When is a Point & Shoot Camera Enough?

The following post is by avid portrait photographer, Alan Morris, who shares his thoughts on if and when a point and shoot camera will do just fine. Learn more about Alan at the end of this post.

You don’t always need a DSLR to get good photographs. I own and love my Nikon D700 and D200 and use them for all types of event and wedding photography. The image quality is outstanding. However, when I am traveling or don’t need the high performance of these cameras, I usually use a Canon G9 or Fuji F200EXR. The Canon takes great images and The Fuji fits easily in my pocket.

I recently went to Chicago for a short vacation and took only my Fuji. The images are fine and I am not going to print anything larger than 5 x 7.

Two weeks ago we went to a wedding in the Berkshires and I took my Fuji and Flip Mino video camera. Both performed extremely well. The professional photographers used traditional gear. My shots were just snap shots and small clips which I put together for the wedding couple.

For web viewing, these small cameras are just fine.

So to answer my own question: A point and shoot camera is enough most of the time.

The best camera is always the one you have with you.

Alan has been a photography enthusiast since he worked on the high school year book in the 1950’s. He worked in a camera store as a teenager and fell in love with the very first 35mm SLRs from Canon and Nikon.  Having 3 children and 5 grandchildren, Alan particularly enjoys photographing significant events in peoples lives: births, birthdays, parties, weddings, charitable events, childrens activities.

In Alan’s words: “I think photography lends itself especially well to providing a visual history. My approach is to a session is to tell a story in a series of still photographs.  I think the next evolution will be combining video and stills and am working on a couple of projects integrating the two. You will see a couple of examples on the website. This is still a work in process.”  To connect with Alan and see more of his work, visit his website at www.lakemercedphoto.com.



  1. Tramb says

    I think you’re not correct. You made an assumption based on daylight photos, but everyone knows – point’n’shoot cameras not good in bad conditions: low light causing lots of noise and almost no auto focus (and do manual focus in p’n’s cameras is like… you know.. ;-)). So I think you have to quick answer to your question, and this answer should be reviewed one more time..

  2. says

    Point and Shoot Camera are only good at daylight conditions, bad lighting makes the images blurry and you need to count the pictures colors. Although this type of camera are handy on certain occasions like pictures you need to take on a AW MOMENT.

  3. leo says

    Point and shoot digital camera’s are the worst camera’s the digital revolution brought us. Every point and shoot analog camera was better. You might just as well take photo’s with you mobile phone if space is an issue. You need daylight, be happy with photo’s with a dof from beginning till end and only to be used at 80 iso. With very poor dynamic range and so on. The only way to make a point and shoot camera with reasonable quality, is to increase the size of the sensor. Like Sigma did with there DP1 and DP2. It is still no Point and Shoot like a analog Contax T3, but the quality is much much better. Way to go Sigma! Olympus brought recently the Pen, also a small camera with a reasonable sized sensor. I for see that many manufactures will follow.

  4. OzziMike says

    Whoa folks! Aren’t we being a little unfair on Alan? He said 5×7’s and although neither of the excellent compact camera’s he mentioned aren’t in
    the same league as any of today’s DSLR’s, they do make great images within
    their limitations. A slow shutter speed, low ISO & the built in flash will
    often get great results up to 8×10.

    Sure a DSLR kills them for speed and noise – but that’s not the point. These little cameras can go where a DSLR is neither possible nor welcome. I use both full and compact sensor DSLR’s and love them, but they don’t fit on my belt and go to work with me. It’s all about capturing what’s there – not the tool you do it with. Good on you Alan.