does Canon really need more Megapixels - Zeiss Otus on steroids

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joger
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does Canon really need more Megapixels - Zeiss Otus on steroids
11 months ago

Hi guys,

I know this is not gonna be of interest to all of you and I will start with a disclaimer

I've selected by purpose a MF lens - and maybe the best (MF) lens to date from Zeiss - the Otus 55 f/1.4, which is fortunately available for Nikon and Canon mount.

I also know that the measuring, and most of all ranking, from DXOmark is discussed and can be blamed for not exactly documenting the methodology to it's full extent.

However - I find their findings pretty much in line with my own experiences.

At CanonRumors I read the latest claims that Canon is not interested in bringing a high resolution camera in 2014 - well did anyone expect this any more?

But let me elaborate on the findings from DXO - just have a look at the very same lens (two different lenses of the same type - one with Nikon and one with Canon mount to be precise) on different cameras - from left to right 5D II with 21 Mpixels - D600 with 24 Mpixels and D800 with 36 Mpixels

Let's put the DXOMark score aside - since I do not understand what a single number should reflect and let's concentrate for a moment on the perceived megapixels (=P-Mpix)

it is really interesting to see how the very same lens design performs with the identical methodology on different sensors of the same size with different resolution.

If you needed the proof that more is more - here we go

The effect is not linear but it clearly shows that you get a dramatic improvement in sharpness going up from the 5D II to the D800.

Hardware pixel improvement from 5D II to D800 => +71 % pixels

P-Mpix improvement from 5D II to D800 => 61 % pixels

I know - it should be done on the linear resolution but what I try to say is the following:

1.) Not only the resolution goes up but also the dynamic range and ISO performance

2.) We do see an improvement of the system performance with the same lens design - of course this one is rather expensive but it is done lately so we see the very same methodology and not shift in test conditions

3.) There is clearly a NEED for this kind of sensor design and a benefit for the user

4.) Of course handling and personal taste for buttons here or there play an important role (I dislike the D800 layout a lot) but with the given facts it is obvious that there's room for improvement at Canon

So back to the initial question: "does Canon really need more Megapixels"

Well it depends on what you're doing but if you're a slow MF focussing quality oriented shooter and shooting from tripod with MLU and remote release in live view is your style - yes - you're probably gonna see a significant improvement not only in dynamic range but also in enhanced micro contrast and most of all in printable files that will simply look better.

Since I use most of the time shift and tilt lenses and recombine those images to one end result I can clearly telly also at small print sizes (13x18 inches) the difference between a 45 Mpixel file and a 21 Mpixel file.

I just wanted to point that out and make you aware that closing ones eyes does not help. Fortunately the Sony A7R offers an attractive possibility to screw such a sensor on your precious existing Canon lenses.

Please no AF is king discussion - but if you really like to - tell me how you're gonna AF the Otus 55 mm lens

Last remark - There is much more to photography then resolution, dynamic range and technology - fully understood - but let me try to walk you in my shoes - the very same image with different technology photographed will look different - and if you neglect that - why do you use a contemporary camera and not a used 1Ds II or so - right - the AF is better on the later ones

Honestly speaking - I feel a bit left behind the possibilities and I have no reason to doubt the results from DXOmark

just my 2CT

P.S: the 300 f/2.8 L IS USM II (currently best resolving lens on a 5D II) has 21 P-Mpix on the 5D II - imagine how good that lenses would perform on a 36 Mpix sensor?

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 joger's gear list:joger's gear list
Canon EF 135mm f/2.0L USM Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8 Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM +10 more
Canon EOS 5D Canon EOS 5D Mark II Canon EOS-1Ds Nikon D600 Nikon D800 Sony Alpha 7R Zeiss Otus 1.4/55
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