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Be or not to be FX ...

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Hello,

 

Reading this thread

http://www.wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=28444

comparing FX and DX corner sharpness. From that thread understand that FX seems to be less sharp than DX.

 

I was wondering what's the general opinion regarding to switching from DX to FX. This could be a big step since some might have

to replace all lenses... Did the cost worth the investment. Probably for the future, since I'm sure manufacturer will no more follow DX path. But what about short term results ?

 

Thanks for comments,

 

Dominique

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I am battling th same problem. I have a D2x that I never got round to putting in a housing due to risk v return economics. I get great sharpness from my pair of D200 with the Tokina 10-17 so no regrets there. I recently went back to my one remaining Fuji S2 Pro (no-one wanted to buy it!) due to one D200 getting temporarily broken and the other being used underwater at the time and no-one at the magazine noticed any drop in quality. So do I go FX (while I can still afford a D700 and housing) or just upgrade to two new D300? I have to say I get better sharpness with DX and a smaller optical port than I ever got with 35mm film and a compact port so if I went FX I'd have to go back to a 8 or 9 inch dome. The problem is to get real improvements in quality worth the extra cost.

Edited by John Bantin

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The problem is to get real improvements in quality worth the extra cost.

This is the key point. The quality expectations of FX are greater than DX. With greater quality comes more difficulty.

 

Stephen's tests were not designed to enable judgements between formats. What Stephen did was shoot each system using a standard minimum aperture and typical test scene. Such a test shows what can be expected from a given setup. It does not tell you what is the best possible from a given sensor size. There is nothing wrong with Stephen's tests; you simply can't conclude that DX is sharper than FX because of it. Stephen's best result was with a DX setup and the reasons for that were discussed there.

 

The choice of format boils down to choice of lenses and preferences above water. If you require very high resolution then you must go with FX. Otherwise, each format has some unique lens choices. DX ports and lenses are lighter and more compact and DX.

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Naturally I was being specific to an underwater application. I never felt compelled to take a Hasselblad (when I owned several) underwater because I knew I could not get as good quality as with a Nikon, but in air the converse was obviously and significantly true.

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I also battled the problem and decided to get a Nikon D300.

I guess the DX is better for uwphoto... at least for what I do.

- My D300 is a sealed, fast and furious camera with great things like the EXPEED, nice 100% viewfinder, image processing options and AF fine tune!!!

- My Sea&Sea MDX-D300 housing is amazingly compact and handles gorgeously uw.

- The lens options are amazing no matter what you use:

The Nikkor 10.5mm for DX is far better than 16mm for FX;

And if you go macro, you can get a 90mm and a 160mm for the price of a 60mm and 105mm!!!

In fact the 105mm on DX underwater is like a 212mm on topside, better than the venerable U$$$$ 200mm/2.8D micro!!!

Also have amazing other choices like Tokinas 10-17 and 11-24, Sigma 10-20...

 

But I think the FX is the future, we will probably see it go down the line to consumer cameras in the next 2-8 years.

I just hope it has nice resolution so I can use my DX lenses cropped down!!!

Because of this forecast, I managed to keep the least number of DX lenses on my quiver... now I only have the 10.5mm and the Sigma 10-20mm.

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In fact the 105mm on DX underwater is like a 212mm on topside, better than the venerable U$$$$ 200mm/2.8D micro!!!

How exactly is a 105mm lens on DX underwater like a 212mm lens topside? :huh:

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I am in a similar boat.

Unfortunately since I have not been diving nearly as much as I used to, I still am using my D2X.

I am tempted to get D700 or 5D MkII (well, I will need to buy new wide angle lens anyhow and Canon Macro lens is not that expensive) mainly to get smaller body that is easier to drag around but I am not really sure that the expense will justify the upgrade right now.

The initial main reason to considering moving to FX was the 14-24mm but that might not be very usable afterall. Has anyone try Subal new 10inch dome for 14-24mm?

Has anybody tried this lens with DX format. I wonder if it would be substantially better than 12-24mm DX!

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I'm waiting for the D700fx with the 24mp sensor. You can use it in DX mode with 10mp and use all dx lenes etc. very versatile tool.

 

Mike davidge

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How exactly is a 105mm lens on DX underwater like a 212mm lens topside? :huh:

 

Matt,

I think this may be comparing the final FoV or apparent focal length of a DX in a flat port submerged in salt water to an FX in air.

 

focal len. x crop factor x air/sw inface mag.

 

105 x 1.5 x 1.333(?) = in the neiborhood of 210 mm

(?) aprox.

 

/Bob

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I think this may be comparing the final FoV or apparent focal length of a DX in a flat port submerged in salt water to an FX in air.

I'm not sure of the benefit of a comparison involving refractive magnification - you're either shooting underwater or not! :huh:

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according to nikon rumors the d400 is on its way 15mp with improved high iso. i'll stick with my d200 for uw, 100% vf is nice but i crop everything as the 35mm ratio is a bit pants.

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FX or DX.

This is the money you will be saving staying with DX

post-4290-1234131764.jpg

Edited by Walt Stearns

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Hi Everyone,

 

I've been reading about this for a bit, including topside photography. Personally i've had a DX D300 for about a year now. Am I going to upgrade in the near future? Definitely not.

There are a few things that keep me from doing so.

 

1) The DX / FX debate is a pure technicality. This is based on the assumption that better gear will get you better images. I am at a point with my photography where I know I have still lots to learn and the thing that is going to improve my photos, if anything, is me, not technology. This will stay like this for a long time.

