What is a DSLR Camera?

What is a DSLR Camera

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Professional photographers all around the world love to use the standardized version of the camera, which is called a DSLR camera. There are various features, options, and accessories that allow them to take the high-quality image and replicate the real-life event (in most cases, better than real).

Almost everyone might have seen, used, or heard about the DSLR camera. Readout more to know what this product is, its history, and how it is changing the lives of people worldwide.

DSLR Camera

Digital Single Lens Reflex or DSLR is the name of the camera, which explains the process and function of the product in these four letters.

D for Digital

It means that there is a digital sensor that captures the light coming from the environment or image you want to capture. This digital sensor is fixed and equipped with extended capabilities that can store a wide range of light patterns and colors from the environment. The digital sensor is the most robust hardware amongst the primary hardware of the DSLR camera. The digital sensor enables the product to provide you with remarkable results and performance in every click you made using a DSLR camera.

SL for Single lens

Various other models of cameras use a different amount of lenses for different operations while taking the photo. A DSLR camera uses the same single lenses for all the various operations different lenses perform in rangefinder and twin-lens-reflex structures. The single lens in a DSLR camera allows you to frame and focus your choice object with the single lens and afterwards take the picture using the particular piece.

R for Reflex

It is a system inside the camera that splits the image and directs it to the optical viewfinder. This technology allows you to see in real-time what would the image look like after capturing. You can also adjust the background and choose the right amount of texture you need from the background.

The main difference between an SLR and a DSLR camera is that the former uses film to capture images. In contrast, the latter uses digital technology to capture high-quality images that can be used anywhere you want.

DSLR Camera Mechanism

There are two main parts of every DSLR. The first one is a lens that you to change and replace according to the photographer’s demand and choice, and the next one is the body where all the magic takes place. Understanding the mechanism of a DSLR camera is not that much difficult, and you don’t need to enroll in a full-time degree program to have a better understanding.

To grasp the idea of the device’s work and operation, first, to get the hang of the light how it travels inside the structure and offers you stunning results every time.


First, all light enters the structure through the lens; this part is responsible for shaping the light, and it will allow the density of the light as to which thing you want it to focus. The background or the areas that are not in the focus of the lens will not have a higher amount of rays and will not impact the reflex mirror.


The light coming from the lens during manual or autofocus doesn’t create any impact on the digital sensor. As the autofocus increases or decreases the amount of light coming inside the structure, the whole light will be directed to the mirror that will reflect the light to pentaprism that will make you see everything coming in the lens from the viewfinder.

This method is the hallmark of the DSLR camera that shows you the exact picture in real-time as what you are going to capture. This technology enables you to change the background setting or frame the image according to your choice. You get the chance to choose the width of the background you want to capture. Manual and autofocus allow you to change the ratio; you can also move backward or forward to get the desired background in your click.

Once you have gotten the desired moment in time and all the features have made you choose the amount and save it digitally on the camera, the shutter button will take the photo. But when you press the shutter button, the whole mechanism, which was showing you the real-time image of the scene, will turn over, and you will have a blackout in the viewfinder. This blackout reveals that the mirror was showing you the preview of the picture before capturing it.


When the pentaprism or the pentamirror flips out, all the light coming from the lens will be directed to the digital sensor. The digital sensors have specific spots and areas that store the light, and tiny particles called photons create the digital form of an image on the memory of the camera. There is a shutter blocking the digital sensor from getting any reflection from the pentamirror before it flips out. When you press the shutter button, the pentagrams flips down, and the shutter will become wide open, allowing all the light from the lenses to store on the digital lens. The suttee will remain open for a specific moment, and this speed is called shutter speed.

Do you need a DSLR?

There are various types of cameras available in the market, but the sturdiest construction and the tested structure worldwide allow you to use the camera as you please. The SLR cameras have been changing the lives of people for the past century. And the use of the digital sensor in the SLR camera has stretched the performance and horizon of possibilities for this camera.

