Potential dead horse: how bad is FF's deep DoF disadvantage?

Started Mar 5, 2014 | Discussions thread
bobbarber Contributing Member • Posts: 786
Re: no disadvantage

Keep it apples to apples. I never said anything about a wide angle lens. But a 36 MP FF would be able to generate a print with the same resolution as your point and shoot with a 135mm lens cropped.

I'm not sure about this. If you read the review of the D800 on this site, they are cautious about promising extra resolution. You have to use the best lenses, best tripods, etc. to get the most out of the camera. And if you want to get the same pixel density as my SX230HS on one of those cameras, you would need a lot more than 36 Mp and you would need consequently better lenses.

Let's start with stabilization. Let's say that on an 8 Mp FF camera, the shutter shakes the camera, even on a tripod, the width of a pixel. Since it's only the width of a pixel, the image is perfectly sharp. But that same shutter shake is 2 pixels wide on a 32 Mp camera. Your image is now no sharper than the 8 Mp camera. So to do ridiculous crops, you have to have ridiculous image stabilization, and that's a huge disadvantage compared to smaller formats. You don't get what I'm assuming you think 36 Mp of sharpness should be by swinging a 135mm lens around in the air after a bird.

Now what about lenses? You need the "best" lenses, according to dpreview, to take advantage of 36 Mp. Let's say you want a long lens, 600mm. Why don't you price the best FF long lenses, via Google? Here's a hint: they're in the $10,000 range. (Actually, even crappy 600mm lenses are really expensive on FF. Only the junk ones are affordable.) However, even those $10,000 lenses would not be adequate for a 50 Mp, or 100 Mp sensor, which you would need to match the zoom capabilities of smaller sensors.

I'm not denying that you can crop somewhat from a good FF sensor, but you can't achieve anything remotely like the zoom capabilities of a smaller sensor. As things stand now, small sensor formats have done a better, more affordable job of solving their inherent disadvantage, i.e., wide-angle shooting, then large sensor formats have done solving their inherent disadvantage, i.e., affordable, sharp long lenses. I can get a premium, razor sharp 7mm (14mm FF equivalent) wide lens for around $1,000 on m43. Many FX shooters keep a DX body just for zoom work. They know that cropping FX is not a solution.

No format is perfect. I've said in pretty much every post here that FF wins on dynamic range and noise. It's no contest, really. FF photos are smooth and beautiful. But other formats have advantages too. Zoom range goes to the smaller formats. If you don't see it, I'm not sure you're being honest, unless you can do better than the "crop" myth, which falls apart under examination, not even to speak of real world experience.

 bobbarber's gear list:bobbarber's gear list
Kodak DX3500 Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom Olympus C-8080 Wide Zoom Olympus C-7070 Wide Zoom Canon PowerShot SX230 HS +4 more
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