The 10 best digital cameras in 2016

OK, we admit it, it’s an impossible question. The best camera for a pro photographer is a million miles from the best camera for an adventure sports nut. So what we’ve done is pick out what we think are the standout cameras in their fields. This may be because they have the most amazing features and specifications, because they’re amazing value for what they offer or because they are just brilliant at the job they’ve been designed for.

Along the way we’ll explain some of the jargon and the differences between cameras, though if you need a bit more help deciding what kind of camera you need, you can get a lot more information from our special step-by-step guide: What camera should I buy?

On the other hand, you may already have a clear idea of the kind of camera you want, in which case you could go straight to one of our more specific camera buying guides

  • Best bridge camera
  • Best travel camera
  • Best high-end compact
  • Best DSLR
  • Best DSLR for beginners
  • Best full frame DSLR
  • Best CSC/mirrorless camera
  • Best CSC for beginners

New and exciting cameras are coming out all the time, of course, and

Cityscape Photography Tips

Capturing Night Signs

When photographing signs at night, one of the most important factors is light metering. The combination of a bright sign and a dark background can confuse the camera, leaving you with an under or over exposed image. You need an accurate metering mode that you can control, so choose spot metering and choose a mid toned area for a balanced shot (in this case the red lettering). Place your camera on a sturdy tripod to avoid camera shake and turn off the flash if you are too close to the sign.

Stunning Cityscapes

To take a photograph of a cityscape once the evening has come, find a spot that shows off all the buildings and office lights that are lit. Place the camera on a tripod, and turn the mode dial to AV (aperture priority) mode; we want f/8 and upwards for a greater depth of field. Use your camera’s self-timer or a cable release to take the photo with absolutely no blurring. The best time for this kind of shot is during the two “golden hours” which are the first hour after sunrise and

What is a DSLR (Digital SLR)

DSLR stands for “Digital Single Lens Reflex”. In simple language, DSLR is a digital camera that uses mirrors to direct light from the lens to the viewfinder, which is a hole on the back of the camera that you look through to see what you are taking a picture of.

1) What do DSLR cameras consist of?

Take a look at the following image of an SLR cross section (image courtesy of Wikipedia)

  1. Lens
  2. Reflex mirror
  3. Shutter
  4. Image sensor
  5. Matte focusing screen
  6. Condenser lens
  7. Pentaprism
  8. Eyepiece/Viewfinder

2) How do DSLR cameras work?

When you look through the viewfinder on the back of the camera, whatever you see is exactly what you are going to get in the photograph. The scene that you are taking a picture of passes through the lens in a form of light into a reflex mirror (#2) that sits at a 45 degree angle inside the camera chamber, which then forwards the light vertically to an optical element called a “pentaprism” (#7). The pentaprism then converts the vertical light to horizontal by redirecting the light through two separate mirrors, right into the viewfinder (#8).

When you take a picture, the reflex mirror (#2)

Photoshop CC2015.1.2 What’s New

Photoshop is a primary tool for many photographers. Some photographers prefer Lightroom because it easier to learn. I think Lightroom has limited use and almost everything in Lightroom can be done with more control in Photoshop. The bottom line is that both programs come for one price about $9.95 US\month as subscription to the cloud. A monthly subscription means you don’t have to shell out $700 plus for Photoshop, but it also means you have to pay as long as you use it. The price can go up anytime, but I think if that happens many photographers will search for an alternative. There are free alternatives to Photoshop like GIMP.

I have been teaching Photoshop at local colleges for almost two decades. One of the good things is that now each college classroom will have the latest version of the software. Some colleges would only upgrade the software every few years or use free 30 day download and that made it frustrating when I taught advanced courses.

Photoshop is a primary tool for many photographers. Some photographers prefer Lightroom because it easier to learn. I think Lightroom has limited use and almost everything in Lightroom can be done with more

White Balance

Color Temperature

To understand the concept of White Balance, you need to first understand the concept of color temperature. Color temperature is a characteristic of visible light. It provides a method of describing these characteristics and is measured in Kelvin (K). A light having higher color temperature will have more blue light or larger Kelvin value as compared to lower light, which has a smaller Kelvin value. The following table shows the color temperature of various sources of light.

