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Archive 2012 · What format sensor are you using and why.
  
 
aaronbor
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · What format sensor are you using and why.


I am just wondering, how many pro photographers are using full frame digital versus cropped sensor.
Can you pros out there, chime in as to what format you mostly are shooting, and why.

Thanks



Mar 28, 2012 at 06:54 PM
rhyder
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · What format sensor are you using and why.


I use DX, FX and MF.
Why?...to take pictures, of course.......



Mar 28, 2012 at 08:58 PM
aaronbor
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · What format sensor are you using and why.


That is a good reason why. What do you like about each format?
In other words, if you had to do an assigment, why would you pick a specific format?



Mar 28, 2012 at 09:07 PM
aaronbor
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · What format sensor are you using and why.


BTW I am not trying to do a DX versus FX post. I just wanted to learn why photographers may prefer one over the other.
Also considering that the cost to play Full Frame isnmuch higher, photographers who pay their bills thru their work would have justify having that investment. So I was wondering if many of you out there in the photo industry can make that finacial justification.

Aaron



Mar 28, 2012 at 09:11 PM
RDKirk
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · What format sensor are you using and why.


My rationale for format choice has not changed in 40 years. My technical goal has always been the greatest practical enlargeability, so I shoot the largest format operationally practical for my cashflow and methods. That included medium format and 4x5 film from 1970 until three years ago.


Mar 31, 2012 at 05:22 PM
GoGo
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Hi Aaron,

I am going to try to answer your question.

Pre Digital I used my 35mm system when I could but especially if I needed very wide, or very long lenses. Also the 35mm system was much more portable. I used my Medium format gear when I new the work would be printed in a magazine and especially when I know I would be required to light the subject. I used a view camera 4x5 when I knew that the client required the very best quality and or when a large reproduction was necessary.


These days I use full frame 35mm DSLR and Medium Format Digital in just about the same way. If minimal or little lighting is required I try to use the small format DSLR if I am lighting the subject and better quality files are required I used MFD.

Now keep in mind that I shoot people, both for editorial use and advertising use. When an advertising shoot comes in we shoot the MFD almost 90% of the time because more time and effort is going to go into the final file and it has to be flexible.

So I guess the more things have changed the more they have stayed the same. When the chips are down we use as much camera as we can.

Ciao,
Giorgio



Apr 01, 2012 at 04:19 PM
elfanucchi
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · What format sensor are you using and why.


I use mostly FFDSLR but also MFDSLR and formerly APS - C.
I have 5D II , 5D C, and now retired 20D.
I also have Phase One MFDSLR 60 MP for pro work.
I stopped using 4x5 and 8x10 film in mid 70's. Arca Swiss and many others.

The reasons for are much the same as was for film - 40 years ago.
Print Size !!!
FFDSLR for prints up to 16 x 20
MFDSL for prints above 16 x 20 and pro advertise work
APS - C was for prints up to 11 x 14 and not sure I will use APS C anymore.




Apr 01, 2012 at 04:38 PM
aaronbor
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Ok. That makes sense. The final product determines the tool used to create it.
If you need a large or high quality reproduction you will use the largest format possible.

So if I want to be a professional photographer, I would be expected to provide the highest possible quality product. This would be larger format equipment.
So the question is, can a photographer be offering professional photography services if he has not invested in the full format or medium format equipment?

And, why would a high mega pixel Dx/APS camera not deliver a product that would be suitable ( or competitive with other formats) for a 16x20 or even larger? (assuming one is using the high quality Lenses)

Thanks for all the responses. Your information has been very helpful.
Aaron







Apr 02, 2012 at 11:33 PM
RDKirk
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · What format sensor are you using and why.


aaronbor wrote:
Ok. That makes sense. The final product determines the tool used to create it.
If you need a large or high quality reproduction you will use the largest format possible.

So if I want to be a professional photographer, I would be expected to provide the highest possible quality product. This would be larger format equipment.
So the question is, can a photographer be offering professional photography services if he has not invested in the full format or medium format equipment?

And, why would a high mega pixel Dx/APS camera not deliver a product that would be suitable ( or competitive with other
...Show more

Other operational requirements can trump format size. Few professional field sports photographers seriously took a Hasselblad to the game. Although I sometimes used a 4x5 for portraits, I certainly used medium format much more often.

The reasons for established professionals to choose APS-C over 24x36mm are growing fewer with every other model year--the difference in price is, professionally speaking, nearly negligible. But then again, it's fairly rare that the format advantages of 24x36mm are make-or-break issues for many professionals.

If the price of medium format was only, say, three or four hundred percent that of 24x36mm instead of a thousand percent more, there would be many more medium format owners. But right now, a photographer owning a medium format camera is about like a truck driver owning his rig.



Apr 03, 2012 at 12:01 AM
 

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aaronbor
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · What format sensor are you using and why.


RDKirk, you make an excellent point.
The rumors about the replacement for The Nikon D300s (D400-D500?), suggest that Nikon may do away with the DX cropped sensor for their pro-level Dx model. Specially since the D800 left big gap between the D700.

Maybe there is little future for cropped sensor among pro- level cameras and glass!




Apr 03, 2012 at 06:45 AM
PShizzy
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Aaron,

You have to remember that only a few years ago, 35mm sensors were expensive, in the 8k range, and a lot of people produced excellent work with 1.3x-1.6x sensors that could barely muster high IS0 to 1600.

