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View Full Version : MegaPixal vs. camera speed


Kitts21
04-23-2011, 02:55 AM
When does the size of the MP really become un-important? If that makes any sence. I usually do not print any thing over your standard 4X6 pic. I might once in a while do a 5X7 for a collage frame, but that is preatty much it. I was wondering how low of a mega pixal I could go and still have a crisp shot. I also would like to have a camera that was quick between shots. Am I correct in assumig that the larger the MP the longer it takes to process the pics in the camera? Resulting in a slower camera speed. I am looking in to getting a new PS to replace our older kodak. The budget has put a cap on the price of $150, but she would like it to be even lower. I know to get truly "quick" shots you need to jump up to a DSLR but that is slightly over budget. I would also like somthing that was half way decent in low light. As my daughter does gymnastics and the awards sometimes are not the best lit areas. Would I be better off trying to find an slightly older PS that might be discounted with a 7-10mp but has more features. Than a new 12-14mp that is in my price range but is slow? Thanks for the help

ukcatfan
04-23-2011, 06:59 AM
When does the size of the MP really become un-important? If that makes any sence. I usually do not print any thing over your standard 4X6 pic. I might once in a while do a 5X7 for a collage frame, but that is preatty much it. I was wondering how low of a mega pixal I could go and still have a crisp shot. I also would like to have a camera that was quick between shots. Am I correct in assumig that the larger the MP the longer it takes to process the pics in the camera? Resulting in a slower camera speed. I am looking in to getting a new PS to replace our older kodak. The budget has put a cap on the price of $150, but she would like it to be even lower. I know to get truly "quick" shots you need to jump up to a DSLR but that is slightly over budget. I would also like somthing that was half way decent in low light. As my daughter does gymnastics and the awards sometimes are not the best lit areas. Would I be better off trying to find an slightly older PS that might be discounted with a 7-10mp but has more features. Than a new 12-14mp that is in my price range but is slow? Thanks for the help

It is not what you want to hear, but the camera you want does not exist. If it did, we would all be using it and not spending thousands on DSLRs and lenses.

You are correct that the megapixels are not important for most people above around 6-7MP. You might not want to go old model though because you often end up getting slower cameras and outdated features even though the older ones are lower MPs. Your best bet is to narrow your list down to a fairly small group and then try to find reviews. I would personally stay away from Kodak as they have notoriously been worse than almost all other brands in tough lighting.

Gianna'sPapa
04-23-2011, 09:36 AM
Disclaimer: I'm not an expert and there are others here who can correct or further explain. The number of pixels usually doesn't have a lot to do with the speed of the camera. Pixels affect the image and more isn't necessarily better. Because of the size of the sensors (P & S's are considerably smaller than full-frame), trying to cram more into a small space (small sensor) doesn't always improve the final image from the camera. This is a very simplistic explanation and there are some very technical folks here who can explain better. Saying that, I wouldn't buy an older model with less pixels thinking it may improve my output. There is more to a final image than I have stated including the person pressing the shutter button.

manning
04-23-2011, 11:22 AM
I still enjoy using my Canon G-1 occasionally

photo_chick
04-23-2011, 12:09 PM
Megapixels have little to do with shutter lag anymore. My old 4mp p&s has horrid shutter lag. My daughters 10mp p&s has no noticeable shutter lag. They also really don't have a whole lot to do with how sharp an image is. I could get sharp images with my 1.3mp p&s as long as I understood the limitations of that resolution. Much of getting a sharp images is knowing how to use the camera.

The only real benefit to going over 6 or so megapixels is to be able to crop in more. You don't need it to make enlargements and you don't need it for clarity.

We talk about sensor size, pixel size and noise, and how more packed into one place is bad. But consider this... the Canon Rebel XT pixel size (I know there's a more technical term here, but we'll use that for now) is the same size as the Canon 5DmkII. But the 5DmkII has, without question, better ISO and noise performance. My point with that... technology is progressing and while more isn't always better, it's not as detrimental as it was.

THe Fuji S2500 can still be had for around $150. It's a slick little point and shoot that performs well in low light for a point and shoot. But it takes some knowledge of how an exposure is made to pull shots in less than ideal lighting out of it and it can't match a DSLR with a good fast prime.

PhillyMc
04-23-2011, 12:57 PM
I would look at the speed of the lense if you are worried about low light. I have an older Kodak that is upwards of 6, so it takes a lot of light to make the pics look good but it does have a really nice zoom on it. In most point and shoot you either get a high number and good zoom or lower number and less zoom. Personally I'd rather get a Nikon d40 or d50 w/ a 1.8 50mm lense and let my feet do the zooming.

Gianna'sPapa
04-23-2011, 01:01 PM
I would look at the speed of the lense if you are worried about low light. I have an older Kodak that is upwards of 6, so it takes a lot of light to make the pics look good but it does have a really nice zoom on it. In most point and shoot you either get a high number and good zoom or lower number and less zoom. Personally I'd rather get a Nikon d40 or d50 w/ a 1.8 50mm lense and let my feet do the zooming.

While I like to feet zoom, at WDW that is not always possible. I would have missed a lot of good shots without my zoom lenses.

seashoreCM
04-23-2011, 07:17 PM
With few exceptions, camera lenses slow down when zoomed. So the low light performance is worsened.

To a limited extent, more megapixels will make up for less usable zoom. You can simply crop the picture after you upload to your computer and still have enough pixels for a decent 5x7 print.

Kitts21
04-24-2011, 09:54 AM
Thanks for all the help, I am looking into a couple diffrent cameras. I am looking between the Panasonic FH27, and the Sony HX5. I really like the Sony's low light preformance. Does anyone have any experience with either of these? Again thanks for the help.

Edit: Also I'm looking at the Panasonic Lumix ZR3.