen on your digital camera is easy.

Turn the Camera On

The first step in using your camera's LCD screen is to turn the power on. Your camcorder's power is usually controlled by a switch.

Flip the Screen out

Your LCD screen is a fragile piece of equipment. Gently flip it out because if you forcibly remove it, it can and will break. If there is no image appearing on the screen gently close it and open it again. If you are still not seeing an image check to see if the lens cap is still on the camera.

Frame and White Balance

The LCD is small, but it is larger than the view finder so you can see more details in the image. Once your camera is up and running with an image, the next step is to find a frame. Once your frame is set you should white balance the camcorder so your colors remain rich and true.

If you're shooting a scene for a movie then you should have your actors step into set and block out their actions in a rehearsal that you will watch on the LCD screen. Once you guys have worked out the blocking for the scene it's time to start lighting. You can use the LCD screen to monitor your lighting to make sure everything is evenly exposed. Once the shot is lit you can shoot.


Although every camcorder is different, most have a button dedicated for just recording. Hit the button and you're rolling. After the scene is shot you can watch the play back on the LCD to make sure it was captured correctly.

LCD Touch Screens

Some camcorders now have a touch screen on the LCD that the user can use to control the menu. You also use the touch screen to navigate your clips and execute play back. When using these it is important to have clean hands as dirty ones will make your screen dirty. Also, be careful to tap and not press down on the screen as that can cause it to break.

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