Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?

Started Jul 25, 2013 | Discussions
wymjym
Veteran MemberPosts: 5,366
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to Futax, Jul 26, 2013

Futax wrote:

 A real TC won't affect the shake issue either (assuming it hasn't affected aperture value or light transmission), you just need to trade off the resolution/noise advantage versus image degradation due to optical limitations.

Paul Till makes a good point that digital zoom can help getting the correct focus. However, it can also work against getting the right composition, if the image on the screen or in the viewfinder is bouncing around a bit. In these situations cropping allows you to get the best composition at your leisure.

In conclusion, I don't think there's much to choose between digital zoom or cropping, really. But if you're using digital zoom and finding it difficult to keep the camera steady enough to get the right composition, don't be afraid to use the cropping route...

A 'real' tc will always add (numerically) to the aperture value and light transmission.

the bouncing syndrome might be considered a visual warning to the user, showing that in fact..they are not supporting the camera as well as needed, thus adding unwanted motion blur.

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Futax
Regular MemberPosts: 309Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to wymjym, Jul 26, 2013

wymjym wrote:

Futax wrote:

A real TC won't affect the shake issue either (assuming it hasn't affected aperture value or light transmission), you just need to trade off the resolution/noise advantage versus image degradation due to optical limitations.

Paul Till makes a good point that digital zoom can help getting the correct focus. However, it can also work against getting the right composition, if the image on the screen or in the viewfinder is bouncing around a bit. In these situations cropping allows you to get the best composition at your leisure.

In conclusion, I don't think there's much to choose between digital zoom or cropping, really. But if you're using digital zoom and finding it difficult to keep the camera steady enough to get the right composition, don't be afraid to use the cropping route...

A 'real' tc will always add (numerically) to the aperture value and light transmission.

the bouncing syndrome might be considered a visual warning to the user, showing that in fact..they are not supporting the camera as well as needed, thus adding unwanted motion blur.

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

Well, the sort of teleconverter which screws onto the front end of the camera lens won't affect aperture value (i.e. f-stop), but there may be a very small loss of light through the extra glass.

The sort of teleconverter which you'd normally use with an SLR attaches to the camera end of the lens, and does indeed affect f-stop.  In fact, a 2x TC multiplies the f-stop by 2, so f4 becomes f8.  Not very nice!

 Futax's gear list:Futax's gear list
Sigma DP1 Fujifilm FinePix F70EXR Sigma DP2 Merrill Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Panasonic Lumix DMC-XS1 +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
wymjym
Veteran MemberPosts: 5,366
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to Futax, Jul 26, 2013

Futax wrote:

wymjym wrote:

Futax wrote:

A real TC won't affect the shake issue either (assuming it hasn't affected aperture value or light transmission), you just need to trade off the resolution/noise advantage versus image degradation due to optical limitations.

Paul Till makes a good point that digital zoom can help getting the correct focus. However, it can also work against getting the right composition, if the image on the screen or in the viewfinder is bouncing around a bit. In these situations cropping allows you to get the best composition at your leisure.

In conclusion, I don't think there's much to choose between digital zoom or cropping, really. But if you're using digital zoom and finding it difficult to keep the camera steady enough to get the right composition, don't be afraid to use the cropping route...

A 'real' tc will always add (numerically) to the aperture value and light transmission.

the bouncing syndrome might be considered a visual warning to the user, showing that in fact..they are not supporting the camera as well as needed, thus adding unwanted motion blur.

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

Well, the sort of teleconverter which screws onto the front end of the camera lens won't affect aperture value (i.e. f-stop), but there may be a very small loss of light through the extra glass.

The sort of teleconverter which you'd normally use with an SLR attaches to the camera end of the lens, and does indeed affect f-stop. In fact, a 2x TC multiplies the f-stop by 2, so f4 becomes f8. Not very nice!

sorry, my bad...didn't consider a front screw on unit.......

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Futax
Regular MemberPosts: 309Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to wymjym, Jul 26, 2013

wymjym wrote:

Futax wrote:

wymjym wrote:

Futax wrote:

A real TC won't affect the shake issue either (assuming it hasn't affected aperture value or light transmission), you just need to trade off the resolution/noise advantage versus image degradation due to optical limitations.

Paul Till makes a good point that digital zoom can help getting the correct focus. However, it can also work against getting the right composition, if the image on the screen or in the viewfinder is bouncing around a bit. In these situations cropping allows you to get the best composition at your leisure.

In conclusion, I don't think there's much to choose between digital zoom or cropping, really. But if you're using digital zoom and finding it difficult to keep the camera steady enough to get the right composition, don't be afraid to use the cropping route...

A 'real' tc will always add (numerically) to the aperture value and light transmission.

the bouncing syndrome might be considered a visual warning to the user, showing that in fact..they are not supporting the camera as well as needed, thus adding unwanted motion blur.

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

Well, the sort of teleconverter which screws onto the front end of the camera lens won't affect aperture value (i.e. f-stop), but there may be a very small loss of light through the extra glass.

The sort of teleconverter which you'd normally use with an SLR attaches to the camera end of the lens, and does indeed affect f-stop. In fact, a 2x TC multiplies the f-stop by 2, so f4 becomes f8. Not very nice!

sorry, my bad...didn't consider a front screw on unit.......

wj

-- hide signature --

nikonfujipentaxandricoh

No worries!

