**Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**

Started 11 months ago | Discussions
OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**
1

Thanks for the post, Arnoud.

It’s nice that you’re satisfied with your example. At the end of the day, the level of image quality one’s prepared to accept is entirely a personal thing.

Cheers…

OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re: *Some of my FZ330 Examples*

Thank you.

Dale108
Dale108 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,453
Re: Pentax Q in Africa
2

In 2012 had the great opportunity to travel to W Africa for work.  The Pentax Q was along for it's portability and had interchangeable lenses.

Dale

Stevie Boy Blue wrote:

When we handle any bridge camera the size of the FZ300, we could be forgiven for thinking that its image sensor is much larger than it actually is. We may even hear the widely bandied term ‘postage stamp’ sensor in relation to these cameras, which again gives the wrong impression of the average size chip found in most. In reality, the postage stamp analogy overeggs things considerably here.

Even when we discover that the sensor in the FZ300 and largely most other bridge models is actually a mere 1/2.3’’ diagonally from corner to opposite corner, or that its dimensions amount to a total of just 6.17 x 4.55 mm, we may still not initially comprehend just how small that is in relation to the full size (35mm) sensors found in overall more expensive DSLRs/ILCs.

Even most illustrations we see don’t really drive home why the tag ‘pinhead’ sensor is actually more appropriate a label than postage stamp.

So, to gain more perspective in visual terms, pop both of your thumbs together end to end, nail to nail (as shown in my illustration below) and imagine the larger rectangle outline depicts the edges of the full frame. Study it for a moment and, as a way of balancing out differences between thumb sizes of small, medium and larger readers, imagine you have an old 35mm film negative covering the whole rectangle. Got it? Yep! That’s how big a full frame digital SLR sensor is.

In comparison, now study your little fingernail and imagine the size of the small rectangle drawn in the same illustration. It equates to no more than half the size of the nail and represents the image recording area of the 1/2.3 sensor. That’s how small the average sized bridge camera sensor is.

Now look at my second illustration and note how many 1/2.3 sensors you could roughly fit into a full frame version (around 30) and you’ll see why the term pinhead is more appropriate than the postage stamp label. You’ll note that I’ve also included outlines of 1inch and M4/3rd sensors for further comparison of size in relation to both full frame and 1/2.3 varieties.

I’d always known these sensors were small since I began using FZs in 2004, but it’s only during the last few years that I’ve paid more attention to their actual physical size and come to appreciate them all the more for it. Since then, my admiration for what they represent as a whole has increased substantially. To me, the pinhead sensor found in most FZ and similar cameras is a marvellous feat of engineering in terms of the image quality it can afford.

In my view, the pinhead sensor should be embraced, appreciated and celebrated as an extraordinary piece of technology often seen to punch well above its weight in terms of output. After all, cameras like the FZ300 can and do churn out some pretty impressive images, the quality of which can be much higher than we might initially anticipate based solely on specification of chip and processor.

So, if you’d care to join in my celebration of the pinhead sensor with either a comment or example images (or both), you’re more than welcome to contribute below.

PLEASE NOTE:If you’re posting photos, remember to change the heading appropriately so we can all see where they’ve been inserted. Note also that as this thread’s specifically in celebration of the 1/2.3 sensor, example photos from any camera donning the pinhead chip would be most appreciated and other makes and models beyond the Panasonic range, whether old or current, are very welcome, too.

Thank you in advance,

Kind regards and happy shooting to all...

 Dale108's gear list:Dale108's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 Olympus TG-5 Sony RX10 IV Pentax K-1 Panasonic Lumix DC-G9
OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re: Pentax Q in Africa

Thanks for the post, Dale.

I don’t recall the interchangeable lens model to which you refer, but it looks like it served you well. I especially like that mountain scene.

Cheers

Dale108
Dale108 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,453
Re: Pentax Q in Africa

Yes the Pentax Q has always been an interchangeable lens model.

Dale

Stevie Boy Blue wrote:

Thanks for the post, Dale.

I don’t recall the interchangeable lens model to which you refer, but it looks like it served you well. I especially like that mountain scene.

