Nikon will not go to full frame...

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by John A. Stovall, Feb 1, 2006.

  1. Which is not especially useful to me. The problem is, at f2.8 I'm
    often shooting at shutter speeds where *subject* motion is the
    limiting factor and at max ISO. A faster lens (or more light, but
    using a flash at a music party at 3am is generally not a popular
    choice, and anyway doesn't give photos that give an accurate
    impression of the event) is the only way to improve things.

    Of course not using a zoom helps; hence my 58mm f/1.2 NOCT and 135mm
    f/2, for example.
    Recent releases seem to suggest you're right (the part I'm unsure
    about of my own knowledge is the relative cost of VR vs faster glass,
    but your assertion seems quite possible). Sigh.
    Nikon was relatively quick with the 12-24mm zoom, but whether you
    consider that a "higher end" lens is a question. It's sure more
    *expensive* than my Tokina 12-24mm :).
    David Dyer-Bennet, Feb 3, 2006
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  2. An awful lot of photographers already have a 28-70mm f2.8; But for a
    walkaround lens I really want 24mm-100mm f2.8 or faster (35mm
    equivalent). On a 1.5x, that's 18mm to 70mm, roughly.

    Hmmm; I wonder how I'd feel about the gap between 55 and 70 just being
    ignored, left empty? No, probably not; 90mm is about my favorite
    length and I *really* want my walkaround lens to cover that.
    David Dyer-Bennet, Feb 3, 2006
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  3. John A. Stovall

    SMS Guest

    I'd like it because recently I've wanted to take indoor shots in two
    places that prohibit both flash photography and tripods, the Rosicrucian
    Egyptian Museum in San Jose, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey.
    Even if flash photography were permitted at the Aquarium it wouldn't
    have really helped.

    An 18-70mm lens is not wide angle on a camera with a 1.5 crop factor.
    For true WA, you're right, and we won't see a 12-24 VR or 10-22 IS.

    Personally, I have less of a need for a telephoto IS, because the times
    I use the telephoto is in outdoor shots where a tripod and a camera with
    mirror lock-up would be an acceptable alternative, though I can
    understand why some sports photographers would need them.
    SMS, Feb 3, 2006
  4. He probably means the 17-55mm f/2.8 ("Nikon Zoom Super Wide Angle AF
    17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor Autofocus Lens for Digital
    Cameras" as cut and pasted from B&H).
    Yes, for me. On a 1.5x sensor, that range includes the 85-90mm
    equivalent sweet spot that's been my absolute favorite (Summicron 90mm
    f/2, Zuiko 85mm f/2) so far in my career. The Nikor 105mm f/2.5 is
    definitely too long. (Hope this isn't confusing; most of my past
    experience is 35mm film, so I think in those terms, I've only had a
    DSLR since Dec 2002.)
    David Dyer-Bennet, Feb 3, 2006
  5. John A. Stovall

    Jeremy Nixon Guest

    An exception is the 17-35mm f/2.8, which is better than most of the fixed-
    length lenses in its range, at least at the wider end.
    Jeremy Nixon, Feb 3, 2006
  6. John A. Stovall

    Jeremy Nixon Guest

    I replaced my 18-70 "kit lens" (which I sold with my D70) with a 17-35.
    When deciding between that and the 17-55, I weighed the smaller range
    of the 17-35 against the fact that the 17-35 is a better lens. I went
    through the shots I'd taken with the kit lens and discovered that 17-35
    covered 80% of my kit lens shots, and at least 95% of the "keepers", so
    the choice became clear. I was switching to a 50mm when I needed that
    reach anyway. At the wide end, a couple of millimeters makes a much
    bigger difference.
    I don't see 55-70mm as that important because it's a small range, and I've
    not been in any position where the jump from 50-70 mattered to me (though
    I do have the 60mm macro, I rarely use it for non-closeup stuff).

    Similarly, I have nothing covering the "gap" from 35mm to 50mm. That's
    a bit of a wider range, and it would be nice to have something in there,
    it just hasn't mattered to me.

