How many MegaPixels to print 8X10

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by tk, Aug 22, 2004.

  1. tk

    tk Guest

    I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    Many of
    the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    accurate?
     
    tk, Aug 22, 2004
    #1
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  2. In article <DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53>, says...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?


    Yes and no. Typically 200-300 DPI (dots per inch) output will maximize
    the output of most home printers or photo labs. This means, at minimum,
    you'd want an output size of 2000 x 1400 (2.8 megapixels) and better
    yet, 3000 x 2400 (5.4 megapixels). Now, 8 x 10 is a slightly cropped
    output, so for acceptable quality you'd want approximately 3-4
    megapixels. For best quality, 6 megapixels and above.

    More pixels will give you more flexibility in cropping and will be more
    forgiving if your focus isn't spot-on. However, more pixels (in point
    and shoots) typically yields more noise which can limit image quality.
    Therefore, in an inexpensive digital camera I think a good trade off
    between noise and detail is between 4 and 5 megapixels.
    --
    http://www.pbase.com/bcbaird/
     
    Brian C. Baird, Aug 22, 2004
    #2
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  3. "tk" <> writes:

    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the
    > minimum amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8
    > x 10 print. Many of the manufactures literature state that 3.2
    > megapixels is enough. Is this accurate?


    Yes. 2 megapixels really works quite well; better than most consumer
    snapshot film cameras. Until the lighting and sharpness of the photo
    are up to first-class standards, there's not much point in worrying
    about the resolution being above snapshot standards.
    --
    David Dyer-Bennet, <mailto:>, <http://www.dd-b.net/dd-b/>
    RKBA: <http://noguns-nomoney.com/> <http://www.dd-b.net/carry/>
    Pics: <http://dd-b.lighthunters.net/> <http://www.dd-b.net/dd-b/SnapshotAlbum/>
    Dragaera/Steven Brust: <http://dragaera.info/>
     
    David Dyer-Bennet, Aug 22, 2004
    #3
  4. tk

    grenner Guest

    3.2 will work just fine.
    "tk" <> wrote in message
    news:DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the

    minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >
     
    grenner, Aug 22, 2004
    #4
  5. tk

    Ron Hunter Guest

    tk wrote:
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >

    That depends on how you define 'good quality'. There are exceptions,
    but most of the more decerning here recommend having at least 300
    dots/inch in the print. That means you need about 3000 x 2400
    resolution, or about 7 mp for that level of quality. I would say that
    in most cases, fair to good quality 8 x 10 prints would require at least
    4 mp.
     
    Ron Hunter, Aug 22, 2004
    #5
  6. tk

    Jem Raid Guest

    "tk" <> wrote in message
    news:DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the

    minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >

    I suppose it depends on what you are used to, compare a 10 x 8 from 35mm 400
    ASA Kodak Tri-X film and there's not a lot of difference, though the print
    from the film will still be better quality. Same film on 2.1/4 Sq, forget
    it, not even in the same street.

    But, show the average person in the street a 10 x 8 from a 3 to 4 Mp digital
    camera and they will be ecstatic, esp if the subject is something they like.
    Photographers tend to look closely at prints, the average person just looks
    at the picture as a whole. And they are quite right, when looking at a
    painting people stand back, will sometimes go close to get the effect of it
    disintegrating and then reforming as they step away again. More
    photographers should be aware of this, stop looking at the techie info and
    make more pictures, that is what the cameras are for.

    Jem
     
    Jem Raid, Aug 22, 2004
    #6
  7. tk

    Ryadia Guest

    tk wrote:
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >

    The quality of the image is more important than the pixel count. I
    frequently make 8x10s from my daughter's 1.4 Mp. camera using 'QImage'.
    This program interpolates the image to the right size for the printer.
    And don't be fooled by those who say it can't be done.

    Interpolation is widespread, used on almost every image you print
    without your knowledge and does indeed produce very good results. Have a
    look at some of techno aussies stuff here:
    http://www.technoaussie.com/big_prints.htm most of his monster wall art
    size prints are interpolated up from small negatives or digital files.

