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Thread: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

  1. #1

    Default What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    I have just sold my Canon SI IS and am in the process of selling my Ixus V3. Both are 3.2MP cameras and took great pictures. One of the reasons why I sold them was because of the public perception that 3.2MP just does not cut it. Hence, before I go out to get a new camera, I want to establish what exactly is the min resolution that is acceptable to most people. I will most likely get a higher end camera (the 6MP Canon S3 IS perhaps) and a low end camera that at least meets public perception in terms of pixel resolution (the 4MP Canon A430 perhaps).

    I believed and still believe that 3.2MP is more than sufficient for most amateur photographers. My understanding is that the standard for most photo labs is about 300 ppi, and that this is generally regarded as the point of diminishing returns. A 3.2MP camera with 2048 x 1536 pixels will be quite sufficient for a 5R photo of 2100 x 1500 pixels (7" by 5" x 300) and more than sufficient for 4R and below. I believe that a 3.2MP camera can also produce up to A4 size photos of acceptable quality, though if you really want to count pixels, you may need a almost 9MP camera. Is my understanding correct?

    Anyway, this market is largely driven by public perception. So, I just want to find out from you guys what is the minimum resolution that you will look for in a camera. Is it 4 or 5MP or more?

  2. #2
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Personally, I feel that a 4 megapixel camera is more than enuff, even if you wish to blow it to 8R size, it's still ok.

    But if you like to crop shots and do PP, you might wanna get something with more res...
    Michael Lim
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  3. #3

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    For me, 4 to 5mp is sufficient liao..
    Life is like photography, we develop from the negatives.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    depends on how big you want to print. do take note that low res photo cant print big without losing details.

  5. #5

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Quote Originally Posted by tks
    I have just sold my Canon SI IS and am in the process of selling my Ixus V3. Both are 3.2MP cameras and took great pictures. One of the reasons why I sold them was because of the public perception that 3.2MP just does not cut it. Hence, before I go out to get a new camera, I want to establish what exactly is the min resolution that is acceptable to most people. I will most likely get a higher end camera (the 6MP Canon S3 IS perhaps) and a low end camera that at least meets public perception in terms of pixel resolution (the 4MP Canon A430 perhaps).

    I believed and still believe that 3.2MP is more than sufficient for most amateur photographers. My understanding is that the standard for most photo labs is about 300 ppi, and that this is generally regarded as the point of diminishing returns. A 3.2MP camera with 2048 x 1536 pixels will be quite sufficient for a 5R photo of 2100 x 1500 pixels (7" by 5" x 300) and more than sufficient for 4R and below. I believe that a 3.2MP camera can also produce up to A4 size photos of acceptable quality, though if you really want to count pixels, you may need a almost 9MP camera. Is my understanding correct?

    Anyway, this market is largely driven by public perception. So, I just want to find out from you guys what is the minimum resolution that you will look for in a camera. Is it 4 or 5MP or more?
    I am going to be on a roll today, should never allow me to come into the newbies forum.

    Back to the topic. OP, you are allowing other perople's perception to guide your purchase??? That is dumb, dumb and dumb!

    As you yourself had said, the 3.2 MB resolution of your S1 and V3 is sufficient to print 5R effortlessly, my experience is it should hae not problem printing 8R/8RS. The 300dpi is merely a guideline. As long as you don't let the dpi drop too much, I have great result printing at 150dpi for larger prints, up to A2 size. So, how many a2/A3 size print had you printed inthe past year, your entire photographer career? If you print only 4R, 5R and 8R, try to get the S1 and V3 back!
    deadpoet
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  6. #6

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Hi NMSS 2,

    I am aware of the correlation between pixel resolution and print size. What I am trying to do here is to abandon the technicalities but to get a feel of what the common man in the market looks for in a camera. Is it 3, 4, 5 or 6 MP?

    Hi Deatpoet,

    I am indeed allowing other people's peception to guide my purchase. I would not call it dumb. In fact, I think it is a wise decision. That is because I am not buying the cameras for keeps. I am buying it with an eye to resell at a future point in time when I feel the urge to upgrade. And that is where public perception comes it. Who cares if all of us can argue convincingly that a 2MP camera is more than sufficient? Ask anyone in the market, and 9 out of 10 of them will not touch a 2MP camera. Their reasons are not important. I just want to get a camera which I will hopefully have no problems reselling later. Of course, public perception can change. Who knows? Maybe one year later, people will think that a 5MP is the minimum. But at least I can minimise the damage.

  7. #7

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Well, if you need to get the latest and the greatest gadget, you are perhaps doing the right way. But then, one wonders, why do you need to get the latest and the greatest gadget?
    deadpoet
    my portfolio

  8. #8

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    I have been able to get 8R prints form my 3.2mp LC-33 with some PS work As for buying a camera with the hopes it wont devalue much in future, might be a little impossible. P&S camera pirces devalue much faster than DLSR's and no matter what it will always sell at a loss. So the idea is just to buy one that suits your needs for now. The sweet spot for now would be 4-6mp as mentioned earlier. Good balance of price and performance.
    Furry Photos - Photography for the Modern Pet

  9. #9
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    I have to agree with deadpoet here. In fact he beat me to the punch with his statement. So instead, I shall play the devil's advocate.
    Since you are more interested in public perception, then I guess you should get an 8MP camera. That way, if you do sell it next year, that will probably be the lowest pixel camera in the market that's available.
    That said, I still feel that its not wise to be investing in an expensive electronic gadget just so it might have some resale value in the future.
    Its like buying an MPV because it might have a better resale value when you sell it later, never mind that you will be paying extra now or that you will not be using the extra seats any time soon and also that the extra load will be costing you extra fuel charges in the mean time.
    In case my analogy in not immidiately understood, my point is that, like cars, compact cameras are not wise investment choices. So the best choice is to buy something that suits your immidiate needs and perhaps some thing that could see you into the forseeable future.

