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Thread: Full frame vs. cropped sensors

  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickmak
    With a cropped sensor you don't get the magnification of a longer lens right? I mean, with a 1.6x crop factor on a 300mm lens don't mean its a 480mm lens because it doesn't have the magnification of a 480mm lens. You still get a magnification of 300mm I think...

    Is that true?
    That's exactly correct, Nickmak!

    Cheers,
    bcoolboy

  2. #42
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    Responding to Jed's post now.

    Actually, medium format backs haven't until very recently been approaching full frame. For a long time, the most popular Phillips chip for medium format backs was actually 35mm sized (ie 36 x 24mm). So there was a lot of wastage, and it was even harder to get true wide angles given that it is far harder to get ultra wides to fit medium format cameras compared to 35mm systems. There is a lot more wastage in using a 36x24mm chip in even a 645 system, compared to an APS in a 35mm. So your point is flawed and actually does much to undermine your argument!

    Actually, that was the main thrust of my argument! I was saying that if you are not exploiting your image circle to the fullest, you are not maximizing the potential of your lens investment. It's like buying a loaf of bread and then only eating the middle 1/3 of it because you don't have enough jam.

    At the same time, knowing that you have a DX size sensor could save you a bundle of money. If you knew you'd need a 600/4 on full frame, but now had a D2x, you could buy a 300/4 on the crop mode (assuming 6.8 mp is sufficient), and save about S$12000.

    Nothing to buying a 300/4, and mount it on your FF camera, and then cropping off half the picture and faking a "600/4" lens is there? In fact, you still get higher resolution if you crop a 1DsMk2 when compared to the 2x crop of the D2X: 16MP/2 = 8MP on the 1DsMk2, vs. 6.8MP on the D2X (if I remember correctly). So unfortunately I cannot agree with you on this point.

    Furthermore, it doesn't matter how well you design a lens, it's corners and edges *always* perform worse than its middle. By using a full frame lens on a full frame camera, or a DX lens on a DX camera, your corners and edges suffer from quality deterioration. If anything, the only way of achieving a lens that performs consistently "from corner to corner at wide apertures" is to actually use an oversized lens. For instance a full frame lens on a DX sensor... take the difference between the Nikon and Sigma 12-24 lenses for instance.

    That is a rather novel defense of the APS crop! Very interesting ... would you argue that an APS film SLR is superior to a 35mm film SLR, if you are actually discarding the worst performing part of the imaging circle?

    Besides, if you look at the MTF charts:


    (MTF chart for the Canon 135 F/2L)

    ... you will see that in this particular example, there is negligible loss of resolution by going from an APS sensor crop to a full frame crop, especially if you stop down to F/8 (thick blue line). Even wide open (thick black line) there isn't very much difference.

    Of course, MTF charts vary from lens to lens but you are hardly going to mount an el-cheapo consumer plastic lens on your multi-thousand dollar FF DSLR are you? The 1Ds was known to be very demanding on lenses and would show up lens deficiencies as clearly as an MTF chart. It forces lens manufacturers to do their job properly.

    (Will respond to the rest of your points in a seperate post)

  3. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis
    How did you come up with this statistic ?.
    Nobody is against FF if it is at a reasonable price bracket.
    I am more surprise that more are lusting after a FF body when they should be getting good lens instead. Maybe can try a FF body, put a body cap with a hole in it and try to get good pictures from there.
    From what i know and what i've seen. I believe i'm not the only one who've spotted the trend. I have no idea why. Probably because they want to defend their investment? If Nikon had released a FF camera, i bet most of them won't even be posting what they just posted in this thread.


    From tomshen too


    Maybe some day in the future when sensors are made with bio-technology, pixels can be freely re-allocated. Then you have a MF size sensor with adjustable FLM from 0.5x to 20x without losing effective pixel density. Happy?

    I believe Nikons users won't be so defensive on FF should Kodak not fail their 14n...
    To Amfibius : Why are you bothering about these people and their unwavering brand loyalty? Just let them be, they'll only be defending themselves more anyway.
    Last edited by ipaquser; 22nd September 2004 at 06:21 PM.

  4. #44
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    Having a smaller sensor means a lens has to cover a smaller image circle, which in turn means that manufacturers can make higher-resolving lenses as they have to spend less effort correcting for aberration, which in turn eliminates any issues with resolution problems. [...] However in theory DX lenses *could* be designed a stop faster than their equivalent full frame lenses, for the same size, weight and price (excepting initial R&D considerations). That it isn't being done is a source of much grief to me.

    OK i'm not going to argue with that.

    Another factor is that microlenses really prefer light to be hitting them as close to perpendicular as possible.

