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Old May 30, 2004, 12:56 AM   #1
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I am a new user I bought the F717 after a lot of research and love it, the ergonomics are great. By the way my girlfriend just got the Fuji S7000 I used it a couple times and I would not trade her if she offeredeven with her througing some cash into the deal, I think the F717 I way better, A personal opion.

My question is, I been expermenting with the zoom and understand the difference between optical and digital. However when I look at 10X zoomed pictures in photoshop, zoom in photoshop I can not detect any signifcant degredation of image quality. If I look at a picture taken at the same location 5X zoom, take into Photoshop and crop to the same as the 10X zoomed image same part of the test subject, in this case some steps on a building under construction. the 5X image looks a lot worse.

What is the effective resulution of a 10X zoomed image with the camera set a max image size and on the fine setting?

How much quality does one loose when using 12X zoom?.

What does Sony mean when they refer to smart zoom?.
any inlightenment would be helpful.

Thanks Willwill
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Old Jun 3, 2004, 3:39 PM   #2
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I can't answer all of your questions but I'll try to explain Sony's view on the zoom.

The F717 has 5x optical and 2x digital, totaling 10x combined zoom. I don't use digital zoom because it is worthless as it degrades the image quality, technically. Smart Zoom is, now don't quote me on this, Sony's response to the problems that users faces when digital zoom degrades the quality. It is supposed to keep or return some of the lost quality and detail to the image sensor. Most casual users, such as the folks who just need a camera for family shots etc. etc., use the digital, just because they necessarily don't care about amount of detail lost from the digital zoom. But users who want the highest quality will refrain from using digital zoom because of its problems in making the quality worse.

I only use digital zoom when I need it. Other than that, I haveit turned off all the time.

Perhaps you could elaborate on your first few questions by posting an example.

Hope I answered your question.
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Old Jun 3, 2004, 11:04 PM   #3
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Regarding the digital zoom, my understanding correspondes with yours regarding degrated quality. This is why when I took several test pictures from the same location, some pics with digital zoom and others using just optical zoom, I was suprised when the digital zoom suffered much less loss in quality then I expected, so Sony smart zoom technoligy to some degree works.

My other question had to do with trying to quantify the degree of quality loss when using the digital zoom, by comparing the image clarity with a none digital zoom image of a lower resolution. My test seemed to indicate that if you need to zoom closer then the 5X optical zoom will let you, when using the Sony F717, it is better to use the digital zoom then go in and do a zoom and crop in a program like PhotoShop. Any help regarding figuring out predictable image quality results when having to resort to using digital zoom would be helpful.


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Old Jun 20, 2004, 12:21 PM   #4
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:homey:Hi Folks

This digital zoom for high end prosumer cameras is just a marketing ploy whatever the manufacturer says. In camcorders it is useful for those very long shots evenn tho the picture is degraded but for a still camera it is a waste.

After you have zoomed 5x optical if you go any further you are cropping the picture in camera and reducing resolution.

The best way is to shoot at maximum picture size (in my case with the Sony F717 that is 2560x1920,) then crop in Photoshop. You can then resize if necessary and you shouldn`t get any problems. I have the new Canon i9950 8 tank A3+ printer and with my 5MP camera I have tested cropped shots which would have approached A2 and the results are superb.
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