 

2) I don't think I could tell the difference if not specifically looking for it. Even then, I would be curious if I would survive a double ended blind test and tell the difference between FX and DX. Many times, technical improvements are sold as truths, however aren't necessarily discernible. Look at the high end audio / hifi space for starters. Would have to try it out with FX.

 

3) What is wrong with my current gear? Nothing! It takes awesome pictures and I'm happy with the results.

 

4) Even if I was a publishing photo journalist and not a wannabe.... I would probably try to improve my skills first. Have a look at what some of the real pros that write in this forum have published in print. Shot on a D200, looks AWESOME.

 

5) Optics are not consumer electronics. There are many DX cameras out there and lenses are in manufacturing over many years to come. They're not going to go away soon methinks.

 

Overall it's a bit like the "more megapixels is better" statement. It doesn't really help anyone and in some cases isn't even better.

 

My $0.02

 

Cheers,

 

Simon

 

P.S: and yes I'm an amateur, don't flame me if you sell A0 size posters to agencies and have cereal with added megapixels for breakfast.

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....

 

... Look at the high end audio / hifi space for starters. Would have to try it out with FX.

 

I am glad there are audiophile here too on wetpixel :huh: \

:deadhorse:

 

Bring on the tubes vs solid state and digital vs turntable battle ... I am ready :laugh:

... Oh ... lately I am listening to a pair of Sophia Electric 300B, I will bet you a Nikon D300 body, it sounds better than WE300B. :notworthy:

873076393_44d4d4c031.jpg

Cheers !

Edited by CADiver

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I'm not sure of the benefit of a comparison involving refractive magnification - you're either shooting underwater or not! :notworthy:

 

The benefit I see in adding the 1.33 factor is that it shows what you are actually using uw, this is why most people with APS-C sized uwphoto equipment finds difficult to use the 105mm :deadhorse: . On the other hand the chance to have a better-than-200mm-like FoV underwater for the price of a 105mm is surely a good thing, just don't tell that to any nature-photographer-macro-maniac used to shoot the 200mm on land. And for the starters to save some bucks getting a 60mm to get about the same results as a 105mm on film or FX is another good thing.

The 105 behaves underwater as a 140mm on film/FX, it was still too far from the 266mm provided by the 200mm, but using my 105mm as a 212mm on the DX, made me loose most of my desire to buy the 200mm/2.8 micro, that added to the fact the 200mm would handle uw like a 404mm on land... maybe just too much for my photographic ability :huh:. Just as most of the beginners don't have the lust for the 105mm nowadays.

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The new AF-S 35mm/1.8G DX is something that might change that DX vs. FX thing...

One of the best arguments that DX wouldn't last is the lack of good prime lens for it.

Only time will tell... When the DX came at the start of the digital era, I didn't like it at first. Now I think it is best suited for uwphoto than FX, but that is still very ineffective in blocking my desire for a good FX body for the work above water.

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I am glad there are audiophile here too on wetpixel :huh: \

:deadhorse:

 

Bring on the tubes vs solid state and digital vs turntable battle ... I am ready :laugh:

... Oh ... lately I am listening to a pair of Sophia Electric 300B, I will bet you a Nikon D300 body, it sounds better than WE300B. :notworthy:

873076393_44d4d4c031.jpg

Cheers !

 

I'll raise my D2X with 20 KT88s that are coming my way soon :laugh:

I don't do analogue stuff but currently rather taken with 24/88 and HRx 24/176 thing!

Edited by ssra30

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It all comes back to skill. I own a fairly quick car but any professional racer could piss over me in a standard family saloon on a circuit. Don't ask me about my photography skills. I'm just lucky no-one found out!

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The audio analogy is more appropriate to film versus digital than it is to DX vs. FX. The biggest difference is that film is still capable of excellent results. :huh:

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1) The DX / FX debate is a pure technicality.

I think you are completely right with this point.

This is based on the assumption that better gear will get you better images. I am at a point with my photography where I know I have still lots to learn and the thing that is going to improve my photos, if anything, is me, not technology. This will stay like this for a long time.

This is probably true for the majority of us... We just have to remember great images that were shoot in the early years of u/w photography. Those great images stay, technology go away...

3) What is wrong with my current gear? Nothing! It takes awesome pictures and I'm happy with the results.

I raised this question to get the comment of all about this.

I'm actually using a D70s and thinking of renewing for better quality at higher ISO since I dive mostly in dark water. Basically I can : 1- go with a D300 and keep my lens; 2- go for FX with for let's say a D700 and buy all new lenses; 3- wait for and eventual new model...

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If a D400 comes out, you can be guaranteed it won't fit in a D300 housing.

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I am wondering why not more discussion on D90 vs D300 for underwater usage. I am giving up D300 and go for D90 because of smaller size and lighter weight with basically everything I need that a D300 offer. What would be something D300 offer that a D90 doesn't have and relevant to underwater usage ? I will wait for the D300 or D700 replacement for top side when it happen, meanwhile, I think D90 would be just fine, isn't it ?

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"If a D400 comes out, you can be guaranteed it won't fit in a D300 housing."

 

I would be too sure. They only thing that is different between the former D200 and the D300 (on the outside) is the LCD panel was enlarged on the D300. What I have been hearing the D400, it will be housed in the same body, the upgrades are all internal.

Canon's 40D and 50D are prime examples of this.

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