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Old Jun 20, 2004, 9:15 PM   #1
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I' torn between two cameras Sony F828 or the Lumix FZ10. Which is a better choicefor picture quality at extreme zoom. The FZ10 has 12x reach but only 4 megaP. The F828 has less reach but with it's 8 megaP image, cropping in should yield the same result, no? Has anyone potted the relationship between focal lenght (zoom) and megapixels? There probably isn't a direct relationship, but I'm hoping smarter people than me have looked at this.
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Old Jun 20, 2004, 10:44 PM   #2
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I would go with the FZ10 because of the image stablization. The long zoom will need very steady hands, tripod or image stablization
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Old Jun 20, 2004, 10:53 PM   #3
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Yes, I would echo Gibson's suggestion.

The only downside with the Panasonic is that it does not use compact flash.

Look for Normcar's reports and photos from the fz10 in the Panasonic forum.


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Old Jun 20, 2004, 11:45 PM   #4
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I have asked myself the same thing. I'm pretty sure this is the answer:]


4x pixels correspond to 2x zoom.Think of it this way: To magnifysomething two times you would take aquarter of your original picture (or pixels)and double the height and width. That wouldeffectively reduce your number of pixels to a1/4.


In yourcasea 6x zoom camera would require 16 megaP to equal your 12x zoom with only 4 megaP.This all assume you are using digital zoom or cropping to compensate for lessoptical zoom.


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Old Jun 21, 2004, 12:12 AM   #5
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Its a bit late, so I'm not going to do the math, but the general rule is that longer zoom beats more MP.

The path is actually not that hard to figure out. You have to grow the density of the sensor in two dimentions (X & Y) to gain more resolution. That means the MP growth isn't linear, while the focal length growth is linear. Therefor it is easier to increase zoom than it is to increase MP... the same amount of zoom increase means you need to grow the MP at a faster rate.

But this isn't all there is to using the camera. Having more MP allows for more creative croping of the picture. This should not be ignored. You can make a picture better by croping later easier than you can getting the focal length right on the zoom. If you have to crop a lot, you will not be able to print it very large... but at least you'll have gotten exactly what you want.

But as Gibsonpd3620 points out, there are other reasons to chose a camera than MP or focal length. Image stabilization is just one other factor that should be considered.

Eric
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Old Jun 21, 2004, 12:53 AM   #6
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Quote:
Has anyone potted the relationship between focal lenght (zoom) and megapixels? There probably isn't a direct relationship, but I'm hoping smarter people than me have looked at this.
Sure, it's called "figure of merit". In this case the FZ10 with 4 megapixels and 12x zoom outperforms a crop by the F828 to a considerable degree (I have both these cameras). Here's a link to get a simple formula to test any cameras against others.

Lin

http://www.digicamhistory.com/Figure%20of%20Merit.html
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Old Jun 21, 2004, 7:13 AM   #7
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It's a good question and Pkarlsson is right. If you crop an 8Mp picture taken at 200mm and try to get the same result as a picture taken at 400mm, you'll end up with a 2Mp picture.You ger a similar result by using the digital 2X zoom on the 8Mp camera and this will again give you about 2Mp (1600X1200). So the FZ10 will be better.
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Old Jun 21, 2004, 9:39 AM   #8
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One thing to remember is action shots. It is much easier to shoot them with a wider lens and crop later. For a while I was on a kick of shooting birds and bugs in flight. That is very difficult with a long lens...

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Old Jun 21, 2004, 11:11 AM   #9
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Keep in mind that if you crop a 200mm shot (or use 2X digital zoom) to make a 400mm, you still need 1/400 on the shutter speed to get a sharp blowup. The stabilization on the FZ10 lets you use 1/100, so you can shoot in more lighting conditions without a tripod.

Darrell1 wrote:
Quote:
One thing to remember is action shots. It is much easier to shoot them with a wider lens and crop later. For a while I was on a kick of shooting birds and bugs in flight. That is very difficult with a long lens...

Darrell
I can follow a bird at 12X once I find it. A manual zoom ring on the FZ10 would be a big help. What causes me problems is the EVF lag with a bird flying across the camera. People have talked about making a wire finder like the old Graflex cameras had. One day I might try to design one that fits in the flash shoe.
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Old Jun 21, 2004, 8:40 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the great responses. They have pushed me in the direction of the FZ10. Just one more question. To get the same size picture (equal number if pixels) with both cameras, the shot would be taken at different focal lengths. Plus I think we can assume the quality of the "glass" is equal in both lenses. Then the question is, is picture quality affcted by where the focal length of the zoom lens is set? In other words do I get a better picture with the zoom at the lower end of it's focal length than the high end? Perhaps there is no rule of thumb here and it depends on each individual lens.

Again thanks for the responses.
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