How are reach and sensor size related and what are the merits of different options?

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  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,387Member
    PB_PM is incorrect. Cost is an issue whether you look at the original question I asked in the other thread which started this thread or if you just look at the title of this thread. One of "the merits of different options" is the cost of that option. Putting the same 24mp on the subject at the same distance (assuming you cannot get any closer) compare the D7100 + 300mm f4 (about $2,500 or less) with the D610 + 450mm f4 (about $10,400) which is 4 times more money. Assume your light is good and you can shoot at ISO 800 or below. Will you see any difference in a print up to 16 x 24 inches? That is the question. Please answer that question if you can. My guess it that you will not see a difference which makes Nikon's new 24mp DX sensors plus their old 300mm f4 lens a very good deal for birders. Now for one forth the cost you can essentially do what it took over $10,000 to do on the past. Right? or Wrong?
  • tc88tc88 Posts: 537Member
    I agree with donaldejose on this. The word "reach" implies economics. :) It means trying to pay at one level, and get the benefit at another level. If money is no concern, everyone wants a D800 and 800mm. :)
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    At last; the reason I cannot what people are on about when they talk about "reach"

    every one has a different definition
  • WestEndBoyWestEndBoy Posts: 1,456Member
    PB_PM is incorrect. Cost is an issue whether you look at the original question I asked in the other thread which started this thread or if you just look at the title of this thread. One of "the merits of different options" is the cost of that option. Putting the same 24mp on the subject at the same distance (assuming you cannot get any closer) compare the D7100 + 300mm f4 (about $2,500 or less) with the D610 + 450mm f4 (about $10,400) which is 4 times more money. Assume your light is good and you can shoot at ISO 800 or below. Will you see any difference in a print up to 16 x 24 inches? That is the question. Please answer that question if you can. My guess it that you will not see a difference which makes Nikon's new 24mp DX sensors plus their old 300mm f4 lens a very good deal for birders. Now for one forth the cost you can essentially do what it took over $10,000 to do on the past. Right? or Wrong?
    Yes, as the poser of the question, I agree that economics is an important factor. However, PB_PM point is otherwise an important consideration in my view.
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    If money is no concern, everyone wants a D800 and 800mm. :)
    That's not necessarily true.

    You'd get even more "reach" pairing that 800mm on a D7100, giving a 1200mm effective focal length.

  • tc88tc88 Posts: 537Member

    You'd get even more "reach" pairing that 800mm on a D7100, giving a 1200mm effective focal length.
    That's cheapening out. :) They should get a D800 and pay Nikon to make a 1200mm. :)

  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    You've probably seen "The Beast", Nikon 1200-1700mm f5.6 IF-ED:

    http://blogs.reuters.com/photographers-blog/2007/07/18/unleashing-the-beast/

    In the Reuters article above they've converted it to a Canon mount.

    They could have used a "full-frame" Canon 1-Ds, but in to get even more reach (what, 1700mm isn't enough?) they used the 1.3 crop APS-H 1-D mk II N.

    Pity Nikon hasn't updated the lens with AF-S VRIIIIIIIIIII. :)

