5 Reasons to Upgrade/Buy a DSLR

Your point and shoot camera may not come handy when it comes to shooting professional quality photographs, since it may be lacking few features that you require to explore your creativity. To enhance the level of customization and enrich the quality of your photographs, you require a good DSLR camera.

Initially, DSLR cameras were not as popular as conventional SLR cameras, but today, DSLRs have taken a huge step in photography. Most professional photographers prefer using DSLRs, and recommend them to amateurs. However, if you are a beginner, you should start shooting with a point and shoot while exploring its various features. Once you have learned all its features, you can make a choice to go for either a DSLR or a semi-DSLR camera.

Here are 5 Reasons to why you need to upgrade to a DSLR:

#1. Speed – Fast and Continuous Shooting

DSLRs are conveniently faster when it comes to capturing photos. If you are using a point and shoot camera, it is quite frustrating to wait for the camera to process the image after you have clicked the shutter button. Well, DSLRs react faster when it comes to processing of photos. With a DSLR camera, there is virtually no delay between the time that you click the shutter button and the image takes to process.

Speed - Fast and Continuous Shooting - DSLRImage Credits: Prashant

DSLRs have faster power-up time, the capability of focusing quickly, faster shutter speed, negligent shutter lag and higher processing ability.

#2. Image Quality and Superior Sensors

DSLR cameras have large image sensors, and it is one of the main reasons why one should consider upgrading to a DSLR. Sensors are made up of photodiodes which are also called as pixels. A photodiode is a type of photo detector that is capable of converting light into photons, which are then translated to a brighter image to enhance the quality of the image.

Image sensors allow you to capture photos with larger pixel sizes that produce higher quality images. A larger sensor allows a larger number of photodiodes, and the higher the number of photodiodes, the better the quality of the image.

FYI: Image sensor used in a point and shoot camera is 25 times smaller than the ones used in DSLRs, and that is why they produce a low/medium quality photos.

#3. Multiple Lens Usability

One of the biggest reasons to upgrade to a DSLR camera is that it provides you with a wide range of shooting styles. Unlike point and shoot cameras that have a fixed optical zoom, DSLRs can be fitted with a variety of interchangeable quality lenses depending on what you are photographing.

For instance, if you were shooting landscape photographs, you would be using a wide-angle lens. But if you suddenly have to shoot a macro shot, then you can easily change to a macro lens without any difficulties.

Canon Lenses

DSLRs are not just compatible with lenses. They can also be fitted with things like special effect filters, remote flashes, lens hoods, flash diffusers, lens extenders and strobe lights.

#4. Manual Controls

DSLRs offer manual settings for more control over your image. The manual mode allows you to control aperture, shutter speed and ISO speed. Here’s an example of the Canon 60D’s manual settings –

Manual SettingsImage Credits: Daniel Straus

As you can see, you have the option to set shutter speed, aperture, ISO, white balance, exposure compensation, metering, resolution and focus points. Being able to manually control all of these things lets you get really specific and precise with your images.

FYI: Although point and shoot cameras also come with manual settings, DSLRs offer more precise settings.

#5. Shooting in RAW

Point and shoot cameras process and compress your photographs as JPEGs. However, DSLRs provide you an option to shoot in RAW (NEF in Nikon). RAW image files contain minimally processed data from the image sensor – the output from each of the original red, green and blue pixels. In simple words, RAW image files are straight out of the sensor.

The diagram below will help you understand the difference between RAW and JPEG –

JPEG Processing

However, there are a few drawbacks of RAW images. Capturing photos in RAW will slow down your camera. Try shooting RAW images without leaving the shutter button. You camera appears to slog, but if you try the same without RAW, it will effortlessly capture the photos. Also, RAW files are extremely large in size which will hog up your memory card. On an average, a RAW file comes up to 18MB in size.

Useful articles that you might be interested in reading –

Control Your Canon DSLR Using Your Android Handset/Tablet

Chainfire one of the most talented developers around over at XDA developer forums has released a new app dubbed DSLR Controller. As the name suggests, the app allows users to control their DSLR directly from their Android handset and/or tablet.

Below is a video of the DSLR Controller app in action :

Here is the full list of features which the app packs :

– Live View
– Auto Focus (tap Live View)
– Manual focus adjustments in Auto Focus mode
– Histogram
– Zoom control
– Grid display
– Bulb capture
– Continuous capture
– Extensive modification of settings
— Shutter speed
— Aperture
— Exposure Compensation and Bracket
— Flash Compensation
— ISO speed
— Auto-Focus Mode
— Focus and Zoom area (tap-and-hold Live View)
— Picture Style
— Drive Mode
— White Balance
— Color Temperature
— Auto-Lighting Optimizer
— Metering Mode

How is this even possible, you ask? Well, this app makes use of the USB O-T-G feature found on the latest Android Honeycomb based Tablets. At the moment, there is only one Android phone which supports USB O-T-G and that is the beastly Samsung Galaxy S II. There is another catch, only Canon’s EOS series of DSLR are supported. However, with time, I am sure the app will be compatible with DSLRs of various brands. For the former problem, I expect the next version of Android (Ice Cream Sandwich) to have USB host capabilities.

The app is already available in the Android Market for download, for a whopping €5.99. Since the app is a very early phase of testing, users should keep in mind some bugs and crashes are to be expected.

How It’s Made – Camera Lenses [Video]

Have you ever wondered how camera lenses are manufactured? Why it takes days to make a new lens? Well, here’s an interesting look into how lenses for DSLR cameras are made. It takes a total of six weeks to make one optical lens. Camera lenses go through several inspections to make sure that the glass gets to the final stage without defects or any dust particles on it.

Here’s a video that demonstrates how camera lenses are made –

The Process:

There are four main manufacturing processes.

  • Grinding and Polishing lens elements
  • Coating lenses
  • Producing the barrel
  • Assembling the lens

The videos show a step-by-step procedure on how a Canon 500mm lens is made. These videos were taken in Canon’s lens manufacturing factory in Japan.



The steps in  manufacturing  a  camera  lens is not (all) computerized. Camera lens requires  fine adjustment and testing until computerized machines are used.

In the above video, you can see that the manufacturing of the lens  goes through a series of steps. Here are the lens manufacturing steps as shown in the above videos:

  1. Material blending
  2. Pre-fusing
  3. Melted glass is allowed to cool naturally
  4. Cutting the glass into pieces
  5. Fusing
  6. Mixing
  7. Churning
  8. Clarification
  9. Homogenization
  10. Shape the glass into sheets
  11. Shaping and pressing process
  12. Grinning processes
  13. Heating the glass and form its shape by pressing (by hands or by automatic machines)
  14. Annealing
  15. Further polishing
  16. Rough grinding that produces that curved surface of the lens
  17. Fine grinding
  18. Polishing and surface curvature adjustment
  19. Optical inspection
  20. Clean with ultrasonic washing machines
  21. Alignment
  22. Coating
  23. The lens assembly process itself (done by hand for Canon L lenses)

Hat tip to Digital Photography Writer for sharing this.