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Megapixel VS Sensor

Today we talk about megapixels VS sensors, for all kind of cameras, from cell phones to DSLR’s.

People get confused about the megapixel of the camera. People think the bigger the number of the camera’s megapixel the more effective will the photograph be and at the end of the day that’s not true because you get an iPhone 8 plus with 12 megapixels.  Now that is big and the quality of the phone photographs is good but then you must think about the phone sensor. The quality of a photograph depends on the camera sensor.

The bigger the sensor of a phone/ DSLR will be the result of a more quality photograph.  When you want to buy yourself a low- end from the high-end camera the most important thing to look out t is the camera sensor. A camera’s sensor is a highly advanced piece of component that captures light through small pixels (also called photosites) and turns them into a digital signal.  While a compact point-and-shoot sensor may have the same number of megapixels as that of a compact DSLR, they aren’t equal – it’s how big those pixels themselves are.

There are cases where a phone megapixel is way bigger than a camera, for example, the Sony Experia Z5 has 23 megapixels and then you get the Nikon D300s that have 12.3-megapixel. Now, this is the point where it comes to the difference between sensor and megapixels. The Sony Experia Z5 has by far the highest megapixel than the Nikon D300s but it does not mean the Sony Experia Z5 will take better photographs than the Nikon D300s. To examine that you must look at the sensor size of both cameras.

The Nikon D300s sensor size a CMOS(complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) sensor, 23.6 x 15.8 mm and the Sony Experia Z5 1/2.3-inch (6.17 x 4.55 mm) multi-aspect BSI CMOS sensor. AS you can see the Nikon D300s sensor is much bigger than the Sony Experia Z5.

ccd-vs-cmos-image-sensor
In digital cameras, you can find image sensors namely charged-coupled device (CCD) or complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS).
These type of image sensors is responsible for converting light into electronic signals.
A few questions to be answered to examine what’s the difference between the two? How do they influence both the quality of the images and the prices of the cameras?

CCD

The first digital cameras used CCD  to turn images from analog light signals into digital pixels. They’re made through a special manufacturing process that allows the conversion to take place in the chip without distortion. CCD creates high-quality sensors that produce excellent images. They require special manufacturing. They are more expensive than their newer CMOS counterparts.

CMOS

CMOS  chips use transistors at each pixel to move the charge through traditional wires. This offers flexibility because each pixel is treated individually. Traditional manufacturing processes are used to make CMOS. It’s the same as creating microchips.  They’re easier to produce. CMOS sensors are cheaper than CCD sensors.

CMOS sensors are cheaper to manufacture. CMOS sensors are the reason that digital cameras have dropped in price.

The Difference

CCD sensors create high-quality images with low noise. CMOS images tend to be higher in noise. CCD sensors are more sensitive to light. CMOS sensors need more light to create a low noise image with proper exposure. CCD has been around for a lot longer in digital cameras, and the technology is more advanced.

At a CMOS sensor, you get a much longer battery life out of a CMOS camera, which means you can take more pictures.

A larger sensor will collect more light than a smaller sensor. More light, generally, means more signal and less relative amounts of digital noise. But be aware that some older large sensor cameras might not have the technology of newer small sensor cameras, and so the difference won’t be as much.

When only looking at the camera (not the lens), the sensor is definitely the biggest player in image quality but not the only one.

Both megapixels and sensor size are important and you need to find the balance to suit your needs.



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