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APS-C vs full vs 35 vs 6.45 vs 6x7 vs 4x5 vs 8x10

Discussion in 'General Photography Discussion' started by MurrayMinchin, Dec 6, 2017 at 3:19 PM.

  1. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Well-Known Member

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    Don't know if this video has made the rounds here yet, but it's worth a chuckle...and spot on;

     
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  2. Scott Burkett

    Scott Burkett Premium Member

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    This one by Zack has made the rounds a number of times here....but its always good to be reminded to watch it again.

    A great message with a few chuckles built in. Thanks for reminding us of this piece.
     
  3. Narsuitus

    Narsuitus Premium Member

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    "APS-C vs full vs 35 vs 6.45 vs 6x7 vs 4x5 vs 8x10"

    The title of this thread has "full vs 35" in it. Are they not the same?
     
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  4. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Likewise - I have seen it before - but still find it interesting.

    To me you can easily boil that whole debate down to:

    - Bigger sensors are (at least "on paper") necessarily better as they have either greater resolution and/or larger photo sites (so better low light performance)

    - BUT - they also require lenses with a larger image circle - like for like that means the lenses must be bigger, heavier and more expensive

    - The differences are bigger than he makes out. FF is x2 APS-C and x4 compared to m4/3. Those are fairly significant differences. But those differences cut both ways (res/low-light and lens size/cost)

    - He's right that sensor technology has improved substantially - but that's true of all sensors regardless of size. However, if all sensor sizes have improved then the real world advantages of larger sensors (as opposed to the theoretical ones) became increasingly less relevant to many of us and/or many situations. How much resolution do you really need? How often do you shoot in really ow light? Often those smaller/lighter/cheaper lenses become more and more attractive.

    - Net result is that pretty much every camera on the market today is hugely capable. Sure there may be some circumstances where one design beats another. But mostly - for almost everyone almost all of the time - stop worrying about sensor size AND GO OUT AND TAKE MORE PHOTOS!
     
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  5. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Yes they are!
     
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  6. George Komiotis

    George Komiotis AKA Photogeo180

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    It's a never ending comparison.
    For instance, to some people the GFX is Cropped Medium Format...


    ff.JPG
     
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  7. jknights

    jknights Moderator Staff Member

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    Anything smaller than 6x6 is cropped medium format..... depending on you point of view.
    Perception is everything.

    One of my photography teachers thought everything smaller than 5"x4" was small format!
     
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  8. Narsuitus

    Narsuitus Premium Member

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    At one time, 4x5 inches was considered medium format.
     
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  9. jknights

    jknights Moderator Staff Member

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    I remember being scared witless the first time I shot 5x4 and more so 8x10.
    I have only ever shot 5exposures of 8x10. I still have many 5x4 b&w film sheets that I need to scan and remake the images.
     
  10. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Well-Known Member

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    Not for me...full frame means a digital sensor, while 35(mm) is film.

    I used 6x7 (back in the early 80's) but was frustrated at averaging everything with roll film development, so moved to 4x5 where each sheet could be exposed/developed to suit each particular image. Funny thing is, I never enlarged larger than 11x14. So it wasn't necessarily the larger film size which was important, but being able to have total control over each exposure. The digital process allows this in spades.

    With the X-T2 (coming this week!!!) and using a good printer, I should be able to make digital negatives up to 11x14 for platinum/palladium printing that have better detail than the final PT/PD prints...or so I'm hoping. About one years experimentation and experience will prove me right or wrong!
     
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  11. Finder

    Finder Premium Member

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    Only for amateurs in the digital age. Full frame is not a format. It simply means that the entire image area is used. Every one of those are full frame if you use the entire frame. If you crop an image, then you are not using the full frame, whether that is APS or 8x10.
     
  12. Charlie Spaghetti

    Charlie Spaghetti Well-Known Member

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    Glad he mentioned 11X14 INCHES!! My dad (professional photographer) used to shoot on that. 'Everything else is just too small.'
     
  13. royuk

    royuk ex-pro, now a happy amateur

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    Another size he mentioned was 5 x 7. In the UK that was what we called it, even though everyone else's 4 x 5 we stubbornly and inconsistently preferred to call 5 x 4. A least, that's if I can still remember that far back.

    Anyway, I shot most of my architectural jobs on a Sinar P monorail with a 5 x 7 back with Schneider Symmars and Super Angulons. My favourite sheet film was Kodak's ASA 1200 Panchro Royal. (ASA pre-dates ISO) and I printed on a monster Durst enlarger.

    Rolleis and Hassys were for wimps and 35mm never got a look-in.

    Happy days . . until I had the lug the gear to the next job. I blame my bad back on those punishing times!