Cheers

 Dale108's gear list:Dale108's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 Olympus TG-5 Sony RX10 IV Pentax K-1 Panasonic Lumix DC-G9
Cyril Catt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,221
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**
2

In 2008 I found the diminutive Canon TX1 filled most of my needs. Only the size of a standard pack of cards, its smooth all-metal case with rounded edges, and a lens that retracts fully into the body, protected by a metal cover when switched off. It was the perfect pocket camera.

With a 1/ 2.5” 7.1MP sensor, in SuperMacro mode it can focus right down to the front of the lens…

This computer screen has about 3.72 dots per mm, so this picture is a 27.9 x magnification on my screen. Canon TX1 Super Macro mode

Notodontid (?) moth caterpillars on Eucalyptus leucoxylon. The caterpillars are about 20 mm long. Canon TX1

.. and its 39 to 390mm zoom can be increased 1.9x to 74 -741mm by an internal lens shift with minimal reduction in quality,,…

Statue of Christ on roof of Notre Dame de Paris (before fire) Right hand was missing. This is a crop of about 1/8th of the area of the original shot from a Canon TX1 still

Stockholm's Stadhuset (Town Hall) tower, with the golden triple crown emblem is about 2.4 km distant. The Riddarholmskyrkan (Knight's Islet Church) unusual filigree spire is about 1.6 km away. Canon TX1

Stockholm's Stadhuset (Town Hall) tower, with the golden triple crown emblem. Canon TX1

…whilst an additional x4 digital zoom can get everything in the frame at 1560mm without further deterioration from later cropping. Optical image stabilization is helpful for hand held shots at long zoom settings. Stills and videos at 16:9 or 4:3 ratio, and video with stereo sound, from which individual frames could easily be retrieved for stills. And it can also be used just as a sound recorder.

A frame from a Canon TX1 video clip. Shot from centre of the sideline

The articulated screen, though small (1.8”, 115,000 dots), and of low resolution, is useful for aiming above the heads of a crowd, around corners, or in crevices which an arm can get into - useful for examining parts of machinery that are otherwise out of sight. The 25 mm lens tube is also small enough to poke through the mesh of the chain link fences around sports fields, where larger cameras can’t go.

I modified a small slide viewer to fit over the screen to simulate a convenient eye level EVF, eliminating glare from washing out the screen, whilst the hand supporting the camera can steady it against my forehead.

Slide viewer slipped over LCD screen to provide a virtual EVF for eye level viewing with Canon TX1

Barquentine in Freemantle harbour 6 Mar2012 8.21pm. Canon TX1, 1/200s F4.5 ISO80 130mm equiv. ppd

Mdina, Malta, from Ta'Qali, 1.2km from nearest wall. 31 Oct.2010  Canon TX1.1/1500s F5.6 ISO320 741mm

-- hide signature --

However, by 2015, the TX1 was being outclassed by several other, albeit somewhat larger, small cameras, and a Lumix TZ60 replaced the TX1 - only for a few months, before being stolen! Unable to afford another TZ60 so soon, at Erik Ohlson’s suggestion I looked for a Casio, and bought an EX-ZR800 as a stop gap. Its remarkable versatility soon made it my go-to camera. With only a 1/ 1.7” 16MP sensor, its 25-450mm lens is both wider and has a longer reach than the TX1’s. A ClearViewer attachment which folds against the LCD when not in use, gives me the equivalent of an eye-level EVF.

Artificial forest in Singapore, handheld from 275 metres @ 25mm equivalent zoom setting with a Casio ZR800

Handheld candid photo of man seated on the walkway near the middle of the above picture at 275 metres (crop from a 2125 mm equivalent jpg. ) Casio ZR800

whilst its twin processors allow the merging of short bursts, either to extend its useable zoom reach, or, in company with its remarkable sensor-shift image stabilization, to provide excellent stability for hand-held shots from moving vehicles.

This timelapse from a taxi shows the variety of remarkable juxtapositions of activities often found in Japanese streets: family homes, market gardens, luxury car saleyards, office buildings, apartments, all in close proximity. Casio ZR800

A very fast frame rates, up to 1000 per second, can be used to slow down fast action (to analyse your golf swing?). Slower rates (from 1/10 seconds to 60 minutes between frames, can appear to speed up actions (so normal crowds appear to race about like demented penguins, or the sun completes a journey across the sky in just a minute or so) can be used for special effects.

