Friday, June 12, 2009

Buy a Crop Sensor Camera for More Zoom?

If carrying a 5D mark II and a 40D backup camera, or choosing between buying the two, there is no advantage whatsoever to putting your telephoto lens on the 40D to get "more" zoom. The two cameras have virtually the same actual pixel size, so you can get the same resolution image simply cropping an image from your 5D mark II.

In practice, the 5D mark II produces such a higher quality image, especially at the higher ISOs needed to accommodate longer zoom lenses, that the full frame camera with "less" zoom reach is the best choice 100% of the time. I've compared the two under actual shooting conditions and upon comparing the results I have very much regretted moving my 70-200 L f/4 IS lens and 2X teleconverter over to the 40D for part of the shoot.

Oddly, you can see photography magazines and some "experts" recommending the choice of crop sensor cameras for people who might want to experience "longer effective zoom" due to the smaller sensor. I can only conclude that they have never shot both under real world shooting conditions.