Olympus C-820L vs. Sony Cyber-shot DSC-V3

Comparison

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C-820L image
vs
Cyber-shot DSC-V3 image
Olympus C-820L Sony Cyber-shot DSC-V3
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Megapixels
0.81
7.10
Max. image resolution
1024 x 768
3072 x 2304

Sensor

Sensor type
CCD
CCD
Sensor size
1/3" (~ 4.8 x 3.6 mm)
1/1.8" (~ 7.11 x 5.33 mm)
Sensor resolution
1037 x 780
3072 x 2310
Diagonal
6.00 mm
8.89 mm
Sensor size comparison
Sensor size is generally a good indicator of the quality of the camera. Sensors can vary greatly in size. As a general rule, the bigger the sensor, the better the image quality.

Bigger sensors are more effective because they have more surface area to capture light. An important factor when comparing digital cameras is also camera generation. Generally, newer sensors will outperform the older.

Learn more about sensor sizes »

Actual sensor size

Note: Actual size is set to screen → change »
vs
1 : 2.19
(ratio)
Olympus C-820L Sony Cyber-shot DSC-V3
Surface area:
17.28 mm² vs 37.90 mm²
Difference: 20.62 mm² (119%)
V3 sensor is approx. 2.19x bigger than C-820L sensor.
Note: You are comparing sensors of very different generations. There is a gap of 7 years between Olympus C-820L (1997) and Sony V3 (2004). Seven years is a lot of time in terms of technology, meaning newer sensors are overall much more efficient than the older ones.
Pixel pitch
4.63 µm
2.31 µm
Pixel pitch tells you the distance from the center of one pixel (photosite) to the center of the next. It tells you how close the pixels are to each other.

The bigger the pixel pitch, the further apart they are and the bigger each pixel is. Bigger pixels tend to have better signal to noise ratio and greater dynamic range.
Difference: 2.32 µm (100%)
Pixel pitch of C-820L is approx. 100% higher than pixel pitch of V3.
Pixel area
21.44 µm²
5.34 µm²
Pixel or photosite area affects how much light per pixel can be gathered. The larger it is the more light can be collected by a single pixel.

Larger pixels have the potential to collect more photons, resulting in greater dynamic range, while smaller pixels provide higher resolutions (more detail) for a given sensor size.
Relative pixel sizes:
vs
Pixel area difference: 16.1 µm² (301%)
A pixel on Olympus C-820L sensor is approx. 301% bigger than a pixel on Sony V3.
Pixel density
4.67 MP/cm²
18.67 MP/cm²
Pixel density tells you how many million pixels fit or would fit in one square cm of the sensor.

Higher pixel density means smaller pixels and lower pixel density means larger pixels.
Difference: 14 µm (300%)
Sony V3 has approx. 300% higher pixel density than Olympus C-820L.
To learn about the accuracy of these numbers, click here.



Specs

Olympus C-820L
Sony V3
Crop factor
7.21
4.87
Total megapixels
Effective megapixels
Optical zoom
No
4x
Digital zoom
Yes
Yes
ISO sensitivity
100
Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800
RAW
Manual focus
Normal focus range
70 cm
40 cm
Macro focus range
20 cm
10 cm
Focal length (35mm equiv.)
36 mm
34 - 136 mm
Aperture priority
No
Yes
Max. aperture
f2.8
f2.8 - f4
Max. aperture (35mm equiv.)
f20.2
f13.6 - f19.5
Metering
Centre weighted
Centre weighted, Multi-pattern, Spot
Exposure compensation
±1.5 EV (in 1/2 EV steps)
±2 EV (in 1/3 EV steps)
Shutter priority
No
Yes
Min. shutter speed
1/4 sec
15 sec
Max. shutter speed
1/500 sec
1/2000 sec
Built-in flash
External flash
Viewfinder
Optical
Optical (tunnel)
White balance presets
5
7
Screen size
1.8"
2.5"
Screen resolution
123,000 dots
Video capture
Max. video resolution
Storage types
SmartMedia
CompactFlash type I, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro
USB
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI
Wireless
GPS
Battery
4x AA
InfoLithium (NP-FT1)
Weight
340 g
358 g
Dimensions
128 x 65 x 45 mm
120 x 63 x 72 mm
Year
1997
2004




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Diagonal

Diagonal is calculated by the use of Pythagorean theorem:
Diagonal =  w² + h²
where w = sensor width and h = sensor height

Olympus C-820L diagonal

The diagonal of C-820L sensor is not 1/3 or 0.33" (8.5 mm) as you might expect, but approximately two thirds of that value - 6 mm. If you want to know why, see sensor sizes.

w = 4.80 mm
h = 3.60 mm
Diagonal =  4.80² + 3.60²   = 6.00 mm

Sony V3 diagonal

The diagonal of V3 sensor is not 1/1.8 or 0.56" (14.1 mm) as you might expect, but approximately two thirds of that value - 8.89 mm. If you want to know why, see sensor sizes.

w = 7.11 mm
h = 5.33 mm
Diagonal =  7.11² + 5.33²   = 8.89 mm


Surface area

Surface area is calculated by multiplying the width and the height of a sensor.

