Full Frame vs APS-C

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by measekite, Sep 18, 2008.

  1. measekite

    measekite Guest

    There are some who profess that a full frame sensor produces far better
    images than the APS-C sensor.

    There are other who profess that the full frame sensor only produces
    better images under certain circumstances and only when enlarged to the
    real big print.

    My Questions:

    How big a print before you see a significant noticeable difference?

    Under what circumstances will you see a significant noticeable difference?

    How much cropping needs to be done to see a significant noticeable

    Opinions please!

    For those who have used both; what differences do you see and where do you
    see them?

    The cost for a good APS-C sensor camera can range from about $800 to about
    $1800 on the high end while the full frame sensor camera costs about
    $3,000 plus the lenses are also more. In addition it is heavier and less

    It does have the advantage of better wide angle capability while the
    smaller sensor has better telephoto range. Which is more important to
    most people who want to create artistic scenic photographs?
    measekite, Sep 18, 2008
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  2. measekite

    saycheez Guest

    It isn't what you see it is what you think you see that matters.
    In the old days golden eared audiophiles would carp about the superiority of
    high priced audio electronics (amplifiers, not speakers which can have
    clearly audible differences).
    However not one single double blind hearing test showed that these listeners
    could identify the higher priced gear as superior. Some studies showed that
    some listeners consistently discerned differences between mid-priced and
    high priced electronics but could not reliably identify which was which.
    The artistry (the vision thing) of the photographer and the skill of the
    printer matter more than the gear.
    Ever has it been ever shall it be.
    Does anyone in their right mind, as opposed to those of us who frequent this
    newsgroup, think it really matters if the umpteenth
    wedding/advertising/snapshot image is captured with a 21 or a 6 mp sensor
    when its all the same disposable junk imagery anyway?
    saycheez, Sep 18, 2008
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  3. measekite

    measekite Guest

    I am not speaking about MP I am speaking about the size of the sensor and
    where and under what circumstances a larger sensor can produce
    substantially better images that are printed and again at what size.
    measekite, Sep 18, 2008
  4. measekite

    Eric Stevens Guest

    There was one famous double-blind test organised by Peter Walker of
    Quad in which he challenged critics to show that they could reliably
    tell the difference between a Quad amplifier and a Naim. All of the
    front line critics found reasons whey they couldn't take part.
    Aspiring second line critics participated and were found to perform no
    better than random chance.

    Peter Walker then explained and demonstrated there was a difference in
    sound and why that should be. He then made a small change to the Quad
    and made it sound like a Naim, and vice versa.

    Ultra crticism enters the relms of bullshit. The same applies to

    Eric Stevens
    Eric Stevens, Sep 18, 2008
  5. measekite

    Scott W Guest

    The larger sensor is going to give you the most bang for the buck in
    low light conditions.

    A larger sensor will use less expensive lenses, not more. For example
    the Canon 50mm f/1.8 lens is cost around $70, to get the same field of
    view on a cropped sensor camera you would need something around 28mm,
    a 28mm f/1.8 costs far more then the 50mm one.

    Scott W, Sep 18, 2008
  6. measekite

    Guest Guest

    my favourite is monster cable versus coat hangers:


    Seven different songs were played, each time heard with the speaker
    hooked up to Monster Cables, and the other time, hooked up to coat
    hanger wire. Nobody could determine which was the Monster Cable and
    which was the coat hanger. The kicker? None of the subjects even knew
    that coat hangers were going to be used.
    Guest, Sep 18, 2008
  7. measekite

    Archibald Guest

    And wine tasting. The "experts" can't tell which wine is best unless
    they can see the label.

    Archibald, Sep 18, 2008
  8. measekite

    Archibald Guest

    That's because there isn't a 28mm f/1.8 made for the small sensor. If
    there was, and once it was mass-produced, it would probably be cheaper
    (and lighter) than the 50mm f/1.8.

    Archibald, Sep 18, 2008
  9. measekite

    Eric Stevens Guest

    That doesn't happen in any wine competition of which I am aware. The
    only visible labels on the bottles carry a number.

