DSLR Cameras vs. Point-and-Shoot Digital Cameras


Not sure whether to purchase a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera or a point-and-shoot digital camera?  Typically, if you’re a casual shooter, you’ll probably want a point-and-shoot. If you’re serious about your photo taking skills, you’ll probably want a DSLR. Are you somewhere in the middle?  If so, read on to learn the benefits of both cameras…. then decide which suites you best!

Benefits of Using a DSLR Camera:

Image Quality

DSLR cameras typically have much larger image sensors. Having a big sensor helps to capture more pixels and results in better image quality.


Generally DSLR cameras are fast when it comes to start up, focusing, and shutter lag. They are capable of capturing 10 frames per second.

Optical View Finder

DSLR cameras have a reflex mirror, which means you look through the lens, instead of a see-through hole in the camera. What you see is generally what you get.

Manual Controls

 DSLR cameras are made in the belief that the photographer wants to have the ability to control the settings. Once you learn how to use those controls, you can quickly change settings as necessary.

Good Investment

DSLRs do not get upgraded as often as point-and-shoot cameras, so they hold their value. You don’t have worry about getting the latest model. However, if you do choose to upgrade later the lenses you buy are compatible with other DSLR camera bodies.

Various Lenses

There is a wide array of lenses that can be mounted and used on DSLRs, from super wide angle to telephoto, depending on your needs. Not being limited to just one lens can open a whole world of possibilities.

Depth of Field

You are in control of isolating foreground from background or bringing everything in focus through aperture control of the lens. Some portrait and telephoto lenses can really isolate your images and create a creamy and beautiful background blur, also known as “bokeh”

Weather Sealing


Forget about using a point-and-shoot in challenging weather conditions. While point and shoot cameras are suited for normal use, higher-end DSLRs can withstand dust, moisture, rain, snow, and severely cold weather. If you enjoy taking photographs of nature and landscapes, this may be something to keep in mind.


Benefits of Using a Point-and-Shoot Digital Camera:


Size and Weight


Most point-and-shoot cameras are slim and light. You can easily slip these cameras into a pocket or a purse and carry them anywhere. They are perfect for travel.


Fixed Lens


All point-and-shoot cameras come with fixed lenses. There’s no stress changing lenses or figuring out which lens to use.


Auto Mode


The quality of images produced in point-and-shoot cameras vary, but for the most part auto mode works very well. Point-and-shoot cameras are pretty well optimized for this type of shooting.


Depth of Field


 Point-and-shoot cameras typically can’t separate foreground from background, bringing everything into focus and making the entire scene look sharp. Whether this is good or bad is subjective depending upon the photographer.


LCD Screen


Point-and-shoot cameras have an LCD Screen which will display the entire frame that sensors will capture. Optical viewfinders in other cameras will only display 90-95% of the image. Causing you to lose a small percentage of the image as you look through, but with the LCD Screen of a point-and-shoot,  you don’t lose anything.




Point-and-shoot cameras are cheaper, but then again, if you buy the top quality point-and-shoot camera on the market you will be spending about the same as you would on a DSLR camera. Point-and-shoots also tend to be upgraded more often than DSLRs, so it’s important to take into consideration how often you may want to purchase a new camera.



I hope this helps you with the decision making process. If you still have more questions on DSLR cameras and point-and-shoot digital cameras stop into a P.C. Richard and Son Superstore and one of expert sales representatives will be happy to help you. Happy snapping!


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7 Great Mother’s Day Gifts for less than $100

Show your mother how much you appreciate her this year with a great gift from P.C. Richard & Son! We have some superb electronics for under $100 that your mom is sure to appreciate. If you’re looking for a fitting gift you know she’ll use, keep reading!

Mp3 Player
Mp3 players are the most convenient way for Mom to take her favorite music with her. Many also come with radio tuners, so if she gets bored of what she had on there (which would be difficult as many Mp3 players under $100 can have as much as 8GB of storage, or hold about 1,750 songs), she can still listen to something new. Plus, they come in great colors! You can check out all the MP3 players we have available here, but we highly recommend the Apple 2GB Pink iPod Shuffle or Lyra 8GB MP3 Player for Mom.

Bose Headphones
If your mom already has an MP3 player and uses it often, consider upgrading her headphones to get the most out of her music. People with portable music players are constantly listening to them on the go, so they should be equipped with comfortable headphones with the best sound quality possible. Enter the Bose TRIPORT ear buds. Ear buds help drown out surrounding noise and this model comes with removable silicone tips to provide an accurate, comfortable fit. The sound quality of Bose products can’t be beat, and Mom will really appreciate them.

