Skip to main content

ExploreCams pulls metadata from photo sharing sites to show most popular cameras

Canon EOS 5DS R
Jessica Lee Star/Digital Trends
Every time you press the shutter, your camera not only captures the photograph, it also records a lot of data that’s stored inside the image file.

This information is referred to as metadata. And when viewed inside a comparable program, it will show you almost every piece of detail about the image, from shutter speed to GPS location of where you captured the image — if you have a GPS-enabled camera.

Although this information can be manually removed or scrubbed out by social media sites, much of it is retained when uploading it to photography hosting and sharing sites, as a way to better help other photographers understand how an image was captured and what gear was used.

Using this publicly available information, a team of developers created ExploreCams, a mesmerizing website that pulls metadata from photographs hosted Flickr, 500px, Pixabay, and others to show off live statistics of the most popular cameras and settings used by photographers around the globe.

To do this, ExploreCams relies on metadata reading tool ExifTool. Using this, ExploreCams performs weekly refreshes and updates its databases and infographics accordingly. Already, over six million images have been indexed.

The results, which are shown off in beautiful interactive graphs, aren’t that surprising if you’ve been around the photography world long enough. Canon holds the lead for the most commonly used camera, with Nikon coming in a close second. Sony rounds out the top three, while Apple — led by its latest iOS devices — comes in at fourth.

As for lenses, it appears as though kit lenses take the top spot for most manufacturers. Not exactly surprising considering the lenses are packaged with the camera bodies and offer an affordable starting point.

It’s easy to get lost in the data, so consider yourself warned if you want to dive down the ExploreCam rabbit hole. If you have time to burn, head on over and check it out in its entirety.

Editors' Recommendations

Gannon Burgett
DJI’s 2022 drone contest offers record prize pool
A photo taken from a drone.

Leading drone maker DJI has teamed up with the SkyPixel online community for its eighth annual photo and video contest.

Whether you’re an experienced drone pilot or an absolute beginner still finding your way, the contest is the perfect opportunity to send your machine skyward in a test of your creative skills.

Read more
How $80 of photo processing software magically saved me thousands
photo editing topaz labs denoise ai phil camera

It's a good time to be a photographer, whether you're just starting out and really don't have any idea what you're doing, or if you're a seasoned pro looking to try something new.

The gear is better than ever, making even entry-level bodies better than what the previous generation started out with. Software options make cataloging and processing your photos faster and less destructive, so you can revisit things for years and give old pics new life.

Read more
Sony A7 III mirorless camera is $300 off for Black Friday
Sony Alpha a7 III Mirrorless front view.

There are a lot of great Best Buy Black Friday deals going on right now, and whether you're looking for TVs, laptops, or even headphones, there's a little something for everybody. Of course, many folks may not realize that Best Buy has some fantastic deals on high-end photography gear, such as this Sony Alpha a7 III mirrorless camera. While it usually goes for a whopping $2,200, Best Buy had brought it down to $1,900, and while that relatively doesn't seem like much, you could always spend the $300 savings on a new lens.

Why you should buy the Sony Alpha a7 III
The Sony Alpha a7 III is a camera with so much tech that it might as well be three different cameras. It has excellent dynamic range, low-light performance, and high-speed performance, and the full-frame sensors make the images look absolutely stunning. Interestingly, the a7 III manages to do an excellent job at both low and high ISOs, the latter of which can go as high as 51,200 non-boosted, which, granted, adds a lot of noise, but noise reduction helps with that. As for the video, well, sadly, it's not as impressive, at least in terms of advancements in image quality, and while it can do 8-bit 4K at 30 frames per second, it's no longer ahead of the pack in that regard, like the Panasonic Lumix GH5 is with its 400Mbps 10-bit codec and 60-fps 4K.

Read more