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Author Topic: making a case for that crop body camera  (Read 6191 times)

chauncey

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making a case for that crop body camera
« on: February 02, 2013, 02:04:05 PM »
A crop camera body utilizes the center portion of a full frame camera's FOV using the same lens, but...according to Canon's MTF characteristics,
 that's precisely where most lenses are at their best.
Therefore that crop camera only gives you the very best of that lens.
If you need a larger image in a landscape scenario...photomerge is a no-brainer, just use a longer lens.

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making a case for that crop body camera
« on: February 02, 2013, 02:04:05 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 03:27:09 PM »
How does using the best part of the lens help if I need to shoot at ISO 6400?   :-\
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Don Haines

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2013, 08:58:34 PM »
Unless you have really good Lglass on the camera, your APS-C sensor just may be out-resolving your lens.... in which case you loose the advantage of greater pixel density.

To me, the true advantage of APS-C is that you can make the lenses smaller and less expensive than FF lenses and you end up with a smaller and less expensive camera system.... the problem is that as sensor densities have increased they are now exceeding the resolution of the inexpensive lenses.... to get all the possible performance you can out of an APS-C camera you need to put the big glass on it.... and you have just shot down the weight and price advantages....

It's a more extreme example, but let's compare a FF DSLR to a point/shoot. Forget about the sensor..... it's the lens that we are looking at... A nice and expensive L lens can resolve to, say, 50 megapixels, and the P/S lens can resolve to 5 megapixels (not real numbers... made up for example and in the right ballpark).  At some point in time the p/s cameras passed the 5 Mp mark.... they did not stop there, they kept on going till they got to 16 or 18 Mp.... They are not 3 or 4 times sharper than the 5Mp camera because they are limited by the lens..

This is the tipping point where APS-C is now.... the sensors are starting to out-resolve the glass... we can no longer say that twice as many pixels makes it 1.414 times as sharp (square root of 2), it might only make it 1.1 or 1.05 times as sharp.....

With FF cameras, the sensor is still not as good as a nice Lglass lens.

All this is without taking into account the obvious high ISO / dynamic range advantages of FF.

So to conclude, the advantage of APSC is to use smaller and less expensive lenses at a cost of image quality, yet if you "utilizes the center portion of a full frame camera's FOV using the same lens" you have lost that low cost advantage.
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neuroanatomist

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2013, 09:16:39 PM »
+1

The real 'case for that crop body camera' compared to FF is that it's cheaper than FF.  That's not a slam on crop bodies - affordability is very important in the real world!
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pdirestajr

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2013, 11:08:48 PM »
I disagree with some of the points above with the APS-C big advantage being mostly about price.

When I bought my 7D, I was choosing between it and the 5DII. I chose the 7D over the 5DII because I felt, for me,  it was a better "camera" overall. Since then I have added a 5DII to my kit (actually paid less for it than my 7D during a Canon refurb sale).

I don't have any EF-s lenses as I have multiple bodies in my kit.

I chose the 7D for the better Ai Servo focus system, pop-up speedlite commander (which I use all the time), viewfinder grid/ level, custom functions, better video integration...

I won't disagree that the 5DII has better RAW image quality/ high ISO overall, because it does, but that is the only thing it does better that the 7D. I use my 5dII personally more.

Professionally I actually use my 7D  way more than my 5DII- I shoot a lot of product photography for packaging/ marketing/ PR. The majority of my professional photography (I'm a toy/ CE designer) is done with a 100mm macro and 2 430EXII Speedlites. This kit is super small and quick with just a 7D. I don't use my 7D at high ISO levels so I don't care about that "issue", and my photos don't print at 100%, so again you don't see all that "noise" EVER. I also like the crop the 7D does to my photo in camera (I'm not shooting 1:1 macro) since I want a little more DOF while filling as much of the frame as possible.

I also will take my 7D to the park as a "sports" camera to capture my 2yr old daughter. She is super fast :)

« Last Edit: February 02, 2013, 11:24:44 PM by pdirestajr »
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neuroanatomist

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2013, 11:26:33 PM »
I disagree with some of the points above with the APS-C big advantage being mostly about price.

When I bought my 7D, I was choosing between it and the 5DII. I chose the 7D over the 5DII because I felt, for me,  it was a better "camera" overall.

Exactly - the 7D is a better 'overall camera' than the 5DII - and it's cheaper (at least based on Canon's pricing), because it's an APS-C body. 

Put it another way - to get a camera that exceeds the 'overall' performance (considering not just IQ, but AF, build, etc.) of the 7D, a year ago you needed to buy a 1-series body.  Today, you could get something as 'cheap' as a 5DIII to beat the 7D...and that's twice the cost.  It's not that the performance aspects that make the 7D a great camera aren't available in cameras with larger sensors - they are, it just costs a lot more to get them. That's what I mean by the APS-C advantage being lower cost.

Like you, I had a 7D and 5DII, and used the former for birds, wildlife, and for my 4 year old's gymnastics.  The 5DII's AF wasn't up to the task.  But now that I have the 1D X, the 7D is relegated solely to gathering dust and hoping the 1D X breaks so it can fulfill its one remaining function - backup camera.
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Don Haines

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2013, 11:40:20 PM »
I disagree with some of the points above with the APS-C big advantage being mostly about price.