  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,373Member
    edited January 2014
    PB_PM is incorrect.
    From your viewpoint. Heck, you get more reach for less from M4/3s,or a point and shoot. Gosh you're fool for using DX, and on and on we go. 8-| It is a pointless argument, with people who shoot DX saying "DX IS THE GREATEST" and people who use FX saying "sure it has a crop factor, but DX isn't the be all and end all of telephoto photography," only to be shot down by DX fanboys complaining that they don't have enough money for FX.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,387Member
    Yes PB_PM. I have seen some nice shots using the Nikon 1 and a converter to allow the use of regular F mount Nikkor lenses. But Nikon's CX sensors are 10 to 14mp, not 24, so they are not putting as many pixels on the bird and to use DxOMark as just one yardstick the acceptable high ISO number for the AW1 is 428, the S1 is 397, the J3 is 420 compared to the D5300 at 1338 and the D7100 at 1256. If we are going to use a 300mm lens and want to shoot at 1/500 of a second and f5.6 we better be able to have a very usable ISO 400 to ISO 800. The CX sensors will be beyond their acceptable IQ at those ISOs. Sure, CX will give us more "reach" but it won't give us good IQ at that reach when using the lens I am suggesting. So CX is out. A few years ago DX was also out. Consider the D300s which was rated only to a high ISO of 787 and only put 12mp on the bird or the D90 at ISO 977 with 12 megapixels. Only the current generation of DX sensors provide good enough high ISO ratings with 24mp on the bird to allow us to now use a relatively inexpensive 300mm f4 in place of a four times more expensive D610 and 500mm f4 combination. A D7000 was acceptable at an ISO of 1167 but it put only 16mp on the bird so it wasn't different than using a D800 and cropping to DX size. Sure the D610 combination will have some additional advantages. DxOMark rates the sensor as acceptable to and ISO of 2925, I would expect that difference to be evident when printing an image at poster size or larger. But when printing only at 16x24 or viewing on a monitor I am suggesting the latest Nikon DX sensors open new doors for us and should be capable of producing some stunning bird photos at one forth the cost of shooting them in FX. We will see if my assumptions prove correct or false.

    I don't say DX IS THE GREATEST. Never have made that claim. I shoot mainly with a D600 and a D800 these days. However, I do have an old Nikkor 300mm f4 and would much rather spend the money to mate it with a D7100 or D400 than spend $10,000 to mate my FX bodies to a 500mm f4. If I were a professional birder I would spend the 10 grand and enjoy even more megapixels on the subject and about one stop better high ISO quality. However, I am not and spending 10 grand is foolishness for me if I can accomplish 95% of the same thing for $1,200 or $1,900 (D400 price?). That is my point and I do think it remains a valid observation.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,373Member
    edited January 2014
    The thing is you are missing our point. The 300mm F4 works just as well on the FX body, you don't need to spend $10,000. Throw on a 1.4x TC and you have the same equivalent focal length, and effective aperture as on your DX body (basically).

    Anyway, I'm tired of going in circle about this. No point in beating a dead horse.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,387Member
    edited January 2014
    Now that is a very good point: using a 1.4x TC. I had not thought of it since I have never used any teleconverters. It would give 420mm but you also lose one stop making for a 420mm f5.6 lens. The loss of a stop shouldn't matter since I pick up one stop moving from DX to FX. Also, my old 300 f4 does not have an internal motor so I would lose AF ability. If I had a newer 300mm f4 with an internal AF motor it would be a good $200 option. Since I do not, a new generation DX body with AF motor for old lenses remains my most cost effective option. I am thinking the best thing is to have one good FX body and one good DX body with the same control layout.
    Post edited by donaldejose on
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,373Member
    If you use a Kenko TC, the motor drive will work.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • clskeltonclskelton Posts: 31Member
    To me, the term "reach" refers to pixel density, rather than using DX over FX. However, pixel density by itself means very little. High ISO IQ, price, fps, buffer, dynamic range, build quality, etc are also important. Some are more important than others depending on the situation and the photographer. The more someone understands the differences, the happier they will be with their purchase.

    Here's a fun NR post from two years ago. The comments section also debated over "reach" so I don't think the debate will ever end.
    http://nikonrumors.com/2012/01/17/some-nikon-v1-ft-1-tc-2-0x-400mm-f2-8-fun-2160mm.aspx/
  • IronheartIronheart Posts: 3,017Moderator
    The D800 will really really blow your socks off.

    If you find you want the 1.5 image extension, you can shoot in DX mode.

    If you are worried about your shaky hands, shoot with a faster shutter speed which the better high iso performance will let you do. There is even a way to automatically up shutter speed while taking focal length into consideration in auto ISP.

    There is nothing a D7100 can do that a D800 can't do just as we'll or better except damage your pocket book less if you drop it. Well, if 6fps is "really" important to you...... Regarding the "reach" argument, read the thread on that.
    Except put 24mp on subject in DX mode.
  • WestEndBoyWestEndBoy Posts: 1,456Member
    The D800 will really really blow your socks off.

    If you find you want the 1.5 image extension, you can shoot in DX mode.

