Sensor difference

Discussion in 'Open Gear Talk' started by photoheron, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. photoheron

    photoheron Rookie

    Jun 23, 2013
    Fort Smith Arkansas
    Still deciding whether to go with a compact system or micro 4/3. It boils down to what type of sensor that is in the camera. Is there really that big of difference between the sensors of compact vs a 4/3?
    Does it affect picture quality drastically? Which sensor has the overall edge?
  2. entropic remnants

    entropic remnants Hall of Famer

    Mar 3, 2013
    John Griggs
    What do you mean "compact"? If you mean the 1/2.3 and 1/1.7 sensors of compacts like the LX7, G15/16, LF1 and so forth they are not even close really to micro four thirds.

    Where will you see it? Primarily in any light that causes the ISO to rise. Modern micro four thirds are clean enough for most work to ISO 1600 and even beyond -- compacts MIGHT be good at ISO 800 but don't count on it.

    The question is not which sensor is "better" -- the question is WHAT are you going to DO with the camera? If you're going to do street photography in dimmer light then micro four thirds is the minimum ticket -- but APS-C sensors like the Fuji X100S (or X100 like I have) or other larger sensor modern camera like the Ricoh GR or Nikon Coolpix A are more appropriate.

    Nobody can answer your question for you really. It's easy enough for you to find image samples from DPReview reviews and compare them to see what looks okay to you and what doesn't.

    I shoot micro four thirds as my "system" cameras with some rather pricey lenses. For a carry-along I've settled on a Fuji X100 (the original not the 100S) and I am satisfied with what I get. I print and hang my photography and I've made nice looking 24x36 inch prints off my micro four thirds cameras, and now have made some (they just came tonight) 18x24 prints off of the Fuji.

    Do you need THAT much quality to do large prints? Shoot handheld in dim light? If not, you can probably use a compact sensor. But if you make large prints, crop down, or shoot in dim light at high shutter speeds you need something other than a tiny sensor to get good shots. My 2-cents anyway.
  3. Chrisnmn

    Chrisnmn Veteran

    Jul 8, 2012
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Chris Leskovsek
    theres an old legend saying "the bigger the sensor the better" that could be incendiary to say in forums like these...oops.

    I personally shoot with a GR and a OMD, the GR has "cleaner" or "better" image quality than my OMD, but it doesnt have the versatility the OMD has because is a system camera. Just pick whatever you want. Most cameras today in 2013 are way better than our expectations. they all deliver in the right hands.
  4. bartjeej

    bartjeej Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Nov 12, 2010
    haha there's no harm in saying something that's true, Chris! All else being equal, larger sensor size will give you less noise, more dynamic range, smoother colour gradations. But these are all things that you will only notice in certain situations - large prints, low light, or high contrast scenes for example, and ofcourse larger sensors tend to mean larger cameras an lenses. As John mentioned, it's your intended purpose - in other words, how hard you'll push certain aspects of the camera - that determines what's appropriate for you.
  5. entropic remnants

    entropic remnants Hall of Famer

    Mar 3, 2013
    John Griggs
    Pretty similar to what I do with my Panasonic GH2/GH1 (system) and X100 (larger sensor compact) setup. Great minds think alike... and so do we, lol.
  6. If you're interested in a small "take-everywhere" camera, then the Sony RX100 probably offers the biggest sensor in the smallest body right now...

    If camera size isn't as much of an issue than you're spoilt for choices.

    I'm happy with the size/quality compromise that m43 offers, but your needs might meet up at some other point :)
  7. Yeats

    Yeats All-Pro

    Jul 31, 2012
    New Jersey, USA