Sidesaddle pillion rider. Xi'an , China

Family eBike Xi'an, China

It also permits merging of bursts in dim light to yield brighter images.

Water lilies and rustic footbridge. Open air theatre restaurant,Ho Chi Minh City 3/10s F3.5 ISO800 EV2

Closeup of distant stage performer playing a tune on a leaf 450mm, 1/10s, F5.9, ISO200

View of the stage over seated diners 25mm 1/8s, F3.5, ISO320

To have a second camera with a faster, wider, lens, for dimmer interiors, I had paired the TX1 with an LX3 and 18mm accessory lens, and the ZR800 with an LX7 and 18mm accessory lens. But in each case the combined bulk of the Lumix cameras an accessory lenses, added to different batteries and menus made the pairs awkward to use together.

So in 2019 I complemented the ZR800 with a Casio ZR5100, with similar size, battery, and menu as the ZR800, but a wider and faster 19-95mm F2.7-6.4 lens, and a slightly larger 1/ 7" sensor, better suited to easy travelling and rapid depolyment. A couple of its shots are shown below.

Mural of an Aboriginal youth. The new Beresford St. interchange station is built in the vicinity of an Aboriginal Corroboree site used until less than 200 years ago. Casio ZR5100

Station viewed from north west

So far as my needs go, these cameras have been most adequate, and far smaller, but also far more versatile than the kit I went about with sixty years ago! Casio 5100

--
Cyril

jlina
jlina Senior Member • Posts: 1,925
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**

Excellent selection Cyril! Hope you are doing well and thanks for sharing these. They look so fun! Leaf music!

-- hide signature --

jlina

Ainisru Regular Member • Posts: 189
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**
1

Wow, that one frame from the sports action is very usable, am quite amazed

 Ainisru's gear list:Ainisru's gear list
Sony RX100 III Canon EOS 5D Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 Nikon D800 Panasonic G85 +2 more
Cyril Catt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,221
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**

jlina wrote: Excellent selection Cyril! Hope you are doing well and thanks for sharing these. They look so fun! Leaf music!

Thank you , Jaqueline. Luckily, this (Australian) summer has been a lot wetter than the fiery previous one!

Such warm praise from a frozen State! Yes, that was quite some party: more of that evening on my galleries under Ho Chi Minh City, 2015, Casio ZR800 show what the ZR800 can do under oudoor artificial light.

-- hide signature --

Cyril

Cyril Catt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,221
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**
1

Ainisru wrote: Wow, that one frame from the sports action is very usable, am quite amazed

The MVI video format is convenient for stepping through each frame until you find one that is relevant and not blurred. Useful for hand held shots at long tele reach, when it's hard to avoid camera shake - and provides more chance of an unblurred image than a burst of only a few frames. Especially for 'grab shots' of moving subjects whose actions you couldn't predict, like this hang glider, about 150 metres away, above Newcastle beach (NSW, Australia).

Sure, with more time, and bigger, more costly equipment, you could do better. But it's the camera you have with you and can deploy in an instant that can grab opportunities like this, and mobile phone cameras still don't capture long tele shots.

Also, with the Casio ZR800 the wide scope of timelapse frame-rate allowed me to use it at about 2fps , then just hold the camera pointing out of a vehicle window automatically capturing all the passing scenery, whilst my attention could be on other things - such as a tour guide or taxi driver's commentary. So I could later review the trip, and if anything seemed worth a closer look, or warranted identifying, I could use Google's StreetView and a guide book or map to backtrack on a confusingly twisty bus or taxi route through an unknown city. It's quicker to step through dozens of stills than to watch a video of the whole journey repeated in realtime.

That also avoided the need to apprehensively hold the camera pointing through the window, holding my attention on the passing scenery, with my finger on the shutter button, hoping to spot something worth snapping, and usually missing the shot through inattention or slow reactions.

