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Old Aug 6, 2005, 9:25 AM   #1
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"8.0 MP sensor for prints up to 30 × 40 in. (75 × 100 cm)"/Kodak???

Can this be done with a sensor much smaller than the "APS" size sensors in most DSLRs? If so, an 8X10 printshouldn't be much different than one from a DSLR.

Damn! I was about to shell out 1200 bucks (US) for a Nikon D50 body and a Nikkor 18-70mm lens! I'm sure that the Nikon is much better than the P880. However, is it twice as much better for the price?The P880 MSRP is $600- 5 cents.

And, the P800 has all those manual options (Focus/zoom. AP, SP,etc.).

I'm an old manual SLR Pentax user for 35+ years with permanent developer stinky hands.

Should I wait until September?






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Old Aug 6, 2005, 10:48 AM   #2
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Astronut wrote:
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"8.0 MP sensor for prints up to 30 × 40 in. (75 × 100 cm)"/Kodak???

I hate it when Kodak does that (mentions print sizes in the marketing hype). IMO, it's very misleading.

Sure, you can print 30 x 40 inch images from this camera.You can also get 30x40 inch images printed from a 25 dollar web cam if it can produce JPEG files. That doesn't mean you'll like the quality.

To put things in perspective, an 8x10" print at 300 pixels per inch would require 7.2 Megapixels of resolution. 8 x 300 = 2400, 10 x 300 = 3000. 3000 x 2400 = 7,200,000

So, you need 7.2 Megapixels of resolution to produce an 8x10 inch printwith 300 pixels per inch of detail.

Let's take that to 30 x 40 inches... 30 x 300 = 9000, 40 x 300 = 12000. 9000 x 12000 = 108,000,000. So, you'd need 108 Megapixels for a 30 x 40 inch print at 300 pixels per inch. No, that's not a mistake or typo. Here is a chart you may find handy:

http://www.cordcamera.com/products/d...ct_ratios.html

But, you can interpolate the image again to increase it's resolution (which does not increase the detail captured, since it's only adding pixels based on the values of adjacent pixels). The quality of the interpolation varies depending on how much you are trying to enlarge it, and what tool you are using.

Keep in mind that each time you double the print size (width and height), you need 4 times the resolution to maintain the same detail in pixels per inch. That's because you have 4 times the area. For example, a 16 x 20 inch print has 4 times the area of an 8 x 10 inchprint.

Now, do you *need* 300 pixels per inch. Nope. With most printers, unless you're looking at a print under a loupe, anything over about 200 pixels per inch is probably wasted. You can see a definite increase in quality from most printers going from 150 pixels per inch to 200 pixels per inch. But, after that, it's hard to distinquish further increases in quality by using higher pixel density.

Of course, viewing distance starts coming into the equation when viewing larger prints. You're not going to view a large poster from 1 foot away. So, less detail is not as obvious, provided appropriate image processing is performed.

But, you want to try to avoid pixelation whenever possible (where you begin to see the individual pixels that makeup your image). The maximum image size from this 8MP Kodak camera is 3264 x 2448. If you tried to print a 30 x 40 inch print from a Kodak P880, you'd only have about 82 pixels per inch of detail (40 inches / 3264 pixels = 81.6 pixels per inch).

So, what many printers do is interplate the image for you.Interpolation adds pixels that were not captured by the camera's sensor, based on the values of adjacent pixels. This helps to prevent pixelation, but will not increase the detail captured.

So, will the 30x40 inch print look OK if you view it from a greater distance? Well, that all depends on the image. Some subject types interpolate better than others, andit depends on how much detail was in the image to begin with representing your subject.

What may appear to be a lot of detail in an image, may not be after enlarging it (since the human eye/brain tends to fill in gaps when it recognizes portions of an image).

Lin Evans has a good explanation of this here:

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=23

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Can this be done with a sensor much smaller than the "APS" size sensors in most DSLRs? If so, an 8X10 printshouldn't be much different than one from a DSLR.
There are a number of pros and cons to non-DSLR versus DSLR models. The ability to shoot at higher ISO speeds with lower noise (similar to film grain) is one advantage of a DSLR model. Because the photosites for each pixel are dramatically larger with a DSLR, they are able to gather more light. As a result, they produce a stronger signal requiring less amplification for equivalent ISO speed sensitivity.

So, when you turn up the ISO speed on a non-DSLR camera, it's like amplifying the signal from a weak radio station. Instead of hiss and static, you get image noise.

Depth of Field control is also a consideration. Because a non-DSLR model uses a much smaller sensor, it's difficult to use a larger aperture to blur backgrounds. This is because the actual focal length of the lens is very short for any given 35mm equivalent focal length, since the image circle needed is much smaller. This can be a good thing if you're shooting landscapes, etc. But, this can be a bad thing for portraits, where you may want your subject to stand out from distracting backgrounds.