    If you are worried about your shaky hands, shoot with a faster shutter speed which the better high iso performance will let you do. There is even a way to automatically up shutter speed while taking focal length into consideration in auto ISP.

    There is nothing a D7100 can do that a D800 can't do just as we'll or better except damage your pocket book less if you drop it. Well, if 6fps is "really" important to you...... Regarding the "reach" argument, read the thread on that.
    Except put 24mp on subject in DX mode.
    Acknowledged, which is why I referenced this thread.
  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,181Member
    You are comparing the pro level do to the adv level d7100. And saying it's better in every way.. This makes it so clear that adds is glaringly missing.
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    There are plenty of pro photographers who shoot DX for reach, including Nikon-sponsored pros who basically get free gear. And for these pro DX shooters, the D7100 is where it's at.

    (until the fabled D400 gets introduced later this year) :>
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,430Moderator
    At Christmas I had the chance to buy a D800 but chose the D7100. Nobody in this thread mentions the type of images they take? I have never had a problem with too much DoF (DX) like I have with too little (FX) and I think that the IQ of the D7100 makes the choice based on IQ pretty much non-existent. I shoot macro, landscape, cityscape and nightscape mainly so don't need the shallower DoF of FX but do enjoy the larger DoF DX.

    This FX fanboy stuff is tiresome. Horses for courses.
    Always learning.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,373Member
    edited January 2014

    This FX fanboy stuff is tiresome. Horses for courses.
    So is the DX/D7100 fanboy club. ;) What club am I speaking of?

    All I hear on this form is, "Nikon doesn't make this in DX", "Nikon is ignoring DX", "Another FX lens, $%#% Nikon", "Another stupid FX body, where is the D400? #%$%#% Nikon!!!!" Not in those words specifically, but you get the point.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,373Member
    edited January 2014
    Nobody in this thread mentions the type of images they take?
    Costal, others and myself mentioned the types of photos we take. Please read the entire thread.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,430Moderator
    Please read the entire thread.
    Hah! I tried, but I saw my life pointlessly passing before my eyes... :P
    Always learning.
  • snakebunksnakebunk Posts: 974Member
    edited January 2014
    @jshickele: Is your question answered? Or do you want more of the same? :)

    @PB_PM: The question is about reach and sensor size and not about the general benefits of FX.

    I always try to improve on the weakest part of my photography chain. When I had the D300s I was missing reach due to low pixel density. Now when I have a D800 (about 30% higher pixel density) I feel that this is no more the weakest part of my chain (now I think it's camera support). Point is that you have to experience the limits of your equipment.

    I think that within the foreseeable future the best DX cameras will always have the highest pixel density and the best FX cameras will always have the best high ISO performance (assuming you can fill the frame), and for that reason there should and will be supporters of both formats.
    Post edited by snakebunk on
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited January 2014
    Horses for courses.
    Yet again I find my self in agreement with S&P

    In the days of film, most commercial photographers would use all 3 formats

    large format technical camera , used for architectural stuff and some studio work

    Medium format used when working for glossy magazines

    Miniature (35mm) used for AV presentations

    Most press and wedding photographers would often use both medium AND miniature cameras

    Typically a Rollie AND a Leica

    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,181Member
    edited January 2014
    for me I am going with the nikon 1 and DX .. nikon1 is good enough for my "take anywhere" kit and it can only get better ! ..
    I have a DX and that will probably be my main camera (esp when the D400 arrives) .. and will be on the look out for a D600 mainly for high ISO. The reason DX will still be my main format is the "reach" but not exactly what has been discussed.. I love Macro and the 1.5 gets me that bit more magnification. High ISO is not a big issue with macro cos I use flash to augment the light 99% of my macro shots would be the lowest ISO for best IQ. FX gives me nothing and is in fact a disadvantage due to the lack of DOF. hoping the V3 will have CLS so I can get even more micro "reach" !
    Post edited by heartyfisher on
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • WestEndBoyWestEndBoy Posts: 1,456Member
    @jshickele: Is your question answered? Or do you want more of the same? :)
    .
    It is a good conversation. No reason to stop.
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