How Important Are Megapixels?

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Megapixels are an important part of determining what a person can do with their camera, but they don't tell everything. Find out why it's not enough to get a camera with good pixel resolution with help from a videographer in this free video on megapixels and cameras.

Part of the Video Series: Digital & Video Cameras
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Video Transcript

Hi my name is James Flint. I'm a photographer and videographer and I'd like to talk to you about the importance of megapixels. Megapixels while they are a very important part of determining what you are going to be able to do with your camera they don't tell you everything but let me first explain to you the megapixel ranges and what they're intended for. Megapixels can range anywhere from one to numbers of twelve and higher. It is important to understand that anything two megapixels or less you're not going to get any prints from that, you are not going to make any photographs even the smallest 4 X 6. Less than two megapixels you're only really going to be using that for web based things and computer display things. Anything from two to six megapixels is going to give you the ability to make prints but you're not going to be able to do any enlargements. Sometimes five and six megapixel cameras you can make 8 X 10's but you're not going to get any larger than that. If you want to do 8 X 10, 8 X 12, 11X 14, 11 X 17 or anything larger than that you're going to need more than six megapixels. Here's where it gets confusing is you can't simply look at a camera and say o'kay it's giving me ten megapixels, this must be a really good camera because the megapixels is telling you the total pixel resolution but that is still generated through the camera lens and the camera body so it is important to not only get a camera with really good megapixels but a camera that has a good camera lens and a good camera body and the best way to determine that is just to go with a major brand like a Nikon or a Canon or something of the sort so that's the basics on megapixels.

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