Guide to Different Types of CamerasDigital cameras come in all shapes and sizes, but they all do the same thing: capture photos. However, just because they all serve the same basic function doesn’t mean that digital cameras are all the same. There is a dizzying array of different types of digital cameras from which to choose. Even if you have never purchased a camera before, it’s not particularly difficult to understand the different types available and choose one that suits your personal needs. Here is everything you need to know about the various types of digital cameras currently available on the market, some of the more common camera types, what they are used for, and what features you should look out for when making your purchase.

Types of Cameras and Their Advantages

Choosing the best camera can be a daunting task. There are so many brands, models, and features to choose from. The first step is to decide what type of camera you want: DSLR or point-and-shoot for instance? From there, it’s about finding the right fit for your needs and price point.

Compact digital cameras: Compact digital cameras are a higher quality version of point-and-shoot cameras. They typically have manual settings, often a zoom lens, and always include photo editing software.

Point-and-shoot: Point-and-shoots can be compared to disposable cameras in the sense that they are always ready to take a photo and can be taken anywhere. They are light-weight and have lower quality photos and video. Unlike a DSLR, these cameras typically have no manual settings and only include a few different lenses.

DSLR: A DSLR camera is a general term for a digital single-lens reflex camera that uses interchangeable lenses. It is a type of professional grade camera and usually has manual settings, higher-quality photos and video, interchangeable lenses, and better shutter speed/aperture performance. These cameras are typically heavier and bulkier than point-and-shoot cameras. Digital SLR cameras are the type of camera that you would use for professional photography.

Mirrorless cameras: Mirrorless cameras are a hybrid of a DSLR and point-and-shoot cameras. These cameras typically have all the manual settings that you would expect with a DSLR and some of the benefits of a point-and shoot camera, such as great quality photos, but they also come with a tripod mount.

Compact Digital Cameras

Compact digital cameras are some of the most popular and widely used types of digital cameras. They are characterized by their small, compact design that makes them easy to carry around and store. These types of cameras are best suited to casual photography, such as documenting a vacation or taking pictures of your family and friends. Compact digital cameras are the cheapest type of camera on the market, making them a great choice for beginners who are just getting into photography. Some of the most common features of compact digital cameras include automatic exposure, automatic shutter speed, and automatic ISO. These features make it easy for beginners to take quality photographs without having to adjust any settings. Compact digital cameras are also generally easy to use, making them a great choice for children and those who are new to photography. Their small design also makes them great for travel, allowing you to easily store the camera in your suitcase. Some compact digital cameras have zoom features that make them useful for capturing close-up photographs of wildlife and nature. Compact digital cameras have a fixed lens, meaning that you cannot remove or replace the lens. This is generally not a problem, as most compact digital cameras have a zoom lens that enables you to get close-up photos from a distance. Compact digital cameras typically feature lower-quality sensors than other types of digital cameras. This is often not a problem for casual photography, but if you plan on printing your photographs or using them to create prints, you may notice a drop in quality.

Point-and-Shoot Cameras

Point-and-shoot cameras are another common type of digital camera. As the name suggests, you simply point and shoot with these cameras, making them very easy to use. These cameras are great for beginners who are interested in photography but feel overwhelmed by the number of settings and controls that come with other types of digital cameras. One of the biggest differences between compact digital cameras and point-and-shoot cameras is that point-and-shoot cameras typically have a viewfinder. This allows you to view exactly what the camera sees. More advanced point-and-shoot cameras have zoom features that allow you to get close-up photos from a distance. While these cameras have fewer controls than compact digital cameras, they are still much more advanced than basic “disposable” film cameras. One of the major drawbacks of point-and-shoot cameras is that they do not allow you to adjust any of the settings. Since they are designed specifically for beginners, they do not allow you to change any of the exposure settings. This means that the camera will decide the length of time the shutter is open, the aperture, and the ISO setting. While this is great for beginners, it’s not very useful for those who want more control over the photography process.

DSLR Cameras

If you are interested in photography as a hobby, then you may want to consider purchasing a DSLR camera. DSLR cameras feature a larger sensor than compact digital cameras and point-and-shoot cameras - a feature that allows for greater detail and less noise in the photograph. Most DSLR cameras also have interchangeable lenses that allow you to customize the type of photograph you can take. DSLR cameras are best suited to photographers who want to take their hobby more seriously and produce high-quality images. However, they are not easy to use and are not recommended for beginners. DSLR cameras have a lot of manual settings that allow you to control virtually every aspect of the photography process. Since they are designed for more advanced users, these cameras have a plethora of settings that allow you to customize almost everything. While this is useful for experienced photographers, it can be frustrating for beginners who don’t know how to adjust the settings, though most will have some sort of auto setting that will allow use without getting into too many settings. DSLR cameras also feature a larger sensor, which makes them larger and bulkier than other types of cameras. This makes them not only difficult to store but also uncomfortable to carry around.

Mirrorless Cameras

Mirrorless cameras are a relatively new type of camera that features a larger sensor than compact digital cameras and point-and-shoot cameras. They are designed to be smaller and lighter than DSLR cameras while still retaining the larger sensor. This makes them the best option for photographers who want the benefits of a larger sensor but prefer a lighter camera. While mirrorless cameras are generally very similar to DSLR cameras, they do have a couple of advantages. First, they are much smaller than DSLR cameras, making them more comfortable to carry around. Second, they are also generally cheaper than DSLR cameras. This makes them a great option for photographers who want the high-quality image of a DSLR camera but don’t want to deal with the bulkiness and high cost. One of the biggest drawbacks of mirrorless cameras is that they don’t tend to have as many lenses available as DSLRs although this is changing as they develop. This means that you may have a limited selection when choosing different types of lenses for your camera. Mirrorless cameras are also generally more expensive than compact digital cameras and point-and-shoot cameras.

Video Camera vs. Still Camera

Most people think of camcorders as video cameras, but many modern camcorders can also take high-quality photographs. However, if you are looking for a camera that is primarily designed for still photography, then you need to purchase a digital still camera. Digital still cameras are designed specifically for still photography and don’t have any video features. They are similar to other types of digital cameras but often have fewer manual controls. Since they are designed to be simple, they are not recommended for professional photographers who need a lot of control over their photos. The biggest difference between a video camera and a still camera is that video cameras take video. This means that they don’t take still photographs; however, there are also differences in the design of the camera that make it more suitable for video than for still photography. For example, video cameras often feature larger sensors and a wider aperture than still cameras, making them better at recording high-quality video in low light.


The best camera for you will depend on your needs and skill level. If you are interested in photography but feel overwhelmed by all of the different types of cameras, you can use this article as a guide. The most important thing is to understand what you want to achieve with your photography and choose a camera that will help you achieve those goals.