Film vs DSLR camera

There is a strong believe among a section of digital camera users that film is something of the past and should be phased out just as a glorious actor on the final act of his life takes a bow amidst thunderous applause. Unfortunately that swansong can stay and there is no such thing as digital cameras being better than film cameras. They can both have their day and in the right hands can be equally awe inspiring with their results.

Exponents of the digital SLR cameras argue that the advantage of being able to take a few test shots before warming up to the actual task is unparalleled, something that film camera users can never be able to achieve. There is nothing to dispute here as it is indeed a plus point of using DSLR cameras. At the same time DSLR users have also got the advantage of seeing what they are going to get via the live view LCD monitor without having to actually develop the film, then printing it. A mindless amount of time between taking a shot and then waiting for it to come out is thus saved. This is again a big plus point for DSLR users. Another thing that works in favor of DSLR users is being able to control the post production, provided one has shot in RAW. Unlike in film cameras where setting up a film development and printing setup can be expensive, one simply needs a computer and post production software for editing the images and to fine tune them. The inability to do post production himself after shooting using film means that the photographer has to rely on the judgment of the lab where the film is sent. This can often result in heart burns because of improper development of the film resulting in wrong tonal balance and other mishaps.

Film camera photographers argue that the whole process involves more personal level engagement. In fact the inability to see results before they are printed and the fact that one has no way to take a few test shots means one has to be more precise about his calculations when setting up. An exponent of film camera photography will spend additional minutes setting up precise lighting, meter the light, check the color of the light and try and find out as much as he can through the viewfinder before pressing the shutter release. A film camera photographer is often the no-nonsense type. He knows what he wants, prepares for the shot and then leaves the remaining few percentages on a factor called luck.

It is hard work to shoot using film no doubt. For those who have shot using a DSLR all their life, the transition, even if it is a test, can be painful and full of hiccups and blemishes. It can make a photographer understand his shortcomings, many of which are never really exposed because of the technological marvel known as DSLR.

A lot of photographers argue that a DSLR is the best way to go when shooting for magazines, newspapers and online publications. A DSLR can provide a faster TAT when shots taken are required to be published immediately. Sporting events and news coverage are shot mostly using JPEGs and then shared for publication immediately without any post-production. DSLR photographers prefer to use the built-in image processing system on their cameras to create JPEGs. On the other hand film camera photography is often done to facilitate large format printing where DSLRs with 18, 22 or even higher megapixel are often found wanting.

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