There are many other considerations, too. For example, size, weight and cost. You need a much larger lens for the same 35mm equivalent focal length and brightness (maximum available apertures, represented by smaller f/stop numbers) with a DSLR versus a non-DSLR model with a tiny sensor.

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I'm an old manual SLR Pentax user for 35+ years with permanent developer stinky hands.
You may also want to look at the Pentax DSLR models if you have some K mount lenses already.


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Old Aug 6, 2005, 2:59 PM   #3
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Kodak does it and so does Nikon. This is off Nikon USA's site.

"8.0 Effective Megapixels: With its impressive 8 megapixels of clarity, the Coolpix 8800 can capture incredible detail to produce sharp, beautiful prints as large as 20 x 30".

I like the "incredible detail ....sharp, beautiful prints " inclusion to the claim. At least Kodak doesn'tindicate the quality of their enlargments.

"So, you need 7.2 Megapixels of resolution to produce an 8x10 inch printwith 300 pixels per inch of detail". Ok, I must be missing something here. The Nikon 8800 and the Kodak P880 have 8 Megapixels. The Nikon D50 and Pentax istD have 6 Megapixels?Of course , the DSLR pixels arelarger.


Humm? 8800 vers P880? Very interesting.

I understand the ISO and depth of field limitation of these P&S cameras now.

Thanks for the very detailed reply including Lin Evens comments.


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Old Aug 6, 2005, 3:21 PM   #4
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Astronut wrote:
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Kodak does it and so does Nikon. This is off Nikon USA's site.

"8.0 Effective Megapixels: With its impressive 8 megapixels of clarity, the Coolpix 8800 can capture incredible detail to produce sharp, beautiful prints as large as 20 x 30".
:lol: I didn't realize that Nikon was doing this, too. Kodak actually started claiming this about their 4 Megapixel models a while back.

Here is a quote from their marketing material for one of their cameras:

"The CX7430 features a 4-megapixel imager coupled with Kodak's Retinar aspheric all-glass 3X optical zoom lens. The new KODAK Color Science image processing chip, allows the CX7430 to produce vibrant prints up to 20 x 30 inches."

Again, you may get acceptable quality images, and you may not -- depending on the subject type, viewing distance, etc.

Quote:
So, you need 7.2 Megapixels of resolution to produce an 8x10 inch printwith 300 pixels per inch of detail". Ok, I must be missing something here. The Nikon 8800 and the Kodak P880 have 8 Megapixels. The Nikon D50 and Pentax istD have 6 Megapixels?Of course , the DSLR pixels arelarger.
Right, the DSLR models you're mentioning have 6 Megapixels versus 8. But, given noise considerations (which can degrade image quality), I'd consider the DSLR models to have higher quality images in many conditions.

Another consideration is that consumer cameras tend to process the images more than a DSLR would. So, you sometimes get unwanted artifacts in images (sharpening halos around high contrast edges, JPEG compression artifacts, too much contrast resulting in loss of shadow and highlight detail, etc.).

This is because consumer cameras are geared more towards providing images with a lot of "pop" straight from the camera. But, when too much processing is applied, artifacts can stick out like a sore thumb at larger sizes.

Most DSLR models don't process the images as much. As a result, you don't have as many processing artifacts from most. But, they can require more Post Processing (increasing sharpness, saturation, contrast, etc.) to get equivalent "pop". Some of the entry level models tend to process images more (D50, etc.) compared to higher end DSLR models, though. The user does have some control over how much is done "in camera" with most models (settings available to increase or decrease sharpening, contrast, saturation, etc.).

Also, you don't really need 300 pixels per inch for an 8x10" print. I've made many an 8x10" print from 2 Megapixel images (which works out to 150 pixels per inch). However, you can see a noticeable increase in quality going to 200 pixels per inch on most printers.

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Humm? 8800 vers P880? Very interesting.
Well, the 8800 uses a Sony 2/3" CCD. I don't know what sensor the Kodak P880 is using. They could be manufacturing their own for this model (IMO, it's unlikely they are using a Sony sensor like Nikon, Canon, Konica-Minolta use in their 8MP models).

Since I have not seen any images from it in controlled conditions, I'll withhold judgement for now.

I'd make sure to read the review conclusion sections for any camera you consider. That's where you'll see things like viewfinder usability (and many high zoom consumer cameras use Electronic Viewfinders which you may or may not like), startup speed, autofocus speed/reliability, cycle time between photos, etc.

As a general rule (but there are exceptions), the non-DSLR models are much slower than DSLR models in virtually all areas.

I'd also make sure to try out any camera you consider in a store. You want to make sure you're comfortable with it (ergonomics, control layout, viewfinder, etc.).


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Old Aug 6, 2005, 4:11 PM   #5
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I've messed with the Canon 350XT, Nikon D70/D50, and Pentax istDS with various lenses at the local Camera stores. I think the sales people are starting to hide or find something else intense to do when I walk in the door. I don't grab, pay and run. I will probably purchase the D50/18-70mm lens combo or I might wait and check out the KM D5 with in-body image stabilization.

