11 May 2010

The Author

Andy Lim got started in photography after leaving design college, and has given several public talks on the subject of photography. SimpleSLR Workshops Photography workshops from beginners to advanced levels. SimpleSLR Guides Author of best-selling e-book series. Photography Tips Author of useful and practical tips on GoodPhotography.info website. Emotion in Pictures Accomplished professional wedding photographer. His brand attracts clients worldwide with his unique flavor of wedding and portrait photography.

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Optical vs Digital Zoom

On consumer digital cameras, the terms optical zoom and digital zoom are common. When shopping for a digital camera, ignore the digital zoom. What you should look for is the optical zoom capability, because what is captured using optical zoom is what the lens actually sees.
Digital zoom is basically using in-camera software to enlarge the center pixels in the photo, resulting in loss of detail and sharpness.

Some digital cameras use digital zoom exclusively, because they lack an optical zoom lens. On such cameras, the photo will be at its sharpest without using the digital zoom at all.

Other digital cameras have a combination of optical and digital zoom. On such cameras, I would turn off digital zoom entirely, and use only the optical zoom. This will ensure that I get sharp photos all the time.

x 1 x 2 x 3
Optical
Zoom
zoomx1 35mm Optical vs Digital Zoom zoomx2 70mm Optical vs Digital Zoom zoomx3 105mm Optical vs Digital Zoom
Usually equivalent to a 35mm lens. Details in the photo are captured by the lens. Usually equivalent to a 70mm lens. Details in the photo are captured by the lens. Usually equivalent to a 105mm lens. Details in the photo are captured by the lens.
Digital
Zoom
zoomx1 35mm Optical vs Digital Zoom zoomx2 digital Optical vs Digital Zoom zoomx3 digital Optical vs Digital Zoom
Usually equivalent to a 35mm lens. Details in the photo are captured by the lens. Camera adds pixels to make the photo larger. Details in the photo are artifically added via software in the camera. Camera adds pixels to make the photo larger. Details in the
photo are artifically addedvia software in the camera.


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