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Compared to...

Here we can compare, using results from our review archives, the colour reproduction and resolution of the Sony DSC-F717 to three other five megapixel digital cameras: Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi, Nikon Coolpix 5700 and Olympus E-20.

Colour Chart Comparison

Colour charts are shot in daylight, Auto White Balance, EV compensation +0.3 (all cameras), measured light ~10 EV. This test is also dependent on the accuracy of the camera's auto white balance, the colour charts are shot in daylight but some camera's white balance is better than others. All cameras are given 20 seconds to "settle" before the shot is taken.

Sony DSC-F717 Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi
Nikon Coolpix 5700 Olympus E-20

In the table below we're only measuring colour. The RGB values were measured from a VGA reduced image (to average colours, remove noise and eliminate JPEG artifacts) using the Eyedropper tool in Photoshop with a 5 by 5 Average Sample Size.

Patch

Sony
DSC-F717

Minolta
DiMAGE 7Hi

Nikon
Coolpix 5700

Olympus
E-20

Black 23,22,24 24,25,26 27,28,27 31,29,32
Middle Gray 92,92,94 77,82,82 91,92,92 92,92,96
White 195,193,192 200,202,198 206,206,205 201,203,205
Magenta 180,26,96 177,41,87 210,30,93 184,31,102
Red 170,19,21 173,31,35 191,14,24 182,30,43
Yellow 190,184,45 197,181,50 190,176,37 201,193,55
Green 34,137,76 35,112,65 1,134,72 25,125,76
Cyan 38,160,192 39,142,184 16,158,202 26,137,193
Blue 53,34,106 40,41,85 45,46,98 50,34,103

Comparing the DSC-F717's colours to other cameras here it's clear that Sony has made some considerable changes to the colour balance of the F717 versus the F707. Colours are more accurate and less saturated but still well balanced and strong enough to give good response.

Resolution Comparison

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. So a value of 8 equates to 800 lines per picture height.

Studio light, cameras set to aperture priority, all settings factory default.
Exposure compensation +0.7 EV for all cameras.

Horizontal resolution Vertical resolution 5 degree diagonal res.
Sony DSC-F717
Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi
Nikon Coolpix 5700
Olympus E-20

Measurable findings (three measurements taken for each camera):

Camera Measurement Absolute Res. Extinction Res.
Sony DSC-F717 Horiz LPH 1450  1800 
Vert LPH 1300  1800 
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000 
Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi Horiz LPH * 1300  * 1450 
Vert LPH * 1150  * 1450 
5° Diagonal LPH 900 
Nikon Coolpix 5700 Horiz LPH 1350  * 1500 
Vert LPH * 1200  1500 
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000 
Olympus E-20 Horiz LPH * 1350  * 1650 
Vert LPH * 1300  * 1650 
5° Diagonal LPH + 1000 

* Moiré becomes visible, + Chart maximum

Definition of terms:

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 Resolution Still defined detail (below Nyquist frequency*)
Extinction Resolution Detail beyond camera's definition (becomes a solid gray alias)
n/a Not Available (above the capability of the test chart)
n/v Not Visible (not visible on test results)

* Nyquist frequency defined as the highest spatial frequency where the CCD can still faithfully record
image detail. Beyond the Nyquist frequency aliasing occurs.

Unsurprisingly the DSC-F717 delivers the exact same resolution as its older sibling the DSC-F707. A year on it's still enough to crown the DSC-F717 king of resolution at the five megapixel level.

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