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8MP cams worth the price?

 
 
joe bloggs
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      06-14-2004
I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.

But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...

Anyone?
 
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Brian C. Baird
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      06-14-2004
In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
joe_bloggs@****Microsoft.com says...
> I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
> megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.
>
> But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
> lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
> and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...
>
> Anyone?


If you're shooting at low ISOs (50 or 100), they'll give you stunning
image quality. They don't do very well in low-light situations for the
reason you mentioned.

If you have to shoot in low-light conditions, consider one of their 4 or
5 MP brethren or better yet, a dSLR like the 300D or D70. The dSLR will
be a step up in terms of quality and features, but not necessarily price
compared to a 8 MP digicam. The added benefit of more lens choices
cinches the deal as far as I'm concerned.
 
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Michael Meissner
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      06-14-2004
Brian C. Baird <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
> joe_bloggs@****Microsoft.com says...
> > I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
> > megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.
> >
> > But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
> > lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
> > and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...
> >
> > Anyone?

>
> If you're shooting at low ISOs (50 or 100), they'll give you stunning
> image quality. They don't do very well in low-light situations for the
> reason you mentioned.
>
> If you have to shoot in low-light conditions, consider one of their 4 or
> 5 MP brethren or better yet, a dSLR like the 300D or D70. The dSLR will
> be a step up in terms of quality and features, but not necessarily price
> compared to a 8 MP digicam. The added benefit of more lens choices
> cinches the deal as far as I'm concerned.


However, note that most consumer priced glass is 1-2 f/stops slower than the
lens in the prosumer cameras (unless you can shoot with the 50mm prime). So
you loose some of the advantages of having a higher ISO speed. If you are
willing to spend the $$$$ to get the nice f/2.8 zooms or f/1.4 primes, then yes
you should be able to get those shots lit only by candle light.....

--
Michael Meissner
email: http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
http://www.the-meissners.org
 
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Jonathan Wilson
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      06-14-2004
On 14 Jun 2004 07:47:12 -0400, Michael Meissner
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>Brian C. Baird <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>
>> In article <(E-Mail Removed) >,
>> joe_bloggs@****Microsoft.com says...
>> > I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
>> > megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.
>> >
>> > But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
>> > lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
>> > and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...
>> >
>> > Anyone?

>>
>> If you're shooting at low ISOs (50 or 100), they'll give you stunning
>> image quality. They don't do very well in low-light situations for the
>> reason you mentioned.
>>
>> If you have to shoot in low-light conditions, consider one of their 4 or
>> 5 MP brethren or better yet, a dSLR like the 300D or D70. The dSLR will
>> be a step up in terms of quality and features, but not necessarily price
>> compared to a 8 MP digicam. The added benefit of more lens choices
>> cinches the deal as far as I'm concerned.

>
>However, note that most consumer priced glass is 1-2 f/stops slower than the
>lens in the prosumer cameras (unless you can shoot with the 50mm prime). So
>you loose some of the advantages of having a higher ISO speed. If you are
>willing to spend the $$$$ to get the nice f/2.8 zooms or f/1.4 primes, then yes
>you should be able to get those shots lit only by candle light.....


A very good point, and also the increased DOF over the range of the
f-stops can be a huge advantage (or serious disadvantage depending)
with the pro-sumer cams. f11-20 needs a suprisingly large amount of
light where as most prosumers dont go below f4-5ish and tend to start
about f1.8-2ish.

If you are used to the larger DOF and fast f-stop moving to a f3.5-4
stop lense with a shallow DOF does take a lot of getting used to...
its a good job that the dSLR's make changing the ISO so much easier
than the prosumers because you'll find yourself pushing the ISO up to
200-400 quite often.


--
Jonathan Wilson.
www.somethingerotic.com
 
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David J Taylor
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      06-14-2004
"joe bloggs" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) om...
> I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
> megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.
>
> But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
> lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
> and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...
>
> Anyone?


Personally, I think that the noise issue is overrated. Some noise (grain)
in an image doesn't bother me at all, but it certainly bothers some
people. You need to make up your own mind based on your taking, printing
and viewing conditions.

I have the Nikon Coolpix 5700 (5MP). I purchased the Minolta A2 (8MP)
thinking it might be better, but on average the quality of the images from
the Minolta was no better than those from the Nikon. I has also hoped
that by purchasing the 2nd generation camera (Minolta had an A1 5MP), that
firmware faults in the earlier camera would have been fixed, but they were
not. I sent the Minolta A2 back.

I would suggest:

- compare the results from 5MP and 8MP under your taking and viewing
conditions to see if the extra MP is worthwhile

- see if the ergonomic improvements in the later cameras (Nikon 8700,
Minolta A2 etc.) justify the extra price of these cameras.

You may find that a discounted 5MP camera does what you want very nicely.

BTW: please change your e-mail address to one without profanities.

