Why insist on FF format?

Started Sep 22, 2012 | Discussions
sansbury Regular Member • Posts: 231
Re: Why insist on FF format?

3-4 years is way too short, but how about 10?

Riddle me this:

  • Leading FF dSLRs can already produce better images than the best MF film cameras, which were the gold standard for decades in everything short of fine art

  • Print as a market is dying. Even for the glossy books like Vogue that may survive intact (which are a small fraction of the pro market even now), the limiting factor is more likely to be their printing press than the camera's sensor.

  • The Web places a greater premium on video, and display resolutions are increasing much more slowly than sensor capabilities.

  • Compact sensors are likely to continue evolving, and in the next 10 years may approach or exceed the capabilities of today's dSLRs. Does anyone know where physics begins to impose hard limits on things like DR and pixel density vs. noise? They're there, I have no idea how close we are.

  • For those who say, "there's always room for the very best," that's true, but look at Hasselblad specifically and MF digital in general. Most working professionals don't have as much money to burn as rich amateurs do, and choose their equipment based on a business calculation.

  • In imaging terms, film cameras evolved at a relatively slow pace after the introduction of the SLR. Lens and coating design evolved, as did film chemistry, but there were few great leaps. Kodachrome was a reference process for most of a century, and in the 70s Kodak sold around 90% of the film used in the US. From the 80s on, almost all of the innovation was incorporating electronics into cameras and lenses, which were convenience-enhancers, albeit very useful ones.

Given all of this, it's not hard to imagine reaching a point where weight, size, and cost become far more important factors than image quality.

woof woof
woof woof Senior Member • Posts: 1,827
Re: Why insist on FF format?

kelly15 wrote:

Show me your best FF image, then i'll reply you.

I'm a bit of a MFT fan and I like my G1. I've got some good shots with my G1 and on screen or in print it's very difficult to tell my best G1 shots from my best 5D shots, unless the shots were taken at the extremes of what the kit can do or if I look reeeeaaaallllly closely.

My G1 and 5D aren't the latest things but I fully expect the same to be true with the very latest and best MFT and FF gear too.

Thomas Kachadurian
Thomas Kachadurian Veteran Member • Posts: 3,655
Re: APS-C the loser

Landscapephoto99 wrote:

My opinion is that APS-C will be struggling in the long run, not FF. FF will always be the biggest for those that like it. And m43rds / NEX will increasingly have 99.99999% of the quality of FF for common sense people like me and so will increasingly capture the rest of the market. APS-C DSLRs, on the other hand, are neither fish nor fowl and so at some point will start to seriously lose market share, maybe when PDAF becomes the norm for mirrorless.

I think you are onto something. Aps-c started as a stop gap format for digital. It will be the first to go.

Tom

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Call me crazy. I happen to like photos of cats.

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woof woof
woof woof Senior Member • Posts: 1,827
Re: APS-C the loser

Thomas Kachadurian wrote:

I think you are onto something. Aps-c started as a stop gap format for digital. It will be the first to go.

Canon and Nikon aren't going to join MFT. They'll continue to market both FF and APS-C.

PerL Forum Pro • Posts: 14,024
Re: Why insist on FF format?

sansbury wrote:

3-4 years is way too short, but how about 10?

Riddle me this:

  • Leading FF dSLRs can already produce better images than the best MF film cameras, which were the gold standard for decades in everything short of fine art

  • Print as a market is dying. Even for the glossy books like Vogue that may survive intact (which are a small fraction of the pro market even now), the limiting factor is more likely to be their printing press than the camera's sensor.

  • The Web places a greater premium on video, and display resolutions are increasing much more slowly than sensor capabilities.

  • Compact sensors are likely to continue evolving, and in the next 10 years may approach or exceed the capabilities of today's dSLRs. Does anyone know where physics begins to impose hard limits on things like DR and pixel density vs. noise? They're there, I have no idea how close we are.

  • For those who say, "there's always room for the very best," that's true, but look at Hasselblad specifically and MF digital in general. Most working professionals don't have as much money to burn as rich amateurs do, and choose their equipment based on a business calculation.

