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11-04-2013, 02:22 PM   #1
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FF or just less of a crop factor?

I was wondering if a sensor HAS to be FF to make Pentaxians happy, or if it could simply be a 1.1 or 1.2 factor.

For me, I'd be fine with a 1.1 or 1.2 factor. My FA 31 would be a 33 or 36mm, my 50mm a 55 or 60mm, and my 18mm a 20 or 22mm, all of which are fine. And that has the added advantage of only losing the softest part of the image circle.

So if Pentax were to float that idea, would it have any traction?

11-04-2013, 02:25 PM - 1 Like   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by K David Quote
I was wondering if a sensor HAS to be FF to make Pentaxians happy, or if it could simply be a 1.1 or 1.2 factor.

For me, I'd be fine with a 1.1 or 1.2 factor. My FA 31 would be a 33 or 36mm, my 50mm a 55 or 60mm, and my 18mm a 20 or 22mm, all of which are fine. And that has the added advantage of only losing the softest part of the image circle.

So if Pentax were to float that idea, would it have any traction?
Go big or go home, IMO.

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11-04-2013, 02:38 PM   #3
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The issue is what is already available. Finding a sensor between APS-C and full frame for a reasonable price might be tough and Pentax can't make their own because they don't own a fab.
11-04-2013, 02:42 PM   #4
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The industry is reaching the point where the law of supply and demand means that a 24x36mm sensor will be cheaper than a specialty sensor that is slightly smaller like APS-H for instance. That being said, it wouldn't be a bad idea to include an APS-H crop mode on a full frame camera for more buffer depth and sharper corners when the entire frame isn't needed. It might even make some of the DA lenses useable on such a camera.


Last edited by maxfield_photo; 11-04-2013 at 07:41 PM.
11-04-2013, 05:45 PM   #5
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Yep, the sensor isnt made only for this one camera, Pentax usually gets the sensor from Sony. Pentax then uses the same sensor in more than one camera, and Sony sells that sensor to more than one brand. This way they can keep the costs low. The problem with a 1.1 crop (which isnt a bad idea by itself) is that it would probably end up costing as much as, or even more than, the FF sensor. Simply because making more of something makes it eventually cost less.
But I wouldnt mind if Pentax used a slightly bigger sensor, something like APS-H or 1.2 crop factor. Or even a square sensor, that would be neat. I just dont think it makes economic sense, at least at the moment.
11-05-2013, 03:49 PM   #6
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Heck, I'd be willing to pay for the '36x36' camera where cropping is done in post.

Unfortunately a hinged-arm mirror wouldn't clear the lens.
11-05-2013, 10:06 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The issue is what is already available. Finding a sensor between APS-C and full frame for a reasonable price might be tough and Pentax can't make their own because they don't own a fab.
Ricoh does have a semiconductor branch, so they do have a toe in the water….

…but they don't list image sensors on the product pages….

…yet…

11-06-2013, 02:05 AM   #8
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I do not see reason enough to make pentax ff 1.1/1.2x permanently. If SR is the reason can still take FF pics when SR is off. When SR on pics can be 1.1/1.2x only if needed cos of technical limitations, good idea to limit also viewfinder for accurate pic framing. My mz-5 had viewfinder like this for 'panorama' pics, it was ok.

11-06-2013, 02:23 AM   #9
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Well the argument of the availability of off-beat sensors doesn't really apply anymore, since little Fuji is going to be manufacturing their very own FF sensor, instead of sourcing elsewhere and reselling it. But I agree, all camera makers seem to be going FF format, so a 1.2 or 1.1 crop would still mean staying behind.
11-06-2013, 03:06 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ElJamoquio Quote
Heck, I'd be willing to pay for the '36x36' camera where cropping is done in post.

Unfortunately a hinged-arm mirror wouldn't clear the lens.
Also, a lens designed to cover 24*36 won't cover 36*36. The biggest square that fits in that circle would be around 30.5*30.5mm, if I recall correctly.
11-06-2013, 03:19 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by topace Quote
Also, a lens designed to cover 24*36 won't cover 36*36. The biggest square that fits in that circle would be around 30.5*30.5mm, if I recall correctly.
Pretty close: 30.6 x 30.6 is the figure. It's a pity that extra 6.6mm would probably prevent lengthening the mirror, because of the proximity of the rear lens element, not to mention the depth of the mirror box.
11-06-2013, 05:48 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by topace Quote
Also, a lens designed to cover 24*36 won't cover 36*36. The biggest square that fits in that circle would be around 30.5*30.5mm, if I recall correctly.
...which is why I said I'd do the cropping in post.
11-06-2013, 08:23 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ElJamoquio Quote
...which is why I said I'd do the cropping in post.
Oh, I misunderstood, I thought you meant that you'd crop down to the aspect ratio you wanted, not that you'd place precious sensor surface outside the picture area. But if sensors get cheaper, why not really.
11-06-2013, 08:29 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The issue is what is already available. Finding a sensor between APS-C and full frame for a reasonable price might be tough and Pentax can't make their own because they don't own a fab.
This is spot on IMO and probably why we haven't seen a FF Pentax yet. However, I reckon Sony FF chips will probably come available soon, looking at the A7r here.
11-08-2013, 04:28 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by K David Quote
For me, I'd be fine with a 1.1 or 1.2 factor. My FA 31 would be a 33 or 36mm, my 50mm a 55 or 60mm, and my 18mm a 20 or 22mm, all of which are fine.
Other than manufacturing issue, the odd 1.1 or 1.2 factor would only suit old lens user (like me), because what we care is to get as far away from 1.5 as possible, to use our lenses in the nearest native focal length (for example 30mm is okay-ish to subsitute 28mm). However, this means modern FA which are much more sharper at the edge are not being used to the fullness, and wouldn't help the sell of modern lenses.
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