APS-H sensor: Advantages and disadvantages and future of Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

Started Aug 17, 2011 | Discussions thread
Michael Thomas Mitchell Forum Pro • Posts: 12,158
Re: APS-H sensor: Advantages and disadvantages and future of Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say... it doesn't really matter.

APS-H is a totally "in-between" sensor size, fitted right in the middle of full frame and Nikon/Canon cropped sensors. It requires no special lenses and has only been used in FOUR bodies.

I personally liked the format, finding it to be a good compromise between the 1.6x sensors (which were too small for my tastes and needs) and full-frame. Since it's only been used in Canon's pro bodies, I don't see any huge investment in it anywhere. Frankly, it would not surprise me if Canon only released a single Mark V pro body in the future that was full frame only. And I don't see pros being so heavily invested in the H format that it would be terrible. Again, no special gear is necessary. Maybe just a small -- if perhaps even welcome -- adjustment.

In this respect, it's something perhaps of passing interest, but of little consequence in the future.

By the way, I keep a full-frame 1Ds-series, a 1.3x 1D-series, and a 1.6x xxD-series bodies in my case. I use the H-sensor camera the most because I it offers plenty of resolution, lots of speed, and versatility with my lenses. Maybe one day in the future, I'll be using only the full-frame and 1.6x bodies. The 1DIIn will, however, have to simply WEAR OUT before that day comes.

Robsphoto wrote:

Hi all, I recently posted an enquiry on the Sony SLR Talk forum which asks whether Sony might consider manufacturing a camera with an APS-H sensor, as is the case with the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV:


Overall, the response has been quite negative, with most people thinking the disadvantages of an APS-H camera outweigh their advantages.

If you own a Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, I would be pleased if you could post your views to the above Sony forum as to the advantages and disadvantages of using an APS-H camera. I think it’s quite hard to consider all the relevant advantages and disadvantages if you don’t actually own an APS-H camera, such as the EOS-1D Mark IV.

The main objection seems to be that, to avoid vignetting / loss of megapixels recorded in an APS-H image, you really need to use lenses designed for a full frame camera, and this adds to the cost and weight of the lenses.

Incidentally, it’s strongly rumoured that Sony is about to announce details of its new 24 megapixel APS-C camera (Sony A77), and some people think that 24 mp on an APS-C sensor which measures 23.5mm x 15.6mm, reduces the pixel size too much. Therefore, a “compromise” solution would be to have 24mp on a 27.9mm x18.6mm APS-H sensor – which would you prefer?


Detailed explanation of why the Canon 7D has a 49% pixel density advantage over the Canon 5D II

p.s. One reply on the above Sony forum mentions this:

“All the crop frame cameras came about due to the cost of producing full-frame sensors. Even at the professional level, when the Canon 1D came out they decided APS-H was the maximum size their customers would pay for. No other reason. It's very unlikely Canon will continue to release bodies with these sensor sizes - as there are no lenses optimized for this imaging circle, you might as well use a full-frame sensor today.”

So, what do you think the future is for APS-H cameras?

 Michael Thomas Mitchell's gear list:Michael Thomas Mitchell's gear list
Canon EOS-1D Mark II Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 80D Canon EOS 5D Mark IV GoPro Hero7 Black +6 more
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