Tips on Using a Camera Zoom

Tips on Using a Camera Zoom

It is important to have a zoom lens in order to take good photos at events such as a live concert, a graduation ceremony or a sightseeing tour. You need to use the various zoom options on your camera to bring the subject closer and to photograph details from a distance. The image quality does differ depending on the options on your camera. A distinction is made between an optical and a digital camera zoom.

Optical VS. Digital Camera Zoom

A focal length between 38 and 60 millimetres is about the same as the human eye. With the help of zooming, you can enlarge the image section without changing the position of the camera. The focal length can be artificially extended to make the subject appear larger.

Not all camera zooms are the same as the optical camera zoom regulates the distances between the lenses in the camera lens and represents the purely mechanical change. The changing angle of view of the lens enlarges a more distant subject and brings it optically closer to the camera sensor. SLR and system cameras usually have the option of optical zooming.

With a digital zoom, you enlarge the subject after the picture has been taken. The image is then cropped to the desired size. The camera will add pixels based on the pixels in the frame.

An example of a digital zoom.

This feature is common on digital cameras. Most smartphones have a digital zoom, but optical zooms are not yet available for smartphones. Action cams also don’t usually have an optical zoom.

When using a digital zoom in comparison to an optical zoom the subject will have a reduction in quality.

Apart from the camera's own optical or digital zoom, you can also use image processing on a PC or laptop to crop the image to the optimal size. In this case the quality won’t be as good, although a computer screen gives you an overall better view of the image and you can also edit the image, which has advantages over using a digital zoom.

A photographer uses a large optical zoom lens.


Many digital cameras offer a digital zoom, which offers enough quality for occasional use, but not sufficient for passionate hobby photographers. Smartphones only offer a digital zoom. If you use an optical zoom your photos will have a better image quality. The subsequent editing of the images offers an alternative or additional suitable option for optimising your photos.



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