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Friday, January 26, 2007

Beyond Megapixels

Today's camera manufacturers are thinking about more than pixels

Beyond Megapixels

The recent history of digital photography could be described as a megapixel war. With technological advancements that often come every six months, new cameras with higher pixel counts are available almost constantly. It isn't uncommon for photographers to find themselves buying a digital camera to replace the model they purchased only the year before in the endless arms race to garner the most megapixels.

Walking into a camera store, many a photographer automatically assumes that if a camera has more megapixels, it takes a better picture and, therefore, is the better buy. Such an assumption doesn't reveal the whole truth, however. The reality is that although higher megapixels promise bigger prints, pixel count doesn't tell a photographer much about shutter lag, battery consumption or color accuracy. And as photographers go out and use their cameras, they soon discover that their high-resolution camera isn't always translating into equally high performance.

Today, cameras are more than just the sum of their megapixels. With digital cameras offering resolutions of up to 8 megapixels for less than $1,000, the ability for photographers to produce quality enlargements is available to everyone, not just the pros. As a result, camera manufacturers are competing on a much broader battlefield, each trying to distinguish themselves.



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