The New Races in Photography
By Gareth R Handa
No matter what type of photographer you are, be it a wedding photographer, sports photographer or simply do it as a hobby, you will be fully aware of the mega pixel race. Signs of that seems to be going at a slower pace nowadays. Canon always use to push the highest volume of pixels with the cameras, while Nikon made a full effort to stay at low pixel volume. Things have taken an unexpected turn recent months with Nikon now pushing a silly amount of pixels with their D800 at 38MP and Canon deciding to stay low at 22MP. Canon has also put their remarkable pro focus system in their latest incarnation of their mid-pro camera. This will please all photographers no doubt.
It is going be an interesting time in the coming years to see where the camera manufacturer's loyalties lay. New races are going to show their face including the race for low noise high ISO sensors as well as a focus on increased dynamic range. The trouble is there are still some who want an increased megapixel count. Before varying models lacked some features but they could still be used across the board. Nowadays wedding photographers are happy at 22MP, but landscape photographers as well as some studio photographers who shoot models want more megapixels.
The biggest problem with high resolution files is the storage space they require and the processing power required to manipulate them be it in Lightroom or Photoshop. With the rising costs of electricity, your PC or Mac is going to be doing some pretty hefty processing to get those files working the way you want. The new version of Photoshop coming in May (CS6) supports graphic card acceleration more than ever. However, it is still not match for using lower resolution files and then using the graphics acceleration.
It's not only your storage space that is taken up. You've got to think of backups on optical media. Even the biggest discs can only handle 50GB and while that was plenty before, 38MP files are going to chew that up in now time.
In the coming months of photography, we're going even more exciting product lines from EVIL cameras to Four Micro Thirds. While Canon hasn't jumped on board of mirror-less just yet, you can bet they are already hard at work on a launch very soon. SLR's are certainly here to stay, but the previous non pro market including the Rebel line will no doubt see a shift to smaller versions.
I'm a photographer and do the odd freelance work. As with many Hertfordshire Photographers and around the world I love to improve my work. I offer solutions in and around my local region.
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