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Digital Library

Volume 4


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Asked Questions
Digital Photography
Digital Library Vol. 4

Disclaimer: While every endeavour has been

made to provide accurate information, no
liability will be assumed for typographical
errors and omissions or technical inaccuracies.

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1. The fascinating world of digital photography 4 3.13 Blackboard/Whiteboard 46
3.14 Movie mode 46
2. Digital camera technology 8
3.15 Sound recording 47
2.1 How does a digital camera work? 8 3.16 General tips and hints for better photos 47
2.2 The CCD chip 9
2.3 What to look for when buying a digital camera 13 4. Printing digital images 50
2.4 Factors affecting image quality 16 4.1 Traditional photos vs. digital photo prints 50
2.5 The importance of a good lens system 18 4.2 Home printing 51
2.6 Long-term storage of digital images 20 4.3 Printing services for digital photos 56
2.7 Servicing digital cameras 21 4.4 Enlarging digital prints 57
2.8 Power sources 22
5. Archiving digital photos 60
3. Taking digital pictures 24 5.1 Software solutions 60
3.1 Metering systems 24 5.2 Recommended hardware 62
3.1.1 Exposure metering systems 24 5.3 Downloading images from memory cards 63
3.1.2 Focus systems 27 5.4 Connecting a digital camera to a computer system 64
3.1.3 White balance 28 5.5 Important image file formats 65
3.1.4 Sensitivity 31 5.6 Copying images to a CD-ROM 68
3.2 The camera flash 32
6. Compressing image data 70
3.3 Image optimisation systems 34
3.3.1 TruePic 34 6.1 Storage requirements 70
3.3.2 Noise reduction 35 6.2 The important compression methods 71
3.3.3 Pixel mapping 36 6.3 Selecting the right compression level 74
3.4 Scene programs 36 6.4 PKZIP/WinZIP and StuffIt 75
3.5 Manual control 37 6.5 Pixel number in compression 76
3.5.1 Aperture 37 6.6 Saving images in different file formats 76
3.5.2 Shutter 38
7. Editing digital images 78
3.6 Histogram 39
3.7 Zoom 39 7.1 Image editing programs 78
3.8 Macro shooting 40 7.2 Sending image files by email 79
3.9 Sequence shooting 42 7.3 Transferring digital data with a mobile phone 80
3.10 Self-timer 43 7.4 Digital images for the internet 81
3.11 Panorama 43 7.5 Viewing digital pictures with the TV 83
3.12 B & W and sepia 45 8. The A to Z of digital photography 84

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1. The fascinating world

of digital photography

“A picture says more than a thousand words.”

This is certainly one explanation for why photo-
graphy has lost none of its power to fascinate
and enthral in its almost 200 year history.

Even though the cameras were still expensive,

heavy, cumbersome and complicated well into
the 20th century, these failings proved to have
little influence on the technology’s success.
The reason: for the first time it was possible to
capture moments in time and illustrate feelings,
moods, desires at more or less the press of a
button. Photography was here to stay.

Whether digital or analogue, in the studio or

out in the open, photography is always much
more than just capturing reality. It is also the
interpretation of what the photographer sees
and the transformation of this into a new, two-
dimensional reality so that the moment comes
back to life when the image is viewed.

It’s a pity then, that with conventional analogue

photography the results cannot be seen immedi-
ately, checked or edited until the film has been
exposed and developed.

While the instant photo technology introduced

by Polaroid went some way to changing this, it lower cost of components (LC-Displays, CCD
was digital imaging that really revolutionised the chips, etc.), led to the first affordable, digital
photographic experience. cameras appearing on the consumer market in
the mid 90s.
Initially, this new technology was prohibitively
expensive and really only attractive to technologi- Similar to the development of the computer,
cally adventurous pro users. However, as a result digital photography has experienced a dramatic
of the internet and email boom, demand for easy- increase in performance power. For example,
to-produce and affordable digital images rose whereas the first consumer camera had a resolu-
to unforeseen levels. This, together with the ever tion of only around 300,000 pixels, today there
are models with five million pixels or more that
not only meet the needs of professional photogra-
phers but also fit the price range of amateurs.

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1. The fascinating world

of digital photography

The growth in the number of manually adjustable So, it’s hardly surprising that the digital camera
shooting parameters is equally impressive. While market has been enjoying such an extraordinary
the earliest models featured as good as no growth rate. While the total of digital cameras
individually adjustable settings, modern digital sold in 1996 reached just about 1.2 million (of
cameras are on a par with their analogue counter- which only 100,000 were sold in Europe), this
parts when it comes to manual control. number had risen to 18.5 million worldwide in
The reasons for the appeal of this imaging tech-
nology are manifold. These are just ten examples: However, since a large proportion of digital
camera users are new to the technology (and
1. No need to buy film ever again. not always familiar with the workings of PCs),
and because of the rapid development in this
2. Storage media is reusable. field, new questions constantly arise and older
ones go unanswered. In this booklet we have
3. Images can be checked and enjoyed therefore tried to present short, to-the-point
immediately after capture. answers to frequently asked questions. Naturally,
this brochure will not be able to cover all
4. The cameras’ optical systems are of the aspects of this complex subject. We would
highest quality and have a superior lens though be delighted if the FAQ could help you
resolution compared to those in analogue get more enjoyment from digital photography
models. and even obtain better results.

5. Silent operation for discrete shooting.

6. Creative effects possible even at the

recording stage.

7. Presentation of the images on a TV

(slide show).

8. No loss of quality when copying and

transferring data.

9. Editing images later is easy.

10. Prints can be produced and photos sent via

email immediately.

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2. Digital camera technology

2.1 How does a digital camera work? The heart of the digital camera is hidden behind
the aperture. The CCD (Charge-Coupled Device)
Digital cameras cannot be so readily compared chip is a light-sensitive semiconductor element
to analogue cameras, which use slide or negative made up of many silicon diodes. When light hits
film. Seen from a technological point of view, the individual photosensitive diode, it causes it to
they are more similar to video cameras that take generate an electrical impulse which is read by
one image at a time. the camera.

First, let’s look at how an The →analogue-digital conversion process converts

analogue camera works. the analogue impulses for each image dot into
The analogue digital values for brightness. Those digital values
camera Simply put, it consists of a are then calculated by the camera's imaging pro-
lens system, an cessing engine, comprising an →ASIC chip and
aperture and a software, to make better images (for example, by
shutter. The lens optimising gamma conversion and colour repro-
system ensures duction). The reconstructed digital image is then
the captured transferred into the camera's storage media.
image is in focus
while the →aperture and
→shutter control the amount of light reaching the
2.2 What is a CCD chip?
film. As soon as the shutter is released, light is let
into the camera through the →lens system and
aperture to land on the photosensitive film. The
resulting chemical reaction records the image on
the film surface. This image is then set in the
developing process.
Although digital cameras Abbreviation for
may often look like their “picture element”.
The digital It is the smallest
camera analogue counterparts and
element of a
share many components, raster display or
such as aperture, shut- digital picture,
ter and a lens system, containing infor-
their methods for mation about
brightness and
recording images differ colour. Generally, The CCD chip is about as large as your fingernail
radically. Instead of in a monitor or and has millions of photosensitive diodes
light-sensitive film, they ink-jet printer, a arranged in columns and rows on its surface,
pixel can consist
use a combination of →CCD chip, →imaging of up to 256 dots much like the dots, or pixels, on a computer
processing engine and storage media to capture per colour. monitor.
the image. Exception: →Dye

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2. Digital camera technology

If each of the sensors on a CCD

chip were to react to incoming Even and odd rows
are read separately
light in the same way, a digital Video CCD
camera could only take black
and white pictures. However, to
ensure that all colours can be
captured, the sensors are covered
with different colour filters – either RGB (Red,
Green, Blue) or CMY (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow)
with additional green filters for more true-to-life

Besides colour, brightness data is also required 1, 3, 5 etc. To allow uninterrupted reading, the
for correct image reproduction. The light for each digital camera uses a mechanical shutter to
of the three colours is divided up into 256 levels prevent more light entering the camera.
of intensity. This combination of 256 x 256 x 256 Due to their high performance, relatively simple
yields 16.7 million possible colours for true construction and low production costs, video
colour reproduction. CCDs are found in many digital cameras.

The captured data is transformed into digital sig- Another type of CCD called the progressive scan
nals so that all relevant image information can be CCD, or simply progressive CCD, can record a
stored by the digital camera. number of complete images per second. Because
the image is captured and read in one movement,
Basically, there are two different kinds of that is row after row (1, 2, 3, 4 etc.), a mechani-
CCD chips which can be used in digital cal shutter is superfluous and exposure time can
cameras. The first was originally devel- be controlled electronically, enabling extremely
oped for television and video and has high shutter speeds. Consequently, cameras with
since been optimised for still cameras. progressive CCDs are ideal for sports and action
Called the video, or interlaced CCD, it photography.
has the advantage of high light sensitiv-
ity and features either RGB or CMY and green
colour filters.
Progressive CCD
Although this CCD captures the information in
one shot, the data is read in two sequences: Data read
first, rows 2, 4, 6 etc. of the CCD, and then rows in
one pass.

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2. Digital camera technology

A progressive CCD is coated with 2.3 What should I take into account when shopping
RGB (Red, Green, Blue) colour fil- for a digital camera?
ters. Since each pixel in the picture
corresponds to one of the three types Before buying a
of CCD pixels, only one colour is digital camera you
recorded for each dot. An imaging should think about
processing engine is used to calculate and what you intend
complete the missing colour data. The better to use it for. If you
the imaging processing engine program, the are looking for a
better the resulting picture will be. model for taking
snap shots at
An additional improvement in picture quality is family gatherings
achieved by a relatively simple trick. By modify- or on holiday, for
ing the CCD chip’s proportion of green-filtered example, you would be best served by a fully-
pixels to contain two green filters for every red automatic compact or compact zoom camera
and blue filter, the subject can be reproduced that takes care of all the details.
even more precisely.
For users who want the convenience allowed by
The reason for this: not only is the human eye a compact, easy-to-use model but also wish to be
more sensitive to green but the colour green also able to add their own personal touches from time
significantly influences our perception of bright- to time, there are a number of competitively-
ness. priced user-friendly cameras that offer a range of
adjustable settings, such as shutter speed, aper-
An alternative to the CCD chip is the CMOS ture and white balance, as well as picture effects
chip, which also employs light-sensitive diodes like →sepia recording.
for capturing images. While these chips have
certain advantages over the CCD, not least in To meet the quality and performance
being relatively cheap to produce and having requirements of the professional photog-
comparatively low energy requirements, many rapher, the camera needs to combine
manufacturers still prefer to use CCDs in their a very high →resolution and precision
cameras because the CMOS chips usually pro- lens with extensive shooting control.
duce far too much noise, significantly affecting It also should allow the connection of
image quality. accessories, such as converter lenses
and external flash systems, including,
via an →x-contact, studio flashes.
A variety of models, mainly digital
SLR’s, meet these criteria.

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2. Digital camera technology

So, what features should you look for in a digital sufficient. Where it is too difficult –
camera? Digital photography is all too often or too dangerous – to get close to the
described as digital technology plus some photo subject, such as when taking pictures
technology. However, it is actually photo technol- of the action at large sporting events
ogy that uses digital technology. Therefore high or of animals in the wild, an 8x or
resolution lenses, efficient flash systems, and, 10x lens is very helpful. Many models
if desired manually adjustable parameters are also feature digital zooms. While
important in a digital camera. these provide additional magnification
power, they are accompanied by a
→Zoom lenses let you get closer to the subject. reduction in resolution which in turn
Generally, the larger, more powerful the zoom means a decrease in image quality.
lens, the more expensive and heavier the camera
(though digital camera zoom lenses are far more Fast shutter speeds of 1/1000 sec.
compact and lighter that those on analogue and over are also desirable when
models.) For everyday use, a 3x lens is usually taking pictures of fast moving sub-
Zoom versatility
jects, such as birds or cars. On the
other hand, you should look for a
camera that offers very slow exposure times if
you intend to take pictures in low light or at
night, for example.

Besides comparing general shooting features, you

should also examine the digital camera’s image
storage capacity. Since each recorded picture (in
spite of image →compression) requires relatively
large amounts of memory, you should make sure
that the camera in question comes equipped with
quickly replaceable memory cards or storage
modules. These allow you to change the media
within seconds so you can continue shooting.
Furthermore, it is best to check that the cards
are small, manageable, affordable, and provide
sufficient storage capacity.

As a rule of thumb, if you ensure that the digital

camera you want to buy has all the features you
would look for in a traditional (analogue) camera,
you can hardly go wrong.

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2. Digital camera technology

Undeniably, price is also a strong factor when pixel errors. Yet, if the CCD has been poorly
choosing a camera but this should not be the manufactured and contains too many pixel errors,
only criterion. With photography it’s the result there can be a noticeable effect on picture quality.
that counts and therefore you should consider the
picture quality of the camera before you decide That’s why a critical compari-
to buy. son of different models is the
only way to ensure you get the
best product. Pay special atten-
2.4 What factors affect picture quality?
tion to the sharpness of the
Four factors play a primary role in establishing image outlines and the acute-
the quality of a digital camera: first, the resolution ness of the pixels. If these
of the CCD; second, the way the CCD works; results appear to be satisfac-
third, the "intelligence" of the camera’s imaging tory, then check the reaction of
processing engine; and finally the optical con- the camera to different lighting
stituents of the camera. situations. Asking for a printout
of a digital photograph is also
The camera’s resolution, which is usually written recommended. By this point,
on its body and given in →megapixels, acts as an you will be able to tell how
initial, basic quality guide. Two megapixels are good the CCD chips really are.
sufficient for postcard sized prints (see also sec-
tion 4) and generally, the higher the resolution, Another factor that significantly
the better the camera’s pictures compared to determines the quality of pic-
those from lower resolution models. tures is the camera’s imaging
processing engine. Comprising
However, if you have a quick look at the prod- an ASIC chip and software,
ucts on sale or read the reviews in specialist this is responsible, among other things, for image
magazines you will soon discover that there are enhancement (such as →interpolation, gamma
quite large differences between cameras that conversion and colour reproduction.) Using spe-
offer the same resolution, especially when the cial computational processes, the processing
photos are printed. Why is this? engine adds information to the partially recorded
image data and separates the important from the
There are various reasons. One explanation is the unimportant image data. The more effective the
difference in methods used by CCD chips (see camera’s ASIC chip and software are in carrying
section 2.2) and the quality of their production. out these tasks, the faster it can be done and the
With millions of pixels compacted on a miniature better the quality of the final picture. For more
surface, it is hardly surprising that the majority of about this, turn to section 3.3.1(TruePic). In
all CCDs produced can have a number of more addition to the resolution and quality of the CCD
or less insignificant faulty pixels. Pixel mapping chip and the camera’s software, the optical tech-
(see section 3.3.2) helps compensate for some nology of the lens system also plays a key role in

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2. Digital camera technology

delivering excellent digital photographs. More they can fit on the same or similar area. On a
about camera optics can be found in the follow- CCD under 1” in size with three or four megapix-
ing section. els, for example, the width (or pitch) of the pixel
is just six microns or less (1 millimetre is 1,000
microns). Whereas film-based camera technology
2.5 What role does the lens system play in a digital camera?
only requires optical systems that focus light to a
As mentioned in sec- resolution of 10 microns, the CCD in our exam-
tion 2.4, the digital ple requires a lens that can focus light to a reso-
camera’s →lens system lution of three or four microns.
is often not given
enough consideration. Also, due to the construction of the individual
Many manufacturers sensors, which are surrounded by a “wall” on
draw the consumer’s four sides, it cannot accept light coming at an
attention away from angle. The lens therefore has to focus the light
the lens, stressing squarely onto the sensor.
instead resolution,
price or other aspects. This is all the more surpris- There is another reason why you should always
ing when you consider that digital cameras look for good optical performance. In addition to
demand an even higher degree of optical perfor- picture sharpness, the lens system significantly
mance than analogue compacts or even →SLR influences colour reproduction and the ability to
models. The following explains why this is so: shoot in poor light conditions.
Digital camera lenses have to focus the light onto
a far smaller area than those in analogue models. Finally, it would be misleading to think that all
Where CCDs have a diagonal measurement of, in photographic errors could be corrected with the
some cases, 0.55 cm, 35 mm negative film meas- help of newer and improved →image editing soft-
ures 4.3 cm. Also, as CCD resolutions increase ware. The opportunities offered by various soft-
while CCD chip sizes stay virtually the same, the ware programs are certainly fascinating, yet even
actual area of the individual pixels decreases so they cannot perform miracles. What has not been
recorded in the first place cannot be improved or
added to. An excellent picture can rarely be
made from an image which has been over or
underexposed, for example, or poorly digitised.
Therefore, whoever insists on first-class picture
quality and does not want to waste time with
image editing, should make sure that the camera
includes a high quality optical system.

In the diagram on the left, the lens from the analogue camera is unable to
break the light into a resolution fine enough to fit the individual sensors on
the CCD. Lenses used in digital cameras, as shown in the diagram on the
right, have to be of a higher quality to provide the lens resolution matching
the incredibly small sensors on the CCD.

