A digital camera (or digicam for short) is a
camera that takes video or still photographs,
or both, digitally by recording images via an
electronic image sensor.
Front and back of a Canon PowerShot A95.
Many compact digital still cameras can re-
cord sound and moving video as well as still
photographs. In the Western market, digital
cameras outsell their 35 mm film counter-
Digital cameras can do things film camer-
as cannot: displaying images on a screen im-
mediately after they are recorded, storing
images on a single small
memory device, recording video with sound,
and deleting images to free storage space.
Digital cameras are incorporated into
many devices ranging from PDAs and mobile
phones (called camera phones) to vehicles.
The Hubble Space Telescope and other astro-
nomical devices are essentially specialised di-
Compact digital cameras
Compact cameras are designed to be small
and portable and are particularly suitable for
casual and "snapshot" use, thus are also
called point-and-shoot camera. The smallest,
generally less than 20 mm thick, are de-
scribed as subcompacts or "ultra-compacts".
Compact cameras are usually designed to be
easy to use, sacrificing advanced features
and picture quality for compactness and sim-
plicity; images can usually only be stored us-
ing lossy compression (JPEG). Most have a
built-in flash usually of low power, sufficient
for nearby subjects. Live preview is almost al-
ways used to frame the photo. They may have
limited motion picture capability. Compacts
often have macro capability, but if they have
zoom capability the range is usually less than
for bridge and DSLR cameras. They have a
greater depth of field, allowing objects within
a large range of distances from the camera to
be in sharp focus.
Bridge or SLR-like cameras are higher-end
digital cameras that physically resemble
DSLRs and share with them some advanced
features, but share with compacts the fram-
ing of the photo using live preview and small