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Does Size make a Difference ?
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rocknice2


Feb 21, 2010, 8:38 PM
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Does Size make a Difference ?
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I'm looking into a new camera that will ake HD Vid, not necessarily at 1080 but 720 would do. I looked at a sleek, a compact and a larger camera but not Dslr.





Ones like these but not specifically these.

The guy in the store blew me away when he told me that they all take the same quality of picture. The only difference is that the larger lenses will that a better pic at lower light conditions.
I thought this odd but realized that I was still thinking film [larger film = better resolution], but according to the salesman the sensor chip is the same for all these cameras [except Dslr's] so is he correct.
I guess it can come down to the quality of the lens.

So what do you guys think Does Size make a Difference?

This will be my only camera taken on vacation , climbing trips and up climbs.


JasonsDrivingForce


Feb 22, 2010, 7:50 AM
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Re: [rocknice2] Does Size make a Difference ? [In reply to]
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The salesman either lied or was misinformed. The G series Canon cameras generally have a 1/1.7 " sensor which is bigger than the two compact cameras you showed but nowhere near as big a sensor in even an entry level DSLR.

Typically, the larger the sensor or more specifically the larger each pixel on the sensor is, the better the camera handles noise. The Canon G series are known for doing a great job with noise in low light situations. The two compacts you showed are terrible for pictures in low light situations.

Here is a review of one of them.

http://www.dpreview.com/...s/q209grouplongzoom/

Now donít get me wrong the G11 is a fine camera. It takes excellent still photos for a camera in its price range. However, the real issue is that it only takes 640x480 video. If you want HD video then Canon really doesnít offer a sub $500 compact camera, with a good lens, and HD video right now.

What you might want instead is the Olympus E-PL1. It is a very small interchangeable lens camera with 720p video. It doesnít have all of the features that the Olympus E-P2 or Panasonic GF1 have. However, it is only $600 and when combined with the right lens(The 20mm F1.7 from Panasonic) you can take some amazing pictures and videos.



http://www.dpreview.com/previews/olympusepl1/

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/..._Digital_Camera.html

Here are some video samples that were taken with a Panasonic DMC-GF1 but could have been easily taken with the much cheaper E-PL1. Remember to hit the 1080p button on youtube if you have a fast connection.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTXcAOGpMp4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eCOcFXyGqb4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oCh5t15vIdw


(This post was edited by JasonsDrivingForce on Feb 24, 2010, 7:36 PM)


kennoyce


Feb 27, 2010, 10:42 AM
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Re: [rocknice2] Does Size make a Difference ? [In reply to]
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Like Jasonsdrivingforce said, the sensor size is the important thing to consider. The larger the sensor is the better the quality will be. Really the most important thing is the pixel density. You want to have the lowest pixel density for the highest quality, lowest noise photos. I would assume this also correlates to video since the pixel size does matter. If you take a look at dpreview.com, you can see both the sensor size and the pixel density for any camera worth buying.

So to sum it up, yes size does matter, but not necessarily the size of the camera, just the size of the sensor.


jeepnphreak


Feb 28, 2010, 9:32 AM
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Re: [rocknice2] Does Size make a Difference ? [In reply to]
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I got one of these for my wife last year and it work very well and takes good pics in most light.
it shock resistant.
water reststant
and dust proof

http://www2.panasonic.com/..._7000000000000005702


pico23


Mar 10, 2010, 10:54 PM
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Re: [JasonsDrivingForce] Does Size make a Difference ? [In reply to]
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Actually the EP1 and EP2 are dogs.

Don't get me wrong, I am always looking for smaller cameras as alternatives to point and shoots, but at this time (read what I said not add words), the micro 4/3s cameras are crap.

The Panasonic GF1 is decent, and the best of the bunch.

I'm not being negative to Olympus (I actually really like olympus), I was actually VERY seriously looking at the EP2 just a few weeks ago. Had some knowledgeable people not talked me out of it I'd be $800 poorer right now, and not be happy.

The bottom line is these cameras while definitely better in IQ than a digital compact (aka. point and shoot) are not superior all around.

As far as the original question:

The G11 shares the same sensor as the S90, and it's the same size as the LX3 sensor. All are among the biggest in digital compact sensors.

I believe the salesman was talking about the lens aperture, which is faster on many cameras than the relatively slow G11 (still fast, just not breath taking).

Also the G11 and S90 don't have HD video, I believe 640x480.

Anyway, I've really spent a lot of time over the last 2 months trying to find the ideal digital compact or micro 4/3s, to this point nothing suits my needs.

The G11 is big, the S90 lacks any sort of optical viewfinder, and both are a lot of money for what are still cameras that ideal are used under ISO 400. Plus, I played with both in hand, the S90 shutter button is wrong, and the G11 has no place to place my thumb. Both of course, along with the LX3 offer RAW format output, which will gain you a little headroom in both noise reduction, color gamut and overall resolution (lines of resolution, not image size).

The Micro 4/3s just have a slew of minor issues that keep them from being real options (Samsung by the way also has a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera called the NX10 which has significantly better IQ than the micro 4/3s). And no, I'm not claiming no one should buy these cameras, but don't expect them to be fully finalized products for a few more cycles.

Finally, while sensor size can be overplayed and misunderstood, just like with film, generally bigger sensors are better. However, this isn't absolute. For instance I'd rather have 20MP in a small sensor that I am using for landscapes and portraits but have 10MP in a big sensor that I am using for shooting indoor sports.

