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View Poll Results: How Many Megapixels Do You Want in a Full-Frame Pentax Camera
12MP - Low-light monster, because I want to take photos of moles on moonless nights 3925.49%
18MP - Middle of the road, because I can never make my mind up 5737.25%
24MP - High resolution monster, because I want to resolve every blade of grass in my photographs 5737.25%
Voters: 153. You may not vote on this poll

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01-21-2010, 01:36 PM   #46
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Leica S2's 37.5MP senor is purchased from Kodak. Should the 37.5MP Kodak sensor not be a possible candidate too if we are not worrying about cost?

Miserere, I appreciate all the information provided from your last post. You certainly had done your research and thought much about it.
But I also recall I read somewhere that in a poll, you could come to different conclusion depending on how you ask the question. For example if the polling question is "Do you want lower tax?". We know what the answers are going to be. If we asked "Do you want lower tax but as a result you get no fire fighting service?", the answers would be different. With the first poll, we might conclude people do not want higher tax. With the other we might conclude people do not necessary mind higher tax. Therefore the question is just as important as the conclusions/answers.


Last edited by ma318; 01-22-2010 at 08:37 AM.
01-21-2010, 04:21 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by ma318 Quote
Leica S2's 37.5MP senor is purchased from Kodak. Should the 37.5MP Kodak sensor not be a possible candidate too if we are not worrying about cost?
This sensor is medium format (digital). If I recall correctly, it's the same size as the sensor in the 645D, 36mmx48mm. Maybe the 645D will be using this Kodak sensor, but it's too big for a FF camera.

QuoteQuote:
But I also recall I read somewhere that in a poll, you could come to different conclusion depending on how you ask the question.
Well yes, that is certainly true, and I will admit that I had ulterior motives for posing the options like I did. They reflect common wisdom, which is not necessarily correct wisdom.

Despite this, it seems clear that people want more pixels, which was a surprise given how often people proclaim the megapixel race should be over. I really thought the reason many were leaving Pentax to buy FF from another brand was because of low-light shooting, but that's clearly not the case, and I'm very confused.

The only advantages FF has over APS-C is better low-light performance and smaller fast wide angle lenses. Period. That's it. So why are people asking for a high-rez FF sensor if they're not interested in improved high ISO IQ? Maybe that's better left for another poll...

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01-21-2010, 04:39 PM   #48
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Miserere, you are right. the 37.5MP is MF so we should not considered it for FF. I think if you add the price to the decision, more people may choose the 12MP option.

There is another thread going on which concludes that when you take the lens into consideration and all else being equal, there is no net ISO advantage to FF. Therefore the main reason one would to go FF or MF is in fact to get more megapixels. So in a way, the polling result may not be that surprising.

In fact, I think that may be one of the reasons Pentax does not officially say they will release a FF DSLR. If we believe the megapixel war is over (meaning up to a certain point more MP does not sell more camera) then why would one need FF unless one needs to blow up the print to a very large size. If you need a very large print, Pentax wants you to buy their coming digital MF.

Now if you say there is no lens wide enough and fast enough for you on aps-c, then you do have a case to go FF. But you may have to buy longer tele on FF. There is no free lunch.

Last edited by ma318; 01-22-2010 at 09:03 AM.
01-21-2010, 04:46 PM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by ma318 Quote
There is another thread going on which concludes that when you take the lens into consideration and all else being equal, there is no ISO advantage to FF.
Huh? Which thread is that? I want to see where the laws of physics are being broken

01-21-2010, 04:50 PM   #50
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Here it is. The reasoning seems to make sense to me. The key is you have to take the lens and DOF into consideration when doing the comparison. You must make the comparison based on photos that show the same image (same DOF, same perspective, same field of view, same exposure).

Let say you took an image on an aps-c camera with a 300mm lens at f5.6. On a FF camera, you will have to use a 450mm lens and use f8 with the same shutter speed and one stop higher in ISO to get an identical image with the same DOF, FOV, and perspective. So on the lens you lost a stop of light and must shoot one stop higher in ISO. The 1 stop ISO sensitivity gained due to larger sensor size for the FF is negated by the fact you will have to shoot 1 stop higher in ISO to get the same photo - so it is a wash. Therefore going from APS-C to FF using the same sensor technology is not going to give you higher net low light sensitivity gain when you also take the lens into consideration.

To look at this differently, yes, on the 12MP FF, the IQ (noise level) from shots taken at ISO 3200 is the same as shots taken with the 12MP APS-C at ISO 1600. So I think it is "better" and I must have one. But I will find that I will have to shoot at ISO 3200 to get the same image (same DOF, FOV, perspective) that was taken at ISO 1600 on the APS-C. So there is no real gain and I am now disappointed and wondering why I did not buy the 24MP FF (also no net ISO gain but you at least get more pixels) one instead or even bought it in the first place. Note that I may be disappointed if I was only looking for better ISO performance. I may not be disappointed if I was looking to get a wider view using my existing wide-angle lens - assuming acceptable lens edge performance.

