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More Pixels Let You Get More Detail From Your Originals.

One of the first digital cameras that I owned was the Olympus C-2000Z. This was way back in the year 2000. With its 3X zoom lens it had a sensor able to record images 1600 x 1200 pixels – roughly 2.5 megapixels. I treasured this digital camera since it allowed me to bypass the all of the film, darkroom and scanning steps and go directly to the computer screen. While the consensus is that 35mm film is roughly equivalent to 20 megapixel resolution, the quality of printed images from the C-2000Z would not match those made with film but they were certainly adequate for computer display.

Of course we’ve witnessed so many amazing improvements in technology these past twenty years and many would argue that digital imaging quality has surpassed that of film.

Since then I’ve been lucky enough (or unlucky according to my wife) to own a succession of digital cameras. With each new model the sensor resolution among other features has steadily increased. For a few years I have been using the Sony A7 III camera. This is a full-frame, mirrorless device with a 24 megapixel sensor and has proven to deliver excellent images under a large variety of shooting conditions. This camera had about the equivalent image quality as my ancient 35mm film cameras about 6000 x 4000 pixels.

A few years ago I upgraded to a newer Sony A7R IV camera mostly for its advanced autofocus and high burst shooting capabilities. It also gave me another feature – a sensor that captures 9500 x 6300 pixels – an astounding 60 megapixels of imaging data.

Shortly thereafter on my next photo excursion by car, I headed out west with the A7R IV.

Below is a photograph that I took when I stopped to shoot a large cattle feed lot near Ogallala, NE. I was standing across the Interstate highway about 100 yards from the lot fence.



The size of the original image is 9504 x 6336 pixels but for this web article the original has been reduced to 600 x 400 pixels (or 1200 x 800 if you click to enlarge)
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Below I have cut portions from the original image to show you the amount of detail this camera is capable of recording. These portions are not enlargements. They are part of the original 9500 x 6300 image that have been cropped to fit on the computer screen.



Here are the cattle that are standing next to fence adjacent to the highway. You can clearly see the detail of these animals.




Here you can see the silo with the logo towards the back of the feed lot.



Lastly is an even smaller potion of the original image that shows even more detail of the silo.



Hopefully you can see why high resolution equipment is useful when shooting subjects such as scenery or wildlife. Capturing so much detail enables you to crop portions of your original photograph to achieve a desired composition.


Written by: Arnie Lee


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