dslr or bridge

Started Mar 28, 2013 | Discussions
shot422
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dslr or bridge
Mar 28, 2013

i am completely new at this. i know dslr give more creativity, interchangeable lenses etc but are they actually better in image quality. i hear how far bridge (ex: pan FZ150, 200 etc) have come in IQ. want good IQ especially in lower light.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150
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mobi1
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 28, 2013

DSLR usually have much bigger sensors which will give better image quality.

If your bridge camera uses same size sensor, then that might offer comparable quality image.

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Kokeen4231
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 28, 2013

Bridge cameras give you lots of flexibility(wide zoom range) but at the expense of image quality(small sensor). Dslr's win in image quality in almost every sense, like dynamic range, noise control(grainy images)...

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mgd43
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to Kokeen4231, Mar 28, 2013

DSLR's are better in low light than bridge cameras because they have larger sensors that are better at high iso's and because they can take faster lenses. Bridge cameras are capable of very good image quality under most conditions, but DSLR's are still better.

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Eddaweaver
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 28, 2013

i am completely new at this. i know dslr give more creativity, interchangeable lenses etc but are they actually better in image quality. i hear how far bridge (ex: pan FZ150, 200 etc) have come in IQ. want good IQ especially in lower light.

Nearly all "bridge" cameras have small 1/2.3" or 1/2.33" sensors the same size as the typical cheap compact camera. The Fujifilm X-S1 is the only exception among the current crop of bridge cameras with a 2/3" sensor.

http://www.dpreview.com/news/2002/10/07/sensorsizes

The sensors in all SLRs or SLTs are much larger, usally "APS-C".

Sensor size is influential on image quality so a larger sensor usually means better resolution and high ISO (low light) performance.

Mirrorless cameras, with the exception of the Pentax Q and Nikon 1, have sensors like those found in dSLRs.

What are you looking for in a camera?

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shot422
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to Eddaweaver, Mar 28, 2013

thanks everyone. eddaweaver, one of my chief complaints when i see my friends pics with their bridge is the poor IQ in low light. i was wondering if there are any bridge cameras that do a good job there or if i am better off with a dslr

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Virginia Bill
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 28, 2013

As everyone else has said, a bigger sensor means better IQ, especially in extreme situations. But the level of IQ which meets your needs depends also on what you do with your images. Most people are happy with P&S cameras (or bridge cameras or travel zoom cameras) because they view their images primarily (or entirely) on computer screens. No one can guarantee that a current bridge camera will produce acceptable images in your circumstances of use. But no one can offer that guarantee about a dlsr either. Every camera design has limits. You succeed as a photographer by understanding and working within your camera's limits.

In other words, a bridge camera might work for you. Or not. Short of field testing, there's no way to tell.

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MarkInSF
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 29, 2013

shot422 wrote:

i am completely new at this. i know dslr give more creativity, interchangeable lenses etc but are they actually better in image quality. i hear how far bridge (ex: pan FZ150, 200 etc) have come in IQ. want good IQ especially in lower light.

In optimal circumstances, on a bright day, at its best focal length, aimed at a subject with limited dynamic range, a bridge camera can take a picture that will look the same as a dslr picture to most people, at least when viewed on a computer monitor.

Change any of those parameters and the dslr will be able to accommodate the change better.   The much bigger dslr sensor can capture more dynamic range, and gives a less noisy image in low light.   The dslr's available lenses are more sophisticated and, when chosen properly, have more contrast, less flare, less distortion, and reduced chromatic aberration compared to the generalist superzoom lenses of bridge cameras, lenses designed to be adequate at many focal lengths but undistinguished at any of them.   The dslr and appropriate lenses also give a control of depth of field not possible with the bridge camera.

Bridge cameras have their uses.   As vacation snapshot cameras they can be fun, and for wildlife photography they are often the only affordable, practical solution.   Some photographers keep one around for wildlife use, because they don't have a lens anywhere near that long for their dslr (or whatever.)

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Eddaweaver
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 29, 2013

If low light is the concern then a bridge camera won't be an antidote to that problem.

Possibly a Sony RX100 (1" sensor) might be good enough for you if you want to avoid carrying a large camera. But a good large sensor camera with a large aperture lens is the best option.

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baloo_buc
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Re: dslr or bridge
In reply to shot422, Mar 29, 2013
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