Do you need a digital camera?

Do you need a digital camera to get good quality family pictures? I have many people come in each week to have family pictures printed. Usually they tell me they are “only images that were taken on their cell phone”. That leads us to a conversation about whether they need a “real” camera to take their family pictures.

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So lets talk about the reasons that you may need a digital camera and the reasons that you do not need a digital camera.

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Let’s start with the quality that you’ll get from a smartphone as compared to a digital camera. No matter how good the smartphone is, or how high the resolution is, even the cheapest digital camera will have a better image quality than the most expensive smart phone.

This has nothing to do with the megapixels of the smartphone but it has to do with the fact that a digital camera uses a real glass lens that has the ability to focus. Whereas a smartphone does not. On cheaper smart phones the lens is actually plastic.

Don’t get me wrong I print many pictures from smartphones and they look really good. And I print lots of pictures from digital cameras and they also look good.

The biggest difference that I tell people is the following. With a digital camera no matter how expensive it is, or how new it is, the images tend to have a more painted look to them over the photo look of a digital camera. Lines are not as sharp when using a smartphone as they are with a digital camera. The colors also do not seem to be as rich, or as clear if you like, with a smartphone as it is with a digital camera.


Next let us consider the resolution of the photos that you’re taking. With today’s high resolution smartphones the image files are large enough to print up to very large sizes. Just like all digital cameras. I have done prints up to 24×48″ from smartphones.

A digital camera for convenience??

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Now let’s consider convenience. This is where a smartphone shines and outperforms digital cameras.

Just about everyone that I know from the age of 12 on up carry a smartphone today. That means that no matter where you are you have the ability to take a picture. Whereas with a camera you have to remember to take it with you so you can take pictures.

Do you find it hard to carry a camera? You do not need the huge DSLR camera. You can buy a small point and shoot camera to use. There are waterproof, shock proof, drop proof cameras that can take a beating and still capture your memories.

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SO the conclusion – do you need a digital camera?

My conclusion is this. I think you should have a good quality digital camera for those times when a smartphone will not work. Like at a graduation ceremony that’s inside. Or at a wedding in a dark church or hall. Or at a sporting event where you need a little bit more zoom than what your smartphone has. The camera will perform so much better in these situations.

But at the same time make sure that you use your smartphone for those times when you just don’t want to carry or not able to carry the camera.

And remember after you take your pictures. Whether it be with a camera or with your smartphone make sure that you are backing them up and that you’re getting them printed. No matter how good the quality is if they get lost they are lost. When a hard drive or computer crashes, or they get misplaced and erased your memories are gone.

When you are looking for quality archival printing in Lethbridge bring your files to me. I will get you the best image possible so your memories last a long time!

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