M6II 5X Digital Zoom Fun

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Photato Senior Member • Posts: 2,703
M6II 5X Digital Zoom Fun

Since the early days of digital and 6MP cameras, when people discussed the advantages of high megapixels sensors they usually touted the potential benefit to make substantial crops, but those pixels were not enough back then...

Back to the "future" with 32MP cameras and sharp compact lenses available I took my new M6II, put the EFM 22mm pancake on to find out how this actually looks in practice and what was the shooting experience like.
After some tests I decided to set the limit of minimum acceptable quality at 5X crop, turning this pancake lens into a 22-110mm eq framing wise but YMMV.
This translate to 1,398 x 928 pixels crop.

Bear in mind the M6II lacks any kind of Digital Zoom function or Live Crop Mode so I have to find some workarounds to make it work.
To get the most out of every pixel special considerations have to be made.
For Exposure I used Spot Metering so it ignores most of the frame.
Used aperture priority with large apertures to get fast shutter speeds to freeze motion or camera shake while trying to maintain ISO as low as possible.
For Focus I kept single spot AF in the center.
To frame the shot I used the 5X magnification function which is a happy coincidence for 5X crops, not so much luck when doing 2x and other levels, but can be eye-balled.
For Picture Style I used Fine Detail which Canon introduced with the 5DS 51MP camera to get the most detail out of every pixel from that sensor.
I also shoot Raw since it gives you the extra flexibility in regional Tonal Curves and Sharpness adjustability.

It goes without saying that Digital Zoom (Crop) is not a replacement for an Optical Zoom lens so keeps your expectations accordingly.

But !!, in real life when all you carry is the 22mm lens, is good to know how far you can push it or how big you can blow tiny subjects.
After this experience I think the 22mm pancake is easily the most versatile and portable M lens, well suited to bear substantial crops.

Sooooo, these are the pictures I took at the Florida State Fair in one afternoon.
Crops are at different levels not all 5X.

Ferris Wheel was moving slowly, but pixels came out tack sharp. (5X Digital Zoom)

Bird was flapping its wings but shutter froze the motion thanks to large aperture. I could not get any closer hence--> (5X Digital Zoom)

3X Digital Zoom

Ring was enclosed in a plexiglass box that won't allow me to get any closer. A large aperture and a 5X Crop came to the rescue.

4X Digital Zoom to isolate subject

Another 5X Crop, but you can tell this image rich texture is pushing the limits of acceptable quality.

3X Digital Zoom



Challenging low light and moving subject. (3X Crop)


Crop Marks from Raw shots for reference.

Gear. Small yet powerful !!

Thanks for watching:-)

 Photato's gear list:Photato's gear list
Panasonic LX100 Canon EOS M Canon EOS M6 Canon EOS M6 II Canon EF 50mm F1.8 II +12 more
Canon EOS 5DS
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