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2. Digital camera technology

2.6 Can I leave the pictures on the memory card? What hap- 2.7 Do digital cameras have to be serviced?
pens to the digital images if the camera is not used for a
long time? Digital cameras do not require any special servic-
ing. You should, of course, take care of your digi-
Nothing really. The pictures remain on the tal camera just as you would an analogue camera
memory card. Even if battery power weakens, or any other electronic instrument. Protect it from
no picture loss is to be feared with most of falls, bumps, water and replace the lens cap or
today’s cameras. In particular the flash memo- barrier when not shooting. Removing the batteries
ry storage technique (Flash from the camera if not in use for a long period of
ROM) used by e.g. →xD- time is also recommended, as is storing your
Picture Card, →Smart- camera in a dry environment. The handbook sup-
Media, →Compact plied with your camera will give you many help-
Flash, SD or Memory ful tips on how to care for it.
Stick to name a few,
provides a relatively To ensure you can always take pictures quickly, it
safe form of storage, as is recommended to check the batteries regularly
does, but to a lesser degree, (e.g. once a month). This can easily be done with
magnetic disk technology (e.g. the help of the battery gauge, a standard compo-
Microdrive.) However, you should nent in every good digital camera.
also ensure your irreplaceable images
are saved on your computer’s hard drive. If your digital camera has a date and time indica-
Better still, transfer your photos to a medium tor, you need not worry about losing this informa-
that offers the most secure storage solution, for tion after changing the battery. Most digital cam-
example a →CD or →DVD (see chapter 5). eras contain an energy buffer that safeguards
against memory deletion. If the camera contains
Whether on a hard drive, CD or DVD, multi- a backup battery, to protect against unpleasant
media PC software like Olympus surprises, this should be replaced periodically
→CAMEDIA Master is particular- according to the manufacturer’s instructions
ly handy as it lets you (note: this should be done after replacing the
organise, browse, print main battery).
and archive your

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2.8 Rechargeable batteries, non-rechargeable batteries or Some of the more professional-orientated digital
AC adapters: what is the best power supply for me? SLR models allow the attachment of a battery
pack. This rechargeable system supplies power
The more photos you for marathon shootings, so they are particularly
take, the faster battery suited for professional photographers working
power is used up. on location.
Therefore if you love
to take photos often, If you find yourself short of power or just want
you should consider to save energy, there are a few ways you can cut
buying a battery charger down your camera’s power requirements. Using
and rechargeable batteries the flash, LCD monitor or zoom lens shortens
such as Olympus’ →NiMH the life of your battery faster than normal camera
(Nickel-Metal Hydride) use. Battery drain can be greatly reduced by
rechargeable batteries. using these features sparingly.
These environmentally-
friendly, cadmium-free Last but not least, an AC adapter is ideal for
batteries have a long life shooting at home or places where a mains socket
and are ideal for the busy is close at hand. This provides a constant power
photographer. When it comes supply, without you needing to buy and change
to selecting the charger, it pays batteries.
to choose one with a battery pro-
tection system to help extend the
batteries’ life span. It is also a good
idea to buy an extra set of batteries so
you can carry on shooting while charging
up the first set.

A compact and clever solution for less active

digital photographers is the non-rechargeable
→CR-V3 lithium battery. This is a very powerful
non-rechargeable battery for digital cameras and
provides hours of shooting.

While rechargeable →NiCd, regular alkaline and

lithium batteries may be used in most digital
cameras, they do not have the power or
endurance of NiMH or CR-V3 lithium batteries.

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.1 What does the camera measure to help me get the Average and centre-weighted
optimum results? metering systems are the most
common and usually the most
Most digital cameras are equipped with several practical solutions for typical,
systems that measure the conditions to select everyday scenes. As their
the best settings for the scene. These are not respective names suggest, the
just ideal for first time users looking for no-fuss first measures the light evenly
photography. The sharpness, clarity and colour from all areas in the frame
delivered by the precision metering systems also and sets the exposure to suit
mean they are valuable features for experienced the average light value. The
amateur and professional photographers, too. second also takes measure-
ments from every area of the
frame but gives extra weight
3.1.1 Exposure systems
to the central part of the
Light is the photographer’s raw material. The frame when calculating the
way the photographer uses it and how well the exposure settings.
camera is able to detect it determines the look
of the shot. Whether they are called light or However, if the main subject
exposure metering systems, these are used by the of the photo fills only a rela-
camera to measure the brightness of the light in tively small portion of the
the frame so →aperture and →shutter speed can frame and/or reflects signifi-
be adjusted accordingly for optimally exposed cantly more or less light than
results. Most digital cameras use at least one the surrounding area, such as
exposure metering system while others feature a a black cat on a bright white
choice of systems. This lets you select the one sheet, the average exposure
best suited to achieve the intended result. for the whole frame may not
produce the best results. In
Top: When taking such cases, spot metering is
pictures of a sub- far more effective since it only takes light read-
ject in front of a
bright (or dark) ings from the very centre of the frame and sets
background, some the exposure accordingly. This is ideal for picking
average exposure out certain motifs in the frame. If you don’t want
metering systems the main subject in the centre of the frame, you
may select the
wrong exposure just need to first set the exposure for the object
settings. Spot by placing it in the centre and half depressing the
metering, taking release. Then, while holding the release in place,
readings from the
subject provides reframe your shot.
better results in
such cases

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Some models may 3.1.2 How does the camera’s autofocus operate?
also feature multi-
spot metering. There are basically two autofocus techniques. In
Here, you can the one, by e.g. emitting infrared light, a light
determine a num- beam or sonar signal, and then receiving the
ber of points where returning signal, the camera is able to judge the
the camera is to distance to the subject and adjust the focus of the
take readings, such lens accordingly. This is called an active autofo-
as first the brightest cus system. While it has the advantage that it
section followed by works even in the dark, it does have a drawback
the darkest section in that it cannot be used on objects that are far
of the main sub- away.
ject. Several points
may be selected With the passive autofocus system,
and the camera the camera examines the contrast in
determines the average exposure from all the the image captured on its →CCD prior
light values recorded. to shooting the actual shot. It then
alters the focus to produce the best
In very difficult lighting situations, it pays to use contrast, thereby ensuring the sharpest
auto bracketing. This takes a few shots in quick result. Unlike the active system, the
succession, but slightly alters the exposure for contrast detection system can focus
each so that you can select the best image later on far away objects. However, it does
and discard the others. Alternatively, you may use require a certain amount of light as
exposure correction, increasing or decreasing the well as scenes with some contrast (it
exposure level from the initial setting by specific could have problems working with
steps. white subjects on white backgrounds,
for example.) To get around this prob-
lem, some cameras are equipped with
an autofocusing light which shines on
the subject so the camera can set the
focus. There are other models which utilise both
systems for all-round focusing.

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3.1.3 What is white balance? Daylight setting With analogue cameras, in order to achieve
under tungsten
light. optimal picture results you have to choose a film
Different types of light from different sources, specifically for either artificial light or daylight.
such as the sun in a clear sky, an electric lamp Right: If photos are taken with the “wrong” type of film
or neon tube, have different light temperatures. Tungsten white for that particular light condition, the pictures
balance setting
Depending on the light source, photos can show under tungsten may come out with either a blue, green or red
the same object in widely differing colours. For light. cast. Because there is only the one type of CCD
example, without correction, scenes shot in the in a digital camera, a white balance is necessary
light from a tungsten lamp’s bulb display a yellow- to adjust the CCD and so prevent similar colour
red tinge. Therefore, besides measuring the light deviations with digital cameras.
intensity, the camera – or user – also needs to
know the colour temperature of the ambient light When digital imaging was just in its infancy, only
to ensure correct colour reproduction. This is true video cameras were available and these had to
both for digital and analogue cameras. be manually adjusted to the colour temperature
of the immediate surroundings. A piece of white

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3. Taking digital pictures

paper was held up in front of the video camera thing white and then activate the one-touch but-
to determine how strongly the surrounding light ton to save the values so you can reframe the
deviated from neutral white light. Using the shot.
values attained, the camera could be calibrated
to match the ambient lighting conditions. Nevertheless, no automatic colour balance can
compensate for insufficient lighting. For this rea-
Today, both video and digital cameras feature son, you should always make sure that either the
automatic white balance. Simply put, it works lighting conditions are suitable or that you switch
like this: the integrated light meter analyses the on an additional lamp or flash if necessary.
composition of the surrounding light. Using these
measurements, the camera determines a precise
3.1.4 What does sensitivity mean?
colour temperature range and then compensates
for any colour deviation with the help of compli- In analogue photography, the sensitivity of the
cated algorithms. In this way, a camera can take film to light plays a decisive role. Whoever wants
pictures with true-to-life colours, despite chang- to take photography seriously should always have
ing lighting conditions. a selection of films on hand with different sensi-
tivity levels. ISO 100 for shooting in bright sun-
Most digital cameras, for example, react to colour light, ISO 200 for all-round situations and 400
temperatures between approximately 3,000 and and 800 ISO film for low light photography. Film
→Kelvin scale: 6,700 Kelvin. These values are oriented on two with even higher sensitivity, such as 3,200, is also
Used to describe naturally occurring lighting conditions: about available for high-speed photography.
colour tempera-
ture. When a 6,400 Kelvin corresponds to cloudy daylight,
“black body” is while the equivalent for twilight with a large In your digital camera, the CCD can be adjusted
heated, its colour component of red is around 3,200 Kelvin. If the to provide levels of sensitivity comparable to
changes from digital camera measures a colour temperature of those of analogue camera film. Therefore, to aid
black to red, yel-
low, blue, then about 3,200 Kelvin, then the sensitivity of the understanding, the ISO values used for digital
white as the tem- CCD chip is automatically adjusted to compen- camera sensitivity are equivalent to those of film
perature rises. sate for these lighting conditions. The result is an for analogue models. If, for example, you want to
Colour tempera-
ture matches the improved picture: both better exposed and with let in more light but cannot either make the aper-
actual tempera- truer colours. ture any larger or increase the exposure time, just
ture of the heated a few presses of the camera’s buttons will
black body. The Many digital cameras further enable manual increase the sensitivity of the digital camera. In
temperature of
daylight on a adjustment of the white balance and generally this way you can work with the available aperture
sunny day, for offer pre-set parameters to match the light tem- settings and faster shutter speeds.
example, is about peratures of sunlight, overcast days, tungsten and
5,500 K; light
from a tungsten florescent light. The default equivalent ISO setting on most digital
lamp is expressed cameras is 100 and a number of models allow
as 3,200 K to If your camera has a “one touch” function, it will manual adjustment of sensitivity, such as between
3,400 K. let you adjust the white balance to best suit the
current light source. Here, train the lens on some-

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3. Taking digital pictures

100 and 400. By increasing the value, you in-

crease the number of situations in which you can
use the available shutter speeds and aperture

Many models also adjust the sensitivity auto-

matically. If it is too dark for the camera to work
with its current exposure parameters, it selects
a higher level of sensitivity for the CCD to guar-
antee clearer results.

This strategy, however, does have a particular

drawback in that the higher the CCD’s sensitivity,
the greater the likelihood of noise. For more about
this, see section 3.3.2.

Top: with slow

3.2 What should I do if the scene is not bright enough? synchronisation red-eye-reduction, fill-in and off, for example,
Normally, the camera will answer this question some cameras offer a →slow synchronisation
for you and fire the flash. A built-in flash is an Left page: night mode, which allows for particularly interesting
indispensable feature for every photographer and scene without results by firing the flash at either
most cameras offer a range of flash modes for slow synchronisa- the beginning or the end of the
tion flash
a variety of situations and effects. Besides auto, exposure.

To open up further creative

possibilities, some cameras allow
connection of an external flash,
such as the Olympus FL-40 via
a hot shoe. Others permit
a studio flash system to
be connected to a x-contact
camera using an →x-contact. connection cable

Hot shoe

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.3 Why is the camera’s internal software so important?

It is not just the way data is captured that is

important, how the data is processed can also
have a considerable influence on the quality of
the final result. Examples of important imaging
processing engines are TruePic, noise reduction
and pixel mapping.

3.3.1 What is TruePic?

Brightness TruePic is an “intelligent” imaging By removing a significant
process developed by Olympus that amount of noise, the noise
reduction feature dramati-
employs the 3-D Cubic →Algorithm and cally enhances the quality of
a super-fast →Risc and Olympus →ASIC the shot, especially for
processor. By optimising all the image night-time scenes.
information gathered by the CCD – even
for lower resolution photos – and then
matching that information up to the
picture data with the neighbouring
Conventional pixels, TruePic produces digital photos
Image Processing
that show amazing 3.3.2 What is noise reduction?
sharpness and con-
trast as well as true A set of process- Noise is the visible effect of interference on the
colour and grada- ing or working CCD’s sensors. It appears as unwanted colour
tion. instructions spots in an image – especially one taken at night
which, because with a slow shutter speed. Usually, the amount of
of their high pre-
cision, can be noise increases with the ISO and is worse under
carried out inde- hot conditions.
pendently by a
mechanical or
electronic In noise reduction mode, the camera takes two
TruePic device. Algo- shots: the normal shot and one with the same
Image Processing
rithms simply exposure time but with the shutter closed. It is
allow the com- then able to determine the areas of an individual
puter to solve
particular prob- image that are susceptible to noise and compen-
lems. In image sate for this.
editing, algo-
rithms are used
to alter images,
e.g. 3-D Cubic

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.3.3 What is pixel mapping? These modes can save you a lot of time and effort
and, by telling the camera what type of subject
Despite the greatest care being taken, CCDs will you want to shoot, they usually deliver first-rate
always have a small number of faulty pixels. results.
Since these cannot pass on the image informa-
tion, their presence could be noticed in shots as
3.5 What are the benefits of manual exposure control?
dots of a wrong colour in a large area with an
otherwise uniform tone. To avoid this, some Automatic operation is perfect for effortless
cameras use their powerful internal processors shooting and scene programs are fine for a little
to recognise and record the location of the experimentation. But if you really want creative
→dead pixels. Then, when photos are taken, the control, manual adjustment of the aperture and
data from neighbouring pixels is employed to shutter is a must.
optimally fill in the gap left by the faulty pixel.
3.5.1 What effect does the aperture have?
3.4 What are the scene programs?
Known as sport, landscape, portrait, etc., scene
program names make their purpose very clear and
they have pre-set shooting parameters to suit their
particular subject. For example, the sport program
automatically selects a fast →shutter speed because
it knows the photographer would like to capture
fast-moving action. The portrait program, on the
other hand, instantly selects a large aperture to
ensure background is out of focus, highlighting
the subject.
The size of the
aperture can Simply put, the aperture is an opening through
influence the size
Night scene and landscape mode.
of the area in which the light passes to get to the →CCD.
focus. A small Increasing the aperture size by choosing a low
aperture (high aperture number (F-stop), such as F2.8, allows
F-stop) provides a more light into the camera. Besides controlling
large depth of
field; a large aper- exposure, the aperture also alters the shot’s →depth
ture (low f-stop) of field, i.e. the part of the area between the fore-
produces a short ground and the background that is in focus. A
depth of field.
low F-stop (larger aperture) provides a very short
depth of field and therefore focuses attention on
the subject, as the area in front of and behind the
subject is out of focus. This is ideal for portraits or
picking people out in crowds. Alternatively, a
high F-stop (small aperture) provides a long depth

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3. Taking digital pictures

of field so most or all of a scene is in sharp focus. 3.6 What is a histogram?

Such a setting is suited for landscapes and archi-
tecture. If the camera features an Aperture Priority Digital camera users have a great
mode, you can set the aperture to your desired advantage over their colleagues shoot-
level and the camera adjusts the shutter speed ing with analogue models since they are
accordingly. able to check the results immediately
on the →LCD monitor. More recent
digital cameras also contain histograms.
3.5.2 What effect does the shutter speed have?
These show, in a graphic form, the dis-
Besides exposure, the shutter speed also influ- tribution of brightness in an image. From
ences the way movement is depicted. With fast the information displayed, experienced
exposure speeds, a speeding car can be frozen as users can judge the exposure quality.
it races past. Alternatively, a slow shutter speed
lets you blur the action – giving an even greater
3.7 What is best for me, an optical or digital zoom?
impression of speed. Slow shutter speeds are also
required for shooting
low light shots, such
as night-time city-
scapes. In Shutter
Priority mode, the
exposure time is
manually adjustable
and the camera
alters the aperture to
match the chosen
A digital zoom
often provides Cameras with either a zoom lens or digital zoom
additional magni-
The creative possibi- fication power - provide the user with more flexibility, letting him
lities of shutter speed but at the expense or her get closer to objects that are far away or
control. Above: slow of quality
shutter speed. Right: difficult to reach, such as football players on a
fast shutter speed. field or the ornate designs on cathedral architec-
ture. When choosing a digital camera, you should
make sure to differentiate between cameras with
optical and digital zooms.

