Sunday, April 22, 2007

Digital or Film - Which Should You Buy? Part - 1

If you are new to photography, the first thing you need is a camera, and the first thing you need to decide about it is whether to buy a film or digital camera. For most people now, a digital camera is probably a better choice, and many more are now being sold than film cameras, but film can still be best for some. To help you make up your mind, here are some of the major issues:

Camera Costs

Film cameras are generally relatively cheap so long as you only want a simple camera.
Digital cameras of similar quality may cost several times as much as film cameras.

Media Cost

Films are fairly cheap, but if you take many pictures the costs soon mount up.
Digital memory cards cost more than a film, but are almost infinitely reusable

Processing & Printing Costs

Film processing can be very cheap if you use bargain services that process film and print every picture.

But you get prints of any failures along with the good shots.

Digital allows you to review pictures before printing and delete any not needed. Any processing on your computer cost you nothing and cheap printing services are available - or you can print your own.


Film takes hours or days before you see your picture and it may take longer for you to finish a roll of film.

Digital allows you to see your pictures immediately and to share them with others as you take them or rapidly by e-mail or web.


Film is fine if you don't have a computer, and computer skills are not essential. If you computer and scanner you can scan your images.

Digital makes a computer almost essential, and you need basic computer skills to download, process and share your images.


Film cameras generally shoot large numbers of films on a single battery.
Digital cameras have short battery life, though they are generally rechargeable.

Away From Home

Film only needs films and camera. Processing is available in most places around the world.
Digital cameras need battery charger and/or spare batteries, can be difficult in remote places. Need to travel with a storage device (or notebook computer) for storage of many pictures and processing.


Film has high quality, and even cheap cameras can produce reasonable large prints
Digital quality depends on camera quality, and relatively expensive cameras are needed to match film.

Overall costsMost of the costs of taking pictures with a digital camera come 'up front' when you buy the camera (and any other equipment you need.) With film, the camera comes relatively cheap, but you 'pay as you go' for film and processing.

If you only take a few rolls of film a year, then film is going to work out cheaper for you, while if you take a lot, digital will save you money.

ConclusionIf you don't have a computer (or one you can use whenever you want) then you will find it difficult to get the most out of a digital camera, and would probably be better staying with film. But for most of us, unless we have special needs (see below), digital is best.

Perhaps even more importantly, digital photography is quite simply more fun. Even if you don't take that many pictures now, if you buy a digital camera you will surely find yourself taking many more, and also taking better pictures.

1 comment:

lokeshhk1 said...

thanks for you information
once again my heart felt thanks :)

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