Aspect ratios

Discussion in 'Digital Cameras' started by Gav, May 5, 2005.

  1. Gav

    Gav Guest

    I currently have a Canon S50 which takes photos in 4:3 ratio like many
    compacts. I convert all the photos I take to 3:2 for printing purposes (at
    Jessops, ASDA etc..) and so I have 2 copies of each photo I take, 1 in 4:3
    and 1 in 3:2. This obviously takes up quite a bit of space and I'm now
    backing up around 10Gb of data. My question is, is there any point me
    keeping the 4:3 copies? Only reason I can think of is for viewing them on
    the TV? I'm planning to get a Canon 350D within the next few weeks so I will
    not have any 4:3 photos after that anyway. I'm very close to deleting all my
    4:3's but don't want to wish that I hadn't deleted them further down the
    line. Can anybody think of any other reasons I should keep them?

    Gav, May 5, 2005
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  2. Gav

    Gav Guest

    Do you think this will eventually be the case? I thought the same, but why
    are the top end cameras still taking in 3:2?
    I plan to when I'm finished sorting them, but due to the fact I am making so
    changes I'm currently backing up to DAT with a 5 week rotation.
    Gav, May 5, 2005
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  3. Gav

    Leonard Guest

    Because they're based on 3:2 film cameras. Actually I don't suppose
    there's any technical reason for the less-than-35mm-size cameras to
    not be 4:3. It's just tradition and the associated availability of
    print sizes.

    However I wonder whether 4:3 might not just be a phase anyway. Why not
    sqrt(2):1, or 16:9, or (1+sqrt(5)):2 ? I also notice quite a few 5:4
    paper sizes being offered; maybe that could be a new standard.

    Gav, offer 6"x4.5" and 8"x6" prints (ie 4:3 without
    cropping). I haven't used them much but they seem ok so far.

    - Len

    ('A' series paper, HDTV, Golden ratio)
    Leonard, May 5, 2005
  4. Gav

    Mark B. Guest

    You've got this backwards. Widescreen TVs will be taking over the market
    and 4:3 will become the exception.

    Mark B., May 5, 2005
  5. Gav

    Justin Thyme Guest

    Personally, I would only bother keeping the 4:3 original versions. Any time
    you want to print them in a 3:2 format, you can crop at the time, but if you
    only have an already cropped version, you will have to crop even more if you
    want to print at a different ratio print size. The most common mid-sized
    enlargements are 5x7 and 8x10 inches - both of these sizes don't have a lot
    of cropping when printed from a 4:3 original. There is a lot of cropping
    when printing these sizes from a 3:2 original.
    Justin Thyme, May 5, 2005
  6. Gav

    Justin Thyme Guest

    History doesn't support that view. For some 40 years, 35mm has been the most
    common film format shot, with it's 3:2 aspect ratio, yet the most common
    enlargement size is still 8x10 with a 4:5 ratio, which requires a lot of
    cropping from a 35mm original. 8x12, which perfectly matches 35mm, is a
    very rare size. 6x4 and 5x3.5" still remain the most common standard print
    sizes, even though 6x4.5" or 5.33x4" would match digital better. Many
    mini-lab printers could be configured to print in these sizes, but not many
    labs will do it for you. 8x6 & 16x12 are the only readily available 4:3
    print sizes - neither are very popular.
    Olympus are the only manufacture to offer 4:3 in an SLR camera, and their
    cameras are not nearly as popular as the 3:2 Nikon, Canon, Pentax & Minolta
    offerings. Personally I'd like to see 5:4 in a camera, to match 8x10 &
    Justin Thyme, May 5, 2005
  7. Gav

    Old Bugger Guest

    Always keep the originals.
    Old Bugger, May 5, 2005
  8. Which makes me wonder why we don't see 8x11 or 8x5.5 frames.
    Matt Silberstein

    All in all, if I could be any animal, I would want to be
    a duck or a goose. They can fly, walk, and swim. Plus,
    there there is a certain satisfaction knowing that at the
    end of your life you will taste good with an orange sauce
    or, in the case of a goose, a chestnut stuffing.
    Matt Silberstein, May 5, 2005
  9. The problem for me is that I compose in the camera and then have to
    mess up that composition to fit standard prints. Or have a problem

    Matt Silberstein

    All in all, if I could be any animal, I would want to be
    a duck or a goose. They can fly, walk, and swim. Plus,
    there there is a certain satisfaction knowing that at the
    end of your life you will taste good with an orange sauce
    or, in the case of a goose, a chestnut stuffing.
    Matt Silberstein, May 5, 2005
  10. I have several framed 8x12s. The frames came from a local camera store,
    sitting beside the 8x10 frames. You *can* get them, but they're less
    common than the traditional sizes.

    Dave Martindale, May 5, 2005
  11. Gav

    Ron Hunter Guest

    I never recommend throwing away more data than necessary, so I would
    KEEP the 4:3 and ditch the 3:2 copies. This will greatly reduce your
    space requirements, and will still leave you with all the original data.
    You never know when it will come in handy.
    Ron Hunter, May 5, 2005
  12. Gav

    Ron Hunter Guest

    If you are looking for logic in popular print sizes, you will be
    disappointed. There is none.
    Ron Hunter, May 5, 2005
  13. Gav

    Mark B. Guest

    All I'm saying is that in a few years the majority of TVs on the market will
    be wider than 4:3. The 'digital wave' is going to overtake this old
    standard as well as film.

    Mark B., May 6, 2005
  14. Gav

    Don Stauffer Guest

    Cameras used to adjust the viewfinder view to show a bit less than the
    actual image would be, to facilitate a bit of cropping. Don't know of
    digicams do this or not- I guess I should calibrate my viewfinder and
    find that out.

    As far as framing, usually the matts are not cut to a 3:2, so 35mm
    photographers always had to crop, unless they were doing a 4 x 6 print
    unmatted. So digicam users are no worse off than 35mm users. If one
    wanted to print a 35mm frame with full 3:2, it was- out with the X-acto
    knife and cut the matt.

    BTW, if framing, one does not need to trim the print- the matt takes
    care of that.
    Don Stauffer, May 6, 2005
  15. Gav

    Colin D Guest

    Almost all viewfinders underscan, i.e. the vf - direct or slr - shows
    less than the imaging medium will capture. Exceptions are top-end slr's
    like the EOS 1 series, and the digital equivalent.

    I've not thought about this before, as photogs we seem to accept the
    common aspect ratios, and allow them to dictate our composition within
    the preset frame shape, whereas painters seem to be under no constraint
    as to aspect ratio, except perhaps where they buy ready-made canvases.

    Also, while I like the 3:2 as a landscape orientation, I find it a bit
    narrow when used in portrait orientation. With the current crop of
    printers (at least other than in the States) offering an A-series format
    - A4, A3, I am finding that shape works well for almost all my shots,
    being 1:1.414, intermediate between 4:3 (1:1.33) and 3:2 (1:1.5). The
    advantage of the A-series is that it is based on 1:sqrt(2), so cutting
    an A3 in half gives an A4, in half again gives A5, and so on, and they
    are all the same aspect ratio.

    Fitting a 4:3 ratio onto A4 paper loses a small amount of height off a
    landscape image - about 12.7mm, or about 6% of the height; and fitting a
    3:2 ratio onto A4 loses a small amount of width - about 18mm, or about
    6% also.

    So, my wifes p&s and my 300D print equally well on A-series papers. Now,
    if we can get the snapshot size changed from 6x4 (100 x 150mm) to A6
    (105 x 148mm) then we could all be happy ...

    Colin D, May 7, 2005
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