  • In imaging terms, film cameras evolved at a relatively slow pace after the introduction of the SLR. Lens and coating design evolved, as did film chemistry, but there were few great leaps. Kodachrome was a reference process for most of a century, and in the 70s Kodak sold around 90% of the film used in the US. From the 80s on, almost all of the innovation was incorporating electronics into cameras and lenses, which were convenience-enhancers, albeit very useful ones.

Given all of this, it's not hard to imagine reaching a point where weight, size, and cost become far more important factors than image quality.

Since also phone cameras will evolve, the DOF control is what will stand out, and here FF rules.
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MrScorpio
MrScorpio Senior Member • Posts: 1,413
Hahaha...

You obviously have never handled a 5d with the 85/1.2
Its just another level of photography. Full Stop.

Having said that I ditched my 5d2 for the omd, which is good enough, but still faaaar away from FF.

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Robert Kinsell Regular Member • Posts: 257
FF = medium format, MFormat = Large format, etc.

And MFT and APS = 35MM ... new math for new photographic times.

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howardfuhrman Veteran Member • Posts: 4,109
Re: Why insist on FF format?

If weight, bulk and cost were not considerations, I would probably have a FF DSLR. If I had wings I might be able to fly. I don't have wings, I cannot fly. Weight, bulk and cost will continue to be key considerations for practically all buyers of digital cameras.

It was not that many years ago that some people in the forums were contending that investing in cameras with APC sensors was not wise because they argued that the price of FF would fall and eliminate the APC market. The price of both FF and APC DSLR's have come down, but the low end FF body is now cost roughly three times or more entry level APC's.

APC mirrorless cameras have done an unbelievable job of reducing the size of camera bodies practically to the size of m4/3. Further Canon, Nikon and Sony may reduce the size of FF body sizes. But the size of most APC and FF lenses are and will remain very large in comparison to comparable m43 lenses.

I do not expect FF DSLR's to disappear. As prices drop I believe that their market will increase. There are professionals and many others that want and/or need the fastest camera with the best IQ cameras that can shoot relatively noise free at high ISO's. I expect that technology will narrow the IQ gap between FF and smaller sensor cameras, but the IQ gap will always exist.

PerL Forum Pro • Posts: 14,024
Re: Why insist on FF format?

howardfuhrman wrote:

If weight, bulk and cost were not considerations, I would probably have a FF DSLR. If I had wings I might be able to fly. I don't have wings, I cannot fly. Weight, bulk and cost will continue to be key considerations for practically all buyers of digital cameras.

It was not that many years ago that some people in the forums were contending that investing in cameras with APC sensors was not wise because they argued that the price of FF would fall and eliminate the APC market. The price of both FF and APC DSLR's have come down, but the low end FF body is now cost roughly three times or more entry level APC's.

APC mirrorless cameras have done an unbelievable job of reducing the size of camera bodies practically to the size of m4/3. Further Canon, Nikon and Sony may reduce the size of FF body sizes. But the size of most APC and FF lenses are and will remain very large in comparison to comparable m43 lenses.

There is a sweetspot for FF lenses - primes between 20-85 mm at 1.8-2.8. These lenses are neither big or expensive. On the extreme ends, the difference vs m43 is much larger, but the range 20-85 is probably the most useful for the majority.

I do not expect FF DSLR's to disappear. As prices drop I believe that their market will increase. There are professionals and many others that want and/or need the fastest camera with the best IQ cameras that can shoot relatively noise free at high ISO's. I expect that technology will narrow the IQ gap between FF and smaller sensor cameras, but the IQ gap will always exist.

amalric
amalric Forum Pro • Posts: 10,839
Similar question asked at TOP

The answer is precise and laconic:

"Mike replies: to me, the three biggest advantages of full frame are as follows, in order:

Restores larger, higher-magnification viewfinders in DSLRs similar to 35mm SLR viewfinders;

Restores legacy 35mm focal lengths to their accustomed angles of view (important for wide-angle lenses);

A little better quality in some shooting circumstances (not necessarily all) if you're making large, high-quality prints."

