Rethinking 4/3 Depth Of Field

Started Apr 11, 2013 | Discussions
RoelHendrickx
Forum ProPosts: 21,994
Like?
I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to Hen3ry, Apr 12, 2013

Hen3ry wrote:

Super thin depth of field is a choice. Those who want it can have it; I'm not interested and mostly I'm not interested in their pictures either. Very thin DoF moved from the innovative to the boringly banal in a remarkably short time 40+ years ago.

Geoff, I may respond later to some other interesting points you make, but I just wanted to illustrate that seriously thin DOF can also be done on (micro-)FourThirds and it does not even have to be expensive.  I sometimes enjoy the look.

This one was shot with the pretty cheap Rokinon 85mm F1.4 in native FT mount:

1/4000 at F1.4 on 85mm - I did not have an ND filter with me...

FT-users just have to be a bit more creative and resourceful in their composition (distance to subject and distance from subject to background) than FF-users, when they do want to use the shallow DOF -effect.

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

EDIT: embedding seems not to work (again), so here is just the link to the image to be safe:

http://roelh.zenfolio.com/p56790202/h435a8108#h435a8108

(There are a few more in that gallery - I was in a shallow mood that day.)

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: www.roelh.zenfolio.com
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Great Bustard
Forum ProPosts: 22,375
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 12, 2013

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
RoelHendrickx
Forum ProPosts: 21,994
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

There used to be a time when a person would be called "the hardest working man in show business".

Well, FT-users are the hardest working men in photography (if they want shallow DOF).

We may be stupid, but we are proud of doing things the hard way.

(BTW, I just bought a 17.5mm Nokton, so expect to be pestered with some shallow DOF µFT-shots soon.)

PS: did the photo show up on your system? Not here.  The site's embedding tool seems to be screwed (again).  I included a link to the gallery.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: www.roelh.zenfolio.com
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Great Bustard
Forum ProPosts: 22,375
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 12, 2013

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

There used to be a time when a person would be called "the hardest working man in show business".

Well, FT-users are the hardest working men in photography (if they want shallow DOF).

We may be stupid, but we are proud of doing things the hard way.

If you want to do things the hard way, give up that sensor and IBIS in the EM5, and go get a film rangefinder. 

(BTW, I just bought a 17.5mm Nokton, so expect to be pestered with some shallow DOF µFT-shots soon.)

PS: did the photo show up on your system? Not here.  The site's embedding tool seems to be screwed (again).  I included a link to the gallery.

No, the photo did not embed.  If I were you, I'd edit out that bright yellow rectangle, as it's a huge distraction.  The reason I know is that I've had to do the same thing in more than one of my photos. 

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
RoelHendrickx
Forum ProPosts: 21,994
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

There used to be a time when a person would be called "the hardest working man in show business".

Well, FT-users are the hardest working men in photography (if they want shallow DOF).

We may be stupid, but we are proud of doing things the hard way.

If you want to do things the hard way, give up that sensor and IBIS in the EM5, and go get a film rangefinder. 

I might just do that, someday.

(I am test-driving a Leica M3 that someone found on his attic, to make sure it still works properly.  It does, but my shots from the one roll of film are rubbish.  If I would buy that camera off the person, it would be gathering dust on my shelf, so I won't.)

(BTW, I just bought a 17.5mm Nokton, so expect to be pestered with some shallow DOF µFT-shots soon.)

PS: did the photo show up on your system? Not here.  The site's embedding tool seems to be screwed (again).  I included a link to the gallery.

No, the photo did not embed.  If I were you, I'd edit out that bright yellow rectangle, as it's a huge distraction.  The reason I know is that I've had to do the same thing in more than one of my photos. 

I know what you mean, and aesthetically you are right, but I am too much of a documentary guy  to do that.  That is my high-horse motivation.  The real reason is I am too lousy at PP.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: www.roelh.zenfolio.com
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Great Bustard
Forum ProPosts: 22,375
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 12, 2013

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

There used to be a time when a person would be called "the hardest working man in show business".

Well, FT-users are the hardest working men in photography (if they want shallow DOF).

We may be stupid, but we are proud of doing things the hard way.

If you want to do things the hard way, give up that sensor and IBIS in the EM5, and go get a film rangefinder. 

I might just do that, someday.

(I am test-driving a Leica M3 that someone found on his attic, to make sure it still works properly.  It does, but my shots from the one roll of film are rubbish.  If I would buy that camera off the person, it would be gathering dust on my shelf, so I won't.)

