Sony Camera Operation

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Sony Camera Configuration

You can capture stunning time-lapse sequences using a Sony camera with your photoSentinel P3 controller. Photos captured with Sony cameras are handled differently than other camera brands. Most notably, images are not saved to the Sony cameras SD card, but rather saved to the external drive of the photoSentinel. This article explains these differences and outlines recommended settings to get your Sony camera working properly.

Required Camera Settings

Sony cameras require specific camera settings before they will operate with photoSentinel. Put the photoSentinel P3 controller into setup mode via the switch on the front panel and wait for the camera to come on. Then navigate to the menu on the camera to adjust the settings.

Sony ZV-E10

MENU -> Network1 -> PC Remote Function:  

  • Turn ‘PC Remote’ on.  
  • Set ‘PC Remote Cnct Method’ to ‘USB’.  
Sony a7R IVA

MENU -> Network1 -> PC Remote Function:  

  • Turn ‘PC Remote’ on.  
  • Set ‘PC Remote Cnct Method’ to ‘USB’.  
  • On Screen 2, set ‘Still Img. Save Dest’ PC Only 

Once set, turn the camera’s power switch to the off position. Wait approximately 5 seconds then switch the camera back on to ensure the settings were saved.

External Drive

An external drive is required to handle photos captured with Sony cameras. Ensure that an external drive is connected and has plenty of free space to avoid missing photos. Images are saved directly to the external drive with Sony cameras. New images won’t be saved if the external drive is full. 

If you are only taking JPEG images, we recommend configuring your photoSentinel controller to delete old photos from the external drive when its free space drops below 2%. You can enable this option from the ‘Photo File Handling’ section of your installation’s ‘Config’ page.  This setting may not be suitable for handling RAW images. Please see this article on photo file handling for more information. 

The photoSentinel unit will report errors if the external drive is missing or full. These errors will trigger an alert to notify you of issues with your external drive. Please see the following articles for more information: 

SD Card

P3 controllers do not use an SD card to capture photos from Sony cameras. Sony images are handled using the external storage drive. We recommend that you do not use an SD card in your Sony camera, since the camera will be unable to take photos if the SD card is full or corrupt.  

Note: If no SD card is inserted in your Sony camera, the camera LCD will display ‘NO CARD’. This is perfectly fine and will not affect the performance of your installation.

Time and Date

Unlike the Canon and Nikon models, Sony cameras don't allow for the adjustment of date, time and time zone remotely. Therefore, it is critical to configure the correct time and date, along with the time zone, for the location that the camera will be capturing photos for.

Once the desired settings have been configured, turn the camera’s power switch to the off position. Wait approximately 5 seconds then switch the camera back on to ensure the settings were saved.

Other Notes

  • Low power mode is not available with Sony cameras. Enabling low power mode on a controller with a Sony camera will result in error 278: “This camera does not support LPT”. 
  • We cannot remotely format the SD card in a Sony camera. The controller’s OLED display will say ‘Deleting all SD photo’ but nothing will happen.

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