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A medium or large format camera that uses a ground glass screen positioned at the film plane to view the image. Theyre also known as field cameras.

Related Terms

A folding view-camera that's usually made of wood or light metal for use on location.
A specialist camera designed that produces an elongated image by exposing using more than one film frame. A 35mm version will use one and a half frames to create a 24x54mm image and a 120 film type can capture 6x17cm images. When printed these images look stunning especially landscapes which is the main use for this type of camera. There are other panoramic models made that revolve to record a full 360 view. This can be joined and viewed digitally so you look as though you are in the centre and as you scroll with the mouse you turn around inside the view.
Many digital cameras allow the playback of stored images to be viewed as thumbnail size. This makes it quicker to look through several pictures and highlight the one you want to erase, view or print. The thumbnails appear in a grid of, usually, nine and these can be scrolled through using the camera's mode buttons.
Bag-shaped bellows that are used to allow unrestricted camera movements with a wide-angle lens attached to a large-format view camera.
The amount of a distant scene that can be viewed using a camera lens. This varies with the focal length of the lens and film format.
A button or lever on the camera that either stops the lens aperture down manually or electronically. This enables you to view the image at the aperture that will be used to take the picture. The view will be darker, but you will be able to see exactly what will and won't be sharp or in focus. See "Using the depth of field button" in the Techniques section.
Describes how much an imaging sensor has been cropped in relation to its full-frame equivalent. It always describes how many times larger the full-frame is in relation to the cropped sensor. Take an APS-C sensor with a crop factor of 1.6, for instance. This indicates the sensor is 60% of the size of a frame of 35mm film. The crop factor is used to calculate how much of the equivalent of the full-frame field of view the cropped sensor will have with a lens. In order to calculate this, one multiplies the focal length of the lens by the crop factor. A 1.6 crop-factor, for instance, will give a 100mm lens the same field of view as a 160mm lens on a full-frame camera.
Indicates the magnification and angle-of-view of a lens. The human eye sees things roughly the same as a 43mm focal length of a lens for a 35mm camera. Anything shorter is classed as a wide-angle, while longer focal lengths are telephoto. Because of the comparatively small size of the CCD in a compact digital camera it has a standard focal length of between 6mm and 8mm while a medium-format camera is around 80mm.
Indicates whether the camera can be connected to a TV to view the results. If it has PAL it can be played on UK-televisions or NTSC for US. Image quality looks as good as it would on a computer screen and if the camera has a slide show mode it can be left to run through all the pictures stored in the camera's memory or card.
A picture file format that some of the more advanced cameras have the option of using when taking photographs. In this mode the photograph is captured in a "raw"state direct from the camera's CCD so no automated processing is done by the camera. You then use RAW processing software such as Capture One to view and process the file on your computer giving you complete control of properties such as exposure, colour and sharpness. This mode is preferred by enthusiast and professional photographers who tailor settings to there liking. The downside is the file is not compressed by the camera, like it is in normal jpg shooting mode so you can only shoot a small number of photos before the memory card fills up.
A button or lever on the camera or exposure meter used to lock the automatically measured light reading into a memory while you recompose.This is ideal for backlit subjects because you can move closer to the subject, take a reading without any background in the view, lock the exposure and move back to the original position to take the photo.It's also fine for landscapes when there's an expanse of bright sky. Point the camera down to the ground, lock the exposure, recompose and shoot.Use this to bias the exposure to one area of the scene or to maintain a consistent reading when lighting conditions are variable.
One of the earliest forms of camera meter that takes a reading from most of the image area, but biases the measurement towards the lower central portion of the image. In landscape photography its a good idea to point the camera down slightly and take a reading without any sky in the view to ensure more accurate results.
A camera with two lenses the upper one is the viewfinder lens that has a mirror reflex view and the bottom one is the taking lens.
A type of finder found on old collectable cameras and most medium format models. The finder has a hood to prevent light reducing contrast as you view directly from the focusing screen. It's called a waist level finder because to use it comfortably you'd hold the camera at waist level.
Artificial light appears in a variety of forms - tungsten and fluorescent being two of the most widely used. Each type of lighting produces a different colour temperature that our brain compensates for to make everything appear as though it's neutral light. Digital cameras and film are not so forgiving and record the colour as it really is, so in tungsten light the picture comes out orange/yellow and fluorescent goes green. These colour casts can be corrected using filters on a film based camera, and digital cameras have a white balance setting to make the pictures look like the view our eyes see. Some models have manual white balance control where you select the type of lighting from a list, but most take care of the colour automatically.
Electronic Viewfinder - shows the view from the camera lens on a small electronic display.