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3. Taking digital pictures

With an optical zoom lens, the focal length can

be adjusted at pre-selected stops or moved
smoothly between a range of stops. By simply
→Focal length shortening or lengthening the →focal length, the
The distance subject appears to move either closer or further
between the film
or →CCD sensor away. However, as the zoom power extends, the
and the centre of lens’ light-gathering power is reduced, sometimes
the lens system. making slower shutter speeds necessary for cor-
Altering the focal rect exposure. To ensure bright, sharp images at
length changes
the subject’s posi- maximum zoom level, a →tripod – or if available –
tion in the frame the camera’s optical image stabiliser should be
and the depth of employed.
Even though this problem does not arise with a
digital zoom, images magnified using an optical
zoom will always be of a better quality because
the digital system simply recalculates the image
data already captured to produce a zoom effect.
For example, the digital zoom crops the central
50% the image and then doubles the size of this
section, which results in a lower resolution shot.
An optical zoom, on the other hand, actually
brings the whole scene closer so there is no loss
in detail.

3.8 What it there to consider when taking macro shots?

As CCDs are much smaller than conventional
film, they make digital cameras particularly suited
to taking detailed shots of small objects in com-
parison to their analogue counterparts. When possible →aperture. Also, because the front of the
taking macro shots, it may help to follow these camera is so close to the subject, you may have
simple tips: place the camera on a tripod or make difficulty getting the subject properly lit. Do not
sure you hold the camera very steady and use use the built-in flash unit. Instead, try to work
either the self-timer or remote control to release with the ambient light or an external flash direct-
the shutter. A long →depth of field is usually best ed on the object. Finally, remember that macro
for macro photography, so select the smallest shots may feature slight distortion. If you want to
photograph documents, you should move the
camera back a bit.

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.9 What is sequence shooting? 3.10 How can I get myself in the picture?

After the digital camera captures an image, it While some models offer a self-portrait mode for
usually needs some time to save the data to the holding the camera at arm’s length and turning
memory card before it can record the next shot. it towards you, the more conventional (and more
Depending on the picture’s resolution, this can flattering) method of getting yourself in the picture
take anywhere from a fraction of a second to over is to use the self-timer. Before activating the
one minute. However, if the photographer wants timer, place the camera on a stable surface or a
to record the progression of an action, such as tripod so it will not fall or slip and then frame the
a skateboarder performing a jump, he or she shot. The self-timer function is also handy if you
needs to be able to shoot in quick succession. want to avoid camera shake, such as when shoot-
How? ing with slow shutter speeds in low light, as man-
ual operation of the release could cause the cam-
This is made possible by, on the one hand reduc- era to move.
ing the resolution to speed up the data recording
time. On the other hand you can use the sequence
3.11 What are panorama photos?
mode found in many digital cameras and the
internal memory. By saving the first and subsequent Panoramic shots are composed of several photos
images in the short term memory, you can take joined together to provide a sweeping scene –
several shots in a quick sequence. Once the and can even show a 360° view. Each individual
maximum number of shots has been reached picture is taken from the same position, but after
(the actual limit depends on the resolution and each shot the camera is moved slightly left or right
memory capacity) or the user removes his or her or up and down along an axis. When shooting
finger from the release, all the photos are then photos for a panoramic composition, it is recom-
saved to the storage card. mended to use a tripod and to take the photos

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.12 How can I take black &

white or sepia photos with a
digital camera?

Just change the

settings from
colour to black
& white or
By combining →sepia record-
many individual relatively quickly, so that the scene does not ing in the cam-
shots, you can change too much, such as by clouds moving era’s menu (if
create stunning
panoramic scenes. into the picture. It is also best to use a long focal available) and
length because tele positions produce less distor- resume shoot-
tion than wide angle lenses so the shots fit better ing. Recording
together. Some cameras facilitate the process by in →mono-
superimposing lines over the image in the →LCD chrome can significantly alter the impact of a
so that the photographer is quickly able to tell shot, giving it a more classic, old-fashioned look
where the scenery in the next frame should over- or artistic quality. If your camera does not allow
lap that of the previous shot. recording in black & white or sepia, you can still
change the shots on the computer later.
Once saved, the photos can be transferred to
the computer where the individual shots are
stitched together. This is particularly easy if the
software includes a panorama function. The final
composition can then be printed out at home
(special panorama-length paper is available for
this) or sent to a printing service. Alternatively,
by saving the image in a file format such as
→QuickTime VR, a virtual scene can be created
in which viewers navigate their way around the
shot using the mouse to go left, right, up and

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3. Taking digital pictures

3.13 What should I do if I want to photograph text? 3.15 Is it also possible to record sound to the images?

If you wish to record text so that it can be easily Yes – and not just when recording movie
read later on, it is best to use the →blackboard sequences, but with still images as well. Besides
or whiteboard modes. Utilising only black and recording sound as the shot is taken, the user
white with no grey tones, these provide superb may also (if supported by the camera) save a brief
contrast because they save the text as black type comment or sound effect after taking a still image.
on a white background or vice versa.
3.16 What should I bear in mind when taking photographs?
Here are a few points to remember when shoot-
ing to avoid common mistakes and to enhance

• Cameras usually →focus on the subject in the

centre of the frame. Therefore, always first
place your point of interest in the centre of
the frame when setting the focus (by half
depressing the release) and then reframe the
camera, if necessary, afterwards.

• Brightness can be deceiving. The human eye is

able to adapt itself to poor lighting conditions,
but a digital camera cannot. Always remember
this when taking photos in difficult light condi-
tions. Thanks to the built-in LCD monitor, it is
easy to see whether a flash yields better results
or not.

• Beware of scenes that could trick the camera.

Most models have an →average-exposure meter-
ing system as the default setting. This can lead
3.14 What can I do in movie mode?
to poorly →exposed images if the scene includes
Many cameras today offer a movie mode that areas of strongly contrasting brightness. To
allows you to record short, low resolution prevent this, try using →spot metering.
(e.g. 320 x 240 →pixels) scenes lasting about a
few minutes. These make ideal additions to
homepages or presentations and sometimes they
can feature sound, too.

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3. Taking digital pictures

• Avoid shots with too much empty space since

this can often appear boring. You may get better
results if you let your subject fill the frame or
place additional details in the picture.

• Try shooting from different perspectives. Shots

of people and events taken from unusual angles
often stand out from others. Experiment with
photographing from the floor or an elevated

• Images shot in →monochrome can have a sig-

nificantly different impact than colour shots
and help emphasise the texture of surfaces.

• Don’t be afraid to place your subject off from

the centre of the composition. Photos with
subjects closer to the edge of the frame can
have a more dynamic feel than when they are
placed in the centre.

The fill-in flash • And of course, always have a spare set of

mode can ensure • Backlight situations can confuse the camera. batteries on hand.
your subject is
not lost in the However, the result can be improved by simply
shadows. turning on the flash. This trick is especially use-
ful when taking portraits of people positioned
in front of a bright background.

• To avoid red-eye when shooting in low light

with the flash, use the red-eye reduction mode.
If a regular flash is employed, the eyes of your
subject may seem unnaturally red because the
light from the flash is reflected off the blood
vessels in the retina and out through the wide-
open pupils. In red-eye reduction mode a lamp
shines or the flash fires a few bursts before the
shot is actually taken. The pupils contract, and
the effect of the reflected light is less noticeable.
with shooting
from different,
unusual angles.

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4. Printing digital photos

4.1 How do conventional photo prints differ

from digital photos?

As far as quality is concerned there is generally

no difference between conventional and digital
photo prints. However, the production processes
differ radically.

The traditional photo print is made by a contin-

uous series of chemical processes. Whether the
negative, the photographic paper, or film itself is
exposed, chemical reactions are always responsi-
ble for the results. These analogue processes are
so exact that there are virtually no qualitative dif-
ferences between photo prints and the original.

A digital photo print is made by bringing the

digital image on to specially coated photographic
paper using a printer.

Until just a few years ago, photo-realistic results

could only be achieved with considerable effort
and expense. Thanks to the rapid pace of devel-
opment in software and hardware, (of which
precision printers, the print stations in photo
stores and technologies like →DPOF and →Exif
are prime examples), the situation is now quite
different. Today there are many user-friendly and
affordable solutions for bringing digital photos
to paper – for both commercial and private use. 4.2 Can I print at home?

Home printing, for example, is very user-friendly. Thanks to its ability to deliver immediate results,
There are no chemicals involved, no dark room good quality, diverse performance features and
is needed and it provides the photographer with ease-of-use, the home photo printer enjoys great
results on the spot in around two minutes. Com- popularity among digital photographers. Many
mercial photo processing services (such as photo models feature memory card slots to allow
labs and dealers) have also improved over recent printing without a PC and some even have
years and their number has increased. their own LCD screen and editing functions so
the photographer can edit or crop shots on the
printer. There are also a few printers designed
for portable use.

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4. Printing digital photos

You can choose from a wide range of printing

techniques. However, not all printers are capable Thermal print head Ink ribbon
of producing realistic photos. Therefore it pays to
read about the models and, if possible, compare
printouts before making your purchase.

Colour laser, solid ink-jet, thermal wax, and

thermal fusion printers are hardly the ideal
printers for photo realistic prints, if at all. Only
Special dye-sub paper
ink-jet printers and dye-sublimation printers
are able to meet the high standards required.
The thermal print
By far the best results are achieved with →dye- head heats the image dots to produce photo realistic (non-
ribbon, causing
sublimation printers. A short explanation of the dye to diffuse rastered or patterned) prints with perfect colour
the technique used in dye-sublimation printers into the paper. transitions. The benefit of this process is particu-
explains why this is the case: larly noticeable when displaying colours and
shadows in which transitions in tone appear to
The dye-sublimation process involves heating a flow smoothly. Good dye-sublimation printers
special film coated with the elementary printing also add a protective coat to prints to ensure
colours cyan, magenta, and yellow. The coloured longer life. This is normally part of the ink ribbon
steam released in the heating process diffuses the printer uses. Such a level of performance is
directly into a not possible with ink-jet and other printing sys-
special type of tems, which use a raster print technique.
paper. By con- Print quality is also improved by the use of trans-
trolling the time parent dye in dye-sublimation models, allowing
the film is heat- the creation of new colours by positioning colour
ed, it is possi- dots on top of each other.
ble to regulate
the size of the High-end →ink-jet printers containing six or
more colour cartridges and ultra slim nozzles
can achieve print resolutions of around
→dpi 2880 x 1440 dpi or even higher and produce
Dots per inch. impressive results. It is best to select printers
A unit used in
printing for the that use separate ink cartridges so you can
geometric resolu- replace the individual colours as they run out,
tion of a picture. thereby reducing costs.

The portable
CAMEDIA P-200 printer

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An ink-jet printer injects the colour contained for printing such as the white balance setting and
inside the printing head’s storage chambers into shutter speed and whether or not night scene
each nozzle of the printing head. The ink can mode was activated. Many printing devices can
be brought to paper in either of two ways: the use this information to significantly improve the
bubble jet technology works by heating the corre- quality of the final images. →PIM and PIM II
sponding nozzle, while the piezo printer uses (PRINT Image Matching) are innovations that
a small crystal which contracts under electrical work on a similar principle to Exif Print and are
current to eject the ink. Each printer has a special used by Epson printers.
chip that determines which nozzles should be
heated or activated. Finally, a word about resolution. Compared with
the high resolution of ink-jet printers, the approx-
Although this system produces images that are imately 300 dpi resolution of many dye-sublima-
built from a rastered pattern, high-quality ink-jet tion printers sounds rather low. However, due to
models can still provide impressive photo prints the differences between the technolo-
in up to A3 format. gies, a comparison of the two
values does not permit a
The type of paper used has a significant influence fair assessment of each
on the quality of the final print. For best results, printer’s capabilities.
you should use the paper types (and inks) recom- The fact that the
mended by the printer manufacturer. Today, there dye-sublimation
is a wide selection of photo papers available. printers produce
Besides glossy types, there are also media with prints of a far
rough surfaces that produce a watercolour effect higher quality than
and others with a surface similar in texture to silk. the ink-jets is proof
of this. In this
A recent innovation that helps improve the quality case, less can
of prints is the Exif Print (Exif 2.2) standard. Exif often mean
(“Exchangeable Image File”) is a file header format more.
which records additional data about an image,
like the shooting parameters, such as the lens
focal length and flash setting used by the camera.
Under Exif Print (also called Exif 2.2), additional
information is stored which is especially important

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4. Printing digital photos

4.3 Do photo labs also provide digital photo prints? systems, edit them further (though this is best
done at home on the computer). After the custo-
As with analogue film, you can also send your mer has completed the order, a collection slip
digital pictures to developing labs to get printouts and bill is printed out and the files are then sent
of your photos. While you do not receive the to the lab by →ISDN. The prints can usually be
images immediately as with home printing, this picked up a few days later from the photo shop
has the benefit of often being cheaper. or, for an additional price, sent to your home
But how can you be sure you get the prints you
want? The Digital Print Order Format (DPOF)
4.3 To what size can a digital image be enlarged?
makes ordering photo prints much easier. The
user can pick out which images are to be printed Like every traditional slide or negative, a digital
and select the number of copies – either when picture can be enlarged indefinitely. However,
the photos are shot or later on. This information is the quality decreases proportionally as the size
save in the DPOF format and used by the printer increases. With enlargement, the photo or print
– at home or in the processing lab – to provide can become fuzzy or begin to show signs of
you with the print results you desire. “pixelisation”.

There are various ways of sending images to the Every picture, whether a negative, slide, or digital
lab. Photographers with a PC and internet con- photo, is made up of lots of individual pixels.
nection can email the files directly to an online Their organisation into rows and columns creates
photo processing lab. Their photo prints usually the picture we see. Enlarging a picture also
arrive by regular post a few days later. enlarges each of the individual pixels. When the
picture reaches a certain size, the eye no longer
However, if the user wants prints of many photos sees the sum of all the pixels as one unit but
or just some prints of very high resolution shots, rather each pixel as single objects.
sending the files by the internet may be impracti-
cal since it takes time (and, depending on the So if you want to have large prints (larger than A4)
internet provider, adds to the cost). Print stations of your digital pictures, you should make sure
are a user-friendly and cheaper alternative. that the digital camera you are planning to buy
has high resolution.
Increasingly, specialist photo shops are installing
terminals linked to large photo labs where cus- Some cameras have a special feature that opti-
tomers can insert their camera storage media, CD mises the image data for producing large format
or Zip disk. (The range of media accepted by prints. These intelligently recalculate the RAW
terminals differs, so it is best to call and ask image data to produce shots with a resolution
beforehand.) The image data is then automatically higher than that of the actual CCD. This system
and quickly transferred to the terminal’s computer. returns better results than interpolation of com-
Using the system’s monitor and keypad, the cus- pressed files.
tomer can select the desired images and, on some

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4. Printing digital photos

This table provides a helpful guide, showing up The resolution (given in dpi) can be viewed and
to which recommended size you can print your changed in many image editing programs under
digital images. the menu option “Picture Size”. Select your
Based on the fact that almost all digital cameras 150 dpi for good results.
record images with a resolution of 72 dpi, we 300 dpi for excellent photo prints and
have calculated the respective print sizes for the professional prints.
dpi values listed. Please note, however, that the
figures here should only serve as a guideline. In As a comparison, the standard formats are:
fact, many photos can usually even be printed in
good quality in larger formats.

Width x height DIN format

118.90 cm x 84.10 cm A0

Default image Print Print 84.10 cm x 59.40 cm A1

resolution (Width x height (Width x height 59.40 cm x 42.00 cm A2
in camera (72 dpi) at 150 dpi) at 300 dpi)
42.00 cm x 29.70 cm A3
640 x 480 pixels 10.84 x 8.13 cm 5.42 x 4.06 cm
29.70 cm x 21.00 cm A4
1,024 x 768 pixels 17.34 x 13.00 cm 8.67 x 6.50 cm 21.00 cm x 14.80 cm A5

1,280 x 960 pixels 21.67 x 16.26 cm 10.84 x 8.13 cm 14.80 cm x 10.50 cm A6

10.5 cm x 7.40 cm A7
1,600 x 1,200 pixels 27.09 x 20.32 cm 13.55 x 10.16 cm
7.40 cm x 5.20 cm A8
2,048 x 1,536 pixels 34.68 x 26.01 cm 17.34 x 13.00 cm
5.20 cm x 3.70 cm A9
2,288 x 1,712 pixels 38.74 x 28.99 cm 19.37 x 14.49 cm 3.70 cm x 2.60 cm A10

2,560 x 1,696 pixels 43.35 x 28.72 cm 21.67 x 14.36 cm

2,560 x 1,920 pixels 43.35 x 32.51 cm 21.67 x 16.26 cm

2,816 x 2,112 pixels 47.68 x 35.76 cm 23.84 x 17.88 cm

3,200 x 2,400 pixels 54.19 x 40.64 cm 27.09 x 20.32 cm

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5. Archiving digital photos

files are stored. The catalogue files can then be

saved on the →hard drive or to a →CD-ROM.
Nowadays, →DVDs are also becoming an increas-
ingly viable alternative for image archiving. Using
the appropriate software you can open the image
catalogue and quickly look through the thumb-
nails to find the image.

