1.5X Sensors VS. Full Frame and other questions...

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Progressiveabsolution, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. Progressiveabsolution

    Mark² Guest

    "You" was meant generically, Alfred. -Not picking on YOU.
    :)
     
    Mark², Apr 28, 2006
    #21
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  2. It crops as you could do with scissors (on the prints, not on the
    sensor, btw).


    The essential and practical difference is the crop, changing the field
    of view of the lenses.

    More exactly, there are 2 consequences of the crop :
    1) It narrows field of view without modifying depth of field,
    2) It enlarges the central part of the image that has better
    resolution, making it (optically speaking) a neutral operation at first
    order.
    It depends also on the sensors and bodies, not only on the crop factor
    itself...
    But as the FF sensor is bigger, it can either have the same count of
    bigger pixels (more dynamic range and less noise, that may be something
    like 1.5x higher ISO with same noise) or have more pixels of the same
    size (1.5x more resolution... if the lens matches it of course).
    That gives an edge to the FF sensor, and may then justify its (much
    more than 1.5x) higher cost.
     
    nikojorj_jaimepaslapub, Apr 28, 2006
    #22
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  3. Which is obviously the reason that 8x10 view cameras have always
    so damned popular.
     
    Floyd L. Davidson, Apr 28, 2006
    #23
  4. wrote:
    : Progressiveabsolution wrote:
    : > What exactly does the 1.5X crop do to the image that is produced from
    : > the camera?

    : It crops as you could do with scissors (on the prints, not on the
    : sensor, btw).

    : > What is the essential difference in image quality between a full frame
    : > body and a 1.5-1.6X cropped body?

    : The essential and practical difference is the crop, changing the field
    : of view of the lenses.

    : More exactly, there are 2 consequences of the crop :
    : 1) It narrows field of view without modifying depth of field,
    : 2) It enlarges the central part of the image that has better
    : resolution, making it (optically speaking) a neutral operation at first
    : order.

    : > How much of a difference is there in image quality between the full
    : > frame body and the 1.5-1.6X sensor bodies?

    : It depends also on the sensors and bodies, not only on the crop factor
    : itself...
    : But as the FF sensor is bigger, it can either have the same count of
    : bigger pixels (more dynamic range and less noise, that may be something
    : like 1.5x higher ISO with same noise) or have more pixels of the same
    : size (1.5x more resolution... if the lens matches it of course).
    : That gives an edge to the FF sensor, and may then justify its (much
    : more than 1.5x) higher cost.

    I agree with your assessment. First "Quality" of an image depends on so
    many factors (lens, accuracy of mechanicals in lens, accuracy of
    mechanicals in camera, number and placement of light sensing elements on
    the sensor, etc) that the physical size of the sensor is very low on the
    list. A sensor that is 2 ft by 3 ft with 12 rows of 16 light sensing
    elements will only be able to resolve a detail that is at least the size
    of a single light sensitive element. While a sensor with much smaller
    physical dimensions but with 1 million sensing elements will be able to
    resolve details that are down to 1 millionth of the image (the size of one
    light sensitive element).

    It is true that it is much easier to focus an image on a large sensor
    array. Also a lens that is supposed to focus an image on a huge sensor can
    be easier to make and of less expensive materials than one that has to
    work on microscopic levels (to a point), but until we are comparing a 1mp
    sensor that is 1' square vs a 1mp sensor that is 1/4" square this is not
    the major factor in "quality".

    If an image of a black square on a white wall is projected on a sensor
    such that the outer edge of the black square exactly aligns with the
    outer edge of the sensor it makes no difference if the sensor array is
    3/4" wide or 2' wide. The only difference that the different sensor
    dimensions (but the same number of pixels) affords is that the optics and
    mechanicals have to adjust to reflect the different sensor size. True, if
    I am composing my shot purely by math I will have to adjust the focal
    length to a new set of numbers. But since most of the time I compose my
    shots by looking through the viewfinder and moving my body placement and
    zoom to achieve the composition I desire. It rarely makes any strong
    difference what the actual number on the lens says as long as I get the
    composition I am desiring. Mostly I use the focal length numbers as
    general guides when choosing what range I am looking for (I don't reach
    for a multi hundred focal length lens when I am trying to take an image of
    the family sitting around the Thanksgiving table). :) Other than requiring
    my lens selection to have more low numbers than I used to have with film,
    it really makes little difference to the vast majority of my shots if my
    lens is set to 50mm for film or 33mm for digital. I get the same resultant
    image, and that's what I am trying for. IMHO

    Randy

    ==========
    Randy Berbaum
    Champaign, IL
     
    Randy Berbaum, Apr 28, 2006
    #24
  5. Or just use a tripod and get no additional noise.
     
