Is FF sensors going to slowly phase out?

Started Apr 11, 2013 | Discussions thread
Bart Hickman Veteran Member • Posts: 7,256
Re: Is FF sensors going to slowly phase out?

Erik Magnuson wrote:

Bart Hickman wrote:

However the size itself is a down-side.

Not always: Larger size can mean larger, better separated controls for use with gloves or in the heat of the moment.  Larger battery capacity.  Space for dual card slots, etc.

That's a good point, although I personally think APS-C cameras are about the right size where the size of the camera driven by lenses and electronics coincides with the ergonomic optimum.  Perhaps in the future, physical buttons won't be the best way to control a camera.

Better noise performance can be obtained through other advancements (as is has been over recent years), but car cargo capacity can only be achieved by making the car big.

The same performance tricks can be applied to the large sensor as well.  The performance advantage remains the same.

I know the advantage remains the same.  What I'm arguing is the relevance of the advantage does not remain the same while the relevance of the disadvantages is remaining the same (lenses are still large.)

Clearly this could, hypothetically, go the other way.  I suppose someone could figure out how to make FF lenses small enough that size is no longer a factor.  Of course this is even more disruptive as it probably makes all existing systems obsolete rather than only current FF systems.

They only like the larger camera because the lenses are so big.  If the Pentax Q had the same performance characteristics as a Nikon D800, the D800 would be in big trouble.

Not going to happen anytime soon. And then whatever the D800 equivalent of the time will be, it will also have similar performance improvements.

I was just pointing out that size, in and of itself, is usually a disadvantage.

From what I've read, the 5.25" drives were only closing the gap for smaller capacity sizes.

So you put them in an array of multiple drives.  The fast 8" drives were fast because they used a lot of platters. Does it matter if you have 8 platters in one case or 4 cases of two platters each?  Which solution scales better?

Hard drives have some significant physical issues as well: mass of the platters, mass of the heads, energy required to drive those masses,  distance the heads needs to move to seek, etc.  The angular momentum and head mass of some of those old drives was such that certain seek patterns could make the drive housing "walk" like an out of balance washing machine.

I'm just quoting from plots from the books I've read.  For whatever reason, at the time 8" drives disappeared, they still exceeded the price/performance of 5.25" drives at high capacities by a significant margin that did not appear to be narrowing significantly.

FF cameras are also currently a better price/performance value for high performance uses in the performance space that many people still care about.  But in the future, the APS-C (or smaller) mirrorless cameras could erode that segment from the bottom and FF cameras could find themselves being well-suited to a very small segment of the market.


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