In spite of the fact that Niko's going to make fun of me for saying it, I'm thinking I could use more megapixels. For so long I've been saying to myself and others that 12 is plenty, and in most situations I'll stand by that statement. But before you think I'm just trolling all of you out there with your 12 megapixel cameras, remember that I'm one of you and I know it's definitely not a life or death thing so hear me out.
I've been playing around with Lightroom 3 this week and here is what's making me think it would be useful:
-That impressive noise reduction algorithm. It's really almost like magic to me. Those of you out there with noise ninja have probably known what I'm talking about for a long time—I could never justify buying it. They must do some kind of fancy routine that looks for correlation between neighboring pixels to know what detail to hold and what fake 'detail' (caused by the noise) to get rid of—if one pixel records a bright value but none of the neighboring pixels do, it's thrown away because it's likely noise. So why does this make me want more pixels? This is oversimplified, but if you have something you want to image that covers only one photosite (maybe sand on a beach from a distance), the contrast made by that thing would be thrown away because it looks like digital noise even though it's real. With more pixels, you can resolve smaller things by getting signal from it on more photosites, so the contrast would survive the correlation algorithm.
-Lens corrections. When you adjust for geometric lens distortions, you have to stretch the image in some areas, and if you have a finer grid to begin with it means less interpolation later.
So, do you want more megapixels? I didn't until this week.