7 reasons why you still might want a real camera

When you want to take a quick photo, chances are you reach for your smartphone instead of an actual, standalone camera. But it is not necessarily always the case. Real cameras still have a lot of advantages over phones. That’s why you’ll want to keep a camera handy and not just rely on the limited capabilities of your smartphone.

1. Image Quality
Sure, smartphone cameras have improved over the years, but so have standalone cameras. You don’t need to spend big bucks to get a good camera that takes high-quality images.

Megapixels aren’t everything, but they’re an easy place to start when comparing cameras. For example, the Phone X has a 12-megapixel camera, while one of Kim’s favorites, the Nikon D3300, comes in at 24.2-megapixel. This can be especially important if you plan to make large prints for display.

2. Better Photos in Low Light
Smartphone cameras are getting better at handling low-light situations, whether it’s a romantic anniversary dinner at a candlelit restaurant or a camping trip with nothing but a fire to light up your evening.

But low light is still a notable weakness for most phones, which also falls in the flash department. A good standalone camera can handle the rigors of dark conditions and offer a better flash experience for those times when you need to shed a little light on your subject.

3. Power of Zoom
The slimness of the smartphone means you can’t fit a large optical zoom lens into the design. This is where a “superzoom” camera really wins the day.

These cameras have optical zooms that can get you 30 or 60 times closer to your subject. Think of taking a picture of a rare bird in a tree with your smartphone and zooming in with a real camera. A superzoom brings your photos closer to the action in a way a smartphone can’t. With DSLR cameras, you can change the lens and add a bigger zoom to it if needed.

4. Control
When you look at a digital SLR camera, you’ll see dials, buttons, and elaborate layers of menus on-screen. You can set the camera to handle tasks automatically, or you can control all those details to achieve the look you want. This is especially useful when you are photographing subjects in challenging lighting conditions or are looking to achieve a certain artistic effect. You won’t get the kind of power over your images with a regular smartphone camera.

5. Snap More Photos

Most of us are constantly scrambling to save space on our smartphones and photos are a big culprit when it comes to storage. With a standalone camera, you can load it up with a huge memory card and get away without worrying about transferring your photos to the cloud or bumping up against storage-space warnings. So go ahead and take 500 pictures and shoot some videos at your next birthday party. You have plenty of space.

6. Look Out the Window
It can be challenging to take photos with your smartphone when light is bouncing off the display, but you can still pick up a standalone camera that has a viewfinder window. Like in the days before cameras, you hold it up and look through the viewfinder to frame your shots. This is perfect for those who struggle with digital display glare. Just remember that not all digital cameras have viewfinders, so look for this feature if it’s important to you.

7. More Shopping Options
When it comes to standalone cameras, you can find the perfect camera for your needs. traveling light? Choose a compact point-and-shoot that will slide into your jacket pocket.

Getting involved in photography as a serious hobby? A full-size digital SLR will give you control over everything from shutter speed to aperture and will also allow you to switch different lenses. Going out on adventure? Look for a sturdy, waterproof camera that can capture extreme conditions and keep your smartphone out of the way and safe from damage.

Updated: December 14, 2021 — 11:43 am

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