Sentinel Onscreen Menus
What can I do with the Sentinel's onscreen menu?
Quite a lot of things!
The onscreen menus change the low-level, technical operation of the Sentinel camera.
Bringing Up The Menu
- Press C1, C2, C3, or C4 to select the camera you want to control.
- Press and hold Setup until the camera button light stays on. Release the setup button, then press and hold Setup again until the camera button stays on again.
- Press the Right arrow button to bring up the onscreen menu.
When it’s open, the onscreen menu is displayed over the picture from the camera. Use the Up and Down arrow buttons to select items from the main menu. Use the Right arrow button to select a menu item and move into its sub-menu.
- To exit the onscreen menu, press the Left arrow button until the menu disappears. Then press C1, C2, C3, or C4 as appropriate.
- To discard all changes made in the onscreen menus and restore the default settings to the camera, select the PRESET submenu, and change the PRESET option to ON.
- If you leave the onscreen menu open for a while without pressing any buttons on the remote, you will stop being able to control the menu. Follow the numbered steps above to enter the menu mode again. You can then close the menu by pressing the Left arrow button, or continue working with menu options.
Iris settings control the amount of light let into the Sentinel camera. Changing these settings affect how bright your picture will be, and how the camera reacts to changes in lighting conditions.
- PEAK: This setting controls the reaction of the automatic iris adjustment in relation to the average light level in the picture. A higher level of peak sets the camera so that the automatic light controls adjust to a higher average light level.
- ALC: Automatic Light Control determines whether the camera should adjust for light differences automatically or manually. If you set this to manual, you can set the level of lighting control that will be used.
- AES: Automatic Exposure Setting selects whether to use automatic or manual exposure settings, how long the exposure should be. This affects
how fast the camera “sees” an image – a long exposure time lets more light in and could give you a clearer picture, but it will mean that motion is harder to see.
Backlight compensation settings affect how the camera adjusts for light sources behind the camera’s view or focus. You can use this to adjust for the silhouette effect you might get when looking at things with light behind them.
- BLC: Turns Backlight Compensation On or Off. Turning BLC On will brighten the part of the picture that is being silhouetted, but will also brighten the background.
- AREA: If BLC is on, the AREA setting allows you to set the sensitivity separately for different parts of the camera’s field of view. The default setting only turns on BLC in the center of the camera’s viewing field.
- SENS: Adjusts the sensitivity of the Backlight Compensation. Low means that the camera responds less to backlit conditions, higher settings means that compensation turns on more quickly.
Automatic Gain Control & Sensitivity
The settings for Automatic Gain Control (AGC) or Starlight mode, affect the brightness and picture levels of the video produced by the camera. AGC amplifies existing video to help the camera reproduce a video signal at low light levels. Sensitivity controls adjust how the camera works in low light conditions.
- FREEZE: Freezes the picture in a still mode until you select Off, or until you move the camera with the remote control.
- AGC Levels: Selects the base level of gain control used when automatic gain control is on.
- SENS: Changing the sensitivity changes how the camera compensates for low light. The higher the setting, the more light the camera lets in when in the dark, and the better the picture that results.
The options in the color settings menu control the appearance of the video picture you get from the camera.
- ATW: Adjusts the settings for Auto Trace White Balance (ATW). ATW automatically adjusts the picture to accurately show white in response to varying light conditions. Change the setting towards R (red) or B (blue) to tell the ATW how to adjust for your specific light conditions more accurately.
- AWB: Auto White Balance works with ATW to maintain accurate levels of white in the video from the camera. Change the setting towards R (red) or B (blue) to tell the AWB how to adjust for your specific light conditions more accurately.
- R Gain and B Gain: Adjusts the saturation of red or blue in the video produced by the camera. Set these to higher levels to correct for low levels of red or blue in your picture, or vice versa.
Automatic Picture Control
Automatic Picture Control (APC) changes the geometry of the picture produced by the camera. These changes are slight and it can be hard to notice how the picture is different.
- H-GAIN: The Horizontal Gain setting adjusts the horizontal (left to right) line of the picture.
- V-GAIN: The Vertical Gain setting adjusts the vertical line of the picture.
These settings control how the lens in the Sentinel Camera behaves during normal use.
- Digital ZOOM: The camera uses digital zoom (10X) after reaching the maximum optical zoom level (22X). Digital zoom produces a slightly less clear picture than optical, and can be turned off.
- ZOOM Speed: Controls how quickly the camera zooms in.
- ZOOM Type: Choose WIDE or TELE.
- Focus Speed: Controls how quickly the camera focuses.
- Focus: Choose between Auto (automatic continuous) and Manual focus (the default setting). If using Manual Focus you can select a long focal length (INF, or infinite) to allow the camera to focus on objects any distance away, or a short focal length (NEAR) if you are using the camera only to view objects relatively close. In Manual mode the camera will set focus automatically after a zoom in or out. If you select Auto, you can use the automatic continuous setting until you zoom in or out, at which point the camera sets back to Manual.
You can set the Sentinel Camera to reverse, either horizontally, vertically the picture it produces. Or you can do both.
- H. REV: Reverses the picture horizontally, or from left to right. Set this to “ON” if you want to use the camera like a mirror for viewing objects behind you.
- V. REV: When set to “ON” this settings mirrors the picture vertically, allowing you to mount the camera upside down, as on a ceiling.
- POSI/NEGA: Lets you select a Positive or Negative image.
The Sentinel Camera does not use this feature.
Onscreen Camera Label (ID)
The Sentinel Camera can display a title or label for the camera on screen. This can be useful when you have more than one camera and want to identify them easily. Select characters from the available list to set the title you want to use.
- UP: Sets the position for display of the title to the top of the screen.
- DOWN: Sets the position for display of the title to the bottom of the screen.
If you don’t select your own title, the camera will default to displaying the camera’s address setting as the title – “CAMERA A1” for example.
Restore Presets (defaults)
The settings in the PRESET menu work to set the camera back to its default configuration. This will discard any changes you made in any of the other video settings menus.
- PRESET: When you select this option and change it to “ON,” all the settings in the camera will be changed to their defaults. The camera will reset itself, so the picture will go dark temporarily.
- INITIAL: When selected, the camera will initialize autofocus by focusing through the entire range of the lens.
- PHASE: This option is not enabled in the camera and cannot be changed.
Selecting Mark ON puts a cross-hairs mark on the screen. Bring up the onscreen menu, then use the Down arrow to select past the last item (PRESET), or the Up arrow to select past the first item (IRIS). This will display the MARK menu. Select MARK with the Right Arrow. Then select OFF or ON with the Up and Down arrows. Select with the Right Arrow, and then back out to the main menu with successive presses of the Left arrow.