    Eric Stevens
    Eric Stevens, Sep 19, 2008
  10. measekite

    Scott W Guest

    True, it really bugs me that there are no prime lenses for the cropped

    Scott W, Sep 19, 2008
  11. measekite

    Guest Guest

    zooms are what sell, not fixed focal length lenses. nevertheless,
    there are a few for cropped sensors, including the nikon 10.5mm fisheye
    and the sigma 30mm f/1.4. there's no advantage in making a crop sensor
    that isn't a wide angle lens.
    Guest, Sep 19, 2008
  12. measekite

    Ray Fischer Guest

    You're looking for it.
    Ray Fischer, Sep 19, 2008
  13. measekite

    Me Guest

    It /seemed/ better than a 16-35l I tried - even at f4. Sure, you'd
    normally stop UWA lenses down anyway for compositional reasons, not just
    optical (edge) performance. My Sigma 10-20 is pretty darned good -
    though I think I may have been lucky.
    Yep - though on Dx, some of Nikons consumer zooms aren't bad
    (18-70/16-85VR), and the Canon kit lenses are apparently quite good now too.
    The 5dII release has made me rethink the 5d. I might be able to pick up
    a cheap Mk 1 sometime. Although I'm now a Nikon user, the shallow DOF
    with Fx has appeal, and the image quality from the 5d can be quite
    awesome. I might get one to use with just a 50mm f1.4. US$3k for D700
    doesn't make sense to me.
    Me, Sep 19, 2008
  14. Wrong question.
    Much better. Other things being equal, the larger sensor will give you less
    depth of field and either less noise, more resolution, or both.

    For example, the recently released Nikon D700 gives a "normal" ISO range up
    to 6400. The D300, which is almost as recent, goes only up to ISO 3200.
    The number of pixels in each of these cameras' sensors is essentially the
    same, so the extra stop of sensitivity probably comes from the bigger
    Who cares? The real question is which is more important to *you*. If you
    go with the bigger sensor, you will have greater wide-angle capability, more
    low-light sensitivity, and more options for selective focus. If you pick
    the smaller sensor, you will have greater telephoto capability, more options
    for extended depth of field, and more money in your pocket, in exchange for
    which you will have to sacrifice some of that wide-angle and low-light

    Which alternative makes more sense for you is not something that other
    people can usefully tell you.
    Andrew Koenig, Sep 19, 2008
  15. Archibald wrote:
    No. (a) this doesn't happen in normal competitions - the labels are
    hidden, and (b) everyone's definition of "best" will differ, at least to
    the extent that the wine which may be generally agreed to be the "finest"
    may not suit your own palette best.

    Another example closer to photography. Many people hold certain
    black-and-white movies in high regard, but I can't stand them.

    So you choose the best tool for your photographic task, knowing that a
    larger-area sensor has the capability of producing a better image, if you
    need it.

    David J Taylor, Sep 19, 2008
  16. measekite wrote:
    Perhaps Nikon offer better value in some parts of the lens range?

    David J Taylor, Sep 19, 2008
  17. measekite

    Scott W Guest

    I have not had luck with Sigma lenses, maybe is was just the one I got
    but I would have a hard time buying one.
    The tele primes work great on an APS-C camera, It is the wide angle
    lenses that I really need, like how about an 18mm f/1.8? I would even
    be happy with a 18mm f/2.8.

    Scott W, Sep 19, 2008
  18. measekite

    Me Guest

    Yes - but, arguably at the same FOV and desired DOF, you need one stop
    /more/ with Fx - which means longer shutter speed or higher ISO,
    canceling out the gain that many measurebating theorists (many of whom
    don't take real photos) claim. So it's lucky that the advantage of the
    example you gave (D300 vs D700) is about a stop and a half - not one
    stop. Fx wins by a bit. But /if/ the difference was so huge, then
    clearly small sensor point and shoot cameras /must/ be totally hopeless.
    Strangely enough, many of them aren't, thereby proving that the
    difference can't be "huge".
    "one stop" is IMO a good approximate metric with which to quantify the
    Fx vs Dx advantage. As ever, that last one stop costs.
    No you're wrong there. Options for extended DOF are exactly the same!
    Me, Sep 19, 2008
  19. measekite

    measekite Guest

    I understand except for the depth of field part.

    Also, what I would like to know is if you use both cameras with comparable
    lenses and take the same photo of a scenic landscape and then crop as
    needed to get a 16x20 print what differences can one see and will those
    differences be significant?
    measekite, Sep 19, 2008
  20. measekite

    dj_nme Guest

    measekite wrote:
    If both cameras had a lens of the same focal length and aperture setting
    and both had pixels of the same size (IE: 6mp APS-c Vs 12mp FF), then
    the crop from the FF sensor camera should look almost identical to the
    un-cropped APS-c sensor camera.
    On the other hand: if both were printed to fit and only cropped to fit
    the long side of the page, then the APS-c sensor camera image would have
    less DoF because the image must be printed 50% larger to fit the same
    paper size and everything is made larger including the difference
    between "in focus" and "slightly out of focus".
    dj_nme, Sep 20, 2008
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