6 megapixel Silliness

Introducing . . . Tree

I captured this image of a tree down the block from my home just at sunset. I had a very nice image capture session, keeping the camera on manual and spot metering. I was metering to create contrast in the scene, usually by placing a bright object on Zone 7 with great success. I should be able to post a few more from tonight’s images if the forecast for rain turns out to be correct.Having shot this afternoon with the 10 megapixel Nikon P5000, I found this site to be rather silly. 

Best picture quality with 6 megapixels: The 8 megapixels devices released in 2005 showed extreme picture errors (so-called noise) under low light conditions and colour fringes in high contrast structures became visible. These problems have become even worse in today’s cameras with 10 and 12 megapixels. Manufacturers have attempted to repair these problems with software for noise suppression and picture editing.

To me, this is like saying that ASA 400 color print film provides best picture quality and no other film should be used. It may have been the best compromise at the time for color print film, with decent grain and high dynamic range. With sufficient light or a tripod, slower films, especially high saturation chromes like Velvia, could create images that no ISO 400 film could duplicate.What camera manufacturers are trying to do is to create cameras that degrade more gracefully and be all things to all people.

And diffraction limitation at f/8! Isn’t depth of field on a compact sensor enough at f/8? It’s like f/22 in 35mm film format. I could see slow shutter speeds as the complaint if you need to stop down to decrease light, but you can’t have infinite resolution on a camera through pinhole apertures.

The real problem is that internet testers analyze 100% crops rather than looking at reasonable size prints or on-screen images across light levels- which is what, I think, users really care about.

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