With →CAMEDIA Master, Olympus offers a con-

vincing and easy-to-use solution suited to not
only the organisation and processing of images
but also multimedia files such as sound and
movies. This software automatically identifies the
camera type, enabling easy file downloading and
subsequent retrieval. Furthermore, you can opti-
mise and customise your images by, for example,
stitching together individual pictures captured
with an Olympus digital camera in panorama
5.1 Are there special software packages for
archiving digital images? Meanwhile, CAMEDIA Master Pro additionally
offers functions for emailing, creating →HTML
You can, of course, create your own directories to photo albums and to back
archive your image files. However, as the volume up files plus further editing
of files rapidly expands it becomes increasingly possibilities. The software
difficult to keep track of them. provides templates on
which your photos can be
Imagine that you are looking for a certain photo added to produce attractive
but the files have not been named clearly. Only calendars or menus, for
by opening the files one after the other do you example. Moreover, print-
have a chance of finding the right image. outs can be made utilising a
variety of predefined layouts
It would be much simpler if you had software to (including contact sheets
help you archive and organise your data collec- that also provide detailed
tion. Such programs can create a catalogue with image information), slide
single or multiple directories. These catalogues shows with sound may be produced for viewing
show miniature images (or thumbnails) of the on a monitor and the free stitch panorama func-
original as well as give directions to where the tion lets a number of individual photos be com-
bined in one.

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5. Archiving digital photos

5.2 What hardware is needed for archiving? 5.3 How are digital images downloaded from memory cards?

Digital images are usually first transferred to a Digital photos can be copied to the computer’s
computer’s hard drive for archiving. This is not hard drive without a direct connection to the
an ideal solution, however, as hard drives can camera. The data can be downloaded from the
sometimes fail or crash resulting in partial or removable memory card used by the camera
complete data loss including that of the carefully using a variety of techniques:
constructed image archive. Whereas texts and
tables can at least be rewritten, each photo is an 1. A PC-card adapter allows you to copy data
irreplaceable original. quickly and comfortably to a notebook or, if
it has the necessary hardware and software
Because of this, it makes sense to think about configuration, a computer. Separate adapters
external data storage. The simplest solution would are available for virtually all types of remov-
be to transfer the files to a floppy disk. This is, able storage media.
however, not recommended. First of all, diskettes
only hold 1.44 MB, and can therefore only store 2. Via a USB connection, the card reader/writer
a few pictures – if any at all! Moreover, because MAUSB-10 from Olympus allows super fast
a floppy disk’s magnetic film is quite sensitive and trouble-free data transfer to either a PC
and therefore not error-free, it should not be or Mac from xD-Picture Card and Smart-
considered as a viable external storage medium Media. Conceived as both a reading and
for long-term archiving. writing device, the MAUSB-10 can
also be used to copy image files from
With up to 750 MB and 2 GB of storage space a computer to the removable memory
respectively, ZIP and JAZ diskettes from Iomega media as well as transfer data between
offer more memory but no better data security. cards. Because the device takes its power
Archiving on a →CD-ROM or →DVD comes much from the computer, no additional electricity
closer to achieving the desired results. However, a cables are needed. There are also a variety of
CD or DVD “burner” is required for this process. similar devices available from other manufac-
These devices use a laser beam to “engrave” or
“burn” the data onto a recordable CD or DVD. 3. Floppy-disk adapters are available for a
Generally, up to 650 MB of data can be stored number of removable media, such as the
on a single CD, or up to 4.7 GB on a DVD with FlashPath adapter for SmartMedia. The
this method. However CD and DVD surfaces advantage of these is that they fit into a PC
are quite sensitive, and scratches, heat, and even and Mac disk drive to enable the effortless
sunlight can potentially lead to data errors. transfer of digital photos.
Therefore it is very important to take proper
care when handling and storing such discs. It
is also recommended to make new back-up
copies of your image discs every few years to
ensure the longevity of your image archives.

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5. Archiving digital photos

5.4 How do I connect my digital camera to my computer driver in order to download images from the
system and download images? camera. Simply connect the camera to the
computer’s USB slot and it recognises the camera
Serial interface Generally, provided the relevant software drivers as a regular drive. Image files can then be trans-
Also called an for the operating system used are available, and ferred across to individual folders via drag & drop
RS232C or as long as the camera’s interface is identical to or using the usual copy functions available on
RS422 interface.
This interface that of the computer, it is easy to connect your your operating system.
allows peripheral camera to your computer. There are two main
devices such as a types of connections – →serial and →USB. The
mouse, modem, 5.5 What are the most important image formats?
type of interface used influences the download
and certain digi-
tal cameras to be time as do the size and number of files that can There are a great variety of formats in which
connected to the be transferred from the camera to computer. you can store your digital pictures. Two kinds
computer. Data is have established themselves so well in recent
transferred serial-
ly (bit by bit) or Previously, data was almost always sent directly years that they can be regarded as standard and
one piece after from the camera to the PC’s hard drive by a are also supported by the Exif file management
another. serial interface (RS232). This could take quite a format for added versatility.
long time, depending on the amount of data.
The first kind of image format became firmly
With ever higher resolution images established in the photographic world with the
consuming more and more emergence of digital image processing. Originally
memory, and thereby requir- designed for use with the Macintosh computer,
ing more data to be trans- the constantly improved Tagged Image File Format,
ferred from the camera to the or TIFF for short, found a wide acceptance among
computer, a more effective PC users as well. TIFF’s main advantage is its
solution is required. Nowa- flexibility. This format can be used, for example,
days, most cameras and Bit to store any colour tone at all, from 1 to 32 bits.
computers feature a USB Binary digit. The This complete support of the 32-bit →CMYK format
interface, allowing much smallest digital in particular makes it the preferred method for
unit. It can only
faster data transfer rates. A be one of two editing in →DTP and printer applications.
development of this tech- states (0 or 1).
nology, USB AutoConnect 8 bits make up
1 byte.
(also called USB Storage
Class), makes downloading
photos even easier. The
of computer systems with
USB AutoConnect no longer
require you to install a special

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5. Archiving digital photos

You should choose the TIFF storage format if you The BMP format, for example, is the standard for-
want to edit your pictures with a DTP program or mat for Windows. It is recognised by almost all
if you want them to be edited elsewhere. image editing programs. In addition to the JPEG
Gif format, the GIF format is also used for online
JPEG The second standard format, abbreviated JPEG Graphic Inter- applications, whereby only 256 colours with
Joint change Format.
(Joint Photographers Expert Group), became A popular file 96 dpi can be stored. There are also the EPS-Post-
Experts Group. increasingly popular not least because of its suit- format for Script and the →PSD formats. The latter is the
A lossy form of ability for use with online systems. This format the exchange format for Adobe Photoshop which is primarily
data compression combines two specific characteristics: complete of computer used in DTP circles.
that enables the graphics.
selection of dif- colour range with low storage requirements
ferent levels of (accompanied, however, with more, or less signif- For professional photographers and those specifi-
compression. icant, reductions in quality). cally wishing to obtain “clean” data, for example
Because bright- to edit photos on the computer after capture or
ness information
is more important Saving a picture with a complete colour range in for scientific purposes, another type of file format
than colour data, a JPEG format takes up only a fraction of the stor- is available in some pro-level digital cameras. The
most pixels only age space it would require if saved in TIFF format RAW file format records a “pure depiction” of the
store the bright-
ness information. using LZW compression. The JPEG format uses an image as captured by the camera’s CCD. This
(→MPEG) algorithm which recognises certain colours and means no in-camera processing has taken place,
image data as redundant and eliminates them such as white balance, thereby providing an
LZW during compression. In addition, the JPEG format untouched “digital negative” that can later be
Developed by lets you set the degree of compression. If you processed as required using the appropriate com-
Lempel, Zif and want to save storage space, you can compress the puter software. RAW is a lossless format, yet it
Welsh. A special
kind of compres- images so that they are considerably smaller than takes up considerably less storage space than
sion that reduces the original file size. its TIFF counterpart. However, RAW files cannot
storage require- be opened by most consumer photo editing
ments for files
without a loss in These qualities mean JPEG is the most commonly programs and may require special plug-ins for
quality. used format for the internet and most online serv- professional image editing software such as
ices. If you are planning to put a photo on your Adobe Photoshop.
homepage, you should save it in JPEG format.

Both TIFF and JPEG are used frequently – most

digital cameras save images in these formats – but
naturally there are many other image formats.

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5. Archiving digital photos

5.6 How do I save digital images onto CD-ROMs? tal images to a CD, consider which computer
systems will need to read the disc. If you would
As well as a computer, all you need for CD storage like both Macintosh and PC computers to be able
is a CD “burner”, a recordable CD (CD-R) or to read your digital image CD-ROM, you should
re-writable CD (CD-RW), and the appropriate also check the software’s instruction manual or
software for controlling the data transfer to the help facility.
CD. Today’s CD burning software is usually quite
easy to use and often has a similar operating Once you have selected the images you wish to
structure to other computer application programs. archive on the CD (note the maximum current
A number of the better image editing programs storage capacity of CDs is 650 or 700 MB), you
also enable CDs to be burned can commence the recording session. Depending
directly, without the need on your software, it is also possible for this to
for dedicated CD burning be done in a series of separate phases, or “multi-
software, thereby enhanc- sessions”. However, in such a case, the CD will
ing user-friendliness. generally not be able to be read from different
Nevertheless, it is always computers until all sessions are completed.
best to consult the man-
ual of the software you Finally, you should always run a test to make
are using for specific sure the CD production has been completed
operating instructions. successfully. Simply insert the CD into a different
Before burning digi- drive and open one or more files.

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6. Compressing Image Data

6.1 How much storage space do digital photos need? 6.2 What are the most important compression methods and
how do they differ?
To calculate the required storage for one digital
image, the number of horizontal pixels is multi- Compression There are two different types of compression:
plied by the number of vertical pixels. A picture means the reduc- lossless and lossy. Lossless data compression, as
tion of a file’s
with a size 1,984 x 1,488 would yield a value of storage require- the name suggests, reduces the required storage
2,952,192 pixels. But since, in addition to bright- ments, e.g. for capacity by organising the file’s data more effi-
ness data, each pixel also saves information for image and gra- ciently but without losing any data. This is the
all three colours, this intermediate value must be phic files. With obvious advantage of this system.
the help of certain
multiplied by three. This adds up to a required algorithms, data
storage capacity of 8,856,576 bytes or 8.65 is saved more Here is an example. Let’s say an image contains
→ megabytes (MB). If you are using a 32 MB card efficiently in a pixels with these colours together in a row:
Byte new format. The
A byte consists of in your camera, you would only be able to record advantage is
8 bits and can three shots before you reach your limit. However, obvious: More
represent 256 there is very rarely a reason to record images in information can
characters, num- be stored on a
bers or colour such a non-compression format. The SHQ mode, hard drive or on
White, White, White, White, Red, Red, Red, Yellow,
values. for example, provides a quality virtually compa- a digital camera’s Yellow etc.
rable to that of the non-compressed files but memory card.
requires just a fraction of the space. The same Lossless data compression makes the data look
card would hold around 14 SHQ images like this:
in a 1,984 x 1,488 resolution; in HQ
mode, over 40 such shots would 4x 3x 2x
fit on the 32 MB card.
4 x White, 3 x Red, 2 x Yellow.
Most cameras today offer a
variety of → compression levels, As you can already see, by comparing the two
so you can change between diagrams, the data has been greatly reduced in
large, high-quality files and smaller-sized files size without changing its contents.
depending on your
requirement and/or y Lossless compression works much like this. An
the remaining space example is → LZW compression used in → TIFF
on the card. As an formats.
additional help,
many models also
display the approxi-
mate number of
images of a certain
quality that still can
fit on the card.

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6. Compressing Image Data

Lossy compression works quite differently. It is So, the higher the degree of lossy compression
based on the fact that the human eye can only (e.g. in → JPEG files with high compression ratios),
perceive about 2,000 different colours at once. the more difficult it becomes to represent an
That means that 16.7 million colours do not need object’s contours correctly. However, if you only
to be saved at all. (16.7 million colours comes want to display a shot on a screen, you can
from 256 colours (R) x 256 colours (G) x 256 reduce a picture’s required storage capacity from
colours (B).) more than 2 megabytes to less than 100 kilobytes
without a significant visible loss in image quality.
This is the key to lossy compression. It searches If you wish to print images later, however, then it
the picture for unnecessary or “redundant” colour is always best to record the files in a high-quality
data and simply erases it. You can determine the format, that is with a low level of compression.
degree of lossy compression you want in the SHQ provides a very good quality while keeping
camera’s menu by selecting between the different down the file size through efficient compression.
recording modes or, once the files are on the
computer, using software like → Photoshop.

Here is another example. A picture contains the Image file formats of Olympus cameras lossless lossy
following colour pixels: (not all Olympus cameras offer all formats)

White, White, Bright Red, Pink, Red, Dark Red, TIFF X
Red, Pink etc.
The compression recognises the similarity
SHQ – lowest compression
between the different degrees of red and com-
presses them together like this: SQ2 – highest compression

White, White, Bright Red, Bright Red, Red, Red,

Red, Bright Red

A higher degree of compression would give the

following results:

White, White, Red, Red, Red, Red, Red, Red.

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6. Compressing Image Data

6.3 Which compression rates are best for which applications? 6.4 How can the space needed for digital images be reduced
without file compression?
Since you might often not be
sure when you take your photos If, after copying your digital photos to the
whether you’ll just want to computer, you want to save space on your
display them on the computer → hard drive without using file compression,
monitor or TV, or print them special archiving programs provide the answer.
out, it is better to have a very They save one or more images in a specially
high quality mode (SHQ or compressed archive file. Metaphorically
TIFF) as the default setting in speaking, this method stores files in a sort of
your camera. Then, you can “compression cocoon” from which they can
compress the files on the PC be extracted at any time without changing
later using → image editing their original file structure. There is no loss of
software. quality with this kind of compression.
Low compression
When it comes to printing or The most well-known archiving programs are
editing images, the higher the → PKZIP or WinZIP for PC systems and StuffIt
resolution, and the lower the for Mac systems. Programs like these are used
level of compression, the better. in a variety of applications, mostly for online
However, high compression servers and the internet, and are also useful for
images are fine for viewing on a sending several files together via email.
monitor, especially if they are to
be used on an internet site,
since their low resolution and
size means they can be loaded
quickly. (You can find more
about displaying pictures on the
internet in section 7.)
High compression

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6. Compressing Image Data

6.5 Is the number of pixels reduced during compression or For this reason, a double strategy is recommen-
decompression? ded. Save your most important pictures in a loss-
less format (such as TIFF) on a CD-ROM or DVD.
No. The picture resolution remains the same for
all types of compression. When you compress a Also, to save yourself time and effort, use a
digital image with a resolution of 144 dpi, the smaller format for those files that you want to
compressed data file still has the same resolution. show on the internet or just display on a
Additional storage capacity can also be saved by
manually reducing a picture’s resolution. For
example, you only need a resolution of 72 dpi to
display a photo on your monitor.
Please note that it only makes sense to reduce the
resolution, as increasing the resolution, while
technically possible, does not improve image

6.6 Can a single digital image be stored in different formats?

Once you have digitised a photo, you can con-
vert it into any image file format you want, for
example, by using imaging editing software. After
all, that is one of the great advantages of digital
image editing. Nevertheless, you should always
remember that while it is possible to enhance
certain qualities like the colour or contrast with
an image editing program, it is impossible to
improve the resolution or image size, etc. If you
have saved your photos using lossy compression
(in JPEG format, for example), you cannot “undo”
the data loss afterwards by saving the photos in a
lossless format.

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7. Editing digital photos

7.1 What are the most important image editing programs? It therefore comes as no surprise that the compa-
nies mentioned above regularly present updates
First of all, there is no single image editing pro- of their programs and continually introduce new
gram which can be described as the best or products into the market. To keep up to date with
most important. Almost all of the most common the latest developments in this fast-moving sector,
programs sufficiently master the basic functions it is recommended to regularly consult your local
needed for editing a digital image. The differ- dealer, read the photo and computer press and
ences lie in the additional features offered. check the internet.
Although they cannot be clearly categorised,
a division can be made between programs
7.2 How do you send digital images by email?
that have been created for professional and for
personal use. Everything in digital format can be sent via email.
In today’s email programs, "attaching" a picture
Adobe’s Photoshop and Painter from Procreate to an email is a very simple procedure. Most
are examples of software designed for profession- email programs incorporate an attachment icon
al use. These programs offer a wide variety of fea- on the toolbar, for example, or feature a button
tures, including the simulation of natural painting somewhere in the program window. The sender
and editing methods. These features do, however, Image: Olympus
just has to select the image or images he or she
have their price. CAMEDIA wishes to send, and attach it to the message.
Master Pro
For the non-professional market, there are many
companies that deliver affordable software with
a high level of functionality. →CAMEDIA Master
and CAMEDIA Master Pro from Olympus,
ThumbsPlus from Cerious, PaintShop Pro from
Jasc, Photoshop Elements from Adobe, Photo-
Suite from ROXIO, Kai’s Photo Soap from Scan-
Soft, Photo Express and PhotoImpact from Ulead
Systems, and Picture Publisher from Micrografix
are just some of the programs available. A variety
of these are offered as bundles with cameras and
can provide an impressive array of high-quality
functions for editing digital photos. Some of them
also include options that until recently were not
even available in professional programs.

