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General photography questions and answers: Discuss Pixels...Hi, trying to get my head around the significance of the pixel explosion. Being a good boy I was always ...
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Old 24-04-2008, 23:01   #1 (permalink)
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Pixels

Hi,
trying to get my head around the significance of the pixel explosion. Being a good boy I was always taught to "fill the frame" so I don't hanker after more and more pixels as I have quite enough to make my A4 prints and don't want to buy the printer that prints as big as a wall, even less inclined to want to buy the ink
However, to get to the point, will the compressed image used by my printer have less noise in proportion to the increased amount of pixels used in the camera image or not
Ps I never used to get much noise until I got a better monitor
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Old 25-04-2008, 00:33   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

The short answer is yes: a 12MP shot printed at A4 would appear to have less visible noise than a 6MP shot printed at A4... assuming that both shots had the same per-pixel luma and chroma noise percentage levels are present in both images.

A doubling of resolution results in about a 40% larger image area, so whilst it's not an exact science, you could reasonably expect to have 40% less noise in your images - assuming all else is equal at the sensor level.
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Old 25-04-2008, 11:03   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

Thanks for the reply
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Old 25-04-2008, 11:23   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

I always thought that as the more pixels you have in a given sensor size the smaller they are and so there are less photons / pixel.

This means that they have to be more sensitive to the photons falling on to them. This in turn makes them more susceptible to electronic and thermally generated noise. The pixel race is then a balancing act in how well the electronics and software can deal with the extra noise form the smaller pixels.

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Old 25-04-2008, 19:17   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

Anthraquinone has it just about right.

Noise in a CMOS sensor isn't like grain in a film. In theory, you can't see the pixels once you get enough to have them bleed into one another in the print.

Something that's always given me pause for thought is that each pixel is sensitive to one of the three primary colours (red, green and blue in most current sensors) so surely pixel count needs to be divided by three to get the true image array size?

Perhaps they give out the correct figure and my 10MP sensor actually has thirty million sites!

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Old 25-04-2008, 22:53   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

Can't imagine the sales people missing out on 30 million somehow. Still I could be wrong
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Old 25-04-2008, 23:54   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Pixels

Take a looksee here...

Bayer filter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Most sensors a Bayer-type array. The demosaicing can't work right up to the very edge of the sensor because it relies on data from all the surrounding photosensors, and at the edge they run out! That's why the total number of pixels and the number of effective pixels are different.
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