Understanding image sharpness: part 7: Digital cameras vs. film

by Volker Weber

"How many pixels does it take for a digital sensor to outperform 35mm film?" I became interested in the question after I read a rave review by Michael Reichmann of Luminous-Landscape.com of the 3.1 megapixel Canon EOS D30, introduced in late 2000 for $3,000 US. In D30 Vs. Provia 100F, Reichmann stated, "It is inescapable that the D30 produces sharper, better looking images than the scanned film combination at sizes up to about 10 X 13," and [compared to Provia] "the D30 image shows finer detail." A pretty impressive claim for a camera that produces a small 9.3 megabyte file (for 24 bit color).

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