    I think it's important to see the difference between "these focal lengths
    are important to my photography" (which seems to be your situation) and
    "I must cover every possible millimeter of focal length", which you see
    all the time and which really makes no sense to me.

    Anyway, the 17-55 isn't a 17-70 because they wanted a high-quality lens,
    and (presumably) felt they could do better with the shorter range. That's
    not a price-driven design. In your situation, the 17-35 and the 28-70
    (or the 24-85, which is also a good lens) is a good solution.
    Jeremy Nixon, Feb 3, 2006
  7. I used to be the case that the 28-45 was considered a wide angle zoom
    (on 35mm film).

    But these days, it has to be at least 100 degress, otherwise it is not
    considered wide angle.

    Strange, how technical terms become marketing/propaganda.
    Philip Homburg, Feb 3, 2006
  8. Um, that's an extreme position. On film 35mm cameras, 35mm is fringe
    wideangle (and used by some as their standard). 28mm is definitely
    wideangle. 24mm is wider than most amateurs had in their kit. And
    18mm on a 1.5 crop camera is, of course, 24mm. Saying it's "not wide
    angle" seems to me absurd.

    In context of what you're saying, that the VR/IS is clearly relevant
    at and near the 70mm end, yes, certainly. And maybe that's all you
    were saying.

    Saying it's not wide enough to interest you is a perfectly reasonable
    statement. (I owned a 20mm and a 17mm before I got a DSLR, I'm not
    immune to the attraction of extreme wideangle. I might have
    considered a 14mm next if not for the cost.)
    David Dyer-Bennet, Feb 3, 2006
  9. John A. Stovall

    Skip M Guest

    You're the one who said, "That began to change with the EOS-1, which was the
    first EOS camera that could be taken seriously for pro use." With the
    advent of the EOS1, I think the biggest issue was lens availablity. Some of
    the early lenses for the EF mount were lacking, sadly, in speed, focus
    speed, despite internal motors, and build quality. The 1n was taken pretty
    seriously, IIRC, focus was much better than it's predecessor, and built like
    a tank. It was really the first AF camera to be taken seriously by pros,
    the Nikons were still better MF than AF cameras, if reports were to be
    I was just speaking for the sake of clarity.
    I know, I was acknowledging that...
    Skip M, Feb 3, 2006
  10. John A. Stovall

    Skip M Guest

    Well, less broadly speaking, the 16/17-35mm lenses are superwide zooms, not
    wide zooms. I think anything above 24mm is merely "wide." Above 40mm was
    considered "normal," above 60mm, "tele."
    Skip M, Feb 3, 2006
  11. John A. Stovall

    Tony Polson Guest

    Of course it isn't! It's 27mm.

    Tony Polson, Feb 4, 2006

  12. Sigh. That seems to be the case. *16* goes to 24, *18* goes to 27.
    Those few millimeters at the wide end make a big difference.
    David Dyer-Bennet, Feb 4, 2006
  13. John A. Stovall

    SMS Guest

    Well I guess there's no official definition of wide-angle and super-wide

    By B&H standards:
    <=20 is Super Wide
    21-28 is Wide
    55-300 is Telephoto
    So I guess in-between Wide and Telephoto is standard.

    When I used my 28-105 on my film camera, I didn't find the 28 wide
    enough for extended family portraits, but it could be that my wife
    simply has too many siblings, nephews and nieces. The 20-35 USM solved
    that problem on my EOS-5 until I got the 20D, then it became 32-56mm
    which was insufficient. The 10-22mm EF-s is fine (16-35mm). If I ever go
    full frame, I'll have the old 20-35 USM to use, but of course by then
    maybe I'll be willing to splurge for some L glass. I think I should get
    an EOS-5D to go with my EOS-5 QD!.

    I think that the 17-85mm IS, (27-136mm) is the "walking around lens" for
    non-pros. An L version would be nice, but it may be too much lens for
    the body. For a full-frame body, the 24-70mm f/2.8L USM would make a
    good "walking around" lens.

