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03-27-2016, 12:50 PM   #1
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MP limits?

With the race to see who can produce a 35mm DSLR with the most MP's, do you see any light at the end of the tunnel on this contest?

03-27-2016, 01:09 PM   #2
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I simply do not see it as a tunnel. High ISO performance, colour depth and dynamic range are simultaneously improving, so except for file size there is no downside to the MP race.
03-27-2016, 01:09 PM   #3
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Pixels must have a size that they cannot eventually get smaller.
Then it depends on image sensor.
You can fit more pixels on a 35mm sensor than a APS-C sensor.
03-27-2016, 01:26 PM   #4
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I guess that the current tech can reach up to 325MP on FF, but after that it's the question of sheer data transport and storing of the images made with such a sensor. I guess that even an APS-c of this pixel density (approx. 205 MP) would require a robust technology just to make transport and storage of the files possible.

I reckon that such a sensor would out-resolve most of the currently used lenses.

edit: Actually, it would out-resolve all of the currently used lenses, of any brand.


Last edited by Audi 5 cyl; 03-27-2016 at 01:34 PM.
03-27-2016, 01:36 PM   #5
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For each and every point in time, given the technological capabilities available, there's a set of sweetspots based on individual necessities.

For instance, when larger/faster hard disk drives become cheaper and get adopted by the general public, the sweetspot for basic-level amateurs moves. Of course individual sweetspots move when the user actually makes the purchase that allows him to process all the data that a certain MP count entails, be it HDD, CPU, GPU, software, portable storage and so on.

Fifteen years ago, 16MP files were considered unusable (Nikon D1x was 5.3MP), now it's a low-end spec
03-27-2016, 01:47 PM   #6
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Technology will keep on evolving as it always has. If not in terms of resolution, then in some other breakthrough manner.

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03-27-2016, 04:48 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Technology will keep on evolving as it always has. If not in terms of resolution, then in some other breakthrough manner.

My thoughts are that there will be some major breakthrough that isn't even on the drawing boards yet. Something that does not use pixels per se', but will be something completely "outside the box," so to speak. I have no idea what this new method will consist of because I'm not a techie.... but it seems that there will be no end to the resolution race and at some point, there will be a completely new method of capturing images far removed from the current method.


Exciting times we live in.
03-27-2016, 05:05 PM   #8
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Was film than CCD than CMOS then........

03-27-2016, 05:08 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobmaxja Quote
Was film than CCD than CMOS then........
...magic!
03-27-2016, 06:23 PM   #10
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We will hit the limit when the photosites on the sensor approach the same size of the various component colours that make up visible light.

Last edited by Digitalis; 03-29-2016 at 01:02 AM.
03-27-2016, 06:57 PM   #11
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In the red spectrum, how close are we? Anyone know?
03-27-2016, 10:29 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
In the red spectrum, how close are we? Anyone know?
Example I've given before would translate as 2.65 times the red color wavelength. Pretty impressive in my books.
03-28-2016, 12:54 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Audi 5 cyl Quote
Example I've given before would translate as 2.65 times the red color wavelength. Pretty impressive in my books.

So, let me see if my very non-technical mind has this figured out. According to what I've been able to find out, the wavelength of the color red is somewhere between 622 & 780nm. A mean number would be 701. So, would that be 701 x 2.65 = 1858 MP? And this is on a 35mm-size sensor?


If that is correct, I can't possibly see ANY need for more megapixels than that! Holy cow..... I had no idea there was STILL that much room to expand!


Truly beyond MY imagination!


And to think I thought I had moved into the "big boy's world" when I bought my 16.3 MP K-50! Thanks for the enlightenment.... I think!
03-29-2016, 01:09 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dewman Quote
A mean number would be 701. So, would that be 701 x 2.65 = 1858 MP?
701nm is too close to NIR, my back of the envelope calculation puts red sensitivity spectral range resolution limit closer to 2268Mp. Remember, colour photographs aren't made from monochromatic channels, there is a wide bandpass and an expected degree of cross-talk between them.

But this is largely hypothetical,we will run into more issues such as Raleigh diffraction limits long before we get anywhere near the pixel densities at which spectral response is dictated by pixel pitch. Though as I think about it using photosites themselves to dictate the spectral response would be a novel way of getting rid of the CFA and increasing QE....but a sensor with 0.4Ám pixels will need all the QE it can get.
03-30-2016, 02:14 AM   #15
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Currently DSLRs (K-3) have 3,9 micron pixels. The smallest pixels in the imaging sensor industry is on mobile phone sensors, with down to 1,0 micron pixels. The wavelengths of light are approximately 0,38-0,75 micron. You can consider the wavelengths as physical limits (although they are not hard limits, but a transitional zone with increasing challenges). There is also technological challenges that limits pixel density further. Today the limits for mobile phone imaging sensors is 1 micron and dslrs about 3,9 micron, but this will of course change. I believe mobile phone sensors wont get much denser in the next decade. Maybe only to 0,9 micron. DSLR sensors have more potential for increasing density, possibly to around 3 micron in the next decade (44 Mp APS-C and 100 Mp FF). But this have a huge downside on dynamic range and high ISO performance (physical not technological limitation), witch I think will split the market even more. We have already seen a tendency of high Mp cameras supplemented by high ISO cameras (Nikon D3s vs D3X, D4 vs D810, Canon 1DX vs 5DSR, Sony A7R vs A7S). I think that one (pixel) size doesn’t fit all. I believe we will get a broader range of pixel densities. High Mp cameras sold side by side with high ISO cameras. Expect to choose your favourite, buy one of each kind or a compromise model.

Last edited by Simen1; 03-30-2016 at 02:20 AM.
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