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General Discussions Discuss Question for Jacknife or any other geek in the Community Center forums; Hey Jac, Mr. iwannabeminnie and I just bought a digital camera, but we are looking at buying another one. What is the difference between a 6 megapixel camera (effective) and ...
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    iwannabeminnie's Avatar
    iwannabeminnie is offline I'm old! I'm like the cryptkeeper!
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    Question for Jacknife or any other geek

    Hey Jac,

    Mr. iwannabeminnie and I just bought a digital camera, but we are looking at buying another one. What is the difference between a 6 megapixel camera (effective) and a 12 megapixel camera (via interpolation)? We don't know anything about digital cameras (you point and click, right?).

    Also, I asked the "geeks" at Best Buy this past weekend if they carried "Image Tanks" and they had no clue what I was talking about. I said to the one guy with the "Geek Squad" button, "and you call yourself a geek?"

    So the long and short of this question is, what camera would you recommend for a couple of old fogies who want good (not fuzzy) pictures of their upcoming vacation? My husband is also a Real Estate broker and would like to use it to take pictures of the houses his sales people list to use in advertising, so they need to be sharp images. However, keep in mind that we are OLD and not so technologically savvy.

    Thanks! I knew you could help,
    T-Nina

    PS. You know I use the word "geek" in the most loving and affectionate way!
    They call me "Nana"

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    zcook9 is offline Not close enough to the magic!
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    Quote Originally Posted by iwannabeminnie
    Hey Jac,

    Mr. iwannabeminnie and I just bought a digital camera, but we are looking at buying another one. What is the difference between a 6 megapixel camera (effective) and a 12 megapixel camera (via interpolation)? We don't know anything about digital cameras (you point and click, right?).
    Well, as far as I know, the higher the pixel, the better the image/ picture.
    If I'm right, please, someone let me know .
    Laura
    DISNEY SCRAPPER

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    I wish that I had stumbled upon this post a little earlier today. I need to go to work now, but I'll try to answer some of your questions quickly.

    Megapixels: Yes, the higher the megapixels the larger the picture. Or more percicely, the higher the definition of a picture. A lower megapixel camera taking a 800x600 could have a lower resolution than a higher megapixel camera taking the same picture at 800x600. The reason for this is something callled DPI (or dots-per-inch). The more image pixels (dots) that are packed into an inch of printable/viewable area, the better the picture looks.

    But unless you want to print out poster-sized pictures, I doubt that you'll need anything greater than say a 3 to 5 Megapixel camera. These work well at taking pictures that make excellent postcard sized prints -- and pretty decent looking 8x10 prints (depending on your printer).

    There's a lot of other things that I could/will talk about, but I need to go before I'm late for work. There's an excellent resource on the net called "Digital Photography Review that I would recommend browsing through until I return. Chances are that if you have a question over Digital cameras, that DPR will have an answer.

    I'll also answer your questions over the ImageTank. I believe that I may have provided a link to a site that sells the ImageTanks in one of my posts.

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    MandaBella is offline "She who must be loved."
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    This was from another post Jac made last week.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jacknife
    I'm assuming that you don't have a laptop, or any other device that you can take on your trip with a large hard drive?

    Shortly after purchasing my camera a few years ago, I was also looking for a fairly cheap way to store vacation pictures. I found a device called the ImageTank and purchased the 40Gb version. We have taken the ImageTank with us on several trips, and still have only used a fraction of the hard drive with thousands of pictures on-file. (Still have around 34Gb free for future pictures).

    The only problem with the ImageTank is that is only serves as a storage device, and not as a photo viewing device. However for me, it has more than payed for itself considering the number of discs and/or memory sticks that it has saved me from purchasing over the years.

    Please keep in mind that although this was the perfect solution for me, it may not be what you're wanting/needing. Anyway, I just wanted to throw this out there in case you're interested. Good luck!
    Amanda
    always plotting, planning, and looking forward to our next adventure...


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    iwannabeminnie's Avatar
    iwannabeminnie is offline I'm old! I'm like the cryptkeeper!
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    I read the Image Tank post last week, that is how I knew to ask the Best Buy guys about it. They all thought I was an idiot because they had never heard of it. I knew Jac would know about the cameras. We have come across some that say "#of megapixels via interpolation" or "#of megapixels (effective)" and wondered what the difference was between "via interpolation" and "effective" if any. We don't need anything fancy, but we would like nice pictures, probably no larger than 5x7 for anything, but mostly 3x4 or whatever size a standard print is.
    They call me "Nana"

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    Although Best Buy is one of my favorite stores, they don't always have what I'm looking for. In fact, I'm usually hard pressed to find my "technogeek" toys in any store. (one of my most recent purchases was from Japan, because the device isn't even sold in the US) ...But anyway, back to the topic at hand...

    One of the links that I posted for the ImageTank was for a site called InsideComputer.com (owned by Yahoo shops). The ImageTank costs around $230 for the 40Gb, but it's worth it.

