Digital SLR Camera Basics

P

PAL

An abbreviation of “Phase Alternating Line”, PAL is a video standard used in much of Western Europe, Brazil, Australia, most Middle Eastern and ASEAN countries, and much of Africa.

See also: NTSC

pentamirror

A mirror that reflects light from the viewfinder screen into the viewfinder eyepiece window.

pentaprism

A glass prism that refracts light from the viewfinder screen into the viewfinder eyepiece window.

peripheral illumination

The amount of light at the edges of an image. A “loss of peripheral illumination” is associated with the progressive darkening of an image from the center outwards.

perspective

A visual effect that causes objects to appear smaller as their distance from the viewer increases. If lenses with different focal lengths are used to photograph a subject at the same apparent size but at different distances from the camera, the apparent distance to the background will also change.

phase-detection autofocus

A method for detecting the degree of focus using a specialized autofocus sensor.

See also: contrast-detect autofocus

PictBridge

A standard that allows digital cameras to be connected directly to a compatible printer and the photographs stored on the camera memory card to be printed without use of a computer.

pixel count

The number of picture elements (pixels) in an image sensor.

portrait

A photograph with a human subject or human subjects.

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