Large formad drawback?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by chibitul, Nov 17, 2003.

  1. chibitul

    chibitul Guest

    Hi,

    I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium) size.

    From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF, while
    full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...

    so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    wondering... thanks!
    chibitul, Nov 17, 2003
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. "chibitul" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Hi,
    >
    > I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    > newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium) size.
    >
    > From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    > length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    > Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF, while
    > full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    > large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...
    >
    > so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    > aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    > thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    > medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    > 35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    > wondering... thanks!


    I don't do much sports photography, but I have found that my wide angle lens
    (I have a 20mm f3.5) has a nice wide depth of field, especially if I stop it
    down a little bit. (f 6.3 or f 8.0) When I do this, I can set the focus on
    20 or 30 feet in the morning, and not have to focus the lens again all
    day! - Everything is sharp from a few feet in front of the camera to
    infinity....I think this is how those cheap fixed focus point & shoots
    work.........
    William Graham, Nov 17, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. chibitul

    stacey Guest

    chibitul wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    > newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium) size.
    >
    > From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    > length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    > Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF, while
    > full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    > large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...


    Yes and some people like shallow DOF ;-)

    You also have to remember the negatives are enlarged less with the larger
    formats so say an 8X10 print made from a 35mm neg, the neg needs to be MUCH
    sharper (i.e. smaller coc) than a contact print from an 8X10 negative would
    need to have the same apparent DOF at normal viewing distances i.e. to have
    the same coc on the final print. So unless you scale up the final image
    size in relation to the negative size, the acceptable coc becomes less as
    the negative gets larger so the loss of DOF isn't as great as it first
    appears but it is there.

    >
    > so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    > aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    > thus a longer shutter speed.


    Again some shots look better with shallow DOF so the "huge DOF" with
    digicams is one thing I don't like about them.. You can almost always stop
    down a larger format lens to gain DOF but with the small sensor camera's
    there is no way to get shallow DOF.

    > So am I right when I imagine that most
    > medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    > 35mm???


    Yes that is correct.

    >Does anyone use medium format for sports photography?


    Not too many, mostly because of the size of the equipment and how large tele
    lenses the size needed for sports (a 600 F4 pentax which equals a 300mm in
    35mm is a 14 lb lens!)


    --

    Stacey
    stacey, Nov 17, 2003
    #3
  4. chibitul

    Jeff Guest

    chibitul <> wrote in news:ch1b1tul-
    :

    > Hi,
    >
    > I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    > newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium)

    size.
    >
    > From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    > length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    > Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF,

    while
    > full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    > large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...


    P&S cameras usually have smaller apertures, giving more DOF.

    >
    > so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    > aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    > thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    > medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    > 35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    > wondering... thanks!


    One factor governing DOF is "circle of least confusion" which increases
    as objects are closer or farther from the actual focus point. A larger
    format can have a larger circle and still be considered in focus.
    Hence, given the same focal length and f-stop, a large format will have
    _more_ DOF than a 35mm.
    A 150mm lens at f8 focused at 30 feet will have 69.7 inches of depth on
    a 35mm or 448.6 inches on 4x5. There is a DOF calculator here:
    http://www.outsight.com/hyperfocal.html
    Jeff, Nov 17, 2003
    #4
  5. chibitul wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    > newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium) size.
    >
    > From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    > length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    > Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF, while
    > full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    > large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...
    >
    > so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    > aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    > thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    > medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    > 35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    > wondering... thanks!


    You are basically correct. But it is a bit more complicated. The
    total range of usable f-stops is about the same for all formats. You
    start at the low end with smaller apertures, but you are less limited by
    diffraction at the higher end with very small apertures. This assumes
    you are talking about making the same size final print to be viewed in
    the same way. So the whole range is shifted towards smaller apertures,
    but the size of the usable range remains about the same. The result of
    this is not that you get less depth of field but that you have to use
    slower shutter speeds for the same depth of field.

    One the other hand, there are some other factors involved. Few 35 mm
    images can be enlarged to 20 x 25 or beyond, but such prints are fairly
    common from 4 x 5 images.
    Leonard Evens, Nov 17, 2003
    #5
  6. Jeff wrote:
    > chibitul <> wrote in news:ch1b1tul-
    > :
    >
    >
    >>Hi,
    >>
    >>I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    >>newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium)

    >
    > size.
    >
    >>From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    >>length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    >>Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF,

    >
    > while
    >
    >>full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    >>large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...

    >
    >
    > P&S cameras usually have smaller apertures, giving more DOF.
    >
    >
    >>so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    >>aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    >>thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    >>medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    >>35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    >>wondering... thanks!