    Ryadia
     
    Ryadia, Aug 22, 2004
    #7
  8. tk

    Ryadia Guest

    Ron Hunter wrote:

    > tk wrote:
    >
    >> I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the
    >> minimum
    >> amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    >> Many of
    >> the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    >> accurate?
    >>
    >>

    > That depends on how you define 'good quality'. There are exceptions,
    > but most of the more decerning here recommend having at least 300
    > dots/inch in the print. That means you need about 3000 x 2400
    > resolution, or about 7 mp for that level of quality. I would say that
    > in most cases, fair to good quality 8 x 10 prints would require at least
    > 4 mp.


    If what you say is true Ron (and it is not) a Canon 10D with a 6 Mp
    sensor could not produce an 8x10 print. Rubbish! I frequently make A3
    and A2 size prints from my 10D files. The new printer I have, along with
    Photoshop produces prints (so far) 20" x 34" with no evidence of digital
    break up. Http://www.technoaussie.com/ryadia. I expect to make panoramas
    24" x 60" from 2 or 3 images from the 10D next week. Do your sums on the
    size/mega pixel thing for an image that size. Certainly need bundles
    more mega pixie's than the 12 or 18 I'll be using - according to your
    theory!

    Ryadia
     
    Ryadia, Aug 22, 2004
    #8
  9. tk

    Jem Raid Guest

    "Ryadia" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > tk wrote:
    > > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the

    minimum
    > > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > > Many of
    > > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is

    this
    > > accurate?
    > >
    > >

    > The quality of the image is more important than the pixel count. I
    > frequently make 8x10s from my daughter's 1.4 Mp. camera using 'QImage'.
    > This program interpolates the image to the right size for the printer.
    > And don't be fooled by those who say it can't be done.
    >
    > Interpolation is widespread, used on almost every image you print
    > without your knowledge and does indeed produce very good results. Have a
    > look at some of techno aussies stuff here:
    > http://www.technoaussie.com/big_prints.htm most of his monster wall art
    > size prints are interpolated up from small negatives or digital files.
    >
    > Ryadia


    That is very interesting, I downloaded the trial.

    Thanks.

    Jem
     
    Jem Raid, Aug 22, 2004
    #9
  10. tk

    PhAnTOmaS Guest

    It'll be fine with just 1 or 2 mp, but need use a chemical process to reveal



    "tk" <> escribió en el mensaje
    news:DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the

    minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >
     
    PhAnTOmaS, Aug 22, 2004
    #10
  11. tk

    EF in FLA Guest

    Why is that tree branch blocking the lighthouse on that calendar cover shot?
    That pole on the left side should have been cropped out too.

    ef




    > If what you say is true Ron (and it is not) a Canon 10D with a 6 Mp
    > sensor could not produce an 8x10 print. Rubbish! I frequently make A3
    > and A2 size prints from my 10D files. The new printer I have, along with
    > Photoshop produces prints (so far) 20" x 34" with no evidence of digital
    > break up. Http://www.technoaussie.com/ryadia. I expect to make panoramas
    > 24" x 60" from 2 or 3 images from the 10D next week. Do your sums on the
    > size/mega pixel thing for an image that size. Certainly need bundles
    > more mega pixie's than the 12 or 18 I'll be using - according to your
    > theory!
    >
    > Ryadia
    >
     
    EF in FLA, Aug 22, 2004
    #11
  12. tk

    grim Guest

    "Ryadia" <> wrote
    >
    > If what you say is true Ron (and it is not) a Canon 10D with a 6 Mp
    > sensor could not produce an 8x10 print. Rubbish! I frequently make A3
    > and A2 size prints from my 10D files. The new printer I have, along with
    > Photoshop produces prints (so far) 20" x 34" with no evidence of digital
    > break up.


    Then your pictures don't have much detail in them. A 6MP camera making
    20"x34" prints will be using about 83 ppi. At that resolution, an image with
    detail in it (like a landscape) would certainly show blurring. If you hang
    the print on a wall that's a fair distance away from the observer, they
    wouldn't be able to tell. But close up, it would not look very crisp.

