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Showing posts with label jargon buster for DSLR. Show all posts
Showing posts with label jargon buster for DSLR. Show all posts


Jargon Buster

Compact System Camera (SCS)

Cameras which offer interchangeable lenses while omitting the viewfinder and mirror box construction common to DSLR cameras. There include Sony's NEX series and Olympus's PEN range, as well as NIkon's a system and Samsung's NX line of models.

Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR)

A digital SLR camera. which is constructed around a mirror both and pentamirror/pentaprism assembly, such as the Canon EOS 700D and Nikon D5300. These are popular among beginners. enthusiasts an professionals. thanks to their wide compatibility with different lenses, manual control over exposure and ergonomics.

Compact Camera

A small camera whose lens cannot be removed, in contrast to interchangeable lens cameras such as DSLRs. These are often cheaper than CSC and DSLR cameras. Although they usually have more limited functionality and smaller sensors.


The aperture of a lens refers to the size of its opening which allows light through to the camera. This is created by a series of blades inside the optic, and is usually regulated through the camera body. although some older lenses have physycal aperture rings around their barrels. An aperture of f/2 of f/2.8 is classed as being large [or wide] because the opening itself is largest than those created by higher number apertures such as f/16 or f/22.

Shutter Speed

The length of time that the shutter inside the camera is open, exposing the sensor to light. Longer shutter speeds let in more light. and so are often required in low light conditions, or when the intention is to blur certain elements in the scene. Faster shutter speed are ideal for freezing motion, such as when photographing sports.


The rear panel on the back of a camera which shows captured images and videos, as well as the live feed from the sensor. These are usually TFT LCD types, although some cameras now make use of Organic Light Emitting Diode [OLED] alternatives.

Resolution is usually specified in dots, compact camera displays often have 230 or 460 dots, while those displays that are on high end enthusiast compacts, CSCs and DSLRs are usually 921k dots or higher.


Also known as 'sensitivity' the ISO range of a camera determines its latitude for capturing images in different conditions. For a given camera, images captured at lower sensitivities generally contain less noise than those captured higher up, as the signal from the sensor - which contains unwanted noise requires less amplification.

Optical ViewFinder

A viewfinder which relies on an optical, rather than electronic, constructions. DSLRs are equipped which optical viewfinders, which present the view through the lens. Those on cheaper DSLRs are constructed with a hollow chamber with mirrored sides [pentamirrors] while those on pricier models feature a ground glass prism [pentaprism] which is brighter.

Electronic ViewFinder (EVF)

An electronic alternative to an optical viewfinder. These are typically integrated into bridge cameras and some Compact System Cameras, where an optical viewfinder is either not possible or less desirable. More recent EVFs are constructed from OLED panels rather than LCDs, and some of these are surprisingly detailed and bright.

Sensor Size

The physical size of the sensor inside a camera. Cameras with larger sensors often produce better quality images than those with smaller ones, as each photo-site is larger. A larger capacity allows its signal to noise ratio to be higher, as a result images stand a better chance of having a wider dynamic range and of being less affected by noise.

Burst Rate

The speed at which a camera can fire consecutive frames, given in frames per second (fps). Many recent cameras have a standard fps rate which captures at the sensor's full resolution, which further faster options which output images at a reduced pixel count. Often a camera's fastest burst mode will only be possible with focus and exposure taken from the first frame.

Neutral Density (ND) Filter

ND filters are commonly used with DSLR cameras, although some enthusiast compacts now have these integrated into their lenses. Their purpose is to reduce exposure times, so that longer shutter speeds can be used, with the 'neutral' part of their name signifying that they are designed to have no effect on the colour balance of an image.