    I'm not really upset at the whole EF-s line of lenses, because the
    alternative would have been even more expensive, to get the same quality
    of optics. Look at the poor reviews of the Sigma 12-24mm which could be
    used on full-frame or APS-C size sensor cameras, i.e.

    And yes, those few mm at the wide end do make a big difference.
    SMS, Feb 4, 2006
  14. John A. Stovall

    Paul Furman Guest

    18-70 f/2.8 DX would be nice!!
    The only thing I have on my D70 (eyeing a D200) between 24 & 70 is a
    45/2.8 (and the 28-200 which I should sell because I don't use it any
    more). I'm more inclined to get the 17-35 & ignore 50-65 range.
    Paul Furman, Feb 4, 2006
  15. John A. Stovall

    zeitgeist Guest

    Many products are priced the way they are simply because it is perceived it
    ought to cost more. I don't know that a full frame sensor costs 3 or 4
    times as much to make as a DX, but typical marketing to the pro/consumer
    market will place it that high.

    Whether or not a FF camera is better or not, it will have the preception of
    being so. And since it will be better then there will be a market for it.
    Even if that particular niche market is not that particularly profitable, it
    makes the rest of the product line more competitive. Why do car makers
    produce exotic sports cars? What is the market for a rolls royce or
    maybach? Are they 100 times better than a Kia?

    Anyway, I'm just surprised Nikon didn't buy Kodak's pro digital division and
    update it.

    As another pointed out, as image capture improved the size of the capture
    shrunk, the first cameras were 11x14, some larger. 8x10 was a field
    camera. From glass to tin to film 5x7 and 8x10 were the studio formats and
    6x9 abouts were the amature size. Pro journalists used a 'speed' graphic
    in the field. Medium format was lumped with 35mm in the miniature camera
    shelf. MF came into vogue when color photography did. Studio photogs
    couldn't afford 4x5 sheet film. So the crop factor became a factor when the
    4x5 shooters put a 6x9 roll film insert on the back of their 4x5.

    the point is, DX is the prosumer format and FF will be the 'medium format'
    of the new millenia
    zeitgeist, Feb 4, 2006
  16. John A. Stovall

    SMS Guest

    This is true. Some people believe that the price of a product is
    determined by adding up the cost of the parts, the labor, the overhead,
    and adding some margin for profit. This is rarely the case. Pricing is
    an art. Price it too high and no one buys it. Price it too low and you
    leave money on the table.

    You don't even enter a market if you don't think the margins are there.
    One company I worked at, we had a minimum margin of 43% for new
    products, and that was just breaking even. I think that they've raised
    the minimum to 60% now, and they dump product lines that can't sustain a
    50% margin over the long haul.
    Those cameras were a disaster. Nikon would have been buying a lot of
    baggage and a bad reputation.
    I'd say that FF will be the professional format, and medium format will
    still be film for a while. Unless one of the medium-format manufacturers
    can convince someone like Canon to run some wafers of larger sensors for
    them. So far, the larger sensors haven't been state-of-the-art, and have
    offered inferior quality to the 24x36mm sensors.
    SMS, Feb 4, 2006
  17. I agree with that. I am not convinced that I have much use for fast
    superwides. But that depends on the shooting style.
    Philip Homburg, Feb 4, 2006
  18. John A. Stovall

    w.beckley Guest

    I'm late to the party, but after reading all of these responses, I'm
    surprised at how unreasonable people are on this subject. Guess what
    everyone? The two giants of the industry are finally giving us a
    choice, a difference in their product lines that is much deeper than it
    used to be. And you can choose a brand based on what you most like to

    By and large I find that Canon users believe that one of the following
    things is most important to their photography: wide angles, low light,
    shallow depth of field.

    Similarly, I find that Nikon users believe that one of these is most
    important to theirs: telephoto angles, corner-to-corner sharpness, deep
    focus, flash sync. I also find Nikon users more-frequently prefer zooms
    than do Canon users, but I can't figure out why. Both companies make
    similar zooms in my experience.

