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What Is Frames Per Second (FPS) in Photography?

Frames per second in photography describes how fast a camera can take consecutive images in quick succession. For example, if the camera has a FPS of 12 FPS then that means the camera can theoretically take 12 exposures per second. 

A photographer may see this as a selling point if they are likely to be taking bursts of continuous shots back to back to capture action.

For example, if you are a sports or wildlife photographer it is likely that your subject will be moving fast and you may want to take a series of shots in quick succession to make sure you get the perfect shot.

The maximum FPS is normally included in the specifications of a camera and sometimes the FPS of a camera is higher with the use of a battery grip.

How Does FPS Affect a Photo?

FPS itself will not affect the quality of a photo but you will need to consider the speed of how you take your photos and balance it with other things like your exposure and focusing abilities.

If you need a slow shutter speed, the FPS is irrelevant because even if your camera is able to shoot 6 FPS you will not want to do that if you need a shutter speed of 1 second per exposure.

Another thing to consider is the focusing. If you are manual focusing then it may be that the subject is in perfect focus for the first frame or two, but it can move out of frame for the next few frames that you capture unless you are manually adjusting the focus as the subject moves. 

On the other hand, if you are using autofocus then you may need to consider how quickly your camera can refocus between exposures.

The main takeaway with FPS for photography is that having a higher FPS will give you a higher chance of capturing a shot that is easy to miss.