So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?

Started 9 months ago | Discussions
topstuff
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So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
9 months ago

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

It is not the same as 3/2.  It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras.  People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever,  but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making.  This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

Was  is it hard?  Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

Or maybe you don't even really think about it and polish your shiny new gear instead?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place.  Or am I missing something?

tjuster1
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

topstuff wrote:

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

It is not the same as 3/2. It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras. People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever, but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making. This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

Was is it hard? Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

Or maybe you don't even really think about it and polish your shiny new gear instead?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place. Or am I missing something?

There was nothing magical about the 3:2 format; the only reason people miss it is because they are so used to it. You get used to 4:3, and, yes, often you have to crop. But then you often had to crop 3:2 as well, especially in portrait mode where I think most pictures are too stretched vertically.

I actually think 4:3 is more flexible, and definitely captures more of the image circle. I tend to like it for most pictures--maybe not so much for landscapes--but then I always crop my picture to the subject anyway.

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reygon
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No because...
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

because we are busy taking photos. the format does not bother me and we own ApPSC and ff too does it bother you?

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Hokuto
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

Why don't people ask MF users whether shooting in 2x2 involves an artistic shock. Or ask Pentax 6x7 users about the sacrifice involved when switching from 135 format. Or the same for 8x10 and 4x5 large format users? The only reason the aspect ratio of 35mm (135) film came into being is because 4/3 aspect movie film was already widely available when the first Leica was designed, and the designer found it "desirable" to double the "height" of the 4/3 movie frame and make that dimension the "width" of his new camera's frame, while the width of the old movie frame became the height of the new 135 frame. There's nothing holy about it.

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Peter Del
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

For 49 years I used the 3:2 format but last March I went 4:3. Initially I found it a little awkward, but now I never think about it; however, I do not crop my images. I only take landscape details and make the subject fit the frame.

What I have never understood is this; lenses produce a circular image, so why aren't all sensors square? There must be a reason.

Peter Del

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spotfromoz
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

I actually found it opened up my photography, my compositions were better and it makes me want to take more pictures. I was always fighting 3/2 format it didnt seem natural.

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mrc4nl
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

4:3 can be useful too ,if your object is quite square for example.On 3:2 the sides would be empty. Although 3:2 looks more natural, human Fov is also wide.

My camera is set to 4:3 if I want to go wider ill just crop in post., no big deal.

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Marcello Zini
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

Personally, I started dig photog with 4/3 on compact cameras and I got accustomed to it. When I switched to dslr it took me some time to get used to it as I found portrait and general picture taking more difficult, but in the end it worked out. When I went m43 I found the switch much easier than the previous ones - I think 4/3 ratio is a nice compromise and I need to work on PP cropping less than on 2/3

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Advent1sam
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Re: There is no reason that Oly and Pana can't make the sensor bigger?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

topstuff wrote:

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

It is not the same as 3/2. It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras. People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever, but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making. This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

Was is it hard? Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

Or maybe you don't even really think about it and polish your shiny new gear instead?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place. Or am I missing something?

As many old-timers on this forum know the GH1 and GH2 had larger sensors that covered all ratio's incl. 16:9, which gave excellent choice depending on what you were shooting. It also made the equivalent HOV wider, so that a 14mm lens was 25.5mm aprox in 16:9 and 26 in 3:2, which was cool. As of now I actually think you get more top and bottom into frame with 4:3 and as someone mentioned the 3:2 can sometimes look a bit empty on the sides.

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revio
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

topstuff wrote:

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

It is not the same as 3/2. It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras. People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever, but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making. This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

Was is it hard? Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

Or maybe you don't even really think about it and polish your shiny new gear instead?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place. Or am I missing something?

A. The camera lets you set a range of aspect ratios of your choice, including 3/2.

B. ALL compacts and "zuper zoom cameras" are 4/3-ratio cameras, so practically every person entering the m4/3 system from "lower end camera territory" have used that aspect ratio "since forever". I´d suspect that even most of the more "advanced amateurs" also have at least had, or have, some kind of compact. Thus they, too, would be used to the ratio.

Also, I can´t help but wonder why did you list "3/2, APS-C & FF" as if those were representing various aspect ratios? They all use the same: 3/2.

Back to m4/3:

Of course one can crop or so in post processing, but cropping already in camera sometimes makes it easier to compose exactly as you want it. Then, when you´re shooting RAW, you always have the full image capture left to deal with if you´d want to change someting after the fact.

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Pic Man
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

topstuff wrote:

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

It is not the same as 3/2. It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras. People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever, but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making. This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

Which is why you should change it according to the type of composition you want. Staying at 3:2 is uncreative if you think about it.

