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Resolution Chart Comparison

Comparison cameras:

  • Fujifilm FinePix S6000fd / S6500fd (6 MP, 10.7x zoom)
  • Sony DSC-H2 (6 MP, 12x zoom)
  • Canon PowerShot S3 IS (6 MP, 12x zoom)
  • Panasonic DMC-FZ7 (6 MP, 12 x zoom)

Shots here are of our standard resolution chart (version one or two). This chart allows us to measure the actual performance of the lens and sensor system. It measures the ability of the camera to resolve lines at gradually higher resolutions and enables us to provide a definitive value for comparison purposes. Values on the chart are 1/100th lines per picture height. So a value of 15 equates to 1500 lines per picture height. (Note that on version two of our chart the vertical resolution 1000 - 2000 lines have been horizontally flipped but are otherwise identical). For each camera the relevant prime lens was used. The chart is shot at a full range of apertures and the sharpest image selected.

Studio light, cameras set to auto, settings all factory default. If possible aperture was selected for optimum sharpness. Exposure compensation +0.7 EV to +1.3 EV.

Fujifilm S6500fd (3,190 KB; 6 MP) Canon S3 IS (2,116 KB; 6 MP)
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 (2,365 KB; 6 MP) Sony DSC-H2 (2,306 KB; 6 MP)

Resolution Chart Crops

Fujifilm FinePIx S6500fd Canon S3 IS
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Sony DSC-H2
Fujifilm FinePix S6500fd Canon S3 IS
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Sony DSC-H2

Measurable findings

Camera Measurement
Absolute
resolution
Extinction
resolution
Fujifilm FinePix S6500fd
(S6000fd)
Horizontal LPH * 1600 * 2050
Vertical LPH * 1550 * 2100
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a
Canon PowerShot S3 IS Horizontal LPH 1400 *1700
Vertical LPH 1450 *1850
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 ‡ n/a
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Horizontal LPH 1400 *1800
Vertical LPH 1500 *1850
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a
Sony DSC-H2 Horizontal LPH * 1450 * 1850
Vertical LPH * 1550 * 1850
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a

* Moiré is visible
+ Chart maximum
Jagged diagonals
LPH Lines per Picture Height (to allow for different aspect ratios the measurement is the same for horizontal and vertical)
5° Diagonal Lines set at 5° diagonal
Absolute res. Point at which all lines of a resolution bar are still visible and defined, beyond this resolution loss of detail occurs (below Nyquist frequency).
Extinction res. Detail beyond camera's definition (becomes aliased)
n/a Not Available (above the capability of the test chart)
n/v Not Visible (not visible on test results)

Although the JPEGs are a bit over-sharpened, and they don't quite match the F30, the S6500fd sets a new standard for resolution in a 6MP 'super zoom' camera, and out-performs cameras with one or even two million more pixels. There's little, if any moiré and only the merest hint of jagginess on 45 degree diagonals, and overall you can't fail to be impressed with a camera that really does squeeze the maximum detail out of 6 million pixels, across the frame.

It's worth noting that the unique design of Fuji's Super CCD sensor seems to lend itself very well to shooting the standard resolution test chart, and SCCD cameras always score highly, but this result is only one test, and one that has only a passing bearing on 'real life' photography. Still, impressive stuff!

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