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Old May 2, 2004, 11:47 AM   #1
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I have an A70 and want the best quality pics. If I shoot on Large and Fine settings the pics seem fine. If I change to Superfine the files get HUGE and I'm not sure if quality is lost or improves.....I'm a digital dummy and any definitions and explanations I've read just confuse me more.....In laymen's terms can someone explain how I'll get the best and most useful 4x6 shots primarily for photo albums? I don't usually do much more than 4x6 and I upload my photos for processing if that makes a difference. I have a large CF card so I still get a large number of photos in either mode. If I can get the same quality pics in M1 fine for example would I be better off to do that? Thanks in advance!
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Old May 2, 2004, 8:32 PM   #2
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Using "Superfine" gives you the most data, and the best quality. If all you are doing is resizing photos down to an email/screen size or posting them on a web site, you do not need this setting. When making prints however, "superfine" will give you the best quality prints. Monitors are lower resolution than printers, so it doesn't take a huge file size for a pic to look good on a monitor. You onlyneed to worry about taking a photo at the largest size and the best quality setting if prints are going to be involved.


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Old May 3, 2004, 11:24 AM   #3
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There has been some discussion on some Canon boards (dpreview) about compression settings and how much they hurt. I tried to test my S400 between fine and superfine settings for an entire day and I couldn't pick out which was which about 95% of the time- sometimes thinking the fine looked better.

I really put it to the test when I accidentially dumped my spare CF card in a lake right before a 2 week trip to Europe-- with a tight budget and not much time before I left- I shot on fine and filled a 512mb card and a 128mb card both (close to 600 photos compared to about 250 I would have got on superfine) and didn't regret it. My 8x10's don't seem to be affected and the 4ft by 12inch panoramas I have framed are tack sharp. I shoot on superfine when I know it's going to be a short day, but if I'm out for a while - I have no qualms about cutting back on that setting.

There may be some issues that I just haven't hit yet- like in certain case jpeg artifacts getting really bad due to the complexity of the image. I am more concerned with results and usability - the fact I can take one CF card in the camera, one battery in the camera, the camera, the charger, and a spare battery in the charger (which takes up very little room) and shoot for a week without worrying about running out of space is wonderful. The fact I have large framed pictures in my home that people are impressed by is amazing.

Test it yourself and see if you can tell the difference- I used a tripod and an old studio video light and shot some items and then brought a shot at both settings up in photoshop and compared side by side.
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Old Jun 7, 2004, 11:18 AM   #4
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Canons 'Superfine' setting don't show any artifacts at all. I haven'tfound any so far, and I've really tried.

In comparison, the 'Fine' setting does show some artifacts. It's easy to spot if youdisplay two pictures of the same detail on the screen side by side. You'll have to enlarge by 200% or more to se it clearly.

I've got an A80 and have been comparing it to a Sony V1 regarding compression artifacts. The best quality jpg compression on the V1 is 'Fine' and it compares to 'Fine' on the A80, or 4 bpp in the exif. So the 'Superfine' on the Canon is rather unique in that it gives a level of quality that is not possible on comparable cameras. Of course, you can use Tiff files on the V1 but that is extremely slow as well as space consuming.

The 'Superfine' setting gives me a file that is less than a sixth in size compared to an uncompressed file (about 12 meg). Not bad forvirtually lossless compression.

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