    Interpolation is just a fancy word for estimated/assumed/calculated/etc. What it means is that the sensor that takes the picture isn't really capable of the high-megapixel rating shown on the camera specifications... But instead, it will take adjacent pixels as seen by the sensor and will insert an extra pixel into the image that closely resembles a cross between the two. For example, if one pixel (dot) is red and the one next to it is blue then the interpolation process will insert another pixel (dot) between the two that would be some shade of purple/magenta. Interpolation helps to make a picture less block-like, and more smooth.

    Some cameras may also utilize interpolation to help compensate for limitations of the sensor(s). Just like there's different cameras, there are different sensor types. (Just to help make the whole camera thing even more confusing.)

    Effective pixels are simply the total number of pixels that the sensor is able to detect. In other words, the actual amount of resolution that the camera is able to measure with the sensor. Every digital camera will have an effective pixel range - even the ones that utilize interpolation.

    Unless you're wanting to take high-fidelity photographs, I wouldn't really worry about pixel interpolation or effective pixels.

    Quote Originally Posted by iwannabeminnie
    So the long and short of this question is, what camera would you recommend for a couple of old fogies who want good (not fuzzy) pictures of their upcoming vacation? My husband is also a Real Estate broker and would like to use it to take pictures of the houses his sales people list to use in advertising, so they need to be sharp images.
    In order to answer this question I would need to know more details of how you're planning on using the camera. Are you planning on taking mostly day time vacation shots of buildings and people standing still? Or are you wanting to take night time shots of WDW? Action shots elsewhere, etc?

    There are different cameras out there for different uses. Each may excel in one area, but severely lack features in other areas. Just expect not to get all of the features you want in a camera unless you want to shell out a few grand on a camera.

    As for my recommendation, I would suggest either a Kodak or Sony 3.2 to 5 Megapixel camera to start out. These cameras usually run around $200 to $350 and tend to take excellent shots for the point-n-shoot camera users. The pictures in my gallery were taken with a Sony Cybershot 3.2 Megapixel camera, and it does the job pretty well. I have to admit that my camera can be a pain when it comes to taking action shot or low-light/indoor shots, but it's still a good all-around camera.

    There are still more things to be said about digital cameras, however I think I'm going to stop short of writing a book in this response. Anyway, I hope this helps to answer your questions.

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    Jiminy Cricket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iwannabeminnie
    Hey Jac,

    Mr. iwannabeminnie and I just bought a digital camera, but we are looking at buying another one. What is the difference between a 6 megapixel camera (effective) and a 12 megapixel camera (via interpolation)? We don't know anything about digital cameras (you point and click, right?).

    Also, I asked the "geeks" at Best Buy this past weekend if they carried "Image Tanks" and they had no clue what I was talking about. I said to the one guy with the "Geek Squad" button, "and you call yourself a geek?"

    So the long and short of this question is, what camera would you recommend for a couple of old fogies who want good (not fuzzy) pictures of their upcoming vacation? My husband is also a Real Estate broker and would like to use it to take pictures of the houses his sales people list to use in advertising, so they need to be sharp images. However, keep in mind that we are OLD and not so technologically savvy.

    Thanks! I knew you could help,
    T-Nina

    PS. You know I use the word "geek" in the most loving and affectionate way!
    For general pics about 4 megapixels is just fine. Like everythine else, the more megapixels the higher the cost. The Nikon Coolpix cameras with 3X zoom are great, or Sony, Fuji, Canon, or Kodak. Most of the pics I have in my gallery were taken with a Nikon Coolpix 2.0 megapixel camera with 3 X zoom, and the pics are fine. If you want to print at least 4" X 6" size then the 4.0 megapixels are super. Sony has some awesome pocket size cameras now for about $380. You can also get a 5.0 megapixel Kodak DX7500 with 10X zoom at Sam's Club for $366, including charging dock and all the cables. It takes awesome pics, but it is the size of a regular 35 mm film camera.

    I also have a Kodak 4.0 megapixel camera with 10X zoom, and DW has an older Kodak 4.0 megapixel with 3X zoom.

    Don't go for the advertising that quotes "digital zoom" it only makes a section of the pic bigger and worse in quality.

    I get most of my electronics at amazon.com or at HH Gregg, where you can "negotiate" a good price. We just got $300 off an advertised HDTV by haggling.

    Most electronic items are obsolete in 6 months or so. You can usually tell if the item is "on sale", or if they have "limited quantities".

    P.S. I have been a "geek" for over 45 years, and I can cook!!!
    Last edited by Jiminy Cricket; 06-22-2005 at 03:59 PM.
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    rvastro is offline C-Ticket Holder
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    If you are able, try to buy your camera at a dedicated camera shop instead of a place like Best Buy. I asked the folks in their camera department about changing the ISO values and if the camera could take long exposures, etc. Blank stare. Their recommendation was to buy the camera and read the instructions. NOT!! I left and purchased my camera at a differnt store. Camera store employees are way more knowlegable about those items then BB would be

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    iwannabeminnie's Avatar
    iwannabeminnie is offline I'm old! I'm like the cryptkeeper!
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    Thank you all so much for your help. Nothing like having your own personal "geek" team when you need it! Love you all!
    They call me "Nana"

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