Camera size over five decades plus

Started 4 months ago | Discussions thread
RetCapt Regular Member • Posts: 493
Re: Camera size over five decades plus

The comparisons can vary, depending on frame of reference.     My full frame DSLR is what was termed 'prosumer', intended to bridge the gap between advanced amateur and professional (without getting into an endless sidebar debate on the definition of that term).    It is large and heavy.    Without holding them side by side, it feels very consistent in size and weight with my first series Leicaflex and my Contarex.    These were both heavy film SLRs.     When I first started looking for a DSLR, later refining the search to be for a full-frame DSLR, I was put off by the light weight and plastic feel of the cameras, since I was accustomed to my two film SLRs.     I equated (still do) weight with structural integrity.     From my first time out with my full-frame DSLR I was not just impressed, but blown away.    The performance, handling and precise feel of the camera in my mind justify the size and weight.    There is sufficient surface area to ensure a firm grip and the weight means stability.   The results, as one should expect, are stellar.    That always depends on the photographer of course, but my experience has been that this system can make even a duffer look pretty competent.

OTOH, other than the two SLRs listed above, the bulk of my film gear was screw thread (LTM) Canon and Leica (the same Leicas one poster in the HCB thread referred to as "low end", which I have not ever previously seen applied to any Leica, but that may be reflective of levels of elitism to which I can only aspire).     In size and weight these old rangefinder cameras compare to digital 'tough' cameras or 'travel zooms'.     But while the rangefinder cameras were entirely manual, using external meters, and limited to prime lenses, the similar sized digital cameras allow any level of automation one might desire, along with integral zoom lenses.    The results far exceed what I got from any of my 35mm film cameras (again, my experience, YMMV).      Given that these compact digital cameras are about the size of a deck of cards, by any index of efficiency they are very impressive.

So while the frames of reference can vary, the constant is that the technology and designers can engineer far greater performance capability into digital cameras than was ever possible with equivalent size film cameras.

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MOD Smaug01
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