Tele-extender or cropping?

Started Oct 21, 2013 | Discussions thread
The Sage Knows Senior Member • Posts: 1,103
Crop - but with a sharp original

BertIverson wrote:

athleticpete wrote:

... Since I am also considering upgrading my body to a 7D I wonder if, with the increased pixels of the 7D, would I get better picture with a 2x digital zoom in photoshop, rather than the 2x optical zoom on camera. i am sure it would work for small prints, but what about A· size, or larger.

Any thoughts



A couple of years ago (on a 12MP DSLR), I did some tests to compare digital zoom with 2x tele-extender. I convinced myself to forget the tele-extender. Today with 20-36MP cameras, 2x digital zoom makes even more sense to me. Nothing to carry and no lens fiddling. Maybe in the 1-3MP camera era the optical extenders made sense.
of course, just my experience and personal preference,

With enough megapixels (that's why I get much more than I think I'll need for enlargements) and as long you start with a sharp - both optically and without motion blur - original, a crop of up to about 2x will look as good or better than an original with a converter. That is because you will be using the sharpest part of the lens image (cropping out the corners) yet still retaining enough pixels to print an 8x10ish enlargement and more than enough for web.

See also this thread where the subject of cropping was "discussed" (for the most part) :

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