Cheers,
David


 
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Alfred Molon
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      06-14-2004
joe bloggs <joe_bloggs@****Microsoft.com> wrote:
>I hear a lot about how this sensor is too small for the number of
>megapixels and therefore too much noise reduction is employed, etc.
>
>But when I see some of the sample pics, mainly from Oly C8080 and to a
>lesser extent the Minolta and the Sony F828, from owners on dpreview
>and me thinks, they look pretty good. To my eyes at least...


Noise isn't that much of an issue, if you take care to always shoot at
the lowest ISO (this is usually possible, even in low light, if the lens
is bright enough). Here however the Nikon 8700 with its F2.8-4.2 lens is
the weakest performer.

All these 8MP 2/3" CCD cameras however are currently limited to card
write speeds of about 1MB/s, which means that they take forever to write
a RAW image to the card. If you only shoot RAW you might not be happy
having to wait 12 seconds before you can take the next shot.
--

Alfred Molon
------------------------------
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Olympus_405080/
Olympus 5050 resource - http://www.molon.de/5050.html
Olympus 5060 resource - http://www.molon.de/5060.html
Olympus 8080 resource - http://www.molon.de/8080.html
 
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Paul Wylie
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      06-14-2004
Alfred Molon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
[...]
> All these 8MP 2/3" CCD cameras however are currently limited to card
> write speeds of about 1MB/s, which means that they take forever to write
> a RAW image to the card. If you only shoot RAW you might not be happy
> having to wait 12 seconds before you can take the next shot.


A valid point. However, as I discovered this week, the Dimage A2 will
allow quickviews of previous shots and even allow new shots to be taken
during writes to the CF card, as long as there's room in the DRAM buffer.
That's a far cry from my Oly C2100UZ, which prohibits further operations
of any kind once the write-to-card process starts.

--Paul
** Note "removemunged" in email address and remove to reply. **
 
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Terry
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      06-14-2004
Paul Wylie wrote:

>Alfred Molon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>[...]
>> All these 8MP 2/3" CCD cameras however are currently limited to card
>> write speeds of about 1MB/s, which means that they take forever to write
>> a RAW image to the card. If you only shoot RAW you might not be happy
>> having to wait 12 seconds before you can take the next shot.

>
>A valid point. However, as I discovered this week, the Dimage A2 will
>allow quickviews of previous shots and even allow new shots to be taken
>during writes to the CF card, as long as there's room in the DRAM buffer.
>That's a far cry from my Oly C2100UZ, which prohibits further operations
>of any kind once the write-to-card process starts.


That's just backwards from my experience. On my C2100, I have no
problems taking another shot while it is writing to the SM card. And
it doesn't have a RAW mode anyway. My A2 also can overlap another shot
with writing to the CF card, but only when in JPG mode. When in RAW,
or RAW+JPG, it prohibits additional shots until the write completes.
For RAW+JPG, that's about 16-18 seconds.

Terry

 
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Paul Wylie
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      06-15-2004
Terry <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> That's just backwards from my experience. On my C2100, I have no
> problems taking another shot while it is writing to the SM card. And
> it doesn't have a RAW mode anyway. My A2 also can overlap another shot
> with writing to the CF card, but only when in JPG mode. When in RAW,
> or RAW+JPG, it prohibits additional shots until the write completes.
> For RAW+JPG, that's about 16-18 seconds.


Yeah, our experiences are 180 degrees apart.

Once my C2100UZ starts writing to the card, *nothing* else happens. I
swear I was taking multiple shots in RAW mode on my A2 just the other day,
even after the camera started writing to the CF card, but I'll have to
double-check that.

I wonder if your C2100UZ has a newer firmware release than mine.

Speaking of firmware, I saw today that KM released a new firmware version
for the A2 on July 10th.

--Paul
** Note "removemunged" in email address and remove to reply. **
 
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David J Taylor
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      06-15-2004

"Alfred Molon" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) ...
[]
> Noise isn't that much of an issue, if you take care to always shoot at
> the lowest ISO (this is usually possible, even in low light, if the lens
> is bright enough). Here however the Nikon 8700 with its F2.8-4.2 lens is
> the weakest performer.

[]
> Alfred Molon


Nikon 8700 - f/2.8 - f/4.2 lens, zoom 35 - 280mm

Minolta A2 - f/2.8 - f/3.5 lens, zoom 28 - 200mm
Sony F828 - f/2.0 - f/2.8 lens, zoom 28 - 200mm
Olympus C-8080 - f/2.4 - f/3.5, zoom 28 - 140mm

So Nikon is not the "weakest performer", it simply offers a different
choice of zoom range (double the telephoto of the Olympus, for example),
and the same light gathering power at the wide end in the same as the
Minolta.

In practice (with the Nikon 5700 rather than the 8700) I have found the
extreme end of the zoom range to be very usable.

Cheers,
David


 
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