Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Won't get fooled again!

(File under "Warnings").
I remember my first digital camera. It was a Casio, and it was absolutely awful!
Clearly, it lacked pixels. Yes, pixels. Not MEGApixels. I think it was about .3mp. Something like that. When compared to 35mm film, or to Medium Format film, it was a little lacking!
I later aquired a Fuji 6900 camera, and found it to be quite good really. It was a native 3mp, but would impersonate a bigger camera with interpolation tricks. The lens was ok too....ish.Compared to film it was lacking again. Lacking but damned convenient to use!
Well, as you know, Megapixels rose and rose. Nothing under 10mp was considered remotely serious anymore. In fact, everyone knew that Megapixels equalled quality!
Megapixels = quality ONLY when lens quality and skilled use matches or exceeds them.  All this is irrelevant if the camera moves, or the shots are poorly exposed.More Megapixels mean bigger computers, more hassle, new software. Is it worth it?
Do you print A3 and bigger? Do you view images on a 60 inch screen? Do you cut little sections from an image, (crop), to recompose? If not, I would suggest that 10 megapixels is enough. Check this again in 5 years.... I believe it will still be true.
People have argued with me, that "you cant make good, big prints " with 10mp or less. No???
I work on and off with a big European printing company who work, in turn with some of the worlds biggest names, (think LeviAsdaM&S). Do they make banners only from 50mp, or perhaps hoardings from 100mp? NO. Try running your 10mp through a type C "lightjet" printer. Think Durst, for example. See what happens.
People also seem to be confused about "pro" gear.
Folks say to me, "what is the best professional camera under £1000? There isnt one answer.
 A professional camera is the one that still works when you mistreat it, handles well and is versatile. You can take a saleable shot with a compact camera!
All I'm saying is, dont be fooled. More does not necessarily = better. Expensive does not necessarily = "pro use."