Sony Zone



The wide converter is about the size of a dinner plate. Kidding. More like a dessert plate.

 DSC-F707 CyberCam Accessories

Note: SonyStyle's Accessory Page has grown. Check it out.

Wider, anyone?

The camera, as it emerges from its box, has a 5:1 zoom lens that covers a range equivalent to a 35mm camera zooming from 38mm to 190mm. Not a bad range at all. But for you who need wider, Sony has provided an astonishing wide converter.

The VCL-MHG07 (where DO they get these names?) is a 0.7X wide converter that is over 4 inches in diameter (105mm) with a forward glass element over 3 inches across. Major glass.

The rear thread is 52mm but the lens comes with a 58 -> 52mm step down ring.

To shoot with it, the camera needs to be in wide zoom and Macro Focus. A small amount of zoom is available for tight framing purposes, but not a lot. No, you can't just zoom through the whole range and stay in focus.

About $130 list. Typical: $100.

New Converters

Sony has introduced two new converters, one for wider shots, the other for longer tele views. They're not cheap at $279 and $299 respectively and we will review them as soon as we can. Look for the VCL-HGD0758 wide and VCL-HG1758 tele optics.

Case the Joint

Two camera cases are made by Sony that are for this camera. The LCS-VA3 camera bag and the LCS-FX form-fitting leather overcoat. The bag holds camera, WA lens, Sony Flash, Sony Remote, extra batteries, extra memory sticks, and a handful of miscellaneous accessories like cleaning supplies. It's not big, but it's a nice bag.

The bag is $40 and the leather coat (camera pouch, actually) is $100. A new model pouch, the LCJ-FHA is only $60 and may replace the prior pouch.

An aluminum boxy hard case has recently been introduced for $229. Check the SonyStyle Digital camera Accessories page.


The chewing gum that remembers what things looked like. That's the impression Memory Sticks create.

Sony has recently reduced prices of these. So has SanDisk and Lexar with their compatible versions.

Sony 128meg cards are now $67 (Oct. '02) and I've seen the Lexar ones of the same capacity recently for less.

Flash and dazzle

There is an accessory shoe atop the DSC-F707 camera. But it is NOT a hot shoe. (Unless you are working with the DSC-F717.)

Sony's own HVL-F1000 external flash unit plugs into an "Accessory" socket near the shoe with a proprietary plug.

Now bounce flash images are possible.

The external flash cuts off the internal flash (it won't pop open) and the pulse of light is not in two flashes, the way it is with the camera flash.

Now you can trigger slave units without any hassles.

About $130 list on the Sony Style site. I think they are the only source, but check your local digital camera store first.

Power Play

Without sufficient power, you can no longer play. So at least one extra M-type InfoLithium battery is in your future.

About $60.

Third party battery suppliers are beginning to join in. Lenmar's DLSM50 is a little cheaper.

Micro Pod

Sony makes a tiny tripod-table-like device, but an $8 Q-Pod will do you more good. It simply lives under the lens, feet folded forward, most of its life.

Then it becomes the perfect table-top tripod with feet extending on demand. I wouldn't leave home without it.

IR Filters

In order to shoot out of doors in direct sun with the NightShot mode that sees in total darkness, you will need an ND8 (A.K.A. 0.9 on the Tiffen Scale) and a stern IR filter.

The 88A filter is okay, but if you can find the darker, more deeply infrared 87, 87B or 87C, that would be better. is worth checking. They have a special stack of filters (at my request) made up for the 707/717s. Two ND and an IR filter in a package for about $60. When they are in stock.

It will cost you about $80 to do right with ND and IR filters from most other sources.

Remote chance

The Accessory socket also allows you to plug in the RMDR-1 remote control, a wired zoom and shutter trigger that controls the camera without touching it.

Shooting time-lapse? This would be your needed accessory.

You will have to time yourself manually, since the remote has no internal timer.

It nicely mirrors the two-speed zoom control and half-press / full-press of the shutter button.

It's only other function is to power the camera on & off.

Now you can stand out from behind the camera the way Matthew Brady did during the Civil War shouting at the generals to say 'cheese' and hold it for 20 seconds.

Of course, your camera takes the shot in just 1/125 sec, but you don't have to tell the generals that.

The only place I know that has it consistently is Sony Style's DSC-F707/717 Accessory page. Perhaps your camera store will special order it for you.

A Must Have accessory. $50.

Tele Tubby?

Sony does not make a tele converter, but you may wish to see what an Olympus T-14 converter does for you. It's only 1.45X, but that gives you the equivalent of a 275mm lens.

About $150. on eBay. $190 list.

On the DSC-F717 box are two illustrations of wide and tele converter lenses. Neither of these are officially out as of 9-22-02, but they may appear soon. Both are chrome-barreled and have designation numbers that match to two black-barreled converter lenses made for upper-quality DV recorders. Those cost $400 each. Can these be a version with the quality needed by the 707/717? Stay tuned.

More will be here as the REVIEW Of Accessories is added to. Check back soon.


PS: As experience grows with this camera, so will this review and the Sony eBook. Coming soon to a website near here. Check the Order Page.

© 2002 Peter iNova. All rights reserved.