As I keep repeating, I want to see what the difference really looks like in the real world.
Prints or Plasma/LCD display?
At present, I'm converting a good few of my images to sRGB and 1920x1080 pixels for display on my new 50" Plasma TV. Where I can crop to the 16:9 aspect ratio without spoiling the composition, I do so.
It so happens I have a mounted print hanging on the wall immediately above the plasma screen, to one side. The scene is a wide-angle shot of a temple ruin at Angkor Wat taken with my 5D and printed on my Epson 7600 at 23" x35", no cropping, the full 12.7mp interpolated.
Out of curiosity, I took the same image file that I'd printed at 23"x35", converted it to sRGB and downsampled it to 1080 pixels in height, which resulted in a 5mb file (not 5mp but 5MB which is less than 2mp).
From a 'normal' (or shall we say 'usual') viewing distance of 10 or 12ft, the 5MB file on the Plasma screen looks just as detailed as the 260MB file (after interpolation) that was printed.
I'm a bit flabbergasted. Is there something wrong with my eyesight? I need glasses for close reading, but long distance is no problem. However, medium distances can be a slight problem. I can drive a car at night with no problem, without glasses, but for best clarity on the computer monitor I need galsses with a lower magnification than my normal reading glasses. For best clarity at medium distances, I use the very first spectacles I was prescribed for reading purposes, with a magnification of 1x.
I have no reason to think that this effect I'm seeing is a result of poor eyesight, but it might be. Maybe I'm in a state of delusion.
The other impression one clearly gets, making this comparison between the print of the 260MB file and the 5MB plasma display of the same file, is that the vibrancy and luminosity of the image on the plasma screen completley trounces the relatively dull and flat print. I'm beginning to think that the only purpose of my Epson 7600 printer is to produce very wide panoramas of stitched images that my plasma display cannot accommodate without very severe reduction in resolution and size.
However, I don't want to appear to be exaggerating. The appearance of the print changes with lighting. Sometimes in the evening, with a certain type of artificail lighting, the qualities change and subtleties of tonality are quite enchanting on the print. The plasma display is 'full on', as it were, day or night.