    I believe that this is only true for subjects which are close to the camera and wide angle lenses because of the divergent beam (correct me if I am wrong). Not so much of a problem for normal and telephoto lenses. I accept your point - in theory you should get more light falloff on a FF sensor.

    You've gone on about DX lenses not saving money. I suggest they do. And you've completely forgotten than DX *cameras* are significantly cheaper than full frame cameras.

    I haven't forgotten that. Which is why I mentioned in one of my previous posts with, "cost issues aside ..."

    (I did not bother quoting the stuff which we both agreed with to try to keep this post short).

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickmak
    With a cropped sensor you don't get the magnification of a longer lens right? I mean, with a 1.6x crop factor on a 300mm lens don't mean its a 480mm lens because it doesn't have the magnification of a 480mm lens. You still get a magnification of 300mm I think...

    Is that true?
    standing at the same location with a full frame camera, you'll need to use a 480mm lens to capture the same exact frame (the depth of field is a bit different but that's a different story).

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by ipaquser
    From what i know and what i've seen. I believe i'm not the only one who've spotted the trend. I have no idea why. Probably because they want to defend their investment? If Nikon had released a FF camera, i bet most of them won't even be posting what they just posted in this thread.


    From tomshen too
    I think you seriously mixed up your personal thoughts with the intention of this thread and discussion also the basis for this discussion.

    We're not against FF. And put it simply, Nikon might just release a FF anytime, we won't know, but if the price is rocket high 14K, you'll see us Nikonians grumbling as well. If it's at 8K, you'll see that nobody's going to complain.

    Also this discussion is based on FF vs APS, it has nothing to do with Nikon nor Canon, we're just using Canon and Nikon as examples because they happen to have a FF and DX/EF-S sized APS. Nobody's siding with any side.

    Read carefully, if you want to start a N C war, you're going to die terribly here. From what I see/feel from your last comment and reply to Dennis, you're obviously trying to raise a war here. Tread carefully, go study for your A's instead of surfing forums

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkw
    Amfibius,
    I'm afraid you've been sidetracked. What started off as "Canon ahead of Nikon", which is true and easy to defend, has turned into "FF better than APS", which is less true and less easy to defend.
    There is no way I would fight a battle which I think I would lose

    Look, it's very simple ... if Nikon releases a D3 next year with a FF sensor, guess which thread i'm going to dig up? I'm going to ask all the FF detractors to condemn the D3 using the same arguments they are using now.

    I only wish I was around to start a debate on AF, a debate on IS, a debate on electronic aperture control ...

    It's going to get interesting. Watch this space.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    There is no way I would fight a battle which I think I would lose

    Look, it's very simple ... if Nikon releases a D3 next year with a FF sensor, guess which thread i'm going to dig up? I'm going to ask all the FF detractors to condemn the D3 using the same arguments they are using now.

    I only wish I was around to start a debate on AF, a debate on IS, a debate on electronic aperture control ...

    It's going to get interesting. Watch this space.
    Well, maybe D2XFF? You will see us complaining if it's priced at 14K.

    Amfibius

  9. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by espn
    I think you seriously mixed up your personal thoughts with the intention of this thread and discussion also the basis for this discussion.

    We're not against FF. And put it simply, Nikon might just release a FF anytime, we won't know, but if the price is rocket high 14K, you'll see us Nikonians grumbling as well. If it's at 8K, you'll see that nobody's going to complain.

    Also this discussion is based on FF vs APS, it has nothing to do with Nikon nor Canon, we're just using Canon and Nikon as examples because they happen to have a FF and DX/EF-S sized APS. Nobody's siding with any side.

    Read carefully, if you want to start a N C war, you're going to die terribly here. From what I see/feel from your last comment and reply to Dennis, you're obviously trying to raise a war here. Tread carefully, go study for your A's instead of surfing forums
    Uhh, you contradict yourself. Yeah sure, you can go and take your diploma too. lol.

  10. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    Look, it's very simple ... if Nikon releases a D3 next year with a FF sensor, guess which thread i'm going to dig up? I'm going to ask all the FF detractors to condemn the D3 using the same arguments they are using now.
    Well said.

  11. #51

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    i believe it all comes down to how refine the co. make their DSLR. compare a Kodak 14n FF to a Canon 1Ds FF, who makes a more refine & useable DSLR?

    i have seen friends' wedding pics taken with those 6MP MFormat backs & i seriously think they looked horrible. noise was very hi for pics taken in studio & outdoor. maybe it was done on purpose to give it an arty look but its certainly an eyesore to me.

    bottom line: its the refinement of technology that really makes a different, not so much of the "size does matter" issue. Canon has proven to us that even w/o FF, u can achieve outstanding quality with 20D.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    Resorting to this and refusing to reply simply shows that you were simply regurgitating hearsay and false claims without any understanding to the subject matter and being unable to explain the logic behind your claims.
    OK, comment withdrawn.

