Resolving Fine Lines

For our resolution test, we reset both cameras to their default settings and then used the highest resolution and quality setting. The cameras were set to +1.3 E.V. For more information, refer to our Testing Procedures page. Below are 200% crops of the test. Click on a crop to see the full chart.

Z2
Z2
Click to enlarge.
Z3
Z3
Click to enlarge.

The clear winner here is the Z3. The Z2 resolution chart is characterized by a soft/fuzzy appearance. The camera is able to retain its vertical line resolution out to the 11 mark and moves to extinction by 13. The Z3, on the other hand, has higher contrast and sharpness. It is able to produce distinct lines out to the 12 and move to extinction a little after 14.

Z2
Z2
Click to enlarge.
Z3
Z3
Click to enlarge.

The horizontal resolution is identical to the vertical resolution for both cameras. Again, the Z3 is clear out to 12 while the Z2 makes it to the 11 mark before extinction. We were generally impressed with the resolution performance of both of these cameras. They performed above-average for 4 megapixel cameras.

The Timing Tests Color Reproduction
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  • PaulS - Tuesday, September 21, 2004 - link

    Stephen, thanks for the information (and the review!). I'm looking at using either the Z2 or the Z3 for astrophotography where I would need detail derived from dark areas. I like the antishake and separate viewfinder that the Z3 offers, but I think from your comments the picture quality of the Z2 would be better.

    Thanks again!
    Reply
  • stephencaston - Friday, September 17, 2004 - link

    There are certainly ways to deal with some of the Z3's shortcomings by doing post-work. However, There isn't a way to deal with the loss of detail in shadow areas.

    The real question is what issues will a new firmware address? It will be interesting to see what Konica Minolta will do.
    Reply
  • PaulS - Friday, September 17, 2004 - link

    Until new firmware is released, is it possible to deal with Z3's flaws (e.g. under-exposure, darker images, colour reproduction) using standard image processing software? Reply
  • stephencaston - Thursday, September 16, 2004 - link

    Kelh,

    Both cameras have an accessory shoe that fits Konica Minolta flash units: 2500(D), 3600HS(D), and 5600HS(D). However, these flash units are sold separately. I hope this answers your comment ;-)
    Reply
  • Kelh - Thursday, September 16, 2004 - link

    One of the things I never find in these reviews is wether the cameras include a flash stand. Sometimes the flashes that come with digicams are not good enough and night pictures look dark.

    Reply
  • joyce - Wednesday, September 15, 2004 - link

    Is it worth the price difference?
    Here in The Netherlands the difference is about €140,=.

    I think it is very much
    Reply
  • microsaftcom - Monday, September 06, 2004 - link

    what the reviewers call jpeg compression artefacts may be just normal noise... I don't know...
    Depends on the reviewers...

    All cameras have some sort of horizontal lines...
    I don't see when it will be a problem.

    I think 3 mb for 4 Mpixel pictures show that the compression isn't very effective.

    Reply
  • microsaftcom - Monday, September 06, 2004 - link

    It seems that Z3's flaws can be dealt with with firmware updates.

    Perhapos that is why the current new firmware 1.01e is not official yet, even though it solved many problems.

    In my mind these cams are uncomparable as one has image stabilisation and thoe other hasn't.
    It has to be compared with the panasonic or the canon.
    /F
    Reply
  • Chaotic42 - Monday, September 06, 2004 - link

    I had a Z2 for a brief period of time (I had to return it when my PSU killed my motherboard) and it was an awesome camera.

    The Z3 looks even better. I would recommend that anyone looking for a high-zoom camera check these out.
    Reply

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