Sorry, ANOTHER Megapixel Thread (Printing and Megapixels)

Started Aug 1, 2014 | Discussions thread
Wally626 Senior Member • Posts: 2,312
Re: Sorry, ANOTHER Megapixel Thread (Printing and Megapixels)

JayWhyOkay wrote:

Ed B wrote:

JayWhyOkay wrote:

I'm aware that megapixel counts don't really offer much in terms of digital and screen viewing. Somewhere around the 8MP count is pretty much the ball park at least, or something like that. But that's not really the point of this thread. I'm concerned about the relationship to megapixels and printing.
I've never really gone deep into printing photos, but I heard for small prints that it kind of reflects the digital viewing. However, I wanted to know this: for small prints (maximum size would be something like 4in x 6in), does the same logic apply to small prints? Would there be a good difference between a 12 MP, 16 MP, and 24 MP picture in terms of printing? Or would it just be negligible and be one of those cases where it just increases the resolution? These prints are going to a local scrapbook competition, so quality is a bit more of the concern here (and yes, a good printer would also matter in this case, but don't worry about that).
I want to know what you guys have to say about this. Is 24 megapixels in small prints just unnecessary? Would a higher concentration in pixels actually reduce the print quality? Sorry, but I'm not really the printing guy.

I'm sure there are people who will disagree with me but if you're printing at 4X6 (even 8X10) you won't be able to tell the difference between 12 and 24mp.

I used to shoot weddings/portraits with a 6mp camera (Canon DSLR), print all day long at 8X10 and never had complaints.

Naturally, a good lens is probably more important than megapixel count.

Perfect! This is just what I wanted to hear. So essentially, MP's don't matter when printing small, right? Thanks for the feedback! As you can tell, I really have no experience with photoprinting ._.

You can do a simple calculation to figure out the resolution you need. You need between 100 dots per inch to 400 dots per inch (dpi) for printing. Most normal printers top out around 300 dpi but there are some specialty printers that will use up to 400 dpi. 100 dpi is OK for printing if you are not looking at the image too closely, 200 dpi works well for most prints, 300 dpi for close inspection. So for small prints any camera made today will have plenty of pixels. I would always save images at the cameras native pixel resolution as you never know when you might need a larger print but there is no reason to buy a new 24 or 36 MP camera if all you do is 4 x 6 prints.

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