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Old Dec 7, 2002, 6:46 PM   #1
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Default Really confused!

I have a question that no one has been able to answer. . .so far anyway. Do I want to buy a 3.? MP, or a 4.?MP camera (can't afford a 5MP). To do the following.
Take an 8x10 photo of say, a person with a calender on the wall behind him (not an important part of the subject) or maybe, a clock on the wall . . . and at a latter date be able to "zoom" in on the photo (in the file on the computer) and see what time the pic was taken. . .or what date it was when the pic was shot.
With the 2.0MP kodak I use now, pixalates (sp) when I "zoom" in using my existing software. Maybe I'm expecting way too much.

I hope I made myself clear of what I mean.....my wife says no!

thanks in advance..........
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Old Dec 7, 2002, 6:50 PM   #2
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You are wanting to see details in the background which is not the primary focal point. I would vote fro 4mp and not only because it is 4mp. As camera vendors make the steps fro 2 to 3 to 4, etc, there are many other improvements in the camera. I would say 3mp if you interested in real zoom power sucah as the Olympus 730.
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Old Dec 10, 2002, 1:38 AM   #3
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If the ONLY reason you want extreme clarity is to see a clock or calendar in a picture, why not just look at the EXIF data that digital cameras collect for each picture. If I set the camera's internal clock precisely, I can see down to the second when I took any picture.
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Old Dec 10, 2002, 6:22 PM   #4
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Am I correct in thinking that the "zoom in" process you describe is your way of judging the sharpness of a candidate camera's image? (I ask because that's what I do.)
I photograph my house, then zoom in and see how clearly I can read the street number. I photograph my car, then zoom in to see how clearly I can see the logo on the wheel centers.
To excel at this test, all other things being equal, the more pixels the better.
To judge a camera without buying it, go to Steve's review, go to the sample pictures, go to the sample of the red industrial building, and see how clearly you can read the street sign (appears to be the 400-block of Nicholson Street).
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Old Dec 10, 2002, 9:28 PM   #5
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Keep in mind that increasing the pixel count increases the resolution by the square root of the ratio of pixel counts. That means going from 2MP to 4MP will increase resolution by 41.4%. If you compare a picture with your 2MP camera such that a pixel takes up 10 inces/cm of the subject, a 4MP camera's pixel will take up 7.07 inces/cm [1/sqrt(2)] of the same object. Nice to have, but not exactly earth shattering.

So don't get another camera just for the pixel count increase. Look for changes that make an improvment in the way you use the camera, e.g., better high ISO, faster response, wider angle (shorter) lens, ...

With any finite number of pixels, there will always be a magnification factor such that you will see the pixels.
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