 Futax's gear list:Futax's gear list
Sigma DP1 Fujifilm FinePix F70EXR Sigma DP2 Merrill Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Panasonic Lumix DMC-XS1 +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
bssfujifan
Forum MemberPosts: 59Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to Futax, Jul 26, 2013

I'm glad my question has prompted so many informative responses. Thank you all.

 bssfujifan's gear list:bssfujifan's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX07 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 +2 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Nukunukoo
Regular MemberPosts: 353Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to bssfujifan, Jul 26, 2013

Yes

 Nukunukoo's gear list:Nukunukoo's gear list
Fujifilm X20 Nikon D300S Nikon D800E Nikon D7100 Sigma 50-150mm F2.8 EX DC APO OS HSM +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
herbiecook
Regular MemberPosts: 494Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to Nukunukoo, Jul 26, 2013

I have used it many times.  My Fn button is programed with it.  Note: At my age when I am using max telephoto and digital zoom, I use a tripod or some type of support.

 herbiecook's gear list:herbiecook's gear list
Nikon D600
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
CAcreeks
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,836
Like?
Usually I am surprised by results
In reply to bssfujifan, Jul 27, 2013

Whenever someone posts a "digital zoom" example on this forum, I am always surprised by quality of the results. Expected worse.

Let's just say it is a lot more useful than many other features on current cameras, such as artsy-fartsy filters.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Fazal Majid
Contributing MemberPosts: 868Gear list
Like?
No, it's a deceptive marketing scam
In reply to bssfujifan, Jul 27, 2013

Worthless means 0 value, when in reality that "feature" has negative value. It's deceptive marketing and should really be banned by truth-in-advertising laws.

-- hide signature --

Fazal Majid (www.majid.info)

 Fazal Majid's gear list:Fazal Majid's gear list
Sony RX1 Fujifilm X100S Fujifilm X-Pro1 Canon EOS 5D Mark III Leica M Typ 240 +20 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Futax
Regular MemberPosts: 309Gear list
Like?
Re: No, it's a deceptive marketing scam
In reply to Fazal Majid, Jul 27, 2013

Fazal Majid wrote:

Worthless means 0 value, when in reality that "feature" has negative value. It's deceptive marketing and should really be banned by truth-in-advertising laws.

-- hide signature --

Fazal Majid (www.majid.info)

You're probably right, it'll pull the wool over the eyes of a lot of punters out there. But don't forget those same punters are just the sort of users who wouldn't even think of cropping their images to achieve the same results. So they'd be getting something from the camera that they otherwise wouldn't have.

 Futax's gear list:Futax's gear list
Sigma DP1 Fujifilm FinePix F70EXR Sigma DP2 Merrill Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Panasonic Lumix DMC-XS1 +4 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Peter Piper
New MemberPosts: 10
Like?
Re: Usually I am surprised by results
In reply to CAcreeks, Jul 27, 2013

CAcreeks wrote:

Whenever someone posts a "digital zoom" example on this forum, I am always surprised by quality of the results. Expected worse.

Let's just say it is a lot more useful than many other features on current cameras, such as artsy-fartsy filters.

I'm not a huge fan of it...

Full optical, EZ and digital zoom. (Cropped)

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Jerry Mucci
Regular MemberPosts: 329
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to jcmarfilph, Jul 28, 2013

"Pointless" for Joms, perhaps. But not for a lot of users. We need to try to look at things beyond our own narrow perspective. Professional movie reviewers tend to do the same thing. The audiences often enjoy movies the professional viewers pan, perhaps because jaded reviewers are easily bored or expect too much. The highly practiced photographer often pan camera features that are enjoyed by those less practiced than they.  I'm not surprised if auto focus is panned by some purists as a pointless feature that detracts from creativity.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
CAcreeks
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,836
Like?
Re: Usually I am surprised by results
In reply to Peter Piper, Jul 28, 2013

All you have to do is replace the sky with a gradient and you have a totally usable image, with legible markings on the helicopter.

you rewrote the JPEG so your example was unfair

Peter Piper wrote:

I'm not a huge fan of it...

Full optical, EZ and digital zoom. (Cropped)

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
chai1491
Junior MemberPosts: 29Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to bssfujifan, Jul 28, 2013

i use digital zoom for viewing only,not for photo.

 chai1491's gear list:chai1491's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P510
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Bill Donnell
Regular MemberPosts: 457Gear list
Like?
Re: Is digital zoom a worthless gimmick?
In reply to Jerry Mucci, Jul 29, 2013

I take a lot of travel photos. I do not post process unless I have to. I am satisfied with a pleasing picture I can view on my computer or occasional 8x10 prints max. I am not a pixel peeper.

Regarding digital zoom. I use it often when the subject it too far away for the shot I want. My X20 only has a 4X zoom. Intelligent zoom gives me 8X and no need to crop in post processing and much, better exposure in many cases. Here are two examples. One shot normal and one shot with intelligent zoom. My focus was on the hedge and and porch behind it. Just went outside after reading these posts and took these examples.

In the first shot (digital zoom). The hedge and porch was better exposed because the camera exposed for my area of interest without being effected by surroundings I did not want.

The second shot (normal) is under exposed for my area of interest (porch & hedge) because the surroundings that I did not want were in the frame and effect the exposure.

 Bill Donnell's gear list:Bill Donnell's gear list
Fujifilm X20 Fujifilm FinePix HS50 EXR Nikon D3200
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Bill Donnell
Regular MemberPosts: 457Gear list
Like?
Second Shot without Digital
In reply to Bill Donnell, Jul 29, 2013
No text.
 Bill Donnell's gear list:Bill Donnell's gear list
Fujifilm X20 Fujifilm FinePix HS50 EXR Nikon D3200
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads