Ultimate Guide for Buying Digital SLR (DSLR)

What is DSLR camera?

There are wide ranges of Digital single-lens reflex camera or DSLR available in the market that offers a wide variety of models. They are designed carefully for beginners and also for professionals too. The DSLR is carefully designed with interchangeable lens which offers high quality picture images and more versatility as well.

The DSLRs are more complex than any other normal traditional standard point and shoot cameras. The DSLR has finely tuned adjustments and many other settings. The size of the sensor is high than other digital cameras which offers high quality images. Following are the few features that you can enjoy if you are buying the digital SLR camera.

Advantages of using a DSLR camera

  • Versatility
    The types and appearance of the photos greatly depends on the point and shoot camera is always limited in the point and shoot camera. But in the DSLR there are wide options provided with the availability of interchangeable lens. Therefore the DSLR allows the person to take image even while the object is far away with the available zoom lens without losing the quality.

    The macro lens in the DSLR camera allows it to zoom and see more of the image with the macro lens. Yes, DSLR are not the only digital camera with the interchangeable lens options but it sure allows more options with wide range of lens. If you want to create an artistic effect to your picture then you should buy another perfect lens which might be little expensive but the effects it brings to the picture quality is priceless.

    Few external expansions can also be added to the DSLR camera such as the audio adapters and external flashes for the video quality.

  • Quality of the picture
    The most important benefit that a DSLR offers for its users is extreme quality. The DSLRs offers a high resolution images with its large sensor images. The image sensor allows the camera to take pictures and convert them into a digital format image with high quality. According to the size of the display the sensor type also varies.

    The sensor image with large capacity and huge megapixels will allow taking better images with high resolution. The megapixel is the one million points or pixels that are present in the picture. More the megapixels present in the image more will the quality of the image.

  • High performance
    The greatest advantage that a DSLR camera offers is the speed performance. The performance is very fast in order to meet the needs and demands of the person using it. DSLR will autofocus quicker and at a faster speed than any other ordinary point to point camera. Since the DSLR has more memory capacity the images can be captured immediately with perfect skills.

    Though it is expensive the camera is designed in such a way that your camera would process the information faster from the sensor.

  • Supports manual
    DSLR is fully loaded with automatic settings but like the ordinary point and shoot camera this awesome camera also allows the user to manually change the settings according to their preferences. Therefore the person using the mobile would feel more comfortable while taking photos with much more control. For example while the user is capturing motion picture and the image is little blurred then you can change the shutter speed to remove the blur.

    In DSLR there are wide options available for focusing, shutter speeds and aperture for getting the quality images.

What is the sensor size in your DSLR?

There are wide ranges of digital cameras available in today’s gadget world but when you carefully observe they would not possess the required amount of sensor size to produce the perfect quality image in order to produce professional pictures. As we all know the sensor is actually the device that is in the digital camera which is like the photoelectric cell.

The chief functions of these sensors are to respond and receive stimulus or energy signals, such as the color, light, heat and motion. Other signals that the sensor responds to are the electrical. There is an analog which converts these signals with the digital converter such as the computer and a display screen. This helps the value that has been sensed by the sensor to be translated and converted for the human brain to understand the output.

  • Size of the sensor

    The sensor in the DSLR can be in different sizes such as large which might be very expensive, mid-size which are little expensive and at last the small sensors which would be economical and cheaper. The capacity present in the sensor indicates the ability to capture more accurate pictures and information. This would result in the images with higher resolution.

    If you are in search for a professional level digital SLR then you need to opt for digital cameras with large sensor size. Even if you have the ordinary point-in-shoot camera with huge number of megapixels it does not give the required professional artistic effect to your picture. The sensors present in certain cameras would take pictures of size that would be ranging up to 23.7mm by 15.7mm or APS-C negative and A 35mm film frame is 36mm by 24mm.

    Thus while purchasing a camera check for the sensor size though it has large mega pixel.

  • Compare and find the miracle of sharp images
    Larger the sensor size more technically good with high quality will the images be while comparing the medium format film with the 36mm slides. Just as in printing the negative, larger are the size of the sensor you will be provided more options for resizing, cropping and much more. The technical quality of the image also increases with the size of the sensor. You might be wondering why this sensor size matters.

