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Digital Camera

Hi Fellas

Could you guys recommend any good book on using digital cameras? something that explains basica photography with digital imaging focus.

Thanks

photography newbie
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Do you need a book?  There are tons of links and webpages that describe well beyond the basics.  My only tip is that 2 megapixels is more than sufficient for printing up to 8x10 photos (so even overkill for 4x6 or 3x5) 

All the rest is pure marketing hype to take your money.  Just like all those bullshit programming languages of the week back during the bubble.  Don't fall for it. 

Bella
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Ironically, people pay all this money to buy major megapixles, and are left with nothing but 5MB pictures that are impossible to email anyone.  Most digital pix arent even printed, but viewed online, where most monitors don't even have the detail to properly display a 1 megapixel picture. 

They end up having to crop and resample with a thumbnail type app (ie: reduce all those pixels they paid $600 for!!)   

Classic.

Bella
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Have a look at http://www.dpreview.net/

sgf
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

http://www.photo.net/

try that site.

like bella's says 2 mega pixel cameras are good enough. buy an extra CF card though.

Prakash S
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Thanks guys, i really appreciate your responses and insights.

Unfortunately i fell for that and bought 3.4 mega pixel from Sony. I am glad that I didn't buy that Ford Explorer 2002 a while ago ;-)

photography newbie
Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Before you decide that anything over 3 MP is a waste of money, you need to know what the camera is going to be used for.  3 MP is fine for snapshots and will do an OK 8x10 (if you are not too demanding).  If however, you are a serious photographer or need large prints (16x20, 20x30) you need a more MP.

I have a small photography business in addition to my day job and am looking at moving from film to digital to save costs (I shoot $250 in film/developing per job) and am considering the Fuji S2 12 MP (OK, it is a 6 MP 'SuperCCD' in a honeycomb pattern that interpolates to 12 MP).

Anyway, yes for snapshots 3 MP is plenty.  If you are more demanding, I'd look at the 5 MP cameras with the built in zoom lenses like the Minolta Dimage 7/7i/7Hi.

Eric Budd
Thursday, October 31, 2002

Basic photography is basic photography. The rules of composition and lighting don't change when you move to a digital camera.

For the life of me, I can't think of the author's name, but there are several good introduction to photography books out there. Again, the fact that you are using a digital camera really makes little difference in learning the basics of photography.

My two cents of advice:

If your camera supports multiple lenses, don't fall into the trap of having to have a zillion lenses. Pick one lens and learned to see things through the eyes of that lens first. Then move onto other lenses.

Learn the basics of flash photography. If your camera supports a shoe-mount or external flash system try to get one. Understanding the proper way to use flash lighting can make a big difference in your pictures.

Mark Hoffman
Thursday, October 31, 2002

>>
Ironically, people pay all this money to buy major megapixles, and are left with nothing but 5MB pictures that are impossible to email anyone. Most digital pix arent even printed, but viewed online, where most monitors don't even have the detail to properly display a 1 megapixel picture.

They end up having to crop and resample with a thumbnail type app (ie: reduce all those pixels they paid $600 for!!) 

Classic.
<<

Maybe current technology keeps most people from easily utilizing the 5MB pictures, but what will happen a few years from now? Based on past trends I suspect those with 1MB pixel collections will have a bunch of crappy pictures in several years. Meanwhile those with the 5MB pictures will still be able to appreciate the higher resolution of all their pictures from way back.

If you just want to post pictures to the web 1MB is probably fine, but if you want to take memento-style pictures of your wedding, baby, vacation, etc... then 5MB isn't overkill even if you can't appreciate it now.

Also, I like being able to crop from a larger image and still have a decent resolution. 

NathanJ
Thursday, October 31, 2002

Yes a few years from now 5Mp will seem puny, but then they'll be selling Giga pixel cameras then.

Simon P. Lucy
Thursday, October 31, 2002

A good photo machine like a Fuji Frontier likes input at 300 pixels/inch (please don't confuse this with printer DPI, they are very different.) For an 8x10" image you need a 7.2MB image. You can upsample a 4MB original and get a real photographic print that looks like it came from film. From a 2MB original, it will look like rubbish.
It's always better to have resolution you don't need and resample to a smaller image than to need resolution and not have it.

Andrew Wilks
Thursday, October 31, 2002

Oh, get some decent optical zoom.  (Digital zoom is bunk. )

Bella
Thursday, October 31, 2002

>A good photo machine like a Fuji Frontier likes input at >300 pixels/inch (please don't confuse this with printer >DPI, they are very different.)

Andrew, could you please explain me the difference?

Thanks

photography newbie II
Friday, November 01, 2002

I'm trying to hold out until the Nikon 5700 comes down below $1000. Megapixels >are< nice, if you like to print 8x11 glossies. But I really like the 8x optical zoom; that really increases the number of interesting pictures you can take when you're just walking around taking pictures. (For example you can take great pictures of animals without scaring them.)

Joel Spolsky
Friday, November 01, 2002

<I'm waiting until the Nikon 5700 comes down below $1000>

Joel,

You can get it online for less than that now.  I just bought the Olympus C730 from www.shopharmony.com and they did actually ship it to me, without all the overpriced accessories, for the advertised price - with free ground shipping.  This company has the 5700 for $979.  They're in Brooklyn.

I too wanted the 5700 but right now I can't afford it.

Karl Perry
Friday, November 01, 2002

Pixels/inch vs. Dots/inch

A pixel on a digital photographic processor consists of a single point with a specific RGB value. On a Fuji Frontier and other similar machines, this point is created by aiming 3 lasers (RGB) at a spot on color print paper and exposing each for the correct amount of time. There are 300 of these individual points in an inch. In practice, they're dots not points and they have some small overlap with adjacent dots.

An ink jet printer advertises dots/inch, but each pixel is composed of from 4 to 6 different colors of ink and some white space depending on the luminance value of that pixel. Some printers may include multiple spots of a color within the same pixel, thus there may be 8 or 12 microscopic ink dots in a pixel. You can usually find out what the base resolution(ppi) is for a printer. They are typically between 240 and 300 for most ink jet printers.

Andrew Wilks
Friday, November 01, 2002

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