Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digital Cameras (Point and Shoot) > Sony

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old May 3, 2005, 12:27 PM   #21
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

Well, my eyes aren't good enough to see much difference and/or I need a bigger monitor. ;-)

Also, you're comparing dissimilar models. Two different lens designs, different size sensors, with image processing algorithms that may be different for things like contrast and sharpening algorithms.

A more realistic test would be two models that are virtually identical except for the sensor's native resolution. There are simply too many variables to jump to any conclusions based onthe above examples.

But, I know from seeing tests done with other cameras that what you're seeing tends to hold up (you get more discernable detail shootingwith a higher resolution sensor in a camera's lower resolution mode, compared to shooting in the same resolution mode with a lower resolution sensor - when all other things are roughly equal between cameras).


JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 3, 2005, 1:48 PM   #22
Junior Member
 
HeZe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 25
Default

In the above example, the difference is far more noticeable than in the earlier comparisons I did on the P200. Maybe you do need a sharper monitor...

But yea I agree about the problematics of comparing different models. The reason I did it now however is that one would assume the F717 would hold the edge against all these compacts. The lens is superb on the F717, Zeiss quality and very fast (f2) and when this camera came out couple of years ago, it received great reviews all around. But time has passed I guess, bringing new algorithms and image processors and CCDs.. and now the "once so great" F717 is being rivaled by these small compacts.

HeZe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 3, 2005, 2:05 PM   #23
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 436
Default

As far as I was concerned, pixels really only made a difference when printing. I wanted to get a pixel density of 300/inch. With an 8x10 that meant a file of 2400x3000 pixels which is about 6Mp. Would a 5Mp produce an 8x10? Sure but it would have looser pixel density.

An inkjet printer might be rated at 2400dpi but it uses those dots to construct the pixels of the image. If the pixel density is low, there printer will still print at 2400dpi but the individual blocks of pixels will be larger and be visible in the print.

My dye-sub printer prints at 314dpi and that is around 7Mp so, I got a 7Mp camera. Certainly, I never bother to post a full 7Mp image to a website...they are almost always reduced to a mere 800x600 which is sub-megapixel...does that mean we should all go for 1024x768 cameras (.8Mp) when we are posting to the web? Possibly that is all we need...but if we are going to print....then the more pixels the better.
Meryl Arbing is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 3, 2005, 4:06 PM   #24
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 61
Default

I am suprised at the image difference with the F717!

Now I'm curious, printed on a 8 1/2 x11 Photo Page, is there a noticable difference? Which, to me, is where you really need the 5mp or 7mp. For viewing on-screen 1600x1200 is more than enough. (Which is my desktop resolution)

Pic-It is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 3, 2005, 6:04 PM   #25
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

Pic-It wrote:
Quote:
Now I'm curious, printed on a 8 1/2 x11 Photo Page, is there a noticable difference? Which, to me, is where you really need the 5mp or 7mp. For viewing on-screen 1600x1200 is more than enough. (Which is my desktop resolution)
Keep in mind that you're looking a crops of larger images here.

When printing the full resolution photo at an 8x10" size, these sections would be much smaller on the print, and so it would be much harder to discern detail differences (although things like color and contrast differences would still be obvious).

But, you can process images differently to change those types of things, and what you see from newer cameras often has little to do with the resolution of the sensor.

Ditto for sharpness (which is often an optical illusion due to the way a camera increases contrast at better defined edges in an image via sharpening algorithms).

I'm sure others will differ, but chances are, at typical viewing distances, you're not going to discern much difference in detail betweenimages once you get up to around 3 Megapixels at this print size, if everything else about the cameras involved is equal (lens quality, image processing algorithms, metering accuracy, etc.).

Are you going to look at your 8x10" prints from a foot or two away, or are you going to look at them with a loupe?

There is a lot to what makes a good image. You may have a terrible image from an 8 Megapixel Model, and a great image from a 3 Megapixel Model.

There have been a advancementsover the years(image processingusually has better color interpolation algorithms, sharpening algorithms, etc.).

I've seen users report reprocessing their RAW files from older DSLR models using newer software and being very surprised at how good their older images really were (thanks to better algorithms for processing the data from the sensor now).

The same thing applies to the way newer cameras process data in the camera for creating JPEG images. You've got smarter algorithms now.

So, if you're comparing on older 3 Megapixel Model with a newer 8 Megapixel Model at a given print size, the newer 8 Megapixel Model's images may look better. But that may not have a thing to do with the number of pixels it's capturing.