Ask if he'll give it to you for free, then send it to me!

(BTW, I just bought a 17.5mm Nokton, so expect to be pestered with some shallow DOF µFT-shots soon.)

PS: did the photo show up on your system? Not here.  The site's embedding tool seems to be screwed (again).  I included a link to the gallery.

No, the photo did not embed.  If I were you, I'd edit out that bright yellow rectangle, as it's a huge distraction.  The reason I know is that I've had to do the same thing in more than one of my photos. 

I know what you mean, and aesthetically you are right, but I am too much of a documentary guy  to do that.  That is my high-horse motivation.  The real reason is I am too lousy at PP.

Maybe just desaturate it a bit, then?

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
RoelHendrickx
Forum ProPosts: 21,994
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

So actually, Great Bustard is a lazy bum because he uses gear that is easy for what he likes!

(just kidding, Joe!)

I guess I missed the joke -- all I saw was a simple statement of fact. 

There used to be a time when a person would be called "the hardest working man in show business".

Well, FT-users are the hardest working men in photography (if they want shallow DOF).

We may be stupid, but we are proud of doing things the hard way.

If you want to do things the hard way, give up that sensor and IBIS in the EM5, and go get a film rangefinder. 

I might just do that, someday.

(I am test-driving a Leica M3 that someone found on his attic, to make sure it still works properly.  It does, but my shots from the one roll of film are rubbish.  If I would buy that camera off the person, it would be gathering dust on my shelf, so I won't.)

Ask if he'll give it to you for free, then send it to me!

I gave a little hint about the "for-free" thingy ("If you don't find a decent and loving home for it, ..."), but my friend is aware of the real value and I think she is going to sell it, because it does not hold emotional value for her.  And I can't blame her.

And I would feel totally bad if I would not have told her the truth, which is that the camera is a real and probably pretty rare beauty, in perfect working condition (as far as I can tell) with a decent if not spectacular lens, that will probably catch a nice price when sold in the right place (NOT a pawn shop or thrift store).

When she comes to collect it back from me, I will send her to a specialized dealer for further help, with the advice not to let the dealer himself take it off her for not enough money.

I have enjoyed the experience, but in an archeologist's spirit...

(BTW, I just bought a 17.5mm Nokton, so expect to be pestered with some shallow DOF µFT-shots soon.)

PS: did the photo show up on your system? Not here.  The site's embedding tool seems to be screwed (again).  I included a link to the gallery.

No, the photo did not embed.  If I were you, I'd edit out that bright yellow rectangle, as it's a huge distraction.  The reason I know is that I've had to do the same thing in more than one of my photos. 

I know what you mean, and aesthetically you are right, but I am too much of a documentary guy  to do that.  That is my high-horse motivation.  The real reason is I am too lousy at PP.

Maybe just desaturate it a bit, then?

Good idea.  Now if only I ever went back to images that I consider "done".  I'll keep it in mind for the next time around.

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: www.roelh.zenfolio.com
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
aljudy
Regular MemberPosts: 466Gear list
Like?
Re: Rethinking 4/3 Depth Of Field
In reply to al_in_philly, Apr 12, 2013

You are obviously fascinated (passionately about) B&W photography. While my post is not related to your wonderful post about DOF, I would like to hear your reasons for this B&W focus that I see in your Flickr photos, and what is it about B&W vs color that makes you choose B&W apparently all the time. Have you considered the Monochrome camera by Leica?  Al

-- hide signature --

Amateur Photographer of family mainly

 aljudy's gear list:aljudy's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Panasonic Leica D Summilux Asph 25mm F1.4 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4-5.6 OIS Panasonic 12-35mm F2.8 +5 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Anders W
Forum ProPosts: 17,051Gear list
Like?
Re: Lovely pix and excellent presentation of your argument
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

Anders W wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

Hen3ry wrote:

And my argument if it comes to that.

Razor thin depth of field is a by-product, an artifact of big apertures. They allow you to shoot in lower light but more often than not, the very shallow DoF is a damned nuisance.

For me, shallow DOF is the bomb, and I'm wide open, more often than not, regardless of the light.  That said, I don't expect others to have my tastes, but it's not like I never stop down:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/39537128

Besides, and editor might use one or two thin depth of field shots in a publication, but s/he certainly didn’t want page after page of them -- they were showing what the world looked like, not some arty-farty extract of the world governed by a super large aperture.

Well, a modern compact, like the RX100 might be better still for many, and DPR has been showcasing many pros making good use of cell phones for published works.

