Too niche

Started Sep 24, 2019 | User reviews thread
Enders Shadow
Enders Shadow Veteran Member • Posts: 3,250
Re: Too niche

smithaa02 wrote:

Most people use AP to control DOF and not light. It is very confusing to have three f-stops for aperture priority and the third setting is not really an fstop but an fstop equivalent in light. Not only do users not get the increased DOF they were after but they get an extra layer between the sensor and their subject which does hurt image quality.

Internal ND filters do not measurably effect IQ. It's ideally located and avoids the most of reflection issues of front mounted filters. I've done tests with and without the internal ND filter and can't detect any change in resolution. Of all the factors that can impact IQ, this is low on the list. Considering the lackluster sharpness of the lens, I'd consider it a non factor.

Olympus could easily communicate this better. The third fstop could be disabled by default, or it could be labeled as a ND filter as such on the menu.

It's common for small sensor cameras to use a ND filter, but few mention it in their specs. It's necessary to handle typical bright sunlit scenes. So far I've only noticed Nikon indicating the use of a ND filter. From the W300 specs:

Aperture: Electronically-controlled preset aperture (-1 AV) and ND filter (–2 AV) selections

Your average user won't know this. I've searched the manual and don't see a reference. Only those very familiar with cameras and/or that study the exif data will realize what is going on.

Those that have taken the time to study photography will learn how diffraction limits resolution. For a 1/2.3" sensor, diffraction limiting sets in at about f/5.6. There are various methods to determine when diffraction starts to impact IQ. Those who are critical about image sharpness tend to agree the image degrades noticeably when pushing aperture past the accepted limits.

Those with basic knowledge of photographic principles will likely figure out how small apertures are achieved. Some small sensor cameras limit the smallest selectable aperture, others use a ND filter and a few allow shooting well past the diffraction limit. In the case of folded optics designs, a ND filter is mandatory.

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