    Then again, different people have different standards, so if you're happy
    with it...
     
    grim, Aug 22, 2004
    #12
  13. "tk" <> wrote in message news:<DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53>...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?


    It depends what you are happy with, a 3MP mosiac camera won't be near
    enought to print an 8x10 with 100 ISO 35mm film quality. An
    outstanding 6MP mosiac camera is good for 25-50% of low ISOo 35mm
    film's full color resuloution at 8x10.

    If you get a Foveon Direct Image Sensor (no color interpolation
    required, so 1 pixel = 1 pixel instead of 4 monochrome pixels being
    combined to generate 1 full color pixel) 3MP is the same as a 12MP
    mosiac, so 3MP output is more than enough.
     
    George Preddy, Aug 22, 2004
    #13
  14. Using my Canon A40 Powershot I recorded macro photos of a shell at about
    1.4 megapixels. Putting this file through photoshop and setting the
    resolution at 300 DPI I created several examples that were now 200-300
    megabytes in size and printed out as 24X36 posters. The color,
    resolution and contrast were all manipulated in Photoshop and the
    resulting prints show no sign of pixelation. The input is somewhat
    immaterial if you have the ability to manipulate the output and have
    access to a quality printing service.
    John

    Ryadia wrote:
    > Ron Hunter wrote:
    >
    >> tk wrote:
    >>
    >>> I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the
    >>> minimum
    >>> amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    >>> Many of
    >>> the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is
    >>> this
    >>> accurate?
    >>>
    >>>

    >> That depends on how you define 'good quality'. There are exceptions,
    >> but most of the more decerning here recommend having at least 300
    >> dots/inch in the print. That means you need about 3000 x 2400
    >> resolution, or about 7 mp for that level of quality. I would say that
    >> in most cases, fair to good quality 8 x 10 prints would require at
    >> least 4 mp.

    >
    >
    > If what you say is true Ron (and it is not) a Canon 10D with a 6 Mp
    > sensor could not produce an 8x10 print. Rubbish! I frequently make A3
    > and A2 size prints from my 10D files. The new printer I have, along with
    > Photoshop produces prints (so far) 20" x 34" with no evidence of digital
    > break up. Http://www.technoaussie.com/ryadia. I expect to make panoramas
    > 24" x 60" from 2 or 3 images from the 10D next week. Do your sums on the
    > size/mega pixel thing for an image that size. Certainly need bundles
    > more mega pixie's than the 12 or 18 I'll be using - according to your
    > theory!
    >
    > Ryadia
     
    John Enockson, Aug 22, 2004
    #14
  15. tk

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Jem Raid wrote:
    > "tk" <> wrote in message
    > news:DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53...
    >
    >>I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the

    >
    > minimum
    >
    >>amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    >>Many of
    >>the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    >>accurate?
    >>
    >>

    >
    > I suppose it depends on what you are used to, compare a 10 x 8 from 35mm 400
    > ASA Kodak Tri-X film and there's not a lot of difference, though the print
    > from the film will still be better quality. Same film on 2.1/4 Sq, forget
    > it, not even in the same street.
    >
    > But, show the average person in the street a 10 x 8 from a 3 to 4 Mp digital
    > camera and they will be ecstatic, esp if the subject is something they like.
    > Photographers tend to look closely at prints, the average person just looks
    > at the picture as a whole. And they are quite right, when looking at a
    > painting people stand back, will sometimes go close to get the effect of it
    > disintegrating and then reforming as they step away again. More
    > photographers should be aware of this, stop looking at the techie info and
    > make more pictures, that is what the cameras are for.
    >
    > Jem
    >
    >

    I get close to a painting to see HOW it was done. Getting close to a
    photograph also often reveals HOW it was made, If that is important to
    the viewer. Otherwise, just stand back and enjoy it.
     
    Ron Hunter, Aug 22, 2004
    #15
  16. tk

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Ryadia wrote:

    > Ron Hunter wrote:
    >
    >> tk wrote:
    >>
    >>> I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the
    >>> minimum
    >>> amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    >>> Many of
    >>> the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is
    >>> this
    >>> accurate?
    >>>
    >>>

    >> That depends on how you define 'good quality'. There are exceptions,
    >> but most of the more decerning here recommend having at least 300
    >> dots/inch in the print. That means you need about 3000 x 2400
    >> resolution, or about 7 mp for that level of quality. I would say that
    >> in most cases, fair to good quality 8 x 10 prints would require at
    >> least 4 mp.

