"Crop-ability" of images?

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dperez Regular Member • Posts: 392
"Crop-ability" of images?
3

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus.  A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor?  On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

Nikon D850
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drj3 Forum Pro • Posts: 11,311
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
10

If you are shooting with equivalent FOV then the camera with more pixels will have more detail on the target for better resolution, so the Nikon will have an IQ advantage.

Of course you could not handhold the Nikon 850 with a 600mm f4 (if you can handhold it) the same way you can handhold the Olympus 300mm f4 with one hand.

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Muster Mark Contributing Member • Posts: 588
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
3

I don't think you are missing anything. There is no free lunch here. Going smaller and cheaper you must give up something.

If you need more reach though, you could go for the 150-400 f4.5 on the Olympus. Still cheaper and smaller than the Nikon but you wouldn't need to crop as much as you would already have a narrower angle of view.

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joeletx Veteran Member • Posts: 3,639
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
1

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Thank you for saying this. Same DOF and same SS, compensated ISO. You get this right, unlike the others in the ever ragging on equivalent debates, four times amount of light, blah blah.

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor? On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

Yes, I think it is the advantage of having large sensor. If I look at the pixel density alone, then I can stay back further then the final crop having the same number of pixels would look the same with E-M1X shot. But I think lens resolving power and environment haze become factors.

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Pedagydusz Veteran Member • Posts: 5,721
Pixels-per-bird
3

A few years ago a member of thiese foruns(?) - I think it was in one of the Canon foruns(?) - coined the phrase "Pixels-per-bird", in the sense you present your idea.

In fact, what is of interest in the final stage of the image - viewing - is the number of "useful" pixels in the picture. That varies so much with so many factors, that it is difficult, or impossible, to find numerical rules for it.

PpB, in fact, depend on the lens FL, the size of the sensor, the pixel density (as stated above, that is one of the more important parameters), noise (if details are smeared larger size becomes irrelevant), even composition (if there are other elements, besides the main subject, of interest, it is different from one bird being photographed).

Of course, the same is valid for insects. So this is, indeed, a discussion of the Birds and the Bees!

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Bassam Guy Veteran Member • Posts: 3,027
EZR way

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor? On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

Of course, a sensor with more pixels, regardless of physical size, will have more "crop-ability".

Better to use area rather than a single dimension. No reason to go to all that math. The "close enough" ratio is 45mp / 20mp or 2.25:1.

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ahaslett
ahaslett Veteran Member • Posts: 8,866
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?

Correct every respect.  Might be interesting to compare the lens MTFs in lpph at those apertures.

Andrew

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bobn2
bobn2 Forum Pro • Posts: 69,811
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
6

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor? On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

The Nikon is a 45MP camera, the Olympus is a 20MP camera. That's about the long and short of it.

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Wu Jiaqiu
Wu Jiaqiu Forum Pro • Posts: 27,456
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
4

drj3 wrote:

If you are shooting with equivalent FOV then the camera with more pixels will have more detail on the target for better resolution, so the Nikon will have an IQ advantage.

Of course you could not handhold the Nikon 850 with a 600mm f4 (if you can handhold it) the same way you can handhold the Olympus 300mm f4 with one hand.

that's misleading to say the least, the fact you can hold a camera and lens with a single hand is irrelevant when you're taking some shots, do you actually use the camera like that? I could handhold a D850 and a 600mm and get shots, do i want to is the actual question

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Dennis Forum Pro • Posts: 20,441
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
2

dperez wrote:

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

With equivalent focal lengths to give you same relative magnification (same percentage of frame) the higher res sensor gives you more pixels "under" your subject.

Beyond that, you have issues of lens sharpness - the 600/4 is almost certainly capable of recording more detail. Even if you put it on a 24MP sensor, I'd bet on the 600/4. But countering that, you have technical issues - can you, as a photographer, capture sharp images ? Are you panning ? Using IS/VR ? You might have an easier time getting the most out of one system or the other. And will you even get to where the shot is with either kit ?

(I remember many years ago running across a Canon photographer shooting wildlife. I had a Minolta 400/4.5 at the time. He had a 500/4 and said that a number of photographers in his photo club were switching from the 600/4 to the 500/4 because the 600 was just such a beast to haul around and use).

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Muster Mark Contributing Member • Posts: 588
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
4

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor? On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

The Nikon is a 45MP camera, the Olympus is a 20MP camera. That's about the long and short of it.

