Jackfruit TreeDon’t go for megapixels I tell everyone and even had written about it in a tech column that I used to pen for a youth magazine. But given all the guru gyaan and the advertising blitzkrieg that digicam companies have embarked upon, very few people had taken my advice seriously.

About a year later I find a voice of support, from New York Times columnist David Pogue.

But one myth is so deeply ingrained, millions of people waste money on it every year. I’m referring, of course, to the Megapixel Myth.

It goes like this: “The more megapixels a camera has, the better the pictures.”

It’s a big fat lie. The camera companies and camera stores all know it, but they continue to exploit our misunderstanding. Advertisements declare a camera’s megapixel rating as though it’s a letter grade, implying that a 7-megapixel model is necessarily better than a 5-megapixel model.

I own a 4.1 megapixel camera, but I hardly shoot any photos using the highest resolution, most of my photos are shot at 1 megapixel, and the results are as good. In fact a few of my best photographs have been shot at VGA resolution (640X480) and the prints are as clear as the rest. Unless I need a humongous print of my pics (which is a 1 in 100,000 possibility), what would I do with a 10 megapixel camera?

Most of us hardly get prints of our pics and when we do we get at most a postcard-sized print. That’s many thousands of rupees of worthless megapixels down the drain. I would suggest that you put your money where it matters – the lens. And no digital zoom please. That’s another hoax.

[The accompanying pic was shot at VGA resolution (640X480)]