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Resolution Chart Comparison

Comparison cameras:

  • Canon PowerShot S70 (7 MP, 3.6x zoom)
  • Fujifilm FinePix F810 (6 MP, 4x zoom)*
  • Sony Cyber-shot DSC-P150 (7 MP, 3x zoom)
  • Canon PowerShot G6 (7 MP, 4x zoom)

*the FinePix F810 has a 6.1 MP effective SuperCCD chip that outputs 12MP images - these measurements were taken in 12MP mode.

Shots here are of the PIMA/ISO 12233 standard resolution test chart (more of which are available in our comparison database). This resolution 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. Thus a value of 15 equates to 1500 lines per picture height.

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.

Canon PowerShot S70 (2,378 KB; 7 MP) Fujifilm FinePix F810 (4,308 KB; 12 MP*)
Canon PowerShot G6 (2,388 KB; 7 MP) Sony DSC-P150 (2,681 KB; 7 MP)

Resolution Chart crops

Canon PowerShot S70 Fuji FinePix F810 (figures are 16 and 18)
Canon PowerShot G6 Sony DSC-P150
Canon PowerShot S70 Fuji FinePix F810
Canon PowerShot G6 Sony DSC-P150

Measurable findings

Camera Measurement
Absolute
resolution
Extinction
resolution
Canon PowerShot S70 Horiz LPH 1550  * 1800 
Vert LPH 1650 +* 1900 
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000  n/a 
Canon PowerShot G6 Horizontal LPH 1600   * 1800
Vertical LPH 1650   +* 1900
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000  n/a 
Fujifilm FinePix F810 Horizontal LPH 1550   + 2000
Vertical LPH 1650   +* 1900
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000  n/a 
Sony DSC-P150 Horizontal LPH 1500 1700
Vertical LPH 1500 1750
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000  n/a 

* Moiré is visible
+ Chart maximum
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)

Perhaps unsurprisingly the S70 outperforms the only other mid-range 7MP compact (the Sony P150), though not by a wide margin. More surprisingly, the S70 manages to resolve as much detail as the G6, and these tests indicate that it's picking up a lot more fine detail than the 5MP PowerShot S60. The S70's files are very clean, with only the slightest Moire visible as the extinction resolution approaches. If you like lots of detail but don't want a big expensive camera, the S70 should be high on your shortlist.

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