The purpose of this study was to evaluate seven digital cameras for their ability to adequately capture quality radiographic images and their relative cost effectiveness. Radiographs of line pair (LP) phantoms (ranging from 0.6 to 16.6 LP/mm) and a 20-step contrast phantom were photographed at a near distance of 30.0 cm and a far distance (determined for each camera) at which a full 14 x 17 in film filled the viewfinder. Of the seven cameras tested, the Canon EOS-D30 consistently performed the best in LP/mm resolved (7.7 at close distance, 1.4 at far distance) and in contrast latitude (all 20 steps at both close and far distances). The Canon EOS-D30, determined to be the best camera used in this study for photographing radiographic images, is also the most expensive camera that was used. Two cameras, the Nikon Coolpix 995 and the Sony DSC-F707, were very close to the Canon in performance at considerably less cost. Certain inexpensive cameras may not be acceptable choices for teleradiology.