You need to take metering algorithms, lens quality, image processing algorithms, etc., into consideration. You could buy a no name $99.00 5 Megapixel Camera, and may get far less detail in your images compared to a 2 Megapixel Camera from a major manufacturer due to sensor differences, metering accuracy, color accuracy, lens quality, autofocus accuracy, etc.

It's not just how many megapixels the sensor in the camera has... just like it's not just what kind of film you use in a film camera. Are you using a good lens, is the metering and camera settings right for the scene, are you having it processed at the local drug store, or having done somewhere where they pay more attention to quality.

A camera must also process the data from the CCD to produce the final image. How that data is processed can make a big difference in the end results.

I've gotten perfectly acceptable prints from 2 Megapixel Cameras at an 8x10" print size, with relatives surprised that they were taken with a Digital Camera.

Now, you really don't have any room for cropping, and for some printer types you may want to interpolate the image for best results (which adds pixels based on the values of adjacent pixels to prevent pixelation). But, a lower resolution camera can produce prints that are quite good at this size if images are properly prepared.

3 Megapixels is better. I can see a noticeable increase in quality going from 2 to 3 Megapixels at this print size. But, I can't really discern an increase in quality or detail going from 3 to 5 Megapixels at this print size from prints I've made (and had made). But,I'm not using a loupe to check them either. ;-)

As a general rule, the larger the print the further away you'll be viewing it from, too. IOW, you're not going to view a poster size print from 6 inches away. So, even at larger sizes, the differences are not going to be that apparent, at typical viewing distances, provided the images are properly prepared.

Here is an interesting article you may want to read at Luminous-Landscape. It compares a 3 Megapixel Canon EOS-D30 with Fujifilm Provia 100F Transparency Film.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/re..._vs_film.shtml

Now, they did prepare the images for printing by interpolating them to 240 Pixels per Inch first. But, their conclusion was that the 3 Megapixel Camera Images produced better, sharper images at sizes up to 10 X 13". Of course, this particular camera is a DSLR (with a larger sensor, with larger photosites for each pixel). So, that can make a difference too. But, that's also a test that was done in 2000 (and camera image processing has progressed some since then).

Everyone is going to have an opinon on this one... But, I'd say that a good 3 Megapixel Camera can produce great 8x10's, that you'd be hard pressed to match with 35mm film if using a camera with the same lens quality -- provided you were not shooting a high contrast scene.

That's one area where film still has the advantage (well,negative film anyway). ;-) Dynamic Range (the ability to capture both light and dark areas of a scene). DSLR models are slowing beginningto get there, but the smaller sensors used in consumer models may have a ways to go yet (although I think I am seeing some improvements now). Unfortunately, you don't see this kind of thing measured very often in reviews (how many stops of dynamic range in an image).

I'd look at images from the cameras you're interested in. The hard part is finding images of the same subjects taken in identical conditions. But, you will see some samples of the same subjects in the reviews here.

Then, print them at your desired print sizes and compare the quality from them. Let your own eyes be the judge over how good the images are from cameras you consider.


JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 4, 2005, 11:54 AM   #26
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 61
Default

JimC, very interesting...

Cropping is useful (ESPECIALY if you tried using Picbridge! )

And your right, larger prints are seen from furthur away... I've done graphics design & catalogues for many years and I do tend to look at pictures too closely.

After a while you seem to develop an eye for pixalization, compression artifacts, overeall look...etc, which I notice at a glace, and most people wouldn't be bothered in the least by it. (worked for years putting together & preparing catalogues for print, you develop a sense of how the end product will look like).

Pic-It is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 24, 2005, 2:18 PM   #27
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 39
Default

It's been mentioned before, but the way that Smart Zoom effectively gives you 3.6x opticalzoom when you've selected 5MPis a nice feature on the P200.


buzzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 25, 2005, 4:46 AM   #28
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 20
Default

Aren't the sensors (or whatever one calls it) the same for the W5 and the W7? Hence, I guess that if these two could be put side by side it would be the best to see if any difference does exist.
Paparasee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 25, 2005, 1:58 PM   #29
Member
 
kona001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 84
Default

Yes, you will/should see a small difference since the 7MP sensor will always capture just a little bit more detail of objects in the distance than a 5MP sensor, even if the image processing is identical in the camera. Like others have said, few people would look at a picture with a 10X loupe like you would a diamond. However if you print out a poster size picture, you may only notice a difference if you stand one foot in front of it and had them side by side.
kona001 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 10, 2005, 3:32 AM   #30
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1
Default

JimC wrote:
Quote:
Well, my eyes aren't good enough to see much difference and/or I need a bigger monitor. ;-)

Yes you do need a better monitor! The difference, in clarity, is huge...whatever the reasons for the difference...
Quote:
andrys is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 9:15 AM.