Image Quality More Than Simply Megapixels

For a long time, consumers viewed the megapixels (MP) on a camera as the defining characteristic and the honest answer this still happens today. However, for anyone working in product photography, such as a packshot photographer we know there is far more to the quality of an image than how many megapixels a camera has.

We’ve put together some of the most important factors that affect the quality of an image, along with a brief description of why they should be considered alongside the megapixels on a camera.

The type of file

The type of file you shoot in has a significant impact on the image quality, perhaps more so than anything else. The choice between JPEG and RAW comes with a range of pros and cons but when it comes to image quality, you simply can’t beat RAW file types.

This type of file captures more information and this means when you go to editing, you will have more options available to you without harming the quality of the final image. This does mean storing larger files but anyone working in product photography will know this potential challenge is far outweighed by the benefits.

The sensor

When we talk about the sensor, we mean the type and size of it. Within a sensor, there are small cavities that detect light and these are called photosites. The higher the quantity of these photosites, the higher the resolution. If you go for a small sensor that may state it is high-resolution, this will actually capture less light and by extension offer a reduced level of quality.

The lens

Like any piece of equipment, a packshot photographer will need to buy, each brand and model will offer a differing degree of quality. This is no different when it comes to lenses and so it is important to make the right decision when buying a lens.

The better quality lenses will offer features that improve the image quality, particularly when it comes to preventing issues like reflection. If light reflects on a product you’re shooting, then it can cause a fuzzy effect. The best lenses out there come with a coating that minimises reflections and as a result, improves the image quality.

The user

Yes, it isn’t a piece of equipment but the truth is that the user of the camera has a great deal of say in the quality of the final image. Product photography is all about delivering those stunning images that sell a product, promote a brand and connect with the target audience. This will only be achieved if the packshot photographer in question knows how to utilise their equipment.

Learning to focus correctly and ensure you have the correct level of exposure can really transform your images and through practice and experience, you can improve your image quality far more than simply upgrading to a few extra megapixels.


As you can see, there are plenty of factors that affect image quality and in most cases far more than the number of megapixels on a camera. That isn’t to say the megapixel level isn’t important and it is a good idea to research the best cameras on the market for your professional needs. At the same time, start to explore the rest of your equipment and decide whether you need to upgrade or replace existing items to improve your image quality even further.