September 5, 2006
Dear CNET members,
Whether it's reading advice in the forums or hearing direct advice from people with regard to digital cameras, more often than not, I hear people say: "Digital zoom is worthless, optical zoom is what counts!" However, on the other side, I always see the big digital zoom numbers pronounced on the digital cameras' packaging as if it were the highlight of the camera's features. So what gives? Is the digital zoom feature on a camera something that can be beneficial to the user, or is it just a plain gimmick to further confuse and sell to the consumer? I personally never use the digital zoom feature on my camera; I don't see it as being a true zoom--only simulated--making my photos grainy and unclear. So with so many users saying that digital zoom is absolutely useless, why do manufacturers even bother including it at all? In the latest Point and Shout discussion, we present the question to our community members: "Is there ever a good reason to use digital zoom?" for you to chime in on. If you find a use for digital zoom, please tell us how you use it, and if you don't find it useful at all, tell us why. Hopefully with all your input, we can all get a clearer understanding of this so-called feature--to judge for ourselves if it is indeed a useful tool or not.
This week's hot topic:
Digital zoom: yes or no?
In the latest Point and Shout discussion, we asked our community if there is ever a good reason to use digital zoom on a digital camera? And many of you have already chimed in to tell us that it's useful or not.
Extremely useful at times
"When taking macro and other pictures (especially in low-light situations), when camera shake or focus might be an issue, digital zoom can be extremely useful to closely examine the sharpness of the image and determine if the picture..." (Read more)
--Submitted by: CNET member peter marshIt can be useful if you understand
"I used to think digital zooms were just a marketing rip-off, and for low-resolution cameras, they still are, but with my new 6-megapixel camera, I suddenly see the point. I don't have to shoot at full resolution anymore..." (Read more)
--Submitted by: CNET member Ann ColemanRarely usable: unless there is no choice!
"Very inexpensive digital still cameras often have NO optical zoom capacity--and, for these, folks, digital zoom is the only option and is "better than nothing" when something closer in than a standard photo at 10-12..." (Read more)
--Submitted by: CNET member marindavidSpeak Up!
Manufacturers like to tout big zoom numbers on their packaging and in their ads. But digital zoom always comes at the expense of resolution. Is there ever a good reason to use digital zoom? And should manufacturers continue to include it? Here's your chance to tell us if there is ever a good reason to use digital zoom.
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