This paper presents some results from an MRI study of vowels , in which classical distance-to-area equations  were evaluated for implementation in sagittal view articulatory modelling. It was shown that an articulatorily more detailed application of the conversion rules improved the accuracy of the predicted areas, but that this increased realism failed to improve acoustic performance, if midline derivation and vocal tract termination points were kept the same. It was also shown that a more general application of the conversion rules produced significant area errors, but did not impair acoustic performance considerably. A small follow-up investigation on the general approach is presented, which confirms modest acoustic effects of less area detail. This is interpreted as the acoustic impact of mid-sagittal information being greater than that of detail in area size.