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What is the difference between digital and optical zoom?

Optical zoom is a “true” ¬†zoom, like you would get on a film camera. It means that the lens extends and the optics within the camera zoom in on the scene. Digital zoom is a “crop” zoom. The camera enlarges the center of the frame and clips away the edges. You could get the same result by cropping the image on your computer and enlarging it. So what are the pros and cons of each? Optical Zoom Pros Image quality is maintained even when zoomed in Zooming in changes the perspective of the image Cons More expensive Adds weight to the camera Digital Zoom Pros Cheap Adds no weight or bulk to camera Cons Reduces image quality by literally cropping away some of your megapixel rating Could just as easily be done on a computer later if needed Artificial...

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