Image Quality vs Sharpness


Feb 24, 2010
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#1
Hi All

I was trying to understand image quality and sharpness and have read many definations, but still don't get it. Any bros and sis enlighten me in simple terms ? Image quality is based on camera processing and sensor, sharpness is based on lens ??? Correct ???

many thanks
 

Kit

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#2
In a nutshell, yes. However, other factors like lighting, local contrast, etc will also affect your perception of image quality and what's sharp and what's not.
 

Dream Merchant

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#3
I guess it depends on who's writing the articles, and the definitions one chooses to go by.

Image Quality can be an umbrella, all-encompassing term used to describe any AND every factor that affects the quality of an image, and that includes 'sharpness', which is only one component of the entire equation.

'Sharpness' itself is often confused with resolution. Similar situation as the above; one is a catagory and the other is a component of that category.

Break it down further, perceived 'sharpness' is a component of several factors and not just resolution alone. In comprehensive tests, you might come across terms like MTF (Modular Transfer Function), LPM or LPI, Spatial Frequency Response and so on.

Get into it only if the physics interests you, or pixel peeping at 1000% is mundane.

http://www.imatest.com/docs/sharpness.html


The simpler way to look at is this:

- perceived sharpness is a combination of (grossly put) what a system (sensor) can resolve or capture, and what a lens can deliver to that sensor in terms of resolution and contrast.

Hope that helps some. ;)
 

ovaltinemilo

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#4
I feel it's IQ can be of perception/scientific results and is proned to a debate. Probably you should ask yourself what are the important traits to you rather than to find one that is universally correct.

desmondsoon said:
Image quality is based on camera processing and sensor, sharpness is based on lens ??? Correct ???
quoting from what TS mentioned, I think image quality can also be affected by lens too. sharpness can also be affected by camera processing and sensor too. Thus, it works both ways.

So, I think it's "more true" that camera processing, sensor and lens all affect image quality.
 

Rashkae

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Nov 28, 2005
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#5
To me, sharpness is just one aspect of image quality. Tonality, white balance, etc, all matter too.
 

night86mare

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#6
Hi All

I was trying to understand image quality and sharpness and have read many definations, but still don't get it. Any bros and sis enlighten me in simple terms ? Image quality is based on camera processing and sensor, sharpness is based on lens ??? Correct ???

many thanks
something like that.
 

Numnumball

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Mar 6, 2009
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#7
Hi All

I was trying to understand image quality and sharpness and have read many definations, but still don't get it. Any bros and sis enlighten me in simple terms ? Image quality is based on camera processing and sensor, sharpness is based on lens ??? Correct ???

many thanks
There's other apsect that need to be taken into consideration as well. IQ/Sharpnesss can be dependent on factors like ur dynanic range, tonal range and constrast etc.. And Sharpness are interrelated (or part of) to IQ as well..U cant get a decent pic quality when ur subjects are not sharp..
 

Feb 24, 2010
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#8
Dear All

Thank you for your replies.

What do you'll reckon ? - If I have 3 k , better to spend more on lens (i.e. - 1K on camera body , 2 K on lens) or spend equally (around 1.5K each) ?

What I am getting at is this : is it better to have a highly regarded camera body or highly regarded lens, to have as a combination in order that I can have excellent IMAGE QUALITY .

Many Many thanks
 

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ovaltinemilo

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Sep 12, 2009
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#9
Dear All

Thank you for your replies.

What do you'll reckon ? - If I have 3 k , better to spend more on lens (i.e. - 1K on camera body , 2 K on lens) or spend equally (around 1.5K each) ?

What I am getting at is this : is it better to have a highly regarded camera body or highly regarded lens, to have as a combination?

Many Many thanks
I support OK body + good lens. Body come and go. Lenses are here to stay.
 

ahbian

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May 23, 2006
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#10
Dear All

Thank you for your replies.

What do you'll reckon ? - If I have 3 k , better to spend more on lens (i.e. - 1K on camera body , 2 K on lens) or spend equally (around 1.5K each) ?

What I am getting at is this : is it better to have a highly regarded camera body or highly regarded lens, to have as a combination?

Many Many thanks
I would spend more on lenses.
 

Octarine

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#11
What I am getting at is this : is it better to have a highly regarded camera body or highly regarded lens, to have as a combination in order that I can have excellent IMAGE QUALITY .
Have a look here and think again about your question: What camera to buy?
Unless people sniff into the exif data it is close to esoteric to guess the camera and lens used for a certain picture. But people without any knowledge of photography can tell you when the picture looks somehow bad :bsmilie: - so how much does the "highly regarded camera" matter? Sure, some people need the red ring or other logos as ego booster, so be it. But if you ask for image quality then the camera doesn't come first.
 

pokiemon

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Mar 5, 2005
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#12
Dear All

Thank you for your replies.

What do you'll reckon ? - If I have 3 k , better to spend more on lens (i.e. - 1K on camera body , 2 K on lens) or spend equally (around 1.5K each) ?

What I am getting at is this : is it better to have a highly regarded camera body or highly regarded lens, to have as a combination in order that I can have excellent IMAGE QUALITY .

Many Many thanks
bro, to get good image quality you have to understand your basics as well and apply it.

if you ask me, i would spend more on lens than on body.
 

johnlim

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Feb 26, 2004
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#13
To me, the 1st thing came to my mind about image quality, is the ISO noise; Choose the lowest ISO whenever possible because a noisy photo ruins everything unless you did it purposely to acheive certain effects.

2nd, sharpness? Any lens is good enough; What is important is learning how to focus properly and setting an appropriate shutter speed so that you don't get a blurred image. MOstly probably you are going to use photoshop to further increase the sharpness of the image anyway, the importance of a "very sharp" lens is not of great concern as in the past when film was being used.;)
 

Rashkae

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Nov 28, 2005
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#14
To me, the 1st thing came to my mind about image quality, is the ISO noise; Choose the lowest ISO whenever possible because a noisy photo ruins everything unless you did it purposely to acheive certain effects.
This seems to be the trend nowadays, all newbies measure stuff by ISO. When in fact, this is the least of their concerns.
 

Octarine

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#15
This seems to be the trend nowadays, all newbies measure stuff by ISO. When in fact, this is the least of their concerns.
Seems it's preached already in school that ISO and other certifications are a must. So they take ISO 9001 in the same way as ISO6400 for camera sensors. Bigger numbers look more promising :bsmilie: On the other hand we see chalets at holiday islands with ISO9001 certificate at the wall next to cashier :lovegrin:
 

Rashkae

Senior Member
Nov 28, 2005
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#16
Seems it's preached already in school that ISO and other certifications are a must. So they take ISO 9001 in the same way as ISO6400 for camera sensors. Bigger numbers look more promising :bsmilie: On the other hand we see chalets at holiday islands with ISO9001 certificate at the wall next to cashier :lovegrin:
Actually ISO 9001 just means that all their documents and inventory are labeled with a proper system. :p
 

Octarine

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#17
Actually ISO 9001 just means that all their documents and inventory are labeled with a proper system. :p
Too bad when the cleaner doesn't know about it when doing his job...
 

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