    >
    >
    > If what you say is true Ron (and it is not) a Canon 10D with a 6 Mp
    > sensor could not produce an 8x10 print. Rubbish! I frequently make A3
    > and A2 size prints from my 10D files. The new printer I have, along with
    > Photoshop produces prints (so far) 20" x 34" with no evidence of digital
    > break up. Http://www.technoaussie.com/ryadia. I expect to make panoramas
    > 24" x 60" from 2 or 3 images from the 10D next week. Do your sums on the
    > size/mega pixel thing for an image that size. Certainly need bundles
    > more mega pixie's than the 12 or 18 I'll be using - according to your
    > theory!
    >
    > Ryadia


    NOT my theory, just the concensus of the pros in the newsgroup. Most
    people would be happy with 150 ppi and up, but then most people don't
    routinely print 8 x 10 (certainly I don't), and if they do, they view
    them from a few feet away, rather than scrutinizing them with a loupe as
    the pros seem to do. BTW, ANY time you print from the computer, the
    image data is modified by the driver software, and again by the printer
    hardware.
     
    Ron Hunter, Aug 22, 2004
    #16
  17. tk

    bob Guest

    "tk" <> wrote in news:DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53:

    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the
    > minimum amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x
    > 10 print. Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is
    > this accurate?
    >
    >


    In addition to the comments others have made regarding your preferences,
    there are two other things to keep in mind:

    1) Not all megapixels are the same. Some digital cameras make nice clean
    images, but some have bad compression and poor colors. A good quality
    camera with 3.2 Mp will produce results that most people would consider
    "good" or even "great."

    2) Some subject matter can be compellingly reproduced with lower pixel
    counts. If you want to see individual grass blades in a marsh shot you need
    more pixels than if you want soft focus closeups of kids.

    Bob

    --
    Delete the inverse SPAM to reply
     
    bob, Aug 22, 2004
    #17
  18. tk

    Ron G Guest

    Hold the camera steady, make sure your camera has really good optics, be
    sure the focus is good, have some good editing software and you can get
    fine 8x10 prints. Of course, the level of detail and the purpose of the
    photo might require higher res, but by and large the needs of non-pro
    snapshooters and even some of us who want to be a bit more serious can
    live in the 2-4meg range, particularly since many of us only
    occasionally print at that size and tend to stand back a few feet to
    look at them.

    tk wrote:
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.
    > Many of
    > the manufactures literature state that 3.2 megapixels is enough. Is this
    > accurate?
    >
    >
     
    Ron G, Aug 22, 2004
    #18
  19. tk

    grim Guest

    "John Enockson" <> wrote
    > Using my Canon A40 Powershot I recorded macro photos of a shell at about
    > 1.4 megapixels. Putting this file through photoshop and setting the
    > resolution at 300 DPI I created several examples that were now 200-300
    > megabytes in size and printed out as 24X36 posters. The color,
    > resolution and contrast were all manipulated in Photoshop and the
    > resulting prints show no sign of pixelation. The input is somewhat
    > immaterial if you have the ability to manipulate the output and have
    > access to a quality printing service.
    > John


    Yeah okay, sure pal. Your 1.4 MP camera is just as good as a 1000 MP camera.
    I suggest you're better off investing in eye glasses than a quality printer.
     
    grim, Aug 22, 2004
    #19
  20. tk

    germano Guest

    "tk" <> wrote in message news:<DJSVc.33854$Fg5.30664@attbi_s53>...
    > I am looking into buying a digital camera and would like to know the minimum
    > amount of megapixels it would take to print a good quality 8 x 10 print.


    For Photographyc resolution on photographyc paper(without fractal or
    bicubic interpolation):
    6 mpxl for a average/good print
    8 mpxl for excellent print

    Ciao
    Germano
     
    germano, Aug 22, 2004
    #20
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