I wasintriguedwith Kodak's claims. Enlargement (2x3ft) of a few choiceprints to frame and hang on the wall over the living room sofa is my present goal. Of course, that would be one print at a time and the closest view point would be about 3 feet.The Wifewon't stand for someone standing on thesofa to check out my work.

Thanks for your educational comments.
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Old Aug 6, 2005, 4:17 PM   #6
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BTW, The Kodak P880 will generate "Raw & Tiff" files for the computer literate to play with in PS.

Thanks
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Old Aug 6, 2005, 4:27 PM   #7
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Astronut wrote:
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BTW, The Kodak P880 will generate "Raw" files for the computer literate to play with in PS.

Thanks
Yes, I noticed that in the specs (raw files). This is a nice change for Kodak. In the past, they've been harshly criticized because of the amount of JPEG Compression being used for their images (with no user control over it). They tend to use a lot more compression compared to other major manufacturers (and JPEG is a lossy file format, where more data is thrown away with more compression).

You get smaller file sizes with more JPEG compression (but you lose quality as a result). So, perhaps Kodak is rethinking it's strategy in order to attract more demanding users. Hopefully, 3rd party manufacturers of raw converters will support their new models (too soon to tell).

But, I don't know how it's write speed will be shooting inraw (and raw files are much larger compared to JPEG). We'll need to wait for reviews to see how it performs.

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Old Aug 6, 2005, 4:49 PM   #8
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I will probably purchase the D50/18-70mm lens combo or I might wait and check out the KM D5 with in-body image stabilization.
You may want to be aware that Nikon is encrypting portions of the metadata in their .nef (raw) files from some newer models (D50, D2x, D2Hs).

As a result if this encryption, some products (like Adobe ACR) can't read the camera's white balance information. Adobe (so far) has decided not to decrypt this information (due to legal concernsover violating the Digital Millenium Copyright Act).

So, some users are not very happy about this (being forced to use Nikon's software to convert the filesto use the White Balance set in the camera). Some other users don't mind (since they are just using Auto WB versus setting it for the lighting, and Adobe has it's own Auto White Balance Algorithms for raw file conversion )

As for the 5D, it is now shipping in Hong Kong. So, I suspect we'll see it showing up soon in other parts of the world, too.

Personally, a KM DSLR is on my "short list" for a new camera (even though I already own some Nikon gear). In fact, I've already started buying some lenses: Minolta 28mm f/2,50mm f/1.7,100mm f/2,135mm f/2.8 and a Tamron SP 20-40mm f/2.7-3.5 (so far). ;-)
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Old Aug 6, 2005, 4:50 PM   #9
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Astronut, JimC is correct in all that he says however one small concession to the digicams, at lowest ISO as you would use in typical daylight outdoor pictures, the better8MP digicam images can be impossible to distinguish from DSLRs of 6 or 8MP. The Nikon 8800 has a good lens and produces great images, it is only when you up the ISO that issues arise (or in low light where large areas are underexposed). The existing Nikon, Canon, K/Minolta and Sony 8MP "prosumer" (hate that word) models all have excellent lenses, but the noisy Sony chip. A DSLR will produce a much better image under anything less than perfect conditiond.

The Kodak is an unknown quantity, I haven't even seen the size of the sensor in print yet. The specs imply that high ISO is only available at rediculously low resolutions (0.8MP I believe for any ISO higher than 200), which means they are dealing with noise through heavy incamera processing (probably some form of averaging pixel values to reduce random noise, thus the low resolution) but this is just a guess on my part. I think this camera is a big step forward for Kodak digicams, but not a serious threat to the DSLR market.

What I like is that we now have a camera which handles like a camera (manual zoom, no extending lens), offers the option of external flash, offers plenty of resolution for large prints (well, 30"X40" may be a slight stretch) and offers some of the features of a DSLR while keeping the atributes of a digicam. I think a DSLR is not a necessity for every photographer and I think cameras like the P880 fill the void for people who wnat something more compact and hassle free than a DSLR, but still want to exercise control over their pictures.

I am not lining up to buy one, but the manual zoom really fixes my pet peeve with larger digicams, why do they need lenses that extend, and why do they need power zoom (probably because of the lenses that extend). I am glad to see that Kodak and Fuji are following the lead of Konica/Minolta and Sony by offering fixed lenses with manual zooms on their top digicam models.

Oops, talk too much, bye.

Ira

Hey JimC... I have an 18-35mm f3.5/4.5 Phoenix, a Minolta 35-70mm f4, a Minolta 50mm f1.7, the 70-210mm f4 Minolta and a cheap 500mm Samyang 500mm mirror lens with t-mount. If I can swing a 5D with the kit lens I can toss the Phoenix and have a really complete kit.

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Old Aug 6, 2005, 5:05 PM   #10
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"We'll need to wait for reviews to see how it performs." Yep, that's a given, which goes back to my original question, "Should I wait until September?"

"Oops, talk too much", nope, the more you folks talk the more I learn.

Thanks

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