“Digital Single Lens Reflex” is the abbreviation for “Digital Single Lens Reflex.” In layman’s terms, a DSLR is a digital camera that uses a mirror mechanism to either redirect light from a camera lens to an optical viewfinder (which is an eyepiece on the back of the camera that one looks through to see what they’re photographing) or to allow light to completely move onto the image sensor (which captures the image) by shifting the mirror out of the way. While single lens reflex cameras with film as the recording medium have been available in various shapes and forms since the 19th century, the first commercial digital SLR with an image sensor appeared in 1991.DSLR cameras, unlike point-and-shoot and phone cameras, usually use interchangeable lenses.

1) What DSLR Cameras Consist Of:

2) How DSLR Cameras Work:

When you look through the back of a DSLR camera’s viewfinder / eyepiece, everything you see is passed through the lens attached to the camera, which means you might be looking at just what you’re going to film. Light from the scene you’re trying to photograph passes through the lens and through a reflex mirror (#2) inside the camera chamber, which then forwards the light vertically to an optical element known as a “pentaprism” (#7). The pentaprism then transforms the vertical light to horizontal light by focusing it through two separate mirrors directly into the viewfinder (#8).


The reflex mirror (#2) swings upwards when you take a frame, blocking the vertical pathway and allowing the light to pass through directly. The shutter (#3) then opens, allowing light to enter the image sensor (#4). The shutter (#3) remains open for as long as the image sensor (#4) needs to record the image, after which the shutter (#3) closes and the reflex mirror (#2) returns to its 45-degree angle to continue redirecting light through the viewfinder.

Clearly, the procedure does not end there. Following that, the camera performs a lot of complex image processing. The camera processor reads the data from the image sensor, converts it to a usable format, and then saves it to a memory card. The entire process takes just a few seconds, and some experienced DSLRs can do it 11 times or more in a single second!

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