-- hide signature --

Cyril

Dale108
Dale108 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,453
Re: Nikon A1000
1

The Nikon A1000 is another pinhead sensor camera that is small and has >800mm eq zoom albiet with a slow lens at the long end.

Dale

Stevie Boy Blue wrote:

When we handle any bridge camera the size of the FZ300, we could be forgiven for thinking that its image sensor is much larger than it actually is. We may even hear the widely bandied term ‘postage stamp’ sensor in relation to these cameras, which again gives the wrong impression of the average size chip found in most. In reality, the postage stamp analogy overeggs things considerably here.

Even when we discover that the sensor in the FZ300 and largely most other bridge models is actually a mere 1/2.3’’ diagonally from corner to opposite corner, or that its dimensions amount to a total of just 6.17 x 4.55 mm, we may still not initially comprehend just how small that is in relation to the full size (35mm) sensors found in overall more expensive DSLRs/ILCs.

Even most illustrations we see don’t really drive home why the tag ‘pinhead’ sensor is actually more appropriate a label than postage stamp.

So, to gain more perspective in visual terms, pop both of your thumbs together end to end, nail to nail (as shown in my illustration below) and imagine the larger rectangle outline depicts the edges of the full frame. Study it for a moment and, as a way of balancing out differences between thumb sizes of small, medium and larger readers, imagine you have an old 35mm film negative covering the whole rectangle. Got it? Yep! That’s how big a full frame digital SLR sensor is.

In comparison, now study your little fingernail and imagine the size of the small rectangle drawn in the same illustration. It equates to no more than half the size of the nail and represents the image recording area of the 1/2.3 sensor. That’s how small the average sized bridge camera sensor is.

Now look at my second illustration and note how many 1/2.3 sensors you could roughly fit into a full frame version (around 30) and you’ll see why the term pinhead is more appropriate than the postage stamp label. You’ll note that I’ve also included outlines of 1inch and M4/3rd sensors for further comparison of size in relation to both full frame and 1/2.3 varieties.

I’d always known these sensors were small since I began using FZs in 2004, but it’s only during the last few years that I’ve paid more attention to their actual physical size and come to appreciate them all the more for it. Since then, my admiration for what they represent as a whole has increased substantially. To me, the pinhead sensor found in most FZ and similar cameras is a marvellous feat of engineering in terms of the image quality it can afford.

In my view, the pinhead sensor should be embraced, appreciated and celebrated as an extraordinary piece of technology often seen to punch well above its weight in terms of output. After all, cameras like the FZ300 can and do churn out some pretty impressive images, the quality of which can be much higher than we might initially anticipate based solely on specification of chip and processor.

So, if you’d care to join in my celebration of the pinhead sensor with either a comment or example images (or both), you’re more than welcome to contribute below.

PLEASE NOTE:If you’re posting photos, remember to change the heading appropriately so we can all see where they’ve been inserted. Note also that as this thread’s specifically in celebration of the 1/2.3 sensor, example photos from any camera donning the pinhead chip would be most appreciated and other makes and models beyond the Panasonic range, whether old or current, are very welcome, too.

Thank you in advance,

Kind regards and happy shooting to all...

 Dale108's gear list:Dale108's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 Olympus TG-5 Sony RX10 IV Pentax K-1 Panasonic Lumix DC-G9
Cyril Catt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,221
Re:Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras **

Have just been looking at the problems of getting a suitable case for a larger camera "FZ1000ii Case Math"

Beside adequate performance from 'pinhead' sensors, there's also something to be said for lugging only about a 1/4 kg instead of 3/4 kg or more, as well as easier deployment, or convenience for carrying in the palm of a hand, ready for every opportunity

-- hide signature --

Cyril

Jon_T
Jon_T Veteran Member • Posts: 5,614
Re:Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras **

Cyril Catt wrote:

Have just been looking at the problems of getting a suitable case for a larger camera "FZ1000ii Case Math"

Beside adequate performance from 'pinhead' sensors, there's also something to be said for lugging only about a 1/4 kg instead of 3/4 kg or more, as well as easier deployment, or convenience for carrying in the palm of a hand, ready for every opportunity

A camera like any other 'tool', use the correct tool for the job.

