Question: more pixels at reduced size, is there a difference?

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rhlpetrus
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Re: Question: more pixels at reduced size, is there a difference?
In reply to Luke Kaven, 2 months ago

Luke Kaven wrote:

For any sensor, there are at least three factors that influence the rendering of high frequency (detail in this case) signal components at a given final rendering size.

You give the example of a 16MP final rendering size based on a native 16MP sensor, a 24MP sensor, and a 36MP sensor.

1) Bayer artifacts. The Bayer matrix reduces high frequency response as one approaches the Nyquist limit. Think of this as the slope of a filter function that diminishes in response as one approaches the limit.

2) AA filtering. This is another factor that, where present, reduces the high frequency response of a sensor as it approaches the Nyquist limit.

3) Downsampling. Downsampling is essentially a low-pass filter. And it too has a slope before the cutoff frequency.

The combination of these three things, among others, helps to determine the total MTF as it relates to your question.

In general, one finds that the higher resolution sensors, after downsampling, produce a more gentle roll-off in the high frequencies than the lower resolution sensors as one approaches the limits of the final rendering size. You can see this differential slope even at web sizes in the amount and quality of fine detail retained.

16MP - Noticeably better for hair and skin than 12MP, but with some roughness at the limits.

24MP - Very good fine resolution of hair, skin, and foliage that is retained after downsampling.

36MP - Excellent fine resolution with excellent quality very nearly up to the limits.

Others can elaborate, but this is the basic picture the way I have it.

Thanks, your comments may have solved my doubts about which FF to get, the D810, if no issues come up, is at the top of the pile right now.

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