Does this rock your boat considering the difference in price? It doesn't mine.

BTW in mirrorless one can have EVF whose size is not dictated by that of the mirror, so that leaves substantially the last two. I don't do prints so I am not interested.

One can miniaturise FF bodies, like Sony but lenses will be substantially bigger, more expensive, with no visible difference.

People will moan about the superior bokeh of FF but I don't mind. I chose 4/3 for the opposite reason. I don't need bokeh, i prefer everything in focus, most of the time.

So, know thy system and the answer will come by itself. 4/3 was a deliberte choice, when FF was already there. The Phoblographer made an interesting comparison between the Leica and the E-P2 and showed that there was no visible difference in resolution.

Am.
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sansbury Regular Member • Posts: 231
Re: Why insist on FF format?

PerL wrote:

Since also phone cameras will evolve, the DOF control is what will stand out, and here FF rules.

Until the iPhone 7 has the Instabokeh app

Midnighter Senior Member • Posts: 1,727
OMD Vs D800

Full frame wont wither, its APS-C that will. As FF becomes cheaper APSC people will migrate because there is not enough of a size/weight difference between the two. Huge fat MFT cameras aside (cough) if someone put forward two systems, one full frame and one MFT with mirror-less bodies and lenses appropriately scaled to match the sensor size yet both the same price, a lot of MFT users would still not trade to full frame, because MFT size and weight with 'enough' quality outweighs maximum quality + extra size and weight as the penalty for getting that on full frame.

This is the current state of the art:
http://home.comcast.net/~NikonD70/Charts/PDR.htm#OMD%20EM-5,D700

EM-5 16MP excellent dynamic range Vs D800 36MP even better dynamic range

Good reasons to go to full frame if the price was comparable but size and weight would/should weigh heavily on the decision.

If you have an A4 printer... no point in full frame.
If you have an A3 printer.... hmmm... have to think about that.
If you have an A2 printer its full frame all the way.

If you dont print (and a lot do not) full frame is overkill, but to be frank so is an EM-5.

CharlesB58 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,124
Re: Why insist on FF format?

kelly15 wrote:

There is no reason at all, unless you are a pro, and a very spacialized pro.
The quality of m43 is more than what is really needed for any kind of use.
Which is the reason to click at 12800 ISO?
Which is the reason to enlarge the screen to 1:1?

Look at the pictures you may take with the 45 and 75 oly, with the 25, 7/14 pana and so and compare them with the pictures you took at the film era.
No comparison.

Of ourse if you decide to walk heavy and bulky, to spend more money for nothing ( or so), you can do that, but you loose the possibility to have you camera set always with you with a quality level which is a dream.

Listen to me, in 3/4 years FF will disappear or limited to studio professional work only.

Ciao

Why make a post like this? Insecure? Need to tell other people how to practice photography? Clueless as to why people, other than pros, choose FF?

What needs to disappear are people who resort to turning a wonderfully diverse medium/hobby like photography into some sort of competition about what format/gear/brand is better than another.

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T3 Forum Pro • Posts: 21,254
DOF

kelly15 wrote:

There is no reason at all, unless you are a pro, and a very spacialized pro.
The quality of m43 is more than what is really needed for any kind of use.
Which is the reason to click at 12800 ISO?
Which is the reason to enlarge the screen to 1:1?

Look at the pictures you may take with the 45 and 75 oly, with the 25, 7/14 pana and so and compare them with the pictures you took at the film era.
No comparison.

Of ourse if you decide to walk heavy and bulky, to spend more money for nothing ( or so), you can do that, but you loose the possibility to have you camera set always with you with a quality level which is a dream.

Listen to me, in 3/4 years FF will disappear or limited to studio professional work only.

Ciao

I shoot APS-C, FF, and m4/3. m4/3 is great to have if you want a compact system, but it still can't outsmart the rules of physics when it comes to rendering shallower DOF. The same limitation applies to APS-C. That's why I'll still always have a FF body in my camera collection.

