Our love of digital cameras seems to be because the results are instant as film is no longer required to be processed. With numerous functions they do not need the complicated mechanical components of a standard film camera. Of course, because the images are digital, it means that they can be stored, filed and manipulated using a computer or specialized printer. These images are stored as pixels; essentially a small dot digitally represented by 1’s and 0’s which certain equipment can read.

Focusing light through a lens onto a suitable receptive surface is still common to both types of camera. The only difference between a digital camera and film cameras is how they capture this light inside the camera itself. There are two methods of achieving this; one is more expensive than the other and called a CCD or charge coupled device. While other low-end models use complementary metal oxide semiconductor or CMOS as an image device, most developers do not believe that it will replace the CCD for higher end cameras.

By using the CMOS sensor, many models have become more affordable for those users that do not require such a high performance device. The digital camera converts the light it receives like millions of minute solar cells and both the CCD and CMOS end up storing an image but just using a different method to do it. When shopping for a camera of this type, you should take note of certain key features. Look for models with over 6 megapixels and you won’t go far wrong as they will provide decent images; if you are lucky you may find a model that is discounted because a new version is about to be introduced.

Where you have a choice, optical zooms on digital cameras are better than digital ones – always; perhaps you can remember how grainy and blurred images become when you used your camcorder’s digital zoom function? Rechargeable batteries can be charged up to a thousand times and save money, do you need any other advice for why they are best? Although most are supplied with a number of photo functions, try for as many as you can because you will appreciate the effects that can be achieved; below are just a few examples:

* Macro (close up shots)
* Web cam function
* Negative image

With large megapixel models, image storage is another issue to look out for and a storage card will be necessary. With higher resolution models now the norm, forget anything lower than 1GB of storage space if you want to save the image at the highest resolution.

If you are going to be taking your camera everywhere, choose a handy and portable model. So by doing this you won’t feel as if you are a journalist or nature photographer wherever you go. By using this information you shouldn’t go to far wrong when you go to buy your camera. The digital camera has reinvented photography for the masses and this is a trend that looks set to continue.