Jump to content

Should I upgrade to FF from APSC?


Recommended Posts

I currently shoot with the A6400, mainly wildlife such as small birds and BIF. I’m fixing to be going on a one year trek across North America just to shoot wildlife. I have the sony 200-600 lens and have been happy with it. I want to make sure I get the most out of this trip as far as quality shots. I have the money to buy an A9 or A7rIV (leaning A9) I just wanted opinions on if I was going to miss the 24MP crop sensor if I went with the A9 shooting with the same lens. Wanted some “professional” opinions on this. Any help would be appreciated.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

It depends. You'll probably miss the extra reach that a crop sensor provides. It's worth bearing in mind that on a crop sensor the 200-600mm is effectively, approximately, 300-900mm given the, again approximate, 1.5x crop factor.

If you're happy with the quality of the shots you're producing at the moment, then I see no reason to change.

The A9 would, however, bring the ISO capabilities of a 24mp FF sensor (as would an A7iii), some autofocus benefits and shooting speed benefits. Whether that's worth the £2k+ investment is really up to you. Perhaps see if you can rent/try one out and decide from there?

(Disclaimer: Not a professional in by any means.) 

Link to post
Share on other sites

The way you asked the question, there's too many variables subject to assumption to give you any meaningful advise.

Here's some questions really only you can answer, which might help you to deduct the answer to your own primary question:

Where do you feel your current setup is lacking?

What do you hope to gain by migrating to Fullframe?

What was the reason you initially went with APS-C over Fullframe?

Link to post
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Pieter said:

The way you asked the question, there's too many variables subject to assumption to give you any meaningful advise.

Here's some questions really only you can answer, which might help you to deduct the answer to your own primary question:

Where do you feel your current setup is lacking?

What do you hope to gain by migrating to Fullframe?

What was the reason you initially went with APS-C over Fullframe?

I wouldn’t say my current setup is necessarily lacking. I want to buy another camera so I can have the long range tele on one setup and a shorter range setup on the other camera. (My wife would use one) I wanted to know if the benefits of the A9 or the A7RIV were worth the extra $.

My hope or wish of a full frame would be crisper shots, idk if the added dynamic range would give that to me or not, that’s part of my question.

I initially went APS-c because it was cheaper and the added zoom range for bird photography. I have proven to myself I love wildlife photography as much as I thought, and the budget for my second camera not including lens is 4K so my options are wide open. I don’t want to spend money needlessly if the results aren’t at least noticeably different to the average persons eye. 

 

I appreciate y’all’s feedback very much. And if y’all would like to see what I’m getting from my current setup you can view my instagram here http://instagram.com/natural_angles Ill take any and all criticism and any areas you think I can improve. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Georgearnoldphotography said:

I don’t want to spend money needlessly if the results aren’t at least noticeably different to the average persons eye. 

I appreciate y’all’s feedback very much. And if y’all would like to see what I’m getting from my current setup you can view my instagram here http://instagram.com/natural_angles Ill take any and all criticism and any areas you think I can improve. 

Consider yourself followed (Benjour on there).

The difference in results will be additional depth of field at a given aperture, higher ISO capabilities and, as you mentioned, dynamic range.

The DR differences will probably not make a huge difference seeing as most of your shots are well exposed anyway, so having ability to boost shadows a little more or decrease highlights a little more won't be as valuable to you.The DR would be useful for your landscape shots, but you (again) manage absolutely fine without the need for it, plus you've always got bracketing in one form or another for reasonably static shots anyway.

Being able to push ISO more is where I found the biggest difference going from APS-C to FF, albeit on Pentax before coming across to Sony. ISO 1600 on the K-70 was where I'd set my limit, with 3200 if I really needed it. On the K-1, and now the A7iii, I'd happily shoot at 2000 without much issue, 3200 is alright, 5000 is doable especially with noise reduction in post (through Topaz Denoise AI if Lightroom is struggling). For low light/B&W stuff I'll happily use 5000 if needs be. Yet to push it past that but have seen some reasonable results at higher ISOs (references unavailable sorry, not made a note of them)!

Lastly, DoF. Again, it's nice for isolating subjects in the case of the odd flower photo you've taken but it's not something that can't be emulated to some degree through APS-C. i.e. shoot at a wider aperture on APS-C and you get more DoF, simple! For your longer shots it's probably not necessary to have it, because the DoF will be thin and you'd probably be shooting at a higher aperture for sharpness then anyway.

Irrespective of all the above, you're VERY capable with what you've got - you could go for a FF and no doubt make the most of it, but you're nailing it with the A6400. 

The question above about 'where is your setup lacking' is the best question to ask yourself.  Or wording it slightly differently, where is your current set up holding you back? If the answer is 'it's not' then no need to change unless, like me, you want new toys.

The A7iv will give you huge detail given it's a 61mp sensor, but I think that's the only true benefit over the A9. I considered both but they weren't worth the additional outlay versus the A7iii which was a sweet spot for functions, cost and sensor size. 24mp is ample for internetting and medium-to-large prints so I don't need more.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Georgearnoldphotography said:

I wanted to know if the benefits of the A9 or the A7RIV were worth the extra $.

That question noone but you can answer. Since you reserved $4k for a new camera, seems like your budget isn't a constraint.

8 hours ago, Georgearnoldphotography said:

My hope or wish of a full frame would be crisper shots, idk if the added dynamic range would give that to me or not, that’s part of my question.

