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Old Dec 2, 2010, 11:50 PM   #10
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1,130

Originally Posted by peterbj7 View Post
Your last two quotes were wrongly attributed to me.....
I'm sorry, copy/paste accident. I will fix.

Originally Posted by peterbj7 View Post
You say "the sensor and lens are already at or near extremely near their physical limits" but don't explain why you believe this to be so.
Well now you are quoting me entirely out of context. I stated that they were at or extremely near their physical limits in terms of remaining pocketable. I believe this to be so because it is so. There are a number of sources on the web that can explain this in better detail than I can here. Here is one that explains it in a fair amount of detail. Here is another, which actually has a small box at the top that explains it in quite simple and concise terms.

Originally Posted by peterbj7 View Post
You also say "In order to improve low light image quality, you need to gather more light" but miss the obvious alternative, which is to increase sensitivity to the same amount of light. The route that all camera manufacturers are in fact following. I don't find your arguments convincing - you may be right in your assumptions, but they seem to be just that - assumptions.
Although I find your tone a bit offensive and don't believe it is my job to educate anyone when they could easily do so themselves, I'll answer in the hopes that it will at least help some people better understand the technical issues at hand here.

First, there is the issue of sensitivity. Sensitivity can't simply be increased without penalty and this is quite evident in all P&S cameras. The size of the sensor can contribute to the amount of noise in the image because the photosites on a small sensor are closer together than those on a larger sensor and thus can interfere with each other. Sure you can increase the sensitivity without increasing the sensor size, but you will increase the noise as well.

Some manufacturers have went the way of pixel binning to deal with this issue but then you end up with a very soft 2.5MP image on a 10MP camera. They haven't actually solved anything; all they did was use a trick that will get you an image that is mainly only suitable for posting on your Facebook page. Others have gone the way of image stacking which does indeed provide much improved results for still image, low light photography - but it also hasn't fixed anything.

I have no doubt that companies will continue to come up with innovative new ways to improve low light pictures but none of these tricks actually solve the problem. I stand by what I said and hopefully you have read and understood the information at the links provided and now understand why I stated what I did.

If you still have your doubts, well that's your business. It certainly doesn't bother me if someone wants to sit around and wait for the impossible to occur. Denial isn't something new. These same kinds of posts were being made on countless photography forums 5 years ago and perhaps some of those people are still waiting for that camera they were convinced would come. Did it come? No, of course not.
Disclaimer: I take photos of life rather than live to take photos and my opinions of cameras are reflected accordingly.
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