Sizes of lenses from different brands.


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Fezqu

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May 9, 2011
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#1
Hi guys, i have a question. I know that with larger sensors, the lens will also be bigger. Like those on Sony nex will be bigger than M4/3's lens.

But, how come lenses from Leica's camera can be as small as those from M4/3? Despite the Leica M9 being a full frame camera, their lens is incredibly small and compact than NEX's smaller sensor and lens. Couldn't find any answer from google. Hope the pros here can enlighten me. ^^
 

Fezqu

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May 9, 2011
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#3
Hmm, your link doesn't work.

So why Sony didn't design a system Mount that will enable it to mount smaller lens? I mean afterall leica m9 has got full frame sensor and their lenses is far smaller than those for NEX, which look kinda ugly. Or maybe the design for a rangefinder camera allow it for small lens?
 

pinholecam

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Jul 23, 2007
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#4
Sensor size and with that the image circle needed to be cast by the lens (eg. u4/3 lenses and APS-C lenses)
As you already know smaller sensor, smaller image circle needed, therefore smaller lens diameter needed. Related optics can be designed smaller too.

Registration distance (eg. Rangefinders and SLR)
Without the need for a mirror, a rangefinder or EVIL camera has a shorter registration distance between lens and sensor plane. The optics can be designed smaller.

Philosophy
Some companies believe in big lenses.
Some have not come up with much lenses designed for APS-C (ie. smaller sensor size to FF 35mm).
There is a trade off between size/weigh/lens speed/performance and each brand will be guided by its own design and marketing philosophy
Look at the Pentax DA and FA limited series of lenses and you will see that not all brands design lenses big. In fact most of the DA series of lenses designed for digital are smaller than counterparts of other brands.
Even Samsung seems to design smaller lenses with their 30mm f2.
 

Octarine

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Jan 3, 2008
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#5
And many systems have a weight belt of legacy. Nikon cameras can still mount lenses made 25 years ago. Canon made the drastic switch when coming from manual FD mount to electronic EF mount, still it was in the era of film, before 1990. Sony took over Konica Minolta camera department. Leica has a huge range of highly regarded lenses. Changing the lens mount will render a lot of old lenses useless and will massively upset the owners of these systems. That's why companies come up with new camera systems for the smaller lens mounts. It's not a replacement, it's a compliment. Chose what fits your bill (or hand).
 

J-Chan

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Sep 21, 2005
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#6
I think you are referring to Sony E-Mount zooms and comparing them with rangefinder primes? Sony's 16mm f/2.8 is comparable in size to an eq M-mount 28mm f/2.8 I find.
 

Fezqu

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May 9, 2011
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#7
Right. My concern is mainly is for compact camera. Like the NEX series. Cause it seems that there are people complaining about the huge size of E mount lenses. Maybe it's like what pinholecame said, some companies believe in bigger lens.

If I'm not wrong fuji x100 23mm fixed lens is smaller than Sony's 16mm. Maybe it's fixed so It can be small. I think nex is a good camera. But their lens is so massive.
 

Edwin Francis

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Mar 24, 2006
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#8
But, how come lenses from Leica's camera can be as small as those from M4/3? Despite the Leica M9 being a full frame camera, their lens is incredibly small and compact than NEX's smaller sensor and lens. Couldn't find any answer from google. Hope the pros here can enlighten me. ^^
Sensor size (and therefore required image circle) is one factor in the overall lens size. Rangefinder lenses like Leica's also benefit from having no auto-diaphragm mechanism. Modern lenses are also saddled with the burden of motors (AF, IS and diaphragm). It adds up.
 

Fezqu

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May 9, 2011
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#9
hmm, it all seems pretty clear to me now. Thanks for all the explanations!
 

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