    Thomas T. Veldhouse, Apr 28, 2006
    #25
  6. Absolutely! In any scenario that I can, it will be with me. There are always
    exceptions, and I suppose that is where a VR or IS lens becomes useful.
     
    Thomas T. Veldhouse, Apr 28, 2006
    #26
  7. They've always been popular. Among people who appreciate/have use for that
    level of image quality. It's not for everyone, since the convenience of
    smaller formats makes them, well, more convenient. At a cost in image
    quality.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
     
    David J. Littleboy, Apr 28, 2006
    #27
  8. Let's put it this way: If I'm shooting at dusk or dawn and it's a
    landscape, I'll "lug" a tripod. If it's midday and I am serious about
    the shot, I'll use one.

    Besides, in lower light situations, I wouldn't stop down anywhere near
    that much. Why would you, smilin' Alf?
     
    John McWilliams, Apr 28, 2006
    #28
  9. Thanks everyone for your contributions. I should have stated the
    obvious. When dealing with image quality alone, given the same
    photographer using the exact same equipment on his/her D30 vs.
    D5/1DSMKII, will there be any reason aside from the cropping factor of
    view to have the full framed body over the 1.6X D30 body? Lets take
    two images where we are shooting a 50mm 1.8 on each Canon body. Both
    photos are developed with similar care that they are taken. One is
    obviously showing a lot more of the view than the other. But is the
    one showing a lot more of the view than the other also showing a better
    image (i.e. more resolution/detail/"dimensionality"/etc.)? What I am
    trying to figure out is why one camera would produce a better image
    than the other camera. What specifically is it that would give the
    full framed body an edge over the others? There must be more to it if
    someone is willing to shell out $7000 for the 1DSMKII.

    I've looked at a lot of images and to my eyes the digital all looks the
    same. I think there may be a little more quality with the full bodies
    as the images seem to have a little more dimensionality and less
    flatness of plane/space, but they all look quite similar. I wish I had
    some images in front of me to be able to see the difference which is
    why I am asking others what they see and when/why/how they see it.

    Thanks again. This has been a very helpful thread and the users here
    are very good.
     
    Progressiveabsolution, Apr 28, 2006
    #29
  10. Oh, yes they are very *popular*, and the market is several
    millions a year too, unlike those useless SLR cameras with a
    smaller image size and nothing else to offer.

    I assume you enjoy other fantancies, but that one is good
    enough for now.

    They are many things, none of which come close to being what we
    might describe as "popular".

    However... What we *do* have 150 years of common sense
    demonstrating is a steady progression from larger to smaller
    image sensors *because* as the size gets smaller the versatility
    and flexibility of the photographic process grows at a rate
    closer to geometric than to linear. Now I suppose you can argue
    that doesn't make them "better", but only for strange
    definitions of "better".
     
    Floyd L. Davidson, Apr 28, 2006
    #30
  11. Progressiveabsolution

    Neil Ellwood Guest

    Monopod, tree pod camera screw etc. There are more ways to skin a cat........
     
    Neil Ellwood, Apr 28, 2006
    #31
  12. There's no way a cropped sensor has more distortion, period. WA
    distortion is highest at the edge of a FF sensor, which is cropped out
    a 1.5 or 1.6 sensor.

    Also, there are good 24-70 range lenses available for (Nikon) 1.5
    sensors -- like, say the well-regarded 17-55 f2.8 AFS DX, eh?
     
    Chris in Red Stick, Apr 28, 2006
    #32
  13. Then, my answer will be obvious : cameras don't make good images,
    whereas photographers do. Period.

    Given that, an experienced and more or less fortuned photographer may
    prefer a 1DsMkII because of thing stated a few posts ago, mainly lower
    noise (ie higher dynamic range) and higher resolution, but only to the
    point that a bad craftsman has always bad tools...
    Are these conveniences, and the necessary hassle to profit of them (eg
    heavy tripod...), worth the few grands? Your call!
    But be aware that these grands will only buy you a good tool, and not
    image quality in itself!
     
    nikojorj_jaimepaslapub, Apr 28, 2006
    #33
  14. Progressiveabsolution

    Alfred Molon Guest

    Nothing against tripods, I just don't lug them all the time around with
    me. A tripod adds to the bulk, it takes time to set it up for the camera
    and so on, so it is better if you are not forced to use it.

