Megapixels

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by CMan, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. CMan

    CMan TPF Noob!

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    I was thinking the other day about megapixels; and how they could be analyzed.

    I eventually put together a whole structure in my mind of megapixel=car analogies. See what you think. This is with the amateur in mind, not the professional. Just as race car drivers need special machines, so do pro photographers.

    6 Megapixels=Honda Civic.
    More than enough for your everyday needs. Great to start out with, but you'll end up upgrading even though you probably don't need to.

    8 Megapixels=Toyota Camry
    Good performance; fits your needs in about every way. There is absolutely no reason you should want something better, but you do.

    10 Megapixels=Ford Mustang GT
    It's cool; it's what everybody wants, and when you've got it, everything below it is inferior.

    12 Megapixels=Chevrolet Corvette
    High performance all the way. No average person needs this much power or performance capability, but you're glad that you've got it. Those that don't have it want it.

    16 Megapixels=Lamborghini Gallardo
    It's big, it's impractical for the common person; it attracts attention everywhere you go. You don't need one, but who cares about that?


    Thoughts? Again, I know there are pro's that need 16 MP for large prints, but we're talking the average photographer.
     
  2. Don Simon

    Don Simon TPF Noob!

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    Personally I wouldn't automatically assume more megapixels is better. There are a couple of reasons for this; firstly the larger file sizes mean more storage and more money spent on it. Secondly and more importantly, when the 10mp sensors are still 'APS' size, I'm not convinced they actually provide a better image than 6mp ones. Noise in particular is the major issue for me; most of the 10mp dSLRs I've seen so far seem to produce noisier images at lower ISOs than the 6mp camera I'm currently using.
     
  3. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You left out 39 megapixels - available on medium format camera backs. Ah yes, and then there are large format scanning backs.
     
  4. darich

    darich TPF Noob!

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    I quite like the analogy to cars however not everyone can accurately relate anything to cars if they're not interested in them.

    Personally I've got the Chevrolet Corvette in your analogy but I'd never have a car like that if you paid me.

    Like many things it's all subjective but it's a good idea.

    i have a similar one that i'll start in a new thread to avoid hijacking yours.
    :)
     
  5. CMan

    CMan TPF Noob!

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    Come on! I said the average person. Average people can't afford a $25,000 camera.:mrgreen:

    I personally do not think more megapixels is always better; I really can't even tell the difference between a 6 MP and a 10 MP shot unless I really crop in closely. This just seems to be the attitude that a lot of people have.
     
  6. darich

    darich TPF Noob!

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    I own a Canon 5D and I notice a big difference in large prints from those i used to get from my Canon 20D.
    Whether it's the extra megapixels or full frame sensor that make a larger difference i don't know but i've sold several 30 x 20 inch prints and as far as I'm concerned the extra resolution is worth it.

    For those who don't print larger than around A3 then the extra pixels are probably going to waste.

    Although you said "average person", no average person will buy a camera with 16 or 12mp if there are others with 8mp for several hunded pounds less. Average person can't afford to spend £2000 on a Canon 5D then several more hundred (or thousand) on lenses so you could probably have omitted the 16mp and 12mp from your list.
     
  7. digital flower

    digital flower No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Recently I had a publisher contact me from my website. They wanted to buy 6 pictures and I sent them off 50 thumbs to chose from. They liked them and were ready to buy until they found out the images were from my D70s and were 6 megapixels. They only use 8mp or above, so they cancelled the order. I guess Mps did make a difference in this amateur's life.
     
  8. Jeff Canes

    Jeff Canes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I would think a 6mp raw file would easily upsize to 8mp is PS without any lost of quality
     
  9. darich

    darich TPF Noob!

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    in that case, why make an 8mp camera?

    you may be right up to a certain size, but at a certain point, and that point will be different for different people, the quality will start to drop.
     
  10. digital flower

    digital flower No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    That is probably true but mine were shot in JPEG :( :blushing: I am not crafty enough in PS to make it appear they were shot as 8mp and wouldn't do that without telling anyway (they wanted the 8mp in "native resolution"). Four of the images were for full page slots so maybe they wanted to up them from the 8mp. They were nice about it and invited me to submit a disk when I had 8+mp images.
     
  11. Jeff Canes

    Jeff Canes No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Because an 8mp raw will upsize more that a 6mp
     
  12. Soocom1

    Soocom1 TPF Noob!

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    The thing missing in this conversation is actual capture area. APS sized sensors, regardless of mega pixel count still distorts the image in proportion to its size, and is factually limited to collecting only a finite amount of information because of the sensor size! The smaller the image frame, the more distortion occurs, just to be able to FIT the image onto the sensor in the first place.
    The larger area means more information, and much less distortion. The larger the image area, the less distortion because you are literally getting closer to life sized reproduction. (Read about map projections to understand this.)

    As for any company that goes out and says... we only use 8mp and larger images, thier loss. i have seen images from the original Kodak/Nikon 450 DCS (1.5mp) and they still look great to me. (Yes I understand the enlargement aspect. But still.)
     

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