    The sensor size makes a big difference in many procedures such as in enhancing, enlarging and many other manipulations. It increases the quality of the picture in wide range. If you are a normal stock photographer should purchase is the DSLR with sensor of APS-C negative (23.7mm by 15.7mm). Yes, while you are purchasing the Digital SLR next time before checking for mega pixels you need to see the size of the sensor first.

    Thus sensors are more important than mega pixels for capturing quality image pictures.

Other considerations

The photography world is easy to be understood if you understand the other basic features such as following.

  • Megapixels
    Whenever the term photography is used it comes along with the mention of megapixels. The SLR is a digital camera is a camera that allows you to take pictures with high quality. But it is essential for you to understand the term of megapixel. The pixel is the small little dot that makes the very small piece of the image picture. When all of them are combined together they form the perfect complete picture.

    Megapixel is the resolution or total pixel of a screen, an image sensor or a picture. This happens by multiplying and calculating vertical pixels by number of horizontal pixels. This is the way the megapixel is calculated- for example in the case of 3 megapixel camera consists of 2,048 horizontal and 1,536 vertical pixels. When you multiply them you would be getting 3,145,728 pixels which would be rounded up to 3 megapixels.

    These days while people are advertising for cameras they usually boast of higher megapixels for increasing the quality of the images. Though this factor is true to an extent it is not the completely true. The high mega pixels will produce pictures with higher resolution. This in no way improves the quality of the picture taken it just increases the size of the picture and not the quality.

    This is because the high resolution of the megapixels has no effects on the image quality. The more the megapixels of a camera, huger is the size of the pictures that you will be able to print out. More than 6 mega pixels would allow you to print photos up to the normal size and cameras with 21 megapixels is used to print out bigger images that covers even a side of the huge bus.

    Thus you need to understand that more megapixels do not make the camera much better. There are so many other factors such as the sensor size, shutter speed etc. which you need to concentrate on while buying the SLR digital camera for better performance.

  • The ISO Level
    The ISO level of the SLR digital camera allows you to capture a picture image with slow or quicker shutter speed. When you bump the ISO it will mean that the shutter speed will be quicker and if you lower the ISO level then it will results in slow shutter speed. The basic reason why you should have higher raised ISO level is because it increases the shutter speed and thus avoids blurred images by avoiding the shaking of images.

    But raising the shutter speed causes another defect which is reduction in the quality of the images during unfavorable conditions. This might also cause a grain like effect which might appear on the images. The basic level cameras will perform with ISO level that ranges from 100 to 1600, and in some cases it also goes up to 3200. A DSLR camera with raised ISO levels usually performs reasonably better than that which has lower ISO.

  • Frames per second
    This might not be the important factor but it sure is equally important to shoot fast action shots while purchasing your digital SLR camera. The cameras at the entry levels would take roughly 3 frames in one second and high end DSLR cameras are designed and equipped to take 8 frames in one second. More the frames more easy it would be to capture the picture at high speed with better quality.

    This might be very important when you want to capture sports or events.

  • Image types in your DSLR camera
    Mostly the compact digital cameras allow you to shoot and capture pictures with only one image type which is the JPG. But the DSLR cameras offer to its users two or more options which include RAW, TIFF and JPEG. The file format is the basic factor that influences the quality of the image which also depends on the memory or camera storage capacity available.

Image types in your DSLR camera

1. JPEG
The term JPEG and JPG acronyms are the form of photography that are used interchangeably and is formed by the international committee of the Joint Photographic Experts Group. The JPEG format is the default setting that exists in most of the DSLR cameras. They deliver a compressed version of the picture captured.

While it is compressing the image the camera might remove important information from the picture which might have created a considerable difference in the quality of the printed photo image. Thus you can easily choose between higher and less quality by adjusting the level of compression. Thus an ordinary 4 megapixels DSLR camera is capable of producing excellent quality images up to 8 x 10 prints.

While you want to print for sending through email then settings for low quality is best. One disadvantage of JPEG images are that the effects with which you had shot an image. You are allowed to edit the JPEG images but you can just make few corrections to the picture that is taken wrong. And during the process of editing there are chances of image degrading.

2. RAW
The most exclusive format in the DSLR cameras is the RAW format. However processing of RAW images is not done by the camera therefore it creates it equivalent to digital form of film negative. The processing procedure is left to be done by you according to your desires with the use of the photo editing software.

The DSLR contains manual settings with which you are capable of taking creative images, but the RAW format helps you to be more creative. The RAW format produces pictures with more bits that the normal 8 bit JPEG. Another advantage is that you can alter the image by adding brightness of shadows and highlights more perfectly than the JPEG file format.

