Camera How Good Is Digital Zoom Nowadays? Enough To Ignore A Limited Optical Zoom?


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So don't pack dsigner bags, stick some insulation tape on your camera so it looks like its broken. Who would want to steal it then :D
 
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chiron

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Do you also stick a black mole on your cheek so that nobody recognizes you at the villian's dance party?
 
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On first glance it looks unattractive, that's all you need. just sayin...
 

kidrow

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If you want to take photography seriously, choosing a camera/lens highly dependent on the type of photography you want to do.
you have to make a choice on what you want to shoot, or in other works "choose what you don't want to shoot".
for example wild life requires high speed and high focal length cameras where as portraiture requires other stuff. Street photography requires something different.
journalism requires some other type of gear.

Changing lenses is pretty straight forward if you know how to clean your stuff. cleaning camera sensor and lenses in mirrorless is pretty straight forward if you have the right gear like dry brush and proper solvents. for example I use a dry brush(compressed inert air can) instead of rocket blower, contact lens cleaning fluid, ear buds and cheap toilet paper (toilet paper was the best lint free stuff I found after few experiments)
Also powerful led torch :)

if you cant do this, its better you dont change lenses often.
Thanks for your thoughts.

So, in other words, changing lenses is easy-peasy, but cleaning them/sensor is a chore, :p.

What I was trying to gauge was how easy would it be to switch lenses back and forth. So for instance, say you are in/on (?) the London eye. Your better half poses for a portrait. You take that shot. Later, you spot a cool building in the distance. Is changing lenses then practical?

Put that way, even if changing lenses is easy, I think it'll detract from the experience of being there. Not to mention the fact that your better half/family will get tired of it pretty soon.

As you can see from the scenario I've put forth, it's not so much about being serious about any particular aspect of photography, in this case. Rather, it's more about getting a good all-round device with decent iq.

Even when I'm "serious" about photography (which isn't always though I did wake up at 4am once to be able to photograph the Gateway of India in morning light), I'm striving to be good at whatever I shoot - be it portraits, action, landscapes, macro etc. So I feel the need for a good all-round device remains much the same.

Though my original question isn't one about camera suggestions, I'll dwell on it a bit since that's where the discussion seems to be going-

The travel zooms have the zoom but not the pasm modes & raw ability, besides the smaller sensor. But they are comparatively cheap.
The high end compacts like the RX100 are a bit pricier but they have better iq, pasm modes & raw ability. The downer is the optical zoom.
At a similar budget are bridge cameras like the Panasonic FZ70 or FZ200. These are different from the high end compacts in terms of a. a smaller sensor b. a much greater zoom c. much bulkier.
The bulk of the bridge cameras gets them closer to compact dslrs. The dslrs tick all the boxes but for the zoom. The zoom can be achieved with carrying 2 lenses (which brings up the question of ease of changing), or an all-in-one (which pushes the cost further up). The problem of being bulky remains.
The seemingly ideal solution is an m43 system with an all-round 14-150mm lens (or a Nikon 1 with 10-100mm lens). That is expensive, of course.

This situation led me to wonder if digital zooms on the compacts like the RX100 can make up for the lack of greater optical reach. In this eg., the 2x digital zoom will enable a reach of 200mm (35mm equiv) instead of 100mm.

Again, thanks to all for the replies.

PS: Quick question - Will 2 identical focal lengths (35mm equivalents) from 2 cameras with different sensor sizes result in the same field/angle of view/magnification?
So in other words, will a 200mm (35mm equiv) lens/focal length on a 1/2.3" sensor give the same zoom/magnification/field of view as a 200mm (35mm equiv) lens/focal length on an APS-C sensor, if both cameras shoot from the same spot.
 

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Will 2 identical focal lengths (35mm equivalents) from 2 cameras with different sensor sizes result in the same field/angle of view/magnification?
A lot... Bigger sensor gets more light (fstop), shallow depth of field. for example if you take a 50mm f1.8 lens on a APSC, it would be equivalent to 85mm f3.0 which makes a lot of difference on the image. This effect amplifies at higher focal lengths as they need a lot of light to get decent shots. at the same time, for bigger sensors you cannot use smaller lenses, due to image circle. that is if you use a MFT lens on a full frame camera with adapter, you will get severe vignetting and useless image.

Now, even I thought that having a single zoom lens would solve a lot of problems with bulk etc... but it is not. having a 70-200mm F2.8 does not equate to having 3 prime lenses aka 85mm 135mm and 200mm. because primes are usually many times sharper than the zooms because of less number of movable parts. and second is that primes get better apertures than zooms. the second issue comes with the focusing where longer the zoom, difficult it is to focus due to AF hunting in case of AF lenses. in such cases manuals with range finder markings are better as you can easily guess the distance and pre focus.

Third part is carry case, I have seen many of my friends who carry a messenger type bag which is on your hip and they usually carry 2-3 cameras and 5-6 primes. it becomes very easy to take out a lens and change it and slip the other lens back into the bag. backpacks here become a pain.

Finally, photography is all about how much serious you want to get. it could be a money pit. but all the greatest photographers did not have these latest modern high tech stuff.

If you ask me my opinion, I would either spend on a good camera though it is bulky and if I cant carry a lot of stuff, I simply take pictures on my SGS6. There is not much difference between P&S and high end smart phones. in fact I would suggest Xperia/iphone/SGS6 in this case.
 
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chiron

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As you can see from the scenario I've put forth, it's not so much about being serious about any particular aspect of photography, in this case. Rather, it's more about getting a good all-round device with decent iq.
For that kind of thing the higher end travel zoom category (which have PASM & raw) is the best bet. Not as bulky as the bridge cameras but nearly as much zoom. You will have to give up on the better ISO/low light capabilities/stabilization that you would get from the other enthusiast compacts though.

Too bad it's not digital :p
 
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kidrow

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A lot... Bigger sensor gets more light (fstop), shallow depth of field.
I understand. I was trying to confirm that the field of view/angle of view/zoom/magnification is the same. The idea of "converting" to 35mm equiv focal lengths is to have an idea of the fov, irrespective of sensor size, iinm. Just wanted to know whether that holds true in practice as well.

For that kind of thing the higher end travel zoom category (which have PASM & raw) is the best bet. Not as bulky as the bridge cameras but nearly as much zoom. You will have to give up on the better ISO/low light capabilities/stabilization that you would get from the other enthusiast compacts though.
Please share an example/s of any such camera/s available in India. Most travel zooms I've come across do not offer either pasm or raw.

Thanks for your replies. Cheers.
 

chiron

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The Casio Exilim ZR series (700/800/850/1000) is a good choice but it is not sold in India. Going by the dpreview forums they seem like the ideal camera for casual user who wants a fast & responsive camera that also shoots raw if needed and looking at the optical zoom samples posted there it seems to have a good implementation of that as well.
http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/54583266

Panasonic TZ60 (again not available in India yet) also has raw but considering how overpriced TZ40 is, I don't expect it to be good value either.
 
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kidrow

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^Thanks for your time!

I had looked at the Panasonic ones earlier, & quickly realized that they have not been launched here. As you've mentioned, it's the same with the Casio ones as well. Guess there's no market here for these. So the perfect advanced travel zoom remains elusive.

Cheers! Have a nice one.
 
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kidrow

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Sony RX 10 II looks like it could meet your needs well.
Hey thanks. Sorry I missed your reply earlier.

Yes that would seem to fit the bill if one could afford it, :). Way too expensive, imho.