There are a lot of terms describing image quality that are less than well defined. Unfortunately it's not always clear what is meant with the wording. For instance you use the term "microcontrast". I haved been told that it means MTF at high frequency.
Unfortunately, it is not always feasible for ordinary users to determine stuff such as MTF, "microcontrast", etc. Special test charts, methodology and software have to be used. And, still what about real images that you have acquired? I.e., images of landscapes, cats, oranges, etc., and not some test charts in controlled setting. To complicate matters further, arguing what is lens sharpness, pixel pitch, FOV, and what not. At the end of the day it is the image
we are after and it will be useful to have notions of image quality purely based upon on pixel data and detached from sensor pitch, lens, aperture, image display size, etc.
Realizing the vagueness and difficulty associated with this paradigm I developed a measure of image detail, JIDM, for which a user has to just run it through Photoshop (or ImageJ) and it gives you a number in [0-1] range, where higher means more detail. As an example see below:
The good thing is that one can select an area of an image using Photoshop marquee tool and it will only do the detail measure analysis in that area. You can download it freely from my website. At this stage it is only Photoshop CS3, Mac OS 10.6. It is not perfect, and there is room for improvement, but it helps me in some of my analyses, and may be you find it useful, or have suggestions for improvements.
And, BTW, while you are there, you might like to get hold of Mac versions of FFT/IFFT
plugins that are quite helpful in certain situations.