    >
    >
    > One factor governing DOF is "circle of least confusion" which increases
    > as objects are closer or farther from the actual focus point. A larger
    > format can have a larger circle and still be considered in focus.
    > Hence, given the same focal length and f-stop, a large format will have
    > _more_ DOF than a 35mm.
    > A 150mm lens at f8 focused at 30 feet will have 69.7 inches of depth on
    > a 35mm or 448.6 inches on 4x5. There is a DOF calculator here:
    > http://www.outsight.com/hyperfocal.html


    What you say is correct, but it ignores the fact that the same focal
    length lens will have a different angle of view. A 150 mm lens is a
    normal lens for 4 x 5 but quite long for 35 mm.

    >
    >
    >
    Leonard Evens, Nov 17, 2003
    #6
  7. DOF is controlled primarily by 2 things --
    focal length and aperture opening size --
    and secondarily, less significantly by
    optical design.

    With that, a normal lens on 8x10 (300mm) @ f5.6
    will have less dof than a 50mm on your 135 camera @ f5.6.

    But that's not a disadvantage.
    It's a major why people buy "fast" lenses -- to get more control of DOF!
    It's what makes classic portraits look so special, with just the eyes in focus.
    Can't do that with 35mm unless you go acquire a 1.2 or 1.0 lens.
    Even then you don't have movements to manipulate things.

    now a little rant, just for fun ...

    With 4x5 hand-held, many used flash to compensate.
    But 8x10 & larger is generally either long exposure or very good, bright lights.
    There have been 5x7 press cameras but never an 8x10 hand-held that I'm
    familiar with. (Anyone willing to try?)

    Most good 35mm lenses are as sharp or sharper than 4x5 or 8x10 lenses,
    but the cost is significant. Having to deal with coma, barrel, and
    pincussion distortions, spending a fortune on lenses just to get sharp
    snapshots from the best lenses.

    I've talked about the Pentax Limited series and how excellent they are
    but also how expensive. Yet for the price of one of those lenses you can
    get a medium or large format solution that will provide even sharper pictures.
    Though not as convenient as 135 systems, good medium or large format will
    get the job done better and easier than one might expect. It's why I use
    135 for convenience, as it is intended, but medium and large when I want a
    really nice picture for the wall.

    One would do well to get a Yashica Mat 124G ($100 to $200) or
    Rolleiflex 2.8C, D, or E ($300 - $600) and
    get really nice pics when they're wanted.

    Keep 135 costs under control. Get a nice system and enjoy it.
    You can spend a lot of money to get a neg the size of a postage stamp.
    You can spend less and get an equivalently sharp larger neg.
    Take your pic.

    Collin


    chibitul <> wrote in message news:<>...
    > Hi,
    >
    > I crossposted this question to r.p.digital and the 3 major film
    > newsgroups since it's related to Depth Of Field vs. sensor (medium) size.
    >
    > From what I understand, the larger the medium, the longer the focal
    > length (for a given angle of view) and thus the shallower the Depth of
    > Field. Clearly some P&S digicams with small sensors have huge DOF, while
    > full frame 35 mm have much shallow DOF. I never worked with medium or
    > large format cameras, but I imagine the DOF is even smaller there...
    >
    > so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    > aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    > thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    > medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    > 35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    > wondering... thanks!
    Collin Brendemuehl, Nov 17, 2003
    #7
  8. In article <>,
    (Collin Brendemuehl) wrote:


    > now a little rant, just for fun ...
    > With 4x5 hand-held, many used flash to compensate.
    > But 8x10 & larger is generally either long exposure or very good, bright lights.
    > There have been 5x7 press cameras but never an 8x10 hand-held that I'm
    > familiar with. (Anyone willing to try?)


    Been done; Look for the "Hobo Camera".

    --


    website:
    http://members.bellatlantic.net/~gblank
    Gregory W. Blank, Nov 17, 2003
    #8
  9. In article <>, Collin
    Brendemuehl <> writes
    >DOF is controlled primarily by 2 things --
    >focal length and aperture opening size --
    >and secondarily, less significantly by
    >optical design.
    >

    It depends on focal length, aperture and object distance (plus, if you
    are going to be picky, final image size).

    How do you believe the "optical design" affects DOF? Presumably you mean
    the arrangement of lenses chosen as the basis for the computation
    (Tessar, Planar, Gauss etc.). I have never seen any suggestion that it
    does depend on this (and don't see how it could) but if you know
    something to prove it does, this would be interesting.
    --
    David Littlewood
    David Littlewood, Nov 17, 2003
    #9
  10. On 11/17/2003 6:58 AM Gregory W. Blank spake thus:

    > In article <>,
    > (Collin Brendemuehl) wrote:
    >
    >> now a little rant, just for fun ...
    >> With 4x5 hand-held, many used flash to compensate.
    >> But 8x10 & larger is generally either long exposure or very good, bright lights.
    >> There have been 5x7 press cameras but never an 8x10 hand-held that I'm
    >> familiar with. (Anyone willing to try?)