The development in the area of digital imaging

is illustrated by, among other things, the rapidly
increasing demand for image editing software.

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7. Editing digital photos

Even easier is sending emails with image files example, can transfer data at 64,000 bits per sec-
using an →HTML compatible mailing program. ond). So if you want to send or receive pictures
These allow the pictures to be viewed in the with a mobile phone, to save time and costs you
message itself. should first compress them to ensure faster trans-
fer of the "data package". See also section 6.4.
7.3 Can digital images be transferred by mobile phone?
7.4 How can digital images be displayed on the internet?
Yes, of course. Nowadays there are two ways in
which you can send digital images via a mobile In order to be able to display and view digital
phone. photos on the internet, they have to be in either
→GIF or, better still, →JPEG or →PNG format. If
The first utilises a new generation of mobile your images are already compressed in one of
phone that integrates a digital camera with the HTML these formats, then all you need is an HTML
telephone itself. The captured images can be sent Hypertext editor, which saves you the trouble of complicated
markup lan-
via MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) to other guage, a file for- programming with the internet language HTML.
compatible phones or an email address as easily mat used in the
as a text message (SMS or Short Message Service). WWW. (World The majority of these can be found gratis as
In addition, images may also be downloaded Wide Web) →freeware or inexpensively as →shareware. More
to a computer using the appropriate cables and recent word processing programs, like Microsoft
PC-Card software, or sent via email by the phone to a
Also called computer. While this offers great flexibility, as yet,
small card that the resolution and quality of the digital images
stores informa- taken with a mobile phone is not very high.
tion and is often
used with note- The other method for sending pictures with a
books. A PC-Card
may function as a mobile phone involves the use of a notebook and
modem, or act as allows much larger files to be transmitted. You
a connection will, however, need to have a mobile phone
between a
mobile phone with an integrated →modem – a feature included
and a notebook. in most modern phones. The mobile phone is
usually connected by a special cable to a PC
PCMCIA card (also called PCMCIA card). The card inserts
Personal Com- simply into the appropriate slot of your notebook.
puter Memory
Card Internat- You are then ready to send digital images or faxes,
ional Associa- contact →mailboxes, or connect to online servers.
tion. Committee There is, however, one main drawback to sending
for the standardi- digital images with mobile phones. Most (with
sation of storage
cards. the exception of GPRS and HSCSD phones), only
have data transfer rates of between 9,600 and
14,400 →bits per second (ISDN phone lines, for

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7. Editing digital photos

Word, integrate HTML editors. These programs 7.5 Is it possible to view an image on a TV screen?
allow you to design your internet page in a word
processing program and then save it as an HTML Yes. Since the video CCD chip was originally
document. made for video cameras, it works in exactly the
same format as the one required for recording
When preparing your photos for the internet, you PAL and displaying images in PAL or NTSC. (The
should not forget that each picture shown on Phase Alternating SECAM standard in France is not usually support-
Line. A colour
an internet browser has to be downloaded by television stan- ed). As videos and televisions work according
the receiving party. Therefore, as a guideline, no dard developed to the same principles, it is not a problem to
picture (even very detailed ones) should be larger in Germany in show images taken with a digital camera on the
than 50 →kilobytes. 1967 and used in television.
many European
and non-Euro-
The photo you want to show is then imported pean countries. Viewing images on a television is a convenient
to the HTML editor. Note: the photo will not be way to look at photos in a large format and share
saved in the HTML document. The only thing NTSC them with friends and family. Many cameras also
to be found here is a reference to the picture. The National Televi- let you rotate images, so you can comfortably
sion Standards
internet browser brings the HTML text and the Committee. view pictures with a portrait format.
image file together to produce the page you see American
on your screen. This is important to remember television stan-
because you have to copy your picture together dard for the cod-
ing/encoding of
with the HTML document to your internet server colours. It is used
in order for the browser to view the picture. in USA, Japan
and some Asian
Transferring data from your hard drive to the
internet server is done with an →FTP program. In
FTP (file transfer protocol), the data, regardless
of the server’s operating system or the file format,
is transferred and stored in →binary code.

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8. The A to Z of digital photography

Algorithm A set of processing or working instructions that, A

AC adapter Mains adapter. Enables the connection of the
because of their high precision, can be carried
out independently by a mechanical or electronic
device. Algorithms are, for example, the set rules
digital camera to the mains electricity supply. for addition and subtraction etc. However, they
are also the instructions that are established in a D
ADC Analogue-Digital Converter. Hardware that programming language. Algorithms simply allow
converts analogue information into digital data. the computer to solve particular problems. In
(→AD-Conversion) image editing, algorithms are used to alter F
images, e.g. 3-D Cubic Algorithm. (→TruePic)
AD conversion Analogue-Digital conversion. In order to process G
an analogue signal (e.g. a photo) in a computer, Aliasing Pixel-shaped curves on the diagonal edges of H
it must first be digitised (converted into a specific objects. This can sometimes occur since all
mathematical format of binary code). Pictures are graphics consist of individual →pixels. Anti-aliasing I
usually digitised with the help of a digital camera reduces this unwelcome effect by recalculating J
or a scanner. the contrast values of the neighbouring pixels
and matching them up with each other. K
Additive colour Describes a colour system that is based upon
mixing the addition of the three additive primary colours Altavista Well-known →search engine in the →internet.
(red, green and blue). For example, colour M
televisions and computer monitor displays use Analogue Opposite of →digital. Analogue data merges
the principle of additive colour mixing. continuously into each other without clearly N
defined steps. (E.g. the colours of a rainbow O
Add-on / Add-in Extension to a program such as Excel or Word are not obviously separable from one another.)
that increases the available functions. These P
add-ons/add-ins are developed and distributed by Aperture Mechanism behind the lens that controls the Q
the respective software company or other firms. amount of light entering the camera. The aperture
not only influences picture brightness but also R
AE Automatic exposure. regulates →depth of focus. Most cameras are
equipped with an iris aperture that can be freely
AF Autofocus. adjusted or set according to pre-selected values. T
AF metering field Spot or area in the frame marking the position Aperture Priority In this mode, the user can adjust the aperture U
where the autofocus system takes readings to and the camera automatically selects the best V
set the focus. shutter speed to match it. In most cameras, the
Aperture Priority mode is denoted by the letter W
“A”. →Shutter Priority. X

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8. The A to Z of digital photography

AppleTalk A network protocol used by Macintosh computers. Autofocus (AF) Automatic focus adjustment. There are basically A
two main AF methods: the focus detecting
APS Advanced Photo System. Developed together by method, (or passive autofocus) usually employs B
five companies, this film system is distinguished a CCD and works by evaluating the amount of C
by simple operation, a new picture format contrast or the phase difference in a scene.
(16 x 30 mm) as well as a choice of three picture Distance metering (or active autofocus) utilises an D
formats. Additional information (such as exposure, (infrared) light emitter and receiver in a triangular
aperture and date) can be recorded on the mag- surveying system. Alternatively, the camera may
netic strip of the APS film. However, APS is not use ultrasound (sonar) and measure the time F
digital photography. taken for the sound signal to return. This data is
converted by a microprocessor into information G
ASCII American Standard Code for Information Inter- about distance and thereby enables the automatic H
change. The commonly used →binary code for a focusing of the lens.
total of 128 symbols (letters, numbers, punctuation I
and special symbols, though, not for umlauts) Autofocus Some cameras are equipped with an AF illumi- J
enables the correct data transfer between soft- illuminator nator which assists the normal autofocus in poor
ware and hardware. The ASCII-code employs the lighting conditions by illuminating the subject. K
first seven →bits of a →byte. The first 32 symbols In this way, the regular passive AF system (e.g.
are used as control symbols, e.g. to control a contrast detecting / phase differential method)
printer. can determine the correct focus settings – even in M
dark surroundings.
ASIC chip A chip designed for a specific application. N
They are used by cameras to quickly process AVI Audio Video Interleave. Standard file format from O
the captured image data. Microsoft (and therefore for Windows computers).
It is used for saving video sequences with or P
ATA AT Attachment. →Interface for →hard drives. without sound. Q
ATA-Flash-Cards Space-saving integrated plug-in memory cards. R
Average A special →exposure metering technique that
metering measures the average light intensity across the T
entire frame.
Auto bracketing Using this mode, a series of shots – each V
adjusted to a different exposure value – is taken
in succession. This is very useful in tricky lighting W
conditions where it is difficult to assess the X
settings. After all shots have been taken, the
best may be selected and the others deleted. Y
(→Exposure correction)

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Blackboard/ These two picture effects record images using A

Banding Depiction error often occurring in dark sections
Whiteboard only pure black and white to heighten the
image’s contrast value. This makes them ideal for
capturing text.
of an image when shooting with a high sensitivity
setting. Smooth lines of brightness or colour look Blooming The opposite of →noise; an image error that has D
like bands of brightness or colour. been more or less eradicated in the newer digital
cameras. It describes the “overflow” of electrical
Battery pack Also called power pack. Rechargeable battery charges between the individual sensors on a F
protected by casing. It provides camera, →CCD element.
external flash, etc, with additional power. G
Bluebox A process from television and movie production. H
Baud Named after the French engineer Baudot. Actors stand in front of a coloured wall, usually
It is the unit used to measure data transfer (1 painted blue. Later, a different background is I
Baud = 1 bit/sec.). For example, the specification put in for the blue areas on the recorded image, J
“28,800 Bauds” means that data can be trans- giving the impression that the actors are e.g. on
ferred at a rate of 28,800 bits per second. top of a mountain, although they never left the K
Binary This is the name given to the representation
system of numbers consisting solely of the figures Bluetooth Standard introduced by Ericsson, Intel, IBM, M
0 and 1. Just like the ten figure decimal system Nokia and Toshiba for wireless, radio-wave
(0-9), in the binary system, larger numbers are communication between different devices. Unlike N
made up by combining the numbers 0 and 1. the infrared data transfer method, which is also O
, wireless, Bluetooth does not even require visual
BIOS Stands for Basic Input / Output System and contact between the communications devices. P
describes the basic program of a computer. It operates on a frequency of 2.4 GHz and offers Q
a regular transfer rate of 1 Mbit/s. Its normal
Bit Binary digit. The smallest →digital unit that can range is 10 metres. R
show only two states, 0 or 1. 8 bits produce one
→byte. bps →Bits per second. Refers to the number of bits
transferred in one second. The bps notation is T
Bit depth →Colour depth. often found on →modems and →serial interfaces.
Bitmap A representational form for a digital image in Browser Describes a program used to display information, V
which each →bit in the computer's memory especially on the internet.
corresponds to one →dot on the screen or W
printer. X

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Buffer A form of temporary memory (RAM) where A

(Buffer memory) images are saved briefly before being written to
the storage media. This type of memory is
necessary because memory cards are comparably
Calendar card →SmartMedia function card.
slower due to their architecture and cannot
save the files at the speed the camera produces Calibration The reciprocal balancing or tuning of input D
them. Buffer memory is particularly helpful when and output devices to receive a matching value.
shooting →sequence photos. In this way, the colours on a monitor can be
matched with the printer’s colours. (→Colour F
Bug Describes a programming error. This can be management)
removed by correction or rewriting the program G
codes. (→Patch) CAMEDIA The name given to the Olympus Digital Imaging H
Bug-Fix Removing a software error by means of a small I
additional program. CAMEDIA CAMEDIA Master software allows easy, straight- J
Master / forward processing, editing, organising and
Bulb mode Long exposure mode. In bulb mode, the shutter CAMEDIA printing of digital still and video images. Using K
stays open as long as the release is held down. Master Pro the software, images can be joined together to
This allows exposure times of several minutes or create panoramic scenes. Thumbnail overviews
even hours. However, in some models, the bulb make it easy to find individual photos. The Pro M
mode is limited to a number of minutes regard- version offers additional advantages: the creation
less of how long the release is held. of presentations with sound effects and music, N
which can be saved as movies; HTML photo O
Burst mode Another term for sequence mode or continuous albums for inclusion on websites.
shooting. P
Candela Unit of illumination (cd). 1 cd is 1/683W per Q
Bus Internal interface for data transfer between steradian.
individual system components such as micro- R
processor, memory, etc. Card adapter Device in which the memory card can be
inserted for transferring the data on a memory
Byte →Binary data packet made up of 8 →bits. A byte card between a →PC Card slot and →disk drive T
can represent values between 0 and 255. It can to the computer.
depict 256 symbols, numbers or colours. In the U
computer field, larger byte size is described using Card reader/ Device that accepts memory cards and, through V
the prefix letter for the abbreviation of the exponent writer connection to a computer, allows data to be
of 2. Therefore: transferred between the media and PC. W
1 Kilobyte = 1 KB = 1,024 bytes X
1 Megabyte = 1 MB = 1,048,576 bytes
1 Gigabyte = 1 GB = 1,073,741,824 bytes Y
1 Tera-byte = 1 TB = 1,099,511,627,776 bytes.

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Cast When a colour of one type is in excess in a Chip General description for →integrated circuits A
picture, such as too much yellow or red. Often whose components (e.g. transistors, diodes,
appears if the wrong →white balance setting is resistors) are mounted on a small plate of the B
used. semiconducting material silicon. C
CCD Charge-Coupled Device. A light sensitive semi- CIE Commission Internationale de l´Eclairage. An D
conductor that converts received light into voltage international standard commission for colour
according to the level of brightness. It is used as metric measurements. The set standards are the
a →chip or line sensor in digital cameras and basis for the colour definition in →DTP standards. F
→scanners. (→progressive CCD, →video CCD)
CISC Complex Instruction Set Computer. A type of G
CD-ROM Compact-Disc-Read-Only-Memory. A “read only” →processor that recognises and processes a large H
CD-ROM can hold up to approximately 650 or number of complex and powerful instructions
700 MB of data, e.g. pictures and text. without the need for additional software. I
CD-R Compact Disc Recordable. CD on which data CMOS Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor.
can be saved (at intervals if desired) but not Light sensitive chip. Different to →CCDs, the pixel K
deleted. Besides the standard size of 12 cm elements on the CMOS are read individually.
diameter, smaller versions of 8 cm are also
available. CMYK Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key/Black. These M
are the printer colours used to create colour
CD-RW Compact Disc Rewritable. Compact disc that can prints. (→Subtractive colour mixing) N
be re-written around 1,000 times. Besides the O
standard size of 12 cm diameter, smaller versions Colour depth This refers to the maximum number of colours
of 8 cm are also available. that can be recorded by digital cameras and P
scanners or that can be displayed by graphics Q
Centre-weighted This method of →exposure metering is often used cards. A true colour representation can be
average metering for subjects with an even contrast distribution. achieved at a colour depth of 8 bits per primary R
(→Digital ESP (selective multi-zone metering); colour, that is a 24 bit colour depth. In this case,
→reflected-light metering; →exposure metering, 256 bits are available for one pixel. With an RGB
→light metering, →spot metering) signal, this value is then multiplied by a factor T
of three so that a total of 256 x 256 x 256 =
CF →Compact Flash. 16,777,216 colours can be displayed. High-end U
scanners, graphic cards etc. provide a minimum V
Charger Battery-charger. colour depth of 24 bit.

