Optical Zoom vs. Digital Camera Zoom - Know the Difference

By CanvasChamp TeamJuly, 9 2015

If you happen to be a complete newbie or beginner when it comes to photography, then you might get confused with the many terms used in it. However, in case you are on the verge of buying your own first ever camera, then you should be well acquainted with the definitions in it regarding digital and optical zoom. While we are all aware of what zoom is, we need to understand how the feature really works.

Optical Zoom

Originally, optical zoom was the only zoom type that was available on the film cameras before the start of the digital age. This allows zooming in and out of the subject at hand with the help of a camera lens. With the lens zooming, you are able to change the lens focal length and make the objects appear larger or smaller than they actually are. Optical zoom feature is available in all cameras and has recently started appearing in mobile devices.

Digital Zoom

With the advent of digital cameras, digital zoom came about. While the feature is not the same type of zooming as that found in the optical zoom, the subjects appear closer due to simulation with the help of camera software. Digital zoom can cause the image quality as well as the resolution to reduce. Your photo will thus be blurred, much like with a low megapixel camera.

Digital Zoom vs. Optical Zoom

When it comes to choosing from either of the two, it is always better to choose optical zoom since it is not dependent on resolution or megapixel. The quality of your images will, hence, not be compromised. These two are completely different from total zoom.

However, this does not at all mean that you should focus on buying a camera without the digital zoom facility in it. In fact, you will not be able to find one without this feature. And to be honest, digital zoom is not all that bad. You can use it in sporting events and capture certain action shots. All you have to remember is that you should know when you should use digital zoom. For instance, landscape shots do not require digital zoom since it will always be at a standstill.

Good Camera Zoom

It should not be difficult to choose a camera that meets all your zoom requirements. All you have to do is be aware of the different zoom features and you are good to go. DSLRs are another camera category that has a wide range in lenses. Once you have perfect shots of whatever it is you want to take pictures of, you can use the shots to print them on your canvas and display them beautifully in your homes.