Then the argument was switched around so that razor thin DoF was practically the raison d'etre for taking a picture. Of course, you had to have the most expensive lens to achieve it so ordinary mortals were excluded.

There are quite a few fast primes for FF that aren't particularly expensive:  35 / 2, 50 / 1.8, 50 / 1.4, 85 / 1.8, 100 / 2.

On the other hand, many of those that aren't particularly expensive aren't very good wide open and thereabout. I am not saying that exceptions do not exist, but they are hardly frequent. Most of the fast Oly & Pany MFT primes, by contrast, do very well already from the get-go, and at least some of them are quite affordable too (20/1.7, 45/1.8).

Well, I guess it depends on what you mean by "aren't very good wide open" -- I found the 50 / 1.4:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/34489299

85 / 1.8:

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/34631434

and 100 / 2:

http://www.josephjamesphotography.com/lenses/100f2/

more than "good enough", although that's not to say that I would not be against paying more for better still.  Indeed, I paid a lot more for the 50 / 1.2L:

http://www.josephjamesphotography.com/lenses/50L/

but I have to wonder how many, if anyone, appreciates the difference.

My definition of "not very good" is something like "significantly worse than peak performance". Most MFT lenses are just marginally worse wide open than at peak, which they typically reach at f/4 in the center and at f/4 or f/5.6 at the edges. Since I want to use the really wide apertures far more often with MFT, due to the DoF "bonus", this is a blessing (and one of the things that convinced me to take the plunge).

 Anders W's gear list:Anders W's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH +21 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Anders W
Forum ProPosts: 17,051Gear list
Like?
Re: I'm not convinced...
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

Anders W wrote:

I had a go at something like that here (click on "show signature" to see the entire post; I made a mistake of including a dashed line and ... ).

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/50462878

Not saying that's ideal in all regards but that was what I could manage.

Well, based on those samples, the EM5 has the clear edge.

For my personal/wants needs, there aren't a whole lot of pictures that would benefit from (or "tolerate") much less DoF than I get when I shoot my fast MFT primes (12/2, 20/1.7, 45/1.8, 75/1.8) wide open, although as you know I am less fond of background blur with very fast WAs than you are. That said, exceptions do of course exist. See example below.

Ironically, I think shallow DOF with UWA is "da bomb":

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/38116367

Yes, I know. I think you are an excellent photographer and you generally have stylistic ideals that I think are close to my own, but the shallow DoF effect does not work for me in most of those images although there might be a few exceptions.

To that end, I think it would be interesting to see a comparison with competently processed photos.

P.S.:  I think the EM5 would come out significantly ahead in situations where it could use IBIS and a longer shutter speed and FF could not use a tripod.

And, yes, don't forget the awesome IBIS in the EM5.

I am not since I strongly appreciate it. In all fairness though, you can get IBIS with FF too if you get yourself an A99 (although I am not sure whether the efficiency matches that of the E-M5). And below is an example of an image that we have discussed before where an FF-camera with IBIS would beat the E-M5 with IBIS. As you can see, this is with the 12 mm at f/2 and 0.4 s. But the scene is sufficiently far away that one could have used a 24/1.4 on FF and still have sufficient DoF.

Thing is, though, that at such wide apertures, the corners suffer.  So, for low light wide aperture photography where corners matter (e.g. astrophotography), FF still has ample room for improvement.

That might be the case yes. Another serious consideration in some cases might be vignetting. Although the Canikon fast 24s are pretty impressive for what they manage even wide open if I recall correctly, particularly since f/1.4 at that FL must be really challenging in terms of lens design.

And no, tripod-friends, a tripod would not have helped here. I was standing on a staircase that was constantly vibrating due to the traffic on the bridge to which it was connected.

 Anders W's gear list:Anders W's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH +21 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
RoelHendrickx
Forum ProPosts: 21,994
Like?
Off Topic : what B&W does.
In reply to aljudy, Apr 12, 2013

aljudy wrote:

You are obviously fascinated (passionately about) B&W photography. While my post is not related to your wonderful post about DOF, I would like to hear your reasons for this B&W focus that I see in your Flickr photos, and what is it about B&W vs color that makes you choose B&W apparently all the time. Have you considered the Monochrome camera by Leica?  Al

I hope that Al-in-Philly answers your question.

it is always interesting to read a person's motivation for B&W (apart from the obvious reason that it looks classy, classic and cerebrally cultural - which BTW is a valid reason...).