Note that the above is based on theory which I think is sound. But the manufacturer may have better sensor technology and decides to use it only on the FF first. So in practice, you could indeed get some low light advantages until the manufacturer start using the same technology on the APS-C. Doing valid real world comparison testing is key before buying.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-dslr-discussion/71896-low-noise-be...uals-zero.html

Last edited by ma318; 01-25-2010 at 11:03 AM.
01-21-2010, 05:34 PM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
well said peter

although it would be counter productive to the argument to suggest skills last a lifetime, and longer lenses last for a longer period than the camera body will, because neither of these arguments sells bodies.
Utter nonsense. A sensor with higher pixel density will have the same detail advantage on a 300mm lens and a 500mm lens. If someone does own a 500mm lens, they would need to replace it with an 800mm lens...and so on.

Shooting Wildlife with the D3X

QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
But unless you're shooting in a near vaccum the image will just not look right when cropped heavily. It will look too compressed.
What are you talking about? K20D already crops DA* 300 f/4 image circle.
01-21-2010, 08:35 PM   #52
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Miserere, you say there are three FF sensor manufacturers (Nikon, Kodak, Sony). Who do you think makes Canon's FF sensors?

Also, I have yet to see an example where a similar lower density sensor performs any worse than a downsampled higher density sensor. The higher density sensor will do better at lower ISOs and about the same at higher ISOs. Why would you not want one?
01-21-2010, 08:48 PM   #53
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I voted 18mp because I already have the 12mp D700.
To be honest, I bought the D700 because of the 12 MP sensor. I wanted a low light, high ISO monster and I got it.

01-21-2010, 11:43 PM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
This hints at the other side of this question. Do we who are photographers and not engineers or physicisists, have a clue as to what bringing down the density really does? Assuming larger pixel bins meant more sensitivity, is it linear or logarithmic? Assuming more room for electronics, how much more electronics can be included and aren't those elements getting smaller with every new sensor?

I'm participating in this discussion, so this applies to me as well, but, as I said before, this mp discussion may be a bit silly. The real question is, do we want the next sensor optimized for sensitivity or resolution or a compromise?
Well, I am an electrical engineer. And physics people seem to say that we don't need to worry about photon shot noise (at least yet?). Electronics noise can most definitely be improved and is getting smaller, but there is a physical limit on how small certain components can get, i.e. decoupling capacitors which are used in a lot of electronics to remove power noise from the signal. The capacitance of such components is determined by the physical diameter of the plates. But there are certainly other things that can be optimized in the electronic world aside from that.
01-22-2010, 07:10 AM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by pingflood Quote
Who do you think makes Canon's FF sensors?
Who's Canon? You're right, I should've mentioned them (I'll add them in to the post). Canon manufacture their own sensors, and I think they'd rather blow their factories up than allow somebody else to use them in their cameras. When I made the list I was thinking only of FF sensors that would be available for purchase.

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01-22-2010, 07:51 AM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by Miserere Quote
Who's Canon? You're right, I should've mentioned them (I'll add them in to the post). Canon manufacture their own sensors, and I think they'd rather blow their factories up than allow somebody else to use them in their cameras. When I made the list I was thinking only of FF sensors that would be available for purchase.

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There will always be a section missing in every poll. :ugh:
01-22-2010, 06:07 PM   #57
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I''m agnostic the MP question (and FF too, for that matter.) At this point, for me, noise reduction rather increased resolution is the priority. Even with my bird photography, it's noise that's the major IQ issue.
01-22-2010, 06:09 PM   #58
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The poll is broken. There's no "200+ megapixels" option.

That's what I want, with noiseless ISO 51200, full detail retention, and 20 EV dynamic range. And I want it for the price of a six-pack of Coke Zero.

Hey, go big or go home, right? Physics shmysics.
01-23-2010, 12:21 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by Quicksand Quote
The poll is broken. There's no "200+ megapixels" option.

That's what I want, with noiseless ISO 51200, full detail retention, and 20 EV dynamic range. And I want it for the price of a six-pack of Coke Zero.

Hey, go big or go home, right? Physics shmysics.



I picked the 12mp because low light is more important to me. Plus with the fractal enlargement software that is available, I'd be able to print as large as I will ever need to.
02-02-2010, 04:12 PM   #60
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C'mon everyone, get your vote in. We need to reach 1000 votes so we can claim a meaningful result

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