How to pick a cost effective, quality digital camera

Apr 2, 2012, 8:16 a.m.

Now that retirement has given you the extra time to get out and travel and see the world, it's probably time to invest in a new digital camera to make sure all of those great vacation memories are captured. Nowadays the best compact digital camera can be had at a bargain. All of the camera jargon can be kind of confusing if you are not familiar with the terminology, but with a few pointers, finding the best compact digital camera is a snap!

The easiest and best compact digital camera is a point and shoot loaded with lots of fun features to help take the best pictures. When folks compare digital cameras, it's important to know which features make the best compact digital cameras and which are worth paying a little extra for.

Check out the explanation of the features below to help compare digital cameras and assist in selecting the best compact digital camera.

Zoom -- Optical or Digital?

There are two kinds of zoom -- optical and digital. Optical zoom is designed to bring the photographer closer to the subject through the view finder. Digital zoom actually creates an illusion that the photographer is closer to the subject and fills in extra pixels accordingly. Optical zoom is a major feature to consider when people compare digital cameras.

Megapixels -- Printing Large Photos

Megapixels refer to the little square components that digital photos are made of. Meaning a million pixels, megapixels are the way to express the exact amount of color details that are in digital photos. The best compact digital camera will have more megapixels, however megapixels are only super important to those who want to enlarge their 4x6 photos to larger sizes or crop a photo and enlarge that section.

Image Stabilization

The best compact digital camera will typically come with i mage stabilization, a technology that helps to prevent blurry photos that occur from shaky hands and from slow shutter speeds in low light conditions. Other Fun Features to Consider When it's Time to Compare Digital Cameras Most new digital cameras offer auto scene, which detects the kind of photo being taken and selects the right mode for the shot. Face Detection is another great feature that automatically detects faces in the shot and adjusts the lighting and focus. Some of the best compact digital camera choices even have a smile shutter feature that will not shoot the photo unless the subject is smiling.

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