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film grain vs. "pixels"

 
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SYNCHROJAMES



Joined: 12 Jun 2007
Posts: 34
Location: SAN DIEGO CA

PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 3:13 am    Post subject: film grain vs. "pixels" Reply with quote

Does anyone out there have any data comparing digital pixels to grains of silver on film? I'm sure everyone has heard the digital is better song, and I would like to think there are more grains of silver than pixels per sq. cm. I shoot 120 TRI-X in 6x7.

James
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Les



Joined: 09 May 2001
Posts: 2682
Location: Detroit, MI

PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well the problem is there's no definitive size for a pixel. My canon 10D has a 6 megapixel chip that is much larger than my daughter's (newer) P&S digicam that's 8 or 9 Mpxls.

then there's the mechanics of comparing the images. Are you scanning the film? If so there's a rat's nest of variables of the type of scanner and finished file size.

If you want to compare an analog print (enlarger) to a digital print(from a digital camera), then there's the rat's nest of variables with type of lens in the enlarger, registration of the enlarger, chemicals and dev time and temp of the print.

Plus the variables is the digital print: inkjet, vs dyesub vs fuji frontier vs Lamda vs type of software in the printer and the computer before the printer.

You can't really compare a transparency to digital because digital doesn't have a similar media.
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glennfromwy



Joined: 29 Nov 2001
Posts: 903
Location: S.W. Wyoming

PostPosted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You also have to take into consideration the fact that the grain you see in developed film is not individual grains, but clumps of grains. The actual grains themselves are microscopic in size and would be impossible to see, much less count. Not a valid comparison, by any stretch of the imagination.
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Glenn

"Wyoming - Where everybody is somebody else's weirdo"
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bruiser



Joined: 15 Oct 2006
Posts: 259
Location: Northern NSW Australia

PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 7:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did read a while back on some forum that to resolve detail similar to 35mm Fuji Velvia you would need some 25 megs of full frame (36mm sensor) digital goodness.

How this was worked out in terms of lens resolution (the weakest link) I have no idea. As Les and Glenn have said too many variables and too many cans of worms to form a definitive answer.

At work we use Nikon D3 DSLRs and I would say their quality approaches most films, so I can only imagine that a D3X (I've never used one) at 24.3 megs would be approaching 35mm transparency quality.

120 size??? Talking MEGABUCKS for anything digital approaching Tri-X!

Cheers,
Bruce
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mopar_guy



Joined: 07 Aug 2008
Posts: 126
Location: Washington, the State

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2009 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Digital and film will always be different. I find it funny that you can now get a plug-in for photoshop that will let a digital image mimic the look of various films. Image quality doesn't happen by accident. To get good looking images with a digital camera you have to practice shooting. To make a good photo with film you have to practice. Just go shoot with your camera, whatever it happens to be and you will eventually get better results.

Dave
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