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Crop Sensor Vs Full Frame: A Quick Guide

Rating: 4.00 based on 1 Rating
Jordan Younce
  By Jordan Younce
Crop Sensor Vs Full Frame: A Quick Guide www.sleeklens.com

In this video, we will be looking at the differences, pros, and cons of a full frame camera and a crop sensor camera. This is important to understand and geared towards those who are new to photography. It is also good to know the history of where these came from.

So, what is a full-frame camera? We need to know what this camera is if we are to understand what crop sensor camera is. A full frame camera has its origin in the olden days when they used to shoot films. The 35mm film was typically used and so Canon was the first manufacturer to come up with a digital sensor that was the size of 35mm film. That was kind of considered to be a full frame camera those days. So, when you think of a full frame camera, you just kind of think of a 35mm equivalent of film.

On the other hand, a crop sensor camera is basically a different variation of crop size inside a camera. What this does is that it makes the sensor smaller so it can fit in a smaller body so you can have a smaller, more compact version of a full frame. There are advantages and disadvantages of this but we will look into that as we progress.

Normally, if you are Canon user, the crop factor ranges between 1.3 and 1.6 depending on the make and the model. If you are a Nikon user, it is easy to figure out because it is usually around 1.5. Looking at our visual demo, you will see a photo that was taken with a full frame sensor. This is what we see using a 17mm of distance through the lens. When this is shot with a crop sensor as shown in the second visual demo in our video, a lot of information will be lost shooting at the same focal length. This gives you a basic demo of how small the sensor is if you think on the inside of the camera. The full frame sensor or camera has the size of the big box while the crop sensor has the size of the smaller box, so to say.

What are the disadvantages and advantages of the two?

When figuring out which one you should buy, it will be necessary to consider both the pros and the cons of the two sensors or cameras. First, we will use a visual demonstration of the wide angle use. If you are doing a lot of landscape stuff and want to have a lot of wide angle shots, you can get a full frame camera and a regular 24mm and you will likely have the same 18mm or a little bit less of what crop sensor would shoot. So, you kind of get wider angle used. It is therefore really useful obviously and real estate photography where you need to get the whole huge room and you don;t have a 10mm lens or something like that, you can shoot with a 16mm or 17mm lens and get the whole room. That is kind of advantages there.

Full frame sensor cameras are far more expensive while crop sensor cameras are less expensive because they are a smaller size. Normally the crop sensors are kind of a beginner and intermediate bodies. The depth of the field is kind of a negative though when it comes to full frame sensors. Usually, depending on the make and model, the full frame cameras are capable of giving you as much depth of field as you want. So, even if you shoot at f/22 on full frame, the whole image may not be as sharp as you like and you may have to do some focus stacking and stuff like that. But on a crop sensor camera, you will be able to get a lot of depth of field since the size of the sensor is so small. Everything from front to back on f/22 and sometimes even at f/32 will be extremely sharp.

A lot of people would want to shoot sports using crop sensor cameras because they offer more crop factor so you get a more zoomed-in look. Let’s take for instance where you want to shoot a football game and am all the way across the field with a full frame camera and I don’t have an 800mm, 6000 dollar lens, it will be a lot harder to get that reach. However, on a crop sensor camera, you get more reach even with half that sensor even with less desirable or less telephoto lens.

In addition, when it comes to pricing, full frame cameras need things like luxury glass and expensive lenses, especially if you want to get that reach and print size. This is especially important when it comes to photo printing because you get more pixels when you use a larger sensor thus giving you more data to print with. With a crop sensor camera, you still could go as large but this won’t give you a clear image as you would get with the full frame cameras.

Lastly, full frame cameras usually have a higher ISO performance than the crop sensor camera. This is due to more light coming in and being able to hit the sensor. This is why function cams from Nikon and Canon are normally known for having great high ISO performance and they do very well on that.

So, that’s kind of the basic differences between the crop and full frame sensors. You can think about these things the next time you want to purchase a camera. What are you going to need more? Is it a wider angle or telephoto, or more high ISO performance? Price will also be a factor to consider. These are things to consider.

You can visit Sleeklens.com for more informative posts and videos, or to have a look at the available photography products that will help make your work more superb and of high quality.

Rating: 4.00 based on 1 Rating
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Jordan Younce

Jordan Younce

I am a Real Estate and Landscape photography as well as a Graphic Designer based in North Carolina, USA. My passion for photography started with taking photos with a point-and-shoot and now I own a successful photography business. My goal is to help others learn the art of photography, develop their creative side and just have fun.

Comments (1)

  1. Ravi kanth Marri Guest

    Hi Jordan,

    Great article, Sorry where can i find the visual demo you are mentioning ?

    – Rav

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