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Colour The calibration of all peripheral devices that Compression Data may be compressed to reduce storage A
management feature in the production of colour images (moni- (memory) space or transmission times
tors, scanners, colour printers etc.). For example, (= reducing the amount of data). Well-known B
by using a colour management system, the data compression standards include →JPEG and C
from a scanner is converted into values for a →MPEG.
standard colour range. The data is then arranged D
so that the printer can produce good colour CompuServe Commercial data service that offers countless
prints. information and discussion panels about an
unlimited variety of subjects. A computer, a F
Colour noise The incorrect reproduction of colour on an image, →modem, and a telephone line are required.
e.g. dots on an area which is supposed to be pure G
white. (→Noise) Computer Almost all compact or grip-type flashes are H
controlled flash computer controlled. They set their intensity by
Colour Describes the spectral energy distribution and directing a →sensor at the subject, thus gathering I
temperature thereby the colour quality of a light source. The the information from which the →flash duration J
temperature of a colour is given in →Kelvin (K). can be attained. The light sensor often gathers the
It is important to choose the correct temperature data through the cameras lens. (→TTL) K
so that a subject can be photographed in its true
colours. The spectrum that can be seen by the Converter/ Lens extension that increases or shortens the
human eye lies between approx. 2,790 K and Lens converter focal distance. (→Macro-converter, →tele-converter, M
11,000 K. →wide-angle converter)
Compact Smaller dimensions and reduced weight make CPU Central Processing Unit. The main processor O
digital camera these easy to handle models ideal for travel and of a PC (personal computer).
everyday use. P
Cross-button Special operating element. By altering the point Q
CompactFlash Rewritable removable memory or function card of pressure, a single button is all that is needed
card developed by SanDisk in 1994. In contrast with to choose various menus or select and activate R
→SmartMedia or xD-Picture Card technology, functions.
it has a built-in controller. The newer CF type II
(CF/2) cards are 5 mm thick, the CF type I are CRT Cathode Ray Tube. Electron guns inside the tube T
only 3.3 mm thick. (→PCMCIA-Cards/PC Cards) send beams onto the front surface of the tube,
causing it to glow, creating a display. (→LCD) U
Compatibility The ability of data, programs (software), and V
equipment (hardware) to run and/or work together. CR123A 3V lithium battery with a standard size of
This allows for the individual components to be 34 x 16.5 mm, also called DL123A in America. W
put together to form a system. X
CR-V3 3V lithium battery with a standard size of 52 x 14
COM port Describes the →serial interface of a computer. x 28 mm. Olympus description: LB-01E. Y
Often used to connect devices such as digital
cameras to a computer. (→USB)

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Digital camera Usually captures images with the help of a A

Data security A collective term used for any measure to protect
→CCD chip. The image data received is then
saved to special memory cards or other storage
media. (→SmartMedia, →xD-Picture Card,
and store files as well as programs for an extended →Compact Flash, →Memory Stick, →SD Card,
period of time. →MMC Card) D
Data The exchange of →digital information between Digital ESP Digital Electro-Selective Pattern. The employment
transmission two or more computers. Data is usually transmit- of a selective multi-zone metering system ensures F
ted via a direct cable connection, a computer an optimal exposure even in difficult lighting
network or telephone lines. conditions. While simple multi-zone systems G
work out the average exposure from readings H
DCF Design Rule for Camera File System – an industry throughout the frame, the digital ESP system
standard for saving digital images. This not only analyses the distribution and degree of brightness I
determines the file type, but also sets the rule for to see which of a range of scenarios the picture J
naming the folder and file structure. It allows the best matches (e.g. a shot with strong backlight
conversion of uncompressed TIFF files into or sunset). It then adjusts the settings accordingly. K
compressed JPEG files. This →JPEG file is of the (→Exposure metering, →spot metering,
Exif type and can contain camera information →reflected-light metering, →exposure metering,
such as the date and shooting parameters. →light metering) M
(→Exif, →DPOF)
Digital flash →Computer controlled flash. (→Flash) N
Dead pixels Dead pixels do not react at all (unlike →hot pixels) O
and can be seen in the resulting image as black Digital →Image editing software. (→CAMEDIA
spots. Imaging Master) P
Software Q
Depth of field The spatial area in a shot that is in focus. The
depth of field is influenced by the aperture size, Digitalisation →AD-conversion. R
the lens’ →focal length and the point of focus.
Also called depth of focus. Digital tele Thanks to special →algorithms, some digital
cameras are able to provide a zoom effect by T
Digital Opposite of analogue. Digital information is made re-calculating the captured image data. However,
up of a limited number of gradations (e.g. 256 enlarging an image in this way also means U
colours, 8 →bit). The change from one digital reducing its picture quality. V
element to the next is always “step by step” and
not continuous. W

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Diode →Photodiode. Dot pitch Used with monitors, it indicates the distance A
between individual →dots. The smaller the
Diopter Unit for measuring a lens’ refractive power. distance between dots, the sharper the image. B
In photography, the term is used with close-up Good monitors usually have a dot pitch of C
lenses and corrections to the viewfinder to adjust between 0.25 and 0.27 mm.
it to the user’s eyesight. D
Download Describes the process of receiving data, usually
Dioptric The adjustment of the viewfinder to the via either a →mailbox, the internet or another
adjustment photographer’s eyesight (unit: dpt). device like a digital camera to a PC (data trans- F
Direct print The ability to print digital pictures without the G
function need for a computer. dpi Dots per inch (1 inch = approx. 2.54 cm). H
A measuring unit in printing to describe the
Diskette Adapter →FlashPath Adapter. geometric →resolution of an image. I
Display →LCD. DPOF Digital Print Order Format. A format introduced
by the photo industry that enables images stored, K
Distortion Misrepresentation of an image. →Wide angle for example on SmartMedia or xD-Picture Card,
lenses normally produce more distortion than to be accessed directly by certain printers and
→tele lenses. copiers as well as allowing simpler professional M
treatment by photo labs.
DOS Disc Operating System. Usually DOS describes N
the operating system developed by Microsoft for DRAM Dynamic RAM. A type of memory chip that is O
personal computers. (→MS-DOS) used in most personal computers as the main
storage medium. (→RAM) P
Dot The smallest raster element of an image. Many Q
dots together produce one pixel. For example, Driver A small program that allows communication
in the specification “8 →bit →colour depth”, between the application program and a certain R
three “layers” of 256 dots each are on top of device, for example a →printer or digital camera.
one another to produce one pixel.

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DTP Desktop Publishing. This refers to the design and A

illustration of texts and graphics directly on the
monitor screen. E
Electronic The electronic →viewfinder consists of a small
DVD-ROM Digital Versatile Disc. A standard for →CD-ROM viewfinder LCD which displays the picture seen though the
with a much greater capacity (e.g. 9.4 GB) than lens, just like with a regular SLR. This is achieved D
a regular CD-ROM. with the help of the →CCD which continually
sends the captured image information to the
Dye-sublimation Describes a printing method for half-tone electronic viewfinder. As a result, composition is F
images or pictures. This process uses heat to much easier because the photographer is shown
transfer colour from a printer ribbon into the very same image seen by the camera. G
paper. The picture quality is exceptional. Furthermore, shooting data, such as picture H
The CAMEDIA photo printer P-400 ID from number and settings, may also be displayed here.
→Olympus produces A4 size prints within I
90 seconds and at a resolution of 314 →dpi Email A worldwide electronic mail system. Digitised J
with up to 16.7 million colours. data can be sent almost immediately throughout
the world via telephone lines using only a PC. K
Every email user has his or her own internationally
distinct address where he or she can be reached
electronically. Files, such as digital pictures, can M
be sent with any email message.
EPS Encapsulated PostScript. A computer →file O
format based on the →PostScript standard. It
is supported by most graphic design and page P
layout programs. In addition to the PostScript Q
code, the EPS file also contains a low resolution
ESP →Digital ESP.
EVF →Electronic viewfinder.

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Exif Exchangeable image format. A standard for image A

files created with digital cameras and other
input devices. Exif files can contain either
uncompressed →TIFF or compressed →JPEG
FAQ Frequently Asked Questions.
images and can hold data about the camera and
settings employed. Using special programs, the FDD Flexible or Floppy Disc Drive. A storage medium D
information saved can be shown. Exif 2.2 saves with a capacity of 1.44 →megabytes (MB).
even more information, such as the shooting
mode, white balance and flash settings used. File A set of data that has been arranged according F
Compatible printers can then intelligently apply to specific rules. Files are managed in the
this data to produce optimal printed results. computer by the →operating system and can be G
stored long-term on an external storage medium. H
Explorer Microsoft →internet →browser.
File format Describes the contents of files. Common file I
Exposure During exposure, the sensors on the →CCD formats include <txt> for a text file, →<eps> J
(or chemicals on the film in analogue models) are (→Encapsulated PostScript) for →PostScript,
subjected to the light outside the camera for a and <tif> for →”TIFF”-images. K
certain time.
Film scanner Hardware for digitising negatives and slides.
Exposure control Describes how the shutter speed and aperture (→Flash Film Scanner) M
are controlled by the camera. This can be either
automatic: fully automatic, programmed auto and Film sensitivity The information is given in an →ISO value, which N
scene program; as well as semi-automatic: replaced the earlier DIN and ASA (American O
Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority or manual: full Standard Association).
control of the →aperture and →shutter. P
Filter 1. A transparent, mostly coloured sheet of glass Q
Exposure Conscious deviation from the value ascertained or plastic that can be placed in front of a lens to
correction by the light meter. The change can be made create a certain effect. 2. An option in an image R
(compensation/ manually (→under- and →overexposure) or editing program that enables certain adjustments
control) through the programmed auto exposure control. to the picture, e.g. colour and brightness or
foreshortening. T
Exposure meter →Light meter
Firewire →Serial data transfer interface with a transfer U
Exposure →Light metering speed of up to 400 Mbit per seconds (50 MB V
metering per second). Sometimes known as an →IEEE1394
interface. Features some of the characteristics of W
Exposure time The length of time for which the shutter is open. →USB, such as →Plug & Play and the connection X
of up to 64 devices.

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Firmware Software contained in →ROM that manages the Flash range The distance needed to be covered by the flash A
camera’s operation. to give the subject optimal illumination. This can
be calculated using Lambert’s law. As the distance B
Fisheye lens Having a viewing angle of 180°, these lenses can from the light source is doubled only a quarter of C
provided a very surreal image. Can be divided the original amount of light will reach the sub-
into diagonal types which provide a frame-filling ject. (→Guide number) D
picture; or circular lenses which project a round
image on the frame. Flash-ROM A type of memory storage that can retain infor-
mation even after the power has been switched F
Fixed focal length When the camera’s lens has a set →focal length off. Unlike conventional →ROM, the contents of
and cannot be moved so →optical zooming is not a Flash-ROM can be deleted and rewritten with G
possible. the help of a pre-programmed electrical current. H
Therefore, a Flash-ROM is a combination of
Fixed focus Fixed focus cameras do not have →autofocus →RAM and ROM. I
systems. The focus and aperture have been set J
so that everything within a certain distance is Flash Co-ordinates the opening of the camera’s shutter
captured clearly. However, the drawback is that synchronisation with the time and duration of the flash. Some K
they do not have a very close focusing range cameras allow you to synchronise the beginning
and only a small →aperture. or end of the shutter (“first curtain” and “second
curtain” flash respectively). M
Flash Produces a large amount of light for a brief
moment to illuminate the subject. Modern flashes Focal length The distance between the centre of the lens N
work with glass discharge tubes. Computerised system and the film or CCD sensor, i.e. where O
camera flashes can measure and automatically the image is in focus. Normal focal length gives
control their intensity by means of a →sensor an image impression roughly corresponding to P
directed at the subject. (→Guide number) that of the human eye (about 50 mm in conven- Q
tional film cameras and about 7 mm in digital
Flash duration The camera’s flash synchronisation ensures the cameras with a 1/3” CCD). R
flash is emitted while the shutter is open.
Focusing Adjusting the position of the lens elements to
Flash Film Attachment for certain digital cameras bring the image into focus, i.e. so that it is clear T
Scanner that digitises 35 mm negatives, and slides. and sharp.
(→Film scanner) U
FlashPath Permits the trouble-free transfer of digital images
Adapter saved on →SmartMedia cards to a PC. The W
storage cards are inserted into the adapter and X
then in the computer’s disk drive.

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Format In computers this refers to the type of file, such Google Well-known internet search engine. A
as JPEG, TIFF or DOC. In photography and other
areas it also refers to the two dimensional size GPRS General Packet Radio Service. A mobile commu- B
of an image. In compact cameras, the photos typ- nications standard. Seen as a step between GSM C
ically have a ratio of 3:2 (Format: 36 x 24 mm). and 3G (UMTS), it offers fast data transmission
With digital images, the ratio is normally 4:3 but rates via a GSM network within a range between D
can be changed to 3:2 in some cameras. For 9.6Kbps and 115Kbps.
prints, the format means the size of the print out,
such as 9 x 13 cm, 10 x 15 cm, 13 x 18 cm. GPS Global Positioning System. The GPS receiver F
uses satellites to let you determine the exact
FreeHand Popular graphics program from Macromedia. longitude, latitude, and height above sea level G
anywhere on earth. H
Freeware Software that is free to use and pass on but not
sell. Unlike shareware, there is no need to regis- Graphics card Component of a computer that is necessary to I
ter the software. display an image on the monitor screen. J
FTP File Transfer Protocol. Protocol for transferring Grey scale A scale of shades ranging from white to black. K
files between computers and the →internet. Devices that can only display data in black and
white translate colour differences into various
Full automatic In this mode, the camera not only controls the shades of grey. M
→aperture and →shutter but all other settings
(e.g. flash). GSM Global System for Mobile Telecommunications. N
Standard for the transfer of data by mobile phone. O
Guide Number Value for the maximum power of a camera P
Gamma A process whereby contrast values are optimised.
flash based on a film with an →ISO of 100.
Built-in camera flashes have a →guide number
(GN) of approx. 10 – 20, compact flashes
correction between 20 – 40, and the GN for grip-type
flashes is between 45 – 60.
GB →Gigabyte. T
GIF Graphic Interchange Format. A popular →file U
format for computer graphics. V
Gigabyte 1 Gigabyte = 1,024 →Megabytes. W
Glass lens →Lens

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Hot plugging The connection and uncoupling of external A

Hand-held External →exposure meter. (→exposure
devices while the PC is running. Restarting the
computer is unnecessary. Requirements: →USB,
and the relevant operating system. (→Plug and
exposure meter meter, →reflected-light metering) Play)
Hard drive /disk Device for the permanent storage of programs Hot shoe A clip-on connector for an external flash system
and information that remain after a computer (or accessories like remote controls or flash
has been turned off. adapters) usually found on the top of the camera. F
It has two metal brackets and normally one or
Hardware All actual physical computer components such several electrical contacts in the centre to allow G
as the computer itself and →peripheral devices communication between the camera and flash. H
like monitor, mouse, printer, digital camera, etc. If it has no contact, this is an accessory shoe.
The flash also features a hot shoe contact and I
HDD Hard Disc Drive. (→Hard drive) normally a locking mechanism to prevent it falling J
out of the shoe.
Hi Colour Describes an image having at least 32,000 K
colours. (→True Colour) HQ resolution High Quality resolution. Description for high
digital photo quality.
Histogram A graph that shows the brightness distribution M
(by depicting the distribution of dark and bright HSCSD High Speed Circuit Switched Data. A mobile
→pixels) for a scene. The data can be used to communications standard that offers data trans- N
judge the exposure of the picture. Histograms mission rates up to 43.2Kbps. O
are sometimes found in high-end digital cameras.
Html Hypertext markup language, a →file format used P
Homepage First page of an →internet site. in the →World Wide Web. Q
Hot pixels Faulty pixels which are always on, causing a http Hypertext transfer protocol: transmission format R
white spot in the image, usually slightly larger and communication basis for the exchange of
than one pixel in size. data in the internet.

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Image stabiliser Either opto-mechanical or electronic system A

IC-Card →PC-Card.
that helps prevent camera shake to ensure
sharp, clear results even at very high zooming
levels. Upon detecting any unintentional move-
ment of the lens, the system compensates
IEEE1394 →Firewire. optically or electronically to keep the subject D
steady. While electronic stabilisation systems
Illustrator Popular graphics program from Adobe. are fine for video cameras, there are not as
suitable for still images. F
Image capacity The number of images that can be taken before
the storage medium needs to be replaced. Image The →digitisation of images means they can G
transmission/ be transmitted via data carriers or networks H
Image In order to store digital pictures economically, transfer without the loss of quality or copied an infinite
compression the image data is compressed. However, number of times. (→Data transmission) I
compression often causes a reduction in picture J
quality. Index print Reduced display of several photos on one print.
Image converter Semiconductor image converter (CCD chip). Ink jet printer A printer that by spraying tiny black or coloured
ink dots onto paper produces a hardcopy image.
Image editing Describes software that allows the user to M
software view and alter digital images. A commonly used Integrated Circuit Integrated Circuit = IC. (→Chip)
image editing program is Adobe Photoshop. N
Interface Connecting point between the computer and O
Image plane The area inside the camera where the object is an external device, e.g. mouse, →scanner,
focused clearly. The image plane can be com- →modem, digital camera. (→Serial interface, P
pared to the film plane in analogue cameras; →parallel interface) Q
the difference being that the film is replaced by
the →CCD chip. Internal memory Memory built into a camera that cannot be R
Imaging software Software for the administration and editing of
digital images (as well as other multimedia files). Internet Worldwide →network of computers that allows T
(→CAMEDIA Master) for the global exchange of information.