I'd say if you were serious about upgrading kit, I'd consider lenses before cameras. A great lens will last you through several cameras. I had a 24-70 that's seen me go from a 10D through to a 1D III. And I've had a 200-400 that's seen me from a D40 to a D3x. Cameras come and go, technology on them changes so fast, but lenses last several generations.

Another thing: talent and skill show regardless of equipment. A great example of this is Dave Black, an excellent photographer who does everything from sports to lightpainting. He shot the 2004 Masters with both top of the line gear (a D2H, 4mp, 8fps, and horrible high ISO), and with a COOLPIX 8700.

THE MASTERS

with a COOLPIX

And ya know what... he kicked ass. Ya know why? Talent and skill. He used it for a very specific reason. I'm sure anyone who didn't know him must have thought he was some old whacko trying to shoot Tiger's backswing with a point and shoot.

Feel free to read it:
http://www.daveblackphotography.com/workshop-at-the-ranch/103-workshop-at-the-ranch-may-2004-documenting-the-masters

Anyhow, just think about what you can do to keep improving your skills, and if you're good at what you do, people won't care what you use, they'll just enjoy the results.

Just my thoughts



Apr 03, 2012 at 10:19 AM
GoGo
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Hi Aaron,

I must have misunderstood, I thought you wanted answers to your question about formats and hardware?

If you are asking about what it takes to be a pro then I can tell you that one Pro I respect usually brings a Holga to his shoots. Everyone is different, everyone comes from somewhere, and everyone brings something unique to the table. You should decide what you bring. The bleeding edge of technology, does get pricey but the results are jaw dropping.

As to the question of cameras, format etc? Time marches on technology changes, and so do most Pros.

One aspect of the business that has not changed is that it takes a team, stylists, hair/makeup, assistants, models, location scouts, business people, reps, accountants, lawyers, hell you might even need insurance. Adds up to more than the cost of a camera.

One definition of Professional Photographer is someone who can fulfill the clients request on demand, as required. I guess that counts too.

Good luck.



Apr 03, 2012 at 09:51 PM
Myko
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Hi Aaron,

For many of the same reasons I use FFDSLR (canon) for some assignments, and a MFDB (Phase One) for others. Until a few years ago I worked primarily in 4x5 film. As a 30-year working pro, the format chosen was always a question of what would get the best result given the assignment. That changed a few years back as digital broke about the 11MP barrier. The new paradigm became cost savings (for the client) and maximum resolution without scanning.

The question of format used to be a very real one. The format chosen affects many aspects of imaging and workflow. I don't know many product or architectural photographers that would say they prefer working with small format cameras or are satisfied working with a MFDB on the back of a 4X5. Depth of field and perspective correction are just 2 of large-format's advantages that are minimally available with medium-format options.

I have gone back to using my 4X5 camera in the manner that the Photography Gods intended it to be used, albeit digitally. I use a Multistitch adaptor plate ([url=http://www.multistitch.com]www.multistitch.com)[/url] on my Cambo for most of my product and architectural assignments. My Phase back is an 8-year-old 16MP 36X36mm chip and I wind up with a 66x66mm live area and a 54MP capture. For architectural shoots I use the rear shift on the Cambo to produce a 60X126mm live area and a 109MP capture. By the way, that's 2.6 X 5 inches., and I can compose and focus on my ground glass like I used to.

Of course I'm still stuck with the small cameras for shooting moving subjects and people, but I always was. I also use the DSLR for low-budget location work like simple real estate shoots where there is no budget for an assistant to haul / keep an eye on the gear.

I hope this helps!



Apr 15, 2012 at 01:27 PM
aaronbor
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Thank you very much for all the responses. I really appreciate your willingness to share your knowledge and experience.

Aaron



Apr 15, 2012 at 01:53 PM
DavidSchneider
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Kodak CCD sensor in my Hasselblad. Provides detail you can't get with dslr CMOs sensor. CMOS full frame in Canon 5dMK2 for higher ISO use, action or sports, work which will only only sell in smaller sizes, like 11x14 and down.


Apr 16, 2012 at 02:12 AM
elfanucchi
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · What format sensor are you using and why.


The thing you need to realize in the pro and commerical market is
that clients keep coming back and request larger larger reprints over time.
Example - Womens fashion store wants framed 11 x 14 prints on original order,
then on second order wants more reprints for store posters 30 x 40,
then on third order wants billboard size advertising 15 x 40 feet.

Not many clients would have confidence in photographer if they said
"sorry cant make it bigger because I shot it on small format".



Apr 16, 2012 at 01:10 PM
Javier Munoz
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · What format sensor are you using and why.


Hi Aaron,

If you want to be a pro I would recommend you:
1) learn to consistently take quality pictures. (Use of lighting/modifiers..).
2) learn photoshop, like really learn it
3) learn about networking, pricing

4) then worry about camera format

If you are good at 1, 2 and 3 you wouldnt be asking 4



Apr 17, 2012 at 01:03 AM
markd61
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · What format sensor are you using and why.


I use FF because I need to use the Canon 17TS-E to it's full advantage.
I have used MF and 4x5, 5x7 and 8x10 in the past.
I use what I need to get the job done. APS is fine as long as the final product makes the client happy.
I am actually looking at m4/3 as the cameras are offering some compelling reasons to use them.

Ultimate enlargability of the images used to be my goal. As the vast majority of my work goes to web and only occasionally to print this is much less of a concern to me. My first digital camera was a Canon 10D which impressed em no end with it's quality. I stopped worrying when we took cropped images to billboard size and they looked stunning.

Most applications today will not show the shortcomings of the camera or file size but they will show shortcomings of skill.



Apr 17, 2012 at 02:52 AM





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