- ThanIs a semi-professional camera different from a "soap box"?
- What is ISO, shutter speed and aperture?
- DSLR Features
- System cameras
- Checking the camera sensor before buying it
Photography is a very interesting activity, it helps us capture the most interesting moments of life, as well as express our mood and state of mind through pictures. For many, photography is a profession, and for others it is a hobby, but in any case, photography always remains one of the art forms. And if you decide to take up digital photography more or less seriously, then first you need to start choosing the right camera for this camera. Since professional cameras are expensive and simply not needed for amateur photographers, a semi-professional camera is most suitable for this purpose. However, this is not a specific, but a rather vague and broad concept. And now you will find out what it means and how to choose a semi-professional camera.
ThanIs a semi-professional camera different from a "soap box"?
This group of cameras is designed for people who are no longer able to use the standard "soap box", but who are not going to use the camera for commercial purposes, that is, to work in a photo studio.
First of all, such a camera is distinguished by the ability to manually adjust the ISO value, that is, the level of the matrix light sensitivity, the ability to control aperture and shutter speed, and manual focus. In addition, in such cameras, you can manually set the white balance. Also, in all semi-professional cameras, unlike conventional "soap dishes", it is possible to change the lens. One of the decisive factors in deciding which semi-professional camera to choose is the choice of lenses from a camera brand. The choice of a camera may depend on how wide a fleet of optics a certain company has and how accessible this optics is to a buyer.
What is ISO, shutter speed and aperture?
If you want to do photography and have not yet come across these concepts, then you definitely need to find out what it is. ISO is the level of light sensitivity of the camera matrix. The higher its value, the higher the light sensitivity, however, noise appears at high values (the presence of many multi-colored dots in the photograph). Therefore, it is best to avoid too high ISO values in low light whenever possible, compensating for low light byexposure lengthening. Before choosing a semi-professional camera and finally deciding that you will buy this particular model, if possible, look at the pictures taken with this model of camera at a high ISO value, and evaluate the level of noise in the photo.
Shutter speed is the amount of time the shutter between the lens and the camera matrix will be open. This period of time can range from a few fractions of a second to a few seconds. The amount of light that has time to hit the matrix depends on the shutter speed. But too slow a shutter speed can result in a blurry photo, to avoid this it is advisable to use a tripod.
Aperture is a device in the lens, consisting of petals. She is able to open and hide. With an open aperture, more sunlight enters the matrix, so you can set a faster shutter speed. Also, the depth of field (DOF) depends on how open the aperture is. If the aperture is open, the depth of field will be less, if it is covered - more.
The so-called "reflex cameras" are cameras in which a mirror is used, which is clear from the name. It sits in front of the sensor at an angle of forty-five degrees and serves to redirect the image from the lens directly to the viewfinder you are looking through. This image is inverted, so in the design of SLR camerasthere is also a pentaprism that flips the image reflected from the mirror.
Also in SLR cameras there is a "LiveView" mode, which allows you to display an image on the camera screen. If you are not going to use the optical viewfinder because it is more convenient for you to take pictures by focusing on the screen, then the mirror in the camera will not perform any functions for you.
Many companies are engaged in the production of such cameras, the most famous of them are Canon and Nikon. The answer to the question of which semi-professional SLR camera to choose will depend on your financial capabilities and tastes and preferences. When choosing a camera, be guided by how comfortable it is in your hand, how convenient the menu is and the location of the buttons, etc. And, of course, the quality of the pictures. You can take a couple of test shots with different cameras right in the store, and then see on the big screen which ones are better. It is quite difficult to evaluate the quality of pictures on the built-in display of the camera.
System (or, as they are also called, mirrorless) cameras are cameras in which there is no mirror and pentaprism, respectively, there is also no optical viewfinder. From the simplest "soap dishes" such cameras are distinguished by the presence of all manual settings, the ability to change the lens, and the larger physical size of the matrix. It is on this size that the quality of the resultingphotos. The larger the matrix, the better pictures you can get in low light, the less noise there will be. Therefore, even when choosing a “soap dish”, first of all, you need to pay attention not at all to the number of megapixels, but to the physical size of the matrix or to the crop factor. The crop factor is a value that shows how much the size of a given matrix is smaller than the size of a full frame (35x24 mm). For example, a crop factor of 2 means that the sensor used in this camera is 2 times smaller than the full frame size. These days, cameras with a full-frame sensor are quite rare and are professional, in addition, they, of course, have a high price.
In system cameras, a matrix of 17, 3x13 mm, that is, 3x4 inches, is mainly used. The crop factor is two. Rarely used matrices with a crop factor of 1.5, that is, the same size as in SLR cameras. Cameras with such sensors are mainly manufactured by Sony, one of the most popular manufacturers of mirrorless cameras.
Olympus and Panasonic are also the most famous manufacturers of mirrorless cameras.
Since you want a good and high-quality semi-professional camera, you should definitely pay attention to the quality of the plastic from which the body is made. Also, the body can be metal - it's even better. It is imperative when checking the camera in the store that you need to press all the buttons to make sure they are good.work and do not sink.
Since choosing a semi-professional camera is a responsible task, you can find user reviews on a specific camera model that interests you (before buying it).
Checking the camera sensor before buying it
Now you already know how to choose the right semi-professional camera, and you can go to the store. When you have already looked at the model that you like, checked the quality of its assembly, it remains to conduct one more small test - check the camera's matrix for broken and hot pixels. Broken - those pixels that are non-working and do not respond to light are white dots. Hot - also faulty pixels, which always remain a certain color.
To check, you need to turn off the flash, close the camera lens and take a couple of pictures at different shutter speeds. When performing this procedure, the minimum ISO value, the maximum image resolution, and the noise reduction function must be set. Now you need to view these pictures on a large monitor.
If there are dots of different colors on the photo - the matrix is defective, since these are the very hot and broken pixels. They will be present in all the pictures taken with this camera without exception, it is especially unpleasant if they are in the center. If the photo is completely black, you can safely take this copy.