Digital camera

From ArticleWorld

A digital camera is an electronic device that captures images in digital form.

Digital cameras today are multifunctional, with capabilities of capturing still images, videos and audio. Common formats in digital camera for still images include DCF, EXIF, JPEG, RAW and TIFF. Movies are stored in AVI, MPEG, MOV and WMV formats.



The first digital camera, made by Steven Sasson in the 1970s, weighed almost 4 kg and was as big as a toaster. It could take a monochrome still image on a digital cassette tape with a resolution of 0.01 megapixels.

The first commercial filmless camera was the Mavica, marketed by Sony in 1981. It used was based on television technology due to which the image quality was inferior. Magnetic disks were used for storage.

Digital cameras became popular among photographers, both amateurs and professionals, in the 1990s. They soon began to replace conventional cameras in many areas.

Digital video cameras

There are three types of digital video cameras:

  • Professional video cameras: These are used in TV and movie production. Professional video cameras usually have multiple image sensors, one for each colour, to improve resolution and colour. These cameras are not usually equipped with built-in VCRs or microphones.
  • Camcorders: Camcorders, which combine a camera and VCR in a single unit, are preferred by amateur photographers. Many models come with microphones and LCD screens.
  • Webcams: These are digital cameras used in computers for internet video conferencing.

Some advanced models feature sound recording using built-in microphones, zoom and even tracking abilities.


For some digital camera models, media such as floppies or memory sticks are needed to transfer data to computers. Many digital cameras these days connect directly to computers through serial or USB ports, the latter one being more common. Some connect through cables such as FireWire. Newer and expensive models feature wireless connectivity over Wi-Fi computer networks.

Digital cameras may also connect directly to televisions or VCRs. Autonomous digital cameras can work without computers by sending output directly to printers.


Mobile phones and PDAs with integrated digital cameras are becoming increasingly common these days. In fact, such devices are more common than standalone digital cameras.