Digital camera buying guide – A simple check list.
If you are confused about the right features you need to look for when you buy a Camera,these simple tips can help you.
What camera features should you look for? Based on the usage and purpose the best camera for one person may not necessarily be the best digital camera for another person.The camera users can belong to different categories like Point-and-Shoot, Amateur photographers,SLR lovers or Professional photographers.
But here we are going to discuss a few things for the first time digital camera buyers.
Optical zoom vs Digital Zoom
Many first time buyers are confused between optical and digital zoom.Understanding of the difference between the two zooms will help you choose the right digital camera for you.
Optical zoom uses the optics (mean lens) of the camera to bring the subject closer (zoom).
What digital zoom does is enlarge a portion of the image.Actually digital zoom is ’simulating’ optical zoom by cropping a portion of the image and then enlarges it back to size.SO when you do a digital zooming you lose image quality.
In fact this digital zooming can be done either in camera or you can do the same when you edit the image using software.
So the point here is when you compare cameras, you should always compare optical zoom with optical zoom. There is no point in comparing digital zoom with digital zoom or optical zoom with total zoom.So if camera has more optical zoom you can zoom more without loosing image clarity.
Megapixel resolution of a digital camera
The megapixel is nothing but the number of pixels available to capture an image. The more the megapixel ,you are able to capture the image in more detail.The pixel is the smallest unit of picture which can be controlled (in computer it is the smallest addressable screen element).
With a 4 megapixel camera, you have 4 million pixels to record an image. That means if you have a 3 megapixel camera, you have 1 million less pixels to record the same image.
It all depends on your need. Determining the sizes of prints you will want to make also can help you in deciding the megapixel you need in your digital camera.
A 4 megapixel camera can produces a best print in 5×7 inches size and an average quality in 11×14 inches.In the same time an 8 megapixel camera can give you a best quality print size of 11×14 inches and an average quality of 20×30 inches.
So all depends on your choice of what is the size of photo prints you normally use.
Of course the quality of the print also depends on the photo paper you use.
The first type of battery for digital cameras conform to an established off-the-shelf form factor, most commonly AA, CR2, or CR-V3 batteries, with AAA batteries in a handful of cameras.
Almost all proprietary batteries are lithium ion. While you can recharge and use it many times but battery life begins degrading usually ofter 500 cycles.They provide considerable performance for their size.
Other type of battery is AA Nickel metal hydride batteries (NiMH) which provide an adequate amount of power and are rechargeable.NIMH batteries tend to discharge when not used.
How do you want to connect a camera to a computer? There you can look for USB ports or bluetooth or serial ports.It all depends on your computer. Normally USB connections are faster than serial connections.Some cameras use wireless connections, via Bluetooth or IEEE 802.11 WiFi, such as the Kodak EasyShare One.
Many modern cameras support the PictBridge standard, which allows them to send data directly to a PictBridge-capable computer printer without the need for a computer.Some models offers wireless connectivity here also.
Digital Camera Lenses
Point and shoot cameras with their fixed lenses are fine, if you’re looking for convenience.
But for picture quality and subject flexibility you can go for SLR (single lens reflex) camera that takes interchangeable lenses.
A standard, or normal, camera lens will suffice for general, everyday picture-taking situations such as snapshots, travel photos, individual photos etc.
A wide-angle camera lens gives you a wide angle of view, offering a larger, sweeping perspective than a standard camera lens and is good for covering large subject areas.
Opposite to the wide-angle camera lens, the telephoto camera lens is a narrow angle lens.
If you want you can go with auxiliary lenses that screw into the filter ring on the front of the lens.
Auto focus and manual focus (AF and MF)
Auto focus lenses do the focusing for you automatically. Manual focus on the other hand, allows you to manually focus the camera lens.
Normally almost all all digital cameras comes with an LCD screen to see the pictures or videos. You can look for the size of the LCD screen you want.
Many digital cameras include a video output port. It sends a standard-definition video signal to a television, allowing the user to show one picture at a time.
Here you need to check the memory capacity available with the camera and slots for externals memory sticks. If you choose high resolution images(means more megapixel) the image size will be more thus needs more space. If it uses a memory stick, make sure you consider buying additional sticks when you get your camera. Usually 8 MB memory stick that comes with a 2 megapixel camera only holds 5 or 6 images at the camera’s best quality.
Picture formats or File formats
The JPEG (Joint Photography Experts Group standard) is the most common file format for storing image data. Other file types include TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) and various Raw image formats.
The raw image format depends on the camera make and model.NEF for Nikon, CRW or CR2 for Canon, and MRW for Minolta.Adobe Systems has released the DNG format. It is a royalty free raw image format and is adopted by many camera manufacturers.
Common movie formats are AVI, DV, MPEG, MOV (often containing motion JPEG), WMV, ASF and MP4. MP4 is based on the QuickTime format and uses newer compression algorithms to allow longer recording times in the same space.
So if your camera supports recording movies and it has MP4 support means you will get more recording time.
Modes and other features.
Many digital cameras have preset modes for different applications.These days cameras come with face recognitions technologies.
Different parameters can be changed withing the the constraints of correct exposure including exposure, aperture, focusing, light metering, white balance etc.
There can be other factors also which needs to be considered while buying a digital camera. We have plenty of bands available in the market to choose from.
- Sony Digital Cameras
- Canon Compact Digital Cameras
- Canon Digital SLR Cameras
- Nikon Digital Cameras
- Kodak Digital Cameras
- Fujifilm Digital Cameras
- Minolta Digital Cameras
- Pentax Digital Cameras
- Olympus Digital Cameras
- Samsung Digital Camera
- Hewlett Packard (HP) Digital Cameras