    >
    > Been done; Look for the "Hobo Camera".


    Like here: http://www.bostick-sullivan.com/Hobo/welcome.htm

    Kewl! A handheld 8x10 with built-in vignetting, no focusing (truly "point &
    shoot"), that you can literally stand on, and that gives a super-wide view!


    --
    Any fool can tell the truth, but it requires a man of some sense
    to know how to tell a lie well.

    - Samuel Butler
    David Nebenzahl, Nov 17, 2003
    #10
  11. "David Littlewood" <>
    wrote in message news:Czj2kuB4hPu$...
    > In article <>, Collin
    > Brendemuehl <> writes


    > >DOF is controlled primarily by 2 things --
    > >focal length and aperture opening size --
    > >and secondarily, less significantly by
    > >optical design.


    > It depends on focal length, aperture and object distance (plus, if you
    > are going to be picky, final image size).
    >
    > How do you believe the "optical design" affects DOF? Presumably you mean
    > the arrangement of lenses chosen as the basis for the computation
    > (Tessar, Planar, Gauss etc.). I have never seen any suggestion that it
    > does depend on this (and don't see how it could) but if you know
    > something to prove it does, this would be interesting.
    > --
    > David Littlewood


    I think the poster didn't mean it this way, but DOF can be affected
    by lens resolution, with the sharper lens having slightly less DOF,
    everything else being equal (though the resolution difference would
    need to be very considerable). BTW, I did not see in the thread
    above any mention of the ability of most 4x5 cameras to have the
    plane of focus shifted away from being parallel with the film - and
    this can appear to increase DOF for a given aperture in some
    situations...
    --
    David Ruether

    http://www.ferrario.com/ruether
    David Ruether, Nov 17, 2003
    #11
  12. "David Ruether" <> wrote

    > DOF can be affected
    > by lens resolution, with the sharper lens having slightly less DOF


    With pinhole photography having infinite depth of field and the
    simplest lens of all.

    --
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Cleveland, Ohio
    Consulting Engineer: Electronics; Informatics; Photonics.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Nov 17, 2003
    #12
  13. In article <d5cub.5357$>,
    Nicholas O. Lindan <> writes
    >"David Ruether" <> wrote
    >
    >> DOF can be affected
    >> by lens resolution, with the sharper lens having slightly less DOF

    >
    >With pinhole photography having infinite depth of field and the
    >simplest lens of all.
    >

    Or a zero DoF, depending on what size circle of confusion you define as
    "acceptable".
    --
    David Littlewood
    David Littlewood, Nov 17, 2003
    #13
  14. In article <Gm5ub.69647$>, Gregory W.
    Blank <> wrote:

    > In article <>,
    > (Collin Brendemuehl) wrote:
    >
    >
    > > now a little rant, just for fun ...
    > > With 4x5 hand-held, many used flash to compensate.
    > > But 8x10 & larger is generally either long exposure or very good, bright
    > > lights.
    > > There have been 5x7 press cameras but never an 8x10 hand-held that I'm
    > > familiar with. (Anyone willing to try?)

    >
    > Been done; Look for the "Hobo Camera".


    On Stephen gandy's site, he says that Linhof made a few 8x10 Technika
    IVs. About 16 of them. Boy, howdy!

    Jeff
    Le Grande Raoul, Nov 18, 2003
    #14
  15. Depth of field: From Zero to Infinite

    "David Littlewood" <> wrote
    > Nicholas O. Lindan <> writes
    > >"David Ruether" <> wrote
    > >
    > > > DOF can be affected
    > > > by lens resolution, with the sharper lens having slightly less DOF

    > >
    > >With pinhole photography having infinite depth of field and the
    > >simplest lens of all.

    >
    > Or a zero DoF, depending on what size circle of confusion you define as
    > "acceptable


    A pinhole is uniformly, er, sharp at all distances. So depth of
    field is infinite.

    A lens only produces its smallest CoC at only one distance with things
    getting worse at any other distance. If one takes the optimum CoC as the
    limit of acceptability then the depth of field collapses to zero.

    At the extreme, zero depth of field is only sharp at one distance
    with no image production at any other distance. The picture would
    be of an outline of objects that cut the forward focal plane (correct
    term escapes me).

    Confocal systems achieve infinite depth of field by using a
    zero depth of field technique and build up the image as the
    object is moved through the imaging plane. The major use
    for this technique is microscopy of living cells and
    ophthalmic retinal photography.
    http://www.microscopyu.com/tutorials/java/virtual/confocal/index.html

    There is someone who has taken marvelous insect photographs with
    a confocal setup.