    Generally speaking, cameras with a smaller sensor allow you to shoot at
    wider apertures (wide enough for handheld photography) while still
    having enough DOF. Instead large format cameras force you to choose
    small apertures if you need DOF, which makes tripods necessary.
     
    Alfred Molon, Apr 28, 2006
    #34
  15. Bad logic. You can't use the same lens for WA shots on the cropped sensor,
    so you have to compare the different lenses, e.g. Canon 17-40 vs. Canon
    10-22 or the 10-20mm third party lenses to the 17-35mm third party lenses.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
     
    David J. Littleboy, Apr 29, 2006
    #35
  16. Really? 35mm showed up early on, an until digital, no one made serious use
    of anything smaller. In fact, all the smaller formats (half frame, APS,
    instamatic) died. Except for Minox which is so bad it's camp. Digital makes
    the differences a lot less obvious. But they're still there in the form of
    noise and dynamic range.
    The quality of larger prints goes way down as you move from, say, 8x10 to
    6x9 to 35mm.

    If you don't give a rats arse about quality prints, then you don't give a
    rats arse. But people who understand quality prints know that every format
    is a compromise between being small enough to be usable (and actually get
    the shot) and the quality of the resultant print. (Or, inversely, that a
    given format limits the size of the quality print you can produce.)

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
     
    David J. Littleboy, Apr 29, 2006
    #36
  17. Progressiveabsolution

    Mark² Guest

    I don't always have mine either. But when I intend to create an image for
    BIG enlargement, I want to capture as much sharpness as I can. I don't have
    a full frame DSLR yet, but even with a crop, you need all the sharpness you
    can get. It's truly amazing what a difference it makes when you are doing
    big prints.
    Right. So...a tripod becomes all the more necessary with full frame and
    beyond.

    One of the best investments I've made in photo gear was my recent carbon
    fiber tripod purchase.
    -But NOT because it is more steady...rather simply because it is SO much
    lighter that it means I take it along more often. Its no longer such a
    chore to haul around. You can have the steadiest tripod on Earth, but if
    its too much of a pain to carry, its rather a waste. :)

    I also am a big fan of IS lenses, since it allows for a huge break when not
    using a tripod or monopod. For smaller prints, its amazing how helpful it
    is. But when you need deeeeep
    DOF, like in this shot:
    http://www.pbase.com/markuson/image/58828940/original
    IS is useless, and its time to break out the tripod.
    :)
    -Mark²
     
    Mark², Apr 29, 2006
    #37
  18. Progressiveabsolution

    Mark² Guest

    And what would be wrong with that?
    It would be basically accurate to make such an argument.
    Well put.
    While I was impressed with how well my recent half-dome image printed at 17"
    wide and 25" tall...my positive reaction to the print was felt within the
    context of my understanding of the limitations of my capture device. The
    print was not anywhere close to what a medium format sensor of similar
    construction could have rendered.

    Mark²
     
    Mark², Apr 29, 2006
    #38
  19. So you are saying that today the same sensor size commonly in
    use is the same as was the case 150 years ago? or 100? or 50?
    or even 25?

    Your discussion is *not* supporting your original statement.
    The fact is that today there are millions of sensors sold every
    year that are smaller than 35mm, and 30 years ago that was not
    true... but at that time there were millions of sensors sold
    every year that were smaller than 4x5, which was not true 50
    years before that...

    And before that... well you already do know, despite ignoring
    it.

    We have 150 years of history showing us that smaller sensors
    make better cameras. Not the reverse as you claimed.
    But that alone does *not* justify your statement that cameras
    with larger sensors are necessarily better. If they were
    better, people *would* be buying them by the millions... and
    what they *are* buying by the millions is *smaller* sensors.
    So you do all of your work with an 8x10???? Why not 11x14, as
    that would be even "better".

    Or should we first note that a picture you *can't get* isn't
    worth the paper you didn't print it on!
     
    Floyd L. Davidson, Apr 29, 2006
    #39
  20. Progressiveabsolution

    Mark² Guest

    People buy mBILLIONS of McDonalds "burgers" too.
    Surely they MUST be teh best burgers... (ugh)
    Try to see the forest.
    That tree seems to be blocking your view a bit.
    :)
     
    Mark², Apr 29, 2006
    #40
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