Noise is vastly over rated. Those shooting landscapes, portraits, and studio work probably never go above ISO 250, but everyone makes a final decision on a camera based on high ISO noise.

It would be foolish for to pick a D3 over a D3X if you were mostly shooting at the lower end of the ISO range.


pico23


Mar 10, 2010, 11:04 PM
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Re: [kennoyce] Does Size make a Difference ? [In reply to]
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kennoyce wrote:
Really the most important thing is the pixel density. You want to have the lowest pixel density for the highest quality, lowest noise photos. I would assume this also correlates to video since the pixel size does matter. If you take a look at dpreview.com, you can see both the sensor size and the pixel density for any camera worth buying.

Since my other post was pretty long, let me clarify this briefly.

For HIGH ISO shooting lower pixel density is better.

For low ISO shooting higher pixel density is generally better.

The two might have a middle point but generally you get one or the other (hence the D3 and the D3X)

I say generally because there is a point where too many pixels in a given space (density) will erase any advantage of adding more pixels. Canon proved this with the G10. Great camera at base ISO that rivaled a DSLR, but once you got above ISO 200 things fell apart really fast.

The G11 took a step back (after Panasonic and Nikon started the trend) and said, "why not reach a mid point, a little lower IQ at low ISO but better IQ through the range."


JasonsDrivingForce


Mar 11, 2010, 5:12 AM
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pico23 wrote:
Actually the EP1 and EP2 are dogs.

Don't get me wrong, I am always looking for smaller cameras as alternatives to point and shoots, but at this time (read what I said not add words), the micro 4/3s cameras are crap.

Just curious but what is it that the Olympus cameras are missing or did wrong? From what I have seen they are usable to ISO 1600, they can use just about any lens ever made, they have in body image stabilization that even works with legacy lenses, they shoot extremely good 720p video, the EP2 has a viewfinder, and the EP2 is supposed to have decent AF.

Was there something else you were looking for?

So if all of those cameras didn't fit your needs what did you end up with?


pico23


Mar 15, 2010, 3:58 AM
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The EP2 certainly looks better, but the fact is even the flagship E-3 (getting a bit long in the tooth) 4/3s camera doesn't do well above ISO 800.

Secondly, the lens collection is awful. And it requires a whole new set of lenses. if they could make it work flawlessly with existing electronic coupled lenses I'd be more interested.

Yeah, 20mm f/1.7 sounds nice, but that is really like a 40mm f/4. Here is what I mean it's a 2X crop factor, and while more light gets to the sensor (a good thing) from the 1.7, the DOF is more like f/4.

There is pros and cons to this. It means poor ability to control DOF, but it also means more DOF per f/stop compared to 35mm or APS-C. So neither a positive nor negative, but something to consider.

The EP also has much to much menu diving. There should be more external controls. The AF isn't all that great, but I'm ok with that. The issue is it seems to not be particularly accurate

The lenses on the Olympus are much smaller than Panasonic, this is good. But the Panasonic bodies are IMO somewhat better.

However, why Panasonic went with OIS vs sensor shift is beyond me. It's imposible to make a compact lens with OIS, and the whole point of 4/3s is smaller bodies and lenses do to the lack of a mirror box.


All in all these are definitely nice options if you have no investment in SLR type systems.

Me, I'm sticking with my DSLR/SLR/645 setup. The size of my system is fairly good, between Nikon, Pentax, and the Pentax 645 system I have nearly everything I need from 10mm up to 300mm. Adding a 4th system into it makes no sense unless everything is perfectly sorted out.


JasonsDrivingForce


Mar 15, 2010, 5:47 AM
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pico23 wrote:
The EP2 certainly looks better, but the fact is even the flagship E-3 (getting a bit long in the tooth) 4/3s camera doesn't do well above ISO 800.

Cool, thanks for your response. Those are all very good points. I wasn't neccessarily thinking of it from the perspective of replacing a DSLR. I agree. It definitely is not there yet.


JasonsDrivingForce


Mar 15, 2010, 1:04 PM
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What Nikon camera are you currently using?

I wonder what it would take to get Nikon or Canon AF lenses to auto focus on m4/3s? If you made an adapter with the electrical contacts and reverse engineered the coding I wonder if it could do it?


pico23


Mar 16, 2010, 12:31 AM
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My cameras: Nikon F100 (film), D300, D1H. Pentax D, K10D (X2) my workhorse, (K-7 within the next 2 months), PZ-1P (film), Program Plus (film) and KX (film). Pentax 645N (MF film).

I only have 3 lenses for the Nikon system all bigger telephotos (f/1.8 to f/2.8) that I probably wouldn't use on a M4/3s system. I only bought into it because it was a cheaper route for me to go for long glass at the time, and I always loved the F100 so I picked it up for shigiggles. Amazing camera that was built to last and fit my ethos of small and durable. Too bad I'll never actually use it!! Still besides the F6 I think it was the finest weather sealed auto focus SLR ever made (the Pentax LX would be the finest non AF compact weather sealed film SLR ever made).

I really don't shoot much 35mm film anymore, so most of the above film cameras are merely collectibles (although I do try to put a roll or two through each of them a year). All my film is now run through the 645 system which still rivals a $8000 "full frame" digital for about $7500 less (that is a lot of film, especially when I process the B&W myself). Pentax and Nikon are actually quite similar provided you stay out of the menus. Since I shoot mostly manual in RAW this isn't a problem for me, set my stuff once and forget about it then it's just a matter of turning the control wheels and muscle memory for the AF button!


(This post was edited by pico23 on Mar 17, 2010, 12:13 AM)


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