Digital cameras provide a wide array of image-capturing options for every level of photographer. A digital camera can help you reach your photographic goals -- whether you hope to document your personal life or start a professional photographic career. Understanding your needs and photographic desires is necessary before you begin your journey into choosing the proper digital camera.
Point and Shoot Cameras
Besides a cell phone camera, the most basic of digital cameras is the point and shoot, or compact, camera. Point and shoot digital cameras provide a very basic image-capturing device for the everyday consumer. A vast array of digital point and shoot cameras are on the market, spanning the range of bare-bones essential elements for capturing an image to high-definition video components incorporated in the camera functions. The sensors that function as the "film" in a digital point and shoot are smaller in size than higher-end cameras, with less dynamic range and a poorer image quality. These cameras also have a limited range of manual functions, making them less ideal for someone looking to control various aspects of the camera for creative purposes.
Micro Four-Thirds Cameras
A micro four-thirds camera bridges the gap between the digital point and shoot and the DSLR, or Digital Single Lens Reflex camera. A micro four-thirds uses a larger sensor than the point and shoot and provides more manual and creative control over the camera functions. The camera technology is a smaller version of the standard four-thirds camera, which is similar to the SLR or Single Lens Reflex, but with a different lens mount and sensor size. The smaller size and interchangeable lenses make this camera ideal for professionals looking for a recreational camera. The micro four-thirds is usually larger in size than the point and shoot, but not as heavy and bulky as the DSLR camera many professional and amateur photographers use.
A DSLR camera uses an internal mirror to reflect the image through the lens onto the sensor to record a digital image. The camera uses interchangeable lenses that attach to the body and offer a huge selection of focal lengths. A DSLR gives the photographer total control over the camera settings. This camera is recommended for any person wishing to pursue a career as a professional photographer or a hobbyist wishing to expand their photographic knowledge.
The HDSLR forms a bridge between the DSLR and a high-definition video camera. The frame rate, wide-screen recording ratio and lens quality allows the HDSLR to produce footage at a fraction of the cost of cinematic equipment, but with a comparable image quality. There are many work-flow and computer technicalities to consider when shooting video.
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