By now, you must have heard that Canon has announced their new full frame camera, the 1Dx. It merges both the 1D and the 1Ds series, 12 frames per second, 18 megapixels and full videos.
Notice that Canon has dropped the pixel count from 21 megapixels to 18 megapixels. Is this a case of pay more and get less? People will say that it’s to get a higher ISO. No it’s not. Higher ISO is not a function of the size of the pixels (large photosites helps) but far more importantly than the sensor is the speed of the CPU, to process and reduce the noise. The faster the CPU, the more strategies can be tried to reduce the noise and the computing power required goes up exponentially. The Canon 1Dx has 3 CPUs, including 2 Digic 5, the extra “Speedy Gonzales” CPUs.
In 2010, Canon demoed a 120 Megapixels APS-H sensor. Canon designs and manufactures their own sensors. Canon has the technology to make a 40 megapixels camera. So why not?
I have mentioned it quite a few times, the problem with the high resolutions are not the sensors, but the lenses. Most Canon lenses cannot resolve 30 megapixels. Even the new L lenses, like the new 70-200L f/2.8, struggle to resolve 30 megapixels, and the vast majority of the Canon L lenses cannot.
Nikon is on a slightly better situation, their trifecta, the 14-24, the 24-70 and the 70-200 can resolve 30 megapixels, but the rest…
The company that is in the best position for the megapixels race is Sony. Since they are a “late comer” to the game, all of their Zeiss lenses resolve 30 megapixels.
People at Canon have finally explained why their videos couldn’t be longer than 30 minutes per video capture (they now have software work around.) It’s an EU tax that would raise the price of their cameras by 30%!