How does the Light Affect the Color

You must have noticed some photos turn out with an orange/yellow cast if shot under tungsten lighting or a bluish cast if shot under fluorescent lights. This occurs because each source of light possesses a different color temperature. A digital camera can measure the colors in the red, green, and blue light of the spectrum, as reflected to its sensors. In a photo taken under the midday sun there is the whole spectrum of light (which makes up “white” sunlight). Under these conditions, the colors in an image appear nearest to the “true” colors. An image taken under tungsten

Mirrorless vs DSLR

DSLR cameras by design have some inherent flaws and limitations. Part of it has to do with the fact that SLR cameras were initially developed for film. When digital evolved, it was treated just like film and was housed in the same mechanical body. Aside from the circuitry required for a digital sensor and other electronics, new digital film media and the back LCD, the rest of the SLR components did not change. Same mechanical mirror, same pentaprism / optical viewfinder, same phase detection system for autofocus operation. While new technological advances eventually led to extending of features of these cameras (In-camera editing, HDR, GPS, WiFi, etc), DSLRs continued to stay bulky for a couple of reasons. First, the mirror inside DSLR cameras had to be the same in size as the digital sensor, taking up plenty of space. Second, the pentaprism that converts vertical rays to horizontal in the viewfinder also had to match the size of the mirror, making the top portion of DSLRs bulky.

Lastly, manufacturers wanted to keep existing lenses compatible with digital cameras, so that the transition from film to digital was not too costly or too limiting for the consumer. This

Nikon vs Canon vs Sony

copsI have been getting a lot of questions from our readers about whether they should pick a particular camera from Nikon, Canon, Sony, Pentax or some other manufacturer. These inquiries are only increasing over time, so I decided to post an article on what I think about different camera systems and why you should go with a particular brand versus others. Many of the questions are something like “should I go for Nikon D5000 or Canon 1000D” or similar, with readers asking me to tell them why I would recommend or pick a certain brand/type of a camera over another. When it comes to the question of Nikon vs Canon vs Sony, there are lots of heated debates over the Internet, so I wanted to share my personal thought on this subject matter as well.

As you know, I have been mainly writing about Nikon – simply because pretty much all of my gear is from Nikon and it is the system of choice for me. Why don’t I shoot Canon or Sony? Is Nikon superior than these brands? No, not

Great Photo Ops during Spring Migration

The spring migration of birds in North America offers many opportunities for photography. A trip to Point Pelee National Park during the Festival of Birds in early May has become a yearly event for us. Point Pelee is the southernmost point of Canada, reaching into Lake Erie at the same latitude as northern California. This point is along primary bird migration routes and is often described as a critical area for birds migrating northward in the spring. The 50km crossing of Lake Erie can be exhausting and the point offers a place for birds to rest and feed before pursuing their migration. Bird sightings and photography are made easier because leaves are not fully developed at that time of the year and there is a good number of birds moving northward along this narrow point. The warblers are in their breeding (usually more colourful) plumage, making them perfect subjects for photography. While Point Pelee is known as the “Warbler Capital of Canada”, sightings are not limited to warblers. You will also find sparrows, wrens, woodpeckers and thrushes, many of which remain shy and elusive at other times of the year. During the peak of the migration, it is relatively

Field Contributor Benefits

When you become a Level 3 subscriber, a Field Contributor, you will also have access to the Nature Photographer Field Contributors’ Web Site. The Field Contributor’s site contains additional articles, information, and images.

1) Your name will be listed in each issue and on the web site as one of our Field Contributors.

2) You will have a pin number so you can access the Field Contributor web site where you will find articles which are only published on the Field Contributor site.

3) Helen and Marty are available by telephone. In fact, we enjoy talking with you a great deal. We will do our best to answer questions and look forward to discussing article ideas with you.

4) You are invited to submit images and/or articles which will be considered for possible publication in the magazine, in the iPad app, in the PDF sold on this web site, or on this web site.

5) When published you will receive payment. The payment schedule is:Spring and Summer issues — payment will be made in late November- mid December.Fall/Winter issue — payment will be made in April.

“When

Beginning Photography Equipment

Buying photography equipment for the first time is a daunting task. Useful guides exist to help beginners choose a good camera, but few newcomers realize that the camera itself is only the first of many pieces of equipment necessary to create a full setup for photography. In this guide, I will suggest a complete kit — everything from lens cloths to computer monitors — that will provide a beginner with high quality images (and room to grow) for a price of around 2000 US dollars.

Note that this guide is not a comprehensive list of equipment that will work for every type of photographer. As your photography becomes more specialized — portraiture, landscapes, wildlife, or anything else — you will gravitate towards more specialized equipment as well. The recommendations below can be considered an all-purpose starter kit rather than a list tuned to one specific type of photographer.

1) The Camera

The core of photography is a camera, or at least the sensor of a camera. At the moment, one of the biggest debates in the photography world is between two different types of cameras: mirrorless and DSLR cameras. Both have their merits, but a beginning photographer on a tight budget should be