In the past, savvy remodelers kept a Polaroid camera on the job site to document job progress or any significant event. Digital cameras take this practice to another level.
The most obvious benefit, according to Michael Aliota of Aliota Bros. in New Berlin, Wis., is the long-term cost savings in film and the speed with which you can view photos taken. Other benefits include better zoom capability and image quality. In addition, images can be stored on the camera’s disc or moved to a floppy disc, a compact disc or your computer’s hard drive. Expect to pay about $400 for a decent digital camera, and look for the following.
Image quality: With digital cameras, the number of pixels dictates picture quality. The more, the better — and the more expensive. For portfolios, brochures and the like, a minimum of 3.3 megapixels is recommended.
Zoom features: For shooting close-up details, make sure the camera comes with an optical zoom. Don’t be sold on the digital zoom, which often results in pixilated images. Storage capacity: Most cameras come with minimal storage capacity to keep down the cost. Be careful not to sacrifice the convenience of more memory to save a few bucks, but don’t go overboard either. Anything less than 64 megabytes might leave you shortchanged when storing images, and that can be a hassle in the field.