Resolution Chart Comparison

Comparison cameras:

  • Canon PowerShot A700 (6MP, 6x zoom)
  • Panasonic DMC-FZ7 (6 MP, 12x zoom)
  • Olympus SP-500UZ (6 MP, 10x zoom)
  • Kodak EasyShare Z650 (6 MP, 10x 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.

Canon PowerShot A700 (1,956 KB; 6 MP) Kodak EasyShare Z650 (921 KB; 6 MP)
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 (2,365 KB; 6 MP) Olympus SP-500UZ (3,305 KB; 6 MP)

Resolution Chart Crops

Canon PowerShot A700 Olympus SP-500UZ
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Kodak Z650
Canon PowerShot A700 Olympus SP-500UZ
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Kodak Z650

Measurable findings

Camera Measurement
Canon PowerShot A700 Horizontal LPH 1400 *1650
Vertical LPH 1450 *1800
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a
Panasonic DMC-FZ7 Horizontal LPH 1400 *1800
Vertical LPH 1500 *1850
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a
Olympus SP-500UZ Horizontal LPH 1250 1500
Vertical LPH 1300 1550
5° Diagonal LPH +1000 n/a
Kodak EasyShare Z650 Horiz LPH 1400 +1700
Vert LPH 1400 +1700
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 it can't quite match 7MP models like the A620, the A700 does an excellent job, with resolution well up near the top of the 6MP pack. They're not the cleanest results, with visible moiré at the highest frequencies, but they are otherwise artefect-free and pretty sharp. Impressive stuff for a budget camera with such a wide zoom range.