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AT-How to use a Document Camera

Document cameras are available in all classrooms in the school of business. Each document camera is connected to the overhead projector in the classroom. Document cameras replace the function of old overhead projectors and also introduce new features. They can display a multitude of items, including paper documents, newspapers, transparent overhead projector slides, and electronic tablets in occasions when high quality projection is not needed.

Short video on using the document camera in Grainger Hall classrooms.


  • To use the document camera, first check that you are logged into the AMX panel on the podium. If you are not logged in and do not know the passcode, please contact Event Services at the information desk near Park-University Entrance.
  • In some rooms, the document camera is beside the podium; in others, you will need to pull the document camera out of the podium. It will be located in a compartment on the right of the podium.
  • Raise the document camera up by the pull handle located on the right of the document camera. Raising it by pulling on the head of the document camera may damage the unit.
  • Click the power button, located at the top document camera’s writing board.

  • In the main menu of the panel, on the “input select” header, you will see an icon titled “document camera.” Click this icon to set the projector to the document camera. Lower the projection screen using the appropriate wall switch.

  • The document camera should now be displaying on the overhead screen. Place an item underneath the document camera and adjust it as needed so the text is visible on the overhead screen.

The document camera also offers more advanced features. 

  • You can adjust the luminosity of the document by clicking the light/white button on and off. This is located above the document camera’s writing board. 
  • On the camera head, there even more options. The zoom scroller enables a user to magnify a portion of the page by moving the scroller downward,  or, by moving it upwards, to see the entire document.

Below the zoom scroller, the “Man” (standing for “manual”) buttons allow a user to adjust the camera’s focus on the document manually. This is not recommended for beginning users.


The “Auto” light should be lit upon powering up the document camera. Most of the time, auto focus is extremely helpful. However, there are some instances where it may be best to turn it off.

  • If you plan to be doing a fair amount of writing and don’t want the camera occasionally focusing on your hand, place the paper or transparent slide on the surface of the document camera writing board. Allow the camera to auto focus on the paper, then press the button to the left of the auto light indicator to turn autofocus off. If you change documents, turn the auto focus on again to let the camera adjust.
  • Turning off the auto-focus can also be useful if you are planning to show a video from a portable tablet. Sometimes the document camera’s autofocus can be confused by quickly moving objects. As with the previous example, place the tablet beneath the document camera and allow it to autofocus, then turn off autofocus. When you need to switch devices or documents, turn autofocus on again.

  • The freeze function on the head of the document camera allows a user to display a picture of the object under the camera outside of real-time. In short, the document camera “Freezes” the image on the screen, allowing the user to move or remove the document from the writing board of the document camera while still displaying the image on the screen.

  • Pressing and holding the freeze button enters the document camera into a preset mode, which is not recommended for beginning users. If you accidently enter the preset mode, simply use the zoom scroller to return to your normal document viewing position.


The “extern” button allows a user to connect their external device, such as a computer, to the document camera instead of connecting it to the podium. This is not recommended for beginning users.





Keywords:document camera use   Doc ID:31922
Owner:Billy K.Group:Wisconsin School of Business
Created:2013-07-29 17:00 CDTUpdated:2018-10-09 15:15 CDT
Sites:Wisconsin School of Business
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