Old 24-08-2005   #1
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Digital cameras: good or bad?

Since digital (photo) cameras have become quite cheap, everybody's getting one. Some people even have more than 1 cam (//me whistles innocently). Of course, digital camera's offer quite a lot of ease over the analog camera's. But, as shooting pics has become practically free (once you payed for the hardware of course), people seem to be shooting pics like their lives depend on it. As it doesn't cost anything, lots of ppl don't take the time to think about what they shoot, but they just keep on clicking. I find this a major downside to affordable digital cameras. On the other hand, there is lots of good stuff too (easier, faster and better workflow, multipurpose devices etc).

What do you think: did the digicams contribute to the world? Didn't they hurt the fact that photography is (and remains) an art?
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Old 25-08-2005   #2
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

I'm into it for a few years now and it's nice to see the improvements in technology (especially the delay between shooting the pic and actually capturing it was VERY annoying...)

Depening on the convenience and quality needs, I choose between Panasonic FZ5 or FZ20, NikonCoolp 5600 or 8800, NikonD70, or my old Olympus 3030 but I try not to "shoot as much pics as fit on the memory".

They do make it a lot easier for me to have pics from events you'd not make pics from with analog camera's, just because the risk of worthless pics is too high (festivals, party,...).
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Old 25-08-2005   #3
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Whilst I love Technology, the digital camera has done some damage. Having a baby a Digital Camera is a must. On the other end of the scope Kodak had a factory here in AU which shut down and left 3000 people out of work. Why? Sales of analogue film dropped so much. On that upside the price of Analogue film has dropped a heap, I can get 3 rols of Konica 200 36exp for $11. Used to be nearly that that per roll.
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Old 25-08-2005   #4
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

I've got 3 camera's at the moment - 1. Konica Minolta Dynax, Sony Cybershot en my latest cam is a Canon 350D. I use them for pleisure and ofcourse for my work, and since I've got these cam I hardly use my Agfa scanner and that save me a hell lot of time.

So thank god for Digatal camera's!
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Old 25-08-2005   #5
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

I disklike the delay between shooting pics just as Wannez. I've also learned not to get stressed by the people around me and just take my time to make a good picture. Usually i look for a right angle and click away.

Having 2 1Gb CF cards for in my Powershot S410 also isn't bad I can take about 500 pictures in the highsest quality per CF. The camera is as big as a pack of cigarettes so i usually bring it along to every meeting i go to and take lots of pictures.
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Old 25-08-2005   #6
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

@Wannez & @Mr. Belvedere: shutter lag getting less of a problem nowadays. My D70 doesn't have any noticable shutter lag (not that it's a standard consumer point and shoot cam, but still...).
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Old 25-08-2005   #7
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

i've had my finepix 602 for 3 years now and i wouldn't take pix any other way...having to buy the slr then the film then to process it etc.......im done w/ that.......as for pix as art......i think its still the same as w/ film cameras......its all in the eye....what a person sees and what others see in it.....
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Old 25-08-2005   #8
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

@ Dee-ehn

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Old 25-08-2005   #9
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Well I have a Sony digi cam (Cyber shot 3.1mega pixels) and a older Canon EOS single-lens reflex camera with 3 types of lenses. When i just want to shoot some snaps of me and some friends at a party were quality is not first priority I use my Sony. But when shooting snaps were quality is 1st priority my Sony cant beat the EOS (with manual focus, shutter speed settings etc). Sure nowadays single-lens reflex digital cameras are available but way too expensive when compared with what I had to pay for my EOS including lenses and flash etc.

About photos being art:
I dont think that has changed with digital cameras. A good photograph is a good and a bad one is a bad one. It has nothing to do with the camera used being digital or not. But what has changed is that with the digicam you take much more pictures for fun and pictures you maybe wont be looking at anymore in some years. It became a kind of well I have some more space left so just take a photo and see wether to delete it or save it for later thing (shooting before thinking or shooting without thinking lol). With the digicam you'll more and more take snaps you would not have taken with your SLR or any film type camera. On the other hand some people did the same kind of not thinking before shooting or shooting before thinking with normal cameras in the past too.
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Old 25-08-2005   #10
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Hey, I have a Sony Cybershot 5.1 MP and i have noticed something. It seems that image quality during the night is very low, especially that the images appear blurred. I think this is due to the fact that the camera takes several snapshots in split seconds then merging them, probably because it's dark and needs to get more info on the surroundings. Of course the flash doesn't help when u need to view some relatively faraway objects in the dark. I'm not a photographing guru or anything but i have tried to minimize the blur without any luck.

