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Megapixel vs Noise
Is that the higher the megapixels, the noise will be less?.

Thanks for advice...

Comments (6)

No - exactly the opposite..

If you take the same sized sensor and divide it into a larger number of pixels, each one will be smaller. So you get higher resolution (more pixels) but each pixel will collect less light, because it has a smaller area, so it's measurement of the light intensity is less accurate. The output from each pixel is therefore weaker and needs greater amplification, which magnifies any noise..

The effect is exactly equivalent to having a small radio: you need to turn the volume up more so that it produces the same amount of sound as a bigger radio. The result is a lot of hiss..

So there is a tradeoff between megapixels (resolution) and noise. manufacturers keep quiet about this because they can sell cameras on the basis of how many pixels they have, sayiing that a 12MP camera is 'better' than an 8MP camera. It isn't, especially if the sensor is small to start with..

The higher noise from the smaller sensors needs more aggressive smoothing to remove it - this involves averaging the output from adjacent pixels and a loss of resolution so there is no point having the extra pixels in the first place. Small cameras with small sensors and a high number of megapixels are useless in low light because each pixel is so tiny and collects so little light that they only work well in bright light..

A DSLR has a sensor about 10x bigger than that of a compact camera; so for the same number of megaixels, each pixel is 10x bigger, collects 10x more light, gives a more accurate measure of the light intensity falling on it, and hence lower noise. This is why DSLRs perform much better than compact cameras in low light..

Best wishesMike..

Comment #1

Mike703 wrote:.

The effect is exactly equivalent to having a small radio: you need toturn the volume up more so that it produces the same amount of soundas a bigger radio. The result is a lot of hiss..

A better analogy is two TV receivers...one with a big, high antenna and another with a small "rabbit ear" antenna on top of the case. The big antenna will receive a strong signal and produce a nice picture. The little antenna will receive a weak signal and the picture will have a lot of noise ("snow")..

So there is a tradeoff between megapixels (resolution) and noise.manufacturers keep quiet about this because they can sell cameras onthe basis of how many pixels they have, sayiing that a 12MP camera is'better' than an 8MP camera. It isn't, especially if the sensor issmall to start with..

They are more devious than that! They just put "12 megapixels" in big, colorful letters on the box. They never say 12 MP is "better". Idiots know instinctively that anything in big, colorful letters is better! .

The higher noise from the smaller sensors needs more aggressivesmoothing to remove it - this involves averaging the output fromadjacent pixels and a loss of resolution so there is no point havingthe extra pixels in the first place. Small cameras with smallsensors and a high number of megapixels are useless in low lightbecause each pixel is so tiny and collects so little light that theyonly work well in bright light..

A DSLR has a sensor about 10x bigger than that of a compact camera;so for the same number of megaixels, each pixel is 10x bigger,collects 10x more light, gives a more accurate measure of the lightintensity falling on it, and hence lower noise. This is why DSLRsperform much better than compact cameras in low light..

No, this is why large sensors perform much better than small sensors. A small camera with a big sensor would deliver great images!.

Here is a good tutorial about Image Quality (IQ):.

Http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/?page_id=11.

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #2

Chuxter wrote:.

No, this is why large sensors perform much better than small sensors.A small camera with a big sensor would deliver great images!.

But a large sensor will require a larger lens to have the same angle of view so it will not be a small camera any more...

Comment #3

Acsmith wrote:.

Chuxter wrote:.

No, this is why large sensors perform much better than small sensors.A small camera with a big sensor would deliver great images!.

But a large sensor will require a larger lens to have the same angleof view so it will not be a small camera any more..

Small and large are relative terms. The OP's question was about MP vs noise and we turned it to a discussion of size vs noise. If he wants low noise, he needs to, "Buy the biggest piece of Silicon he can afford and one with the lowest number of MP he can put up with.".

I wasn't talking about putting the sensor from a 1.5 crop camera (like the Nikon D80) into a Nikon P5100 or Canon G9. I was saying that my Nikon 5700, with a 2/3" sensor and ONLY 5 MP has better IQ than either of these current "prosumers". That's because it has a bigger sensor and fewer MP. The size is indeed bigger, but more because of the 8X zoom than the 13% larger sensor..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700 & Sony R1HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #4

Well, you're unlikely to fit a "full-frame" equivalent of a S3 IS into a small package..

On the other hand, if you were willing to settle for a full-frame digital P&S with a slow 28 - 84mm zoom, you could probably make it pretty small. (There were lots of 35mm P&S film cameras with 3x film zooms that were reasonably small.)..

Comment #5

A DSLR has a sensor about 10x bigger than that of a compact camera;so for the same number of megaixels, each pixel is 10x bigger,collects 10x more light, gives a more accurate measure of the lightintensity falling on it, and hence lower noise. This is why DSLRsperform much better than compact cameras in low light..

No, this is why large sensors perform much better than small sensors.A small camera with a big sensor would deliver great images!.

You're quite right - as usual! I was just making the generalisation that DSLRs have, usually, bigger sensors than compacts..

While we are on the subject - and it is relevant to this thread - I would like to get a compact camera to carry around for social events where a DSLR would be intrusive; the nature of social events is that they often occur indoors, so "as large a piece of silicon as possible" is particularly important. Do you know which current compact has the biggest sensor (and not a ridiculous number of MP)? Sensor size is not a parameter like no. of MP that can easily be searched for..

Best wishesMike..

Comment #6

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