Understanding The Digital Camera Zoom


Understanding the zoom of the digital camera can be very confusing for many casual photographers. Some information is very clear to the users of cameras, such as megapixels and the size of the screen. Generally, there are two types of zoom in digital cameras: optical and digital.

Optical Zoom

An optical zoom works by measuring the change in focal distance (the distance between the center of the lens and the image sensor) of the lens. For example, if you move the camera lens away from the image sensor, the image sensor captures a reduced amount of objects and is magnified, resulting in an increase.

The Digital Camera Zoom

If your camera has an optical zoom, you may find that you have full control over where the zoom stops (known as soft zoom). However, many digital cameras have limited zoom settings that offer four to seven zoom positions.

Digital zoom

Digital zoom is a process in which the photo is cut and enlarged digitally. In most cases, you can perform digital zoom in the post-production phase, giving you more control over the loss of image quality. If you do not have access to photo processing software, it is advisable to run high resolution when using digital zoom, so quality is not important.

What does the camera zoom mean?

When you buy a digital camera, you will notice that the zoom measurements are indicated by a number next to an "x". The higher the number, the greater the possibility of magnification. Manufacturers measure the extreme of the lens and the multiplier, where "x" is the difference between the main measurements and the secondary measurements. For example, a camera with a minimum magnification of 35mm and a 10x optical zoom has a maximum magnification of 350mm.

Often, digital camera manufacturers will combine optical and digital zoom measurements to show a large picture on the front of the box. This is not correct, so it is important that you read the small print to find the optical zoom image.

When you look at the zoom of the digital camera, it is recommended to do some research to make sure you buy a camera that offers good quality magnification.
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