more pixels are better!

Started Dec 14, 2008 | Discussions thread
bobn2 Forum Pro • Posts: 72,009
Re: more pixels are better!

J1000 wrote:

Maybe it's just me, but I find all that talk of photons to be
obscuring the answer to this question.

To the original poster: The answer to the "are more pixels better"
question is very simple: Look at the photos! It's a completely
subjective decision. As you know, increasing the pixel count requires
various compromises. There's no need to know exactly what they are,
because they manifest themselves visually. If you like the output
then good! If you don't, then bad.

Hardly useful for people looking for generalisations. Generalisations are useful, in that they create a short cut to decision making. However, to be useful they have to be rooted in reality, and the only way to do that is to use science for what it's for, distinguishing the general from the particular, therefore allowing one to deal with classes of things rather than dealing with everything case by case.

Here are the things to look out for:

  • High-resolution files with low-def details (inadequate lens

perhaps, or inadequate processing)

Or camera shake, or poor focus, or...

  • Noise (generally speaking, the higher the megapixel count, the

higher the noise)

See the discussion on the use of science in making valid generalisations. When you don't you end up saying silly things, like a generalisation which suggests that a D3x produces more noise than a digicam.

  • Noise-reduction artifacts (the higher the noise, the more NR needed)

Or other misleading generalisations which suggest you might need NR without even stopping to think about the size of image that you might be trying to produce.

It's not just about losing detail due to noise reduction, it's about
watching new details appear that don't belong in the picture

One of us is getting confused here, and I don't think it's me.

And no, it does not double your dynamic range. Even if you have twice
the pixels, on an individual level they are going to interpret the
range of light the same way. So if one pixel can interpret light on a
1-5 scale, then adding another pixel simply does the same action
twice. The color is no more precise that way either, because it's
representing a different point on the image plane.

Spoken like a man who doesn't understand what's going on. Have a look at Emil's posts above, and instead of complaining about people talking about photons, try to understand it.

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