    As an example of a do-it yourself confocal setup

    * Make a vertical slit in a 35mm slide mount with two razor blades

    * Project the slit-slide in a dark room

    * Mount a camera on a tripod at right angles to the projector
    and focus the camera on the light plane

    * Open the shutter and move the object through the plane
    of light. You will get a side-lit image -- extra projectors
    (or a spinning light source) are needed for uniform
    illumination.

    Bingo - the whole object is imaged in focus and depth of
    field is independent of lens aperture.

    --
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Cleveland, Ohio
    Consulting Engineer: Electronics; Informatics; Photonics.
    ".
    > --
    > David Littlewood
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Nov 18, 2003
    #15
  16. In article <171120031606485676%>,
    Le Grande Raoul <> wrote:

    > In article <Gm5ub.69647$>, Gregory W.
    > Blank <> wrote:
    > > Been done; Look for the "Hobo Camera".

    >
    > On Stephen gandy's site, he says that Linhof made a few 8x10 Technika
    > IVs. About 16 of them. Boy, howdy!
    > Jeff


    How would you like to shlep one of those
    around to do all the pics at a wedding?

    --


    website:
    http://members.bellatlantic.net/~gblank
    Gregory W. Blank, Nov 18, 2003
    #16
  17. Re: Depth of field: From Zero to Infinite

    A better explanation of confocal microscopy:

    http://www.solarius-inc.com/html/confocal.html

    Note that confocal microscopy is used for imaging transparent
    (and murky) 3D objects such as living cells -- a bit
    different from the usual photographic subject for most of
    us.

    --
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Cleveland, Ohio
    Consulting Engineer: Electronics; Informatics; Photonics.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Nov 18, 2003
    #17
  18. Re: Depth of field: From Zero to Infinite

    And, for the integrally minded:

    http://www.thales-optem.com/pdf/ViewMedia.pdf

    It does show a confocal comparison for a solid object, a pollen
    grain.

    --
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Cleveland, Ohio
    Consulting Engineer: Electronics; Informatics; Photonics.
    Nicholas O. Lindan, Nov 18, 2003
    #18
  19. chibitul wrote:

    >Hi,
    ><snip>
    >so, you get great detail, sharpness, but you *have to* use a smaller
    >aperture when you take the photo, otherwise the DOF will be so small;
    >thus a longer shutter speed. So am I right when I imagine that most
    >medium/large photos are taken at longer shutter speeds compared to
    >35mm??? does anyone use medium format for sports photography? just
    >wondering... thanks!
    >


    Well, I have used a 4x5 monorail view camera for sports photography
    (lawn bowling) and had no problems. I just set up the tripod, preset
    the aperture and shutter so that I could stop action adequately, put the
    film carrier in, cocked the shutter and pressed the remote release when
    I was ready. Of course, in the old days, guys like Weegee used a press
    camera for everything and managed to get pictures at least as good as -
    if not far better than - pictures now taken with 35 mm cameras.


    Francis A. Miniter
    Francis A. Miniter, Nov 18, 2003
    #19
  20. In article <_Ldub.71733$>, Gregory W.
    Blank <> wrote:

    > In article <171120031606485676%>,
    > Le Grande Raoul <> wrote:
    >
    > > In article <Gm5ub.69647$>, Gregory W.
    > > Blank <> wrote:
    > > > Been done; Look for the "Hobo Camera".

    > >
    > > On Stephen gandy's site, he says that Linhof made a few 8x10 Technika
    > > IVs. About 16 of them. Boy, howdy!
    > > Jeff

    >
    > How would you like to shlep one of those
    > around to do all the pics at a wedding?


    Lessee... two 18 year old, 190 lb.assistants to hold each side of the
    camera, a tea cart full of holders and I'm there!

    Anyone wanna hire me? ;)

    Jeff
    Le Grande Raoul, Nov 18, 2003
    #20
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Scott D. Weber For Unuathorized Thoughts Inc.

    Backing Up Large Files..Or A Large Amount Of Files

    Scott D. Weber For Unuathorized Thoughts Inc., Sep 17, 2003, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    958
    Joseph
    Sep 19, 2003
  2. Guest

    The main drawback of a digital camera

    Guest, Jul 26, 2005, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    62
    Views:
    1,041
    Ronald Baird
    Aug 2, 2005
  3. Barney Easthal

    Drawback to Google Chrome - or is it?

    Barney Easthal, Jan 14, 2009, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    4
    Views:
    1,009
    dog snot
    Jan 17, 2009
  4. RichA

    Tripods have one major drawback

    RichA, Jan 26, 2010, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    35
    Views:
    870
    John Turco
    Jan 30, 2010
  5. PeterN

    long exposures drawback

    PeterN, Jul 21, 2013, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    15
    Views:
    189
    PeterN
    Jul 23, 2013
Loading...

Share This Page