C-820L sensor area

Width = 4.80 mm
Height = 3.60 mm

Surface area = 4.80 × 3.60 = 17.28 mm²

V3 sensor area

Width = 7.11 mm
Height = 5.33 mm

Surface area = 7.11 × 5.33 = 37.90 mm²


Pixel pitch

Pixel pitch is the distance from the center of one pixel to the center of the next measured in micrometers (µm). It can be calculated with the following formula:
Pixel pitch =   sensor width in mm  × 1000
sensor resolution width in pixels

C-820L pixel pitch

Sensor width = 4.80 mm
Sensor resolution width = 1037 pixels
Pixel pitch =   4.80  × 1000  = 4.63 µm
1037

V3 pixel pitch

Sensor width = 7.11 mm
Sensor resolution width = 3072 pixels
Pixel pitch =   7.11  × 1000  = 2.31 µm
3072


Pixel area

The area of one pixel can be calculated by simply squaring the pixel pitch:
Pixel area = pixel pitch²

You could also divide sensor surface area with effective megapixels:
Pixel area =   sensor surface area in mm²
effective megapixels

C-820L pixel area

Pixel pitch = 4.63 µm

Pixel area = 4.63² = 21.44 µm²

V3 pixel area

Pixel pitch = 2.31 µm

Pixel area = 2.31² = 5.34 µm²


Pixel density

Pixel density can be calculated with the following formula:
Pixel density =  ( sensor resolution width in pixels )² / 1000000
sensor width in cm

One could also use this formula:
Pixel density =   effective megapixels × 1000000  / 10000
sensor surface area in mm²

C-820L pixel density

Sensor resolution width = 1037 pixels
Sensor width = 0.48 cm

Pixel density = (1037 / 0.48)² / 1000000 = 4.67 MP/cm²

V3 pixel density

Sensor resolution width = 3072 pixels
Sensor width = 0.711 cm

Pixel density = (3072 / 0.711)² / 1000000 = 18.67 MP/cm²


Sensor resolution

Sensor resolution is calculated from sensor size and effective megapixels. It's slightly higher than maximum (not interpolated) image resolution which is usually stated on camera specifications. Sensor resolution is used in pixel pitch, pixel area, and pixel density formula. For sake of simplicity, we're going to calculate it in 3 stages.

1. First we need to find the ratio between horizontal and vertical length by dividing the former with the latter (aspect ratio). It's usually 1.33 (4:3) or 1.5 (3:2), but not always.

2. With the ratio (r) known we can calculate the X from the formula below, where X is a vertical number of pixels:
(X × r) × X = effective megapixels × 1000000    →   
X =  effective megapixels × 1000000
r
3. To get sensor resolution we then multiply X with the corresponding ratio:

Resolution horizontal: X × r
Resolution vertical: X

C-820L sensor resolution

Sensor width = 4.80 mm
Sensor height = 3.60 mm
Effective megapixels = 0.81
r = 4.80/3.60 = 1.33
X =  0.81 × 1000000  = 780
1.33
Resolution horizontal: X × r = 780 × 1.33 = 1037
Resolution vertical: X = 780

Sensor resolution = 1037 x 780

V3 sensor resolution

Sensor width = 7.11 mm
Sensor height = 5.33 mm
Effective megapixels = 7.10
r = 7.11/5.33 = 1.33
X =  7.10 × 1000000  = 2310
1.33
Resolution horizontal: X × r = 2310 × 1.33 = 3072
Resolution vertical: X = 2310

Sensor resolution = 3072 x 2310


Crop factor

Crop factor or focal length multiplier is calculated by dividing the diagonal of 35 mm film (43.27 mm) with the diagonal of the sensor.
Crop factor =   43.27 mm
sensor diagonal in mm


C-820L crop factor

Sensor diagonal in mm = 6.00 mm
Crop factor =   43.27  = 7.21
6.00

V3 crop factor

Sensor diagonal in mm = 8.89 mm
Crop factor =   43.27  = 4.87
8.89

35 mm equivalent aperture

Equivalent aperture (in 135 film terms) is calculated by multiplying lens aperture with crop factor (a.k.a. focal length multiplier).

C-820L equivalent aperture

Crop factor = 7.21
Aperture = f2.8

35-mm equivalent aperture = (f2.8) × 7.21 = f20.2

V3 equivalent aperture

Crop factor = 4.87
Aperture = f2.8 - f4

35-mm equivalent aperture = (f2.8 - f4) × 4.87 = f13.6 - f19.5

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