Digital Photography Basics -Comparing Digital Compacts to DSLRs

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The basics of digital photography are pretty much the same whether you're using a digital compact or DSLR (also referred to simply as an SLR), but there are a few important differences.

Digital Compacts

One of the biggest advantages to digital compacts is the cost. Also when you purchase a DSLR you will also need to purchase at least one lens, and if you want to take pictures from afar, you'll also need a good telephoto lens. Digital compacts come with a built in lens and often a zoom.

If you have an optical zoom on your digital compact, you can get some good quality telephoto shots too. An optical zoom is always far better than a digital zoom because a digital zoom works like cropping - it takes away pixels. The more you zoom with a digital zoom the lower the image quality. On the other hand, an optical zoom maintains the quality of your photo.

Some compacts produce such high quality photographs that many a pro will grab the compact if they dont' want to carry all their DSLR gear. The quality of the photograph is largely dependent upon the photographer's skill.

Even though digital compacts don't have as many megapixels as DSLRs, they can still produce a good 8x10 print even if they just have 5 megapixels.

Finally, learning the digital photography basics of a compact is far easier then learning how to use a DSLR to its full advantage.

Digital Single Lens Reflexes (DSLRs)

A Digital SLR is the digital version of a single lens reflex camera or SLR. You can call a DSLR a single lens reflex camera but you can't call an SLR a digital camera. With the release of cameras like the Canon Rebel and other moderately priced DSLRs, more photography enthusiasts are enjoying the benefits of using a DSLR.

The big advantage of the DSLR is its creativity and versatility.

For example, by adding a long telephoto lenses, you can capture a close up of an osprey at the top of a towering pine tree or a child at the soccer goal post when you're at the other end of the field. With a DSLR, you can find all kinds of accessories to suit almost any photographer's need.

Another advantage to the DSLR is its ability to take crisp, focused sports and other action shots in places with low light where flash isn't allowed. The larger sensor on a DSLR allows you to adjust the ISO and get a good picture, whereas with a compact it usually creates an image with a lot of grain called digital noise. If you are taking still photos, it's not a problem. The problem with Sports mode in a low light setting is that the shutter must close so fast that in spite of a larger aperture setting, there's just not enough light hitting the image sensor. The only way this can be overcome is with a flash or a higher ISO setting.

However, there are software programs that once learned can often can work wonders in eliminating digital noise created with compacts in these settings.

Another DSLR advantage is that you can use an external flash which can make a huge difference.

DSLRs have more megapixels than the best of the digital compacts, meaning you can take and print in high quality really big pictures, like posters and large prints for framing. And lastly, digital cameras are slower to take pictures than film cameras but DSLRs are much faster than digital compacts.

Although the digital photography basics do start with selecting a camera, the quality of your images will largely depend upon how you use your camera. So no matter what type of camera you have or will be buying, it pays to practice.

Autumn Lockwood loves taking pictures and is a writer for Your Picture Frames. Your Picture Frames offers a large selection of quality picture frames in a variety of finishes, colors, styles and sizes. If you're looking for antique oval picture frames or unique round picture frames give us a call or visit us at => YourPictureFrames.com

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