Point and shoot cameras

I would venture to say that the vast majority of people who take pictures use a simple point and shoot cameras. I use the term “simple point and shoot” a little loosely because the new digital cameras aren’t so simple anymore. Over the years we have purchased several of the Sony digital cameras and they have served us very well. The zoom features aren’t very powerful so the cameras incorporate a digital zoom feature trying to get closer shots but the digital zooms usually results in grainy pictures. The variable settings on those cameras are an attempt to provide you with the ability to take pictures using stop action, close ups and in various lighting conditions. It is certainly better than the older cameras with no variable settings that were truly point and shoot.

The new digital SLR cameras also have the variable setttings as well as the manual settings. For those who buy the SLR camera but don’t wish to learn all the features of the camera, the variable settings can be used with some degree of success. When you select one of the variable settings, the camera will make the decision as to the aperture and shutter speed speed for that particular setting. For instance, if you select the action setting, the camera will select a fast shutter speed and an appropriate aperture setting. The variable settings give you a degree of control that you don’t get by using only the auto setting. If you are interested as I am in taking better pictures and using special effects, then it is a good idea to read your user manual and get familiar with your camera.

The following three pictures were taken at the Houston Airshow this past year. I was using the Nikon D60 with the 200mm telephoto lens. I selected the action setting on the variable dial of the camera. The camera set the shutter speed to 1/1000 sec and the aperture to f/5.6. These pictures came out pretty good. Notice that the fast shutter speed appeared to stop the fast turning propellers on the P51 Mustangs. Notice that the fast shutter speed caught a good picture of the jet exhaust pattern from the F15 fighter. If you had been using the auto setting, you probably wouldn’t have gotten these effects.


P51 Mustangs



Blue Angels

Blue Angels


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