It's the one thing that bugs me on this forum. That you can only aspire to full frame. That you can only aspire to the most expensive best of kit.
It does seem to get a little ridiculous sometimes, doesn't it?
It does indeed.
If one were to look at sales numbers, profitability and general trends in technology, a much better case could be made that full frame is the format that is heading toward oblivion.
Trend: Cell Phone Cameras – Research and development dollars are going into improving the sensors in cell phones, which has become the major feature differentiating the brands of cell phones. Cell phones are now the camera of choice for most of the population. Lessons learned in improving the quality of sensors for cell phones are much more applicable to APS-C and smaller sensors than to full frame sensors.
Trend: Mirrorless – In the mirrorless world, APS-C sensors are the big boys. Full frame mirrorless is a virtually non-existent niche market, but more and more manufacturers are turning to APS-C for their flagship mirrorless bodies.
Trend: Small DSLRs – Canon is at the leading edge here with the SL1. Whether or not other manufacturers follow is likely to depend on how successful they are. But, certainly it's an innovative approach that shows Canon is looking at ways to expand the appeal of their APS-C offerings.
Trend: Manufacturing Costs – APS-C remains cheaper to produce and the research dollars can be spread over a much broader base: EOS-M, SL1, Rebels, XXD and 7D. Canon only offers three full frame cameras and each has its own sensor.
Trend: Other Technologies – Software development is not standing still. Improvements in noise reduction, sharpness and resizing programming will further narrow the visible differences between APS-C and full frame.
Trend: Output – Already, most images live on computer screens. In fact, the vast majority of images probably live on cell phones. An iPad or similar tablet device is about the best you can expect for most of your images.
Trend: Output II – If a picture isn't living at 72-100 ppi on a tablet device, it's probably living in a self-published book, at a maximum size of about 11 or 12 inches (usually smaller) and with all the compromises of CMYK printing.
Trend: Output III – For that tiny fraction of images that finally end up as a print on someone's wall, the printing technology is also advancing and, like everything else, the emphasis is on getting the best possible output from APS-C and smaller format files.
I am not saying that full frame is dead or dying. But the truth is, if one wants to pursue this pointless argument, you need to look at all the trends, not just look at what camera manufacturers are doing as they try to capture a share of a relatively stagnant market.