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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Cropped Sensors versus Full Frame
Showing posts 1 - 5 of 5, (reverse)
02/03/2013 12:32:41 AM · #1
I love a light kit...so although I just went full frame (D600), I am still on the fence whether that's the kit I want to carry hiking into the Grand Canyon in the spring.

I've considered going to Micro Four Thirds even...thinking how cool it would be to have a 100-300mm lens, on a 2x crop factor sensor like the OM-D or GH2, so light and giving me a 600mm effective focal length! But I've also come to appreciate the benefits of higher resolution--heck, I love the 20mp I get out of my little RX100 (very sharp, lots of detail) and that swayed me to go to FF and the 24mp D600.

Yet I still crave lightweight and compact. I could go for a M43 camera...but I'd have to buy the camera and lots of new lenses, I'd lose some resolution and of course it's a smaller sensor too.

Which finally brings me to my point...now there's the Nikon 3200 and 5200. 24 MP on APS-C, I can use my fairly light lens kit, or my 70-300, and get 450mm effective focal length. Like M43, these also have the benefit of the articulating screen, something I think would be really good for landscapes (where I often shoot from a low perspective).

My feeling is that I can get almost the same results as the 2x magnification in M43 just by cropping a APS-C 24mp sensor (since the m43 cameras are 16mp and below. Right? If I cropped to 16mp, what's my effective magnification? Feeling a bit "slow" now,..I am not sure how to calculate it...that's 2/3 size, does that give me another 1.5x magnification...for a total of 2.25x?

02/03/2013 02:28:38 AM · #2
For Hiking or traveling you want the lightest bit of kit you can have. Honestly since swapping out to the Micro 4/3rds I'm not looking back. I love the small lenses, body. Try it...
02/03/2013 02:59:12 AM · #3
I think if you wanted an additional 1.5x crop factor out of your 24MP frame, you'd have to crop down to 10.6MP instead of 16. I'm only guessing because my Nikon D800 has 36 MP, but when I attach a DX lens to it, it goes down to 16 MP, dividing the resolution by 1.5 on both horizontal and vertical.

I still think cropping down to 16 MP would be pretty darned close to what you're looking for, though. If I'm doing this math right, you have a DX lens which gives an effective 1.5x crop, plus cropping down to 16 MP would multiply in another (square root of) 1.5, so 1.5 x 1.224 is about 1.836--pretty close to 2x.

Wow now my head hurts. Hopefully someone else can check my math.
02/03/2013 03:23:39 AM · #4
Hard decisions. But just think how much harder if you could afford a porter...
02/03/2013 12:52:55 PM · #5
Well the decision is easier and cheaper if I just go with a lightweight SLR :) I already have a full set of lightweight lenses for that.

But I mostly posted because I'd like to know how to calculate the zoom/crop factor. And whether there's any advantage image wise of a true crop camera (M43) versus digital zoom. I suspect not.
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