FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

DSLR vs. Cellphone Cameras

by Daphne Gould

May 20, 2016

© Ivan23g | Dreamstime

Products / Entertainment

Over the past few years, phone cameras have undergone dramatic changes in quality. Just a few short years ago, iPhones were packed with 2MP rear-facing cameras and no front-facing camera. On the latest model, you get a 12MP camera and a 5MP front-facing camera. This is a dramatic improvement, but is it enough for you to give up a camera when traveling entirely? Unless you are a professional photographer, you may be able to get away without one. In short, the answer depends on your needs.


The Canon EOS Rebel T6i, one of the most popular DSLR cameras for casual photographers, has twice the megapixels of most cell phone cameras and a noticeably higher pixel density — with 24 MP and 500 ppi. Because of this, there is no doubt the quality is superior overall. If you plan to take low-lighting photos or landscape scenery, keep your DSLR handy. DSLR models allow more light into the photo, giving a brighter, more colorful image that a smartphone cannot match.


One of the main drawbacks of carrying a digital camera when traveling is size. While a smartphone can fit in your pocket, a DSLR requires a camera bag fit for multiple lenses, the body and other protective gear such as covers and cases. This can easily amount to a full carry-on, and that can be costly when flying. There is also the worry of your camera getting bounced around in transit — this is why most airlines recommend extra padding for fragile carry-ons such as large cameras.


If you’re just looking for some photos to share on social media or a blog, a top-notch smartphone camera like that found on the new iPhone SE or Galaxy S7 will probably be sufficient. For printouts, a DSLR would be preferable. While there is no question of the quality difference between a DSLR and a typical smartphone camera, the convenience of a cellphone does pack a fairly strong punch in terms of quality.



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