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Jun 09, 2004, 04:53 AM
Registered User
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How Many Pixels & What Focal Length for AP

2 first time digital camera buyer for AP questions if I may.

1. I can understand about the desirability of being able to crop the image to get rid of unwanted bits but other than this is there much point in having picture pixel counts beyond the screen resolution (1600x1200) of my monitor if I do not intend to print many of my pictures but expect to view them on my monitor? As posted here I normally can't see much difference in resolution between the photos/cameras that are raved about & the rest but I would expect this when they are mainly 640x480. I recognise colour rendition can vary as can quality of lens, sensor etc within an apparantly similar pixel picture.

2. Do I need a zoom facility to get the higher focal lengths. I assume telephoto increases vibration, shake, weight, complexity etc problems but it might still be desirable. Generally are worthwhile AP shots taken wide angle or telephoto?
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Jun 09, 2004, 05:21 AM
Supersonic Engineering
GordonTarling's Avatar
Chris - generally, it's better to have as many pixels as possible or you can afford. Even if you don't want to print the photos for viewing, the extra pixels are always worthwhile if you ever need to crop a photo. Of course, other factors also influence the quality of the final result, like lens quality, sensor quality etc. etc.

In response to your second question, I think you'll find that the majority of AP work is done with the lens at the widest angle setting - makes it much easier to capture that which you set out to capture and the extra pixels that you paid for will enable you to digitally 'zoom' in if necessary.
Jun 09, 2004, 09:10 AM
Registered User
Thread OP
So the recommendation is for the highest number of pixels in a quality basic camera without a zoom but with some form of shutter priority?

What a pity so few quality light digital cameras have fixed focal length lenses & shutter priority.
Jun 09, 2004, 12:15 PM
Ascended Master
Sparky Paul's Avatar
For AP work, zoom is useless, since you can't "see" where the camera really is pointing! A wide field image permits the cropping the zoom would do, if you could aim the camera.
That's why the more pixels the better, even if you don't see the benefit on your monitor.
And for zoom, optical is the only criteria. "Digital" zooms just make the pixels larger, and can be done on the computer.
Lots of pixels, lots of optical zoom, for a walk-about camera.
Lots of pixels, no zoom for AP. And a wide-angle image.
I'm looking to replace my Fuji 2800 walk-about.... 2M, 6x optical.. there's 4M,10x opticals now for decent prices.
The Casio Exilim 3.2M fixed focus does a super job for AP. (except for the odd lens flare in the center of the image.)

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