Portability v Quality are we obsessed by size?

Started Jan 10, 2013 | Discussions thread
Rod McD Veteran Member • Posts: 5,759
Re: Portability v Quality are we obsessed by size?


I too know this one well. I've owned many cameras and currently have a G12, a G1X and a Pentax K5 DSLR with multiple lenses.  I was very very close to buying an XE1, but I'm persuaded now to wait - perhaps even for the XE2.  I've no shortage of good cameras for various purposes, but I want to see some reviews of the X cameras, tests of the forthcoming lenses, and the effectiveness of the new on-sensor PDAF.

We may be obsessed, but we're obsessed by different things.  For some it's IQ above all else - the guy carrying two or three pro DSLR bodies and a dozen lenses on his holiday.  At the other end of the scale,  it's portability - the i-phone and sub-compact user.  In between are  all the variations known to humanity and we each pick our set of preferences and limitations.  There are other obsessions too - lens speed is another obvious one.  To me the desire for lens speed is dragging down IQ (and portability) but it's not a popular view.

In discussions about mirrorless cameras and DSLRs, I've started referring to what I call "IQ per camera size and weight".  This has no actual equation or standard, but I think forum readers know what I mean.  The kilos of weight of DSLR systems may ultimately be more versatile than mirrorless systems, but IQ per camera size and weight is significantly lower.  The same might be said for bigger mirrorless cameras like the Pentax K01 compared to Fuji's XE1 and Sony's NEXs.  This 'IQ per camera size and weight' is obviously important to us and what we find acceptable is quite personal. There's no collective right answer.  It's our individual judgement call to suit our needs and no-one else.

Back to my cameras.  Do I ever wonder which one to take?  Yes, but I'm working it out.......  I take the G12 to social occasions where it's small and its almost infinite DOF helps make it easy to get sharp shots of groups, restaurant tables etc.  I take the G1X travelling and hiking because it's small, neat and light, and it has a great lens/sensor/image pipeline.  It's performance speed is ordinary but it gives the best IQ short of APSC.  I can only see the difference if I pixel peep.  I take the DSLR when I know I really want the very best out of a planned shoot.  Do I miss the DSLR when I take the others?  Yes occasionally, but not that much.  And if I have to travel for weeks with a camera constantly with me, I've learned that DSLRs are just too big.

YMMV.  Cheers, Rod

 Rod McD's gear list:Rod McD's gear list
Canon PowerShot G1 X Olympus Tough TG-4 Fujifilm X-T1 Voigtlander 90mm F3.5 APO-Lanthar SL II Fujifilm XF 35mm F1.4 R +9 more
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