The DSLR camera has various advantages over the other types of cameras. The extra space available on the structure allows the manufacturers to add more buttons and incorporate more features. The pentaprism or pentamirror inside the structure allows you to see what you are capturing from the viewfinder.

You can see what you are capturing in real-time and take measures to reduce noise from the environment. The enhanced structure and innovative sensors allow you to capture pictures in high resolution. The 4k resolution video capturing makes you say wow every time you use it for recording videos.

The DSLR cameras, along with ISO, helps you capture pictures in low light, and the higher frame rate lets you choose the picture of your choice even in the volatile environment. The autofocus and robust manual focus technology make these cameras the best choice for photographers worldwide.

There are various models and brands available in the market that offer people the capability to use them without prior training. Various models offer robust performance and breathtaking pictures, even for beginners. High-quality models with powerful lenses make them a perfect tool for professional photographers to stretch their limits and go for innovative and out-of-the-box creativity in their routines.

Interested in Learning about Mirrorless Cameras as well? Check out our complete guide on “what is a mirrorless camera“?


Who can use a DSLR camera?

You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to learn how to use a DSLR camera. However, various professional-level cameras are difficult to use because of handing the combination of various features and options to get better quality images. There are various entry-level and intermediate-level cameras that do all the magic by themselves, and all you have to do is learn something about the important features and get the things done. Various models and features available in different DSLR cameras make them ready to use for people with diverse backgrounds and needs.

Following is the list of the people and professions who are getting maximum benefits out of the products:

Industrial photographers

The industrial photographers associated with marketing and advertising have to provide more to the eye than most of the digital cameras offer. The wide range of lenses and ratio with robust features allows the industrial photographers to get maximum out of the product in the picture. Enhanced details allow them to make the right kind of impact they covet from the marketing efforts.

Various feature san options allow photographers to extend the limits of photography and offer unique and mind-wobbling clicks that will stun the viewers and leave a lasting impression.

The fashion industry is nothing without high-quality images and clicks that provide voluptuous structures and eye-catching details. Fashion photographers have to provide the right amount of glare and focus to the click and minims the noise in the background. The high-tech sensors allow fashion photographers to reduce the image’s noise and get the right impact from every click to make people fall in love with the clothes.

Event photographers

National and international events of the organizations and companies require them to record the important details in the event. The DSLR camera allows life-like images that provide you with details in the background and emotions on the face with the minutest detail you can imagine. Marriage ceremony also lies in the same category. The wedding photographers also use DSLR cameras with accessories to give you lasting memories of the most important day of your life. All the happiness and fervor in the air come in the images when you hire a professional photographer with DSLR cameras.

Sports and wildlife photographers

There is one thing common in sports and wildlife photography: (not hunt for the prey) the high-speed motion and sudden movement of the subject in the frame. The DSLR cameras allow you to capture the various movements of the subject of your choice in the volatile environment.

When you want to capture the moment in sports, you cannot get too close in the field because of the obvious reasons, of course. You need robust lenses that allow you to capture lifelike images from a great distance without compromising the image quality.

The wild doesn’t allow you to roam about the way you please in the presence of ferocious animals. The DSLR camera lenses and features allow you to capture the images from a long distance without the fear of low light and noise in the image.

Photography students and beginners

Last but not least are the beginners and photography students who want to increase their skills and move to an intermediate and professional level. Various DSLR cameras allow the user to choose from the predefined settings and take the image in a particular environment. You don’t have to worry about manually focusing the subject and choosing the ISO to match the light and use various other features to get an award-winning photo.

These DSLR cameras for beginners and intermediate-level photographers offer great maneuverability and ease of use to photography enthusiasts. With the help of predefined features, beginners can capture great images by understanding the features and options from the manual and some tips online.

