How many MP to make really good A2 prints?

Started Mar 26, 2013 | Questions thread
jbart1
Regular MemberPosts: 181
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Re: How many MP to make really good A2 prints?
In reply to timccr, Mar 26, 2013

From a purely mathematical stance if we assume 300ppi is the minimum for "excellent" quality prints then you will need a 36mp image  7200x5000 (7360x4912 on the D800) to come close to the A2 print size in a 1:1 ratio.  This would mean cropping a bit off either end and having some margin along the top and bottom as the aspect ratios are slightly different.  There is the thought though that the larger a print is the farther away it is meant to be viewed from.  In that school of thought an A2 print at 240ppi or 180ppi may be acceptable depending on the intended viewing distance.  Obviously for gallery shows this does not come into use as much since the viewing distance can be extremely close.  If being used for advertising however the minimum viewing distance may be quite large.

240ppi would be approximately 24mp.

If you talk to printers they may say that using the right up-scaling algorithm you can double the size of the original without introducing noticeable artifacts at close viewing distances.  This would stand to reason that an 18mp original would be sufficient for gallery shows and 6mp for advertising.

Of course this all depends significantly on the subject matter.  A simple composition may upscale significantly larger without degradation than a complex scene.

Clear as mud now ?  yeah me too

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