7 Dec 2016

Photography Experiment: 4 Megapixels Are Enough

People who don't understand photography well enough are swayed by the megapixel numbers that manufacturers brandish. Actually, it doesn't matter much. But at what point does it stop mattering? To find out, I took a 15MP (megapixel) photo:



(Right-click the photo and open it in a new tab to see it full-sized)

And resized it to various resolutions like 9MP:



4MP:



2MP:



And 1MP:




Looking at these full-screen on my 5k iMac, I find that the 1MP photo is blurry and terrible. There's a big jump in quality to 2MP, which is okay. The 4MP photo is great, and I'd happily use it for any purpose. Further increases in resolution don't matter. I can tell the difference between 4 and 8 or 15 only if I compare them very closely and carefully, and even then the difference is so minor it doesn't matter.

4MP is all you need for great photos.

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