Every time a new phone or a digital camera is launched, it very well seen that the megapixel it sports keeps increasing every time and the picture quality just keeps getting better with every newly launched device. For a layman the logic is, the more the megapixel of a camera, the better the picture quality. But what exactly is a megapixel? Digital images produced by the camera are made up of thousands of tiny, tile-like picture elements and that tile-like element is a pixel and a megapixel is equal to one million pixels.
Resolution of a camera is the amount of detail that a particular camera can capture and the same is measured in pixels. A better pixel-ed camera can capture larger pictures without blurry or grainy effect. Apart from megapixels, camera sensor, processor and the optical quality of a lens also play vital role in producing a good quality picture. The number of pixels in a photo can be determined by a megapixel rating. If the resolution of the photo is 4,000 by 3,000 pixels, then multiply the two numbers after which we get 12 million, so it’s a 12-megapixel photo. A 24 MP camera will not give twice as wide as 12 MP camera images; it’ll only be 41% wider and 41% taller. If the width and height in pixels of an image created by the camera is known, then it’s easy to calculate the number of megapixels the camera gets. For example if width and height are 640 by 480 then it is multiplied to get 307,200 pixels total which means the camera has 3 MP.
While deciding on a camera for buying, one should be aware of the megapixel one needs. The megapixel can be decided by planning the maximum print size of the photo print you need and if you wish to do any cropping while editing or in-camera itself. For a typical 6×4 print 2 MP is enough, for 10×8 a 5 MP and 14×11 a 7 MP while if the need is just to watch it on Computer or upload on net, 1 to 3 MP is enough.
If the requirement is for bigger prints, huge enlargements or any other demanding applications by a advanced user, it is best to buy a camera with the maximum megapixels as per the affordability of the buyer. But the thing to be kept in mind is that the camera should be a professional one that is a SLR camera. The image sensor chip in the professional cameras is big and is able to produce sharp and vibrant images that could be framed to enhance the interiors of a home. Apart from megapixel, also look for other features of the camera and the specifications such as the size of the camera’s zoom lens and it’s overall weight. After all, you have to carry the camera everywhere to click good pictures and for that the weight plays an important role.
The below table will give an idea about the result each type of camera will produce.