    I have said many times that photosensor size is only ONE of many determinants of dynamic range and noise suppression. I have also argued that all things being equal, a larger photosensor will give you superior dynamic range and noise control.

    I'll use an analogy again. Suppose you were an engine designer, and you were concerned about power output. You have at your disposal these technologies: variable valve timing, variable inlet manifold, turbocharger, electronic engine management, fuel injection, and access to exotic metals. Wouldn't you agree that a larger engine, rev for rev, would produce more power and more torque than a smaller engine using the same technology? It's like saying that you like 1.5L cars and you will never purchase a car with a larger engine because there are other technologies that will produce more power. Yes of course you would be right, but why on earth would you want to limit yourself like that?

  13. #53

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    You all are just typing a whole lot of true, but indigestable facts.
    Cropped is cropped, full frame is full frame.
    Cropped is cheaper that's all.
    There's no such thing as focal length multiplier. You DO NOT multiply the focal length! You ONLY crop the frame. The DOF is different.

    So the conclusion is...
    BOTH is just as good.
    Cropped saves U $, FF gives u better DOF.

    -EOF-

  14. #54

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    OK, comment withdrawn.
    I have said many times that photosensor size is only ONE of many determinants of dynamic range and noise suppression. I have also argued that all things being equal, a larger photosensor will give you superior dynamic range and noise control.
    No you didn't. If you did I would have agreed with you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    Each sensor gathers more light. This theoretically increases dynamic range, although like you said we'll have to wait till the photos are out to judge for ourselves.
    This is what you said in this thread:http://forums.clubsnap.org/showthrea...9&page=2&pp=20

    When asked to explain how that can be possible, you replied with this:
    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    Well, here you go. CMOS/CCD engineers are always trying to improve the light gathering ability of each individual pixel. This is because they know that if you gather less light, the signal needs to be amplified more, the sensor is more at risk of becoming oversaturated (and then spill electrons into neighbouring pixels). All things being equal (apart from the sensor size), a sensor with a larger pixel pitch will allow more precise measurement of light levels, especially in extreme circumstances. More precise measurement = increased dynamic range.


    The engineers try to get around this by increasing the sensor size (Canon), or moving the transistors around each pixel (20D), or stacking the sensors on top of each other (Foveon), or rearranging the grid (Fuji), and so on.
    How does more precise measurement equate to increased dynamic range? You seem to be taking a great big leap in logic here, hence my query to you of what constitutes dynamic range.

    You keep saying that increasing sensor size directly leads to improved dynamic range, without considering that it depends more on the implementation rather than physical dimensions. You spoke of it as if it were the gospel but yet did not attempt to explain it in any detail.

    Note, you have not once explained how a larger sensor or perhaps a greater pixel pitch helps directly in this area.

    I'll use an analogy again. Suppose you were an engine designer, and you were concerned about power output. You have at your disposal these technologies: variable valve timing, variable inlet manifold, turbocharger, electronic engine management, fuel injection, and access to exotic metals. Wouldn't you agree that a larger engine, rev for rev, would produce more power and more torque than a smaller engine using the same technology? It's like saying that you like 1.5L cars and you will never purchase a car with a larger engine because there are other technologies that will produce more power. Yes of course you would be right, but why on earth would you want to limit yourself like that?
    The important term here is ceteris paribus. In the real world, it doesn't always apply so I believe you should be more specific of what is a FACT/LAW and what is a trend.

    There is a great big difference in stating what you know intimately and with great certainty an outcome, compared with a general observation of a trend. To me, it appears that you tend to present your views as facts, which tends to be rather confusing, especially when your logic isn't clear.
    Last edited by Zerstorer; 22nd September 2004 at 07:26 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nickmak
    With a cropped sensor you don't get the magnification of a longer lens right? I mean, with a 1.6x crop factor on a 300mm lens don't mean its a 480mm lens because it doesn't have the magnification of a 480mm lens. You still get a magnification of 300mm I think...

    Is that true?
    Yeah, it is true, that is why some wish to refer it as a cropping factor of 1.6 or 1.5. You actually like shooting 300mm and then crop it to 450 or 480mm.

    Now, one thing I noticed about Nikon D100 - the mirror and shutter being taken from the F80 is a FF affair, using the full size mirror and shutter. As a result, mirror recoil makes the body vibrate and noisy. If a DX size mirror and shutter were to be used, the mirror would be like 50% lighter and shutter would be 50% smaller in area or thereabout. I dunno about the pentaprism or pentamirror, if they use a DX size thing or not. A DX size pentaprism would be like 30% the weight of the FF affaire becos it is volumetric....