History of DSLR camera

The forefather of the DSLR is the traditional camera which was introduced back in 1888. George Eastman was crowned as the proud creator of Kodak, the first camera in 1888. He introduced paper films in 1885 that allowed him to make a camera and offer it for sale three years later. Since then, the cameras have witnessed various technological advancements, and the most significant change is the size and picture quality. In the recent few decades, cameras and photography have witnessed a dramatic turn thanks to the Digital Single Reflex Cameras invention.

The first DSLR camera was introduced 98 years after the sale of the first traditional camera. Nikon can be crowned as the proud creator of the first Digital Single Reflux camera in 1986 at Photokina. The first DSLR camera was offered for sale two years later, in 1988, the very year the first conventional camera was launched.

Kodak Microelectronics Technology Division came up with the 1.3 MP CCD image sensor that was able to capture a great quality image of that time with the help of more than 1 million pixels. In 1987 Canon F-1 film SLR body was incorporated with this image sensor to make the most robust camera.

This was the breakthrough in the DSLR industry and paved the way for the robust and revolutionized DSLR camera of the present time. The devices used a tethered hard drive to get hold of all the images, and the good quality pictures were processed later ad histogram feedback was rendered to the users.

The US government utilized the technology, and all the later inventions and superior models were also in the use of the government for some obvious purposes. It was 1991 when the technology was offered to the people, and a commercial-scale production from Nikon allowed people to buy a DSLR camera for their professional or personal use.

In 1995, Fujifilm and Nikon collaborated to create the most robust forms of cameras that provided remarkable results to the users. These cameras ruled the industry with various models, and the final model, E3S, was introduced to the general public in the last month of 1999.

Various manufacturers enter the Single lens Reflux camera. The most significant names to enter the industry at that time are as follow:

  • Canon
  • Kodak
  • Fujifilm
  • Panasonic
  • Samsung
  • Sigma
  • Sony
  • Minolta
  • Pentax
  • Olympus

At the beginning of 2000, the FinePix S1 Pro by Fujifilm became the hallmark of the industry. And later, at the end of the next year, in 2001, Canon came up with another model that had an astonishing 4.1 megapixel; the model was named EOS-1D.

There were various improvements in the models, and many manufacturers came up with a high-quality camera having increased specification. It didn’t make much difference until the Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D was launched with in-body image stabilization. This technology remained the standard for all of the further products.

Another breakthrough rattled the DSLR industry when Nikon released D90 in 2008. This camera was capable of recording videos, and after this model, all the other manufacturers also incorporated their models to record live videos.

During the past 12 years, features like memory cards, external flash, enhanced lenses, and external triggers made things easy for photographers. And the increase in megapixels, image sensors, and various other features enhanced the horizon to the whole new universe.


Latest improvements in DSLR cameras

Over the years, DSLR cameras have seen various improvements in features and technology. Following is the list of the latest improvements and future improvements which you will witness in the present and models about to launch in the near future:


For the past few years, people have been complaining about the sizes of DSLR cameras. The wide and bulky structure makes them easy to handle and use for people. The advancements in technology have allowed manufacturers to reduce DSLR cameras’ sizes and make them compact and easy to use. The high-quality sensor was made in wider and bigger dimensions. But the technological inventions have allowed manufacturers to reduce the size of the sensors and increase their power without compromising performance and efficiency. The latest example of Canon EOS Rebel SL1 is a lightweight, compatible, and most powerful DSL camera.

More megapixels

Currently, there are DSLR cameras with a 40 to 50-megapixel range available in the market. And with the help of Zeiss lenses, photographers can capture the pictures in 60-megapixel settings. The manufacturers have stated that they will be offering the cameras with 60 megapixels to allow the users and professional photographers to get more details in their pictures with stunning results within no time. Everyone will get the cameras that will translate their message and feel while taking the picture most accurately and stunningly.