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drj3 Forum Pro • Posts: 11,311
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
6

Wu Jiaqiu wrote:

drj3 wrote:

If you are shooting with equivalent FOV then the camera with more pixels will have more detail on the target for better resolution, so the Nikon will have an IQ advantage.

Of course you could not handhold the Nikon 850 with a 600mm f4 (if you can handhold it) the same way you can handhold the Olympus 300mm f4 with one hand.

that's misleading to say the least, the fact you can hold a camera and lens with a single hand is irrelevant when you're taking some shots, do you actually use the camera like that? I could handhold a D850 and a 600mm and get shots, do i want to is the actual question

Actually I have used the camera that way just to see if I could, but I do hold it with both hands when I want the image.  The purpose of the above image was a simple "a picture is worth a thousand words", to indicate that there are always compromises and an important factor is weight of the camera/lens.

I could probably handhold the D850+600mm f4 for a short interval of time to shoot a stationary target, but I would not be able to quickly move it for any BIF other than something like a gull or Canada goose.

Would I want to use a 600mm f4, no, photography would become too much like work, instead of fun.

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Pedagydusz Veteran Member • Posts: 5,721
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
2

Muster Mark wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

No, the criticism is correct, perhaps too harshly expressed. The ISO value does NOT enter the exposure definition. It is just a tool to make the image brighter or darker and compensate for a stronger or weaker exposure when viewing the image. But the OP would be entirely correct if he had wrote "so the brightness of the image is the same".

The misconception about the definition of "exposure" is widespread, even appears in texts that otherwise offer much credibility (to me, at any rate, for whatever the value of that is!)

Go outside and shoot a backyard bird. Same spot, same distance, same bird, both cameras.

On EACH sensor does the bird take up approximately the same percentage of the sensor? On the D850 image the bird’s head covers about 20% of the width of the sensor. Does the bird’s head cover the approximately the SAME 20% of the sensor on the M1X – within reason since one is a 3:2 sensor and the other is a 4:3 sensor?

If SO, the bird’s head is 20% of 5184 = 1037 px on the M1X and 20% of 8256 = 1651 px on the D850. Based on that, the subject in the D850 image has 60% more pixels available for cropping. What am I missing?

The Nikon is a 45MP camera, the Olympus is a 20MP camera. That's about the long and short of it.

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OP dperez Regular Member • Posts: 392
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?

Thanks for the replies...  And this isn't actually a fer-real test.  It's me trying to figure out what I have to give up if I go to Olympus from Nikon versus what I gain.

Yes, I've hauled around a 600/f4.  It stopped being fun about 20 yards in.  And I CANNOT hand-hold the thing.  Never could, and at my age I definitely can't now.  And it costs a ridiculous amount of money.

The question I was asked was essentially "Once I take the bird picture, and get it into Lightroom, and crop it down to the bird, WHICH camera is going to give me the most bird pixels so I can crop the least?"

In my test world, it's the D850.  In the REAL world, shooting a 600mm I'd have more bird pixels shooting the D500 with the 600 (900mm 35 EQ) followed by the M1X at 400mm (800mm 35 EQ)...

The other area of curiosity - (this one is my curiosity) is the mechanics.  I shot a Sony A9 II and an A7r III.  In both cases I found that when I put the camera to my eye, there was a delay before the EVF came on.  Since I'm watching a bird flying by, I'm used to putting the D500 to my eye, seeing the bird, and shooting.  With either Sony I was always behind the bird because of the delay.

Will this happen with the M1X or the E-M1 III?

Also, for birds going across my path, I found the viewfinder almost kept up.  The blackouts didn't bother me because I'm used to lots of mirror flapping around blackouts with the D500, so it didn't seem bad with either camera.  But it did seem to lag behind the bird a little.  I got some bird butts as the bird got ahead of me and flew out of the frame.

Will there be visible blackouts and viewfinder lag with the M1X or E-M1 III?

And last, the viewfinder and LCD resolution seem low.  I do a lot of close-up photography with the D850 and use the live view and focus stacking frequently.  It's 2.? MP LCD, which when I zoom in 4 or 5 times to get the most accurate focus, is adequate, but not great.  The M1X (and I think) the E-M1 III are both somewhere around 1.1 MP for the LCD and I'm concerned that I'd find it difficult to get detailed views when zoomed in for focusing.

