Chip sizes - important?

1 reply [Last post]
tom hardwick
Joined: Apr 8 1999

On frame sizes it's worth remembering how "disjointed" the market already is: Canon has 1.6 X sensors while most other brands have 1.5 X. And the Olympus DSLR is a 2x. Takes you back to the Pen F, doesn't it? That was half frame, or a 2x factor.

Then the EOS 5 is "full frame", but the "top" Canon professional model, the EOS 1D series is, I believe, a 1.2 X sensor. All a bit confusing, huh? (Let alone the free-wheeling plethora of sizes of chip in (all manufacturers') point-and-shoots).

Thing is smaller chips require far smaller / cheaper / lighter lenses - just look at the zoom and speed on the Canon HV20. That uses a just-less-than 1"/3 chip. So apart from the D o F control, there's really no point in going for a 36 x 24 chip. I agree it's a historical dimension, but the 'everything in focus' of Panasonic Lumix photos, for example. just looks boring. Ah - but it has a 12x f/2.8 zoom, pretty impressive. And a salesman's delight.

The live view of the 40D is a real plus point over the Sony Alpha in my view, and I'm sure the tilt 'n' turn' 3" rear screens are waiting in the wings. Couldn't live without it on my Z1, so why should I be expected to live without it on my DSLR?

Do like the SSSS where the chip itself vibrates. I suppose you can't call it OIS, it's more MIS (mechanical image stabilisation), but it is a far nicer solution than the 'special' OIS lenses you have to buy with the Canon and Nikon. Frightening to think of the film plane tolerances that have to be maintained when the MIS and chip cleaning all get going.

Do Sony still use the Minolta dog-clutch drive to achieve auto focus? Tthe USM that Canon use is really far nicer in my view.

You can see I'm going to hold out that little bit longer. The 10D will just have to surfice for now, and I have a stills wedding booked for it this coming December. Last weekend the stills guy had two 20Ds and I had a good chat to him. We both agreed that our film cameras lasted years (often a decade) whereas our DSLRs were really only good for 2 years or so, such is the rate of change.


Joined: Jun 10 2002
tom hardwick wrote:
our DSLRs were really only good for 2 years or so, such is the rate of change.

Why? I have a 10D and ok I wouldn't mind something newer one (5D would be nice), but its still a fantastic camera, and I have taken thousands of pictures on it (counter has rolled over at least twice)

I don't really always agree with endless features, usually makes people take worse photos as they don't know how to use any of them and they are less likely to stray from the comfort of the green rectangle setting. In fact I could tell by the way the other people with DSLR's at a recent wedding were taking photos that none I saw knew how to /really/ use them and were taking party pics with no atmosphere at all.

You mention frame sizes as well. I was recently using a modern digicam of some make again at a wedding and it was horrid, yes they are much better than they were, and really quite amazing for the money but in terms of flexibility it was really rather slow and painful.

I don't have a need to change my camera for anything other than pose appeal. It wont suddenly transform my photos into better/worse than they already are! And its not like I'm chasing image formats. It will still be jpg/raw or whatever in a years time. (unlike hdv where upgrading may be necessary)