However, i think digital cams are much more convenient compared with analog ones for the facts mentioned above. But i'd have to agree with koba that the much better digital cams designed for professional users r a lot more expensive than their analog counterparts, at least for now.
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Old 25-08-2005   #11
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

I don't like the lag, but I do like not having to pay for pictures that I don't want, and I like being able to download the pictures, make adjustments/corrections, and print right at my desk.
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Old 25-08-2005   #12
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

My digital camera tends to use a shutter speed in between of 1/8s and 1/40s at night making it almost impossible to shoot pictures without a trypod (too slow shutter speed to compensate only a little movement of my hand when shooting making all pix some kind of blurry).
With my SLR I can use ISO 400 or even 800 or more at night making it much easier than with my digicam.
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Old 25-08-2005   #13
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

@TheMerovingian: there are several reasons why night shots get blurry. First, there's the long exposure time that is needed to get a properly exposed photograph. Shutterspeeds of 1/30s and below are sensive to movement while exposing the film/sensor. The longer the exposure time, the worse it becomes. And: digital camera's generate more noise on long exposures (because of the sensor heating up).
Another reason is that many digicams have a hard time focusing in low-light conditions. Some are equipped with an autofocus illuminator (a little light) and that helps quite a lot. External flashlight often feature such a light (much better than the internal ones) as well.

There are multiple things to do to overcome the problems of slow shutter speeds. First, you can use a tripod (or something else stable to put your cam on). To prevent from micromovements blurring your pictures, you can use a remote control or the self-timer to release the shutter without touching the camera.
Besides that, you can use a higher ISO setting (yes, that generates more noise, but some noise is better than a blurry picture; a good noise filter like NoiseNinja can help in getting enjoyable results after all. And, there's (somtimes) the option to use a faster lens. If you use a lens that can do F1/1.4, you can take good pictures at low light conditions without too much troubles. The only thing you should take into account is the shallow DOF.
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Old 25-08-2005   #14
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Affordable Digital Cameras have definitely changed the way we live.

When traveling to new places, I find that I have to completely "put down" the camera for at least a full day to enjoy the experience and visuals completely with my own eyes.
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Old 26-08-2005   #15
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

it seems kind of like the saying about 700 monkeys with 700 typewriters... you get a lot of junk but you may get the works of shakespeare. honestly though it is not usually the subjects that suck it is the composition/framing of the pics.

as proof of my true freak heritage even my camera is a cdburner

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Old 26-08-2005   #16
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

I have 2 main cameras also, a Sony Dsc-85 4 meg and a old Canon AE1 Program with a medium and long zoom. When I'm doing critical stuff like air Shows and Drag racing and like that I use the old Canon for the nice zoom and fast ISO. When I go to a car show, zoo, party, hoiliday, whatever I use the Sony digital. Easier to use and if I don't like the shot I can erase it in the camera and try again, plus I can fiddle with settings easily and see imidiate results. And no film to buy or pay to process is nice, too bad their memory is proprietary and a bit more spendy. I want to get a Digital SLR some day soon then I can kinda merge the cameras for the best of both.
For all out visual quality a properly done analog film shot is still probably best depending on film speed and things but digital can be excellent with the semi pro slr's out now.
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Old 26-08-2005   #17
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

i've got a Nikon F90 35mm and a Sony Cybershot DSC-P9 (4mp)...much prefer shooting with my 35mm, but obviously the P&S digicam is more convenient...

the question of deleting "bad" photographs has been mulled over by many, but for the most part i think digital has come a long way and been a blessing for the average consumer and professional alike...
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Old 26-08-2005   #18
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cnlson
as proof of my true freak heritage even my camera is a cdburner


Quote:
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...and a old Canon AE1
Nice one Darty, does that one burn at 8x on your NEC?
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Old 26-08-2005   #19
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee-ehn
Since digital (photo) cameras have become quite cheap, everybody's getting one. Some people even have more than 1 cam (//me whistles innocently). Of course, digital camera's offer quite a lot of ease over the analog camera's. But, as shooting pics has become practically free (once you payed for the hardware of course), people seem to be shooting pics like their lives depend on it. As it doesn't cost anything, lots of ppl don't take the time to think about what they shoot, but they just keep on clicking. I find this a major downside to affordable digital cameras. On the other hand, there is lots of good stuff too (easier, faster and better workflow, multipurpose devices etc).

