Is Canon's A95 reaching too hard in the megapixel race?

Discussion in 'Canon' started by Warren, Oct 16, 2004.

  1. Warren

    Warren Guest

    I am new to digital photography but from my research have found the Canon A
    series digicams to have an appealing operational flexibility and good
    quality picture taking. I had my choice narrowed down to A75 or A85 ( more
    cropping flexibilty) until I noticed the A80. The A80 had the same
    resolution as the A85 with the added benefit of a very versatile LCD
    viewfinder and nicer build quality.

    Now the A95 is out, to replace the A80 (nicer LCD view finder, more special
    exposure options), but my concern is that they've increased the resolution
    to 5 MP, which is way more than I need. I'm also starting to read more and
    more about purple fringing, lack of dynamic range, and image noise at Iso
    100 and higher in these 5MP digicams. Have the manufactuerers gone too far
    with this megapixel race? Is the A80 a better picture taker than the A95?
    I'm starting to get nervous, but maybe unnecessarily. Anyone seen a web
    site or had real world experience where both cameras can be compared?

    Thank you in advance for your opinions and advice.
    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
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  2. Warren

    Warren Guest

    I guess I'm also wondering if the purple fringing and image noise is lower
    on the 3MP camera (A75) versus higher MP cameras (A85 & A95).
    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
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  3. To some extent, that's two apples and one orange you are comparing.
    The A75 and A85 are lower-cost cameras with small CCDs that are bound to
    be somewhat noisy. The A80 and its successor the A95 use the larger
    "1/1.8 inch" CCDs that are also used in the Canon G series and Sxx
    series. The larger CCD should give lower noise at the same number of
    pixels, and even with slightly more (e.g. 5 vs 4 MP).

    Dave Martindale, Oct 16, 2004
  4. Warren

    Warren Guest

    Thank you, I missed that detail in my research.

    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
  5. Warren

    Warren Guest

    That's a good point I hadn't considered about image noise, thank you.
    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
  6. Warren

    ECM Guest

    I've heard that the purple fringing is an issue with the Canon Axx series
    optics, not the sensor per se. The small sensor doesn't help, though; it
    dictates the configuration of the optics to an extent. I have an oly C-5060,
    it also has a 1/1.8" 5 Mpixel sensor, and it has virtually no fringing
    issues that I've been able to elicit. I test drove a Canon A80 before I got
    the C-5060; it was a nice little camera with lots of plusses, but the purple
    fringing was noticable and I ended up taking it back..

    Noise is a separate issue, and is much more a function of the sensor
    size.... but you won't get much improvement until you get to digital SLR
    sized sensors, AFAIK. The new 7 Mpixel size sensors are being reported (eg. as usable up to iso 200 with little noise - if this is a big
    issue for you, you should look at some of those.

    I'm not really promoting the C-5060 - it's a different type of camera, and
    it has it's own issues. I'm happy enough with it, though - I've spent a bit
    of time learning it's limits, and I can live with them. In the end, no
    camera is perfect, you'll just have to decide what you're willing to put up

    Good Luck!
    ECM, Oct 16, 2004
  7. Warren

    Warren Guest

    Although I'm obviously no expert on chromatic abberations I believe you are
    correct that purple fringing starts with the lense, but I'm not sure how
    much lense designers can control the physics of light behaviour in lenses.
    Where camera designers can have an impact seems to be in controlling the
    CCD's sensitivity to IR & UV light, because apparently the blue & red pixels
    are sensitive to these wavelengths and result in the purple fringing effect.
    Different camera designers may have some "tricks" in CCD design to reduce
    this sensitivity to IR & UV light, but I don't know if this really true.
    The only "tricks" the end user seems to have is (a) use IR & UV free light
    sources for indoor illumination or (b) make sure you keep your photo
    exposure under control

    Your bottom line comment is probably correct though, every camera design has
    it's pluses & minuses and in the end you have to decide on what is most
    important. I'll do some research on the C-5060 and try to see if I can see
    a difference myself. Thanks for your comments.
    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
  8. Warren

    Warren Guest

    I agree the C-5060 is a very nice camera, but quite a few notches above a
    A95 both in price and designed usage. Beautiful pictures but a little too
    much of a camera for me. Nice to see though that the techology for good
    pictures is out there.
    Warren, Oct 16, 2004
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