Sensor Quality vs. Lens Quality and IQ

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
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jmeyersnv
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Sensor Quality vs. Lens Quality and IQ
11 months ago

I understand that there are a number of elements that contribute to a digital camera's image quality, but I believe the two that will have the greatest effect on it are the lens and the sensor.

Earlier today, I played around with the new test scene -- primarily because I recently purchased one of the cameras included with it, the Sony RX100 M2.  I also own a Nikon D7000.  I was surprised by the inferior image quality of the Sony when compared to the other cameras already "referenceable" in this new test scene.  One immediately apparent difference between the others and the Sony RX100 M2 was the size of its sensor, 1", which was much smaller than those of the others even though it also had the most pixels.  Out of curiosity, I calculated the ratio of square millimeter of sensor per million pixels for three cameras: the RX100 M2, the Sony NEX-6 and the Nikon D7000.  Respectively, they are: 5.6; 22.0; and 21.8, which means the size of the RX100 M2 pixels are roughly 1/4th the size of the other two cameras.

The question I have is one of trade-off.  Should pixel size be the first determiner of whether a digital camera takes a good picture, or is it the lens?  How do the two interrelate?

What really motivates this question is my recent purchase of that Sony sub-compact point and shoot.  I love its size and weight, enabling tremendous convenience, and all of its new functions.  But what am I sacrificing in terms of ultimate picture quality under "typical" circumstances?

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J Meyers

 jmeyersnv's gear list:jmeyersnv's gear list
Sony RX100 II Nikon D7000 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR +2 more
Nikon D7000 Sony RX100
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