Newbie: Digital Camera Resolution Question

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by bbford, Aug 18, 2005.

  1. bbford

    bbford Guest

    Hello,
    I'm experimenting with different resolutions on my Canon A520 with a 512 mb
    card.
    I took 4 indoor shots at different resolutions, of the same object from the
    same distance and had 4x6 prints made.
    Glancing at the pictures, I cannot tell the difference between 2272x1704 and
    1600x1200 at fine or superfine modes.

    If I look really,really close, I would have to say the 1600x1200 print is
    slightly sharper than the 2272x1704 print.

    I would have expected this to be the other way around.

    I'm guessing that the 2272x1704 shot was altered by the photofinisher to fit
    on the 4x6 print and changed the quality. But the 1600x1200 shot did not
    have to be altered so the quality is better.

    Am I right or wrong?
    bbford, Aug 18, 2005
    #1
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  2. bbford

    Brian Baird Guest

    In article <AoVMe.229540$on1.198120@clgrps13>, says...
    >
    > If I look really,really close, I would have to say the 1600x1200 print is
    > slightly sharper than the 2272x1704 print.
    >
    > I would have expected this to be the other way around.
    >
    > I'm guessing that the 2272x1704 shot was altered by the photofinisher to fit
    > on the 4x6 print and changed the quality. But the 1600x1200 shot did not
    > have to be altered so the quality is better.
    >
    > Am I right or wrong?


    Well, a little bit is going on here that can change the output.

    At 4x6, the 1600x1200 shot will be printing at roughly 266 DPI.

    The 2272x1704 will be at 378 DPI, but most like the native resolution of
    the printer is about 300 so the image will be downsampled to that
    number.

    So the actual resolution difference between the prints wouldn't be great
    enough to cause a big difference in quality.

    But why is the 1600x1200 image sharper? Aha! Here's the kicker:

    All digicams apply a liberal amount of in-camera sharpening. In the
    case of the 1600x1200 shot, this sharpening was applied at the final
    size. The 2272x1704 shot was sharpened an equal amount, but some of the
    detail was lost when the image was resized for printing.

    At 5x7 or 8x10 the higher resolution shot would win. This particular
    case proves that if you're going to be printing 4x6s directly from the
    camera, you don't need the highest resolution setting.
    --
    http://www.pbase.com/bcbaird
    Brian Baird, Aug 18, 2005
    #2
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  3. bbford

    bbford Guest

    Thanks, that explains it.


    > But why is the 1600x1200 image sharper? Aha! Here's the kicker:
    >
    > All digicams apply a liberal amount of in-camera sharpening. In the
    > case of the 1600x1200 shot, this sharpening was applied at the final
    > size. The 2272x1704 shot was sharpened an equal amount, but some of the
    > detail was lost when the image was resized for printing.
    >
    > At 5x7 or 8x10 the higher resolution shot would win. This particular
    > case proves that if you're going to be printing 4x6s directly from the
    > camera, you don't need the highest resolution setting.
    > --
    > http://www.pbase.com/bcbaird
    bbford, Aug 19, 2005
    #3
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