    I heard that the D70 is based loosely on the F75 and the mirror and shutter are FF affaire too. So, my point is Nikon need not go back to FF when the technology arrives. Nikon is keeping the same mirror, shutter, pentaprism and many of the lenses, especially those telephoto primes and zooms. Not surprising that in 3, 5 or 8 years time, we may be back to FF.

  16. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    Well, here you go. CMOS/CCD engineers are always trying to improve the light gathering ability of each individual pixel. This is because they know that if you gather less light, the signal needs to be amplified more, the sensor is more at risk of becoming oversaturated (and then spill electrons into neighbouring pixels). All things being equal (apart from the sensor size), a sensor with a larger pixel pitch will allow more precise measurement of light levels, especially in extreme circumstances. More precise measurement = increased dynamic range.

    The engineers try to get around this by increasing the sensor size (Canon), or moving the transistors around each pixel (20D), or stacking the sensors on top of each other (Foveon), or rearranging the grid (Fuji), and so on.
    How does more precise measurement equate to increased dynamic range? You seem to be taking a great big leap in logic here, hence my query to you of what constitutes dynamic range.

    You keep saying that increasing sensor size directly leads to improved dynamic range, without considering that it depends more on the implementation rather than physical dimensions. You spoke of it as if it were the gospel but yet did not attempt to explain it in any detail.

    Note, you have not once explained how a larger sensor or perhaps a greater pixel pitch helps directly in this area.
    I would think that a larger pixel does help in producing better dynamic range. Taking the bucket of water analogy again, the bigger the bucket, the more water (charge) you can store. Imagine that if you scoop a small amount of water from the bucket with a cup and that this translates to a certain dynamic range step size, hence with a bigger bucket, you need more scoops to empty the bucket meaning more step sizes thus a wider dynamic range.

    As to why sensors with smaller pixels in recent cameras (e.g. 1DM2) seem to have better dynamic range compared to larger pixel sensors in older cameras, I would think that it's because we have progressed in making the 'cup' smaller - circuitries that can measure in smaller steps sizes.

    So a bigger pixel does produce better dynamic range all else being equal (the 'cup' etc etc ... )

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    Zerstorer, I give up. I don't want to waste any more energy explaining what is self-evident to myself and many others. If you still cannot see why a larger pixel pitch produces better dynamic range, reduced noise, etc. after all that, I cannot help you. One gets the impression you are sitting in front of the PC, foaming at the mouth with your fangs out and hair on fire.

    Perhaps ask yourself why a low end DSLR produces better images across all ISO's than a Sony DSC-F828?

  18. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by smallaperture
    Now, one thing I noticed about Nikon D100 - the mirror and shutter being taken from the F80 is a FF affair, using the full size mirror and shutter. As a result, mirror recoil makes the body vibrate and noisy. If a DX size mirror and shutter were to be used, the mirror would be like 50% lighter and shutter would be 50% smaller in area or thereabout.
    Its more a design issue than a size issue. The D60 mirror slap is far less pronounced than that of the F80-class DSLRs. Using the respective 300mm f/4 lenses with 1/30 or 1/60 shutter speed, i would say the difference is night and day.

    And ironically, the D60 has mirror lock-up while the D100 doesn't (it has a mirror flip up then fire delay thing tho')

  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amfibius
    Zerstorer, I give up. I don't want to waste any more energy explaining what is self-evident to myself and many others. If you still cannot see why a larger pixel pitch produces better dynamic range, reduced noise, etc. after all that, I cannot help you. One gets the impression you are sitting in front of the PC, foaming at the mouth with your fangs out and hair on fire.
    You choose not to answer but to insult. Do you really know what you are claiming?

    Perhaps ask yourself why a low end DSLR produces better images across all ISO's than a Sony DSC-F828?
    This is totally irrelevant to your claim. If you can pull this out I can see how desperate you are to avoid the topic.

    The final image depends on the processing circuitry and algorithms other than the output from the sensor. You have to prove beyond doubt that the sensor captures greater dynamic range in the first place.

    You are the one making a claim. Show conclusive proof(not analogies nor irrelevant examples) of it, or otherwise acknowledge that its just an assumption.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zerstorer
    You are the one making a claim. Show conclusive proof(not analogies nor irrelevant examples) of it, or otherwise acknowledge that its just an assumption.
    Listen, I can't be bothered with you any more. If you want me to demonstrate proof, of course I can. But you need to make it worthwhile for me. If I can demonstrate proof, will you run naked around the Merlion and have pictures posted up on Clubsnap?

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