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Zack Arias: Sensor Size – Crop Or Crap?


Does full frame really matter so much and if so why did pro photographer Zack Arias decided to switch from his professional DSLR to a small mirrorless camera? plus, how big is a really big “sensor” – all these questions and more on this video.

Photographer Zack Arias is the type of in your face guy that doesn’t care how blunt he sounds as long as he gets his message across. The video above is a very good example of this mindset with a very direct approach.

We are asked at least once a week – “should I buy a crop camera or move to FF”? this video tries to give a very different perspective. One which looks back at much larger “sensors” (or more appropriately  – film) with sizes that dwarf any existing commercial digital sensor today.

Sensor size table – keep in mind film can be much larger than any sensor

Sensors size-01-01

Arias published the video alongside an article entitled “Crop or Crap :: Math or Moment” on his blog from which we took one paragraph which relates to quite a few discussions we see online again and again about the more technical aspects of photography:

“But Zack! I have math that says…..”

I’m so glad you brought math! Love it! Yummy math! That’s why I’m a photographer. Because I love math so much. That’s why I study the likes of Avedon and Mary Ellen Mark and Dan Winters; it’s because of all their gorgeous math. Every time I see a beautiful photograph I grab a calculator because math turns me on that much. Have you ever studied the math of Paolo Roversi (NSFW)? OMG. His math… his math is unreal. Love his math. I hope to do math like him one day. Mmmmm. Math.

Arias does acknowledge that math is important in the next paragraph but his sarcastic comment does touch a nerve for quite a few photographers that we know – what do you think?

We have already looked at different aspects of sensor size in the past on  Matt Granger‘s video “Why Depth of Field is NOT Effected by Sensor Size – A Demonstration” and in “Understanding Crop Factor in Digital Cameras” by photographer Tony Northrup.

More photography related technology videos can be found on our photo-tech section here on LensVid.

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