Hence why I have pocketables S110, SZ50, DSLR's and FF DLSR.

Also depends on one's IQ wanted/ needed for pictures use/ application.

 Jon_T's gear list:Jon_T's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 Canon PowerShot G15 Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Canon PowerShot S110 Leica C +16 more
Cyril Catt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,221
Re:Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras **

Jon_T wrote:

Cyril Catt wrote: Have just been looking at the problems of getting a suitable case for a larger camera "FZ1000ii Case Math"

Beside adequate performance from 'pinhead' sensors, there's also something to be said for lugging only about a 1/4 kg instead of 3/4 kg or more, as well as easier deployment, or convenience for carrying in the palm of a hand, ready for every opportunity

A camera like any other 'tool', use the correct tool for the job.                                    Hence why I have pocketables S110, SZ50, DSLR's and FF DLSR. ;-).                                Also depends on one's IQ wanted/ needed for pictures use/ application.

Very true, Jon. But this forum is highlighting 'Pinhead' sensor cameras' advantages, not their alternatives. I was only pointing out one of the externalities associated with larger cameras which are not so difficult for most 'pinhead' sensor models.

If the vast majority of photographers were not satisfied with the products of pinhead sensors they wouldn't be using their phone cameras, confirming Chesterton's aphorism that "if a job's worth doing, it's worth doing badly" - and the traditional camera manufacturers' production wouldn't have declined in recent years.

-- hide signature --

Cyril

OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re: Nikon A1000

Thanks Dale. Looks like you’ve had a few pinhead sensor cameras from various makers in your time.

Cheers…

OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re: **Celebrating ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras**

Thanks for the contribution, Cyril.

Some nice, colourful, vibrant examples you posted there.

Good commentary on your camera experiences, too.

Cheers and all the best…

OP Stevie Boy Blue Senior Member • Posts: 1,564
Re:Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras **
1

Indeed, Cyril. Another apparent saga seems to be developing over there. Rolleyes!

Mind you, I also own a FZ2000, which is even bulkier than the 1000 (2). It's a bit heavier, too!

I ended up having to buy quite a substantially sized bag for that camera, I’ll tell ya.

But you’re right in your second post: this thread’s about pinhead 1/2.3inch sensor models rather than their larger counterparts, so hopefully we’ll quickly get back on topic.

Cheers and happy shooting.

Jon_T
Jon_T Veteran Member • Posts: 5,614
Re:Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras **

Cyril Catt wrote:

Jon_T wrote:

Cyril Catt wrote: Have just been looking at the problems of getting a suitable case for a larger camera "FZ1000ii Case Math"

Beside adequate performance from 'pinhead' sensors, there's also something to be said for lugging only about a 1/4 kg instead of 3/4 kg or more, as well as easier deployment, or convenience for carrying in the palm of a hand, ready for every opportunity

A camera like any other 'tool', use the correct tool for the job. Hence why I have pocketables S110, SZ50, DSLR's and FF DLSR. ;-). Also depends on one's IQ wanted/ needed for pictures use/ application.

Very true, Jon. But this forum is highlighting 'Pinhead' sensor cameras' advantages, ...

Yes I know, and actually "this" topic's title is
"Extraneous matters for ‘Pinhead’ Sensor Bridge Cameras".

The main problem of that topic you referenced is 'not' due to the 'larger size' of the FZ1000 II, but the OP a novice that was not sure how to measure/ get camera measurements.

The post could have easily been for help/ recommendations on selecting a case for FZ80 or FZ300 (i.e., 'Bridge' pinhead camera), or a small/ belt type case for a ZS##/ TZ## "Pnhead Sensor Camera".

To me, there are lot more pertinent reasons for wanting a smaller Pinherad Sensor Camera than not have to get a case.

I was using pocketable/ compact 35mm cameras long before there were any digital cameras.

Size wise there's not a large difference between the FZ300 vs. FZ1000 II:

Also the newer Nikon P950 and P1000 "Pinhead Sensor Bridge Cameras" are larger than the FZ1000 II:

Cheers,
Jon

 Jon_T's gear list:Jon_T's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 Canon PowerShot G15 Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Canon PowerShot S110 Leica C +16 more
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