This is an interchangeable lens camera where you see an optical image of what the lens sees in the viewfinder. They do this using a mirror inside the body that reflects the image seen by the lens up into the viewfinder. When you take a picture, the mirror flips up out of the way so […]
Dual Pixel CMOS AF is an autofocus technology developed by Canon that aims to deliver the speed and responsiveness of phase detection autofocus using only the camera sensor and not a separate phase detection sensor. This has many advantages for mirrorless cameras and DSLRs being used in live view mode. Effectively, the photosites on Canon’s […]
Flash duration is the length of time a flash is generating light. The flash duration is typically very short, often between 1/500sec and 1/1000sec, but often even faster than that.
A feature on some cameras which expands the range of tones the sensor can capture. It works by using a higher baseline ISO setting but then holding back the ISO amplification for brighter areas. The darker areas of the picture are well exposed but the camera holds on to the highlight detail too.
This is the brightness range the camera can capture before starting to lose detail in bright areas (like the sky) and dense, dark shadows. Generally, the larger the camera’s sensor, the better its dynamic range. RAW files capture a slightly wider dynamic range than JPEGs.
RAW conversion software which not only produces very high levels of image quality but automatically corrects lens aberrations for a large number of commercially available camera and lens combinations. See also: DxO Optics Pro 11 review
This is Nikon’s name for its APS-C format DSLRs. Some Nikon lenses are designed specifically for these smaller format models, and they include ‘DX’ in the lens name to signify that the can’t be used on the full frame models (well, they can, but only in a ‘DX crop’ mode.
A system offered with Nikon DSLRs for dealing with dust spots on the sensor. You take a reference shot of a white card which highlights any dust spots, and then Nikon image-editing software can use this to target dust spots on your photos and process them out.
A filter in Color Efex Pro, part of the Nik Collection, which combines a soft-focus ‘glow’ effect with a colour tone. It can prove useful for some effects, but it’s not a filter you’d use every day.
An online storage system for your files and photos. You copy photos to a Dropbox folder on your computer and they are synchronised with the online Dropbox servers so that you can access them from anywhere. You can get a free account with a small amount of storage, but it’s essentially a subscription-based service.
Any remote control flying craft that can carry a camera. The drones available to the public are helicopter-style ‘multi-rotor’ devices – typically ‘quadcopters’ rather than the aircraft used by the military. The rotors are controlled by a central computer for easier flight controls.
This controls what happens when you press the shutter release. In regular single-shot mode the camera takes a single photo. In continuous mode, it keeps taking pictures for as long as you hold down the shutter button. You’ll also find a self-timer mode and other options.
Classic black and white technique where certain areas of a print are held back (dodged) under the enlarger to make them lighter and others are given extra exposure (burning in) to make them darker. The terms are still used to describe the way images can be improved digitally.
This is a handy free tool you can download from the Adobe website for converting digital camera RAW files into Adobe’s generic DNG format. It’s useful if you have a new camera but an older version of Photoshop, Elements or Lightroom that won’t open its RAW files.
Exposure adjustment tool offered in some Nikon software for brightening the darkest parts of a picture without altering the rest. It’s a less advanced version of the Active D-Lighting system built into Nikon cameras. Regular D-Lighting just brightens the shadows – it’s too late to adjust the exposure at the software stage.
Software correction carried out either in the camera during image processing or later on in software to correct bowed edges caused by lens distortion.
An optical effect in some lenses where straight lines come out slightly bowed. You often see ‘barrel distortion’ with wideangle lenses or ‘pincushion distortion’ with telephoto lenses at their longest zoom setting. More expensive lenses tend to have less distortion but, generally, the longer the lens’s zoom range the more likely you are to see […]
A small knob or lever next to the viewfinder which you use to adjust the focus of the eyepiece to match your own vision. The information in the viewfinder should appear sharp without you having to strain to bring it into focus.
Zoom function that comes from blowing up the central part of a digital image, not by increasing the magnification of the lens. Digital zooms produce lower resolution and less detail, despite what the makers say.
Canon’s brand name for the image processors in its digital cameras. These take the raw data captured by the sensor process it into image files as well as handling many of the camera’s internal functions. Other makers have their own brands of processor.