Looking at the shots in the OP, for me the reasons for B&W are obvious: having no colour helps (with the shallow DOF) to make the in-focus subject stand out from the background, in almost all images, because potentially distracting bright or contrasting colours are cancelled out.

Plus, obviously, B&W makes textures stand out, while in colour, the colour information dominates our vision.

This photo of mine would not have been the same in colour, because the patterns are the most important thing.  The colour scheme of the coat is a bit different from the colour scheme of the chairs (true black and true white versus a shade of beige on very dark brown).  Only in B&W can I enhance the impression of the woman being an urban chameleon :

link in case embedding is screwed up again: http://roelh.zenfolio.com/p187119431/h514be762#h514be762

-- hide signature --

Roel Hendrickx
lots of images: www.roelh.zenfolio.com
my E-3 user field report from Tunisian Sahara: http://www.biofos.com/ukpsg/roel.html

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Anders W
Forum ProPosts: 17,051Gear list
Like?
Re: Rethinking 4/3 Depth Of Field
In reply to olliess, Apr 12, 2013

olliess wrote:

Anders W wrote:

exdeejjjaaaa wrote:

Anders W wrote:

At high ISOs, which is what the OP was talking about, the E-M5 set at two stops lower ISO than the FF camera (for equal DoF), will go equal for SNR at midtones but do better with regard to shadow noise/DR in comparison with all current FF cameras except the D4 (where it will be a tie).

it is soundly beaten by DR @ high ISO even by Canon (1Dx).

Please read what both the OP and I were actually talking about. With the E-M5 at ISO 3200 and the 1Dx at ISO 12800 for equal DoF, the E-M5 will come out slightly ahead.

From the DxO measurements that doesn't look to be the case for DR between the 1Dx and the E-M5. Interestingly it looks as if the 1Dx beats out the D4 slightly in DR above ISO 2200 or so..

Yes, you are right. I was too quick when checking the graph. So the D4, 6D, and 1Dx belong to the group that ties with the E-M5, when the E-M5 can shoot at two stops lower ISO for equal DoF. The D800, D600, 5D3, and A99 belong to the group that the E-M5 beats.

 Anders W's gear list:Anders W's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH +21 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
zxaar
Veteran MemberPosts: 3,249
Like?
Re: Rethinking 4/3 Depth Of Field
In reply to Anders W, Apr 12, 2013

Anders W wrote:

olliess wrote:

Anders W wrote:

exdeejjjaaaa wrote:

Anders W wrote:

At high ISOs, which is what the OP was talking about, the E-M5 set at two stops lower ISO than the FF camera (for equal DoF), will go equal for SNR at midtones but do better with regard to shadow noise/DR in comparison with all current FF cameras except the D4 (where it will be a tie).

it is soundly beaten by DR @ high ISO even by Canon (1Dx).

Please read what both the OP and I were actually talking about. With the E-M5 at ISO 3200 and the 1Dx at ISO 12800 for equal DoF, the E-M5 will come out slightly ahead.

From the DxO measurements that doesn't look to be the case for DR between the 1Dx and the E-M5. Interestingly it looks as if the 1Dx beats out the D4 slightly in DR above ISO 2200 or so..

Yes, you are right. I was too quick when checking the graph. So the D4, 6D, and 1Dx belong to the group that ties with the E-M5, when the E-M5 can shoot at two stops lower ISO for equal DoF. The D800, D600, 5D3, and A99 belong to the group that the E-M5 beats.

in practice it does not really matter. The FF shooter does not always have to shoot at the DOF that omd would be shooting. If smaller sensor is the one deciding on dof then I would advise the omd users to first shoot with cell phone then calculate equivalent F number based on dof and shoot accordingly. So you are holding a larger sensor camera then it is irrelevant what the smaller sensor camera would be doing there.

Further if someone is always looking for deepest dof , he shall be better with pentax q type system, omd does not have small enough sensor for that.

-- hide signature --

::> I make spelling mistakes. May Dog forgive me for this.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
MatsP
Contributing MemberPosts: 869Gear list
Like?
Re: I can already predict a response.
In reply to danijel973, Apr 12, 2013

exdeejjjaaaa wrote:

danijel973 wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

I can already predict a response by some people likely to chime in here.

They will say that having shallow DOF at one's disposal is never a disadvantage, because if deeper DOF is desired, the aperture can always be stopped down a bit (while it cannot be "stopped up" to make the DOF more shallow than the lens wide-open on the sensor will allow).