Was is it hard? Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

I sometimes find it a bit square for landscape shots but that's it.

Or maybe you don't even really think about it and polish your shiny new gear instead?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place. Or am I missing something?

You can change it. Every M43 camera gives you the option to change to 3:2, 16:9 and 1:1. A 16 MP camera cropped to 3:2 becomes a 14 MP camera and 12MP camera at 16:9. It's not really going to make a massive difference as even 12 MP is plenty for most people. If you're the kind of person who prints really big then M43 is the wrong choice for you anyway.

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s_grins
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

Why? Because 4/3 is not aspect ratio only. It happens to be sensor size too.

Because forum is about gear, we talk more of this aspect of 4/3.

Also we sometimes talk about aesthetical metis of 4/3, so, please, stay tuned.

P.S. Thank you for not attaching the photo of your toddler to the post - this is a very noble gesture from you.

Best

S.

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Michael J Davis
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

topstuff wrote:

I know this is a gear forum, but the 4/3 aspect ratio is a big deal.

Not *only* a gear forum...

It is not the same as 3/2. It is not the same as a APSC or FF , or really, ANY other camera.

People come and go on this forum talking about moving to m43 so they have smaller and lighter cameras. People wax lyrical about the EM-1 as The Best Camera Ever, but no-one talks about the aspect ratio.

The aspect ratio can make a big difference to photo making. This is a creative thing we are doing, so what is the experience of people here in adapting to 4/3 over 3/2 from a creative standpoint?

You speak as though the AR is 'fixed' - today is 14 years since I went digital; before that I had 46 years of 35mm at 3:2 and occasionally borrowed a Rolleflex which was 1:1.

At no time did I feel limited by the fact that I would have to crop to get the picture I wanted. Though obviously, there were times when I wished the sensor would expand to get all the detail I required! Sometimes filling the frame resulted in creative opportunities, sometimes not.

Was is it hard? Do you find that you have to crop more because the format seems too square? Or do you not notice?

The 4/3 aspect is a big change for some people.

I am surprised that so little talk of it takes place. Or am I missing something?

Yes, the picture is in the mind of the photographer, s/he uses the tool in hand for the job.

Don't let the camera dictate the picture!!  And don't let people tell you you can use a smaller sensor to get the 'right' AR - use the maximum sensor size available in your camera and use it to the max!!

Mike

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SkiHound
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

I think different formats are more/less appropriate for different subject matter. I think 43 tends to work very well for portraits and it better approximates many common print sizes. I think wider formats are often better with landscapes, though I'm generalizing but I don't think one format is necessarily better or worse.

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duartix
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

Is this post a statistical abnormality???
14 people replied to a controversial theme and not a single discussion emerged?
Is this the m43 forum?

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Sasha B
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

4/3 used in medium format cameras for years. Also most of the compact cameras are using it. Contrary to what is believed it is a much more comfortable format for composition. It was used frequently before photography - actually 3/2 is not that popular among painters - and they can choose whatever aspect ratio as they want - frequently choose 4/3. First cinema aspect was 4/3 too.    So looking from my point of view 3/2 is an anomaly, not the rule.

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Hen3ry
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Haven't you noticed? We are offered three or four formats …
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

… and we use them.

I work mainly in 3:2, also in 16:9 for some stuff -- particularly landscapes, and 4:3 for some other stuff, particularly portraits in vertical orientation.

Square is also there, of course. I don't use it except by accident.

Before 35mm (i.e. FF), roll film cameras ruled. They were 1:1 (e.g. 6x6cm), 4:3 (e.g. 6x4.5) or 3:2 (i.e. 9x6 cm).

Most pix were printed on 10X8" paper for all kinds of uses , which is 4:5 format.

Cheers, geoff

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Fredrik Glckner
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

Before coming to M4/3, I often cropped the sides of my images, so 4:3 fits my preference better anyway. Of course there are times when I photograph wide subjects, and I miss having the multi aspect sensor on the GH2.

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oeoek
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Re: So why don't people ever talk about the 4/3 aspect ratio?
In reply to topstuff, 9 months ago

The topic has been discussed often, and my answer is always the same; I came from medium and large format film, and the 4x3 format suits me better that the 3x2 format derived from 35mm. Most prints I make are 4x3, and when I change that, it is to square format or much slimmer formats (think panorama-slim).

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billy pictura
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Re: Why would M4/3 not be good for printing big?
In reply to Pic Man, 9 months ago

Hi Pic Man:

Read your comment on aspect ration, wanted to ask you why you think M4/3 would not be good for printing large prints?

About to take the dive into the Omd Em1 and want to print up to at 20x30's or a little larger at times.

thanks,

Billy

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