Possibly moving to full-frame mirrorless from m4/3’s

Started Nov 21, 2020 | Discussions thread
avalvo Senior Member • Posts: 1,649
Re: Two quick and easy reasons

I am also a multi format shooter.  Using M43, FF and MF these days has given me a lot of perspective.

Much depends on what you shoot and how you shoot it.  They all have their sweet spots and their weaknesses.  That said, I can do high quality work with all.  It is just a matter of knowing the tools.

From what I am gathering you are doing some hiking and probably nature photography - landscapes and birds, etc.  You also have a nice complement of Olympus gear.  I have a similar set up and can see why you are struggling.  These are really great cameras and lenses.

A few thoughts:

No doubt that FF has better image quality when you can use the right lenses, and fill the frame.  It has better tonal transitions and easier post - more flexible files.  You have to meet that criteria and in some cases the advantage shrinks.

Here is what I mean:

- Yes, lenses on FF are getting smaller.  But, that is only if you are comparing the slower FF lenses, say a 50mm 1.8 to say a 25mm Oly 1.2.  They are about the same size, but the Oly is still a faster lens and can be shot at 1.2.  Now the gap shrinks between the two systems.  And, M43 IBIS is still the very best - gap narrows more.  Sure, put a 50mm 1.2 back on the FF camera and you have back your advantages - but you have to want to carry the weight and that is a large difference.  Also, M43 zooms are awesome lenses.  When I shoot M43, I almost always shoot the zooms.  They are just that good.  This is due to the image circle, the 4:3 format and good Oly design.  With FF that is not the case, I usually turn to primes because there is a noticeable difference.  Again, now the gap seems to shrink.

- If you are shooting landscape an nature, M43 offers a DOF advantage.  I may need to stop down to F11 with FF to get that DOF I need for a scene.  But, with FF, I am Ok with F5.6 and right in the sweet spot of the lens.  So, now the gap is not so much.  FF will still have better DR, but I can usually solve that with a graduated filter.  Also, in a lot of landscape and nature shooting you can use the HR mode of the Oly.  Now you are really narrowing the gap to full-frame.  Some will say that you will get blur with moving objects, etc.  I find this a, mostly, non-issue.  This can happen when you are in challenging light - yes.  But, it will also happen with FF where you are stopping down for DOF and using longer shutter speeds.

- On the telephoto end, M43 starts to shrink the practical difference.  Now it is giving you reach that is not easy to hit with huge expense and weight in FF world.   Here there can be little to no gap.  As I said, for the FF advantage, you need to fill the frame.  If I were you, I think I'd pickup a 300MM F4.  With the new lens coming out, there should be some nice used ones coming on market.

Point here, is that you are smart to evaluate your situation. And, do not assume  that M43 will not develop.  It will certainly develop because the faster sensor readout had some real advantages.

Last, I will leave you with a photo that I have used as an example here before.  On this fine morning I only had my E-m1 II kit with me.  And truth be told I had tried to do this scene in M43 and FF before and was not happy with those attempts.  But, on that morning, the light and the moon were right, so we go with what we have.

There was 18 stops of light to tame in this image.  From the bright moon to the foreground.  It would be hard for any camera.  But, I knew what I had to do and I how to make the tools work for me.  This all done in camera and required very little post processing.

Good luck in your quest.  Hope we were able to help.

 avalvo's gear list:avalvo's gear list
Nikon D850 Olympus OM-D E-M1X Fujifilm GFX 100
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