Except when you stop down to have similar DoF you're no longer at f/2.8, you're at f/5.6, and then you push ISO up two stops to compensate for speed loss and suddenly you wonder where your "two stop advantage at high ISO" went.

except that in many cases you do not really need exactly the same DOF as you are forced in w/ m43/43 and then you do not need to push ISO 2 stops... so what you are saying is an artificial condition.

What I'm saying is that sometimes 43 might be exactly what you need - f/1.4 aperture to let more light in and still to have 2 stops more DoF than you would have with 35mm. For situations where you need to work in low light and not have hair-thin DoF, this is exactly what you want.

35mm practically forces you to use very thin DoF when shooting in low light, and if that's what you like, but if it's not, stopping down is possible but very expensive in terms of shutter speed. So "you just stop down" argument is quite dubious. Personally, although I prefer 35mm for most purposes, I know how costly it is to have to stop down in the dark because you need more DoF. Also, I know how annoying is not being able to shoot landscapes handheld with 35mm because at f/5.6, which is most you can afford at times, you just don't get enough DoF to make a usable shot. I usually shoot handheld landscapes at f/10 or f/11 with 5d and 17-40mm, to get it properly sharp, and getting enough light can be tricky. With 43, I could pull it off with f/5.6 with same depth, and this can be hugely important.

Interesting. I remember film days when shooting architecture with a Hasselblad. F 16 or 22 was necessary to get enough dof, so tripod and long shutter time was needed on most cases. With m4/3 (or APS) you do it handheld. Maybe a somewhat unfair comparison regarding the final result though.

 MatsP's gear list:MatsP's gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Olympus 12-40mm F2.8 Canon Pixma MG8150 DxO Optics Pro Standard +1 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
danijel973
Contributing MemberPosts: 639Gear list
Like?
Re: I can already predict a response.
In reply to exdeejjjaaaa, Apr 12, 2013

exdeejjjaaaa wrote:

35mm practically forces you to use very thin DoF when shooting in low light

no, it does not... that is only happening in your imagination.

I don't know how to answer this except by stating the obvious, which is that you never used a 35mm camera and you are completely ignorant.

 danijel973's gear list:danijel973's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Olympus PEN E-PL1 Canon EF 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0L USM +12 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
danijel973
Contributing MemberPosts: 639Gear list
Like?
Re: I can already predict a response.
In reply to MatsP, Apr 12, 2013

MatsP wrote:

exdeejjjaaaa wrote:

danijel973 wrote:

RoelHendrickx wrote:

I can already predict a response by some people likely to chime in here.

They will say that having shallow DOF at one's disposal is never a disadvantage, because if deeper DOF is desired, the aperture can always be stopped down a bit (while it cannot be "stopped up" to make the DOF more shallow than the lens wide-open on the sensor will allow).

Except when you stop down to have similar DoF you're no longer at f/2.8, you're at f/5.6, and then you push ISO up two stops to compensate for speed loss and suddenly you wonder where your "two stop advantage at high ISO" went.

except that in many cases you do not really need exactly the same DOF as you are forced in w/ m43/43 and then you do not need to push ISO 2 stops... so what you are saying is an artificial condition.

What I'm saying is that sometimes 43 might be exactly what you need - f/1.4 aperture to let more light in and still to have 2 stops more DoF than you would have with 35mm. For situations where you need to work in low light and not have hair-thin DoF, this is exactly what you want.

35mm practically forces you to use very thin DoF when shooting in low light, and if that's what you like, but if it's not, stopping down is possible but very expensive in terms of shutter speed. So "you just stop down" argument is quite dubious. Personally, although I prefer 35mm for most purposes, I know how costly it is to have to stop down in the dark because you need more DoF. Also, I know how annoying is not being able to shoot landscapes handheld with 35mm because at f/5.6, which is most you can afford at times, you just don't get enough DoF to make a usable shot. I usually shoot handheld landscapes at f/10 or f/11 with 5d and 17-40mm, to get it properly sharp, and getting enough light can be tricky. With 43, I could pull it off with f/5.6 with same depth, and this can be hugely important.

Interesting. I remember film days when shooting architecture with a Hasselblad. F 16 or 22 was necessary to get enough dof, so tripod and long shutter time was needed on most cases.

Exactly. My experience is that 35mm is essentially better for landscapes if you use a tripod and stop down to at least f/11; I actually prefer f/16 for near-far compositions. However, 43 allows me to use f/5.6 up to f/8 and shoot handheld, and still get enough depth. This is a significant advantage for handheld shooting.

