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Many scanners and some digital cameras have two resolution figures quoted in their spec sheets - optical and interpolated. Optical is the figure you should trust as it's a true pixel capture, unlike interpolated that uses the optical figures to calculate and add new pixels to increase resolution.
Cameras with figures in this column have a digital zoom that increases the magnification of the optical lens by the quoted figure. To do this it uses part of the CCD so the resolution is reduced to allow for the increase magnification. If you dont intend making big enlargements this is useful other wise stick to the optical zoom. Most cameras have the option to turn the digital zoom on or off.
Two black parallel lines and the inner white space on an optical test chart pattern that are used to measure lens resolution.