Getting into Digital Imaging

Two of the most common questions we hear are, “How do I get started in Digital Imaging?” and “What digital camera should I buy?” By providing answers to these questions, we hope to break down the perceived barriers that stop people from getting into digital imaging.

Assumptions vs Fact

The prevalent assumption is that you need to invest a lot of money and learn complicated technologies to do effective dental imaging.  Guess what? That is simply not true. Why do people feel this way? Probably because the first person they ask is the wrong person, namely, their dental supply rep. The typical response will consist of an Intraoral camera. What if I told you that for the cost of many Intraoral cameras, you could purchase software, a good camera and a computer? You can, and here is how.

The Right Software

Our Imaging Lite software is the perfect software to get started. Don’t let the word ‘Lite’ fool you, this program can do very impressive things. Considering that our Imaging Lite is only a little bit more than the cost of a bridge to a 3rd party software (a cost your dental rep usually won’t tell you about), it’s pretty much a no-brainer. Beyond the cost, the integration you will get with Tracker, Charting and T-Word is not available any other way. Together with our Wi-Fi capability, Imaging gives you the Work Smart features you simply can’t get anywhere else.

IntraOral Cameras

If the high cost of using an intraoral cameras has turned you off the idea, you are not alone. The Smartcam might change your attitude towards intraoral cameras.

Lights, Camera, Action!

Seasoned dental imaging users know that the key to great dental images is in the lighting. They also know that the traditional methods of getting the right lighting are very expensive and not user friendly. We have done a great deal of research to bring our clients different options. The traditional thinking is that you need an expensive SLR camera with a ring flash to do it right. True, this is one way, but it is not the only way. If you plan on having your staff take the pictures (and really, your time should not be wasted by taking pictures) then you need to provide easy-to-use solutions for doing this. Here are some options:


For ease of use, you want to use point-and-shoot cameras. All of the camera options we have listed below are point-and-shoot cameras. But, we have gone out and specifically picked out models that work best for dental imaging.

Fuji HS20

Canon PowerShot G series –A client of ours who has been doing cosmetic imaging for quite some time had rave reviews for the G9. Current generation is the G11. Quite simply this is the best point and shoot camera for dental imaging. Retails for about $550

Don’t forget that today’s cameras come standard with 8 to 12 MegaPixel resolution, which is way more than you need. Don’t forget to change the settings on your camera down to 4 or 5 megapixels. More on the megapixel craze.


Constant LED lighting is far superior to a flash. This is because the lighting is activated as you line up your shot rather than blasted out (such as a ring flash). This means that you can preview the shot and what you see is what you get! Proper lighting means that your image will be in focus all the way from the front to the back of the patient’s mouth.

If you want to take it to the next level, then we recommend the looking at the SmartFlash system. These systems provide a constant light source that will illuminate the dentition to provide you with sharp focus on all the dentition all the way to the back

Please contact John Legourdas at The Bridge Network if you are interested in any of these lighting systems.

Efficient Acquisition – Wireless and Instant

Imaging is the only system that allows you to use a digital camera with the revolutionary Eye-Fi wireless memory card. Imagine being able to take a picture, seconds later it appears on your screen, and is saved to your Imaging software for the current patient. Imaging does this! We’ve worked with dentists to make the digital imaging experience as effective as possible and found that one of the biggest obstacles encountered was transferring images from the camera to the computer. It is this type of forward-thinking that puts The Bridge Network at the forefront of dental software. Contact John Legourdas at The Bridge Network if you are interested in taking advantage of this awesome functionality.


You are going to need mirrors to take your photos. Most people are already familiar with the occlusal mirrors. People are not as familiar with the other useful mirrors, particularly the buccal mirror.



The buccal mirror allows you to get easy shots of the buccal surface on the posterior molars – something that was considered impossible before with macro photography. Our mirrors provide an outstanding image with their ‘Ultrabrite’ coatings and users love the silicone grip on the extra long handles. There is no mirror in the industry that is easier to use.