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Interpolation Calculating non-existent image data from cap- A

tured image data. Interpolation is used by all
digital cameras to determine colour data from
neighbouring sensors. (The reason, a sensor can
Jaggies Slang term for the stair-stepped appearance of
only record one colour.) Interpolation can also a curved or angled line in digital imaging. The
be used to increase (or decrease) an image’s smaller the pixels, and the greater their number, D
resolution. The quality of the resulting photo the less apparent the “jaggies”. Also known as
depends on the capabilities of the algorithm pixelisation.
used. It is important to remember, interpolation F
cannot produce detail that has not been cap- JAVA A programming language developed by SUN.
tured. Among its features is the possibility to program G
interactive software for the →internet. H
ISDN Integrated Services Digital Network. Digital
network for the fast transmission of voice, data, JEIDA Japan Electronics Industry Development I
pictures, etc. between uniformly standardised Association. Japanese standards committee for J
user interfaces. storage cards.
ISO Norm International Standard Organization. JPG File ending for →JPEG files.
(→Film sensitivity)
JPEG Joint Photographic Experts Group. The de facto M
standard for image compression in digital imaging
devices which enables different levels of com- N
pression to be selected. Because brightness O
information is more important than colour data,
most pixels only store the brightness information. P
When the JPEG file is opened, the missing colour Q
data is automatically calculated from the existing
information. (→MPEG) R

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KB →Kilobyte.
LAB LAB colours consist of a luminance or brightness
component and two chromatic components.
Kbit/s Kilobits per second. The number of →kilobits D
transmitted per second. (→Baud) Laser printer A printer that uses a laser beam to project charac-
ters and graphics onto a drum, which then elec-
Kbyte →Kilobyte. trographically transfers the image, using toner, F
onto paper. Laser printers are known for their high
Kelvin scale Temperature scale beginning at absolute zero quality reproduction and printing speed. G
(approx. –273° Celsius = 0 Kelvin). Therefore H
Celsius values can easily be converted into LCD Liquid Crystal Display. LCDs are commonly
Kelvin by adding 273 degrees to the Celsius used in calculators, watches, digital cameras, I
value. (→Colour temperature) and notebook computers. J
Kilobit 1 Kilobit = 1,000 →bits. LED A Light Emitting Diode is often used as an K
indicator lamp.
Kilobyte 1 Kilobyte = 1,024 →bytes.
LED printer As opposed to →laser printers, the printed image M
is not brought on to a drum by a laser beam, but
by a row of densely located light diodes. N
Lens Transparent glass or plastic that has been formed
and polished to form a certain shape, usually P
spherical. When a beam of light reaches the area Q
between the air and the lens, a part of this light is
always reflected. The remaining light passes into R
the lens and alters its propagation direction, i.e.
the light is refracted. The incorporation of various
lenses (converging and diverging lenses) creates T
a →lens system. When optimally arranged, they
allow the subject to be presented correctly on the U
→image plane. V

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Lens adapter Adapter between the end of the camera’s Light meter To ensure correct exposure, most analogue and A
lens and the lens converter. A step-up-ring is digital cameras feature automatic light metering.
also a type of lens adapter. Internal or external cells measure light intensity B
and convert the information into an electrical C
Lens hood Made from metal or plastic, the hood fits on signal. This is then used by the camera to set the
the end of the lens to shade the front lens right shutter speed and aperture for the relevant D
element from incidental light, which could light conditions. Modern exposure metering sys-
otherwise cause reflections, glare and ghosting. tems can measure the brightness of just a section
of the scene, all areas or give more weight to F
Lens system Group of →lenses (sometimes just one lens) that certain areas. (→Digital ESP/selective multi-zone
enable the sharpest and brightest pictures to be metering), →centre weighted average metering, G
taken. Often simply referred to as the lens or →spot metering, →reflected-light metering, H
objective. There are various lenses available such →light metering)
as →wide-angle, normal, →macro, and →tele with I
fixed focal distances as well as zoom lenses with Light metering Method of →exposure metering by measuring the J
adjustable focal distances. amount of light reaching an object. (→reflected-
light metering, →Digital ESP/selective multi-spot K
Light intensity 1. Relationship of the maximum diameter of an metering, →centre-weighted average metering,
→objective to its →focal distance. It is equal →spot metering)
to the smallest →aperture value (i.e. the largest M
opening). Whereas the zoom lenses on Light sensitivity →Film sensitivity.
analogue cameras have a light intensity of N
F4, good digital cameras have lenses with a Li-Ion Very lightweight rechargeable battery with a very O
value less than F3.0. rechargeable high capacity (up to twice that of a →NI-MH
2. The light intensity from sources of light battery rechargeable battery) and one that does not P
measured in →Candela. (Flash) suffer from memory effect problems. While regular Q
lithium ion batteries are available as mignon
batteries, the rechargeable versions are only used R
in custom-made forms requiring special chargers.
Line sensor Image sensor that is read line for line and of T
which the →CCD is a typical example.
Lpi lines per inch. Unit of measurement for the V
resolution of printed images. (Dots per inch)

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Li-Po The lithium polymer battery represents a new A

rechargeable type of technology that unlike →Ni-MH, →NiCd
battery and Li-Ion cells does not need a metal casing.
Instead, the electrodes are covered with flexible
Mac Abbreviated name of the Apple Macintosh
plastic or aluminium foil. They also have a very computer. This computer is often used for
high energy density so that they can be smaller graphics applications and →image processing. D
but provide higher performance than other
rechargeable batteries. Furthermore, they are Mac OS The Apple Macintosh computer’s operating
easier and cheaper to produce in the medium system. F
term than →Li-Ion rechargeable batteries but,
like the latter they are only available in custom- Macro converter Lens attachment that permits fascinating detailed G
made forms requiring special chargers. shots. (→Tele converter, →wide-angle converter) H
Lithium battery An accumulator type battery with a high energy Macro shooting Shooting while having the camera just a very I
density making it ideal for mobile phones, still short distance from the subject, such as 2 cm J
and video cameras. Generally, the lithium battery or 20 cm away.
is the main battery and the lithium ion battery is K
a secondary, rechargeable battery. Mailbox Either an answering machine or a computer
service that enables the user to leave voice
Lycos Well-known internet search engine. announcements, text messages, digital images M
or any other type of file. Ordinarily, mailboxes
LZW Developed by Lempel, Zif, and Welsh: a special are accessed via telephone lines through the use N
kind of compression reducing required storage of a →modem. O
capacity for →Bitmap formats without loss in
quality. Mass →USB Mass Storage Class. P
Storage Class Q
MB →Megabyte. R
Megabyte 1 MB = 1,024 →kilobytes.
Megapixel Digital camera equipped with a CCD that can
digital camera record images with over 1,000,000 pixels. Today, U
cameras with up to 5 megapixels are in the price V
range of amateur users.

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Memory effect A problem with NiCd rechargeable batteries Monochrome A picture in only one colour or in black and A
where, if the battery is repeatedly charged when white.
not fully empty, the battery just remembers its B
capacity when it was “topped up” and not its Motion JPEG Some digital cameras can record a fast sequence C
actual capacity. The result: the battery loses of images in QuickTime Motion JEPG format.
power over time. D
Movie recording An increasing number of digital cameras now
Memory Stick A removable memory medium developed by allow the photographer to capture movie
Sony. sequences. By taking hundreds of shots over the F
space of about a minute, a movie effect can be
MF Manual Focus. achieved (some cameras allow sound to be G
recorded to the movies too). These can then be H
Microdrive A miniature hard drive from IBM that fits the included in presentations or incorporated into
→Compact Flash Type II format. To record images internet sites. (→Sound recording.) I
to a Microdrive, a digital camera not J
only needs to be compatible with Compact MPEG Motion Picture Expert Group. The abbreviation
Flash Type II, but also electronically compatible is used to describe a compression format for K
(able to provide the power required and have →digitised video images. (→JPEG)
the necessary →firmware.)
MPU Mathematical Processing Unit. Either an integrated M
Micro processor The programmable →chip controlling the comput- or separate component of a →processor, which
er. It is composed of either one or more integrat- carries out the mathematical calculations, e.g. for N
ed circuits. certain image processing tasks. O
MiniCards Small memory cards that are manufactured by MS-DOS Microsoft Disc Operating System. (→DOS) P
Intel (Miniature Cards) or Toshiba (SSFDC). Q
Multimedia card A flash memory card used in some digital cameras
MMC →Multimedia Card. and MP3 players. R
Modem Word derived from Modulation and Demodula- Multi-spot An →autofocus system that uses readings from
tion. A device which transforms digital data into autofocus several different points in the frame to determine T
analogue signals in order to send the information the proper focus.
through a telephone line. A modem is necessary U
to access the internet or online services. Multi-spot With this system, the user can take readings from V
exposure a number of freely-definable points. The camera
Moiré An interference pattern brought about when metering recalculates the average →exposure after each W
images of differing resolution are superimposed. reading. X
This problem may occur, for example, if small
diamond shapes are to be reproduced on a Y
television screen.

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Noise A term used in the field of audio engineering to A

Navigator →Netscape internet →browser.
describe interference that can lead to impure
sounds and distortion. Noise may occur, for
example, as a result of faulty microphones or
recording equipment. In digital imaging, noise
Negative Film coated with a light sensitive emulsion that is a term used to describe the visible effect of D
after exposure and processing produces the interference on the CCD sensor. It appears as
images taken with the camera in complementary unwanted colour spots in an image - especially
values. (→Slide) those taken at night with a slow shutter speed. F
(→Colour noise)
Net Shortened form of →network or internet. G
Noise reduction In noise reduction mode, the camera takes two H
Netscape →Navigator. shots: the normal shot and one with the same
exposure time but with the shutter closed. It is I
Network The connection of several individual computers then able to determine the areas of an individual J
to aid data exchange and communication. image that are susceptible to noise and compen-
sate for this. K
NiCd battery Nickel-Cadmium battery.
NTSC National Television Standards Committee.
Ni-MH battery Nickel-Metal Hydride battery. Rechargeable American television standard for the coding/ M
batteries that have an energy density 100% encoding of colours. Developed in 1953 this
higher than →NiCd batteries and can supply high US TV norm is defined by an image size of N
energy levels when required, e.g. when using the 640 x 480 pixels and a frequency of 60 Hz O
flash in quick succession. They can be recharged (interlaced, i.e. 2 x 30 half images per second).
more than 300 times and are environmentally- (→PAL, →SECAM) P
friendly (free of cadmium and mercury). Among Q
other devices, Ni-MH batteries are used to power
digital cameras. R

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Offline Describes the state when no data connection
PageMaker Popular →DTP program.
exists. (→Online)
PAL Phase Alternating Line. A colour television D
OLE Object Linking and Embedding: Enables “objects” standard developed in Germany in 1967 and
(graphics, tables, etc.) to be embedded into used in many European and non-European
different files/documents in order to create, for countries. The image size is 786 x 576 pixels F
example, a report. with a frequency of 50 Hz interlaced (2 x 25 half
images are generated each second). (→NTSC, G
OLYMPUS One of the worldwide leaders in the optio-digital →SECAM) H
market. Olympus entered the field of digital
imaging at photokina 1996. From the very begin- Panorama Special function that allows the stitching together I
ning, the company offered a complete digital function of numerous pictures to create a panorama effect. J
photography system. With its vision, Olympus SmartMedia and xD-Picture Cards from Olympus
quickly became, and has remained, a driving make it particularly easy to create such composi- K
force in this booming sector. tions when used in conjunction with a compati-
ble Olympus digital camera.
Online Describes the state when two or more devices (→SmartMedia function card) M
are directly connected and are communicating
efficiently. (→Offline) Pantone A colour scale consisting of about 3,000 grada- N
tions in tone that is used in editing digital images. O
Operating system The basic program needed by a computer for
operation. Well-known operating systems include Parallax error When the motif seen through the camera’s P
→Windows from Microsoft and →Mac OS from →viewfinder does not correspond with what will Q
Apple. be captured by the lens due to the different view-
ing positions of the two. When shooting close up, R
Optical real Shows the actual area that can be the degree of error can lead to incorrectly framed
image viewfinder photographed. images. Some cameras feature a viewfinder with
correction markings to prevent this while others T
Optical zoom →Zoom lens. automatically compensate for the parallax effect.
In digital cameras, the parallax error can be U
Overexposure When a shot receives too much light so that the avoided by framing shots with the LCD monitor V
photo is too bright and colours are bleached out. (if available).
→Underexposure. W
Parallel Simultaneous but independent execution of X
individual tasks.

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Parallel interface Allows external devices to be connected to the Picture effects Allow images to be captured, for example, in A
computer such as printer, external storage media black & white, blackboard/whiteboard and sepia
and digital cameras. The data is transmitted →par- to produce a specific look. (→sepia) B
allel, that is, byte by byte (8 bits at once). C
Picture resolution →Resolution.
Patch A piece of programming code that can be D
“patched” into an already existing program to PIM Print Image Matching technology. Developed
correct a →bug. (→Bug-Fix) by Epson for even more realistic colours in digital
photo prints. Information about the colour scale F
PC Card Also referred to as a →PCMCIA Card. It is a and other relevant data (such as light values,
card that stores information and is often used colour saturation, colour balance, contrast etc.) G
with notebooks. A PC Card may function as a are recorded in the →Exif file header and can then H
→modem, or act as a connection between be used by PIM compatible printers when printing.
a mobile phone and a notebook. (→Card adapter) I
Pixel The pixel is the smallest element of a raster J
PCMCIA Personal Computer Memory Card International display or digital image and contains information
Association. Committee for the standardisation about intensity and colour. A pixel can be either K
of storage cards. square or rectangular. Generally, monitors or
→ink-jet prints consist of pixels with up to
PCMCIA Card →PC Card. 256 dots per colour. Exception: M
→dye-sublimation printer.
Peripheral device General term for computer accessories. N
Pixel mapping Term for process by which defective pixels on a O
Photo CD A process developed by Kodak and Philips that →CCD are recognised and compensated for.
enables the digital storage of conventional photo- The missing data is calculated by using the P
graphs and slides on a →CD-ROM. As such, the values from surrounding pixels. Q
digitised picture may be loaded into a computer
and viewed or edited like other digital images. Pixel modulation A process used in printing which changes the R
brightness of individual →pixels by changing
Photocell →Photodiode. the pixel size.
Photodiode A semiconductor which measures or converts PKZIP →.ZIP.
light into an electrical current. Photodiodes are U
commonly used in →scanners, →CCD sensors, Plug and Play Developed by Intel, this standard allows the V
and →exposure meters. installation of extension cards into a computer
without the subsequent need to alter the W
PICT file A →file format developed by Apple. configuration. This is directly supported by X
→Windows 95 and all newer Windows versions.
Photoshop Popular →image processing program. (→USB) Y

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Plug-In Additional program for a →browser to extend its Printer Some types of printers include: →dot-matrix, A
functionality. With a plug-in, file formats that are →ink-jet, →laser, →LED or →dye-sublimation.
not in →HTML, such as music and video files, B
can be accessed. Well-known plug-ins are: Print functions In addition to trimming and image selection, C
“QuickTime”, “Flash” (for video), “Shockware” some printers offer users greater independence
(for multimedia), RealAudio/RealVideo” (for from the computer by presenting them with more D
music/video through the Internet), and “Acrobat print functions. For example, individual back-
Reader” (for PDF files). grounds may be created and picture effects like
sepia used to personalise the print. And if the F
PNG Portable Network Graphics. A lossless compres- printer and camera feature →DPOF compatibility,
sion file format used for storing images. (→JPEG, print settings selected on the camera immediately G
→MPEG, →LZW, →ZIP) after taking photos will also be recognised. H
(→Picture effects.)
Polarisation filter Filter that only lets light through that is coming I
from a certain direction and so helps cut out Printing media For optimum printing results, it is important J
reflections from non-metallic surfaces (like glass (paper) to choose the best printing media. Olympus
and water). Use of the filter also increases colour not only offers paper and printer ribbons for its K
saturation, making blue skies even bluer, for →dye-sublimation printers, but also provides
example. print media for the →ink-jet user too. In addition
to the specially coated, super high quality InkJet M
Postscript A standard format for the printing or reproduction Photomedia, the CAMEDIA series also features
of text and graphical documents. other paper types with a variety of finishes, from N
high-gloss to poly-silk fabric. O
Ppi Printing term for pixel per inch. Indicates the
number of pixels a →scanner or digital camera Processor The “heart” of a computer. All programs and user P
can process per inch. commands are executed here. →CPU. Q
Primary colours The basic colours of the additive or subtractive Program In the program automatic setting, (on most R
colour system. (→Additive colour system; automatic models denoted by “P”) the camera sets the aper-
→subtractive colour system) ture and shutter speed to suit the relevant condi-
tions. T

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Progressive CCD Describes a →CCD specially developed for digital A

cameras. (→Video CCD)

Prosumer Term to describe a camera with features of

Quark Xpress Popular →DTP-program.
camera professional models that also appeal to the
consumer. Quick shooting This function allows a number of photos to be D
mode taken in quick succession (usually with one to
Protocol Basis of communication (rules, format, proce- two seconds between each shot). With a large
dures) for passing data between individual memory (→D-RAM) it is even possible to take F
devices. It is the “language” devices use to high resolution shots with only a tenth of a sec-
communicate with each other. Well-known ond between them. The images are then later G
protocols are →TCP/IP and →FTP for internet saved onto the cards. H
communication and →PTP for exchanging
images. QuickTime Developed by Apple, this is a standard for I
digital videos and streaming media. Many J
.PSD →Photoshop file. internet videos are in QuickTime format.
PTP Picture Transfer Protocol is an image data transfer QuickTime A file format created by Apple for saving and
→protocol (like the →TCP/IP protocol for the Motion JPEG compressing animated audio/video data (video-
internet) that is intended to do away with the need clips, for example). Best played with Apple M
for special digital camera drivers. PTP compatible QuickTime-Player.
devices, such as digital cameras, computers, N
mobile phones, printers, etc., should be able to QuickTime VR Addition to QuickTime for saving and displaying O
transfer data among each other without the user panorama images.
needing to install any drivers. P
QXGA Quad Extended Graphics Array. Standard for Q
displaying images on a screen. Typical resolution
is 2,048 x 1,536 pixels. (→SXGA, →VGA, R

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Reflected light Method of →exposure metering by which the A

RAM Random Access Memory. The user can read
metering amount of light reflected from the subject is
measured. (Digital ESP/selective multi-zone
metering, exposure metering, →light metering,
and write data from/onto this type of memory. →spot metering, →centre-weighted average
RAM is used to temporarily store both data and metering) D
programs. As opposed to →ROM, all memory
stored in RAM is lost when the power is turned Removable lens Lens that is not fixed to the camera but one that
off and is therefore called volatile memory. can be removed and replaced by another lens. F
Removable Memory card that may be inserted into and taken G
Raster length The number of raster points that can be memory out of the camera. Examples are →xD-Picture H
displayed per inch. Given in lines per centimetre Card, →SmartMedia and →Compact Flash.
(L/cm) or per inch (→lpi). A 60 raster is 60 L/cm I
or 152 lpi. Resolution Measurement of the image detail (dots per inch/ J
centimetre) that a device can capture or repro-
RAW Some cameras allow files to be saved in the duce. With a monitor or printer, the resolution K
RAW format. These contain the image informa- describes the number of pixels that can be shown.
tion as it is sent directly from the →CCD, i.e. When used with devices for image capture, such
before the camera has carried out any processing as digital cameras or scanners, the resolution M
at all. The RAW files are usually smaller than if refers to the number of pixels that record the
saved in →TIFF format because the colour infor- image. The result is given in dpi (“dots per inch” N
mation has not been processed at that point. To 1 inch = 2.54 cm), the horizontal and vertical O
see and edit the files and then save them in a total of pixels (e.g. 2,288 x 1,712 ) or in lpmm
more conventional format, a special program or (line pairs per millimetre, which describes the P
→plug-in is required. highest number of thin black and white lines that Q
can be displayed per millimetre). A good small
Real image →Optical real image viewfinder. image film has, for example, a resolution of R
viewfinder approximately 150 lpmm (300 dpi rounded out
to 118 dots per centimetre). In general, it can be
Rechargeable Type of battery that once empty can be said that the higher the resolution, the better the T
battery recharged using a charger. The most common quality.
types of rechargeable batteries are nickel metal U
hydride (→Ni-MH) nickel cadmium (→Ni-Cd), V
lithium ion (→li-ion) and lithium polymer (→li-po)
batteries. (→Battery pack) W

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RGB Red, Green, Blue – the three basic colours for A

→additive colour mixing.