What do you think: did the digicams contribute to the world? Didn't they hurt the fact that photography is (and remains) an art?
I just recently bought the Canon Powershot A510 which is absolutely fine for me, since I just use it for quick pics for family emails, parties, etc. It has some more advanced manual settings, if I felt like trying them out someday. In my opinion, photography for the sake of art is in no danger from the cheap digital craze. 99% of the people who are buying all these cheap cameras aren't using them to take magazine-worthy shots. They buy for the same reason as me, most likely; it's so much easier and convenient when you don't have to take the film in for processing, you can see and delete any bad shots immediately, etc. They mostly want to take a quick picture of a memory. These people are still going to take their family in for holiday photos at Olan Mills, Sears, whatever. They still realize that when you want a quality keepsake photo, you go to a professional with a film camera. As for artistic shots, I belong to a family of photographers. My father was almost religious when it came to his camera, lenses, accessories, etc. He loved photography, but didn't live long enough to see the new technology that most certainly would have excited him like a little boy. He would have bought the best manual digital camera available, and would have spent hours taking pictures of flowers, insects, and people, just like he did with his old cameras. My aunt and her children are also avid digital photographers. They understand all the technical stuff about aperture, lighting, and shutter speed. Every photo they've ever emailed me has blown me away with simple beauty. These people know how to photograph. I think digital cameras are just another tool that real photographers can use to make art, and amateurs can use for dead easy snapshots.
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Old 26-08-2005   #20
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wesociety



Nice one Darty, does that one burn at 8x on your NEC?
Naw it burns on the 1620, the 40 is still having teething pains :P
I needed a good film camera for a drag race I was going to and my old Canon had battery problems so I bought that one refurbished for 200. Great optics but auto focus would be nice. I had the 2 lenses so didn't want to try another brand.
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Old 26-08-2005   #21
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Most phones sold today in South Korea are also digital cameras so more and more people take pictures with phones than dedicated cameras. Though a lot of people still believe phones are just not good enough to compete against "real" cameras, that's not the important point. The big difference is that most people carry phones when they are in subway cars, taxi, on the streets, at home, etc. with them but not camera-only devices. Digital cameras have helped making photography ubiquitous. Camera phones have helped making it even more ubiquitous. They are also rapidly replacing dedicated camcorders.
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Old 26-08-2005   #22
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

99% of mobile phones here in Japan come with camera functions and everywhere you can see people shooting around with their phone. But the camera in phones is often 2mega pixels or less. On the other hand these phones with camera created some new kind of crime too. People started to take pictures of pages in a magazine in the bookstore (take a copy and dont buy it) and other things....
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Old 26-08-2005   #23
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Phones with 5-megapixel to 7-megapixel camera and 640*480 30fps features are increasingly common in South Korea. Under South Korean law, all mobile camera phones must be designed to make easily identifiable sound when taking pictures in order to discourage their users from taking unwanted pictures, especially inside subway cars where there are literally hundreds of people with camera phones around any one person during rush hours. There are tricks to disable the sound or at least nearly kill it but the new law surely prevented millions of crimes that are never caught.
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Old 26-08-2005   #24
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

YEah its law over here too that digicams (phones too) make some kind of sound when shooting pictures but its very easy to remove that feature...
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Old 26-08-2005   #25
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Re: Digital cameras: good or bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee-ehn
What do you think: did the digicams contribute to the world?
Yes, I think it did. Even before digital photography, I think that the leisure photography had become the main application of photography in the general public. Case in point: look at all those cheap disposable film cameras that were so popular before digital. So for the large portion of the population who don't know what a shutter speed is, digital is great because it'll allow them to do what they've always been doing with greatly reduced cost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee-ehn
Didn't they hurt the fact that photography is (and remains) an art?
No, I don't think so. The people who treat photography as an art will still shoot seriously and will still take the time to do things right. The people who go about using digital cameras in a carefree manner are the people who would've done the same with film anyway, so I don't think that behavior has fundamentally changed.

I used to not know anything about aperature, shutter speed, etc. Then I got a digital camera, and because there is no film cost, I decided to take advantage of that and learn about it, so I started to read various tutorials and guides on photography and playing around and experimenting with what I can do. I would not have done this with film because of the film cost, development cost, and (most importantly, I think) the lag between shooting a picture and seeing the result. So in this respect, I think that digital cameras are probably the best way for someone who knows nothing about photography as an art to start learning a little about it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee-ehn
There are multiple things to do to overcome the problems of slow shutter speeds.
I think that by far one of the best $10 USD investment that I ever made was buying this. It's small and portable enough (when folded, it's smaller than my camera) that I can just hook it to my belt or put it in my pocket, and it can be deployed pretty quickly. And unlike other mini-tripods, it has a velcro strap so I can strap it to signposts or trees if I need height.
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