Advanced sensor technology

Currently, the DSLR camera manufacturers provide advanced sensors that offer photographers to take high-quality photos even in low light. When you increase the ISO, you don’t have to worry about the grains, thanks to the high-quality, innovative sensors that help you capture high-speed photos without grains. Sensors are getting more advanced. In upcoming months, you will get lightweight and compact cameras that will offer you a robust quality picture and ease of use without compromising your favorite features and function in the DSLR camera.

Enhanced frame rate

The higher frame rate helps to take high-speed pictures with maximum details and without any blur. Sports photography has gaining more ground in a few years, and the demand for DSLR cameras with high-speed capturing is increasing day by day. The enhanced frame rate makes it possible for the sports photographer to capture the right moment in time with maximum details and the results come in the form of a high-quality picture without any blur. Photographers love DSLR cameras’ performance that allows them to capture high-speed motion, excitement, and enthusiasm all at the same time without compromising picture quality.

Stills capturing from video

Capturing a still frame from a video was the most difficult and painstaking task. You have to pause the video at the right time is difficult enough, but when you used to take a picture of that moment from the video, the results were an out-of-focus low-quality picture that was enough to ruin the moment. But manufacturers have made cameras that can capture the still from the video without comprising the quality and detail. You get the picture with almost the same quality as you could have achieved by using still photography.

EOS-1DC from Canon is the perfect solution when you want to get a still picture from the video. The camera offers robust performance and maximum quality of the picture when you try to get the still picture from a video. The manufacturers are enhancing the quality and performance of their DSLR cameras to make things easy for all the photographers when capturing a photo from the video.

Enhanced autofocus

When you are out in the wild or on the brim of the paly ground, the focus is crucial for any photographer out there in the field. A delay for even a second will, most of the time, make everything change before the camera lens. The subject will have gone to the entire new setting if you try to use a delayed focus for capturing fast-moving objects.

DSLR cameras have robust autofocus that allows you to capture high-quality pictures of fast-moving objects without suffering from blur as the autofocus quickly considers the subject and allows you to get high-quality clicks in volatile backgrounds. You also get a manual focus feature while using lenses. The rim maneuver allows you to focus any object of your choice from a diverse panorama without getting blur on the subject of your choice.

Lens Versatility

The different lens offers different quality and types of images for the photographers. DSLR cameras offer various attachments in the lens for various purposes and types of images professional and non-professional photographers would want. The dedicated macro lens allows you to click the life-size portrait images and pictures with 1:1 magnification. Various lenses allow you to capture distant images with the ultimate detail and depth, regardless of the distance between the object and the photographer. Wildlife photographers use these lenses for sitting in a safe place at a safe distance without compromising the image’s quality.

Lower Battery Consumption

Most of the digital cameras keep using the battery while they are asleep. This phenomenon decreases battery life, and you get less time with the device. On the other hand, the DSLR camera allows you to consume battery when asleep and to do nothing. The current DSLR camera models come with a feature that allows them to use the same amount of battery as a digital watch while staying asleep. And when you are using DSLR cameras, only those features consume batteries in use during the process. This way, the photographers get high-quality images and extended battery life.

Wrapping up

Cameras have been the parts of our lives for more than a century. From the inception of the first camera, 132 years have passed, and this time has witnessed remarkable breakthroughs in the structure and features of the cameras. These products have seen a huge transition from bulky human-sized structures to handheld devices. The most innovative models in this category are Digital Single Lens Reflex cameras. These models have much more to offer for the professionals to intermediate and entry-level photographers. These cameras have been a dream product for photographers all around the world. It doesn’t matter whether you are interested in cameras or not. Still, surely, you might have seen and heard a DSLR camera around you in the hands of people taking pictures in the event or recording high-quality videos.

These robust devices have offered the most wonderful possibilities for photographers all around the globe. DSLR cameras with viewfinders show you the realties image you will capture so you can adjust the picture accordingly. The digital sensors, robust lenses, and sturdy structure teams create the perfect combo for awesome photos. The enhanced features, ISO, and increased megapixels provide you with the most astonishing results even in the low light.


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