  10. #10

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Quote Originally Posted by tks

    I believed and still believe that 3.2MP is more than sufficient for most amateur photographers. My understanding is that the standard for most photo labs is about 300 ppi, and that this is generally regarded as the point of diminishing returns. A 3.2MP camera with 2048 x 1536 pixels will be quite sufficient for a 5R photo of 2100 x 1500 pixels (7" by 5" x 300) and more than sufficient for 4R and below. I believe that a 3.2MP camera can also produce up to A4 size photos of acceptable quality, though if you really want to count pixels, you may need a almost 9MP camera. Is my understanding correct?

    Anyway, this market is largely driven by public perception. So, I just want to find out from you guys what is the minimum resolution that you will look for in a camera. Is it 4 or 5MP or more?
    i do feel that a bigger resolution helps a lot in PP for getting the composition u want by cropping and also better for editing small details.

    Unless u always compose ur image well and exactly how u wanted it to be, if not i would feel why not just go for a 6mp camera since most of the new ones are at least that resolution or larger. but if u've budget constraint then that's another issue.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    do aware with 6MP and lousy sensors (small one esp...) there will be lots of noise and with up anyting to 6MP, the noise pixels can be irritating.

    a 35mm camera (film) produce about 22MP~25MP ... so whatever Canon 1D/*D Mark*** Nikon D*X**/D*** also nothing compared.

    BARE MINIMAL is 4MP (or 3.2MP)
    Optimal is about 6~8MP

    if u are shooting with 1D mostly it will likely cropped off to about 8MP or even 6MP left only

  12. #12
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    i'd just buy the Fuji F11 / F30 and forget about the rest of the competition.

    but if i couldnt, i think the canon A75 will still remain my choice for a good featured compact.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    It's hard to say...going based on public perception, the decision will be even harder. The megapixel race is never-ending. In older photography books (and just a few years old), it comments that 2 or 3 MP is enough for a good quality A4 print. Nowadays that argument doesn't seem to hold much water and people feel that you'll need something along the lines of 20 MP to achieve a good result, which is why they still prefer to use film. But I shall not go there.

    Within the next few years, when we're all looking at 15 megapixel consumer cams (and 25 MP high-level SLRs), the public is going to demand something along the lines of 18 MP from you, which is higher than that of even of Canon's highest offering, the 1DsMKII.

    Also, MP are not the thing that makes all the difference. The lens also counts. That's why even the compacts tout having high quality lenses (eg. Carl Zeiss). A good lens will squeeze every bit of resolution out of a sensor without showing its faults. Then comes other things such as dynamic range, the ability to record a wide range of tones, colour depth, noise levels etc.

    If you really want quality, you may need to move away from compact cameras and start looking up the digital SLRs. And even amongst these, you will be lost because there's great variances in quality. The Sigma SD10 for example, is a rarely seen, 3MP DSLR, but quite a few people will promise you that it'll blow away any other 3MP image and perhaps even better or equal a 6MP image from a competitor's DSLR. In between 6MP and 8MP, people will say that there's hardly any difference at all when printed out. So what then? Should we splurge for a (current) top of the range 10+ MP camera in order to squeeze out the difference?

    There is a limit to the perception of the human eye, and the quality to which our consumer printers can print. Hence, there are plenty of limitations along the way that can make an image from a very expensive camera look like it came from a much cheaper, lower MP model. My Mum for example, can't tell the difference between the degree of detail held in a 100% crop out of an 8 MP DSLR compared to a 2 MP P&S that I bought over three years ago. Do be aware that unless you are a working professional and your publishers demand a certain level of quality from you, then it would be easier and more satisfying to get instead, a mid or entry-level DSLR from any of the major manufacturers for now. Read reviews and go through photo tests online to determine if you can tolerate the problems of each camera, the interfaces etc, and get a feel for what you really want to see in YOUR camera.

    Make a decision from there and buy what YOU like.

    Sometimes, very casual friends will lament, "Aww...my camera only 3 MP." All I can say is, "Relax man...it's more than good enough." For their purposes anyway. Buy according to purpose and application, balanced with your likings. Do not buy what others tell you to buy, or to live up to public expectation. What I feel is that the public expects something from photographers. And that thing is a compelling picture. It means composition, meaning, emotion, ability to elicit thoughts, 'oohs' and 'ahhs'. It's not things like grain structure, degree of grain, noise, colours of the rainbow and such.

    Relax. Buy according to your demands. It will be good enough.

  14. #14

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    hi, what is min resolution to print decent 8R sized pics?

  15. #15

    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    If you consider 200dpi decent then it should be about 1600x2000 (8R is 10x8)
    Furry Photos - Photography for the Modern Pet

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    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    i think now-a-days it is more the size of the lcd that matters more

    who cares how many MP your camera can capture
    look around you, do you see those big big LCD screens everywhere

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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    and if u really want pixels, why not just get the casio 10mp cam?

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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    To me.. 3mp is still enough... cos it can print up to 5R with no loss of details.. 8R still looks fine.

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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    Quote Originally Posted by ortega
    i think now-a-days it is more the size of the lcd that matters more

    who cares how many MP your camera can capture
    look around you, do you see those big big LCD screens everywhere
    , true true... i walk on the streets always see people point their PnS with big 2.5" or 3" screen up high.

    anway back to topic, since you already used to canon and wanted to upgrade. can try replacing S1 with 2hand S2 or a new S3. as for PnS maybe something with IS... Isus 800 IS?

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    Default Re: What is the min pixel resolution should I get?

    my 2mp D1h has been burning fuji supreme super 8R & 10R with no HUMAN-EYE noticeable "loss of details"

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