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Old Oct 6, 2005, 2:23 PM   #1
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Would a 4mp digital camera be able to print out nice images at 8x10, 13x19 or will I need a higher pixel camera. Thanks
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Old Oct 6, 2005, 4:10 PM   #2
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It really depends on the subject but generally you want to say above 200ppi for prints. I have a calculator to help you find out the ppi for various print sizes at http://www.mattspinelli.com/ppicalc.html


Supposingthe camera is a 4:3 (1.333) aspect ratio here are theppi for each printsize:


13 x 19 = 121.53

4 x 6 = 384.83
5 x 7 = 329.86
6 x 8 = 288.63
6 x 9 = 256.56
8 x 10 = 216.5
8.5 x 11 = 203.76
8 x 12 = 192.42
10 x 13 = 173.2
10 x 15 = 153.93
11 x 14 = 157.45
12 x 16 = 144.31
16 x 20 = 108.25
16 x 24 = 96.21
18 x 24 = 96.21
20 x 30 = 76.97
24 x 36 = 64.14
30 x 40 = 57.73

8.5x11 looks like the cutoff for most prints. 10x13 probably would be the largest you could print to keep the quality at a good level. IF you are taking a picture of a highely detailed subjet you may need 250+ ppi. 13 x 19 is probably expecting too much. I would suggest at leat 8 megapixels if you want prints that large.


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Old Oct 6, 2005, 4:22 PM   #3
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cuthien wrote:
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Would a 4mp digital camera be able to print out nice images at 8x10, 13x19 or will I need a higher pixel camera. Thanks
It's going to depend on the camera, the quality of the image (not just the number of pixels), the type of subject, the amount of detail/pixels representing your subject in the original image, and the viewing distance.

You can always interpolate an image to higher resolutions (which adds pixels based on adjacent pixels) to help prevent problems with pixelation caused by not enough pixels per inch being sent to the printer. But, this can't add detail that isn't there if your subject doesn't have enough to begin with.

Some subject types interpolate better than others, andviewing distance can also be very important (you won't be viewing a larger print from as close).

Lin Evans has an excellent forum post on this topic here (see the 2:18PM post from October 13th):

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...166037#p166037


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Old Oct 6, 2005, 4:46 PM   #4
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Thankyou nelmrand Jimc. I've learned a lot from you and others at this forum.
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Old Oct 6, 2005, 5:09 PM   #5
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I have printed many an 8x10" image from a 2 Megapixel Camera that look just fine, and some were even cropped a bit first (but you really don't have much room for cropping at this resolution and print size). :-)

But, the images were good quality to begin with, and the subject types (mostly portraits) lent themselves well to prints (since your subject is occupying a large percentange of the frame, with a lot of pixels representing the subject).

The short answer is yes.

You can print 13x19" prints from a 4 Megapixel model, even though you've only got 121 pixels per inch. You can probably print some very nice 13x19" prints from one. You probably won't be looking at a 13x19" print from as close as you do for a smaller print.

But, if the camera is generating a bad image to begin with (sharpening halos, JPEG Compression Artifacts, etc.) and doesn't have enough detail (poor lens quality or other problems), or you have a subject type that needs more detail to look right (see Lin Evans post at the link above), then you may not be pleased with the results, depending on the viewing distance. Image defects tend to stand out more at larger print sizes.

Image quality is always subjective, too.

Check out Mike Chaney's QImage Pro, too.Mike is using some pretty sophisticated techniques to interpolate images, optmizing the interpolation to match a specific printer when you print. See his "quality challenge" menu choice for more information on this part.

BTW,I know someone that had an image that was less than 3 Megapixels printed to 20x30" and was pleased with the results. But, the subject type lent itself to this process better than some others.

The imagedidn't contain much in the way of fine detail to begin with (Sunset behind mountains without a lot of detail like foilage in it). The printer provided the needed "rezzing up"/interpolation, using their own RIP.

Again, interpolation has limitations, as Lin Evans discussed in the post I linked to above.
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Old Oct 7, 2005, 10:58 AM   #6
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Thank you Jimc. I really appreciated you taking the time to educate me. Now you've got me hook on camera/pictures, etc....
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