    Canon's full frame sensors help them with wide angle, depth of field,
    and low light (better inherent performance with larger photosites at
    the same resolution). Canon's lenses are also, in many instances,
    faster than the Nikkors available at the same focal length, which helps
    low light and depth of field.

    Nikon's DX sensors help them with telephoto and corner-to-corner
    sharpness (outside of DX lenses anyway-I think it's shortsighted to
    assume that built-for-DX lenses won't soon push the limits of the image
    circle in the ways that old lenses did with a 36x24mm frame, if they
    aren't already). And Nikon has always favored faster flash sync, that's
    nothing new.

    So you can easily make a choice based on what you prefer. And these
    things aren't entirely mutually exclusive: Canon's 1.6 sensors get the
    same elevated performance from non EF-S lenses; both formats can shoot
    deep focus (I just find Nikon users saying the shallow focus
    possibilities of Canon don't appeal to their style). Canon users have
    great telephoto lenses at their disposal that won't reach quite as far
    on a full frame body but that will reach as far as they did before
    digital, and Nikon users can shoot wide angles with a stronger line of
    DX lenses than Canon has for EF-S. That last point shouldn't be
    surprising... I imagine Canon has a hard time justifying EF-S R&D when
    they spend so much on improving and making-less-expensive their FF
    sensors; Nikon *needs* to ramp up DX lens releases if they truly intend
    to replace the format.

    Me? I tend to go for shallow depth of field, I like wide angles, and I
    almost always shoot in available light indoors. So the ability to shoot
    at 24mm that would really be 24mm, at 1.4, was important. If I shot
    birds in broad daylight, I'd probably love the fact that my 200mm lens
    becomes a 300mm on a D70. That's why I sold my Nikon gear for Canon
    gear when the 5D was announced (even though I can't yet afford a FF
    camera, that day will come). I found myself needing a film body and I
    wanted to share lenses and I realized that Nikon's future didn't align
    with my style, but Canon's did, so why buy a new film body and a lens
    to replace my DX lens? I grabbed a 20d and an Elan, and I only bought
    lenses that I could also use on a FF body when I could afford it. It
    was the right choice for me personally given my situation and my

    But the debate here seems to suggest either that I don't know my own
    style or that someone with different tastes is simply wrong in their
    preference for Nikon gear, telephoto, etc. And that's simply
    shortsighted. For every artistic benefit of Canon's FF sensors, there's
    an equal but opposite benefit for Nikon's DX sensors. Yes, physics
    dictate better performance from larger photosites, but that's already
    become mostly a nonissue, and in three years it will be so. Both tools
    get you great photographs. Both tools are currently producing, in
    roughly equal proportions, most of the still images you're likely to
    see in a given day. That won't change.

    Do you love your Canon or Nikon DSLR? Great! Do you really need
    anything more than that?
    w.beckley, Feb 4, 2006
  19. John A. Stovall

    JPS Guest

    In message <43e2d8e8$0$4908$>,
    That's certainly an advantage, if you have sufficient light. I wish
    there was a camera with a 12*8mm 8MP sensor and an EOS mount, instead of
    using TCs, so I could look through a brighter viewfinder, at the very
    least, but I would not expect to be able to use it at dawn or dusk, or
    on cloudy days with a 400mm lens. For that, I need my bigger pixels.
    JPS, Feb 4, 2006
  20. You sort of forgot one point: money.

    If money was no object, I could just buy a 1Ds with lots of fast wide lenses.
    And then I'd get a D2X when other issues are more important. (And an MF set,

    If Nikon made a good camera with a fullframe sensor, I'd like to have one.
    I'm not convinced that Nikon's DX sensors provide me with with any net
    benefit over a fullframe sensor.

    However, at the moment I'm not going to spend $3000 on a fullframe sensor.

    It's trade-off, just like 35mm, MF, LF is a trade-off. Do you want to spend
    that kind of money or not. Some people may be willing to spend the money
    to get fast, wide, more dynamic range, less noise, etc. Other people can't
    justify spending that kind of money on those features.
    Philip Homburg, Feb 4, 2006
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