Reading resolution charts comparing MFT lenses to FX lenses

Started Mar 29, 2013 | Questions thread
RoelHendrickx Forum Pro • Posts: 26,256
I wonder

Great Bustard wrote:

Prairie Pal wrote:

I'm at photozone review website browsing through lenses for both FX and MFT.  I see that the highest resolving FX lenses can be near the 4000 lw/ph range.  The better MFT lenses rarely even get to 2300.  Is the difference between the 2 types of lenses relative?  Surely even the best MFT glass isn't inferior to FX.  I admit I can't technically explain what lw/ph is measureing, but to a certain extent I look at those graphs as a means of measuring one lens against another ie, when comparing the Sigma 35 1.4 to Nikon 35, or the various MFT primes between each other.

...and Anders will hopefully chime in so you can watch us argue about it. 

First of all, the resolution in the final photo, which is what PZ measures, is a function of many different factors:

  • Lens sharpness
  • Pixel count
  • Sensor size
  • AA filter
  • RAW conversion
  • Additional processing

In other words, you aren't looking at lens tests, you are looking at system tests (this is true for all other testing sites as well).

I thought the explanation by Chatokun was pretty clear (at least that made ME understand it).

And of course your opinion that lenses are not tested "in the void" but in front of a system's sensor, is also valid.

Which makes me wonder (just a theoretical spiel) :

* If one wanted to test the quality of lenses across systems (just the lenses, not the sensors), would it not be conceivable to mount all lenses from all systems in front of the same sensor (through a specific set of adapters, used only for that purpose), in order to level to playing field for the lenses?

* If this was (theoretically) conceivable, would it then be best to use a BIG sensor (in size or in pixel count), or a smaller one, as that level playing field.

* More practical : don't all systems have roughly the same resolution sensors by now (and I mean SOMEWHERE in their lineup : for some systems that may be the top resolution sensor, while other systems may have such a sensor and others with higher MP count above it).  In other words : could we not all test all lenses from all systems on let's say a 12MP or a 14MP sensor?

Just wondering out loud.

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Roel Hendrickx
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