"So to conclude, the advantage of APSC is to use smaller and less expensive lenses at a cost of image quality"

When I go hiking I carry a 60D with an 18-200 lens. That lens has to be about the worst lens that canon makes, but I carry it. This is the smaller part..... I could bring the 5D2 and some big Lglass and get nicer pictures, but it would be too big and heavy for me. "Smaller and lighter and with me" beats "bigger and better and sitting on a table at home" any day of the week.
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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2013, 11:40:20 PM »

Plamen

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2013, 12:43:55 AM »
A crop camera body utilizes the center portion of a full frame camera's FOV using the same lens, but...according to Canon's MTF characteristics,
 that's precisely where most lenses are at their best.
So far, correct.
Quote
Therefore that crop camera only gives you the very best of that lens.
Now, this is incorrect because your just ignored the fact that the image from a crop camera has to be enlarged 1.6 times more.

See this and this. It is about center performance; the FF advantage in the corners still exists (most of the time) but decreases.

Menace

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2013, 01:08:28 AM »
I disagree with some of the points above with the APS-C big advantage being mostly about price.

When I bought my 7D, I was choosing between it and the 5DII. I chose the 7D over the 5DII because I felt, for me,  it was a better "camera" overall. Since then I have added a 5DII to my kit (actually paid less for it than my 7D during a Canon refurb sale).

I don't have any EF-s lenses as I have multiple bodies in my kit.

I chose the 7D for the better Ai Servo focus system, pop-up speedlite commander (which I use all the time), viewfinder grid/ level, custom functions, better video integration...

I won't disagree that the 5DII has better RAW image quality/ high ISO overall, because it does, but that is the only thing it does better that the 7D. I use my 5dII personally more.

Professionally I actually use my 7D  way more than my 5DII- I shoot a lot of product photography for packaging/ marketing/ PR. The majority of my professional photography (I'm a toy/ CE designer) is done with a 100mm macro and 2 430EXII Speedlites. This kit is super small and quick with just a 7D. I don't use my 7D at high ISO levels so I don't care about that "issue", and my photos don't print at 100%, so again you don't see all that "noise" EVER. I also like the crop the 7D does to my photo in camera (I'm not shooting 1:1 macro) since I want a little more DOF while filling as much of the frame as possible.


I also will take my 7D to the park as a "sports" camera to capture my 2yr old daughter. She is super fast :)

+1
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Menace

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2013, 01:12:49 AM »
I recently sold my 7d but am seriously considering buying another as a back up body as well as when extra reach is required.
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bycostello

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2013, 01:14:50 AM »
+1

The real 'case for that crop body camera' compared to FF is that it's cheaper than FF.  That's not a slam on crop bodies - affordability is very important in the real world!

+1

chauncey

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2013, 06:51:43 AM »
Price/cost of gear...when one uses a 1DsIII and nothing but "L" glass, gear cost isn't a major consideration, quality of the print is a consideration.

Image size...that crop body image taken with multiple exposures and photomerged to the field of view of the FF camera magically turns into about a 46 MP image.

That crop body will put more pixels on target, birds in flight or that child playing BB in the gym, than will that FF camera, pixels on target determines IQ.

I would submit that nobody in our viewing audience could discern whether a print was made from a crop camera or a FF camera,  assuming reasonable print size.

neuroanatomist

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2013, 07:22:30 AM »
That crop body will put more pixels on target, birds in flight or that child playing BB in the gym, than will that FF camera, pixels on target determines IQ.

Pixels on target is clearly not the sole determinant of IQ.  If it was, the 7D should produce noticeably sharper images than a 1D X or 5DIII cropped to the same FoV - yet, at low ISO the IQ is quite similar, and at high ISO the cropped FF image is superior. 

In 'focal length limited' situations, the only advantage of more pixels on target is just that - more pixels.  If the fewer MP of the cropped FF image are sufficient for the desired output (e.g., a reasonable sized print), the APS-C body doesn't offer any advantage except that it cost less to get that same IQ.

As Don points out, the lower weight of some crop bodies, and the lower weight and smaller size of lenses with a smaller image circle, can also be an advantage.
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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2013, 07:22:30 AM »

steven kessel

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2013, 09:06:55 AM »
My passion is wildlife photography and my prime lens is the 100-400 4.5-5.6 L IS.  I often have to do a significant amount of cropping even at 400mm in order to get useable images.  The more I crop the more I have to contend with noise.

My two bodies are a 7D and a 5D Mark iii.  Each has its advantages and I use both of them a lot.  The 7D obviously gives me meaningfully greater reach.  But, for me, it produces noisier images than the Mark iii.  So much so that I generally shoot with considerably lower ISO on the 7D than on the Mark iii.  The 7D also has a much slower, and for me, considerably less accurate autofocus than the Mark iii.  I get far more blurry and useless photos with my 7D.

I've wound up using the 7D only at times where I really need the extra reach, where the lighting is bright, and where I'm not too worried about objects in motion.  For all other shoots it's my Mark iii.

Plamen

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2013, 09:24:10 AM »
That crop body will put more pixels on target, birds in flight or that child playing BB in the gym, than will that FF camera, pixels on target determines IQ.

Most of the time, it puts less. You put more pixels on target only when you do not have high mp FF body (D800 and all that the future will bring), and need to crop a lot. I do not have a single photo taken with my FF body which is cropped more that just to do small corrections.

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Re: making a case for that crop body camera
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2013, 09:24:10 AM »