The first question asked when you shows your new digital camera to your friend is obvious . How many Mega Pixels it have ? . You will boast on the 20 megapixel which will make the guy with that 4 megapixel feel inferior.
By the way what these figures means to a person and does it hold any significance to his digital photos ?
What is Megapixel and how you are going to calculate it ?
A Pixel means Picture Element . It is the basic unit of measurement of your screen . the smaller the picture element , the finer will be the picture . The resolution of the picture is the multiplication factor of number of pixels that can be arranged horizontally and number that can be arranged vertically.
ie currently I am staring at a monitor of 1280 pixel wide and 800 pixel high ie a screen resolution of 1280 X 800 pixels that is equal to 1024000 pixels . if I divide the figure by thousand , I will get the figure in kilo pixels and if I again divide it by 1000 I will get the figure in Mega Pixels . my screen has a resolution of 1.024 Mega Pixels which I can round off and announce as one Mega pixel .
so my digial snap from my old cannon shows a resolution of 2272 X 1704 If i look at the figures , you can see that the resolution is almost doubled for width and height. Since the screen resolution is the multiplication of width X height , rather than just doubling , it will be 4 times my original resolution
2274 X 1704 = 3871488 . divided by 1000,000 you will get approx 3.8 megapixel which my camera claims as 4 Mega pixel.
So the increase from 1 to 4 megapixel occur just by doubling the number of picture element in width and height. So naturally the increase to 8 mega pixel does not means double the number of pixels . If you just double the number of pixels , the mega pixel will quadruple . Really good news for camera companies .
More Megapixel , The better …. is it So ?
unless you need to print your family photos to a huge billboard with a back lit , you don’t need resolution more than 4 megapixel or so . The quality of your picture depends more on the lens , the image processing circuitry and the quality of the CCD or CMOS sensor it is using.
Keeping the same sensor and increasing the resolution will normally have negative results of noise also.
So the next time you shop for your camera do not get trapped by a high mega pixel figure . If everything else remains same do not pay more for the mega pixels , and do not ask for the megapixel of your friends new camera.