Megapixels and Prints

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by mcoppadge, Nov 29, 2005.

  1. mcoppadge

    mcoppadge TPF Noob!

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    I'm looking at buying a digital camera (my own, being that the one I use now belongs to my dad). I'm looking at the Nikon [ame="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BY52NK/sr=1-4/qid=1133305951/ref=sr_1_4/104-6834664-8966365?%5Fencoding=UTF8"]D200[/ame], which isn't out yet. I like that one mostly because it has 10.2 megapixels, which is enough to create larger-sized prints. However, the D200 is expensive, maybe more than I can afford. I am looking also at the [ame="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BWE4TK/sr=1-4/qid=1133305755/ref=sr_1_4/104-6834664-8966365?%5Fencoding=UTF8"]D50[/ame], whose megapixel count is 6.1. Is 6.1 enough to make decently large prints and still maintain 100% quality? If you have any examples of photos that would be helpful, that would be great. Or if you have one of the above cameras, I'd appreciate hearing some feedback about it.
     
  2. Picksure

    Picksure TPF Noob!

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    I use photo lab for my pics. They have a chart for minimun print resolution.

    click here to view.

    I have done a 11x14, and it came out a beauty with my 4mp camera. Hope this helps.
     
  3. Marctwo

    Marctwo TPF Noob!

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    Don't even think about megapixels - it's really not an issue. Just think about the features, the handling, the feel... what's important to you?
     
  4. mcoppadge

    mcoppadge TPF Noob!

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    Megapixels.

    I think I'm decent enough that I'm not going to need tons of whistles and bells on my camera. I just need something that's going to give me a quality image. I do agree that all that other stuff is important, too. But I've looked at those cameras and I love them (or rather, I've looked at the D50 and D70 since the D200 isn't out yet). It feels great. It's sturdy and heavy (not too heavy, but it doesn't feel like you're holding a toy either). I've only had limited time to look at the thing, but it's got good featuers as well.
     
  5. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Megapixels don't determine the quality of the image. The size and quality of the sensor, and the quality of glass you put in front of it are the two main factors.

    Megapixels do affect print size yes, but there are so many factors that go into determining what is an acceptable size for a particular photo. The first and foremost is just personal taste. What do you consider, "100% quality"? I have 20x30" prints from a 6.3mp camera that I love.

    Did you use a tripod and/or mirror lock, or shoot handheld? Were you focused dead on? What aperture did you shoot at, and does it fall into the range of the sharpest part of the lens? Were you forced to shoot at a high ISO? All factors in determining how big you'll want to enlarge.

    On top of that, is your post processing routine, and how you get the most from the image you've captured.

    The best thing you can do is buy a camera you can afford, and feels comfortable, and budget enough cash for nice glass. You'll get nice enlargements off of any modern day DSLR. Megapixels are a myth.
     
  6. Wally

    Wally TPF Noob!

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    I couldn't agree more!! I have both a Canon 20D and a Canon 300D, the 300D was around $700 cheaper than the 20D and in everyday use there is no real difference between the two. The 20D has 2 more megapixles but it really does not matter. I have great 20x30 prints that I shot with a 4mp camera.

    If I had to do it all over again, I would have skipped the 20D (which I got first) and just gotten a 300D and spent the extra $700 on better glass.
     
  7. mcoppadge

    mcoppadge TPF Noob!

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    Glass being a good lens?
     
  8. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Yes, glass meaning lens.
     
  9. AIRIC

    AIRIC TPF Noob!

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    I have two D-70s and just recently had some 20x30 prints made. They looked great. I think post prcessing has a lot to do with the final image but glass is the most important.

    Eric
     
  10. mcoppadge

    mcoppadge TPF Noob!

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    So I'm getting the idea that a good lens is pretty important.

    AIRIC, you said that you have two D70s. Are there any lenses you would recommend for a D50 or D70?
     
  11. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    Tell us how much you want to spend
    What you want to shoot
    Under what conditions

    I'd recommend the cheap kit lens for starters, so you can experiment and then decide for yourself what you need. You can sell it later if you want and you'd only lose like 10-20 bucks which is nothing.
     
  12. snownow

    snownow TPF Noob!

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    Agreed, then i would also reccomend getting a nice small lens. I went for big lenses first 300mm and larger, and now feel that it was a mistake. I friend just sold me a fast 50mm, and 28mm lens (fast being large Aperture). Both of these you can get used for around $100 on ebay, if you want to try one out. I use them all the time now, for varied light and conditions.

    Its seems in the price your looking for the d70 and the 300d would be great cameras, just depending on what side of the fence you want to sit (nikon or cannon)

    I agree with matt 200%, it really does depend on sensor quality and size. My boss has a high end "ol.... never mind on the brand" and i think my d70 and my coworkers 300d take much better quality photos. All because of the quality of the sensor.. my 2cents
     

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