Just go look at Scott Schuman "The Sartorialist" blog, http://www.thesartorialist.com/ , where he uses a Canon 5D and a 50mm f/1.4 to shoot people on the street. Thanks to the shallow depth of field and excellent background blur that a full frame sensor can provide, he is able to achieve subject isolation quite easily, even on the busy, cluttered streets of New York...something that you just can't match with the equivalent focal length on smaller formats.

A few of Scott Shuman's on-the-street shots, done with a 5D MKI and 50/1.4, on the busy and cluttered streets of NYC, and yet with a FF camera in hand, he has no problem giving his subjects the "pop" that they deserve:

You have to pick the right tool...or the optimum tool...for the job. Picking the right format is no different. So whether you're a studio pro, or a wedding photographer, or just want to shoot your kids with great subject isolation and great background blur, the format you choose can certainly make an impact. There is no "one-size-fits-all", and that applies to sensor formats, too.

With FF cameras getting smaller, and less expensive, I think more people will be using FF in the future, not fewer . A Canon 5D MKII can be bought for $1900. Buy this time next year, I expect FF DSLRs to be available for even less than that. If you really think that in 3 or 4 years, FF will "will disappear or limited to studio professional work only," you are a complete, utter fool.

There's room for all of these formats. Why limit yourself to just one format?

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RJPeter Regular Member • Posts: 362
Re: Why insist on FF format?

kelly15 wrote:

There is no reason at all, unless you are a pro, and a very spacialized pro.
The quality of m43 is more than what is really needed for any kind of use.
Which is the reason to click at 12800 ISO?
Which is the reason to enlarge the screen to 1:1?

Look at the pictures you may take with the 45 and 75 oly, with the 25, 7/14 pana and so and compare them with the pictures you took at the film era.
No comparison.

Of ourse if you decide to walk heavy and bulky, to spend more money for nothing ( or so), you can do that, but you loose the possibility to have you camera set always with you with a quality level which is a dream.

Listen to me, in 3/4 years FF will disappear or limited to studio professional work only.

Ciao

Most photographers, non pros and maybe some pros can get good enough results with less than 'full frame'.
But that is a lot different than FF disappearing.

Rather than spending your time making silly predictions, why don't you just get on with what you enjoy and not bother about other gear that you find unsuitable.

Until m4/3 is capable of follow focus at a high level, there are many situations where it will not replace many larger format cameras.

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cameron2 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,432
Re: People never learn

cs hauser wrote:

In the mid 2000s, Olympus SLR fanatics were saying the exact   same   thing about Full Frame SLRs . Eight years later... tell me exactly which of those two has disappeared?

Neither. We still have Olympus fanatics and full frame cameras

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Bhiromography
Bhiromography New Member • Posts: 24
Re: Why insist on FF format?

Well, I only insist on NEX-9.

I mean to say for Full Frame Sensor + Mirrorless combination, not about DSLR nor DSLT.

Since there is phase detection AF on the chip, and there is a good OLED EVF (which is supposed to get better), then there is no need for any mirror.

I have 30+ MF lenses modified for 4/3 mount and now I hope to have the NEX-9 for all my lenses.

Everyone has his own purpose on buying things.

Best regards,

GodSpeaks
GodSpeaks Forum Pro • Posts: 13,785
Re: Why insist on FF format?

kelly15 wrote:

Listen to me, in 3/4 years FF will disappear or limited to studio professional work only.

You really think so? The recent introduction of so many FF cameras would seem to say otherwise.

And why do you care anyway? Find a camera/sensor size that appeals to you and does what you want and be happy. Do not fret over what other people may be using.

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Paul De Bra
Paul De Bra Forum Pro • Posts: 12,590
They are all arbitrary. "Full" frame means nothing special.

It just happened that 35mm became a very popular film format and that as a result of that it became a standard for cameras and lenses also in the digital age. But it is just as arbitrary as any other format. There is nothing "optimal" about any format because every format has its own strengths and weaknesses, in film as well as in digital.

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forpetessake
forpetessake Veteran Member • Posts: 4,954
Re: Why insist on FF format?

iv) Lenses: I have plenty of FF primes that resolve at least 60 l/mm fully open, where are m4/3 lenses with 120 l/mm wide open?

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