I believe the E-M1 has focus stacking - will I be able to stack 15 or 25 or 70 or 150 (not all the time but occasionally) images?  And get the originals for rendering the stack elsewhere?

I'm THINKING about renting an M1X and 100-400 if I go to Florida this winter.  I'd have to get it delivered where I was so I could use it for a week in the swamps and see if it's worth leaving Nikon...

If I'm blown away Probably an M1X and E-M1 III and some lenses.  Probably NOT the $7500 150-400, but wide zoom, macro, long tele, and an equivalent of my 28-300 walk-around lens, though I don't know how good the quality is on the Zuiko ED 14-150 or 12-200...  If I recall, there are a couple features the E-M1 III has that the M1X doesn't but I don't see me using the M1X for Milky Way shooting...  I don't remember what the other things were, but what I read said they could be done with firmware so the M1X COULD be updated with them.

Dennis Forum Pro • Posts: 20,441
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?

You might want to repost that as a reply to your OP with a subject line of "additional questions from OP" or something along those lines ... or even a new thread. I suspect it won't get many eyeballs as a reply to my post.

(Unfortunately, I have no answers!)

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bobn2
bobn2 Forum Pro • Posts: 69,811
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
5

Muster Mark wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

I didn't criticise his understanding except for the meaning of 'exposure', which he got wrong. This misunderstanding is unfortunately common. As you say, if he was saying that he gets the same 'results' or lightness, then yes, he's right.

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bobn2
bobn2 Forum Pro • Posts: 69,811
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
6

Pedagydusz wrote:

Muster Mark wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

No, the criticism is correct, perhaps too harshly expressed.

I didn't mean it to be harsh. I was just playing with his 'right?'. If that came out as 'harsh', then I apologise to him for it.

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(unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 19,317
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?

bobn2 wrote:

Muster Mark wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

I didn't criticise his understanding except for the meaning of 'exposure', which he got wrong. This misunderstanding is unfortunately common. As you say, if he was saying that he gets the same 'results' or lightness, then yes, he's right.

I like this quote "The “Exposure Triangle,” as it is often referred to, is a handy way of interpreting the major components involved in the process of capturing an image.

Don

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ahaslett
ahaslett Veteran Member • Posts: 8,866
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?

Some answers.

Have a look at the Pro Capture function in the manual.

When shooting macro stacks with a mirrorless the Magnify function is useful (also for landscape).

Olympus cameras will shoot a focus stack but I’m not sure it can do that many images, have a look at the manual.

Andrew

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bobn2
bobn2 Forum Pro • Posts: 69,811
Re: "Crop-ability" of images?
2

Donald B wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

Muster Mark wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

dperez wrote:

More photographers who’s judgement I respect are talking about moving to Olympus. A question came up the other day and I’m trying to figure out the answer.

Nikon D850, 600mm f/4 versus M1X, 300mm f/4.

As I understand it - the lenses are the same equivalent - 600mm. The Nikon shoots at f/8 and ISO 3200 and 1/500. The M1X shoots at f/4 so the DOF is the same, and ISO 800 and 1/500, so the exposure is the same, right?

Wrong! Somewhere along the way you've picked up a wrong idea of what 'exposure' means. It does not mean how light or dark the image is. It means what is the light energy density at the sensor. It is determined by shutter speed, f-number and scene luminance. In your example, since the shutter speed and scene luminance are the same, but the f-number is two stops higher on the Nikon, it will have two stops less exposure. But it will make up for it by having four times the sensor area.

I think he was saying he puts the Nikon at f8 and gets the same results as the Oly at F4. This is correct. He has the Nikon shooting at ISO 3200 and the oly at ISO 800. I don't think your criticism of his understanding is warranted.

I didn't criticise his understanding except for the meaning of 'exposure', which he got wrong. This misunderstanding is unfortunately common. As you say, if he was saying that he gets the same 'results' or lightness, then yes, he's right.

I like this quote "The “Exposure Triangle,” as it is often referred to, is a handy way of interpreting the major components involved in the process of capturing an image.

Yes, I think that the 'triangle' is responsible for people thinking wrongly that the components of exposure are aperture, shutter and ISO. When invented by Bryan Peterson it was the 'Photographic Triangle'. Whatever the name, it's useless.

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Is it always wrong
for one to have the hots for
Comrade Kim Yo Jong?

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