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

Started 10 months ago | Discussions thread
abera Regular Member • Posts: 103
Some corrections
3

avalvo wrote:

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.

A FF 50/1.8 is faster than a 25/1.2 on Olympus.

On FF 1.8 allows for faster shutter speed than 1.2 on m43 while maintaining the same image quality.

One must remember that the aperture diameter is not "1.8 or 1.2", but f/1.8 or f/1.2 - a mathematical formula where f stands for focal length - thus a 50mm f/1.8 lens has 28mm aperture diameter, while a 25mm f/1.2 has 21mm aperture diameter - if the angle of view is the same, then the bigger hole of the 50mm lens allows for more light to pass through, and more light means more information, higher signal to noise ratio over the same time period.

hey are about the same size, but the Oly is still a faster lens

Slower.

and can be shot at 1.2.

f/1.2, not 1.2.

Now the gap shrinks between the two systems. And, M43 IBIS is still the very best - gap narrows more.

I'm sure it's a nice IBIS, but not only it doesn't stop movement (even slight breeze can cause problems with longer exposures), but also other systems have arguably just as good image stabilization systems.

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.

You would only want to have 50/2.4 if you want FF system to do the same job a 25/1.2 does on m43. Though the FF would still have potential for higher resolution as well as larger SNR throughout the (larger) dynamic range.

Also, M43 zooms are awesome lenses.

Awesome is subjective. Are they better than the basic 24-70 kit zoom? On what meterics?

When I shoot M43, I almost always shoot the zooms. They are just that good.

Most people use just zooms. That doesn't tell anything about quality.

This is due to the image circle, the 4:3 format and good Oly design.

Smaller image circle is a problem actually - not only the lens has to perform better per mm on the image sensor (twice as good if m43 vs FF), but also the manufacturing tolerances are tighter.

4:3 format is usually not an advantage especially for landscapes - not only are most displays 16:9, but also our binocular eyesight is significantly wider than tall.

And also many "Oly designed" lenses are actually designed by a 3rd party (as relevant patents show). Also, no reason to think they are better because of being of certain brand.

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.

Z24-70/4 likely delivers better iq than similar field of view and aperture diameter m43 zooms. Lens lineup to the Nikon Z is lacking though.

Also again just your subjective view not shared by all.

- If you are shooting landscape an nature, M43 offers a DOF advantage.

Myth. The same aperture diameter gives the same DoF. f/4 on m43 and f/8 on FF offer same DoF.

I may need to stop down to F11 with FF to get that DOF I need for a scene.

And? Same diffraction, same DoF, same amount of light per secont through the lens. If the sensors can't be saturated, then apert from likely higher resolution on the FF there is little between the resulting images. If exposure time can be long enough for saturating the sensor, then FF has twice the SNR as well.

But, with FF, I am Ok with F5.6 and right in the sweet spot of the lens.

You're lenses are quite bad if you need to stop them that much - diffraction causes some softening aleready at that aperture on m43.

So, now the gap is not so much. FF will still have better DR,

Interestingly DR is not strictly a function of sensor size but of several parameters (read noise, saturation capacity of pixel and pixel count, with some caveats) 

But yes, FF sensors usually have larger DR.

but I can usually solve that with a graduated filter.

Clumsy as you'll want to use one of those big square ones unless your horizon is in the middle.

Also, in a lot of landscape and nature shooting you can use the HR mode of the Oly.

Or do the same on either other cameras supporting such more or just taking a few shots and doing the same in post processing.

Also not good with any movement.

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.

I find it to be a big issue. A slight wind alone causes problems.

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.

Sure .

- 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.

In part this is true - for FF there are not many long lenses that are as slow as the m43 teles are usually. Though a simple 2x TC typically solves that problem.

Here there can be little to no gap.

The gap appears immediately when you need a large aperture.

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.

I didn't notice a 300/4 on Z roadmap - maybe it'll appear someday. It's like 150/2 on m43.

Or if you meant 300/4 on m43? That's like 600/8 on FF - as I said, slow lenses are not that common on FF world without teleconverters. I imagine the upcoming 200-600 will do the trick, though it'll be faster.

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.

Cell phones are eating much of the m43 market from one end, smaller APS-C and FF from the other end. There's just not that much market for m43 - it's not going away any time soon, but not will it go much forward either. I doubt Panasonic has much motivation as thet have another mount and may well introduce APS-C stepping stop for that mount. Olympus of course is pretty much gone. I image m43 will be in the more distant future mainly a video centric system, and maybe in 15 years a legacy system.

It will certainly develop because the faster sensor readout had some real advantages.

Which sensor readout speed you're talking about? And what advantages? Sony A9 series has the readout speed advantage of all larger sensors due to stacked sensor - the sensors in m43 cameras on the other hand are pretty much all quite long in tooth AFAIK.

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.

Very nice photo, but the only potetial advantage for m43 system in this was the lighter weight of it.

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

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