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02-17-2016, 02:14 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by rednax Quote
Been trying to find out how the printing is effected by number of megapixels and format. Is it worth it going up to full frame ? The real difference doesn't seem so big when you read about it.
So, what should you look for ?
The "rule of thumb" is at least 100 DPI to get a nice looking print at arm's length or "reasonable" viewing distance. Basically you can take the size of your image & divide the height & width by 100. For instance, my K-50 puts out 4928x3264 pixel jpegs. If I divide 4928 by 100, I get 49.28, which means about 49" maximum on the long end. If I divide 3264 by 100, I get 32.64, which means about 32" max on the short end end. Basically the largest I can print is a 32"x49" picture at 100 DPI. Obviously there is no such size, so the next one down would be a 30"x45" print which would technically give me more than 100 DPI. If I want a "higher quality" print at 300 DPI, I'd be limited to a 10"x16" print at the largest after dividing my image size by 300. Mind you that this is for ISO 100 to about 400 on my K-50. The sizes start getting smaller as the ISO climbs due to noise & loss of detail. However, it all depends on your tolerance for noise & what the noise can look like 'cause sometimes it can be like a very fine grain that reminds you of old film & that can give the photo a charming look. Now this stuff is not set in stone. You can go lower DPI & print larger or print smaller to get more DPI if you want. You give up something for something in the end. As mentioned in this thread, it basically depends on where you plan on showing your print.

I do lots of large prints. I can get a very lovely 30"x45" print out of an ISO 1600 RAW file from my 16MP Pentax K-50. I even got a 24"x36" print from an ISO 6400 RAW file. Looked pretty good to me. Mind you that this is a from a 12bit RAW file. I also love the pleasant grain that the K-50 produces at higher ISO, although ISO 12800 seems to be the cutoff for me.

Full frame sensors produce less noise as the ISO climbs. What I get at ISO 6400 on my K-50 would probably be ISO 25600 or maybe even ISO 51200 on the upcoming K-1. Not to mention that the FF image size is larger, so 40"x60" prints will look pretty darn good. All this comes at a cost, though. Lenses cost more, you need more processing power from your PC, more hard drive space, printing 40"x60" pictures is kind of pricey, & you get to a point where you say, "How much do a really need?" Hmmm.... However, you will get some really good looking smaller prints.

Hahaha! Hope this helps.


Last edited by The Squirrel Mafia; 02-17-2016 at 02:20 PM.
02-17-2016, 02:16 PM - 1 Like   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Zephos Quote
Okay okay okay. Obviously you take this very seriously. Thank you for correcting my blatant and intentional lies about science. If it weren't for good people like you we would all be fooled because as you know, we all believe everything we read on the internet.

All snarkiness aside, I have no ill feelings about your posts and hope you have a good day.
All snarkiness aside, you too, I hope you continue with these thoughts, there's a lot of good "outside the box" stuff here in this train of thought.

---------- Post added 02-17-16 at 04:22 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by The Squirrel Mafia Quote
I do lots of large prints. I can get a very lovely 30"x45" print out of an ISO 1600 RAW file from my 16MP Pentax K-50.
That's the key.... test the limits of what you find acceptable, and in my experience, if you find it acceptable, lot's of other people will too. And for some people, it doesn't matter what you do, it won't be good enough for them.
02-18-2016, 09:03 AM   #18
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If you are selling prints, you may have to please the people who want to inspect every pixel. But around the house, you can borrow tricks from architecture, by limiting where people will see your print and how close they can get to it.
02-18-2016, 09:36 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
If you are selling prints, you may have to please the people who want to inspect every pixel. But around the house, you can borrow tricks from architecture, by limiting where people will see your print and how close they can get to it.
You can try and sell to the pixel peepers, but you don't have to if you don't want to, it's your preference. The people who buy my prints just like a colourful compelling picture.

I'm sure the pixel peepers would say "I'm not paying for something of such low quality," and I'm sure I'd answer, "I don't even want to sell to people like you." Now if I was Gurzky and selling prints of millions of dollars , that's different. And if someone wants to pay me millions of dollars, I'll buy whatever they want. But I don't have to to be successful.

