With increasingly sophisticated consumer point and shoots being launched every day, it’s difficult to decide whether one needs a DSLR or not. This article will explore the Pros and Cons of a DSLR camera.

Sensor Size

One of the biggest points in favor of using a DSLR, which is often lost in the Megapixel war, is the fact that DSLRs have a larger sensor. The sensor size of a camera is important for a variety of reasons. A bigger sensor can firstly capture more light. This means better higher shutter speed, better night photography and less blurs. A bigger sensor also leads to bigger apertures and hence more shallow depth of field required for portrait photography. Given 2 cameras with the same number of megapixels, the one with the bigger sensor will always have less noise since each pixel is bigger and can receive more light.

Faster Response Time

SLRs use very high speed mechanical mirrors and shutters to expose the film. This means that the camera captures a photo with very little lag which is unmatched by consumer point and shoots. This is key for sports and action photography. With a point and shoot, it’s extremely difficult to capture the exact moment the dolphin leapt into the air or the runner crossed the finish line.

Lenses

Digital SLRs also allow you to change the lens on the front of the camera. Although some consumer cameras have introduced interchangeable lenses, the variety of lenses available for the popular SLRs are unmatched. As you get more involved in photography, you’ll want to be able to add Macro lenses or super wide angle lens or other speciality lenses. DSLRs also provide the flexibility of investing in a low end lens to begin with and then buying better quality lenses later.

The BAD

The bad part of using an SLR is the size. If you are a casual photographer trying to document your travels, an SLR with all the lenses and accessories might be too bulky to carry. Hikers may find SLRs unwieldy. The professional looking SLRs also attract the wrong kind of attention. Expensive SLRs are more likely to be stolen that the point and shoot you can slip into your pocket.

Shooting people in the street with an SLR can also make people conscious and makes you stand out. The same people might have been indifferent to shots taken with a simple point and shoot.

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