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siobhankelly

How much difference will an increase in megapixels make?

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Hi Brian,

I'm tossing up between the new canon r6 and r5. The only thing tempting me towards the r5 is the fact that it has 45 megapixels compared to the r6 with 20mp. I often shoot family sessions outdoors with kids that run around (which is why I'm swapping from nikon to canon as the af and subject tracking is insane), and I feel like having the extra mp will allow more aggressive cropping, especially as I'm only going to have one lens to start (24-70).

Question is, do I really need the extra megapixels, or will it realistically make no difference?

I do often blow photos up quite big - have done a few A1s recently with my current nikon d750 which has 24mp, and they're usually fine, but I wouldn't say no to making them even clearer. Worth mentioning too I have a commercial shoot coming up and the images are going to be used huge as bus shelter posters and on a billboard.

What would you do? I do have the money to spend, but I don't want to throw away the extra $2k if it's actually not going to make much of a difference.

Cheers,

Siobhan

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On 5/25/2021 at 7:50 PM, siobhankelly said:

Question is, do I really need the extra megapixels, or will it realistically make no difference?

No. That's just marketing trying to convince you that more is better. It also gives fodder for the "Measurebators" to argue / start flame-wars in online forums. LOL!!

While it's true that you will get more detail the higher the Megapixel Count of the sensor, you have to consider where those images will be viewed. FB or Instagram on a Smart Phone? Maybe Flickr or 500px? You really don't need THAT MUCH in terms of MP. What more Megapixels do is allow you to crop in Post. Sometimes this works to your benefit, but most other times it allows people to be lazy and not move themselves to a better spot and re-compose. ;) 

One of my biggest regrets when it comes to a camera purchase, is my Nikon D850 and it's stupid 45.1MP. You see, the more Megapixels you have, the larger the Raw files, which means the more resources from your computer will be required to support said files. Let me clarify...

I bought the D850. I used my existing 24-70 f/2.8G and 70-200 f/2.8G lens. Turns out the D850 is hungry for the absolute best glass and my trusty old lenses really couldn't keep up. So add a new 24-70 f/2.8E and 70-200 f/2.8E. That's about $4000 or so after the D850 purchase. THEN the Raw files increased from around 26MB per file to almost 100MB per Raw file. My existing computer, which worked fine with my D4s and D700 practically cried out in pain. So I had to buy a new computer, upgrade it to 64GB, and then purchase a 12TB External HD. So that's a few thousand right there.

See where I'm going with this?

Not to mention I had to buy all new memory cards, because 32GB was equivalent to 8GB cards on my old cameras, and 64GB / 128GB have become my new normal.

That stupid D850 has costed me so much money. If I had to do it all over again, I would have never bought a 45MP camera!

Believe it or not, I have friends who have shot for Toyota and other manufactures doing commercial work...national campaign stuff and they are shooting with 12-16MP cameras!! You know what 45MP (or larger) cameras allow you to do? Be lazy and give you the ability to crop severely. The measure-bators will argue with me and tell me about all the fine detail and blah-blah-blah. Honestly? I'd rather you have a 24MP-ish camera and Professional Grade Glass vs a high MP camera and consumer-grade glass. Make sense?

I've been published with a 12MP and 16MP camera. Flagship cameras that photograph the Olympics are around 20MP or so. I think of a 45MP camera body like a WWII "Bomber" and a Pro-Grade body like a Nikon D4s like a "Fighter Jet." When I shoot with my D850, I'm forced to slow down. Fortunately, my D850 is just for traveling and landscape work. When I shoot weddings and racing events, or anything important, my go-to body is my D4s.

My next camera will probably be a Nikon Z6 II with 24-70 f/2.8 S. That's 24MP.

Oh, Billboards...you don't need much in terms of resolution. In reality, you can print ANY size if you have at least 12MP or larger. Even 10MP is fine. The DPI on Billboards is between 5-7 DPI. That's right...single digits.

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I was watching this video shortly before answering your question. He shoots with a R5. GIve it a watch:
 

 

 

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40 minutes ago, Brian said:

My next camera will probably be a Nikon Z6 II with 24-70 f/2.8 S. That's 24MP

Hey Brian,

 

Thanks for all of that - I think you have talked me off the edge a bit so that’s helpful haha. 
worth asking, if you’re looking into the z6 II, how does it stack up to the R6? I am a Nikon shooter, it’s the eye autofocus that’s drawing me to the R6 (I shoot animals and kids). Obviously cheaper for me to move to the z6 II as I already own the lenses but if the af is trailing behind then it’s worth the swap. Would love to hear your thoughts!

 

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Sony and Nikon are better in the AF department when it comes to Mirrorless. But things might have changed. I really haven’t seriously looked at Mirrorless; I have enough crap and the thought of rebuilding a whole other system…I have other stuff to buy and Credit Cards to pay off. :)

Why not use my F Mount Lenses and the FTZ Adapter? Because in order to take full advantage of the Nikon Z system and all that it offers, especially when it comes to stabilization, you need the “S” lenses. So buying a third 24-70, a third 70-200 and then a second 14-24…

“Meh.” 

I personally can’t stand Canon’s menu system and prefer Nikon’s. It’s just the way my brain works; I need menus and letters instead of tiny symbols and numbers. 

You might want to download manuals of the bodies you are interested in and give them a read. See how easy they are to operate. Even though the AF system might be “better” for now, it won’t do you any good fumbling through the menus and missing the shot. Take a look at some YouTube reviews with animal eye focus and certain camera bodies as some websites might be getting kick-backs for promoting a certain camera body. 
 

Remember, Mirrorless and Animal Eye Focus is brand new technology-wise. Don’t fall for the Marketing, glass is what matters, not some gizmo that you think will take your photography “To the NEXT LEVEL!!” 

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