DPReview.com

Published Date
01 - Feb - 2005
| Last Updated
01 - Feb - 2005
 
DPReview.com
Digital photography has evolved enough to be present at our beck and call. With digital cameras (whether as standalone devices or as part of another device) are practically with everyone. While this has given birth to some enthusiasts, most of those who are migrating to digicams are amateur or hobby photographers who are dumping the film camera.

So naturally, this brings with it plenty of questions such as "What is a megapixel?," "What is White Balance?", "What type of card works with my camera?" or even "Which camera should I buy?" Answers to these and many more questions on digital cameras are answered in painstaking detail at www.dpreview.com.

Started in 1998 in the early days of digital photography and still run by London-based photo-enthusiast and Web designer Phil Askey, the site has come a long way and has consistently been recognised for the quality of its reviews.

Welcome Home
One look at the site and you know where everything is. It's like coming home! The site is a veritable encyclopaedia on digital cameras. Simply find your way to the right links and you can read up on almost all the cameras to have ever hit the shelves. The site also offers a timeline from 1995.

The never-ending drop down menu


The DPR homepage has all the necessary links

Although a hard claim to digest, they have about 90 per cent of the cameras to have ever left the manufacturing line listed on the site, complete with specs and even prices! The timeline, in fact, is one of the most interesting sections on the site and lets you compare the changes in specs and prices over the last 10 years-and you realise that while prices have stagnated, features and capabilities have improved dramatically.

The site is not the only one around to offer side-by-side comparisons of cameras, but is perhaps the best of the lot. Unfortunately, you can only compare two cameras at a time. So if you were considering a third camera as a potential buy, elimination of candidates is the way to go!

Newsworthy
With new digital cameras becoming available almost daily, it can be quite a task to search for the best available. DPR opens with the news page and offers up-to-the-minute news that is continuously updated. Reviews of cameras "in-production" are also a regular feature, and can be handy to keep you abreast of developments when considering a buy. 

A typical review on the site includes an introduction to a camera, its design aspects, specifications, features, tests and comparisons. Photo galleries created using older cameras are also available, and can be used as a benchmark when making a buying decision. Images accompanying the reviews are not just good-they're great! The sample photos and test images are accurate and act as a good guide to the camera in question.

The site is also home to many active forums where users can seek information and tips from other users. Forums can also be specific to camera models and not just pertaining to a manufacturer or technology.

Learning The Ropes
An important facet of digital photography is that the technology changes fast. While 3 megapixel was "in" last year, 5 megapixel seems to be the norm this year. What does that mean to you? How does it affect you? Will you need to reconfigure your printer? Will you need different media for printing to ensure optimum quality? Will the consumption of ink be more? Will file sizes increase?

Keeping up with this can be tough if you don't know where to look for the information. DPReview.com also offers the "Learn" and "Glossary" sections, but are unfortunately the weakest "links" on the site. Basic technology information apart, there isn't much to help the novice understand digital cameras or photography in general. So, only if you know your basics and want a second opinion on what camera to buy, this is the right place. 

Under Exposure
It's been almost 10 years that the site has been in existence. For as long as we can remember, it has been looking and feeling the same. Yes, it maintains its familiarity, but this is slightly contradictory to what it caters to-constant change. The one thing that does remain consistently good, though, is that the site remains free.


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