Outdoor Speakers
Outdoor speakers are a particularly good gift if you’re planning on having an outdoor Mother’s Day party, as the Mom can use them right away. Hook them up to a stereo system or portable audio player and enjoy the sound quality. If it rains, don’t worry—outdoor speakers are made for bad weather, which makes them much better to use outside than regular speakers. You can choose between indoor/outdoor speakers that look like speakers themselves or like rocks to blend in with your mom’s outdoor landscape.

Point & Shoot Digital Camera
If Mom already has a point-and-shoot digital camera, think about what model it is. How old is it? Does the battery still hold a charge? Does it take quality pictures? It may be time to purchase a new one. You’ll see what a difference an increase in megapixels can make (especially if your mother tends to take pictures from 500 feet away from what they’re shooting—you can zoom in and crop the picture and still have a great photo). Like MP3 players, these cameras come in a variety of colors so you can choose her favorite.

Digital Photo Frame
So few photos are printed these days and are never enjoyed off the camera’s memory card, so why not change that? Relive memories with a digital frame that constantly changes with a new picture. Transferring photos to and from the frame is easy with a computer, or you can slide a memory card right in– just check to make sure the photo frame you select has a slot for the memory card type your mom uses. Many photo frames also play music and movies and come with built-in speakers, so any media taken by a digital camera will be supported. You can even pre-load the frame with pictures you already have and REALLY personalize the gift!

Universal Remote
These days many people have a remote for the TV, cable box, DVD player, Blu-Ray player, audio/surround sound system, and more. These universal remotes are easily condensed into one with a universal remote that allows you to execute the same functions as their originals. Mom’s days of searching through couch cushions for 27 different remotes are numbered! We especially recommend the Logitech Harmony 510, which was also previously covered on our blog.

Wireless Keyboard and Mouse
Alleviate the headache and sloppiness of wires with a wireless keyboard and mouse for your mom’s computer. So many of us spend countless hours on the computer so you know that this gift, while perhaps not incredibly exciting, will be appreciated and put to good use. They’re easy to set up, too—just plug the USB adapter into the back of the computer, wirelessly link the devices together and you’re all set.

What are you getting your mom this Mother’s Day? Let us know in the comments.


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How to: use the different modes on your digital camera

Our “How To” series of blog posts are tips and tricks on getting the most out of your products available from P.C. Richard & Son. For an archive of past How To guides, click here.

So, you have a point-and-shoot digital camera and like to take pictures while you’re out on the town, at family functions, and on vacation, right? I’m sure you’ve seen, either on your camera’s dial or in the menu system, a range of photo-taking modes. Do you know what each mode does? Do you use them? If not, you may want to explore these features to get the most out of your digital camera. Here are some automatic settings you’d usually find on your camera and how best to use them.

Automatic Mode
This should be the mode you’ve been using if you haven’t fully explored your other options yet. Automatic mode is just that—automatic. It determines the best focus, flash, white balance, etc. based on the environment lighting. This is generally acceptable in most situations, but your camera misses some key points of information in this mode. Are you taking pictures of a sporting event with fast movement? Are you taking pictures of fireworks? These specialized situations are when other modes come in handy the most.

Portrait Mode
Another rather self-explanatory mode, this setting is best for taking a photograph of a single subject, or portrait. It focuses on what’s in the foreground and keeps the background out of focus. This brings more attention to your subject and portrays them in a softer way.

Macro Mode

Macro mode is perfect for photographing small objects such as flowers, handmade jewelry/crafts, and insects, or close-ups on larger objects like the buttons of a flute. This setting has a very small margin where your object will be in focus, so hold your camera very close. I recommend turning your flash off while using this mode, or your photograph will be very washed out.

Landscape Mode
This is a perfect vacation mode to use for those beach, mountain or hotel view shots. This setting makes sure that it keeps as much in focus as possible, so make sure to hold your camera steady (using a tripod or holding your breath is best) as it may use a slower shutter speed and any movement of the camera may result in a blurry picture.

Action/Sports Mode
Action, or sports mode increases your camera’s shutter speed, which eliminates blur in action shots. This makes it perfect for games, pets, cars, boats, or anything that moves.

Night Mode
Use night mode for those night, dark restaurant or low-light party shots to brighten your picture as much as possible. This mode really brings out background lights in an environment and can make really beautiful shots. Because night mode needs a longer shutter speed to work, a tripod or steady surface is recommended.

Beach/Snow/Fireworks Modes
These are other self-explanatory modes that help boost the quality of shots in the aforementioned environments.

You can improve the overall quality of your pictures by experimenting with these modes that come with most digital cameras. What modes do you use on your camera most often?


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