Don't expect miracles here or you'll certainly be disappointed. The fullframe cameras have about 1 stop advantage in ISO-performance over APS-C. If you mostly shoot at ISO 100, the difference will practically be indiscernible unless you heavily post-process your RAW-files. When the ISO goes up you'll benefit a bit from fullframe: if you consider ISO 3200 to be borderline acceptable on your A6400, that value goes up to ISO6400 on the A9.

So: if you heavily post-process RAWs, shoot at very high shutter speeds (requiring ISO to go up) or shoot in very dim lighting conditions, fullframe will give crisper images. If not, the benefit of fullframe over APS-C will be marginal.

8 hours ago, Georgearnoldphotography said:

I initially went APS-c because it was cheaper and the added zoom range for bird photography.

If you find yourself using the 200-600 a lot at 600 mm on your A6400, you have 2 options on the fullframe path which will give you similar results: buy an A7RIV and crop (A7RIV can give a 26 MP APS-C crop), or get an A9 and a 1.4× teleconverter. The loss of light will be compensated by better ISO-performance on the A9. So the reach shouldn't be a problem when upgrading to fullframe.

8 hours ago, Georgearnoldphotography said:

I don’t want to spend money needlessly if the results aren’t at least noticeably different to the average persons eye. 

Again: don't expect miracles. It's more the specific benefits of the A7RIV and the A9 that might give you substantially nicer images:

A7RIV: if you plan to print really large or often crop your images a lot.

A9: if you benefit from supreme subject tracking, 20 fps and/or silent shooting (might be very useful for your wildlife photography).

 

I deliberately let you make the list of arguments to migrate, so that your trade-off doesn't get clouded by any other arguments anyone might have to use one format over the other.

Edited by Pieter
Link to post
Share on other sites

20 hours ago, Benz3ne said:

The question above about 'where is your setup lacking' is the best question to ask yourself.  Or wording it slightly differently, where is your current set up holding you back? If the answer is 'it's not' then no need to change unless, like me, you want new toys.

This is indeed the point I was trying to make. From what I gather (and looking at your photos) it seems like your current setup isn't holding you back but you're more interested in exploring new possibilities.

If a new camera increases your interest in photography, your boosted enthusiasm will likely help produce more and nicer images. Looking at your photos though I'm pretty sure any (un)trained eye will have a very hard time telling if these were made with an APS-C camera or fullframe. Only in a side-by-side comparison of the same photo will experienced photographers be able to spot the slight difference.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Posts

    • Shot in SD with Sony a7ll.

      Welcome, dear visitor! As registered member you'd see an image here…

      Simply register for free here – We are always happy to welcome new members!

    • Hello, I wanted to share the set up for tracked panoramas that I am currently using, wich is based on the use of two two way head from Sunway: the DT-03 and the DT-03R. Both heads are very steady. They are made up of two parts: 1) a 360º graduated rotating/panoramic base with a bidirectional tilt central body (adjustable with two locking levers), and 2) an upper part that, in the case of the DT-03, it is a clamp quick release plate and, in the case of the DT-03, it is a graduated panoramic screw-on rotating head, both compatible with the Arca Swiss system. These upper parts are removable and, therefore, can be replaced by other standard rotating jaws type IRC-64, or by other indexed ones. As I said, I use one of them, the DT-03, as an equatorial wedge, placed directly on the tripod or on a leveling base. Its quick release head with clamp allows me to quickly place the tracker on top and be able to align easily. To align it, I loosen one of the central pins of the kneecap a little, and leave the other loose. This way I can safely achieve the degree of inclination of the tracker that I want. That, combined with the 360º rotating base that the head has, is an excellent option for precise and fast alignment. Then I place the DT-03R on top of the tracker, and use it as a panoramic flat base on which I mount an L-plate combined with a rotating clamp. On these last accessories I place the camera, ready to shoot, being able to move it both in the horizontal and vertical axis. The DT-03R screwed to the tracker allows me to have a solid flat and rotating base on which to pan without losing horizontality and, at the same time, I can compensate for the rotation of the tracker thanks to its base, which also rotates 360º. So the set up is as follows: Both This is what I use: Tripod Leveling base (optional) Sunway DT-03 two way head as a wedge Star tracker from Move Shoot Move Nomad Sunway DT-03R as a leveled base L bracket 360º rotatory arca swiss head Here I share some photos of the set up; I hope it helps:     View: original size View: original size View: original size You can find them in the Sunwayphoto website. You can also see down below some of the photos that I took with this set up: View: original size View: original size View: original size @mallorca_landscapephotography
    • My problem may be related to yours or maybe this should be a separate thread. My (used) A1 has always (1-year) had minor play in lens/mount snugness but no issues. Then, two days ago when I turned on the camera, it did not recognize the already mounted lens, did not display the F-stop and would not autofocus. The contacts look normal.  I cleaned them contacts, remounted the lens multiple times, tried my four other ff lenses (Sony 20, 90, 70-200, 200-600) but nothing changed. I also tried shifting the small play in the mount. Nothing helped yesterday but today shifting the lens reproduces the problem very clearly; a very slight turn of the lens and behavior is normal or it is not (no autofocus, no F-stop display). One time it showed the message lens is not properly attached. The looseness is not in/out but rotational and very slight, though noticeable.  Sorry for lengthy description. Any ideas would be appreciated.
  • Topics

×
×
  • Create New...