But long story short, people who buy my images buy them because of the images I capture with gear that may not even be as good as what they own, at unique times and places, that I get because I'm there, and they weren't. But I can tell you. most of the people who have bought prints from me, it's almost certain they have higher resolution cameras than I do. But they weren't where I was and don't have what i got.

To me photography is like a treasure hunt. You look for 3D scenes that will transfer well into 2 D images, and when you find one, what type of camera with what type of resolution is a very small part of the big picture. With modern upscaling software, the algorithms can actually make the lower resolution image look better, as long as you match the output resolution to the best print quality of the printer 300 for Canon 360 for HP and Epson.


Last edited by normhead; 02-18-2016 at 10:10 AM.
02-19-2016, 07:19 AM   #20
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Oh my, this is obviously a very engaging subject and makes for an interesting read. I am grateful for that and that so many people on this site are eager to help! The reason I asked ( apart from just in generell being a noob) is that I have gotten the opportunity to make big prints together with the possibility of picking out some camera gear as part of a workdeal. Im now using a k5lls wich I am very pleased with. Even so, given the oppertunity (and offcoarse being a gearfreak), Im considering going up a little bit..Depending on who youre speaking with the advice on this mainly falls into two categories:1. APSC is good for everything, you dont need to change format unless you go up to middleformat and 2. naturally you should get fullformat.....Sometimes you get the impression from the latter category that one will have the same sort of epiphany-like experience that Ive had from some lenses the first time Ive used them. Well, I know that Ill go for another Pentax, have three and bought my first in the middle of eighties, so I have some lenses and I like the style, feeling and functionality very much. The question is K3, K3ll (pixelshifting and GPS with startrecking seems nice) or K1. No rush...
By the way, like this answer the most "To me photography is like a treasure hunt. You look for 3D scenes that will transfer well into 2 D images,..."
Allmost like a little poem, very nice!
02-19-2016, 08:47 AM   #21
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More MP means more information. The question is whether this information can be used by the printer, and whether it will be noticed by the viewers.
You can take 50MP camera and an 8MP and print on a business card. Printers will probably not be capable of putting all of that 50MP onto such a small area anyway, so difference will not be significant.
You can print both of those cameras on billboard by a road. And looking up close, the 50MP one will have more detail, will look nice and crisp. But passing motorists on the highway, from a distance of 50m, will never notice a difference.

So, you have to answer your questions yourself. How big will you print? Can the printer put so many pixels on that paper size? Who is doing the printing (if its just a small supermarket print box, then you can assume they have no idea what they are doing and they will edit, degrade your photos before print)? Will the audience look at it closely enough to notice any more MP? Will they care?

You can do a test. Many large photos you see on billboards, buses, buildings.. are actually really poor quality if you look at them close up. Companies often use free stock photo jpegs and rescale them, so the quality ends up really bad. But nobody notices and nobody cares. But maybe you should care, maybe your clients would care, who knows. Do as you wish. Just read up on DPI and viewing distance (actually, above posts already did a fine job explaining this)

Edit: That said, you should definitely buy the Pentax FF. And also a new computer to handle all that extra data and latest raw software with good colour profiles. Buy a monitor with high quality output, and a calibration tool to calibrate the monitor.

Last edited by Na Horuk; 02-19-2016 at 08:55 AM.
02-19-2016, 05:56 PM   #22
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Good printing on a very professional level. Ive seen a lot of beautiful work from this guy. The limitations are certainly all on my side. If I can make a couple of big prints good enough to hang on my own walls, Ill be very happy with that...my profession is in a totally different field, so are my clients, but it doesnt stop me from craving good stuff and wanting to learn how to use it..( picking up quite a bit from this site ) Not planning on buying the complete schobang haha, my computer will do for I while I think. ( a monitor though hm hm...) Thankyou anyhow !!

By the way, just saw this video with Zack Arias. Funny guy haha. Very entertaining. Seems to know what hes talking about though...Still think Ill go for the K1

http://www.imaging-resource.com/news/2014/07/30/lets-cut-the-crop-zack-arias...s-aps-c-debate

Last edited by rednax; 02-20-2016 at 09:28 AM. Reason: adding
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