DSLR Camera: Yes!!! Smartphone: Yes But...

27/02/2020

Aka

Why it is so important to use a DSLR camera for documenting chameleons and their biology in the wild and in captivity...

During field trips to the wild nature where the chameleons live and in captive husbandry, we need to document lots of things...
It is important for our discussions and for the understanding of chameleon secrets...

The smartphone industry has made a great step forward in making a decent quality photography accessible for almost everyone. At the same time, they fool us in believing that the quality of photographs we obtain is replacing professional or semi-professional DSLR cameras. And, this is NOT the case.

Good pictures made by DSLR cameras or mirror-less digital cameras, are useable anywhere and everywhere, as the technical quality (resolution) of them allows the printing technologies to make a large format print.

Smartphone pictures are made to save as much space as possible and look good at smartphones or maximum at screens of laptops in viewing websites.

I remember a recent case, when we in LWC had a sad and disappointing issue in not being able to use supreme (but low resolution) photographs of the winners of a photo contest to be printed on a A3 sized calendar, as they are simply not printable.

I remember another case, when a beloved colleague of mine (Mindy Miskuff) made a fantastic observation of a chameleon eating a hummingbird. We wanted to publish it officially and hoped for good photography being published together with the report... It was quite disappointing to get a blurry thumbnail of that fantastic record of the ability of chameleons in the final...

People are going to expeditions and take their iPhones (far best option btw) in the belief, it is enough and they do not want to carry the heavy camera optics. And, I understand them: as I made a different choice and I know the pain of my back after 3 days climbing a mountain 10,000ft high from almost level base-camp wearing my 14kg photo equipment - it is enough to crawl through jungles with it for few hours...

But, the result in incomparable.

Those that pay the effort, come back from there breeding rooms or from expeditions with fantastic pictures capable of being printed on billboards or in books and publications while those with smartphones can share only in internet...

Is there an issue if price? Merely. A decent camera with basic optics does not exceed in price a standard smartphone and is definitely much cheaper than iPhone X series...

Make the right choice...