    Roy :)
     
  14. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Not really. It basically means a digital sensor that is exactly the same size as a single frame (negative) on 35mm film. When digital started the SLR was, by far, the most popular camera for Pros and keen enthusiasts alike. But it was too expensive to produce sensors that size so we had to make do with DSLR's being the same lens mount, taking the same lenses etc, but with a sensor that was half size - so unable to take advantage of the full image circle. Once the production efficiencies were sufficient to allow cost-effective production of the full size/comparative sensor then "full frame" was the stunningly obvious name to use.
     
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  15. Finder

    Finder Premium Member

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    35mm was the format for a 35mm frame. APS-C was originally a film format as well. Full frame was just a term that took off for amateurs to have debates on which system was "better." The image circle of a lens is not relevant.
     
  16. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Firstly there is no debate about which sensor size is better (at least on paper) - not if you have even a basic understanding of the issues anyway. FF is physically twice the size of APS-C. That greater surface area allows for either more photosites (so greater resolution) or bigger photosites (so better low light performance). Possibly even a combination of both. The area for debate is about how much any one Photographer actually needs these (otherwise theoretical) advantages? For example you can easily print 12mp to A3 paper. So you are, in effect, throwing away half of the available resolution even on a new generation 24mp Fuji camera. Scale up to a 48mp FF sensor and you are only getting immediate use out of one quarter of what the sensor is capable of producing.

    Is that useful? Well probably not - but the counter might be that it could be on occasion (e.g. giving a much better ability to crop in post-production). So why not have the extra resolution just in case? Well that's where the image circle absolutely does matter. A bigger sensor requires lenses with a bigger image circle. Again there's no debate here - it just does. To get that bigger image circle you need (comparing like for like lenses) more glass. High grade optical glass is heavy and very expensive. Therefore, the lenses for that bigger sensor need to be bulkier, heavier and a lot more expensive. So any desire for that extra resolution (and/or low-light) capability from the larger sensor carries a big penalty. That's fine only as long as the Photographer actually needs one (or both) of those extra capabilities and is prepared to pay the penalty.

    So sensor size arguments are really just a sign of somebody who doesn't fully understand the trade-offs that are required here.
     
  17. Finder

    Finder Premium Member

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    We are discussing the change in the meaning of the term "Full Frame." It was simply a case of amateurs taking a term that used to describe using the entire frame and redefining it to mean a 35mm format. This was in counter point to the term amateurs can up with "crop frame," used as a pejorative. All of this was simply used on online "debates" trying to rationalize who had the "better" camera. This is where equivalency come into being.
     
  18. MurrayMinchin

    MurrayMinchin Well-Known Member

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    To be honest, I'm not a 'digital photographer' and haven't been following these hotly debated issues at all.

    I bought an X-E1 (to take family photo's and grab snapshots while photographing with the 4X5) when it first came out because I liked its old camera roots and thought the viewfinder showing results from manual adjustments to be brilliant. I'm getting the X-T2 not for digital colour work, but as a tool for making digital negatives for platinum/palladium prints. I've read reports claiming technology has advanced to the point where digital negatives can be made with more detail than PT/PD prints can reveal...so I'm in! (Other factors are that as I near the age of 60, dragging my 4X5 gear through the north coast BC rainforests and into the mountains is getting harder, taking large format photo's from our boat is impossible, and LF gear isn't the best for wildlife).

    To the sensor/size debate...what about the fact that most full frame (35mm film camera sized) digital sensors have low pass filters, and the Fujifilm sensors do not. Wouldn't the low pass filter bring down the quality of the larger sensor images? Wouldn't this "level the playing field" somewhat?
     
  19. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Sorry but this just isn't true. The term Full Frame was invented by the camera manufacturers. I accept crop frame may have a small amount of pejorative about it - but less so than your (completely incorrect) use of the word amateur as a pejorative.
     
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  20. GregWard

    GregWard Premium Member

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    Possibly but actually most of the higher resolution FF cameras also don't have an AA filter. You are, of course, right that a camera with an AA filter has a deliberate "blurring" effect (on the D800 vs 800e this was maybe 5-10%?). So an FF with AA filter would be a bit closer to an APS-C without one. But conversely you could compare an FF without and an APS-C with. Even more importantly a FF from (say) 3 generations ago may be much closer to a brand new APS-C. Clearly you do need to be comparing like with like.

    To be honest all sensor sizes have improved to such an extent that most people really don't need to worry. Fuji X - and also m4/3 - take perfectly decent pictures in almost all situations. That's why I keep stressing that the theoretical advantages of a larger sensor do not always translate into a useable advantage. But the advantages of the smaller sensor are much more likely to be useful as they give us smaller/lighter/cheaper lenses. Though again - only when comparing like with like.
     

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