Compared to...

Studio scene comparison (RAW)

For a (more) level playing field for comparison we also shot our studio scene in RAW mode with each camera and converted it using Adobe Camera RAW (in this case a beta version of ACR 5.7). Because Adobe Camera RAW applies different levels of sharpening to different cameras (this confirmed) we use the following workflow for these conversions:

  • Load RAW file into Adobe Camera RAW (Auto mode disabled)
  • Set Sharpness to 0 (all other settings default)
  • Open file in Photoshop
  • Apply a Unsharp mask: 80%, Radius 1.0, Threshold 0
  • Save as a TIFF (for cropping) and as a JPEG quality 11 for download

This is our standard studio scene comparison shot taken from exactly the same tripod position. Lighting: daylight simulation, >98% CRI. Crops are 100%. Ambient temperature was approximately 22°C (~72°F). Camera settings as per previous pages.

Canon EOS 550D vs. Pentax K-x

Canon EOS 550D
Pentax K-x
2.6 MB JPEG (3872 x 2592)
2.9 MB JPEG (3872 x 2592)

The difference between the raw output of the EOS 550D and the Pentax K-x is pretty much the same as we've seen in the JPEGs. Both cameras are capable of excellent resolution, but the EOS 550D just edges ahead thanks to its greater pixel count. However, the difference is so subtle as to be almost irrelevant to normal photography at print sizes smaller than A3.