DSLR questions

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DSLR questions

  • i've been thinking of purchasing a dslr for amature photography. i was reading on the specs on different brands and found out that dslr cams, aside from canon, uses a ccd image sensor while canon uses a cmos image sensor. from what i've read (correct me if i'm wrong) a ccd image sensor processes the picture line by line and cmos processes the pic as a whole image... my queston is, is it very much like the pic formats for tvs? like ccd is interlaced and cmos is progressive? if it is so then a cmos image sensor is better compared to a ccd processor?

    any enlightenment on this issue will be very much appreciated... it's been driving me nuts for weeks now. lol.

    [edited by: Salabadjuk at 5:17 PM (GMT -5) on Tue, Feb 17 2009]
  • My understanding is that the biggest difference between CCD and CMOS sensors is that CMOS uses a little less power than CCD. They're also manufactured differently. Canon has used CMOS sensors in their DSLRs for a while, and Nikon has just switched from CCD. Sony now uses CMOS, too (they make Nikon's sensors). As for how each sensor turns the light that hits it into electrons, I have no idea - and as a photographer, I don't even care. In my opinion, there are a hundred more important factors to consider when you're researching cameras.

    Sensor type is really just one small factor in how a digital camera makes an image. There's other processing hardware, software, firmware...it all works together differently in each manufacturer's camera body. Lenses make a difference, too.

    Camera companies will always try to convince you that theirs is the better sensor, and pixel peepers in camera forums will, too. I'm not saying they're all wrong, but in real-life situations you'll never notice any difference between CCD and CMOS sensors.

    I've used all kinds of digital SLRs, and I can say that they're all pretty good in their own ways. I settled on Canon because I already had a few lenses, and my dad and I can swap lenses when we're together. If not for those facts, I could as easily gone for Nikon, Sony, or Pentax. So really, you can't lose!

    Good luck,



  • thanks a many zakb!!! that cleared my thoughts.

    i think i'll be settling for a nikon d40, 6 megapixels is good enough for me. i don't see a reason buying a big megapixel camera and then shrink it to a smaller size when it gets into my computer. the resolution of the d40 will be good enough for me, unless you think otherwise....

  • 6MP is plenty! I've made 20x30" prints from my 6MP Digital Rebel that look great. Maybe not if I had a magnifying glass right up against it, but you step back a few feet to look at a big print, right? For the 8x10s, 11x14, and 16x20" prints we tend to make, 6MP is great. And your D40 will be lightweight and easy to carry, an added bonus.

    Here's an example: I have a 26" monitor that uses a resolution of 1920x1200...so if I fill up that screen with a photo, it's only roughy a 2-megapixel image (1920 x 1200 = 2,304,000 pixels, or 2.3 megapixels). Unless you become a full-time wedding photographer, I doubt you'd ever miss the extra pixels.

    Good luck!

  • thanks a million zakb!!!Yes