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Old Feb 18, 2004, 4:26 AM   #1
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Default Whats better? more pixels or big zoom range???

Just curious as to which is better. Friend has 2 megapixel nikon with good size zoom 10x I think. My camera is 4 mp and with the tele converter I get 8 x optical zoom.
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Old Feb 18, 2004, 4:49 AM   #2
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I would take a slightly higher megapixel count and a moderate 3x zoom lens. It's not always about the pixel count or the zoom reach. If a lens offers mega zoom capabilities but isn't very bright and doesn't offer good contrast or color rendition, image quality will suffer. Suffer in the way of soft corners, muddy colors, chromatic aberration, flare, geometric distortions, light fall off (vignetting), etc. And too much megapixelage in a very small area will increase noise, not to mention that a computer that was okay processing 3 megapixel images, will strugle to process 8 megapixel images for example. Just my two cents worth.
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Old Feb 18, 2004, 6:55 AM   #3
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This was the subject of a VERY long thread a while ago.

The question was something like: If technology could deliver many more Mpix on a sensor, with low noise AND decent image stabilisation, where is the trade off reached between conventional lens glass and electronics? If you could start with smaller glass and use digizoom, would you remove many of the geometry distortions inherent in many bigger lenses and adaptors? - that's a big plus for shooting architecture!

I take the point on brightness, but if you consider the hypothetical scenario, could compacts get even smaller using digizoom and no tripod, and still come close to big heavy expensive tele lens performance?

I seem to remember from the posts that the Jury was still out! VOX
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Old Feb 18, 2004, 7:00 AM   #4
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how long ago was that thread and how far back would i have to go to view it?
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Old Feb 18, 2004, 9:17 AM   #5
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All of that is calculable if you have the field of view (FOV) of each lens or its 35mm equiv focal length. X zoom numbers are meaningless: one 7x zoom can top out at 200mm (equiv) while another has 280mm at the long end.

In any case, you could not say that one was "better" than the other without specifying, "better for what?". I want as short a lens as possible, other folks want a lens with the longest reach possible. I want as good a low light performance as possible, other folks want as good a macro as possible.

If by "best" you mean the camera (all else equal between the cameras-not likely) which will produce the largest print, the one with the largest value of the FOV times the square root of the pixel count is "best". It is very likely that other qualities/feature of the camers will outweigh that choice basis.
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