Considering Resolution Large Medium or Small

To decide upon a Quality setting, the first decision you need to make is how many pixels you want your image to contain. Pixels are the little square tiles from which all digital images are made; the word pixel is short for picture element. You can see some pixels close up in the right image in Figure 3-4, which shows a greatly magnified view of the eye area of the left image.

The number of pixels in an image is referred to as resolution. Your Canon offers you three resolution levels, which are assigned the generic labels Large, Medium, and Small and are represented on the list of Quality settings by the initials L, M, and S. Table 3-1 shows you the pixel count that results from each option. (If you select Raw as your Quality setting, images are always captured at the Large resolution value.)

Table 3-1 The Resolution Side of the Quality Settings

Symbol Setting Pixel Count

Table 3-1 The Resolution Side of the Quality Settings

Symbol Setting Pixel Count



3888 x 2592 (10 MP)



2816 x 1880 (5.3 MP)

In the table, the first pair of numbers shown for each setting represents the ¿yXtK^iX image pixel dimensions — that is, the number of horizontal pixels and the number of vertical pixels. The values in parentheses indicate the total resolution, which you get by multiplying the horizontal and vertical pixel values. This number is usually stated in megapixels, abbreviated MP for short. One megapixel equals 1 million pixels. (I rounded off the megapixel values in the table.)

To figure out how many pixels are enough, you need to understand how resolution affects print quality, display size, and file size. The next sections explain these issues, as well as a few other resolution factoids.

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  • connie
    How to set the resolution to smallest on Canon Digital Rebel EOS XT?
    9 years ago

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