The camera which has this lossless format also does not compress the photos therefore the images uses more space and also might take a little longer for capturing the image. But the disadvantage of RAW is that it needs to be converted in to JPEG or TIFF in order to print or email with the proprietary software. You can also increase the memory storage capacity for storing the images both in JPEG and RAW.

It is your choice to be made whether to select JPEG or RAW according to your needs.

3. TIFF
TIFF or the Tagged Image Format can be used in the multiple platforms because it is a standard image format. Bu the files are too bigger in TIFF format. The entire range of DSLR cameras does not contain TIFF. Though this format surely offers high quality picture than JPEG the files which are stored are usually very higher than the JPEGs therefore finding space is difficult.

The Digital SLR (Single Lens Reflex) cameras is the best choice that serious amateur and professional photographers. There are wide ranges of lenses and cameras are available in the DSLR world. They offer rich collections of lenses which are more versatile than normal cameras. The optical quality of the Digital SLR camera is very much higher than the normal point and shoot camera because of its quality.

There are wide ranges of options available from which you can select a DSLR camera within your budget. You need to understand first the basic needs of yourself and the purpose of your shooting. If it is just for fun than ordinary DSLR is more than enough but if you are thirsting for that artistic professional touch in your pictures then you can choose the best DSLR camera which satisfies all your needs.

Following are the basic things that you need to concentrate while planning to purchase the best DSLR camera.

Compare between camera sensors

Most of the DSLR cameras such as the EOS 1D Mark IV and Canon EOS 5D MK II are built with up to 35mm film frame of full frame sensors. Therefore it produces high quality pictures which perform excellently even in dim surrounding lights. The Full Frame Sensors are usually built with high end camera bodies.

Compare the camera resolution

The most popular DSLR cameras are in wide varieties that range from 10.2 megapixels to 18.0 megapixels. But you need to be careful not to fully depend on the number of megapixels for deciding the camera’s worth. The more megapixels offer high resolution which is large in size. Mostly professional photographers use only 6 to 8 megapixels. But those who are in to fashion world and in the advertisement industries they use more megapixels, because they need to print out large image photos for billboards and editorial spreads as well.

Understand the LCD monitor

The LCD monitor need to be large enough for you to read all the controls, use playback feature and histogram in a very easy manner. most of the DSLR cameras display screen consists of backlit light which has anti glare coating for making things clear even on ambient light glare or night and allows to read all the important information.

Compare the size between the DSLR cameras

Few cameras are heavy and are made from strong metals such as magnesium alloy. The Nikon D60 and Canon EOS Rebel T2i are pretty compact and are lighter than the other solid and bulky cameras. Therefore you should carefully analyze between cameras before purchasing. You can lift up the cameras and check if it is causing any amount of stress or fatigue to your wrist while you are carrying for longer period of time.

In case you feel it too heavy then there are other options of lighter cameras with all the essential features.

The frame rate of the cameras needs to be compared

It is an essential feature that should be compared in order to capture continuous images the objects in motion and fast speed. Therefore compare the frame rates and check if the camera consists of high frame rate per second and choose according to your needs.

Educate yourself about the different modes of the DSLR camera

Once you have decided to buy one DSLR camera the first thing you need to concentrate is the different modes of the camera. The advanced technological DSLR cameras consist of various manual modes for taking pictures in different situations, which are used by customer user and advanced users modes. Once you update yourself with all the terms and using the modes such as the JPEG, RAW etc.

If you are buying the High end cameras it is important that you educate yourself about both these modes.

Lens factor

Another important factor that you would need to concentrate while purchasing a DSLR camera is the lens. If you are a professional photographer there are wide ranges of angle lens available for your DSLR camera. This will help you to capture the important events and functions with group shots. The lens can be mixed and matched to create artistic view and fun.

There are various quality lenses available in the market and you can choose the best that suits your needs. Each one of these lens are carefully tailored and designed for performing certain tasks. Some of the tasks are specific or general. Before buying the lens take pictures in different lighting conditions and aperture settings.

Read reviews of these cameras while you have decided to purchase one. There are websites which offers comparison and more information regarding various DSLR cameras. You can read their special features and reviews. These invaluable information guides you in making proper decision regarding the purchase of DSLR cameras.

Good luck!

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