Guide for determining print size vs resolution

November 27, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

When someone says, I have a high resolution camera, that hardly means much, when it comes to the finished product, meaning "will my photo print at the highest resolution"?   For example, if you crop a photo, you can lose resolution and if your intent is making those extra large prints, you need to know just how big you can go.  If your subject is shot from a distance, and you want to crop just the subject and eliminate all the insignificant "additionals" in the scene, your crop will lose resolution.

That's just a very basic understanding to consider, but here is a guide you may want to keep for referral.

Capture Resolution
Video Display
Print Size
2x3"
4x5"/4x6"
5x7"
8x10"
11x14"
16x20"
20x30"
320x240

OK

Good

OK

Crap

Crap

Crap

Crap

Crap

640x480
0.3Megapixel

Good

Excellent

Good

Crap

Crap

Crap

Crap

Crap

800x600

Excellent

Photo Quality

Very Good

Reasonable

Crap

Crap

Crap

Crap

1024x768

Excellent

Photo Quality

Excellent

Good

OK

Crap

Crap

Crap

1280x960
1 MP

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Very Good

Good

Crap

Crap

Crap

1536x1180

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

Very Good

OK

Crap

Crap

1600x1200
2MP

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Very Good

OK

OK

Crap

2048x1536
3 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

Good

OK

OK

2240x1680
4 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Very Good

Good

OK

2560x1920
5 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

Very Good

Very Good

3032x2008
6 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

Very Good

3072x2304
7 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

Excellent

3264x2448
8 Megapixel

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Excellent

10 Megapixel +

Excellent

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality

Photo Quality


Crap

Horribly pixelated blocky mess, like something out of 1987

OK

Looks reasonable enough, but nowhere near photo quality

Good

Pretty good all round, with a fair bit of detail

Very Good

This will be fine for most uses, unless you get up reeeeal close

Excellent

As good as a photo for most purposes

Photo Quality

Woohoo! Fantastic quality print, full of detail and perfect for your picture frame or for your showing off your very best shots. 

 

 

 


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