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Old Dec 17, 2012, 2:00 PM   #1
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Default Resolution and photo ratio

Two questions:
1 - Just got a 16 Mp digicam for my son (panny TS20). It has image size options of 3,5,10,14, and 16 megapixels IIRR. Noise is sometimes an issue for this camera at ISO above 400. If I lower the resolution from 16 to 10 will that make any difference in quality of the image? I can't really tell fom my simple home test. Aside from the size of print I can make and the amount of photos that can be stored on the SD card, how does megapixels used affect pic quality?

2 - The camera supports the following image size ratios: 1:1, 3:2, 4:3, and 16:9. Should we stick with the standard 4:3 size. Is there any image quality reasons to use one or the other setting? Obviously it affects prints, but does it make a difference if mostly just viewing in digital form on TVs, computers, etc?

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Old Dec 17, 2012, 2:20 PM   #2
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G'day CD

We see these Qs lots of time :-) [shows you're on the ball]

Q1) By choosing a mpx figure lower than maximum in the main all you are doing is using less than 100% of available pixels. ie- 100% > 80% > 60% > 40% etc etc

Each image gets smaller & uses less SD card space & you get more of them onto a card

Some people allege that if you use less than 100% pixels then the processor can do a better job with noise suppression, but I have not managed this with any of my cameras [neither have I won the lottery]

Q2) the aspect ratio that you choose is totally up to you and also with 99% of us, it depends upon the end result of your photography. for example - my missus has just done an Africa safari and knew that she was going to print an album of mainly 4 x 6" with a few 8 x 12" prints - so she shot the whole safari using 4:3 mode

My next door neighbour looks at everything on his new wide-screen HD TV and so he shoots everything in TV mode

Its 'horses for courses' mate

Hope this is of some help to you > and maybe we'll get to see some of your efforts here too
Regards, Phil
Has Lumix mirrorless & superzoom cameras and loves their amazing capabilities
Spends 8-9 months each year travelling Australia
Recent images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/ozzie_traveller/sets/
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Old Dec 17, 2012, 4:09 PM   #3
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Q1) When you reduce the resolution of the image, noise will be averaged out, but so will detail. And you'll lose a lot more detail than you will noise. There are better ways to deal with noise, and keeping the resolution at its highest setting gives you more to work with in post processing when you have a real problem.

On the other hand, if he's cramped for space, like he's going on a 5 day roadtrip with friends, and wants to store all the photos on a 2GB card, he should probably select a small image size.

Q2) Use whatever aspect ratio gives you the most pixels horizontally and vertically.

On the other hand, if your son will only ever display the image on a widescreen computer monitor or an HDTV, then the 16:9 will work best, but he shouldn't ever rotate the camera.

So, there's no one best answer for everyone all the time. They are settings for you to change as the need arises.
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
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