RISC Reduced Instruction Set Computer. A →processor

Scan The process of reading information through the
or system that has extremely fast processing use of a →scanner.
times, but recognises only a small number of D
commands. Scanner A device used to →digitise printed information
(pictures, graphics, and text).
ROM Read Only Memory. This type of memory storage F
only allows the user to “read” the information it Scene program Modes for certain types of shots. In a scene
contains, i.e. the user cannot store (write) any program, the camera automatically selects the G
information on the ROM. Once written, the best parameters (such as →aperture, →shutter, H
contents of the ROM cannot be changed. (Flash flash mode, etc.) for the scene in question. Typi-
ROM,→CD-ROM,→RAM) cal scene modes include night scene, landscape, I
portrait, sport. J
RS232C →Serial interface.
SCSI Small Computer System Interface. A general inter- K
face standard used, for example, to connect
external storage devices or scanners with a
computer. It is necessary to differentiate between M
SD Card →Secure Digital Card O
Search engine Helps catalogue and find the huge amount of P
information available on the internet. (→Altavista, Q
→Google, →Lycos and →Yahoo)
SECAM Sequential Couleur Avec Memoire. French
television standard. Also used in former Eastern
Bloc countries. (→PAL, →NTSC) T
Secure Digital →Removable storage media for images U
Card and audio files. V

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Selective multi- →Digital ESP. (→Exposure metering, Shooting range The range in which a camera is able to capture A
zone metering →spot metering, →reflected-light metering, sharp, focused images.
→exposure metering, →light metering) B
SHQ-resolution Super High Quality-resolution. A very high C
Selective zone As with spot metering, selective zone metering resolution digital photo.
metering just takes the readings for a specific section in D
the frame – usually in the centre. However, unlike Shutter Either mechanical and/or electronic shutters are
spot metering, the measurement area covers possible. Mechanical systems can use a leaf (or
a larger portion (up to 20% whereas the spot iris) shutter or curtain shutter. In digital cameras F
metering just concentrates on an area below 5%.) a third alternative is also possible: the electronic
shutter. This works by activating and then deacti- G
Self-timer A function that delays the opening of the shutter. vating the →CCD so that no further light can be H
This ensures vibration-free operation during long recorded, regardless of whether light is hitting
exposure times and enables the photographer the CCD. The shutter controls the exposure time, I
to get into the picture. which can range from thousandths of a second J
to several minutes or more. Fast shutter speeds
Sepia This picture effect gives images a brown-golden freeze action, slow speeds are more suited to K
colour that resembles old photographs. stationary subjects. A tripod is recommended for
slow exposure shots to avoid camera shake.
Sequence mode Several shots are taken automatically in a row. (→Aperture) M
(→Quick shooting mode)
Shutter time lag Time between the instant the release is fully N
Serial interface Also called →RS232C or RS422 interface. An depressed and the actual moment of capture. This O
→interface which allows peripheral devices such does not include the time when the release is half
as a mouse, →modem, and certain digital cam- depressed to activate (if available) the P
eras to be connected to the computer. Data is autofocus system, etc. Q
transferred serially, which means →bit by bit, one
piece after another, via a connection cable. Also Shutter Priority In this mode, the user can adjust the shutter R
called →COM Port. speed manually and the camera then selects
the aperture setting for the best exposure.
Server The main computer in a →network, responsible Often described as “S” mode on the camera. T
for the management/regulation of all other
computers. U

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SIMM Single In-line Memory Module. A common type SmartMedia SmartMedia cards are small (45 mm x 37 mm x A
of plug-in →RAM memory module for personal storage card 0.76 mm) and light (approximately 2 g) storage
computers. media. The controller is located in the drive B
instead of being incorporated in the card to C
Single lens Camera type that directs the image coming in allow simple construction. SmartMedia cards
reflex camera through the lens up into the viewfinder by means are very affordable and ideal for the storage of D
of a mirror. When the shutter is released the mir- digital photos and music. (→xD-Picture Card)
ror swings up to allow light on the image plane.
For fast sequence shooting and to reduce vibra- SmartMedia Olympus offers various SmartMedia cards with F
tions, some SLR optical systems use a beam split- function cards additional functions for compact and compact
ter (prism) instead of the quick return swinging zoom digital cameras: a template function that G
mirror. The picture seen through the viewfinder is allows photos to be combined with 12 different H
almost 100% identical to the resulting photo. templates, a panorama card which together with
a PC permits up to 10/20 images to be fused to I
Slot Expansion interface in computers, notebooks and create a panoramic photo, a calendar function J
other devices. Expansion cards, e.g. →PC Cards, card that enables the production of personalised
can be plugged or built in here to increase per- calendars, and a title function card for creating K
formance, capacity or the capabilities of the birthday and greetings cards.
Software General term for all computer programs. M
Slow Flash mode that uses a slow shutter speed in
synchronisation combination with a flash. Since the duration of Sound recording Some modern digital cameras enable sound to be N
the flash is far shorter that the selected shutter recorded to either movie sequences or still O
speed, the flash fires at either the beginning (first images. Therefore, through the use of the built-in
curtain) or end (second curtain) of the exposure (or external) microphone, sound effects can be P
time. Because the fired flash freezes action in the added to images. (→movie recording) Q
foreground while capturing background scenes
in low light conditions with slow shutter speed, Spot metering →Exposure metering method whereby the R
the slow synchronisation mode can produce exposure reading is taken from the centre of
particularly attractive, atmospheric shots. (The the frame. This is often used when working with
night scene mode found in some cameras acts backlight. (Digital ESP/selective multi zone T
in a similar fashion.) metering, →reflected-light metering, →exposure
metering, →light metering) U
SLR →Single Lens Reflex. V

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SQ-resolution Standard Quality resolution. Subtractive A special method for the production of colour A
colour mixing prints that involves layering the colours cyan,
SRAM Static RAM. A special type of →RAM that, due magenta, yellow, and black in appropriate B
to its speed, is particularly suited to tasks where proportions, to produce the required colours. C
time is a critical factor. (→additive colour mixing)
SSFDC Solid State Floppy Disc Card. SVGA Super Video Graphics Array. Refers to a display
(→SmartMedia memory card) screen resolution of 800 x 600 →pixels. (→QXGA,
Standard Standard interfaces include serial, parallel, USB
interface and monitor interfaces. (→Interface) Super CCD A CCD type developed by Fujifilm that G
utilises octagonal-shaped pixels arranged in H
Step-up-ring →Lens adapter, with which a filter/conversion an interwoven pattern.
lens with a wider diameter than that of the cam- I
era’s lens is attached. SXGA Super Extended Graphics Array. Describes J
a resolution of 1,280 x 1,024 image →pixels.
Storage Class →USB Mass Storage Class. (→QXGA, →SVGA, →VGA, →UXGA, →XGA) K
Streamer Internal or external drive for data security involv- System camera Camera that can be used with a wide range of
ing a so-called Streamer Band. accessories from the same manufacturer (lens M
converters, external flash, external power source,
Studio flash Stationary, high power flash that is mostly used etc.) N
by advertising and fashion photographers. O
Normally consisting of simply a flash tube and
pilot lamp that shines continuously to enable the P
user to check the exposure, they have no auto- Q
matic metering system and must be adjusted
manually. Studio flashes can be equipped with R
diverse accessories, such as softboxes, filters,
reflectors, Fresnel lenses etc. to achieve special
lighting or effects. These flash systems are T
generally much more powerful than compact
flashes and their output is measured not by a U
guide number but by watts per second (Ws). V
Models over 400 Ws mostly have to be powered
by an external power source. The studio flash is W
connected to the camera via an x-synchronisation X
cable. If several flashes are used, the other units
are activated by an activation light from the first Y
flash unit.

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Title function →SmartMedia function card. A

TCP/IP Transmission Control Protocol over Internet

Tripod Stand to which the camera can be attached

Protocol. Standard →protocol for sending data to hold it steady, especially during slow exposure
packets over the internet or network. The data shots where camera shake must be avoided. Most D
is automatically broken up into small packets. tripods have three legs while professionals prefer
An error correction procedure takes place the more compact but less stable
automatically. one-legged versions. F
Tele All lenses with a focal length of 80 mm (or in True Colour Describes the colour output on a monitor or G
digital cameras, with the equivalent of 80 mm) printer. Requires at least 16 million colour H
or over are classified as tele lenses. Typical nuances.
characteristics of a tele lens are the narrow field I
of view (30° and below depending on focal TruePic Developed by Olympus, the TruePic technology J
length), the short →depth of field and a compres- optimises the image information captured on
sion effect where objects far away and near by the CCD before the data is saved. Employing K
appear to be on one level. Standard tele lenses the algorithm 3-D Cubic, it uses the brightness
are 80 to 200 mm* and super tele lenses are from and colour information of the neighbouring pixels
200 mm* upwards. (→Wide angle, →zoom.) when processing the pixel data. These calcula- M
(* Refers to a 35 mm camera) tions, only possible with the super-fast Risc and
Olympus Asic processor, lead to digital pictures N
Tele converter Lens attachment that extends the focal length. that set standards for picture sharpness, contrast, O
(→Macro converter, →wide-angle converter) true colours and gradation.
Template card →SmartMedia function card. TTL metering Through The Lens metering. Q
TFT Thin Film Technology. Currently the highest quali- TTL flash With TTL flash metering the flash light and R
ty of colour LC-Displays. TFT displays are used in metering ambient light is measured through the lens so
notebooks as well as in digital cameras from the intensity of the flash can be set. All work is
OLYMPUS. done by the camera so the flash does not need T
any metering cells or control circuits. Also, no
Thumbnail The miniature representation of a digital image manual adjustments are necessary. U
that usually serves as a preview function in V
→image editing programs. TWAIN driver Allows the transfer of →scans or digital photos
into →image editing programs. (TWAIN: W
TIFF Tagged Image File Format. A specific, high quality Technology Without An Interesting Name.) X
→file format used for the storage of →digitised
images. Y

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higher bandwidth and is up to 40 times faster A

UART Universal Asynchronous Receiver-Transmitter.
than the original standard. It further benefits from
being backwards compatible with existing USB
technology, so older devices will still work with
Set of chips in a computer regulating data flow USB 2.0.
over the serial interface. D
USB →USB Mass Storage Class.
Underexposure When a shot does not receive enough light AutoConnect
with the result that the scene is too dark. F
USB Mass With USB Mass Storage Class support, the
Unsharp Masking Often abbreviated USM. Describes an image Storage Class camera (or any other compatible device) is G
focusing process. The quality of the result automatically displayed as an external drive. H
depends on the characteristics of the It can then be easily accessed in any program
→algorithm used. as a regular drive. Since most operating systems I
contain the generic Mass Storage Class driver, J
Update An updated version of a software program. the camera is recognised without any driver
having to be installed. Also called USB Storage K
Upgrade A new improved version of hardware or Class or USB AutoConnect.
software that is already available.
USB →USB Mass Storage Class. M
Upload Process of copying a file from a computer Storage Class
to a remote computer. Opposite of download. N
Utility A program that performs special tasks for the O
URL Unified Resource Locator. Address system operating system, for example: file administration,
for internet sites. controlling a digital camera, a CD-ROM drive or P
printer. Q
USB The Universal Serial Bus is probably going to
replace the →serial and →parallel interfaces. UXGA Ultra Extended Graphics Array. This refers to R
USB enables the effortless connection of peri- images with a resolution of 1,600 x 1,280
pheral devices without the need to install cards →pixels. (→QXGA, →SVGA, →SXGA, →VGA,
into the computer or reconfigure parts of the →XGA) T
operating system. The most important advantages
are: the support of Plug and Play, →hot plugging, U
automatic configuration of external devices upon V
connection (no re-start necessary), faster data
transfer and the possible operation of up to 127 W
devices from a single port. USB 2.0 uses a much X

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VGA Video Graphics Array. Refers to a display screen
White balance The adjustment of a digital camera to the respec-
with a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels. (→QXGA, tive type of light (→colour temerature) such as
→SVGA, →SXGA, →UXGA, →XGA) daylight, overcast, tungsten, and fluorescent light D
for even truer colours, or – on the other hand –
Video output Interface that connects a digital camera with create a different, striking effect.
a TV or video recorder. F
Wide angle Wide angle lenses are those with focal lengths
Video CCD Describes a →CCD specially developed for of 35 mm* and lower. The typical qualities of G
television and video, also used in digital still these lenses are a wide viewing angle, (60° to H
cameras. (→Progressive CCD) 180°) and a large →depth of field. Standard wide
angle lenses are classified as having focal lengths I
Vignetting Fading off the sides of a picture into plain white of 28 to 35 mm*; super wide angle lenses have J
or black instead of having abrupt edges. Also values of 24 mm* or less. (→Tele, →zoom)
unintentional loss of brightness at the edge of (* Refers to a 35 mm camera) K
the image. →Wide angle lenses are particularly
susceptible. However, the problem can be more Wide-angle Lens attachment that reduces the focal length.
or less avoided by removing the elements causing converter (→Macro converter, →tele converter) M
the effect, such as a filter with a frame that is too
large or ill-fitting →lens hood. Windows Graphic-based operating environment developed N
(95/98/2000/ by Microsoft. O
Virus Describes a part of a computer program that usu- NT/XP/ME)
ally causes damage or destruction of software P
and/or data. World Wide Web Currently the most popular service offered Q
through the internet. The →WWW provides
the possibility to transmit files with multimedia R
content (texts, sounds, pictures).
Write cancel This mode allows image data in the buffer memory T
to be deleted and cancels the saving process to
the memory card. The camera is thereby immedi- U
ately ready to shoot again. This function is espe- V
cially useful in cameras with high-speed sequence
shooting. W
WWW →World Wide Web.

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xD-Picture Card An innovative memory card standard developed
.ZIP →File format used for data compression.
by Olympus and Fujifilm, launched in 2002.
Particularly small digital memory media for ZIP-Drive A device that allows the storage of up to D
digital cameras that is very durable and robust, 750 MB of data.
and allows speedy data transfer rates. Capacities
of up to 8 GB will be possible in the future. Zoom lens A type of lens that allows the photographer to get F
(Max. available capacity 2002: 256 MB). closer (zoom) to a subject. By adjusting the focal
length (manually or mechanically), the degree G
XGA Extended Graphics Array. A graphics standard of magnification can be altered. This feature is H
developed by IBM, which allows the display of particularly useful for picking out subjects at a
1,024 x 768 →pixels with up to 65,535 colours. distance. The zooming power of a camera can I
(→SVGA, →SXGA, →UXGA, →VGA) usually be read on its lens; 3x (e.g. 35 - 105 mm*) J
is a common zoom level that provides good
X-synch cable Cable for connecting a non-dedicated flash or magnification. However, other cameras offer up K
studio flash. The cable only passes the command to 10x magnification or more, which increases
to fire and no other instructions. the focal length ten times (e.g. 38 – 380 mm*).
When using such high magnification lenses, an M
optical image stabiliser or tripod help to ensure
sharp, clear results. (→Lenses, →tele, →wide, N
Yahoo! Well-known internet search engine.
→digital zoom, →focal length)
(* Refers to a 35 mm camera)

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