With m4/3 (or APS) you do it handheld. Maybe a somewhat unfair comparison regarding the final result though.

What do you mean? I don't think there's much difference in the final result between 35mm and 43 if you get everything right. What I'm saying is that "getting everything right" isn't the same thing for those two; sometimes it's easier with one, and sometimes with the other.

 danijel973's gear list:danijel973's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Olympus PEN E-PL1 Canon EF 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0L USM +12 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
danijel973
Contributing MemberPosts: 639Gear list
Like?
Re: I can already predict a response.
In reply to danijel973, Apr 12, 2013

danijel973 wrote:

With m4/3 (or APS) you do it handheld. Maybe a somewhat unfair comparison regarding the final result though.

What do you mean? I don't think there's much difference in the final result between 35mm and 43 if you get everything right. What I'm saying is that "getting everything right" isn't the same thing for those two; sometimes it's easier with one, and sometimes with the other.

If you mean comparing a 35mm tripod shot with a 43/APS handheld shot, I agree it would be unfair to compare those results, but I was thinking more in line of comparing a 35mm handheld shot which you can't get and a 43 handheld shot which you can get. Of course, I agree that it's better to use a tripod than to shoot landscapes handheld but sometimes you don't really have that option.

 danijel973's gear list:danijel973's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Olympus PEN E-PL1 Canon EF 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0L USM +12 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
tt321
Senior MemberPosts: 3,183Gear list
Like?
Re: I'm not convinced...
In reply to Great Bustard, Apr 12, 2013

Great Bustard wrote:

tt321 wrote:

Great Bustard wrote:

P.S.:  I think the EM5 would come out significantly ahead in situations where it could use IBIS and a longer shutter speed and FF could not use a tripod.

You should be able to get a similar degree of IS with an IS-capable 24-70/2.8.

Sure, and that's one of the nice advantages of FF -- where mFT would require a prime (25 / 1.4, in this case), FF could use a zoom (e.g. Tamron 24-70 / 2.8 VC).  The question, then, is how FF would fare with the zoom wide open compared to mFT with the prime wide open.

The Tamron would lose the contest, as far as centre resolution is concerned, according to Lenstip, but mid-range oddly is the weakest point for that zoom so it's probably abnormal among this type of zooms.

Another issue is that FF lenses tend to peak earlier (e.g. f5.6) than M43 ones (mostly f4) in terms of DoF. So if you require the kind of DoF which a wide open M43 gives you then FF wins (apart from when comparing a prime to a zoom, perhaps) but if you require the kind of DoF provided by f8 on FF then maybe the advantage is with M43. So the FF and M43 political parties could argue with ever finer distinctions of 'DoF control' and cherry pick whatever precise example that fits their own agenda ...

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Hen3ry
Senior MemberPosts: 8,717Gear list
Like?
Re: I like shallow DOF occasionally, and it can be done cheap on FT...
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Apr 12, 2013

Look at the pair of you -- Roel & Bustard, like the old Pat & Mike comedy acts.

Okay, Bustard, you miss a point I was trying to make: the very bright lenses I was referring too which cost a fortune -- that was back in the day, the 60s and 70s, even into the 80s. They are cheap now, comparatively.

The point was the ability to get good focus manually was dependent on having a bright lens on an SLR so they were in big demand -- but not necessarily to actually take the picture.

Roel -- nice shot with the kid on the bike but did you miss the more dramatic one when he fell off? Tram tracks are a Melbourne feature -- lots of us who grew up here klnow al about getting the bike wheels (and later the motorbike wheels) in the tram tracks. We carry the scars!!!

But that's not the razor thin DoF I was talking about, I suppose. I was thinking more of those portraits with one eye in focus and the rest of the face a blobby fudge. Yuck.

Cheers, geoff

 Hen3ry's gear list:Hen3ry's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm 1:4.0-5.6 Panasonic Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH Panasonic Lumix G Vario 100-300mm F4-5.6 OIS Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8 +5 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Michael J Davis
Senior MemberPosts: 2,426Gear list
Like?
I'm thinking of topping myself....
In reply to al_in_philly, Apr 12, 2013

...yet another DoF thread & more nonsense!

... I expect!

Mike

-- hide signature --

Mike Davis
Photographing the public for over 50 years
www.flickr.com/photos/watchman

 Michael J Davis's gear list:Michael J Davis's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 14-45mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH +2 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads